December 16

LOVE MONTH: DAY 16: “A joyful heart is the inevitable result of a heart burning with love.” — Mother Teresa

Humans want to be happy. I am sure all other life forms do as well. I am not sure where the line is that decides which life forms do not strive for happiness. Perhaps it is thriving that we all seek.

Whatever that is, it is certainly a human condition.

My heart is joyful when I am involved with making myself happy. That goal kept me loaded and drunk for a long time. I could not be happy with my life as it was, so I pretended to be happy and high.

It did not work. The higher I got, the more unhappy I got. Things around me seemed to conspire to “make me” unhappy.

So, I began this process of recovery. I began to get rid of my old ways of thinking. As that happened, I noticed that I often felt better. Who knew? Curious, I dove in…to see if MORE work would feel even better…yeah, I AM and addict!

The truth is this. When I forget about me and what I want, I can focus on YOU and what I can do to help and love you. The whole thing starts with acceptance. When I accept me and you and life, I am okay. When I begin to fight any of that, I fall out of acceptance and begin to feel afraid and alone and angry. (Victim!) Ugh!

So, I find that when I practice Acceptance, then practice putting myself down and giving me to others, I feel love for me and for them. Okay. And gratitude brings me love every time! Because I am acknowledging that everything is okay and WAY better than what I can create, even on my best and most creative day!

And the practice of Step 12 is always going to bring me face to face with others. They see my joyful heart, overflowing with gratitude and love, and I now have a message to carry. This is how it works for me. I don’t know how it will work for you, but I am pretty sure it will work.

And so, it goes, on and on. Acceptance, gratitude, love.

My heart is full and overflowing…so much joy, so much love. And the love I have is for life! That surprises me. I thought there were conditions for me to love life…money, partner, homes, cars, travel, career, etc. I did not know I could just love life because of the surprising way it unfolds; because I can let go of running the Universe and let it be the way it is intended, without input by ME. Wow! This is great stuff!

I love, love, love how this works! Even when I am not working all that hard to make it go around. My heart is filled with joy. I hope yours is too. It is that season and that step. And it doesn’t come from the department store, the toy store or in anything you can buy. It is for fun and for free, as Chuck C. always said. I love that too!

Published by: Kelly

I am a therapist and counselor with long-term recovery from addictions and personal trauma. My writing reflects these experiences and the road I have traveled in 12-Step recovery settings, along with the work I have done for over 30 years in the field. My love of dolphins includes the stories of them being healers in places all over the world. I long to offer every broken spirit and body the experience of a healing hug. May my words and stories inform, uplift and delight your spirit and soothe your weary heart.

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