jump to navigation

Forgiveness? January 12, 2011

Posted by Anonymous Smith in Uncategorized.
Tags: , , , , ,
add a comment

Recently, I got into an argument with a friend and I did something that required me to ask for forgiveness.  Although, both sides were at fault and we both asked each other for forgiveness, this didn’t have the same meaning for both of us.

When I think of forgiveness, I ask for it whole heartedly, and give it freely.  When I forgive someone, especially a close friend, it is done for me, and if I am holding onto something I consciously try to let it go.  The issue becomes past and I move on.  I, in no way have perfected forgiveness, or am an expert at it.  But I think that it is a lot easier to forgive when you are in recovery, since you hope to be forgiven for your many transgressions in your addiction.  And I am always reminded of Matthew 18:21-22 where we learn that we should forgive everyone who sins against us, every time, and not just at our leisure.

My friend is new to Christ and this Christian community and he told me that, although he forgives me, that I need to give him his space.  This has been pretty tough on me, because I am so used to just squashing arguments and moving forward.  This person in the past has been like a brother to me, so it is even more difficult to let things be, but I have respected his wishes, and his boundaries.

The other day I was at church and my friend was there.  And I thought to myself, this is perfect, finally we will get to talk and squash these months of uneasiness and not talking.  To my dismay, he avoided me like the plague, but also at the same time made sure to invite everyone around me to dinner, without making eye contact with me.  It felt blatant, and intentional.

I was hoping that in a new year, and in church, that it would be over.  But I realized that I cannot choose how someone forgives me, or when.  And even though he has said the words, his heart has still not forgiven.  The more I thought about it, I knew that I wanted my timing, and not God’s timing.  So I stepped back, and prayed.

I asked God to give me the will to accept him for how he is dealing with this situation.  I told God about my frustrations with it, and gave it all to Him.  I felt at peace with it, and restored.  Even though I hoped for something better, I released the control I wanted over the situation.  And in the end, I left thinking that even if I am never close friends with this person again, that they continue their walk with God, and he finds peace in his heart.

Inspired January 8, 2011

Posted by Anonymous Smith in Uncategorized.
Tags: , , , , , , ,
4 comments

There is definitely something to be said about just showing up.  I was going to skip a dinner on Sunday, because I was starting my first week of work after a long vacation.  It was a discussion dinner, and the topic was creativity.  As a writer my first instinct should be to go to events like this, but lately I have wanted to seclude myself.   Somehow I went against my nature and attended the dinner.

It was slow going at first, not everyone is a verbal processor, and no one was volunteering answers to any of the topical questions.  Silence is excruciating for me in a group setting.  But a friend of mine was leading it, so I just jumped in to help him out.  I shared about writing and what it meant to me.  There were times where it was just crickets, but as people felt more comfortable they began to share about what they were passionate about it turned into something amazing.

I think that being present, as they say in 12 step speak, is probably the best lesson they teach in program.  I watched people’s demeanor change from shy to animated.  And I realized that as a society we are rarely asked to share about what we love to do.  We are rarely asked to talk about our art, and what it means to us; how it heals us, and fuels us.  And given that opportunity we shine.  We smile in the middle of explaining because we remember a moment when we were creating something that moved our soul, and we don’t necessarily share that moment, but we share why we love to do what we do.

A woman in the group who seamed to be shy was finally asked to share her gift.  None of us in the room really knew what to expect, since when we asked her what she loved, she answered, “playing 19th century piano music.”  I think most of us were not at all impressed, since most of us probably had the latest top 40 song in our head.  But as she began to play Chopin’s Fantasie Impromptu, we were all taken to a different place.  She came alive as she played.  I took a moment to scan the room as I let myself be broken from the trance of her playing, everyone was mesmerized by her talent, and her passion.  No one moved, they were all transfixed on this woman, whose playing was shaking the piano, and our preconceived notions about 19th century music.

As she played I began to formulate a short story in my head.  I felt inspired.  I would have completely missed out on this experience had I let myself stay in seclusion.  I made excuse, after excuse as to why I shouldn’t go to dinner, but for some reason I went against everything that I felt and decided to show up.  There is growth in that.  I am starting to show up for my life again.  It’s strange to know where I was a year ago in my addiction and to see the person I am now, and I am glad that I don’t recognize myself.  The person I knew I didn’t like, and it is great to know that I ultimately had the power to change that person.  I know I am not finished, but seeing my own progress is inspiring, and I hang on to that and it keeps me moving forward. 

*If you would like to hear Chopin’s Fantasie Impromptu please see the attached link.

 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7K4-r5V3cVw&feature=related

You are my Everest! January 2, 2011

Posted by Anonymous Smith in Uncategorized.
Tags: , , ,
add a comment

If you have never done a fourth step in a 12 step program, you will have no idea what it is like.  For you that have, you can commiserate.  I have known so many people that gave up on their 4th step the first, and some even said they tried three times and had given up.  I now understand why.

The 4th Step is to “make a fearless and searching moral inventory of ourselves.”  The first thing that stands out to me is the “fearless” part.  We are asked to go into the dark recesses of our past, and shed light on what we have forgotten, and what we wished we had.  To see our part in everything that has happened to us in our lives, and make peace with it, and move into a new direction.  Sound easy?  I think not.

I have faced so many things head on, I have run 3 marathons, even faced my rapists, but this is something I run from.  I think that what keeps us from healing from our addiction, is our fear of what we will see in the mirror.  The part we have taken in the direction of our lives.  If we stay oblivious and we can continue to blame someone else, be it a relationship, a screwed up family, or being a rape survivor.  These things though tragic and heart breaking are not the end of us.  We are still here, still fighting.  We are in program because we have hope, that we can achieve something better.  We trust God, that “this” is not it, but whatever “it” is, it resides on the other side of the fourth step.

I have to admit, it has been a month and a half since I have looked at my fourth step.  I am in the first stages of it.  I have written out my resentments.  I started out on my moral high horse, and thought that because I had such a great relationship with God, I resented nothing; cut to, 2 hours later and I have 187 resentments, and still counting.  I got out of my own way and was completely honest.  It wasn’t about what looked good, but what was right to say.  It is for no one to see except my sponsor.  It is safe.  But I am at a road block.

Writing out your resentments flows like water, when you open that flood gate.  You add resentment on top of resentment.  You remember hatreds, and past wrongs like they happened yesterday.  You feel justified, you write down things that are petty.  But after all that fun, the hard part begins.  For every resentment you have, you have to write out your part in the situation.  What YOU did in the situation, where you were selfish, or self-centered, and how your actions added to the situation you resented.  Fun, right?

This is where I am at.  The 3rd column of my 4th step spread sheet.  This third column is my Everest.  I am going to be fearless this week and tackle some of it, I don’t know how much, but little by little I am going to climb this mountain.  I can’t stay on this side forever.  I want to see what hope looks like, I want to see what healing looks like on the other side of Everest.

1/1/11 January 1, 2011

Posted by Anonymous Smith in Uncategorized.
Tags: , , , , , , , ,
add a comment

Day ??????

I obviously did what I always do and leave a project when it gets too hard or demanding.  So I have decided to change the way I view this blog.  Before I would vow to write in it every day, and when I wouldn’t it would make it extremely hard for me to get back up and write again.  Today I vow to make no vows.  This is for my healing and not another thing that can be the source of feelings of failure.  I started this blog for me, because I had something to say, and because I thought it would help others in my situation.  Today I write because I need to, and more importantly because I want to.

So to catch you all up on me:

  1. On November 21st I got baptized in the freezing cold ocean.  It was amazing and an inexplicable feeling of peace, and joy.
  2. I finished a program with my foundation where we were able to help a lot of kids on a path to healing.
  3. My mother and I have grown so close, it scares me a bit.  I still have to work on my “waiting for the other shoe to drop” mentality.  But I am enjoying the time.
  4. I learned that even with my strong faith, there was still an area of my life where I didn’t trust God.
  5. But more importantly I am still sober.  It is interesting how that one fact can lead to a drama free update.

So that has been happening, and although I am making no vows or resolutions today I want to share with you my hopes and dreams for the coming year.

  1. I hope that I can expand my foundation so that we can help more kids in need.
  2. I hope that this year my family and friends experience as many, if not more blessings than I did in the past year.
  3. I hope that I continue on my path of recovery with the diligence that I have been seeking it throughout the year.
  4. I hope to strive to grow my relationship with God so that I truly trust Him in all aspects of my life.

Thank you for listening to my ramblings and have a Happy and Prosperous New Year!