I think maybe we are all recovering from the moment we are born. From the moment we are pushed from that warm, all enveloping, safe space out into this cold, hard world, we are recovering. Finding our way. Forging our path. And the thing is, recovery never stops. Hopefully.
We are all in recovery from something. Life is hard, but we don’t have to be.
I am recovering from alcoholism. But I am also recovering from childhood and being a teenager and relationships – wow. So many friend and family and romantic relationships to recover from. Throw in depression, can’t forget that beast. Anxiety too! OOH OOH Infertility and IVF. Then having twins! Births. Deaths. Sickness and sadness. Everything is something to recover from when you think about it.
We can find our people. We can find our place. It may take years. Decades. So many losses and so much pain, but we can find our people. Because that’s what recovery is. Connecting with other people and working through our shit.
So then we can start to recover. There will be more pain. But then, there can also be all encompassing joy. Joy like you’ve never known existed.
Once you are on the road to lifelong recovery, there is absolute freedom in acceptance. The freedom to change. The freedom to love and love with all your might without withholding for fear of being hurt, because you’ve been hurt and hurt badly. Because your heart has been broken and chances are it may be broken again.
Hell, none of us would ever have pets or kids if we didn’t expect heartbreak.
Like crazy foolish hearts, we ask for the inevitable pain, because with such great pain also comes the greatest joy we could ever know. The love. It all comes down to love. Giving and receiving love is what we crave. Connection. Pain comes with the territory. It’s all part of the circle.
I like to believe that there is no finish line in recovery. Otherwise I might get to a point and say, HEY I AM DONEZO. Graduated. Cross that bad boy off my list, I am good to go. That’s a scary prospect for a gal like me, a Virgo, who likes things neat and tidy and summed up and crossed off. You don’t get to cross off recovery.
Life is HARD, but we don’t have to be.
I listened to a WTF podcast recently with Henry Winkler who spoke about living with Tenacity and Gratitude and of course I keyed in because that is how I want to live. With tenacity and gratitude. Like the Fonz. Ehhhhhhhhhhhhhh.
Life will beat us down if we let it. It’s a fight some days just to get out of bed, but we do. We do because people are counting on us. We are counting on us.
You know that saying, “be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle”? Yeah, well, apply that to your life and I guarantee you will instantly find the compassion. Apply it to your own life. Apply it when you look in the mirror, when you look at your kids. When you look at your partner or your boss or the lady ordering a half caf semi glazed orange fappichwhippo when all you really want is a large black coffee. That lady really needs her thing too.
And then some perfect days you just look around and you breathe it all in and give thanks to the universe for your hard, complicated, absolutely beautifully rich, wonderful life. Even on really shitty days, you can still find the gratitude. Ehhhhhhhhhhhhhhh.
Time is perfect. We are exactly where we should be in this moment. SO if you are in pain, feel it. Really honor it and feel it and let it move through you. If you can get to a place where you are grateful for even the pain, you are in a good spot. Then you can move on to acceptance and maybe even joy. I’ll bet joy is coming. Feeling all the feelings is the key. Moving through experiences instead of just trying to get over them. There is no shortcut.
I’ve been bitter. I’ve been hard. Life is easier when I accept that we are in this lifelong quest of human recovery. Together. One day at a time. We can do anything for 24 hours. And the best part is there are way more good days than bad. There’s way more joy than sadness. When you look for it, it’s out there. It really is.
Make the effort. Do the hard work. Life is hard, but we don’t have to be.
See also –
Beauty and the Beast Named Anxiety
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