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Thursday, October 16, 2008

LIFE ON LIFE'S TERMS


I posted a pretty angry blog about my grandmother and her condition a few days ago. Since then, I have had sort of an epiphany about the whole situation. With the help of a group of people that I consider my second family, I have decided to take a different approach on the whole situation.

I am going to go out on a limb and break my own anonymity for the sake of people that may be reading this. I am a recovering addict and alcoholic. I have been clean and sober for a little over two and a half years. I attend 12-step meetings to help me stay that way.

I have learned many things along this journey I've been on for the last few years but the major one is that life happens and it is my responsibility to accept life on life's terms. Driving last night, I was overcome with a feeling of complete acceptance of what is going on with my grandmother and her illness.

I was ready to hop a plane and just be with her but I had to step back and check my motives. They were selfish and self-seeking. There is nothing I can do for her. I do not have the cure for cancer locked away somewhere, there is nothing I can say that will make this all go away. Feeling an overwhelming sense of guilt for my behavior in the past is no reason to invade Pittsburgh trying to fix something that cannot be fixed.

That all being said, I have made a decision to stay put and just keep putting one foot in front of the other. The best way to honor her is to be of service to people that I can help. By going to AA meetings here, I have the chance to share my experience with people here that may need to hear something I have to say.

I found out yesterday that she has been and continues to be proud of me. She holds nothing against me, she realizes that the person I was for so many years is not the person I am today. The only one that is holding on to some of my past actions is me.

My Aunt said something to me last night that just floored me.

"We are and have always been stronger together than we are apart. We use tough love when it is necessary, we encourage each other when times are tough, but we always get through it as a family and move forward."

Well, I am proud to be part of a family like that and I am proud to be part of a group of ex-drunks that always have and always will do the exact same thing.

When the time comes for me to be there to support my family when she passes, then I will be there. When that time comes and I need the hand of AA to guide me through that experience, I know it will be there.

For that, I am grateful.

And just for the record:

My name IS Nicole and I am an alcoholic!

(i feel better now)

1 comment:

LisaJane said...

Oh my, oh my, oh my! You continue to amaze me with your insights and narratives.