Cold, snowy, rainy and gucky in general. But I jumped into my gym clothes and headed out. Got tons of stuff done, feeling quite accomplished for the day, though there is still plenty to get going on for tomorrow.
Codependency and recovery from it is a tricky situation. Unlike our chemically dependent brethren, we cannot just abstain from our drug of choice. We must find ways to push through sometimes ambiguous social situations to find our way. So this entry may seem a little wordy and meandering, but try to stick with me, even if you yourself aren’t codependent, likely you know someone who is.
Here is a link to a webpage that has codependency definitions on it per CR (Celebrate Recovery) I like this particular handout and this webpage has it printed on their site gratis.
In a conversation earlier today, I was reminded of some incidents that occurred during my younger years. I was socially awkward, to the point of being snobby and annoying because all I knew of social interactions were those I saw on the television or between my family members. Most communication in my family was fairly toxic and manipulative. Feelings and honest expression of negative emotions were suppressed as they were considered inappropriate or inconvenient, or because they made someone uncomfortable. So I had no idea what I felt or how to really talk about the real world. All I knew was the fantasy of television and the “truth” that was approved by my elders.
So, you can imagine when I got to school and encountered my peers and other adults that were normal, this would be a huge shock. I got teased….a lot. In California, after moving to a new school (this happened frequently for the first 12 years of my life) I was beaten up by 2 girls for mentioning that I loved being a bluebird (Campfire girl), and knew nothing about brownies (Girl Scouts). Evidently, this was a huge faux pas. When I came to, I wandered home, dazed and bruised. Usually the torment was limited to verbal insults and cruel jokes at my expense. And, because I didn’t know how to handle it, I likely invited more upon myself by my reactions. By highschool, I learned how to cover my awkwardness somewhat and, because I had my own car, I was allowed to move in the music geek circles, but I was never really very typical.
Fast-forward to a few years ago, and recovery. I am having to slowly untie knots that stretch back as far as I can see. I still suffer a significant amount of social anxiety in new social situations. The recovery cliché that “it’s none of my business what other people choose to think about me.” I truly believe that was written for me. I was so insecure when I entered recovery about other’s opinions. And I still struggle with it. But I now recognize what is happening and I choose to look at it differently, and make a different choice. It is incredibly liberating to have that power.
For so many years, I was at the mercy of the fickle finger of popular opinion…even if it is just the voice in my head that says “I’m sure they will think I’m a bad (fill-in-the-blank-here) if I do or don’t do such-and-so.” To be released of this obsession is nothing short of a miraculous gift. But it didn’t come by me wishing it, or thinking wouldn’t that be nice. It was (and still is) hard work, people.
So, if you are considering giving yourself a meaningful gift this year, give yourself the gift of working the steps. See what miracles are there for the taking. All you have to lose is your pain, and what you gain in return is immeasurable peace.
Thanks for sticking it out, have a lovely night. 😍
Much love , dear ones.