Published January 2014.

January 2014: Painting the City

As a newcomer, he had AA and a backpack of spray paint. Now he’s a GSR and his life is full color

The thing that scared me so much about AA was that I thought once I joined, I’d lose myself and become a mindless automaton. I’d be on the corner telling people the “good news,” and I’d have to let go of all the things that I enjoyed. I’d have to cut my hair and stop listening to music. No cure could be worth that, I thought. Better to die as myself, with dignity.

But AA has taught me that I can be whatever I want to be in sobriety. My first sponsor said that I can do anything in AA, as long as I’m willing to pay the consequences. He told me that as long as I listened...

-- Jason K.

Albuquerque, New Mexico