From the July 2014 magazine.

To Lift his Spirits

After an AA mom’s son lands in jail for drunken driving, she learns to stay sober and let go

After many years of living as a dry drunk, I found my way back into the rooms of AA. I had been working the program vigilantly for almost a year and a half when my sobriety was tested in ways I never imagined. My brother was diagnosed with cancer, and two days later our father, who had been ill for many years, committed suicide. The final blow came eight weeks later when my only child was sentenced to two years in prison for another DUI. In my grief and pain I couldn’t imagine any punishment worse than a prison sentence for Daniel (I’ve changed his name to protect his anonymity). I was devastated and didn’t know how he or I would be able to endure that fate. How could I help Daniel or lift his spirits for the next two years, when I felt so despondent myself?

After Daniel had been in prison for two months, he sent me a letter telling me that I had been approved for visitation; he added that he hoped I would come to see him soon. I was nervous. As Daniel’s drinking had escalated, we’d had very little contact over the past few years. Before I went to visit my son I prayed and also asked my home group to pray for my Higher Power to give me wisdom. I also asked God to go in with me to the prison and direct my thoughts and words. I was really scared.

-- V,J.

Chandler, Arizona

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