May 7

INTEGRITY MONTH: DAY 7:

“It takes gumption to wake up every day to face the fickle world and cleave to your morals and values

Not flinch at the slightest inflection of disrespect or disdain from wild ones

to not give in and mimic the mockery of blending in void of integrity

Standing resplendent among the dull and dirty ones who are no longer enthralled with the light of living

Who’ve renounced their identity for worldly pleasures

It takes audacity to live individually, intellectually, compassionately in your own way

Do it anyway!” ― Emmanuella Raphaelle

There are so many unhappy people in this world. It is so sad to watch their anger and rage, day after day, knowing that there is another way to live.

Not all of them need to stop drinking or drugging. They are the saddest of them all. I watch people, always have, probably always will. I am very curious about all of them, although there is only a small fraction I will interface with at any given point in time.

I watch to see how they navigate the world, their unhappiness makes me very dedicated to appreciating and enjoying my own life. It is a contrast I am happy to live within. There are times when I think I am doing something wrong because I have so much joy in my days.

I was raised by a chronic malcontent. Not only was her life miserable and full of grievous wrongs on all sides, but it was (and still is) her only refrain. And it is ALL the fault of everyone around her. Life is very disappointing and miserable for her. I am grateful for seeing this and the gift of being able to do all I can to be anything other than that.

We get to live fully into our choices. We make them, and they make us. Whatever unhappiness may result is ours to claim. We can call these learnings blessings, or we can continue to see how others are wrong.

If we are present to the situation, there is something for us to see in that. There is never a time when we are not to be held accountable for our part in the play. We are here, as I see it, to work through lifetimes of roles. I think it is amusing when we believe that reading a couple of books or a few months of recovery work are going to shift that balance. We will have these things to continue to work through for (perhaps) 50 or 60 more years.

We think (I know I did) that we are done with this stuff in the first 4 or 5 years of recovery. And then there is this mountain of revelation that falls on our heads when we are 30 or 35 years into it that we have only just begun to understand. This kind of recovery does not come (perhaps) in this lifetime. We are just opening the box. I am okay with that.

There would be no point in continuing this work if I had it all down in the first 100 inventories. My awareness was there, but not the healing. Still not the healing, and I have yet to meet the person who does this work to the depth I have. I would love to work with that one! We unspin the cocoon of lies and deception we have wound around our own lives and it takes as long to unwind as it did to wind it. I am hoping to see how far I can get before I die this time. The trip is the best  one I have ever been on, and I cannot wait to see what comes up next!

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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