Home Newcomers Nurturing is Our Nature

Nurturing is Our Nature

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picture-1One of my self-care activities is to spend time with the beautiful wildflowers that we are blessed to have in Tennessee. One of the first wildflowers to announce the coming of spring around here is the bloodroot, and I took pictures just as some were beginning to blossom.

As I looked at the small cluster of flowers (right), I thought of the OA meetings I attend. My meetings tend to be small, and some members are in the full blossom of recovery while others have not yet begun to bloom. As I photographed, I noticed two little buds, and when I zoomed in, here is what I found.

picture-2It looked like the bigger bud was nurturing the smaller one (left). Again, I thought of my OA meetings. It is often newcomers who nurture more recent newcomers. That was certainly my experience when I first came to an OA meeting years ago—I was desperate, scared, and confused, and grateful I wasn’t the only one.

I went back into the woods to the same group of flowers the next day. Here they are, the same two bloodroots (below right).

picture-3This is my favorite picture of the spring, and I am deeply moved by the tender nurturing I see in the two flowers. Both flowers are growing. The picture reminds me of sponsorship: the tender, gentle, and wise nurturing in the relationship of sponsor and sponsee. This kind of nurturing has helped my own recovery to grow spiritually, emotionally, and physically.

Certainly it is wonderful when a sponsor is a seasoned veteran. But it is also wonderful when a relative newcomer reaches out to sponsor a newer newcomer. Wonderful growth can occur in both types of sponsoring relationships.

That is how sponsorship works, and I’m grateful I was reminded of it by my Higher Power as I observed the wildflowers and how they grow.

—Story and images by Larry W., Knoxville, Tennessee USA

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