Recovery has been a wildly unpopular choice—quite agitating to those threatened by the idea that there is something wrong—other than only my existence. My healing has been labelled a lie, a show, an attack, a war, a story to get attention. I hear this frequently from others in recovery-“Recovery is a deal-breaker and a relationship ender for those with a need for us to stay sick, sad, broken, afraid, and ashamed.” Those are deals worth breaking. The relationships will either heal along with us or they will die natural (but painful) deaths. Are you ready to feel and heal? Nothing like the gift of desperation—the lightning bolt moment in which it becomes unbearably clear that IT cannnot continue. For me, becoming a mother and experiencing the full gravity of two little ones learning about love and family by observing and experiencing US, as we were-that was my invitation to heal. I will not carry on the lies and legacies of dynamics which rely on shaming, shunning, and contracting to cull the herd. I will not pass that on.
I believe in a better story for my children. I choose to learn and do better.
“Pain travels through family lines until someone is ready to heal it in themselves. By going through the agony of healing, you no longer pass the poison chalice onto the generations that follow. It is incredibly important and sacred work”
It stops here. I realize that I regularly share about my loveless family and marriage experiences. But today, I recognize how they are Godless more than loveless. I think that making this distinction could alleviate some of the pain. The brand of love and family which I was raised on and then went on to marry, conflicts with all of my basic needs and core truths. Requirements to be revered(as one might a god or ruler), in control, and at the center, made no allowances for personal differences & preferences,healthy curiosity, open communication, intimate/safe/healthy and sustainable connection. It was killing to my soul and spirit.
Has anyone ever attempted to be your god, not as a source of protection, hope, and comfort—but as THE ONE in charge of punishment and rewards based on how you please them and accommodate their moods and preferences? —entirely self propelled by pride, ego, agenda. ☠️ Spiritual Recovery teaches me all of the ways in which I need a God-centered life more than I need “that”. It is the choice, I have been left to make. Repeatedly. Get on board or pay the price— after you fuck off. I have not been allowed to fuck off in peace. I have tried. There is no peace with people like this. Capitulation or Reprisal. That manner of engagement is not for me nor my children. We will not abide. Love is the boss of us. We are less afraid of the disapproving and wrathful than we are of losing ourselves. Here is a fun saying I heard recently—“God is god and I am not” (and neither are you!!)
Recovery offers choices for living, that the toxic environment left unknown to me. Boundaries, self-love, curiosity, healthy reconciliation and amends with those capable and willing… The list is great and gorgeous and it is a shit-ton of work– learning so late in life, a better way to be in the world. It is tragic that it comes at the price of knowing those to whom I am genetically linked. When I go off script with them, the price is too high. When I stay on script with them, the price is too high. No contact is the saddest last resort. And to anyone suggesting this is easy, lazy, angry, or withholding, well, we remain in different camps and there is literally nothing to do about that except continue recovering and yielding only to a God of my understanding. Fear and shame are no longer my Gods. Those are for the others, to feel and cast and endure.
Recovery from anything, is the most wholesome and badass thing on earth. It is not for everyone. Before you say or do that next thing that is likely to harm another, maybe ask yourself: “Am I doing this because I feel moved to do so, or because I am afraid of what will happen if I don’t?” Anybody who imposes fear or shame is a bully. When possible and safe, we must extricate ourselves– because we matter and Love wins and bullies suck and deserve a lot of space. Waste no time trying to win over the haters.
With my sons, I am explicit and open about how both sides of their family are unwell. Evidence of this can be observed in the collective displays of favoritism and alienation. Behind these tactics are generations who self medicate to numb the pain of living in that way. Unwellness and addiction, often , look well and successful on the surface. Daily/nightly drinking and prescription drugs relied on, to take the edge off, are addiction. Compulsive shopping, cleaning, gossiping, criticising—these are all signs of unwellness.
I do not detail for my sons, the names of those who have been arrested, wrapped their cars around trees, lost jobs, been in and out of rehab or those who fly below the radar with socially acceptable daily numbing cocktails and wine. But they have been informed loosely about addiction, how it has affected our lives, how it starts, gets learned, passed down and how there is always help. There is NO SHAME for needing or seeking help. Shame over unkindness and dishonesty–are the typical reasons an addict needs to drink and drug. Healthy shame comes only from doing badly when we know better and is easily addressed by amending our behavior. Unhealthy shame is a tool used by addicts attempting to off-load and impose on others the pain they refuse to heal. THAT is the poison. Beware little guys. You are surrounded. Remember: we have choices!
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