Attending the narcotics anonymous meeting was definitely an experience I will never forget. When my mom and I first pulled up I couldn’t have been more nervous, all the people smoking outside, but as I made my way in I began to feel a bit more comfortable. I did see Ani, the girl who spoke to our class. I overheard others talking about Bo who showed up later on in the night. As I went inside the church, the basement had been arranged with a circle of chairs, with children tables on the side. As members began to file in, the younger crowd sat at the smaller childrens tables while many of the others sat in the circle, I sat in the circle.
The meeting started with people taking turns reading from the Narcotics Anonymous Basic Text and a sheet of paper. This is how they always start a meeting, and also how they did start in school. “Narcotics Anonymous is a nonprofit Fellowship or society of men and women for whom drugs had become a major problem. We are recovering addicts who meet regularly to help each other stay clean.” After that, they directed the attention to a table with the NA book and other books and pamphlets which could be purchased or are for free.
After the text was read, people celebrated special occasions. New members were welcomed greatly, as we had one at the time, and also a mother and son who came in later. All received literature and phone numbers of other members for help with addictions. Next, people who were celebrating certain times away from drugs, 30 days, 60 days…. introduced themselves. 2 were celebrating their 30th day and one was celebrating his 9th month. Almost everyone looked familiar, it made you think about the way some people act in certain situations and why others don’t understand why they do.
Next everyone had to introduce themselves. I was so nervous! Everyone would say their name and say they were an addict. When it was my turn, “My name is …………..” After they all said hello, I felt I should have said something else, like I was a visitor, or even an addict just to fit in for the time, but it was too late. While everyone introduced themselves, donations went around as this was a nonprofit, no-cost organization, I wish I had money on me.
Now the time that took up the majority of the 2 hours. Many shared their stories, most to get stuff “off their back”. All talked about things going well, and wrong in their lives at the time, but how they all are sticking to NA and getting help from their mentors. Others had mentors who were also having trouble, so they were having trouble in completing their “steps”. Steps were a reference to their progress, many talked about being on step 7 and doing very well. Many of the stories were definitely worth listening to, adding to the many reason why I have never done, or seen, an illegal drug in my life.
After all the stories were shared, to end the meeting everyone got in a large circle and held onto each other. More people read literature and we prayed for all of the others in NA who did not attend and also for ourselves. It was a great way to end the meeting. As people emptied out, many friends from the meeting talked to each other, I got straight into the car. The meeting was definitely an experience everyone should take on, and was very educational. I am glad I attended the NA meeting and will never forget it.