I don’t recall ever welcoming a new year more than I do 2018. I fell from life hard last July. My “hitting bottom”. I have jokingly referred to that period as “summer of my discontent”, but the joking part of it is weak insofar as humor has ever been concerned. So yes, I embrace the new year and new start to life.
I’m home, something I still struggle to feel that I deserve. Things are not perfect, far from it, but we are working on us and pressing ahead in the right direction. We could just as easily have been in divorce court by now fighting over scraps of stuff, and hating each other despite the underlying love. Yes, that’s what is still there. I’m not perfect, but I’m a good man. One thing I’ve learned about recovery…. I used to think programs like this were where bad people went to get good. I’ve changed my mind: It is where good people go to get well. I have many issues I’m still working on and dealing with using all the tools I have learned and earned.
My wife is a product of a birth “family” which is largely disconnected from reality and one which knows only conflict and how to hurt other people, and they are some of the most self centered addicts I have ever known. Her “father”, who really is nothing more than a sperm donor, has led his entire life thinking and acting only for himself and on things, relationships, actions and thoughts, which benefit only himself. I therefore try to be very understanding and patient when I see little cracks open up in my wife’s treatment of me. She has worked hard and continues to be different from them. They share DNA and very little else, yet every now and then, I see something that has wrestled its way into her behavior. It is always unintentional by this great woman wife and friend. Without thinking, however, she can put me near the bottom of the list of priorities. A couple of examples are when I was stranded with a dead battery and tried to call her. She was not yet in her meeting but did not take my call. Had the call come from one of several friends I could name, she would have taken the call, and assumed that she could talk with me later about whatever it was I needed to call to discuss. Another was in a phone call we had yesterday. She was painting a room which had her attention, and I get that. But she was short with me, obviously bothered that she had to talk to me whilst working on something “more important”. Had her caller ID stated that it was “Angie”, she would have stopped whatever she was doing and talked at length.
So those are just a couple of things which I must view and accept with love and understanding. She is truly doing the best she can and I love her for it. She could have simply cut me out of her life as she’s done so many close friends and family over the years, but she wanted me back. That’s a gift and I’ll never forget it.
When I pray, one of the things I pray for is to receive what my lovely wife says with that love and understanding. Another is that I never ever forget the feeling I had, a physical feeling, when we were headed for permanent split. I still walk down the hallway in my office where I can look out of the window and almost see our home. It was a tickling sick feeling in the center of my chest, very uncomfortable. That’s the feeling I pray that I never forget.