It’s been a long time since I have blogged—over a year. I am happy to report in that time, I have stayed sober, continued with my meetings, stayed with my therapist and have joined a women’s addiction group that meets twice a month. It ahas been a long journey with lots of growth and discovery. Nothing major has changed- no divorce, no moves, no new jobs, no more children, and thankfully no deaths.
What this gift of sobriety has given me in this lull is the ability to take a look inward and to see what illusions I had that I’ve learned to abandon. One of the most significant ones is that for decades, I subscribed to a damning, malicious, All- Powerful God the Father. I have struggled in my recovery to redefine who my HP is. But before I could redefine him, I had to figure out what I thought he was, break that down, determine what I wanted, breathe, and seek.
Digging deep, I learned from a young age, that God was looking down at me from the great beyond and was judging every step I took, every breath I took, every move I made, every smiled I faked (cue Police music here). I lived in fear that if I died, I would surely go to hell. I hadn’t done enough good in my time here on earth. I sought out my flaws and imperfections, I constantly compared myself to others- looks, clothes, money, job, house, car- and I always fell short. I just didn’t know how to live. I thought I did, but when I would get on a roll, self-sabotage would set in. I believed for some time, that good things only happened to good people, and since I perceived myself as bad, anything positive must have been a fluke- even God wasn’t perfect in that concept.
Breaking down that illusion has come at a price. I left the church I attended giving up my role as Cathechism Director. This was a risky move as I am in a small town and people (including family) talk. My kids still attend with my husband, and it was a fine line to walk as to why mom didn’t have to go and they did. I knew they needed to have some faith base, and this was one I was going to have to turn over to my husband while I began my quest. I wandered into a few different, more progressive churches but I still didn’t find what I was searching for. So I turned inward.
I’ve had to flush out years of doctrine that simply wasn’t true: Despite what I was dictated, I can be a wife, a mom, a teacher, but I can also be intelligent, kind, steadfast in my beliefs, a leader, respected and most importantly, wrong without shameful feelings. I also had to recognize that I may never have a big bang moment where the bush is on fire and a loud booming voice directs my steps. That irritated me. I wanted to believe someone was going to rescue me and that if I just did the next right thing, this powerful moment would happen, the stars would align, life would fall into place and I could sing kumbaya.
But alas. No fire extinguisher was needed. I had to go on living and navigate my way through this spiritual tango. However, I am grateful it hasn’t been a quick, swift redefinition. I would have missed some details along the way. I needed to look at the whys of how I thought and to figure out where the Truth was and discard the rest. I had to give myself permission to think very differently from how I was raised and to leave the guilt on the shore. I had to embrace my HP as something greater than myself but with good intentions for me. I now see my HP as a powerful surge of energy that helps to align and synchronize events for the best possible outcome. I can honestly say that jealousy which used to run my mind is a thing of the past. I really believe now that we all have gifts and talents. When someone wins an award, it isn’t because I am not good enough, but rather it’s because she is! That award isn’t in my plan and to yearn for that is, in short, wasted energy and a distraction for when my time will come. If I look to my universe as being molecules of energy bumping into each other and finding like-willed molecules to join, I will have achieved happiness- and to some degree a deeper joy. Most of all, I have peace. I have discovered I don’t need to have an answer RIGHT NOW! The answer will evolve and if I am good-intentioned, a positive result will ensue.
Today, dropping the illusions of what used to be has been freeing. I breathe deeper, I sleep better, my blood pressure is low, I can stop and feel my feelings, I step back now and look for deeper meanings rather than react. In other words, I leave the spoon on the rest and let the pot cook itself.
It feels good to blog again. I hope all is well in your universe. Feel free to drop a comment about your spiritual journey. I’d love to hear about it.