Acceptance - Miriam's Perspective
Many of you who were introduce to the program where coming from a place of defeat rather then a place of growth. Shame and guilt was an overwhelming feeling. The first thing that we take from the call (support call for spouses of addicts) is the serenity prayer which contains one verse that jumps out at us: "Hashem, grant me the serenity to accept the things I can not change."
Learning to accept the things that we perceive as wrong can be a difficult task for many of us.
Often we have been brought up to accept that it is normal to feel guilty about our actions and that by doing so we will make everything seem alright within ourselves.
Even though we might feel that we have a reason to make up for the choices we have made, it is much more important for us to learn how to deal with them in a healthy and positive way, such as through forgiveness and understanding.
When we can look back at our past and really assess what has happened, we begin to realize that there are many dimensions to our actions. While feeling guilty might assuage our feelings at first, it is really only a short-term solution. It is all too ironic that being hard on ourselves is the easy way out. If we truly are able to gaze upon our lives through the lens of compassion however, we will be able to see that there is much more to what we do and have done than we realize.
Perhaps we were simply trying to protect ourselves or others and did the best we could at the time, or maybe we thought we had no other recourse and chose a solution in the heat of the moment.
Once we can understand that dwelling in our negative feelings will only make us feel worse, we will come to recognize that it is really only through forgiving ourselves that we can transform our feelings and truly heal any resentment we have about our past.
Giving ourselves permission to feel at peace with our past actions is one of the most positive steps we can take toward living a life free from regrets, disappointments, and guilt.
The more we are able to remind ourselves that the true path to a peaceful mind and heart is through acceptance of every part of our lives and actions, the more harmony and inner joy we will experience in all aspects of our lives.
For further reflection on this topic and more, I invite you to join me on the spouses call every Monday and Thursday at 9:00 pm est.