Tuesday, December 23, 2014

The Universe Will Provide (A Christmas Miracle) - A Personal Reflection

"Do you believe in miracles? Yes! ~ Al Michaels at the 1980 Winter Olympics

Our family recently purchased through Craig's List a love seat and sofa to replace an overused set in our downstairs family room. Everyone was looking forward to this including our son who brought me to this journey, as the old furniture would be moved to his apartment. The new set would be a welcome and long anticipated upgrade to our home furnishings.

My wife and our two sons were to pick up the replacement furniture late on an unseasonably warm December Saturday morning. I was scheduled to speak at an early meeting (serendipity!!!!) and afterward, awaited their return at home to assist with moving the old up and out and the new in and down.

The three arrived and the boys did the heavy lifting, bringing the old pieces easily up the steps and angling them out the door, I providing assistance, coaching and foremanship. (I did manage to wrench my lower back during the process which may be a subject metaphor for a future posting.)

The three men began the moving-in process starting with the love seat. I had earlier noted the back piece of the Craig's List furniture was angled a bit more severely than what had been brought upstairs and was relieved when "we" were able to maneuver the smaller of the two pieces through the doorway, then, the immediate clockwise pivot required to transition from the landing down the steps to our family room. It's a tight turn, a mover's nightmare.

The sofa was next, but every effort to angle, turn or pivot this piece of furniture into position to slide down the stairway proved futile. I even sawed off some wooden coat hooks above the landing we were convinced prevented that final move to allow the leviathan free movement. At the point of exhaustion and after an hour of trying we abandoned all attempts to move the unmovable.

We were beaten by an inanimate object, a plush sofa!

We unjammed the sofa, packed it again into my son's work truck that had brought it cross-county to our home not three hours before, brought the love seat back upstairs, gently laid it plush-side down on the sofa and strapped both securely to the truck bed. The overused and outdated furniture was brought back downstairs.

We then decided that the son who brought me to this journey would be the recipient of the new-er sofa/love seat ensemble, his ground-floor apartment being much more receptive to a move. Keeping the furniture in the family seemed like the right thing to do.

It proved to be much more than this on so many levels.

He was ecstatic, our recovery boy, and genuinely grateful.

I admit it took me a few hours to get over the image of $200.00 driving off in a pick up truck to its new home. Before recovery this image would have remained with me for days or even weeks.

The next day my wife told me our youngest mentioned he was happy his brother got the furniture.

"It will make him feel better about himself," he had said.

Tears welled up in love and pride for both my boys.

Later that same day I was able to relate to younger brother how touched I had been by what he had said. I told him I felt the same way but admitted in honesty it may have taken me a while.

At that moment it hit me, one of the miracles of the day.

"You know," I told my boy, "It was meant to be that your brother got the sofa and love seat. We were never supposed to have that downstairs. He was supposed to have that furniture in his apartment all along."

The look on his eyes told me he got it, this message. I stopped there. No talk about the Universe or synchronicity. For once I wouldn't ruin the moment.

The two of us simply embraced the miracle.

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One of the gifts of recovery is the ability to feel the miracle when it happens. Miracles are often felt before they are realized or internalized. Miracles are gifts of a warm feeling that surrounds us with an awareness that we are not alone on our journeys, we are not in control and cannot expect to orchestrate our joys and revelations or to even fulfill all our needs.

The second miracle of that day was the gratitude felt by my son who brought me here and a small realization that perhaps there is a presence surrounding him he cannot yet explain. A perplexity entered his soul that only can happen through a new found, if brief, self awareness. Addiction eschews true introspection. Addiction, remember, hates REAL.

We may never know what The Universe has in mind for us and our children who brought us here. Try as we may we cannot force The Good to materialize. Sometimes we have to accept what may seem to be the impossible, and await, patiently, the possible, the possibilities ahead.

Before our recovery how many miracles passed us by? Think of how many situations we forced, coerced,or manipulated as The Universe, God, The Great Creator watched, awaiting our hearts to soften and our eyes to be opened to acceptance, love and peace.

The next time the sofa won't move down the stairway don't waste so much time forcing what will never materialize.

Who knows what The Universe has in mind for us?


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"Miracles happen every day, change your perception of what a miracle is and you'll see them all around you." ~ Jon Bon Jovi
"Miracles are for everyone." ~ Patrick Benjamin