My Truth

I was drowning in his addiction

I was drowning in his addiction. It was all consuming. It impacted every part of my life. I didn’t know how to stop the merry-go-round of addict and enabler.

I knew it wasn’t right but I kept going back. Kept waiting for him to hit his bottom. I knew I was hurting myself but I ignoring that part and only focused on him. Seeing myself from the outside, screaming don’t go see him….cut him off….walk away. But I couldn’t hear it.

I would have those thoughts and then think, this is the time. This is when he hits his bottom and we would bounce up from there. That I would walk away and this time he would get sober and stay sober. I’d think back to the good days and want those days back. That if I walked away, I’d miss it and not being part of it.

There’s not only the fact that I prevented him from growing and learning from his actions and the consequences from those actions. But I was also putting myself in harms way. My poor decisions were impacting the world around me and I couldn’t stop it.

Until.

Until I hit my bottom. I walked away and have never looked back. I kept putting one foot in front of the other. Kept making the next right choice for me. I was craving more for me and for my life.

As I worked through this I had to ask myself some hard questions. How did THIS become my life. How WAS it ok with me to not only put myself in this relationship but why did it stay ok? That this is a good as it gets and what I deserved? Was I so lonely that THAT life became ok? Why did I NEED to be needed and being needed meant love. Why did that feel like love? HOW and WHY did my worth become based on fixing someone else. So many hard questions that key to the answers were threaded back in my entire life.

I was drowning in his addiction.

But I’m not drowning anymore. I have bounced up from my bottom. I have found myself. I found it wasn’t ok. I found that that was far from as good as it gets. I found I deserved so much more. I found that it wasn’t that I was lonely, it was that was the path I was on. If it wasn’t him it would have the next guy who was an alcoholic.

I found I don’t need to be needed. I found that love doesn’t have to look like that. I found that my value is not in fixing someone else but in who I am and who I am to God. I found that had I not been there, I wouldn’t be here. I would take my worst day now over my best day there.

And being here, I am finally living into who I was always meant to be. I have a relationship with Jesus Christ. I serve in ways that use my God given gifts and talents. I walk along side others with healthy boundaries. I ‘do life’ with an awesome support system. And I am grateful.

My journey to serenity continues…

My Truth

If Nothing Changes, Nothing Changes

If nothing changes, nothing changes. BUT if something changes and you stick with it….EVERYTHING changes!

I know first hand how that works. In many parts of my life.

If I continued to relate to someone with codependency, that relationship will stay dysfunctional.

If I continued to not have boundaries with someone, I will continue to be run over and feel unheard.

If I continued to be in denial about my health, I would continue to on the path to put myself of a health risk.

I recently read ….Change happens when the pain of staying the same is greater than the pain of change. By Tony Robbins. It’s so true.

Change can be scary. What’s going to happen to me when I get healthy….less dependent….more assertive….speak the truth in love…..forgive them…..take off my mask….forgive myself…..will people like me….will I even like me?

Well let me say when I stepped out of denial with my health because my pain of staying the same was greater than my pain of change. And I made real changes. And stuck to them for the last 5 months, EVERYTHING had changed. I have now lost 47 pounds. My blood sugar and pressure are back in normal ranges. I have more energy. I am no longer in physical pain daily. I am happier. I am more confident.

As far as if others will like me…..I don’t care. It no longer matters to me if others like me or not. I don’t need to know. It’s actually none of my business. The right people will not only like me, they will love me.

And to answer the do I like me question….I love who I am becoming. I finally feel like I am becoming who I was always meant to be. I love serving others in a ministry that walks along side others who are in pain from life. And they have reached that tipping point of staying the same is more painful than pain of change.

Together we work the 12 steps. They are designed to take actions to achieve the goals of recovery – reconciliation with God, with yourself, with others and then serving and giving back….that’s how it works.

And then together we learn the Celebrate Recovery principals to develop new attitudes – attitudes of humility, vulnerability, honesty and gratitude….that’s why it works.

I love being perfectly imperfect. I make mistakes. And then I can correct them. It’s not a success only Journey. And when I fail, I can get back up. Failing just means I’m trying and not standing still.

If nothing changes, nothing changes but if something changes and you stick with it, everything changes!

My journey to serenity continues…

Ps parts of this post is inspired by a Celebrate Recovery lesson. You will find the most amazing people there. To find a meeting near you, go the Celebrate Recovery website.

My Truth

It’s a season, not a sentence…

It’s been far too long since I have written. I have started many posts since my last one but are all unfinished thoughts. Not coming together easily. Which is how writing works for me.

I think I’ve posted about seasons before but I didn’t even go back and look. I write what’s put on my heart. Most often it’s what I need to hear in this moment. And the words just flow out of me. Sometimes so fast that I can’t type fast enough or catch that auto correct changed put to out (that one happens all the time)

So I love to refer to time periods as seasons. I’m in a season of waiting. Or I’m in a season of growth. Or I’m in a season of asking questions.

I love to refer to these times as seasons because it reminds me that these times are not permanent. They change. They bloom. And then they transform into something else. They are still. And then experience new growth. And they even are wonderful and warm and those seasons change too. But again not forever.

I have been in a season, maybe several the last few months. A season of contentment but still wanting more. A season of stillness but still wanting more. A season of what i thought was understanding and great communication but knowing something was wrong. A season of learning to ask for help and learning to accept it.

And now a season of exclusion and not understanding but trusting anyway. This is an opportunity to step back and let someone else work out their pain and hurts without my interference or influence.

And even with how hard this is and how much my heart is hurting,

I MUST remember this it’s a season, not a sentence.

I MUST remember that God is in control.

I MUST remember that while hurt people hurt people, healing people heal people. But it’s only when that hurting person seeks healing.

I MUST remember that what someone thinks or says about me, doesn’t make it true.

I MUST remember that recovery is about progress not perfection.

I MUST remember that 2 people can be in the same experience but see and feel things so differently.

I MUST remember to give grace when I love someone but disagree with them too.

My very first Bible study, 10 years ago now, was The Prodigal God. A 12 week study on the Prodigal Son. My brother teased me that it took 12 weeks to look at 21 Bible verses! But it was a deep dive on looking at everyone in the story. How was the Dad feeling? What was the other brother thinking when his brother returned. Anyway it was a cool study on relationships and feelings.

So I’ve been reflecting on how the Dad must of felt. Giving his son his inheritance and letting him leave. Not understanding or wanting this for his son. Not knowing where he was or what he was doing. Being concerned for his other son’s feelings. Did he watch every day for his son to return.

His must have known that it was for a season and not a sentence. And that seasons change.

My journey continues….

My Truth

Learn to accept an apology…you are never going to get!

I am a self proclaimed nerd. I am one of those people who really enjoys court shows. I have watched Judge Judy basically since it started and before that I watched The People’s Court. And to be completely transparent, I used to even TiVo them when I had cable. And now I watch them on You Tube….I know there is a group for that. =]

I know they are not really ‘real’ and I know the show pays the verdict. But I am fascinated by human behavior and this for me is just some good ol’ people watching.

The case today on Judge Faith was a divorced couple with a 3 year old child. They have taken each other to court 22 times in the last 2 years. Now come on, there is a TON of hurts happening there that is resulting in resentments and prolonged pain.

Judge Faith said the most beautiful thing to them and it made me pause and be so grateful for recovery and the program that I work, everyday. Because I know firsthand what she was talking about.

She said ‘Revenge is for the weak. Do you understand that? Revenge is for the weak. It takes a strong person to forgive and I am telling you right now, your life will be a lot easier because you both feel like you have been wronged. Your life will be a lot easier, if you learn to accept the apology you are never going to get.’

Amen amen amen! Jumping up and down amen!

There is this amazing thing that happens in recovery. It starts with step 1 but then somewhere during the 4th and 5th steps it happens. Only those who are ready and strong to get real and do the work, benefit from this amazing gift.

Something written on your heart, written on your very soul is healed and you experience this sense of peace. You own your part and identify there’s. This incredible what almost feels like a super human ability to accept an apology that you are never going to get.

If you have done your 4th and 5th step, you know what I’m talking about and if you are not there yet, please know that there is hope to heal old hurts of the past. Something that changed you to your core, with the strength that can only be with God’s hand, once again is changed and healed.

Your life will be a lot easier, if you learn to accept the apology you are never going to get.

My journey to serenity continues…

My Truth

That’s not mine….return to sender

I have not written about it in a while but my kids are not talking to their dad. 

It’s a sad situation all around but one I cannot control. It’s sad because everyone is hurting and when people hurt, I feel it deeply too. My heart aches that my boys are hurting and my heart aches that my ex-husband is hurting too. 

My boys see a counselor and continue to work out their feelings and how they want to handle this with their dad. Sorting out their feelings, understanding boundaries and working on life as teenagers and all that brings with it. 

My ex and I have had a decent co-parenting relationship since we divorced up until the boys each decided that they didn’t want to talk or see him anymore. 

On their own, they wrote him a letter. 

I understanding their hurts because I had the same ones. Over time I have gotten to the place that he is who he is. And I stopped having expectations that he is who I needed him to be and just accepted him for the person he is. 

Since being in my program, I have forgiven him for many things and now understand my part too.  

I can not fix the relationship between them. It’s not mine to fix. My ex knows how to push my old Codependent buttons but it doesn’t work anymore. And that frustrates him. 

He called me the other day and there was blaming and finger pointing in my direction. He is not yet in that place to see and own his part.  So he projected all of his anger about the situation at me. 

ITS NOT MINE, RETURN TO SENDER

Part of the serenity prayer comes to mind……and the wisdom to know the difference. I really do not want them to hurt, but this is not in my control. And is not for me to change. 

I encourage the boys to see the humanness of making mistakes. I encourage the boys to give a voice to how they feel and to create boundaries. And we talk about understanding and forgiveness. 

I pray for God will intervene in His timing to make this situation better for everyone. Only in the way He can. I could say more specific requests but it’s not what I want, it’s what each of them needs. Only God knows that and can begin to heal these relationships. So I am lifting this situation up to Him. 

My journey to serenity continues…

My Truth

Your past is meant to guide you……not define you! 

Awesome Celebrate Recovery meeting tonight. One couple celebrated 24 years of recovery today and they shared their testimony. 

It was a beautiful story of love and recovery and how God works in our lives. 

The husband ended their testimony with that events of the past do not define us. This got me thinking…

One part of my life that I am currently working hard on is the work life. 

If you are new to my story in 2015 I was in a relationship with a dry and then active alcoholic. My personal life was out of control and I let it effect my work life. I was demoted at work in July of that year and have been beating myself up ever since. 

I have let that demotion define me and have tried ever since to do whatever I needed to do to regain the trust from the management. Management has changed and I have had 4 positions since. They have moved me as there have been needs in different departments. 

I’m working a step 4 on my work life and working on forgiving myself. I’m working on seeing my value at work and understand that these things are taking me to the next place and it does not define me. 

My journey continues. 

This Girls Journey To Serenity 

PS I painted the picture used in this post. 

My Truth

You don’t heal a broken heart by pretending it’s not broken…

Penn & Teller did a show call Bullshit on Showtime from 2003-2010. I’ve always loved Penn & Teller. The show debunked a wide range of popular misconceptions. From talking to the dead to bottled water to pet love to the end of the world. Adult content for sure. Not for the easily offended.  And while I didn’t always agree with their point of view it was entertaining.

1.01 Season One Episode One was Talkng to the dead. My Dad had just passed away. John Edward was all over TV and I was curious. Knowing it was bullshit but curious. At the end of the episode Penn said ‘You don’t heal a broken heart by pretending it’s not broken’. Which I have never forgotten.

  

My heart is broken from my parents passing. I had lost both my parents by age 39. A blessing to have them so long a I did because know several people who lost their parents when they were teenagers. That fact doesn’t lesson my hurt but gives me perspective. 

My heart is broken from my ex-husband. He is who he is and was unsupportive and selfish. It breaks my heart every time he disappoints our children. Every time he changes plans at the last minute. Every time he says something mean spirited. Every time he says something unkind about me……he hurts our kids, my heart and his long term relationship with our kids. 

My heart is broken from my ex-boyfriend. He lied to me about who he was and what we were together. He told me everything that I wanted/needed to hear. He hurt me emotionally, physically, financially, spiritually and any other kind of ally word. 

My heart is broken from myself. I am mad at myself for allowing my life to get so out of control because of someone else’s addiction. 

I can’t heal my heart by pretending it’s not broken by these things. Talking/writing about these things puts them in the light. Puts them in perspective. Makes them small and not the giant pile of secret feelings in the closet. 

My journey to serenity continues…