God, Let me have a new experience, Let me see the truth …
My new and improved meeting schedule began on Monday night, with a meeting, right down the hill from home. A ten minute walk through the tunnel to Georges Vanier Metro.
Now I know, where several of my friends disappeared to, when they left meetings we used to do together. This particular Monday Meeting is a Big Book study …
Like I can’t get enough of the book as it is.
Tonight, I attended my first meeting in French. In all these years of meetings, I never ventured across the solitude’s for a French meeting, because I’m Anglo.
My friends, including my sponsor opened this meeting, specifically to open a “New Experience” for folks who want something a bit different. It’s a carbon copy of the Sunday Night meeting, being a literature discussion, only in French.
Having read the Big Book for all these years, in English, I know what it says. And after all these years talking about said book, I know what to say, on various topics. We read from the Book tonight, and the 10th Step.
Not shying away from a challenge, They asked me to read first, which I had a huge paragraph, in French, I read like a Boss… When the share went around the room, I was on the tail end, so I had time to think about what I wanted to say, I just needed to find the right words, in the right tense, in the right order. And I was able to speak “In French” for the first time, in a room full of Francophone folks.
And we talked about The Tenth Step. Having just completed these steps with my sponsor, I knew the territory and what I wanted to say. I think I made sense, in the end. Everybody was proud of my effort.
My friends were impressed with the fact that I made the effort to talk, and not just sit there and not say a word. It always goes, if you make the effort, and not hit the nail on the head, people understand. But if you don’t try, it’s a bad reflection on you.
I had a French Big Book here at home that I was reading off and on all week, practicing my reading and comprehension. Like I said, I know the book, so reading it in French was really not a stretch. I understand and comprehend more than I give myself credit for.
Learning a second language “in the rooms” is sometimes easier than learning it in a classroom. Because on both sides, the words are exactly the same. However, the French Big Book, is twice as FAT as the English Big Book.
My Francophone friends use English meetings to practice and hone their English, in the same way, I want to practice and hone my French, the same way. Knowing people in said meeting makes it a bit easier, because if I get stuck, I get help.
But, You Must Make the Effort …