The Recovery Group

A Personal Recovery


hi all,

I was feeling really good when I woke up this morning, got ready and left on my walk, this is day 4 and tomorrow I'm taking the day off from the walk and since I was feeling especially strong during the first half mile today, I decided to extend my walk to go over by the park. There is a boat dock there and it's shaded and just thought I'd sit there for a while enjoying the water and view before heading back home. No more than 3 steps after making this decision I became extremely tired, felt worn out and began rethinking my decision. It became such a trudge that I spent the next quarter of a mile debating whether I could actually make it or not, and had decided that indeed I wouldn't go and just do my normal 1.5 mile walk. As I approached the street that would have taken me on the new route, I suddenly decided that I wasn't going to let my disease play this game with me. I had had plenty of energy when I made the decision to go, so figured it was just my disease telling me that "it was too much, I wasn't ready, put it off till tomorrow, or next week, or......." NO!!!!!!! I headed down the new path. My body became even more tired, the effort was excruciating, my legs became heavy, my steps unsure and wobbly, it was truly amazing to watch this happening, knowing I wanted to do this, but my disease fighting me all the way. I persisted. Along the way I decided I wouldn't stop after all, figuring once I stopped it would be even harder to get going again... (I don't know that this is true, but this time I let the decision change) so at the entrance of the park, I turned to head home. It was still a struggle, my legs were quivering, tingling, and tired. I kept going, after all what else could I do? My daughter couldn't carry me, couldn't go back and bring the car to pick me up. I HAD to continue. My daughter made some comment about walking all over town, and I said in as cheery a voice as I could muster, "well that's the fun of walking, to enjoy the scenery and the morning - for you, but at the moment all I can see is the road ahead of me", and I smiled at her.

All I could concentrate on was taking the next step... it was not the joyous occasion I had just extolled, it was work!! I know though at some time in the near future, it will be a joyous occasion again. I just needed to stretch myself a bit, I needed to prove to myself that I could do more than my disease was telling me I could.

I haven't gone out yet to measure the new distance, but I figure it at about another three quarters of a mile, which would have made my walk 2.25 miles this morning... I'll find out later today when I have to go out and run my errands. (note: it turned out to be 2.85 miles-WOW!) :-)

This incident brought to mind the Spartans, and the burning of their boats when they landed on the shore of the land they wanted to conquer. The captain had decided there would be no "back door", no where to fall back to, he would win or he would die trying.

How often in our lives do we hear this? How often do we hear our parents tell us, "Go For It, Follow Your Dream, Do Whatever It Takes!"... I can tell you, I "never" heard that. What I heard was, "That would be nice to have as a hobby, but you need something solid to "fall back on" in case it doesn't work out. You can't make a living doing that." Programmed for failure all my life!

What else were my parents going to teach me? My dad "settled" for a secure job, a military career. A man who had a problem with authority figures, had chosen the very career that put it in his face in a big way every day of his life. He persevered though for 30 years, was a work addict, so we never saw him, when he came home from work he disappeared to his shop, and he did what he loved to do, he was a metals man, a welder, and he liked to work with his hands, making something that he could look at and see a job well done. It has been a long time finding anything positive to say about this man, I could find no nobility in him at all, I viewed him as a sellout. Now, I just feel sorry for him, that he never found the strength to pursue his own dreams and find something fulfilling to do with his life. On the very basics, He did support his family, we did have food, clothes and shelter, all the things his generation thought to be the necessities of life, but somewhere the emotional needs were put aside and so how do you nurture anyone when the emotional well is dry?

I struggle with this many times a day, because the stoic emotional upbringing makes me love the isolation, the feeling of being "safe" while hiding who I am and what I am really feeling. I am learning to let go a bit, but it is hard work for me.

I am not the person I want to be, not the loving, patient, understanding father I thought I would be, not the tender, caring husband I want to be, but at least I have in mind what I would like to be, and that gives me the desire to keep working toward that goal.

Before I was only depressed that these two things were so far apart, (what I am and what I want to be), and that is the flip side, our shortcomings either make us give up or give us the desire to work towards attaining it. Hope is the key to it all. Belief that I can actually attain my goals, if I am willing to make the effort, if I am willing to trust that in time I will attain my hearts desire.

The effort, I have found, is the effort it took to believe in a Higher Power, to put "something" else in the drivers seat of my life. Again, here I still struggle at times, but more and more I am able to trust my HP.

This tome went off in a direction I had no intention of going, but that's how it works for me, I just start with an idea that seems it needs some exploration, and HP gives me the rest. :-)

Hope springs eternal!

Stay Strong!

love and hugs,

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