Thursday, October 30, 2008
Transforming my loss
The sadness, anxiety, anger, and emotional confusion that I experienced as a child were extended into my marriage to an alcoholic. I had a lot of expectations of others that never were met. I wanted closeness with my father who loved me but was emotionally distant. I wanted romance and the story-book stuff that I thought came with marriage. I didn't get any of those things.
After coming into Al-Alon, I came to realize that my expectations of other people were killing me. These expectations had been the reason that I felt sadness and grief for much of my life. I always wanted my father to be the warm supportive dad to me. And I wanted my wife to be the loving, happy and exciting bride. What this got me was a lot of anxiety over someone else's drinking. I came to feel lonely all the time because I didn't think that anyone would love me. And I really didn't know how to give love without manipulation and control.
Through the program, I've transformed my feeling of loss into a way that I can live my life in peace. The keys to my transformation were acceptance and surrender. I have come to accept that I can't make anyone over to be the way that I want them to be. I simply accept them for who they are and make a decision as to whether I want to be around them or not. I've come to realize that the real love comes from within me and from my Higher Power.
I still have those dark days when I forget that I can't change anyone else. I get lost in the expectations of what I want. I forget that I have to take what I like and leave the rest. Fortunately, the dark days don't happen often. And when they do, I know that there are resources I have from the program to help me get through to the light.