Friday, October 2, 2009


I have been feeling a bit down over the past few days. I started to get the focus off myself and onto the alcoholic. Plus, I wasn't feeling so great physically because of having a cold. These things in concert are a recipe for me to slip into old behaviors.

I had planned a special weekend getaway in the mountains of North Carolina for the two of us. It is peak leaf time in mid October. I made a lot of calls only to find that everything was booked up. But I happened to call a place that I really liked and the owner told me that I was in luck. There had been a cancellation five minutes earlier. So I was so happy to be able to reserve a farmhouse by a stream.

I was bursting with enthusiasm when I told the plans to my SO. She was quiet and didn't say anything except...."Well, I'm not so sure that I want to go to the mountains." I explained about the cabin and how lucky it was to get a reservation. She then said, "Well, maybe the idea will grow on me."

I didn't try to convince her but said, "Okay, let me know what you would like to do." I mentally gave her until yesterday to let the idea "grow" on her. When she didn't say anything, other than she was looking forward to an oyster roast in February, I called yesterday and canceled the reservations.

I had let my enthusiasm for something that I thought would be romantic and fun build into an expectation. It felt good to let the expectation go. Perhaps there will be something else that she will want to do. Perhaps not.

Regardless of what another wants to do, I have choices about what I want to do. Most importantly, I can choose to not be miserable.

I realize that there is an abundance of great things in my life. I have an abundance of friends, an abundance of spirit, abundant love, abundant enthusiasm. And I'm surrounded by an abundance of beauty that is manifesting in the bluest of skies and the golden light shining on the water.

I realize that my spiritual abundance needed a boost. I found that in the noon meeting yesterday and through prayers of gratitude last night. Just as Walt Whitman wrote, "I celebrate myself, and sing myself". I feel abundantly okay today.


  1. I posted about abundance today too. I was making a choice to focus on that myself.
    It's hard when my expectations start to run things. My best times are almost always spontanious and unexpected. I hear you. jeNN

  2. I like this post. I like the process of recovery and a good program that you put into this...

    Have a great weekend Syd.

  3. sometimes wes and i go through the same thing. sometimes i just don't feel that much into "us".
    we start couples counseling this month. i don't think, nor am i implying that you two need this, i know she is dealing with a lot of grief right now what with coming to acceptance of losing a 2nd sponsor to cancer in one year. this is a "we" program and i pray for both of you to have peace. i appreciate your honesty and willingness to have empathy for yourself and for her.hopefully soon she will come around.

  4. I know how you feel and the little stab of pain in the heart still happens to me once in awhile. My spouse doesn't travel so I booked myself to go to an Alanon retreat in the mountains next weekend. I am learning too. Why are we hopeless romantics? :-D


  5. I can identify so completely with this post. It is easy for me to feel down when others don't meet my expectations of them. (I often have a long list of them.) What a drag.

    It is a total relief to just let it go. Getting spiritually connected and remembering I am living on borrowed time that God has given me helps me "let go". Then I try to "practice being satisfied".

    Thanks for the reminder,

  6. This time of year there are an abundance of opportunities to do things that I would consider "fun". There were fall festivals last weekend, and there are more this weekend and next weekend. However I have to know the limits of my family too, and it will not be fun for any of us if I pull my husband and daughter out of their comfort zones too often. This weekend will be quiet. Next weekend we can do more. Sometimes we have to balance all that abundance with some rest in between. Sometimes just spending time at home with those we love can be enough.
    Sorry you aren't getting your mountain retreat.

  7. I was sorry t hear you had to cancel the cabin. I love doing those kind of things. I also know my other half has times he's just not in the mood to be immersed in nature (something that just seems wrong to me *winks*).

    Hopefully you will get a chance at on outing to enjoy the foliage this autumn. (Hugs)Indigo

  8. I liked reading about how you worked through all that with your wife. It gives me good insight into how you work your program. I admire you a great deal.

  9. Way to see the miracle, Syd.

  10. You handled that well, not sure I could have done the same!
    It's difficult to deal with expectations.

  11. That can be so disappointing. Often I am enthusiastic about something that my husband is hesitant or indifferent about. I let it bother me too much. Thanks for sharing this.

  12. It isn't easy fighting off the blues and wishing your SO would participate in your ideas. It's hard work being aware of what you're really doing and then trying with God's help to do things differently. Kudos to you for your efforts and sensitivity. My spouse went with me, ungracefully and with some bad sport attitude, to see my counselor this morning, where I had a good cry and he had his eyes opened to the depth of my sorrow over Mom. Sometimes it clicks, this business of working our own program. Then I was asked to lead the noon meeting (thank you, God), where I got to be honest in a safe place and talk about walking through sadness by working with gratitude. It was a great spiritual uplift for me, as it was for you. Hope your Higher Power blesses your socks off today.

  13. Can you send some of your positive attitude and abundance over here please? Just kidding, you already have. I am learning slowly but surely.

  14. I've dealt with that myself recently - I wonder what is one to do when the SO more often than not doesn't want to participate...that's my quandry!

  15. Great post, I hope to be as at peace as you seem to be one day. I'm sure it will come with practice. Everything just takes practice.

  16. I've read this post several times and it always chills me a little when your wife suddenly becomes 'the alcoholic'. I know it is a distancing device that is common in Al-Anon but it seems so objectifying. Like a way of punishing someone because they aren't far enough along the road in recovery. or just a way to protect yourself by making her synonymous with her illness.

    I do this kind of distancing too, so often in AA, and need to look at when it helps me and why it disturbs me so.

    Your posts make me think so hard, Syd!

  17. I can completely relate to this. In 25 years of recovery, recovery in relationships, and sponsorship, I've learned that (against the stereotypes), men are often more romantic than women - especially in situations like this.

    Glad to hear of your healing and willingness to move on.

    Blessings and aloha...

  18. Oh yes I sometimes think the plans I make will be what my partner likes also...Well this isnt always the case. Even when I have talked it over with him he changes his mind. Then I have to take care of myself in it all...and not feel guilty if I take care of myself.
    Very inspiring blog and how you took care of yourself.
    One steppin

  19. I'd like to chime in with Mary LA about not being fond of when you call your wife "the alcoholic." It always bothers me as well - like it's a label you put on her to somehow balance out your disappointment.

    I suppose it is my own issue -- I hate to think of my husband considering me "the alcoholic" every time I did something that displeased him.

    I'm sorry you cancelled your trip. Had it been me, I might have taken it on my own or brought a friend. It might not have been the romantic interlude you'd imagined, but then you wouldn't be putting the ball in her court to make the weekend into something she wasn't up for.

  20. I don't think there's anything wrong with hoping something works out... expectations, yea those can be treacherous but we can't walk around not hoping for things to happen etc. All the lines are so fine... I hate that your plans didn't work out. But, it's good you've chosen not to let it ruin your day completely.

    It's tough being in a relationship with an alcoholic... My wife and I are both sober (thank God) in AA. It can be a real "mood filled" adventure lol.

  21. Just got to visit some of my friends this morning, I am sorry I missed this post because of other matters here. I hope when your weekend is over you will feel much better.



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