I just finished hiking with one of my favorite people in the entire world. Tuesday Trail Therapy, 4.5 miles of processing whatever comes up or has come up in our lives the past few days. I was sharing how my cup is feeling pretty empty these days with everything going on, most recently a huge fire that caused a friend I dearly love to have to evacuate her home with all of her precious animals. She lives alone quite remotely in the heart of vulnerable fire territory. I have spent substantial time with her at her beautiful ranch with her horses, goats, chickens, dogs, and cats. I love being with her and I dearly love working with her horses. We have gotten to know each other very well over recent years, first as Co-Master’s Swimmers.
I freaked out in terror when I saw an enormous flume of smoke right in her area, looking East, as I drove home Saturday in the very late afternoon/early evening. I knew she must be stressed and anxious; the threat of a fire is her worst nightmare, understandably. I could not communicate with her. I wanted to be there for her. I left work at lunch time on Sunday to help her evacuate with all her beloved menagerie of animals. I was fortunate enough to be able to offer refuge at my place 30 miles south, as I live on acreage and have perfect accommodations for all but the horses. Since her menagerie arrived, we have been “the refuge camp for disabled dogs and others”. We have been thoroughly enjoying our time together, while at the same time trying to find updates on the fire to find out if she is clear to return yet, which has not been easy. We still are not sure.
My son and grandson spend time at my place, a wonderful gift in my life. I try to be fully present with them as much as I can. My grandson is newly seven and very animated. I adore him and his father. I love to share my cooking skills and my bounty of food with friends and family, which means I grocery shop and cook frequently. I like my house to be very clean, and that means major effort to keep it that way. I am involved in a lot of activities and projects. I have a very demanding job that I love, with a hefty commute to boot.
Our Tuesday trail therapy discussion today focused on how much better it feels to nurture ourselves rather than grab a bottle to numb out. It is refreshing to recognize when our cup starts to feel empty. We become more choosy about how we spend our precious time. We learn, slowly and over time, to put ourselves as our top priority, rather than trying to be the all TO all which leads to feeling completely depleted. We discover how much better it feels to nurture ourselves and give ourselves permission to opt out, to rest, to say no rather than feeling obligated and then resentful, and irritable because we feel drained. We recognize when our cup starts to feel empty, which is me right now. We celebrate how much better it feels to nurture ourselves with healthy choices over numbing with a bottle.
Sober life is a rebirth. I am feeling all my roller coaster of feelings, my emotions, at higher decibels -and learning to BE with all of them, to let them in instead of escaping them. I am more peaceful, much happier, my energy is double or better than when I was a boozer, and life all around is joyful. Even when a day has so much stress, like many days currently with COVID and heat and masks and shaming everywhere, even with all of it, I have no desire to reconnect with The Booze Bitch. I broke up our long love affair. I fell completely OUT of love with her. She was the devil in disguise, the deceitful dishonest seducer, the betrayer of my trust and highest hopes. Now I am independent of her control over me, my spirit is free! I am full of inspiration and love for myself and others, and on a path that is making me proud, fulfilled, and courageous. I trust myself and I treat myself as my very best friend. Because I AM.