Sunday, December 15, 2013
I am wishing you all the blessings of peace and joy that so many of us do not find at this time of year. My first sober Christmas I spent most of the time in bed trying not to think about what everyone else was doing. All my pre AA friends were out partying and I was alone, cold on the inside as well as the outside, scared and so lonely and miserable. For me emotional recovery took a long, long time. I used to be amazed at how others seemed to be bright eyed and bushy tailed in a few weeks, or months and finally even years in the AA programme. My progress has been very slow and painful, but these days I am rejoicing for everything I have been through. I would not change what I am finding now for anything else.
Why it takes some of us so long to let go is a mystery. Perhaps I was so used to thinking that the only way to get anywhere was to fight for it, that I was just unable to surrender. The saving grace for me over those early years is that I did not pick up a drink. I so wanted to 'make things work' and be the sort of person I wanted to be rather than look at who I was and accept that and learn to live within those limits.
I wanted to be healed and travel the world telling others about the wonders and power of God. I wanted to be like those, whose names are on everyone's lips. I wanted to be special.
I discovered what others can do is of no benefit to me - or anyone else. What seems to bring peace is being who I am and finding a way through the darkness that leads to peace and freedom.
I know this is something I say many times but it is the very defects themselves (many of them that I actually thought were my good points) were the very things that were standing in my way. I wanted to be good, I wanted to be spiritual, I wanted to be worthy of God's love.
That old saying about "standing in our own light" applied to me 100% but I could not see it. I could not let go of who I wanted to be and accept who I was. And yet it was at that very point, when I reached it, that things started to improve. Being a failure in everything I held most dear was the point at which I surrendered - long after accepting I was an alcoholic, I reached the place of acceptance of who I was and became willing to let go of trying to make myself be someone else.
Learning to love and accept who I was turned out to be the beginning of learning how to love, accept and forgive. I spent so long trying to be 'good' and 'do the right thing'. I am not saying all that time was wasted because it led me to where I needed to be. I can never make myself good enough. The very best I can do is surrender to a Power Greater than myself and accept what is.
Thankfully pain and suffering finally led me to that place of surrender and forced me to let go.
I accepted and began to love and take care of the lost little me that I was.
These days I never underestimate the power of these two great companions - they can be transformed into the most priceless jewels.