May 5

INTEGRITY MONTH: DAY 5: “Integrity is the only thing in life a person can truly call their own. You can have your freedom, your fortunes, your loved ones taken away by others; but only person that can take away your integrity is you.” ― Joshua Paul Anderson

Those of us who have had lives of constant intervention, where people, places and things have been removed (most of us!) understand the beauty and perfection of having this one thing that NO ONE can take away.

I remember sitting in a meeting very early on in this recovery experience, and someone saying that their recovery was the first thing they had ever had that NO ONE could take away from them. I have been a big fan of that ever since. It is the truth.

I claim it…I own it…I resonate with that kind of truth. And I will defend and fight for both my recovery and my integrity with the weapons (tools) of Steps 1-12. They are the golden key of my freedom and my love and my soul today. Along with the weapons with which I defend my integrity and my honor and my recovery from all possible attacks and the greatest foes I have ever fought…THE SCREAMING PURPLE MONKEYS!! (SPM)

There is no greater enemy or warrior with which I must do battle than the lies, deceit and insanity that are part and parcel of my own lovely mind.

It is the thing that tells me in a thousand different ways, all the time, every day, that I am unworthy, unloved and unlovable, disgusting, the best AND the worst, blah, blah, blah, blah…on and on…ad nauseum.

So, I must guard, not from you or you or you or you, but from myself and the crazy that lives in my head all the time.

We learn how to not buy into this shit, each day, in more and better ways, more deeply and more lovingly, with each Step 5 we perform. At least this is my experience. Over these many years, there have been so many of them! I would hate to think that any single one of them could have been left out, because I would not want to let go of anything that has come to me as a result. Becoming totally honest with YOU, GOD, and MYSELF has been the greatest high I have ever had. And I love that I found this quote that brings me back to the day, early on, sitting in that meeting and claiming myself, my recovery; and now, my integrity, for all time.

I will not give it up! I have not since that early day and I will not now, when it has become so much more precious than I ever could have imagined!

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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