For Newcomers who may nervously and reluctantly enter the door of their first AA meeting, hearing themselves applauded and acknowledged as “the most important person in the room” can seem very ironic and maybe even manipulative.  It takes them a long time to learn the truth – that they are extremely important, not because they desperately need to get sober, but because we need them in order to stay sober.  Even that can sound a little vampire-like.  But it really has to do with the fact that Newcomers help us remember how it felt to pry ourselves away from the grip of unmanageability.  If we allow ourselves to forget, then we will slip out the same door we entered, maybe never finding our way back.  As the Newcomer struggles with understanding what has happened, how he has come to this point, and what lies ahead for him, we light the way for him.  In doing so, we teach ourselves again and again how it works, what must be done, how to help, how to give back.  We sound the trumpets and herald his entrance.  We bow and greet him.  He is the messenger who has traveled across the battlefield to find us.  He is the agent of our continued reprieve.
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