Friday, September 10, 2010

Treasure Trove

"You know, Hope, just live in this moment. After all, you could be dead before tomorrow."

"Hey, that's right! I could be dead and then I wouldn't have to deal with this would I?"

Oh, lovely thoughts that come into my head when I am feeling stressed to the max. Thoughts that sometimes make me laugh right in the midst of gut churning and heart racing anxiety about something I have no control over and have no idea how it's going to turn out.

I am very grateful to be in recovery.

It helped me delete an entire paragraph in an email where I had been trying to deflect my stuff by pointing out someone else's. I sat here and told myself that all I could do was own my stuff. End of sentence. So I deleted a paragraph that I'd thought might work in my favour in the situation. My side of the street. That's what I'm responsible for.

It doesn't absolve me of consequences. It doesn't even make it turn out pretty. But even in the midst of it all I feel clear about what's mine to own and what isn't.

I wrote the above about an hour ago. Then I made a phone call and found out that the gut churning, heart racing anxiety had not been founded in the reality of the situation. There were no dire consequences. There weren't even any consequences. The situation had been resolved by my email and then the whole thing vanished like a thin puff of smoke. The other person laughed and waved it away as it hadn't been a huge concern to them in the first place.

Yesterday, when it all started, I asked myself if this bodily reaction was what I felt as a child growing up in an abusive home. Instantly I knew I spent most of my childhood with my gut churning and that high level of anxiety running through my body. I felt a deep sorrow about this because I'd never recognized it before. Even typing that makes me teary. I can't remember the last time I thought I was in trouble and that bodily reaction came so instantaneous.

It took a lot of talking and praying to separate my childhood reaction from what was happening yesterday. It really bothered me that once I was clear in my head my body was still on high alert. For hours.

I spent the evening with a group of friends and talked it out. As the conversation shifted to the rest of the group and I sat quietly listening to where our journeys intersected my body relaxed enough that I was left with perhaps 5% of the original anxiety.

I prayed before I went to sleep. I didn't sleep well. The situation was on my mind the moment I woke up. I went to sleep and dreamed about the person and the situation. I woke up with more than a touch of gut churning and heart racing. Dearest one prayed with me and then lit prayer candles before heading to work.

And then I made the phone call and everything was okay.

I've been reading this book a little bit every night before I go to sleep. Last night I read:
"....you can use anything - everything - as a wake up call; you can find a treasure trove of information about yourself and the world in the big trials and the little annoyances of daily life. If you turn around and face yourself in times of loss and pain, you will be given the key to a more truthful - and therefore a more joyful - life."



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3 comments:

Black Pete said...

Our bodies have very, very long memories, Hope. Right?

Hope said...

They do BP, they do.

Andrew said...

Thank you. I can so relate.