Picture courtesy of Kitchener/rogerstv.com
I haven’t written much in the past three weeks. There has been so much going on I was totally preoccupied and overwhelmed. I was trying to focus-or trying not too-I’m not sure which, on the issues at hand. I just wasn’t able to write. In fact I avoided it like the hot flames of a fire. Writing for me makes life crystal clear. I see the truth. It comes out and I can’t control it. Denial sometimes, is a very comfortable place to exist for me. All warm a cosy like inhabiting the centre of a cotton wool ball. It shields from the noise and the pain. Writing plucks me from that comfort and gives me a good shake. So if this entry appears scattered and incoherent I apologize. That’s the way it is for me today.
I don’t want to revisit the event in detail. I’m tired of talking about it. It’s life. It’s stuff that millions of people go through every day. It’s stuff that I partly created and should have dealt with a long time ago. I hate that it’s taken me forever to face it all. No matter how much my therapist and sponsors tell me “Nicky, you weren’t strong enough then, you are now”, still a part of me feels like a pathetic failure. And now it’s done and I have a big hefty legal bill that I have to figure out how to pay, but it was worth it. I’ve done the biggest right thing of my life and I’ve fought to achieve this goal consistently for eight years. Sometimes I’ve fallen, and realized I would get nowhere if I continued drinking and using, so I stopped.
So now what? I don’t have a plan. I used to always have a plan or a goal or a dream. Coming into recovery I had all these things I needed to fix and this last issue regarding the welfare of my children and my own for that matter, has been dealt with. Properly. Legally. Signed sealed and delivered. The fragments of the wreckage of my past have finally been collected, organized, dealt with and repaired or discarded.
So this morning I sat in front of my therapist in a new space. All the fear is now behind me. I feel like there is this huge warm, crystal clear pool in front of me. I want to dive in, but there is apprehension. What if the future is not better? What if I am incapable of ever living in a sane manner and I recreate the past all over again? What if what’s in that pool is lulling me into a false sense of security and that really life is just shit after all.
But there is also excitement. Wow, look at all that I’ve been through. Look at all I have survived. Look at all I have conquered and salvaged. I now know that I’m stronger than most people. I’m very capable of standing up for myself. There is nothing blocking me anymore. I deserve the warmth, and security and joy that pool will provide. So really I just need to dive in and see what happens next right? It’s time to enjoy the fruits of my exhausting struggle. I am free for the first time in my life!
So I asked my therapist if it’s weird that I don’t actually know what to do with freedom. How do I actually begin to enjoy just being? There has always been so much struggle. Always something to “deal” with, strive for. Now I seem to have come out the other side of the constant thunder storm that has been my life for 39 years. I’ve never been in this place before. It feels strange. I’m used to worry, drama, trauma. Calm, peace and silence are alien to me. What should I do? Should I go back to school? Get a new job? Conquer the world?
“How about doing nothing?” was her answer. “How about learning to just be Nicky. How about learning who Nicky is. Why is it necessary to keep wanting, getting, having?” I guess it’s not necessary. I guess when all you have ever done is struggle you don’t know anything else. You gain momentum and you push and you push to survive. Today however, I realized that I had let it all go. I’ve forgiven myself and everyone else too. Could this be the peace and contentment we hear about in recovery rooms?
I don’t know about anyone else, but it takes more than 12 step groups for me to become a functional, rational human being with a healthy mind. Don’t get me wrong. 12 step groups and programs have saved my life. They opened the door to the recovery process for me. They have reignited the spiritual being that I am. Through them I learned that seeking outside help is the way to go to achieve the ultimate recovery for me and I’m so grateful for the people who were wise enough to know that. Because of that wisdom shared by the forefathers of AA, I have sought help from doctors, psychiatrists, therapists and solicitors (or lawyers in America) and today, I’m the sanest, healthiest, and freest version of myself I’ve ever been. My Higher Power has a plan for the new Nicky, and yeah I’m diving into that pool and I’m going to savor every moment of this new adventure. Bring it on!