Love is what I got.
As the 5th Step ick begins to, slowly but surely, wash away, I’m left with the glitter and the gold.
That relief I was hoping for, well, I didn’t get that. But, I did get something else, something even better. I got a new set of eyes. All those things and people I used to look on with such disgust; the blame, shame, anger, manipulation, narcissism, that I used to wield , they all melt at my sides and fall away. And, all those little things that have bothered me in sobriety seem inconsequential.
If I’m given this opportunity to “start over” then, why hold on to all that garbage in the here and now. All those things that are so intricately linked to old, bad behavior, don’t serve me here, in this moment. And, completing my 5th Step has allowed me to see that change is possible. It requires awareness and work. But, after looking at the guts of my past, the maintenance work in the present moment hardly seems work at all if I can say that I will live in a better way than I was living before.
As I lay huddled next to Lars in bed, clad in pajamas, watching movies, he nodded off to sleep. I looked at him for a moment and realized that I wasn’t thinking. I could just feel my love for him rising off my skin like radioactive waves. I’ve watched Lars sleep before. And usually my mind runs. Thoughts about us, our future, our little problems, our surprisingly compatible incompatibilities. But, tonight, there was not a thought to be had. I just lay there, feeling. Feeling different. Feeling the rise and fall of his chest. Feeling the comfort and ease of just sleeping in the company of someone else.
Suddenly, it seems so easy. To just let go of all this crap. The crap I used to cling to, and, for what? Little dramas that I created just to keep my mind busy and my heart cordoned off.
It’s not just old behavior that has to go. It’s the old thinking that leads me down these paths that so quickly twist and turn into darkness, even when I’d been right there walking in the light.
People always say, “You see what you want to see.” And, I never believed that. But it’s true. I wanted to see all the pain, hurt, and betrayal because that made it easier to throw a big ol’ pity party for myself. And, I fucking love a good pity party. The thing is, no one shows up to my pity parties except for me. And, all along, I just wanted some company.
And, here I am, in great company. Enjoying a regular Monday night, in old, ratty pajamas, next to a man who’s really given me nothing but good things in my life. And, today, I choose to let the the brush strokes create whatever kind of canvas they desire. Tonight’s story is sublime, without revision. Simple and honest in nature. Just love.
Tonight I experience a new type of freedom.