Thursday, October 13, 2011

Storming within




A weather front turned this warm fall day into a rainy and windy one. That was the atmosphere at the noon meeting too where one of the long timers pounded the table because he has given up, isolated and lost his spirituality over the past two months.

With pamphlets and books bouncing as he pounded, he told of feeling worthless and unloved, of being angry with God for letting his father beat his mother, and for not wanting to trust or reach out to anyone. I imagine that for others, besides me, his behavior was a reminder of unmanageability that we have acted on or experienced from others. Yet, after the meeting, he was hugged and told that he had been missed.

I know my experience of feeling less than and disliked by others comes from long ago rejections. I shared with him that I still can get caught up in a swirl of negative thinking and self-pity. What has helped me to quiet the storm within is knowing that my perception is distorted--not everyone is out to get me. They are most likely just trying to get by and may be experiencing their own moments of doubt and pain due to their shortcomings. We are so similar in our humanness because we each have been wounded by living life. Once I realize that others react because of their own set of circumstances, I understand and have compassion for our human condition. We are all struggling in some way to quiet the storms within. I hope that he will find his way.

16 comments:

  1. I have certainly experienced those same feelings.
    When I am in a "good place" I can look back and realize they were no more than wrong perceptions. But when they were happening, they could not have been more real.
    I hope your friend keeps comin' back.

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  2. And that is about all you can do for your friend. Hope he finds his way. I take that to mean HIS way. And you are right about each of us working on our own stuff. We cannot tell just by looking at another person how much pain they are struggling through or how difficult it is for them to be learning new healthy behavior.

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  3. It's hard to tame the negative thinking sometimes! I know my perception is distorted. He's lucky to have you there to share your experiences.

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  4. Your posts reiterates to me the need for a solid Fourth and Fifth Step as well as Eight and Nine. If our street is clean and we are aware and willing to let go of our character defects, what others think about us is really no matter. We have a 'clean slate' so to speak with which we can move forward in the world that allows us to pick and choose who we wish to have in our lives.

    I hope your meeting member was able to go home with some degree of peace. He was certainly in the right place for venting his anger.

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  5. A reminder of the anguish of unmanageability. My thoughts are with that poor man.

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  6. i hope that he finds it as well...and i am glad that you all were there to love on him reguardless...

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  7. A really meaningful post, as always--thank you. My wish for that person is that he would stop believing in the kind of God who would "let his father beat his mother."

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  8. At my home group last week someone brought up the *expectation* that anyone who has been in the program for a long time...meaning a few years to forever....would have "arrived," would not struggle but would function in this blissful state of Alanon perfection. And the depression when you realize it doesn't work that way. We are all just people doing the best we can. I LOVE that after the meeting your friend was met with unconditional love and encouragement vs. condemnation.

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  9. I love that the rooms of Al-Anon provide a safe place to express our honesty and to have the support we all desperately need. Thank you for sharing.

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  10. All we have is this day. No matter how long we have been at it.

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  11. My husband just quit his long-time meeting because of a change in leadership and direction. His service was secretary and he felt committed. He complained to me about his AA meeting and I said. Quit. Go to a different meeting. Those are your meetings and they aren't supposed to make you angry. He confessed his sponsor had quit the meeting months ago. He's in a new meeting and so much more relaxed. It's principle over personalities, but when those personalities are SO strong, well, that's what doors are for. :)

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  12. Hi Syd, Ms Moon sent me here, because of my experience of an alcoholic father among other things and my efforts to write about it. It's good to meet you here and to read your wonderful writing about these often painful experiences.

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  13. It took many years for my dysfunctional thinking to dig deep roots into my brain, or maybe I was born this way. Change takes a long time for me with periods of seemingly going backwards.

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  14. The peace I have found by realizing everything isn't about me has helped me see that the people in our lives are just trying to survive the same as we are.

    Sure as kids we deserved better but we didn't get it and now we have to move past it. Who's fault is it and if we could hold someone accountable, how would we make them pay? I had to get over it in order to be happy again. I was only causing myself more pain.

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