Wednesday, June 6, 2012
Last night, the Tuesday night group had a nice celebration for one of the long time members in Al-Anon. She celebrated 30 years and talked about the turning point for her. It came when she was told that her alcoholic son had a Higher Power of his own, and she wasn't it. To her, that simple statement meant that she could stop trying to force her will on her son. She could let him go to find his way, entrusting him to a power greater than herself. I have heard her story many times and remembered the first time she shared that she could finally not carry all the burdens of others on her shoulders. Her words helped me to shrug off the weight that I carried for so long.
Vanity, ego and stubbornness were my enemies when dealing with others. If only the person would do what I said, then all would be okay. But people have their own minds, their own time table, and their own shortcomings. It was presumptuous of me to think that I could make another person do as I wanted. The cost in energy to my being was huge.
Now when I see a person stumble, I offer my hand, a word of encouragement, but I don't try to fix or change them. Many times I have bitten my tongue when I see what I think are mistakes a person is making. But who am I to say whether what they do is a mistake? Their beliefs and actions are theirs to own. I know that our paths may diverge and that is okay.
At some point, there will be a turning point for each of us, a place where we either realize that the path we are following is folly or one that will lead us to where we were hoping to go.
In every life there is a turning point. A moment so tremendous, so sharp and clear that one feels as if one's been hit in the chest, all the breath knocked out, and one knows, absolutely knows without the merest hint of a shadow of a doubt that one's life will never be the same.— Julia Quinn