The tattoo on my wrist says CREATE. I got it when I was nine months sober. The little flesh and ink promise that the rest of my life would be spent making good on this earth, instead of robbing people and the world of it.
This blog documents moments of nostalgic pain and destruction. Still, I haven’t found a word in the entire english language to describe the millions of ways I died in my alcoholism. The habitual spiritual deaths that occurred with every breath.
The mental obsession of not breathing.
The physical unwillingness to breathe.
But, here I am. After 3 years, I still grieve for the girl I could’ve been had I stopped at 20, or 25, or even 30. Who could I have been if I hadn’t destroyed her?
There’s no guarantee I would’ve been ok. So at least living in the present, the path that I took, I know I ended up ok for now. There is a solid feeling that I’ve made some stuff and helped some folks, creating a space of love of others and finally, myself.
But while I was doing that, I realized, I can’t keep making more and more goodness. My God – this world is overdosed on self-thought and distraction. I do not need to add more to it. How can things get better without adding good to the world? Well, we destroy the bad, of course!
When I went through the 12 steps of AA, I realized that doing all this work and admitting my faults and making amends was NOT about “becoming a new woman.” It was actually a process of destruction to rid myself of all the things that kept me from being the woman I already was – a child of God.
Already, I am full of love (and you are, too.)
Already, I am full of joy (and you are, too.)
Already, I am full of peace (and you are, too.)
But one broken heart, one disappointment, one bold resentment – and I’m cut off from accessing the good that is already inside of me. (And you do this, too.)
As I’ve worked with women through the step work and watched them shed all these old lies and identities they picked up because they didn’t know how actually awesome (defined as: extremely impressive, breathtaking, awe-inspiring, miraculous, etc, etc, etc) they were, I die a little bit more. Because I want to believe AA is a hoax sometimes, that the God idea just makes me “feel” better, that my imagination saved me.
Bricks won’t hold it in. Lies won’t hold it down. Love will let it out and we will let it drown the darkness, fears + brokenness, can you feel it now? Let it cover you.
Have you ever been in a dirty bedroom with a someone who was one night away from killing herself? Then locked yourself in a hospital dining room six feet away from her, listening to every written resentment that kills her with every breath, every day? Then given her instructions to take it all to her God – whatever she imagines That to be – and tell that Power that she’s willing to let go of the beliefs, delusions, behaviors, that ruled her life? Then hear your phone ring from an unknown number only to have it be her? And have you ever felt electricity running through the earpiece as she speaks, sending shock waves of Power through your skin as you remember – This is why I got sober.
To see, hear, and feel that moment that someone takes their soul back and surrenders it all over again to a Power that wants to use it for good. Sometimes I forget I made that same surrender. But moments like that make me obsess on it and seek it out like, well… an addict, I guess. 🙂
And if all that could happen with one “throwaway drunk” don’t you think it could happen with so many more?
Could you imagine if the non-drunks did this, too?
What would the world look like if we could all breathe deeply, look eachother in the eyes, and not have anything to hide? From ourselves or from each other? Wouldn’t that be Heaven on earth?
So, Create is still my motto – sure. But I’m not so afraid of destruction anymore now, either. If I had it my way (God, are you listening?) I’d find a way to destroy the delusions that keep us separated from each other. I’m not there yet. But if/when I do – this song will totally be the soundtrack to that moment – enjoy! 🙂
So let the Spirit rise up, let it break through the walls, and beat down the doors, and crash through the windows and cover the earth.