Wednesday, 04 January 2012

A Few Pearls Learned the Hard Way

by Dov (See all authors)

Someone wrote:

Recovery is just like the chazal about Torah - it's as difficult to acquire as precious pearls and as easy to shatter as glass.... I must re-inspire myself and retrain myself to let Hashem in all the time.

Dov Replies:

Here are a few things from a screwball who has learned a few things the hard way. And I mean all that - (1) I am a screwball, (2) I have only learned a few things, and (3) I learned them the hard way. It is not 'humility', nor purposeful 'self-deprecation' - just the facts, as I see them. If these facts about me make it hard for you to accept what I share here as important, so be it.

OK. So, I think you might be sitting in the driver's seat way too much for your own good. I also think you are trying very hard to work the steps and recover... that is, trying very hard to do them your own way: alone. As you wrote: "re-inspire yourself"? "Retrain yourself"? How does one do that? Haven't we always been doing just that? Isn't that all our stories alone out there till now - just out on a limb alone in the cold with our rather weak and hard-of-hearing G-d, and failing?

Most recovering people I have met agree that they could not have worked the steps alone. They needed to be part of a group, and in real life. Maybe the virtual relationships will work for your (non-virtual) problem. But what you wrote just reminds me too much of the way I'd often talk about recovering - basically on my own. I don't know - maybe you already go to meetings regularly, make multiple phone calls daily, and speak to real people about your desires in simple honest detail... If you do, I'd suggest looking at it more closely and seeing if you are still protecting or hiding something important. If you do not, I suggest that you consider giving it a try. Exactly what do you really have to lose at this point?

I also think you are demanding/expecting what is a bit too close to 'perfection' out of yourself. What are we, after all? Strong? Brave? Smart? Hah. Most of the things I have done in addiction where simultaneously weak, fearful, and ridiculous. I see that in the words you wrote: "must"? "all the time"?

How about, "it would be better for me if I..." instead of "I must", and instead of "all the time", you can try saying "I hope to let Hashem into my life twice today. Once in the morning, and once in the evening after I come home. Twice would be miracle enough!... Maybe I'll go for once, first. I will try to do that today with Your assistance. (Then I'll see about the next day when tomorrow is over!)"

These are just suggestions. If I am coming off as a pushy pain, sorry. I don't mean to. I'm a bit tired. Maybe that's it...