staying power

I was so tired last night.  That statement is mostly true 100% of the time these days.  I have begun to realize I will be tired for the next five + years.  And its ok. I’m ok with being tired.  It beats the hell out of hungover, ashamed, afraid or grief-stricken. Tired is honest.  I earned it.  I deserve it.  I kinda won the tired jackpot when I chose a family.  And I continue to choose them over and over again…Yet, sometimes I need to remind myself.  Because sometimes when I’m so tired and crabby and useless I feel like someone DID this to me.  Dooped I tell ya’!  I fall victim to the feelings I’m having and I become those feelings.  Aristotle said, “I think, therefore I am.”  I say, “I feel, therefore watch yourself!”

Feelings are great indicators.   I read a new book and recognize an internal truth that I guess I always knew.  I do something out of line with my word or commitment and I feel off. I feel giddy and so I skip around.  I feel hungry and so I eat.  I feel like crying and so I explore that.  Feelings are funny in that they can be completely real and simultaneously useless.  They aren’t always the facts of the case:  I feel like she doesn’t want to be my friend anymore.  I feel like you’re not listening to me. I feel fat.  I feel, I feel, I FREAKING FEEL!  My whole existence prior to recovery was about not feeling and then sober for 3 years; feeling  better.  What I came to find was that ‘feeling better’ is both elusive and inconclusive research.  The hunt is never-ending.  My sponsor suggested I get off the merry-go-round and work towards getting better at feeling.  Huh?  You mean to say, stay or remain in the feeling?  Stick around like the sand and let the waves be the feelings.  They come, they go, rise and fall and I’ll just, stay.

Fight, flight or freeze.  Which one is your go to in conflict?  Author Danny Silk suggests we usually do one of these mostly, if not attempt all of them.  I’m a flight attendant.  Good news for my family is that my distance in flight has significantly scaled back in the last five years.  I no longer skip town, or states.  I usually retreat to the basement or to the bathroom.   Staying power is good/hard work.  To me, it looks and sounds like, I’m willing to find the solution I’m willing to ‘move toward connection in the relationship’. And sometimes the solution doesn’t come to me until I’ve had some good flight time.  I can pull back the curtains and look underneath the bed, the light shines in and reveals my dust bunnies, my fears, my ick.  I coax them out with tenderness and wrap them up like pigs in a blanket.  We go back to the conversation.   We share ourselves and we find a way to go on.  This has taken many tries and do overs and apologies.  Its that whole, growth is messy scenario.  On some occasions even my best attempts are  wobbly and mismatched.   Think Jenga.

Oh, and when I’m really tired I often think, I have no other choice than to be miserable.  I feel choice-less.  I see the numbers 4 and 3 and 0 in consecutive order and I think- what other feeling than pain and misery could one choose at this time? At this un-godly hour of the night?!  And yet I still have a choice.  To either be the feeling or not.  To choose misery or to not.  Even when the choices seem unappetizing or boring they are available to me.  I’m just saying, often I don’t feel like there are any other choices.  Getting past that feeling is like finding your way in the dark.  And frankly, where I live it  is still very much so, dark at 4:30 in the morning.  Yet, there are hand rails like prayer and sibling affection and baby coo’s  to help lead you up the steep steps into choice and freedom.   It’s good/hard work.   Drag your sorry ass up those steps one foot at a time if need be.  It’s perfectly o.k to have a sorry ass.  I think it just means sorry, I’m not wearing pants.

Happy Feeling Feelings Day Friends.  Its all good/hard.

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One thought on “staying power

  1. It took me a lot longer than you to realize that I wasn’t abnormal for my feelings and fears. Pretty common stuff, as it turns out. And yes, just cuz i feel it, doesn’t make it true. Discerning fact from fiction was the big challenge. It does tell me something is off; now inside or outside??? It’s usually inside, but being tired is just being tired. Get some help if you can and take a long nap — for a day or two. You deserve it, sugar beet. Pulling and praying for you always, S

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