A few days ago, Rae pointed out to me that I’m giving away my power in the post where I complained about not fitting in because I’m an atheist. When I read that I thought she just didn’t understand what it was like. I phrased it a little differently to myself in my own head. Bad words were involved.
But that comment has been nagging at me. She said the only person who isn’t at peace with me is me. Of all the nerve!
I really was feeling left out and all alone. And angry too. But now I’m wondering, is it possible that I’ve been suffering from terminal uniqueness? That loneliness that happens when you sit by yourself with your head down contemplating how much different you are from every person who passes by?
Thinking about how vast the universe is renders the whole atheist in recovery thing moot because in that moment, it just doesn’t matter. The awe I feel fills up all the cracks and there’s no room for feeling shut out. There’s no room for anything but awe and gratitude.
Thinking about myself is absolutely a necessary part of recovery. I need to understand what triggers me, how to stay sober, how to take care of myself. All of that requires a degree of introspection and it helps me stay sober. But like everything in life, introspection can be overdone. When it devolves into navel gazing I get the opposite of numinous, which is isolation.
It’s imperative to have others in your recovery. You cannot do it alone.
Let me repeat that. You cannot do it alone.
Because no matter how smart you are or how many books you read, you cannot see some of the mistakes you’re going to make.
It’s like the TV show, What Not to Wear. It’s always a shock to the people when Stacy and Clinton go through their wardrobe. And so far I haven’t once seen someone react to that with pleasure. They know it’s for their own good. They’ve seen the secret footage where they look horrible. And they still argue to keep the clothes that don’t look nice on them. They’re often snide and downright mean to Stacy and Clinton. Those two remind me of good sponsors. They don’t back down and they don’t sugarcoat anything. But they genuinely care. That’s obvious.
Almost everyone cries before the hairdo and makeup day. Letting go is painful. But afterward, people clearly look and feel beautiful and they thank everyone for caring enough to help.
In recovery we say that our friends care enough to tell us our slip is showing.
Most of the leaps I’ve made while trudging this happy road of destiny have come on the heels of cursing some jerk who had the temerity to point out that my slip was showing.