Yesterday Mary LA quoted St. Clare to me, and it gave me the answer to the question I had been asking myself. I need to live as well as I can, no matter what is going on. That means not complaining about how bad I feel. It means not surrendering to it. It means carrying on. It means praising God in all things. Not separating them into piles of “good” and “bad.”
In the heat, I was only able to do 6 miles. I had sweat dripping off of my now very short hair. I was 100% soaked. But I had my best time in years for six miles (excluding the treadmill). It was a beautiful, albeit hot, morning and I just felt like really pushing it. Unfortunately, I ran out of time.
I had to be at the movie at 10:00 – as it turned out, I was 35 minutes late! I crept into the movie, hoping that somehow I could pick out my friend – I shouldn’t have worried, she was there, waving at me. I only missed 5 minutes of the movie. I cried through the whole thing. And I would not really recommend it. “Hope Springs” – but I am still mad at Meryl Streep for her portrayal of Mrs. Thatcher. And I didn’t really want to watch the trials and tribulations of a couple who loves each other deeply and is just having some problems. I loved Steve Carell in it though.
We went to a fair and then lunch after the movie, and again, I was faced with a time dilemma. I had to get to mass, but didn’t have time to drive from one end of metro Denver to the other. I got out my phone and started looking at times for Saturday Masses. I ended up going to the 4:30 Mass closest to my home. The church I don’t like – with the priest I don’t particularly find inspirational. And of all the weird decisions to make – I think this is just the parish I need at this moment in my life. It is truly a community – in the community in which I live. I know people there. People from work, people from my neighborhood, people from AA. The choir from my old church is there, they left just before I did after the pastor (who drove me out as well) told them they were being controlled by “the dark one.” The singing is loud. All the parishoners sing. Loud. There are old people, and young people, and babies, little kids, and teens. I think I need these people.
I picked up my sober daughter this morning at the shelter. Her life has fallen apart again, but she is still sober. In a shelter. God help us. We went to my home group, where she knows as many, if not more, people as I do. It is a great place for both of us. She shared on topic about the 2nd step, and it was so profound. Although I love my daughter, I tend to be a little teensy bit critical (like I lecture her about the way she dresses for meetings, etc.) so I know I am not being just a gooshy mom. I was dumbfounded by what she shared and the way she shared it. I just have to remember that sometimes having your life fall apart at the seams is really a blessing. She seems to be more clear on that at the moment. She’s sober and she didn’t go running to a man, and those are huge massive amazing signs of recovery for her.
The meeting was wonderful until the last guy talked. He is someone I have known since he got sober, 27 years ago. I once threw a cup of coffee at him in a meeting. I almost did this morning. He was talking about an AA member who had recently committed suicide. After 20+ years of sobriety. And he had to “go there.” Blaming the guy for not going to enough meetings, not “doing the work,” not having a sufficient program to keep him from killing himself! I sat where I was and whispered to the woman next to me, who has also worked in mental health for 20+ years, “that’s bullshit.” “there is major depression, a mental illness” I kind of said more than that. She smiled and said “I know.” “I know.”
After the meeting, I confronted my friend. He looked dumbfounded. He said “You’re right, I hadn’t thought of it that way.” We talked some more, hugged, and I walked away.
Another woman I barely know came to me and said “Thank you.” I said “for what?” She said, “what you said while R__ was sharing.” I told her I had been behaving inappropriately, and I was sorry. She said “no, thank you – I have bipolar disorder and sometimes I feel like I can’t stay in meetings and listen to this stuff for one more minute.” We talked for a while. I feel so bad that she feels that she can’t be understood. And maybe I am an inappropriate jerk, but I am glad I said what I said, and I am glad I confronted. And I hope he is serious when he says that he won’t do that again.
My daughter and I had breakfast at one of my favorite breakfast joints in all of Denver. I dropped her off and went on my way to do some more errands before coming home and collapsing and taking a nap….. but I had a text from my son…. can you watch the baby for a couple of hours?
Oh my God. I SO wanted to say no. But what is my life made of? naps? quiet hours at the computer? lonely evenings in front of the television set? NO. I have a family. I will love to watch my little tiny baby this afternoon. We can nap together!
Life is good. I have so many blessings in my life. I just need to open my eyeballs and say “YES!”
Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances. This is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus. — 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18