I chaired a meeting last night. The topic was "losing it and getting it back," how we "relapse" like our alcoholics and the tools we use to get back on the beam.
I shared an embarrassing story about "losing it" recently over something inconsequential, so I was surprised when I was finished and we were breaking up into our groups and the woman next to me asked me to be her sponsor.
For people who have years and years in the program and have sponsored many people, this may not sound earth shattering. But it is for me. I've never had the privilege of sponsoring anyone before.
So I feel humbled and a little scared.
My sponsor calls her sponsees her "bugs." She told me that one day I would have my own little bug in the room who was attracted to my light.
Now I think I will have to walk a little straighter in my program, because my sponsee will be watching me just as I watched my sponsor.
I have a good role model. I have seen my sponsor attend all her regular meetings (three Al-Anon and one open AA meeting) every week, rain or shine, good times and bad. I've seen her mentor something like 14 sponsees with wisdom, and make each of us feel cared for and loved. I've watched her walk through difficulties at work, the illness of her mother, a death in the family. All with grace and dignity. I will look to her example.
And I know that I don't have to do it alone. The beauty of being part of a line of sponsorship is that it contains the accumulated wisdom of all who came before us. The way we work the steps is bounded by that tradition. And if something comes up that I don't know how to answer, I can ask my sponsor, and she can ask her sponsor, etc.
Of course, I will pray.