I went to an AA meeting today. In August, I’ll be celebrating 5 years sober. Since having my daughter, it’s been difficult to make meetings. When I first had her, I felt abandoned by my AA family. One person came to visit me. Knowing I had an absentee husband and no family close by, not a single member of my homegroup offered to come over, hold a meeting at my house, bring me food, etc. Actually, no one even called me. And the week that I delivered my daughter, my friend in the program announced at the end of the meeting that I had my baby and gave the stats. Someone commented, “This time is only for AA related announcements.” That’s my homegroup! 

I have finally started taking my daughter to my homegroup’s Saturday meeting because they have childcare. I took her once before when she was younger and the lady watching her left her in a poop filled diaper while I was in the meeting – never came to get me so I could change her. The next day, my daughter was sick with a stomach virus. Now that she’s older, potty trained, talking, and has built up her immune system, I feel better about bringing her with me.

The AA system seems a bit flawed to me. It is true that I would not be where I am today without my AA sobriety. However, for me, it takes more than sitting in meetings, working the steps, and doing service work. For me, I need a community. Some people would argue that AA is a community. In today’s meeting, 3 out of 38 women were in this homegroup when I got sober almost 5 years ago. It’s hard to find community when the door constantly revolves. 

I find my community in yoga. The smiles, hugs, and words of encouragement that I get from my yoga friends are so much more sincere than what I have found in the rooms of AA. My experiences with AA are hopefully not like everyone else’s. My experiences are cold and even a little harsh. And in recovery, sometimes we just need compassion.