When I went to my first Al-Anon meeting, I met a lot of people who were welcoming and kind. I listened but didn't understand what I was hearing. I was told to "Keep coming back" which I did. At the next meeting, I met the person B. who became my sponsor. It was one of those moments of clarity that I've had throughout my life when I sense a kindred spirit and someone with whom I feel comfortable.
Anyway, as I attended more and more meetings, I learned that most of the people attending were all sponsored by one person. Although I had originally been approached by this person about being sponsored, I didn't feel the level of comfort that I did with B. Instead what I observed was a great deal of control being exerted in spite of the wisdom and experience that was obviously present.
I made a decision (and jumped) to ask B. to be my sponsor. I followed my gut feeling and found an individual who I can talk to about anything, who isn't judgmental, who is working with me on the steps, and who has years in the program. I am also pleased to call this person my friend.
Having a sponsor is critical in my opinion. I've been to meetings in which there are people who have been four years or more in the program and don't have a sponsor. One guy has 16 years in AA and 6 years in Al-Anon and never has worked the steps for either program. Something is obviously working for them. I knew though that I couldn't do this alone or with just going to meetings. I needed some guidance from another Al-Anon person. I think that my HP put me in the presence of someone on this earth who was just the person that I needed.
I have made calls to B. when things seemed unbearable. I've made calls just to share something good. I've made calls to ask questions. I've made calls because I wanted to make sure B. was okay. I appreciate the time that it has taken to work with me. I've been willing to do what it takes to get peace and serenity. It will always be a work in progress but I know that I have the beginning of a firm foundation because of what B. has shared with me.