For the first time in 64 days (since getting sober) I feel good. No scratch that. I feel GREAT! Physically I don’t feel great (back problems, knee problems, headache) but emotionally I feel great! And considering I’ve been going through some serious depression lately, to feel great is awesome.
Today has been a day full of realizations too. It’s been an awesome, amazing, great day! And I still have all these shit storms (love that saying that someone on Twitter mentioned to me the other day so I stole it!) going on in my life but I chose to have a good day anyways. The keyword there is chose…it’s definitely all about me choosing my attitude!
So, anyways…here is my day in a nutshell.
The Serenity Prayer
For some reason the serenity prayer kept going through my head today. If you don’t know it, here it is:
God grant me the serenity
to accept the things I cannot change;
courage to change the things I can;
and wisdom to know the difference.
(just for today…as we say in AA)
It was a huge reality check for me today because I’ve been having some issues with lots of little things that I can’t change setting me off. Today, a few of those things were happening again and as the serenity prayer went through my head it dawned on me that it’s not doing me any good to get frustrated/angry/upset over the stuff (like the heat for example) because I cannot change them. So, instead I chose to just accept that I couldn’t do anything about these things. Funny how as soon as I accepted I had to just deal with them because I couldn’t change them, my attitude totally changed! (hmm funny how that works isn’t it? LOL)
I don’t know why this hit home today but for some reason it really dawned on me that for the first time in my life I finally feel like I belong – AA has gave me that sense of belonging that I’ve been searching for my entire life. For once, for the first freaking time in my life, I don’t have to pretend to be somebody I’m not! You see, I’ve always played these roles throughout life to please other people, to fit in, to have people like me, etc.
Here are a few examples I’m talking about:
- I went to college because that’s what my dad wanted. Not me! I had no desire to go. I wanted to do something completely different with my life but I pretended to understand and agree with him and his reasoning for not wanting me to do the other thing (cosmetology school). But I put on this front and played a role of an academic scholar…until I had to tell him I had the choice of leaving on my own or I was being kicked out because of my grades (guess you probably know why my grades were so bad – yep, because I was always drunk or too hungover to make classes).
- When I’m with a group of people I always pretend to agree with things people say (if I don’t really agree with it) just so they ‘like’ me.
- and the list could go on and on!
Yep, I’ve put on so many fronts over the years. Even with my own family – always pretending I was/am doing way better/more successful than I really am – I put on fronts and pretend to be someone I’m not. It’s been really tiring trying to be someone you’re not and trying to please everyone! So when I walked into that first AA meeting and was greeted by a room full of women that knew exactly where I was at in life (rock bottom with my drinking/alcoholic way of life) it suddenly dawned on me I didn’t have to pretend anymore. They knew me without knowing me – if that makes any sense.
And today out of the blue it really hit home that I’m finally learning to be myself around people (heck I’m just starting to learn who I really am). I’m learning I don’t have to agree with something someone says just because I want them to like me. I’m learning that we all have different opinions and crazily people still like me even if I don’t agree with them! (what a concept right?) It’s crazy awesome to be in a group of people and making friends that know the real me – the deep dark secrets of that secret life I was living, the alcohol, the lying, the manipulating, the waking up next to a strange man or waking up in a strange place, the driving while drunk, the this and the that – and they still LIKE me and want to be my friend. It just feels really really good to finally belong and to belong in a group that I don’t have to be pretend!
I hope that this feeling great continues. As I mentioned above, I know it’s about choosing my attitude and that I’m the only one that can choose to be happy…regardless of the shit storms going on in my life. So, that’s what I’m going to practice every day now – choosing my attitudes!
Until next time…
photo credit: jaylopez