My daughter and her husband are raising their children in the rooms.  The children go with them to a NA meeting once or twice a week.  The other nights, they take turns going, or I watch the kids so that the two of them can go together.  At the meeting, the kids know when to be quiet, when it’s ok to talk, when to go in the playroom at the meeting so that the grownups can talk.  They enjoy going because they’ve known these grownups their whole lives and they are loved and doted on.  They know doctors, nurses, lawyers,  grocery store clerks, carpenters, and electricians, and they know the Serenity Prayer.  Plus, they get to play with the other kids there – on a school night.

I overheard one of my granddaughters, Madison,  telling her friend on the phone, “I saw Chris last night.  He was at the meeting with his mommy.”  Hmmm.  How do you tell an 8-year-old about anonymity?  Some of my daughter’s “regular” friends will say to her, “What kind of “meeting” do you go to?  Vada (my granddaughter) told Addy about it and she wants me to go.”  My daughter gets tickled but she tells the truth.  She is not ashamed of her recovery, and doesn’t mind talking to others about it.  She proudly wears her NA shirts, of which she has quite a collection.  The kids even have tye-dyed shirts with the NA emblem on it.  Her husband says that it won’t hurt them to be around the 12 steps, since their parents live them every day.  It might even help the kids, to learn to make amends, accept personal responsibility, etc.   Between meetings and then church twice a week, they are a busy family.  There are worse places for kids to learn about success and failure, their higher power, and that living a good life is a work in progress for everyone.