My “Home Group” is at our large Homeless Shelter in our city. It was the first AA Meeting I went to, the first AA Meeting of the day in our area. I am not sure what horrified me more that day, that I was at a Shelter or that I was at an AA Meeting. Once I got there and sat down the rest is history. Everything has grown on me since then. The program and the people in the shelter that I see every day.
I got to the Shelter this morning, it had started snowing and the roads were getting greasy. I was in a little bit of a “mood” because of the driving. I was making coffee and there was a lot of buzz around the coffee machine, most of the outside smokers were inside because of the weather. People were talking and many of the folks there know me. I turned around and I saw what I thought was someone slip on the floor. Then I heard someone say, “He’s having a seizure, get help.” Instantly people knew what to do, except me, I froze in my tracks. Off to my left, one of the “Homeless Relapsers” (as described by him), who has the miles of pain on his face, took me by the lower arm and says calmly, “C’mon Dear, let’s get over here. “He guides my arm gently and we walk over to the side of the room.
In the meantime help is with the victim, I said, “I have never seen anything like that before.” (it is still going on – foam and shaking, etc. ) He said, “Yeah honey, I could tell, here I was grateful it wasn’t me…”
Many of the folks in the Shelter are “on the run.” From drugs, alcohol, relationships. Each person has a story. The place is its own community, it’s own heart beat. Many folks attend our meetings, many folks “graduate” from the Shelter and move on. Get housing, jobs, a new life. Many graduates come back to our meetings to maintain perspective of “where they came from.”
This morning I got perspective from where I came from. Not to say that I was going to have a grand mal seizure but how do I know what may have happened if I was still drinking? It wasn’t getting any prettier I know that for sure. I feel so grateful that my friend (that who on the street I would have crossed to avoid 8 months ago), was gentle and kind because we are both in the same boat and helping each other