Such a common topic lately at meetings and one that’s been at the forefront of my writing and consideration lately – because I’ve been having to confront a lot of what I am afraid of. The concept of confronting my fear on it’s own was terrifying for me for the last year and a half. I knew that life on life’s terms was going to be difficult, and so far in recovery, I’ve been blessed with sponsorship, a higher power, faith and serenity. My peace and faith developed alongside of the program and the fellowship, with the guidance of my higher power – and with minimal road bumps. Of course there were a few, but they paled in comparison to the struggle to get and remain sober. Living sober, now, the struggle has dissipated. The desire to drink has left me – what a miracle!
Within this new miracle I have found that life, as I knew it before, does not exist. I once heard a dear friend say that the hardest part of the first year of recovery was living life – not escaping, not having a way to escape. You had to feel everything. And I’ve been afraid of that since I got my 30 day chip – when I realized sobriety was possible, and that life in all its glory and its misery, was at my doorstep. I can say today that I am grateful for the potential to live my life – to feel both the good and the bad. That is only a blessing granted to me through sobriety.
But it is not always fun. It is not always easy. It is, compared to drinking to forget it all, very hard. But I am not my thoughts – bad situations, unfavourable actions, things not going my way – they will not break me. They do not determine the quality of my life. I know all of these things but in the moment, when stress weighs heavily on my shoulders each morning – sometimes I forget how to give it over. I start my day in my usual way, asking for guidance, but I still hold onto a little bit of the pain, struggle or drama. I keep a little bit to myself because, in the end, I have come to realize, I don’t trust that anyone can handle it the way that I can. I think that it is somehow my responsibility to bear the weight of my own life, on my own shoulders. The funny thing that I am coming to realize is that, this is just not true.
I am loved. I am not alone.
My biggest fear was always being alone. Being unlovable, not being worthy – not being enough. I tried, for many years, to determine a path for myself that would allow me to escape or avoid these feelings. Instead today, my outward actions are guided by the love that I want to receive.
I will ask, today, not only for the love or guidance or protection that I need in this time of stress, but also for the guidance to give that caring, protecting, nurturing love to those who I encounter throughout my day.
If I follow the path my Higher Power guides me,
I will be enough. I will be happy.
And if I forget how to turn it over, or recognize that I am taking back my will, I will do what I have learned: start over. Try again. Practice.
I am learning to trust myself again, and to trust in a Higher Power who I spent many years dismissing and pushing out of my life. It is not an easy process, but the rewards I already have felt are of a magnitude I did not know was possible. I have to keep moving forward, hand in hand.