I first went to online meetings in 2013, early in recovery, with young children and desperate to get to meetings. The time difference was tricky as they were all overseas-based. I was however very grateful to be able to attend them. Eventually I made childcare plans and found regular face to face meetings including my home group. Online meetings looked very different to our Zooms now.
The lockdowns of 2020 led me back to regular online meetings.
These were crucial to my recovery and oh what a bonus in that now I was both strengthening my recovery but also making connections with fellow AAs from around the world not just in my city or my country. There’s the chat time before and after the meetings, the sharing of other meeting details and events, the reaching out to others. It is never ‘just a meeting’.
Alot of those connections have continued via email or messaging even though most of the meetings have returned face to face. Meeting some of those people at our National convention has been wonderful. Watching newcomers come in and stay has been such a gift to us all. I believe that online meetings have strengthened recovery for me and so many of us including newcomers who might not have come in at all to a face to face setting. I love that those who are socially or geographically isolated can access meetings and extended fellowship in this way.
I personally am able to attend face to face meetings however I will never stop attending my regular online meetings as well. Having online meetings I can count on if I am traveling is so helpful. I am so grateful to those who set these up and kept them going. I look forward to reading other people’s stories here on this OIAA website.