Via Flight404 and ffffound via the treehouse and the cave.
It was a wonderful mini-holiday. But then something happened. I was stressed and took it out on him. Words came out of my mouth like weapons, frightening me, because it was reminiscent of when I used to drink and wasn’t in control of my actions.
I apologized repeatedly—desperate to be relieved of my guilt. Of course the fact that he immediately forgave me only made it worse.
“I ruined our vacation,” I told him a few days later, when we chatted online.
He assured me that I hadn’t, and referred to all the good times we’d had during our trip.
“I would do anything to take back those few minutes,” I said, and I meant it—I felt there was no limit to what I’d give to go back in time.
He told me to stop worrying about it…we chatted about other things…but eventually I returned to how bad I felt.
He told me again to let it go, and then wrote;
“I like to leave my sadness in the moment, I don’t like to carry it around - try it, it feels good.”
I was so dumbfounded by this simple statement that all I could type back was:
Could it really be so simple? I thought again about my drinking days, and how I finally decided to go to AA. At the end of my 3rd meeting, I wandered alone towards the door, uncertain if this was the right thing for me, and whether I was doomed to feel this terror in the pit of my stomach forever, when an older woman of about 60 came up to me and asked me my name. I told her and she told me hers and remarked that she’d never seen me before. I told her I was new.
“Welcome!” she said, in that impossibly warm and affable AA way. She put her hands on my shoulders.
“It’s going to be OK,” she said, “You don’t have to drink anymore.”
I looked back at her in flabbergasted disbelief. She might as well have told me that from now on I’d have two heads. I realized I’d long stopped considering drinking a choice. It felt like an obligation…a punishment I’d be forced to carry out for the rest of my sad, black-out ridden existence.
“It’s true,” she said, “you don’t have to anymore. It’s over now.”
I remember falling forward and sobbing unabashedly in her arms while others cleared away the empty Munchkins boxes and folded up the folding chairs. As we stood there, the complicated patterns of my life that I’d always thought were set in stone melted like snowflakes on my shoulders. Outside a million conversations ended and a million brand new ones started as the traffic lurched forward, stopped, and then lurched forward again. Birds beat their wings and satellites switched their angles, but this perfect stranger and I kept hugging.