The season of gratitude is upon us, and I wanted to start the month off right with a list post on that very subject! The gifts of sobriety are, of course, too many to enumerate. But that won’t stop me from trying . . . Each one of these bullet points could be a full post – or even a book – unto itself. I have attempted to capture a universe of meaning in a sentence, and trust the words will resonate with you at a deep level. Please feel free to add your “gratitudes” in the comments. Oh, and I want to be sure I mention how very grateful I am for you!
You might think of Halloween as the first holiday of many for the months to come. And perhaps you have friends and family members who find Halloween to be the first drinking holiday of the season. However, if you’re in recovery or at least striving to stay sober, then drinking or drug use is something you want to avoid.
Peeling the onion – one giant onion comprised of seemingly infinite layers of thin, translucent resistance, know-it-all-ness, habits, misunderstandings, misinterpretations, the BS of erroneous Belief Systems, and just plain growing beyond the point I have arrived at so far – that is my objective . . . Being comfortable being uncomfortable – I’m starting to learn how. No, I don’t like it. But I am willing to be uncomfortable in my quest to navigate and attain the next phase of awareness. I am coming to believe it’s a requirement.
This week we are sharing a TED talk by Scott Strode. Now clean and sober, Scott finds strength and inspiration for his recovery by participating in sports. In this wonderful talk, Scott states, “Every time I stood on top of a mountain or crossed a finish line, I was a little more a climber, and a little less an addict.” Enjoy!
Lately people in my day-to-day life have battled suicidal thoughts, fallen off the wagon, lost a loved one in a heartbreaking manner, and been painfully dumped. I used to dramatically interpret these types of events, or make some kind of self-righteous judgement. Which I know now is code for: things I feared could just as easily be happening to me.
The vast majority of community events take place in a setting where alcohol is served. Even when they don’t, such as a lecture for example, there are frequently comments made which draw attention to the normalcy of drinking. These comments are so common that they are ubiquitous. They go unnoticed in the natural, normal flow of things.
So much has been spoken, written, and sung about pain as the vehicle to a marvelous experience of healing, even about the reality being beautifully beyond imagination, that it must be true. How wonderful to have that lifeline to hold on to when things are falling apart. Maybe what is happening is that things are just in the midst of falling together.
In general, giving up sounds like defeat. In sobriety, giving up is a gift. Think surrender, letting go. And in the process, finding every wonderful thing waiting on the other side. This week’s guest post from Laura McKowen’s wonderful blog speaks to this idea rather beautifully.