I'll be on the road today making a 200 mile round trip to see Fr. Charlie.
Some people express surprise when they find out I still see him for spiritual direction despite his move to a different parish. Many people simply move on to another SD when circumstances change.
Next month it will be three years I've been seeing him for sessions.
Maybe other people have an easier time building trust relationships.
I trace where I'm at in my recovery, in my spiritual journey, in large part to the grace of God working through Fr. Charlie. He's listened as I talked around and around in circles. He continued to believe in me long before I was able to do that for myself. In short, he had hope in me while I was still hiding in the shadows. It was in his presence that I first spoke the words 'sexual addiction'. When he didn't die from shock at the phrase, I saw a glimmer of hope that I didn't have to continue living in the shame of that addiction forever. Through many relapses he continued to affirm my journey. I'd sit there all teary over losing 90 days of abstinence, looking backwards as if I was a total failure. He looked at the 90 days of grace and held it up as a beacon of hope that 91 days was possible. I have lost track of the times he has said to me that the truth will set me free. Today is day 617.
I've learned that the sessions where it feels like no progress is being made are just as much a part of the journey as the times when huge 'aha' moments happen. (Kind of like blogging.) I remember phoning him between sessions once to tell him that it all just felt like same shit different piles. That I was wasting my time and his. He replied that going from one pile to the next was still movement. Could you just get as weary of me as I am? I wanted to shout. But he didn't.
So today finds me making a worthwhile journey.