Diet & Weight Magazine

Recovery: Living "Free" No Matter Who Has Issues in My Recovery!

By Sobrfit3
Written By:  Cathy Shuba
"Happy Sunday!"
When I was growing up I lived with my mom and dad and two sisters.  My mom and Dad never drank!  In my teen years my two sisters would drink on occasion but never engaged in alcohol as I did.  My mom and dad had their own issues along with my sisters.  I, on the other hand, never seemed to pay any attention to their issues.  I, on the other hand, only focused on my own.  Seem surprising?  Not really, when I ended up being the alcoholic of the family!  I was the true alcoholic who only thought about me, myself and I!
When I drank I thought I was free from all others who struggled with things in their life.  I would think to myself, "I'm glad I don't have to deal with that!"  "I'm glad my life is not like that!"  I'm glad I'll be leaving soon so I don't have to continue to listen to this crap!"  "Who, me?"  "I never had a problem with this, with that or needed help like them."  I would continue to think I had it all under control.  I would continue to think I never needed any help because I would always compare my life with another and seem to think I was better, smarter and more in control of myself.  The reality to all of this, I was not Free!  The reality of all of this, I was in denial of my real problems, issues and self abandoning ways.  I was not "Free" of others until I was "Free" of my own!
It is ironic as I was writing this that every time I would think nothing bothered me or when I was around someone who was having a difficult time,...I always found myself with a drink or a drug in my hand!  Hmmmm!  Let's look at the big picture.  Does this sound familiar?  It does to me!  I remember when I was at a party, a bar or any where that involved drinking there were many around sharing their problems or issues.  I never really found it to be my issue or my problem because I was spending the same time numbing myself with alcohol.  Half the time I never remembered what I would say or let alone what you had to say!  So, this is true,...never argue or speak to a drunk when they are drunk or half way there getting drunk.  Wasted energy!  Moreover, when I drank I internalized yours and mine issues!  I was never Free when I drank!
Where am I going with this?  I'll tell you.  Do you ever find it difficult when you get sober or clean and your around others who have never gotten help for their own issues?  It seems as though their behavior and thinking drives you up a wall?  It feels as though you are uncomfortable and need to leave as soon as possible?  You have found yourself avoiding family members or parties just because there are certain members that are so screwed up you cannot stand to hear one word that comes out of their mouths, let alone be in the same room with them?  Have you worked with, married with or dated with certain people that are just mean, spiteful, ignorant and just plain abusive?  If so, you think by finding a new job, relocating, getting a divorce or finding a new woman or man it would solve all your problems and later find that it hasn't, let alone worsened your situation?  If you have said yes to any of these scenarios, your not alone and I have been their and done that too!  The only way I was able to set myself free from my own issues let alone other peoples issues was to work on me!  Focus on me!  Take my own inventory!  Change only me!  Find me!  Continue to work on me!
When I became sober I started to realize that others around me had issues, were still struggling with their addictions and were just to stubborn to be willing to change or see their own issues regardless if it was an addiction or not.  I became frustrated with this.  I became aggravated with this.  I became inpatient with this.  I became judgmental, self righteous and arrogant.  I became a person in recovery I did not want to be,...Dry and Miserable!  I was not free!  It wasn't until I started to really work on me and dissect me that I found what aggravated me was what I saw in other people!  I saw perhaps, my old behaviors, my old thinking and my old way of dealing with things.  My frustration, aggravation, anger, resentment and miserable attitude all stemmed from FEAR!  Fear of becoming that way again!  Fear of drinking again!  Fear of loosing control, that I later learned I never had in the first place.  Fear of never feeling content and peace.  Fear of never being able to figure out or separate my issue from other peoples issues.  Fear of not having my own mind, self respect and self confidence that I had and still work so hard for today!  When I was able to realize this and deal with it in a rational way I was able to see myself at peace.  I was able to accept my character defects, see them for what they were or still struggle with and know I have choices today in order to better me, focus on me and no one else.  I was able to be kinder to myself first, in order to be kinder to others.  I was able to humble me, which allowed me to have compassion, acceptance and a better understanding as to why others choose the life they do.  I was able to be around family members, friends and people at work and outside of work.  I was able to reach out my hand to those who still needed it and not feel frustrated.  I was able to be there for my kids, teach my kids how to separate their issues from others and as I always say to my kids, "Don't wear other people's issues!"  The biggest lesson I have learned by focusing on me is knowing I am able to live with or around others in peace, regardless of their issues.  This in return, has made me FREE!
Lastly, this does not include living with someone who harms you, beats you or abuses your children in the same matter.  In this case, I would suggest you seek help and not be around, continue to live with or subject your life along with your children in an atmosphere that is so dangerous!
Today I will run knowing I am not running from issues or others as well.  I will run knowing I chose to set myself FREE!  
Sobriety Fitness by Cathy Shuba is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.
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