After long and careful thought, and much soul searching and prayer, I’ve made a decision to share with others through this blog my personal involvement in recovery and my own story of sobriety. In my personal life I spend many hours a week working with others, as well as continuing to work on my own continued sobriety. Since I am retired I have ample time to offer help and support to others and to try to “be there when anyone anywhere reaches out for help.” I feel blessed to have a purpose. And by helping others I am keeping my own recovery strong. The 12 steps and the fellowship I am part of have truly saved my life and I want nothing more than to give it back and to help others who may be struggling. We all have issues and personal demons. If I can’t talk openly about mine, I can’t honestly and sincerely connect with others, which is the key to helping and supporting others. This is what was done for me ‘in the rooms” and those connections drew me in, offered me the unconditional love and acceptance I so desperately needed, and helped me heal and grow into the strong, sober woman I am today. I am so lucky to be in a time and place in my life where I can spend my best hours giving back what was so freely given to me.
Wishing you serenity and sobriety. Lori Crockett
LEARNING TO LOVE
The golden rule doesn’t work very well for some of us who grew up in dysfunctional families. It didn’t work for me because, as an ACOAsp* I didn’t love myself at first. I loved others more. The basic premise is flawed. Those of us in recovery often haven’t learned to love ourselves. Doing unto others as you would have them do unto to you only works if you have boundaries and know how people should treat you. and most importantly, if you love yourself. If you have been criticized, neglected, and perhaps abused, whether emotionally or physically, it may be hard to love yourself since obviously important people in your life did not seem to love you. Growing up in dysfunction skews the “holy” rules we are fed our whole lives, at home and at church. We are told that Jesus instructs us to love our fellow man as we love ourselves. Same problem. I didn’t love myself at first. I loved others more. So what happens if we don’t love or value ourselves? It’s so much easier to love others-they have what we want and can offer us the love we seek if we just behave right or if we are just good enough or smart enough.
As an adult with 16 years of Sobriety I have belonged to a number of different fellowships over my years in recovery. I have found in recovery fellowships the unconditional love that I craved and needed and missed while growing up. And so now I am learning to love myself and value myself as much as I value anyone else.
So I have turned the Golden Rule around for those of us who have struggled with self worth and boundaries. So I propose a different Golden Rule for those of us in ACOA or any recovery program or fellowship, or those just struggling to heal and grow and blossom: “Learn to love yourself as you love others. Do unto yourself as you would do unto others. Forgive yourself as you forgive others. Love yourself as you love your fellows. ”
For my first blog post this year I want to tell you a little about me….
I love Kaballah
I love Jesus
I love Goddesses, especially Brigid
I love Shekinah
I love the Great Spirit
the Unnamed One
I love my friends
and my family
and all my companions in the fellowships to which I belong.
I love all my pets,
the ones with me now and the ones who have gone on ahead of me.
I love all my lovers, past and present,
husbands, boyfriends and f*buddies alike.
I love my soul and the souls of others.
I love nature and wildlife, the wondrous forces of nature,
and all growing, living things
And today I love living in recovery and
I love life