I was in the midst of my ‘Go to the Water’-Spiritual Discovery Adventure 2016 (which is officially what I’m calling it now), when I realized that Sept 27th represented my 6 month sobriety birthday. The women who brought me up in AA taught me right, and it was Friday night and I was alone in a strange town, so I went and found a meeting. They provided me with a coin, and some wisdom.
The topic was ‘perspective’.
I may have laughed out loud it was so perfect.
And then I sat there for an hour thinking about all the ways that my perspective has changed over the last 6 months. Remembering the times lately when mindfulness of my perspective has helped me get through the hard things.
I reflected on how this big, scary, unwelcome life change has become an opportunity for growth and courage and so much important learning. How the shame and fear about relapse and addiction have mellowed into kindness and acceptance and a gentling towards myself. How lack of control and feelings of victimization have morphed into motivation and intuition. Anger and pain are melting into gratitude and empathy.
There are big moments in life where things that others have said or things you’ve read or heard in a song suddenly make sense to you in a deeper more meaningful way, because now you’ve had an experience that makes it real, makes it personal to you. Like parenthood, there’s no way to imagine or describe or prepare for being a parent. But once you finally get it, there’s something inside of you that clicks into place, like a puzzle piece or a new gear. It’s like a level up!
And the only way to get to the next level is to walk through the big, scary, unwelcome stuff as best we can. To let those hard and awful times strip away what’s not important and help us pay attention to what is. Not to run away from the pain, but to try and become comfortable with the uncomfortable and to embrace the perspective that what I’m seeing right now is not how I will always see it, not how it will always be. It might suck, but it’s important, and let’s see what’s next!
Towards the end of that meeting, a quiet voice shared, ‘I am the sky, and all these things I can’t control are just the weather.’ It felt like a fucking truth bomb.
This divorce, this pain, these hurt people, these difficult decisions are the wind and the clouds and the rain. They will change and pass and return in different patterns. But I will always remain the sky. I am unchangeable. I am me. So let’s find out who she really is and see how very strong she can be.