So I took some flack on my recent post, “Hosting a Pastry Chef: A Silver Lining from my Past.” A mutual acquaintance of C. contacted me…and quite bluntly, I don’t trust him, or his motives. C. had even told me in one of our last conversations before he violated his probation and went back to prison, “If he contacts you, just ignore him. I’m sorry he’s bothering you.”
Well this individual thought my post wasn’t honest in fully disclosing all the details and specifics about my using, and that I was judging C.’s recovery/sobriety.
First, the irony of the two statements was lost on him. He thought I was judging C’s recovery, and yet then…he turned around and “judged” my recovery. Enough said. I have only my HP to answer to.
Second, it was not my intention to make it sound like I was better than C., or less than. We both are recovering addicts. Relapse is part of my story. The bottom line is we only have today. And that’s enough. Full stop. So, if it came across to others as if I was judgmental, let me be clear: I’m human, C’s human. I’m not perfect, nor is anyone. I don’t consider my recovery better (or worse) than anyone’s. The only standard I have is my own, and I only have today to worry about. Full stop.
Third, while at this time, I choose not to have this person (or others from my past…) around because of the risk that I will use again, or allow myself to be taken advantage of…that doesn’t mean these guys are bad people, or beyond hope of change. So the door is always open to reconnection in the future, if I feel that the risk has reached a reasonable point – and that I’m more confident in my recovery and choices. So, if C. or any others ever read this and wonder “is the door closed?” — absolutely not. (Now, I may not choose to let you stay here in the future, based on my experience and self-awareness of what I’m able to handle. But, that doesn’t mean a friendship is out of line, or that I don’t care and want the best for you. But, my trust must be earned back through actions…)
Lastly, my post was completely honest. There was nothing false in any of my statements. Having said that, I don’t necessarily have to disclose every detail, every timeframe, every nuance for a story to be “truthful.” There are aspects that are private, that are relevant in other situations or audiences, and again: see the earlier comments. I have one to answer to: my HP; I do not compare or contrast my recovery to other’s. It’s not better or worse. I tried to stay focused on facts, and lessons that I took away from the experience – including especially (his gifts, passions, and things I learned from him. But the facts also included lies, deception and being taking advantage of (which clearly means that I let myself be taken advantage of). As my mom always said, “it takes two to pick a fight.” So, I’m neither blameless, innocent or perfect. But, this was my story – my insights. As a friend one shares:
“All of my stories are true, and some of them actually happened.”
The real lesson in these stories (as I share more…) is that I can only save myself. The Serenity Prayer reminds me:
“grant me the serenity to accept the things I can not change (usually other people, places, things…), the courage to change the things I can (me, my actions, my beliefs), and the wisdom to know the difference.”
As I love music and see certain songs as gifts from the Universe to guide me and remind me of experiences, or Truths, let me close with a clip from my friend (!) Garrison Keillor and Suzy Bogguss, a frequent guest on his radio show (and many of her songs have touched and moved me…hmmm). This goes for C., M., J., G., and others who I’ve tried “to save…”