I never consciously knew that I had thoughts on how I would be after getting sober or when I get to being clear or transparent. I found out I did and up to yesterday I thought it would feel like: me with some changes. Yesterday I found that this specific feeling of ‘me’, or that what I identify with, is actually part of the problem.
What happened? What happened was that my SIL spoke out her worries about me not having an income and living on what’s left of my savings. We were in the car, on the way to the railway station. My SIL started this ‘I shall help you’ conversation and it spun out of control within 3 sentences. I got so cornered that I (finally?) spoke my mind on the subject. ‘I KNOW I am not doing well. I KNOW I need to focus on money but NO it is not working yet. My memory problem is gone and I feel I could maybe work 2 or maybe 3 days in a week, nothing intelligent. But that is it. I know I am NOT functioning yet and YES I DO want and need help but in saying that I do NOT like to speak with you or X or Y on the subject because all I hear is YOUR panic. You are not listening, you start a conversation to inform me of your concerns and it is too much for me because I can not even carry myself! And now I need to deal with your concerns and panic too.’
‘We are listening to you but you just don’t seem to do what we think is right’.
WHOAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA!!!!! Now that is a sentence I thought I would not ever hear again after my mother died. And you know what? I finally replied. Sorry for my SIL. I was mostly able to focus this decennia old anger and let it fuel my persistence and thoughts instead of wanting to lash out and hurt my SIL. However….
‘NO! Exactly that sentence explains how you are listening to me! You do not really listen! Before you even listen to what I want to say on the subject I get overwhelmed by your view, your panic and 10.001 pieces of advice that I don’t even know how to apply because I do not even know where I stand, what I feel and what is wrong with me. If anything I need help finding out that stuff first before I get dragged away in solutions. I lose myself there.’
Lovely SIL replied: ‘Yes, I am sorry, you are right.’
‘I already made important steps towards a healthy and complete living which is not drinking and eating healthy but things just don’t go very quickly. I came from a very dark place. I do not repair easily, that’s one of my things; carry hurtful stuff around way too long. Well, I am already very happy that I wake up singing instead of wanting to jump of the building. That is a big step I have accomplished. But it takes a lot of energy to stay balanced and not fall back into the darkness where I came from. I know things really need to change, I do not want to go back where I came from. Ever. I have made a few big steps already but it is just not easy, it is not a quick fix. And please do not put pressure on me because I just can not bear it. I know it is hard and I think I know you feel helpless, I feel helpless. But can we please stay there and please, I’d rather experience helplessness for what it is than both of us running around in panic. I just can not deal with that.’
And that is how we left because the train was going. I in a mix of sadness, anger, guilt and my SIL in something similar I am guessing.
Got the train, went home and cried. And then there was this thought: ‘You have just spoken out against a very bad system of connecting that has run in the family for years. You just stood up for yourself because you do not want to be smothered in care because you know it is not a good road to travel. Why are you sad? Do not put sadness between you and the world.‘ And I tried to let go of the pain and sadness. And I was proud of how I walked the straight line of caring for me and speaking up. I was proud of my clear expression and because I had spoken my heart clearly there where it was difficult before.
And I could breathe and suddenly felt all this space, freedom and happiness within me. This is so NEW!!! I could not even identify with it. And that is where I thought: the clear me is not ‘me with some changes’. It is also letting go of the sadness, pain and fear that I identify with and reconnect differently. Most likely the ‘final’ me will not feel like the me I am now. Which is scary but I am also looking forward to it.
SIL and I texted today and both said sorry for what needed a sorry and will speak later.