Tag Archive | AA

June 12th: Trust

June 12th

I loved my marriage, I loved my husband, but this did not mean that I had trust in him.

Time-after-time, during my husband’s long periods of addiction, he would break promises, lie, and contradict his own words with his unhealthy behavior.

And even though this happened numerous times, I would somehow put it out of my mind and believe that the next time he would get it right… the next time my love for him would overwhelm him and he would be a better man for me.

But the truth is, we often love people that we cannot trust and may never be able to trust.

I did not know going into my relationship with my husband that there would be a separation of these two things… I found out about our mounting trust issues long after I had already committed myself and my heart to him.

Today I still find it hard to accept that I can’t always trust someone I love but, I have to see the reality of the situation.

If I cannot depend on someone I love to follow through on their promises, then I have to stop trusting blindly, and without hesitation, set boundaries, and even choose to keep my distance, knowing that the inconsistencies of their actions and words have created a scenario where I can love them… but cannot trust them… and therefore I must care for and protect myself.

“Dear God, help me to trust myself. Help me to set clear boundaries with those I love for my own sanity and balance.”

June 11th: Friendships and Goals

June 11th Goals

When I suffered the painful setback of my divorce I was so full of despair that my goals dissipated.

Everything I had been working for seemed pointless without the love of my husband and so… depressed and weary… I let everything go.

It seemed the smallest thing was too difficult to do:

Sleep.

Shower.

Eat.

Work.

My days were full of endless sadness.

I was fortunate to have comfort from a work colleague, a woman who became like a mother figure to me, who would see me each morning and say, “We just have to get through today. And… if you can’t get through today… just get through the next few minutes. I will be right here.”

I would go in my room and try to teach my students, then excuse myself, walk across the hallway, where she would walk out of her own classroom, wipe the tears from my eyes, hug me close, and then say, “Just until the bell rings. Just make it until the bell rings. I’m right here if you need me.”

I cannot thank her enough for being my strength when my strength was gone.

She got me through those first very painful months and each time I hit a small goal:

Making it through a day without crying…

Sleeping through the night…

Being able to keep a meal down…

She was there to cheer me on.

And when my goals became bigger:

Going back to school for my Master’s Degree…

Writing…

Buying my first home…

She continued to offer me support.

During times of despair we need someone to champion us… to see our small progress as we struggle to overcome pain.

Today, I offer my own experience and strength, and hope that my words, my presence, offers comfort to those who need it.

“Dear God, help me to give my compassion to those in need. Help me to be present for those who long for comfort.”

June 10th: Being Grounded in Reality

June 10th Being Grounded in Reality

Often times my head is so focused on future events that I forget to remain grounded in the present.

It seems sometimes that my life becomes a succession of: the next thing I have to do, the next big event, or a magical time when everything will be just as it should be.

Well, that isn’t reality.

Reality is right here in front of me.

It is paying attention to my fingers on the keyboard as I type: focusing on putting my thoughts into words. It is me… here in the moment… savoring the time I have right now.

When I find myself living “up in my head” or thinking about numerous chores, commitments or events on my horizon…

I must center myself and maintain balance by bringing myself back into the present.

Note a cool breeze… a bird as it flies past… a neighbor waving hello….

because this is life… and life moves quickly… and I must live for these moments… they may be the only ones I have…. I must find joy in the day-to-day.

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“Dear God, help me to stay grounded in the present. Help me to be in the moment and cherish what joys I find there.”

June 9th: Resentments

June 9th-Resentments Lately I have been struggling with resentments. It happens from time-to-time and even when I am working really hard to stay balanced or focused on my spiritual footwork, situations… relationships come along that create problems. In the past, I chose to hold resentments… for a day… a month… a year…. unwilling to admit that it damaged me… my self-esteem… my self-worth… my peace… my balance: and not the person or situation I was resenting. In fact, they usually continued on in their own life, most often blissfully unaware of my perceived slight, as I reverted farther into my shadow self and allowed my anger and frustration to consume me… obsessed with how I had been “wronged…” how I had been “damaged…” how I deserved an amends. Today, after many years of spiritual footwork, I take time to calm down from the situation and ask myself “How important is it?” and if I find it is really something silly in the grand scheme of life… I choose to let it go. However, when I am truly suffering through a more serious struggle, I find myself able to ask for clarity from my Higher Power, consult with a trusted friend, and then… when the time is right, express my feelings regarding the particular situation or the person I am feeling resentful towards. I cannot be sure that everything will be resolved through the conversation, but I can be sure that my side of the street is clean, my voice has been heard, and that if I am unable to settle the matter at that moment… more will be revealed by my Higher Power over time and maybe… lead me to resolving my own pain. – “Dear God, help me to have peace of mind in a moment of frustration. Help me to find relief from my resentments and trust in your guidance.”

June 8th: Obsession

June 8th-Obsession

Sometimes my mind becomes so distracted by a problem that I fall into obsessive thinking.

Unable to control my thoughts, my mind races through scenarios, until I have imagined every worse case outcome and have become triggered and worn by my mental toying.

If I allow myself to become overwhelmed by my obsessive thinking soon… it escalates to obsessive talk.

I will search out anyone and everyone and find a way to bring “my obsession” into the conversation.

Unfortunately, this is me allowing my mind to hold me hostage and… this tires the person having to deal with my runaway thoughts and feelings… and leaves me to “spin my wheels” since nothing can be reasoned out or accomplished when my mind is inundated by negative noise.

It doesn’t matter what device I have devised to keep me from my obsessive thinking:

A command I say to myself to “STOP…”

A rubber band on my wrist to snap each time I allow my mind to obsessively wander…

A hiatus from social media that may be triggering my obssession…

Or a visit with a trusted mentor to gather strength and support when I am feeling vulnerable and triggered.

Despite what my emotions tell me… I can choose not to engage in obsessive thoughts.

Obsession will not solve my problems and allowing obsession to control me will leave me in a poor mental and physical state and lead me to my “shadow self.”

“Dear God, help me to pay attention to my thinking and let go of my obsession. Help me to calm my mind and contemplate my problems when I am emotionally ready to do so.”

June 7th: Fear and Unhealthy Relationships

June 7th- Letting Go

I was in a constant state of anxiety during my marriage.

Part of the problem was my own internal fears that I brought into the relationship:

I was afraid of losing my husband and being abandoned and…

I was afraid of being neglected or seen as unlovable.

These were beliefs that I had carried with me since childhood and nurtured by choosing unhealthy relationships that amplified my negative self-talk.

So, when these fears came true during my divorce, they once again validated my own internal fear: that I was not worthy of love.

Today, there have been times when I have gone back to the same type of relationship as my marriage, not because I want fear and dysfunction in my life but, because the unhealthy relationship is familiar: it is what I have been programmed to accept; fear… anxiety… drama… despair.

But I have learned through spiritual footwork that the other part of this relationship problem is the people I choose to get involved with…

Their actions cater to my own negative beliefs.

Their unreliable behavior leads me to always believe, even when they are on their best behavior, that there must be a catch and that sooner or later they will let me down again.

Basically… it is my shadow-self seeking another shadow-self to recreate patterns from my past.

A way of playing out negative beliefs… or becoming lost in the fantasy that this time… it will somehow… magically… be different and all work out.

But it is never different.

An unhealthy relationship is an unhealthy relationship.

If I choose to engage with someone that brings out my fears, my short comings, I am allowing myself to be controlled by my negative beliefs.

If I choose to keep someone in my life, and accept short bursts of attention and validation to make me feel “better in the moment” then I am selling myself short on what I can truly expect in a relationship with a kind, loving person who is willing to commit to me fully, and does not trigger my fear or my shadow self through inappropriate and unhealthy behavior.

“Dear God, help me be willing to let go of unhealthy relationships. Help me to be strong enough to walk away from what is hurting me.”

June 6th: Triggers and Perspective

The Pacific Ocean tourism destinations

Today was a difficult day.

I was challenged.

I was triggered.

I was emotionally worn and unable to stay as calm as I would have liked.

But even in my worst moments I was able to do two things:

One, explain to the people I love and care about that I was having a bad day, that I was having a hard time controlling my emotions, and that I would do my best not to take my frustration out on them.

And two, I was able to stop several times and say to myself: How important will this be a month from now? Six months from now? A year? Five years?

And find solace in the fact that what I was so worked up about today, would pass into oblivion in a very short amount of time.

It is so important to find evidence of spiritual growth on days that I am triggered.

Everyone has bad days… everyone struggles with emotions.

I need to be kind to myself and realize that triggers are part of life… challenges we all face… and I must continue to find how to face each… with grace and dignity.

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“Dear God, help me to surrender. Help me to let go of what is out of my control and accept that today, I have done my best and that tomorrow, I will be able to start fresh again.”