Someone else blogged somewhere today about sitting with their feelings. It reminded me of a time early on in my recovery.
I was cooking in the kitchen with my wife – there was progress for a start. No histrionics etc. just working together. A song came on the radio. “You can have this played at my funeral” my wife said. Now the song was essentially a farewell to the love of someone’s life. I was both sad (mention of funeral) and happy (due to subject of song… which I assumed was directed at me!).
I sneaked upstairs and called an AA friend. I explained I was having two feelings at once. “Is that normal?” He chuckled like so many AA friends do to me at times. “No one can deny how you are feeling. That is the only true reality for you your emotions in the moment right now”. I was stunned – forty something and I’d just spent all my life running from feelings, avoiding them and simply this was truly life defining for me at that moment. He did point out that he didn’t think it likely to be unusual by the way.
In my development in my recovery that was one of those light bulb moments where the earth shifted a bit and I suddenly looked at everything through a new filter. That was when I realised that for me a large part of my alcoholism was simply about me having an emotional disease – or as I think of it an emotional dis-ease. I separate the dis and ease because I don’t sit easily with emotions, good bad or indifferent, ideally I like numb.