In some prior blog posts from fellow members of Group 5, I’ve been referenced as the comedian of my group. My friend, Chuck Fink, asked me to write my own post of my experience in MWW from the perspective of my being the “class clown”. I decided to submit this post. It is, however, exactly BECAUSE of MWW and my participation in Group 5 that my comic voice has changed. So any humor here will be accidental or incidental.
As has been recounted in earlier posts, our first Group V MWW meeting was mind expanding. After two guys spoke of heart breaking personal journeys, my head was in the oven. What am I doing here? Why are these guys here? If I want doom and gloom, I can just go home to the ill-fated relationship that brought me to Asheville in the first place and is kicking my ass daily. So with nothing to lose, I just opened up and shared MY journey. And laughter pervaded the room. Apparently, my misery had comic appeal, especially in contrast to earlier shares. Noticing that I had a forum for my humor, as well as my desperate need for approval, I decided to stick around.
And I’ve found riches beyond my wildest dreams. I slowly began to forego my judgments and actually LISTEN to the sharing of my brothers. To be sure, I mock the guy whose check-in is typically bland and boring…”all is well, we’re loving each day”; blah, blah, blah. And what of the guys whose check-in stories take longer to share than the actual events? I’ve learned to suck it up and look for other characteristics in them to appreciate. When one guy told of rescuing an injured duck and taking it to a vet, I resisted suggesting that for the climax of the story I expected an account of the duck dinner that evening; at least until it was my turn to share.
The foundation of our relationship, however, is truth. We are free to be honest and vulnerable because we have developed trust. Tears, warmth or belly laughs might accompany it, but our common denominator is respect and honesty. And I am proud to believe that I am valued in the group at least as much for my candor and compassion as my wit.
I feel truly blessed by my involvement in Group 5 and MWW.