A few years back, I could not have imagined myself sitting in a convention focused on addiction recovery, but here I am. And I'm grateful, because the alternative was bleak. I didn't understand how sick I was — mind, body and soul — until I was out of active addiction and immersed in active recovery.
At events like this, I am reminded that I am uncomfortable in large groups and unexpectedly shy. So I fight with my inclination to use, and call on all of the tools I learned to just BE. I don't need to stay in a blissful little anesthetized cloud all the time. Living my life free and clear of substances means learning to FEEL my feelings, all of them, and know that no feeling is permanent. It is human to learn to experience feelings and be okay with it.
So maybe, just for today, I meet people one at a time. Take it easy, and remember that it's a privilege to know people who are walking the same path as me. Surely that is something to talk about and celebrate.
My friend Gil texts me a message every morning, and this one seems fitting for today: "I value myself today. I value everything about me. I am finding people who value me as much as I value myself. I am attracting people who treat me with love and respect."*
*Excerpted from Time for Joy — Ruth Fishel
Photo credit: Sean Geraghty on Unsplash