Souvenirs While Traveling
I’m on my way back to Chicago after a business trip to Delaware. During my travels, I made a little time to get to an AlAnon meeting. It was a wonderful meeting, the entire group stayed focused on the recovery program that Al-Anon offers. The meeting topic was on Step Two, Came to believe that a Power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity. The person doing the lead encapsulated Step Two into three words: hope, faith and trust. It was a perspective I hadn’t heard before–one of the benefits of visiting a meeting while out of town. That perspective, as it turned out, was a souvenir to bring home with me.
I kept reflecting on the word ‘trust’ as it applies to Step Two. I had recently lost trust in my Higher Power to handle a personal issue, which caused me to go into fear mode. I thought about that situation after the Step Two meeting and realized something. While out of town, I trusted in my GPS navigation to safely guide me where I needed to get, even though I was in unfamiliar territory. It knew how to navigate me around obstacles (road construction and accidents). It also put me on the fastest route to get to my destination. All I have to do to tap into the GPS system is keep my battery charged and plug in. Then I realized that my Higher Power is my GPS and can navigate me through all the unfamiliar roads of life and safely get me where I need to be. My Higher Power won’t stop me from making a wrong turn, but will help reroute me if I get off course. The only thing I need to do for access is keep my battery charged (through prayer and meditation as suggested in Step Eleven) and plug in.
Visiting meetings while traveling not only offers me an opportunity to hear different perspectives, it helps to keep me grounded while I’m away from home. Staying in contact with AlAnon members–even if I don’t know them, will help me to remember and stay in all the principles of our program. And sometimes I hear new things that I can bring back home with me. What better souvenir could I ask for?
At the time of this writing, I’ll be boarding another plane in just about two weeks. It will take me to Virginia Beach where I’ll participate in the biggest meeting that I’ve been entrusted to attend: the World Service Conference. I’ll be back home by the time you’re reading this. I will have brought back many souvenirs, some for me in the form of memories, friendships and growth. Plus, I’ll have brought a few souvenirs for you. I will have love gifts to give you and information that is important to Al-Anon as a whole, and ultimately your recovery. I’ll bring your souvenirs to the May Assembly, please come to collect them.
Delegate, Panel 55
I know what you mean about travelling and going to mtgs. I did that for 19 years many yrs ago. now, I live in Georgia and haven’t been involved in mtgs for 10, 12, maybe 15 yrs. I’m visiting Chicago for a family funeral and decided to take advantage of the city life: went to a nearby alanon mtg. things came back to me as I listened to others. the deep level of pain for the newcomer hasn’t changed. I realized either I can live in an isolated bubble in the woods, or mingle with people who can challenge my serenity. I’m tired of living like a hermit, not speaking to anyone for days. I look forward to coming back to help my mom this winter. though the weather is brutal here, I look forward to more alanon mtgs. maybe even an acoa mtg. I know God is moving things around in me, and I’m game! I’m grateful to the person who takes a commitment to show up in a back room of a grade school on a cold windy Friday night, with a bucket of literature and books, not knowing if anyone will show up. those wonderful things about the program and the program ppl haven’t changed. I am overwhelmed with gratitude.