Saturday, May 18, 2013

Am I a part of the cure? Or am I part of the disease?

I don't write much about it here (a little here and here), but I am an addict in (pretty successful) recovery.

This weekend I'm attending the annual retreat for my addiction recovery group, Radiant Recovery.

This weekend is something of a program reset for me, as my food as gotten pretty wonky. My meal timings are off, browns (whole-grains) are almost non-existent, my journal has disappeared.  Only breakfast has remained, the steady rock of my program no matter what.

I haven't started using sugar again, but with the specter of Jay's mortality hanging over me, I can see frighteningly clearly the point where I might start using again.

That I can see going back to the place I've so successfully pulled myself out of scares me. I've been clean for 5 years now, and I don't want to squander that success.

Neither do I want to lose the rest of my life hiding from the pain of Jay's death. I know myself well enough to know I will feel the pull toward that kind of oblivion once he's gone.  That would be true even if my food and my program were picture-perfect.  The desire to drown my grief in my drug of choice and to not have to face the life I will have right after he goes will be strong. Only a program strongly in place and strong emotional support will counteract that urge.

It's been interesting to watch how the cancer journey is inflecting my recovery journey. It's easy for me to get lost in the minutiae of what needs to be done, in all the care that I want to give him. It's so easy for me to forget that I'm not an infinite pool of energy and resources, that I need to take care of myself, that time away from him can be a positive thing, not a bad thing.

For even in all we have to contend with as a couple, as a family, as a tribe, as a community, there is still joy to be had, and I don't want to miss a moment of it.

This weekend is serving as a good reminder of how off my program has been. The simple realization of how much I've missed beans has startled me, and focused me.

Our community's founder says that once we've experienced radiance, our cells never forget the feeling.

My cells are singing with joy and radiance again.

I remember.