March 21 (Sacred Day)

“WHAT ARE YOU WILLING TO GIVE UP, IN ORDER TO BECOME WHO YOU REALLY NEED TO BE?”

(Elizabeth Gilbert)

Good question, no?

I like that it says “need” instead of “want”

I want a lot of things but need very little, and  this gets clearer and clearer to me as I let go of things.

This year has been a lesson in letting go. Selling the house, my son moving out, moving into a small apartment, letting go, letting go. Downsizing involves so much letting go, giving away, selling ,sorting ,deciding and it is really exhausting. I was exhausted for a very long time after moving and I think I am really just starting to pull out of that.

In the same way I let go of things I also adopted new things, a yoga practice, meditation, a habit of binge TV watching, a need to get rid of more, do with less, decide what is truly important. An introspective mindset that is different for me. Realizing my limitations and trying to work past them, succeeding (or not) and continuing to slog on

“FIRST THE GESTURE THEN THE GRACE”

(Karin L. Burke from her blog Whiskey and Porn for Everyone)

It’s all in the action,isn’t it? The doing. Without the doing the grace cannot follow, at least for me. I learn by doing. Always have. Once I am willing to take the necessary steps to actually DO something it gets done, but I am a procrastinator by nature so doing is not always easy. I think about things a long time, research, plan, plot and make small forays into action but never really deliver the goods.

Until I do.  That’s me…..strugge, struggle, whine, sorry for myself, can’t do it, must do it.ok, WILL do it and then…

Phew. Grace.

I don’t know what happened on Thanksgiving day 2010, except that I heard a voice, loud and clear that said I was going to die like this.

My bottom, my sacred bottom.

I don’t know what happened on March 21, 2011. The stars aligned, I guess. I had been researching and complaining and feeling sorry for myself and miserable and scared for 4 months (longer, truthfully, but I didn’t KNOW before that Thanksgiving), and on that day, the gesture was made, the grace won.

My first, my Day One…my big deal.

And everything that has happened since has been a progression, not always great or fast or easy or anything else but forward….always forward. Incrementally better. 

That is what I was willing to give up to get what I need. I wanted to continue to drink, but I needed to stop. The freedom of these last three years has been unbelievable. It may not look like that on the outside, but inside? a sea-change. I always refer to my head as my monkey mind, the way it swirls and twirls and gets in my way, but that’s ok. That monkey that was riding around on my back is gone. The one that told me I had to drink, that it could never be better, that this was how I was going to die.  I believed that monkey until I shook it off and realized there was another way.

What happened that night, when I came home from a 12 step meeting and it occurred to me that if I went to bed, right now (9:30 pm), that I would have made it through a day without a drink? What happened every day since that day that has allowed me to keep that sacred day one? I can answer the second part easier because I know the work I have put into maintaining my sobriety. The first day? Something outside of me for sure, me but not me. When I look back I have to come to the conclusion that the universe has my best interests at heart, no matter how I have felt in the past. That if I stay aligned to my highest self, the flow, a HP, whatever you want to call it, that things will continually get better as I take action towards some future…

I have a friend who, on  her gratitude list, always says that she is grateful  that “she has no idea how good life can get”.

Me too. Me too.

(If you are reading this and think you might have a problem with alcohol, please know that I understand. That I am happy to help if you’d like to contact me.  I don’t only write about sobriety, but I would not be able to write anything if I wasn’t sober.  Most importantly, please know that there IS a solution, that you don’t have to feel so desperate and defeated , sick and sad anymore.

And know that you are NEVER alone, not ever.)

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7 Comments

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  1. Ahh, how wonderful. Congratulations, Michele, on the 3rd anniversary of that sacred day.

    xx/Susan

  2. Hippo birdies two ewes!!!! Great post. Love you.

  3. When I look back I have to come to the conclusion that the universe has my best interests at heart, no matter how I have felt in the past.

    I needed to read that today! GREAT post, GREAT accomplishment!

  4. I didn’t realize it was your 3rd anniversary, Michele. Congratulations!!!!

  5. Congratulations! It is a day truly worthy of holding sacred!

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