"The sun has left and forgotten me | It's dark I cannot see | Why does this rain pour down | In a sea | Of deep confusion." ... more to comeThere are times along all of our journeys when we take a moment to contemplate a rough spot along our way, a misstep on our part or events that pushed us down, far down that slippery slope back to the lowlands. It's that damned Chutes and Ladders component to recovery both parents and children fear to our core. Our children call it relapse. We can simply refer to it as a stumble or temporary setback.
We wonder how we ever held it together. We managed to function at work, maintain relative sanity with family and not assault anyone on the interstate. We had a lot weighing us down, The bog is all about the heavy and thick - the seemingly inescapable.
"How did we do it?"
Soon after embarking on our recovery we may have persevered by raging or going away. We may have pulled out our old parent tool kit to fix the unfixable, a reaction to perceived chaos that would only throw an incendiary into a roomful of combustibles. We had The Addiction right where it wanted us!
Even after fully embracing the journey we know The Bad can happen throwing us back headlong to our old ways. Even the strongest among us can buckle.
But now we have tools. We have fellow travellers from whom we can draw strength.
We can hang on. We will hang on, we owe this to our children, to our family and most importantly to ourselves. We can hang on first by remembering to breathe, not reacting and even contradicting our mantra of just keep moving. Sometimes, simply being, consolidating and hanging in there may be the best recourse.
My recovery journey began far too late into my son's spiral. I raged, fixed and dove into his vortex with him as if to clear the way for deeper exploration of the abyss The Addiction had created for him, for me. I thought I was holding everything together. What I couldn't see was my entire life eroding around me.
I began to work diligently on an existence not dependent on external forces. It wasn't until I accepted my beaten, defeated and weakened condition that I first allowed myself the gift of simply being, hanging in, hanging on.
Remember the feeling when we just Let Go, when we handed our Great Creator control of our immediate future? We trusted the Universe had plans for us if we would simply loosen our grip on ... everything. It is a lesson learned and one also to remember as we do keep moving.
We can hang on when we need to and move enthusiastically along our pathways when the opportunity arises. Five years into my recovery I keep moving more and hang on less.
But I still hang on, occasionally.
Occasionally an unseen obstacle may trip me up. I reach out to a friend, a reading or other recovery tool and hang on for dear life. I breathe, check to see all is well then continue on with help arriving seemingly out of nowhere, the Universe extending its hand as if to say, "Oh no you don't. You've got things to do!"
"Just hang on, hang on to the vine | Stay on, soon you'll be divine | If you start to cry, look up to the sky | Something's coming up ahead | To turn your tear to dew instead"We're fragile. We're human beings, but we're strong and resilient as well. Recovery provides Hope and a spiritual lifeline each day. We've got to hold onto our recovery as if our lives depended on it. And oh, our lives do depend on staying the course, hanging on, holding fast to the journey, remaining as true as we can be to the pathways laid out for us every minute, every hour, each day at a time.
It's a miracle, this journey. Give it time. Let go of the old and hold on to this new life, this new way of living, searching and striving.
"When change is hard and not so nice | You listen to your heart the whole night through | Your sunny someday will come one day soon to you," ~ Hang on Little Tomato, Written by Thomas Lauderdale, China Forbes and Patrick Abbey