Exhaustion is the result when I use my energy in mulling over the past with regret, or in trying to figure ways to escape a future that has yet to arrive. Projecting an image of the future, and anxiously hovering over it, for fear that it will or it won't come true uses all of my energy and leaves me unable to live today. Yet living today is the only way to have a life.
-from "Helping" in the Nar-Anon Blue Book
Another way that codependence and addiction fit together so horribly perfectly occured to me last night. We codependents have a tendency to look at the past with regret and indulge in the pain that it gives us and to look to the future with a paralyzing fear of what is going to happen. The addicts we love, however, are trapped in the present moment.
When I got home from my meeting last night, my husband was miserable. He's been to work two days, and he hasn't made any money yet. Instead of embracing the fact that he has a job, that he's on the right path, that he's going to make money eventually, he fell into a pit of self-pity, shame, and despair. Somehow, he'd convinced himself that as soon as he started working, everything would be better. He thought he'd go to work, quickly make piles of money and be able to pay me back and start paying bills, and then everything would be fixed. I tried to caution him against feeling like his job would fix everything. It's a new shop, and there's a chance that it will be slow for several months, even. He needed to believe that going to work would fix it so much that he's really disappointed.
I wish he had a sponsor. He needs someone he can call. I wish he had someone to talk him through this stuff that isn't me. I wish I could fix it, fix him up.