Day 290: The Sweet Sip

You can run, but you can’t hide. Not from yourself anyway.

It’s taken a lot of time and digging in AA, rehab, and therapy, but, I’ve started to discover that facing things directly is the only way to avoid disaster. It’s the solution to all my problems. Action. Communication. Honesty. I see it. I’ve seen it. It’s true, real, and proven. But, in spite of myself, I just can’t let go of old habits.

I sat face to face with my therapist today. And, before she gave me the reality check of a lifetime, I looked into her eyes and truly appreciated that I have someone in my life with whom I can be completely honest and open. No judgement. No opinion. Just an ear. An ear that sometimes offers helpful suggestions or makes connections that I just couldn’t see on my own.

I hadn’t seen her in three weeks because of my new work schedule. And, it felt like I’d arrived at an oasis when she came out from her office to retrieve me in the lobby. But, there, in her little office, she helped me to uncover the ultimate secret I’ve been keeping. One that isn’t going to hurt anyone but myself. And, as she helped me arrive at this gem of anguishing self-doubt, I felt that maybe the oasis was about to run dry.

The truth that I uncovered today was something that, maybe, I knew about all along. I’ve managed to be honest with myself about all the things that have held me down, even when it’s meant holding myself accountable for some pretty bad shit. But, despite my well-learned lessons in honesty, I’m still afraid to trust my own, honest-to-God-gut-feelings.

I’ve come into my therapist’s office with the same problem over and over again. And, of course, I recognize that it’s a reoccurring negative theme, but, I’m talking about it in therapy. I’m working on it. Right?

Wrong.

At what point does returning to the same foe, over and over again, become the same insanity that brought me back to the bar night after night. Talking doesn’t solve problems. Clarify them, sure. Explicate and justify them, yes. But, it doesn’t solve anything. Fixing requires action. Actual mending. And, what’s rough about some dilemmas is, well, they can’t be resolved. You can attempt and attempt, but, at some point, you begin to realize that banging your head against a wall isn’t going to make your headache go away. It’s walking away from the wall.

I’ve grown so much. Learned more than I thought possible in the last 9 months. But, walking away from something that isn’t working…that’s a new concept. And with it, comes its own set of problems. New levels of discomfort. Taking action in ways I’ve never taken action. Strength and courage, that I don’t know that I have yet, are necessary. My desire has always been to fix, not to abandon. It’s the woman in me. The untapped mother. The dutiful child. To go against my instincts, even when I know it means I will get to the best outcome, is devastating.

At the oasis, I had my sweet sip. Truth. This thing I’ve sought after.

The power in knowing what you have to do. The helplessness in having no clue how to do it.

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