Discussion in 'Ages 40+' started by Doofus, Jan 8, 2014.
Thank you @Bobo ! Again, that's comforting to know.
I'm not sure if most 'self-proclaimed' Christians really have a clue as to what being a Christian actually means, Doofus, so this may be a good sign for you
Many years ago, I read the book "ONE" by Richard Bach. There was a chapter where Richard was with this wise sage who had written the meaning of life on a parchment. Richard was in awe of what was written, and then dumbfounded when the wise sage burned the parchment. He wanted to know why the sage didn't give it to the people struggling in the world who might have needed it. The sage simply said that he didn't want them to turn it into another religion.
My sense is that although you MAY find God in religion, you most definitely won't find religion in God.
I've been blessed with an agonizingly amazing path to begin to remember my spiritual self, and it has very little to do with what religions tend to focus on. You've got the same stuff inside of you, and if you're open to listening to it, it may both surprise you in the most delightful of ways, as well as break all the rules as to how you thought (or were taught) as to how it was supposed to be
One more thought. I know that alcohol is one of your coping mechanisms. It's neither good, bad, right or wrong, and it does tend to diminish our ability to be open to the soulful part of ourselves. If/when your ready to put a lid on alcohol, it will really benefit your recovery.
Keep up the great work!
Thank you for the support and wisdom, @NCBob ! You're right about the booze. I'm sticking with the maxim of 'one addiction at a time', but I have worked, am working, to reduce my consumption and reliance on it. I feel like I'm getting closer to being in control of it as my strength increases (due, I think, to holding to no PMO) or admitting I have to go cold turkey.
And I loved Richard Bach when I was a kid! Both Jonathon Livingston Seagull and Illusions impacted the spiritual thinking of 12 year old me. I'd kind of forgotten about them. Thanks for the reminder. Illusions featured ' a reluctant savior' who has a similar attitude toward religion as the character you're describing. I'm different in some important ways from who I was at that age, but that kid is still in there. Maybe getting in touch with him a little will be helpful. Thank you!
The great news is - is that 12 year old is still alive and well on the inside. Just a matter of shedding some layers of 'emotional plaque' accrued thru the years, and integrating all the good you've learned since then with that same part of yourself. If we're open to it, it becomes a wonderful win-win on all levels. Keep up the great work!
Recovery is an action. That means we must constantly be pushing ourselves a tiny bit to overcome. We all know, deep in our hearts, what we need to do. Our minds LOVE to rationalize, it's what makes every person on this planet susceptible to addiction and misery. We want more sex but we don't pursue it. We want to be in better shape, but we keep eating and drinking. We want to feel happy, but we sabotage this with cheap hits of dopamine. As I write this to you, I'm writing this to myself. This is the beauty of writing in the journals of others, because it reinforces our motivation. It creates clarity, as we're all dealing with the same shit.
You're having a bit of time of late, but don't let your eyes glaze over: be fierce!
Similar to the pre flight instructions on an airline. Put the oxygen mask on yourself; make sure you're functional before helping others.
Good way to describe it, Saville. PMO is simply the 'Boone's Farm' of happiness...
I'm back. First big thanks to all of you who have been follwing my diary here and writing. Your contributions are extremely valued by me!
I'm stressed and tempted. So, I'll write here some more. Begin probably incomprehensible and random stream of consciousness:
Yesterday was therapy day. I don't know why, but it always, inexplicably, leaves me feeling bad. Even though we didn't really talk about anything that should have. In fact, he didn't talk much at all. I guess that's how it works, but I'm not sure I'm getting better. Instead, what I did, what I've been doing, is simply recount what's been going on in my life. It's like catching up with an acquaintance you haven't seen for a while.
Hmmm I'm doing better in some ways, though, I suppose and worse in others. Better: One of my New Year's resolutions was to stop using my car for in-town errands. Though it was cold as hell yesterday, I biked to the grocery store to shop for dinner. I also had what I'd feared would be a difficult conversation with N about returning to school and his living accommodations this morning. I got out to run - a little as I'm babysitting N still - yesterday, but did no other exercise. I finally wrote down some exercise goals. So that was good, but I just defaulted to the ones I'd had the last 2 years now. Both of those years I failed to reach those goals, and not by a little either. They may be too ambitious, and, I should think about changing them, but, I didn't. I'm going to try to think about that today. I stretched yesterday and read SaD some. But I spent way too much time on social media and, just generally, fretting. I haven't started on the many many things I have to do for work, which starts (or not...) next week. Nor have I done any research. I drank wine to get back to sleep last night.
I think one problem I have is that there are way too many things that I want to do, or feel I ought to be doing, that, before I even commit to actually doing them I get overwhelmed and paralyzed. And then I don't do important things, then I devolve into this over-anxious mess and, in the past, act out. That's how I'm feeling right now. As I say above, I'm doing better, I think, in some ways. I'm not PMO-ing, but I have been wasting time on social media or doing other unimportant things which help me numb out or provide the dopamine shots by other means - drinking, surfing the net. Mostly surfing the net, which is dangerous because there's often links or click bait which are racy in some way or another and I don't always resist clicking and peeking.
I'm going to try to limit the time I spend wasted on randome surfing - especially on social media. I'll think about specific goals and report back, probably today, day 68.
Don't let social media become your "pmo"! It does not matter---- the effort or job doesn't have to be earth shattering. Do it however menial it may seem to you. Good move you're doing well 68 days
The inner turmoil we feel about what direction to go, what things to do, is actually the addict talking. The addict wants us to feel confused and addled, because that way we stay stuck.
Thank you, both! And I think this is a helpful way for me to think about it - it's war: New better me vs old addicted me.
Boy that can be a killer. Pick one thing and work on that and the sense of accomplishment will give you positive vibes and spur you on. I don't always do that but that approach helps.
You are the ball dude----- just believe that--- pleasure to be part of the process with y'all!
Doofus, something that you might want to consider regarding therapy. Rather than passively wait for guidance from your therapist, before going into your sessions, create an agenda of things YOU want to discuss, work on, heal from, etc. during the time with your therapist. It will make a huge difference in both your therapeutic experience and outcome
Thank you @NCBob !
I actually have been trying to do that. The problem I've encountered, though, is that there are many many problems of a situational nature, and, I think about those and think about which of those to talk about with him, but the truth is that it is my reaction to them, my current inability to handle them in an adult manner that is my real problem. I've said exactly this to him, but he hasn't come back to me with anything helpful. I guess I'm looking for more of a wise interrogator who will help me uncover what's changed in me over the last few years. I used to be someone who felt I could meet challenges, that I could solve problems. Now? Not so much. In fact, just the opposite.
He's suggested I'm suffering from low-T. And, for many reasons, that makes sense. But, as I've written above, I'm afraid to go to a doctor to have that checked. Catch-22. I can't solve the problem of a lack of courage because I don't possess the courage to face up to the problem.
I'm not giving up on any of this mind you, but it's a work very much in progress.
And you, @Bobo ! I'm not sure what you mean, though by "You are the ball"? Do you mean I'm the marker being moved up and down the field by the better new me and the old addicted me?
I'm hoping kicking PMO will fill that role. So far it's working, I think, but unevenly and slowly. I'm 54 and worried I'm running out of time to fully live up to my potential. In many spheres. I'm 54 and have so much to do. @Saville has really struck a nerve about this. I've really focused on being the best Dad I can be for the last 22 years, reasoning that ethically I owed a huge debt to these people I intentionally brought into the world. Though I know that and have done my best to behave as if they are currently adults (17-21) and are best served by me letting them fail some times, it is also the case that when they came into the world they were completely helpless. That process from completely helpless to adult takes place so slowly that I haven't always adjusted appropriately perhaps. I focus on my duties to them, and, in the process, sacrifice optimizing myself which might serve them better as I am their role-model as a man.
Parenthood is the hardest, most important, most mysterious, most heartbreaking thing any man can do. I'm working on it and working on me. Both are important and both are hard. I guess that keeps it interesting, huh?
Thank you, @Bobo !
Separate names with a comma.