Alison's Insights

Making Sense of Addiction Recovery in Midlife One Slow Deep Breath at a Time

Once Again, I Have No Control

Yesterday I received some extraordinarily devastating news.  Life threw my family a curve ball we just didn’t see coming.  We got the wind knocked out of us and for a moment, the whole world stood still.

Since that phone call, I’ve been a roller coaster of emotion.  I go from very rational thinking to the deep end of tears in a matter of seconds.

I search for ways to make sense of it all.  I know I can’t control the outcome, but I want to.  I know I can’t fix anything, but I sure as hell want to.  I know I can’t always be the strong one, but I want to.

Ten years ago, this is precisely the type of situation I would have handled by getting and staying drunk.  That’s what I did.  I’d look for any way to numb out overwhelmingly confusing feelings.  Drinking alcohol without eating was my “go to” in order to find comfort and relief from this exact kind of emotionally stressful situation.   In addition, knowing I couldn’t control any of it, I’d make it so I was unavailable not only physically, but mentally and emotionally as well.  If I couldn’t control the situation, at least I could control how I handled it.  And how I did that was selfish and, quite frankly, made matters worse for those around me.

Today I have a different “escape route” which I’ve come to learn by way of the 12 Steps.  First, what I “want” is irrelevant.  How any situation plays out is not up to me.  Yes, I can take action, but it isn’t until I have some clarity of mind I’ll know what action to take.  I find that calm perspective by breathing slowly, taking a moment, and allowing the next right step to present itself.

If I could fix this entire situation I would.  If I could remove the fear and pain from the eyes and hearts of my family, in an instant, I would.  But I can’t.

What I can do is calmly face this one moment at a time and know, without question, the only control is held by a power much greater than myself.

Single Post Navigation

3 thoughts on “Once Again, I Have No Control

  1. Alison, Just found your blog courtesy of a mutual friend, Kristen M. I’m touched by your words and your honesty. Just started blogging myself: in anticipation of the publication of a new book I’ve written, “Dear Ashley . . .” – A Father’s Reflections and Letters to His Daughter on Life, Love and Hope, which was inspired by my daughter’s life and death struggle with anorexia and my efforts to try and make sense of it all. I look forward to “stopping by” to share your thoughts. Keep up the good work. You’re making a difference. Don

  2. I get it. Thank you for your gut level honesty. News can knock us over…and yes, I find the power of what’s much greater than me the only way to navigate the high winds at times. Many blessings to you and your family during this time of extreme stress. ~Patricia

  3. Claudia Donohue on said:

    Beautiful honesty and wonderful advice.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: