From the September 2012 magazine.

September 2012: Heave Ho!

He made it through the doors of AA, but not the doors of the church

I was sitting in church on Dec. 31, 2001. It is a family tradition that we bring in the New Year in church. I slid into the seat next to my mom, who turned to me with a surprised and annoyed look. She asked if I had been drinking. It never crossed my mind that the two fifths of sherry I drank about two hours earlier could actually be smelled on me!

The pastor called for the choir members to come to the choir log and sing a few selections. I went up with the rest of my choir members and sang a few songs. I led the last song. As I crooned one that I had sung many times before, something was not the same. My spirit did not feel as uplifted, and I began to hear a voice that said, “No more. You will not do this anymore.” As soon as the song ended, I felt sick to my stomach and ran out the side door. It’s a very small area between the choir entrance and the back exit. When I opened the door and stepped down, I noticed one of the deacons standing in the small area. I began to vomit all over the deacon’s very expensive shoes. I was mortified! With one swift move, he leaned over, grabbed the mop from the bucket, and began to mop up the vomit. Then, gently, he told me to go home and feel better. Thank God I lived right across the street.

-- L.W.

New York, New York

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