Wednesday, September 26, 2007


The single clenched fist lifted and ready
Or the open asking hand held out and waiting
For we meet by one or the other.
-Carl Sandburg

I am noticing a shift in my response to stress that is another lovely side effect of spending a lot of time thinking about how to heal myself, my marriage, my life...there have been many side effects of this whole recovery business in my life, but one of the most remarkable for me has been this new found ability to turn the other cheek.

From really big, offensive behavior by my husband or others to really small, annoying things like dumb blog comments, dumb traffic problems, or any of the myriad dumb things that used to push me over the edge into nearly paralyzing anger, frustration, and despair never quite touch least not on the good days, and even on the worst days, they touch me less.

I'm learning that all the getting worked up does is get me worked up. Crazy people are going to act crazy. Dumb people are going to act dumb. I don't have to participate in it, put my head space into play...not this head space that I've worked hard to carve out in the midst of all this chaos.

But it's sometimes, really, even better than that I don't get upset. This morning, on the way to work, someone pulled out in front of me. I had to slam on breaks. My coffee spilled on my pants. I breathed deeply, and I laughed, and laughed, and laughed. An incident that could have sent me reeling into a full day of frustration and fixation on the negative turned instead into an incident that started my day out with a lot of laughter.

Recovery, for me, has become this prism, converting the big black shit stream that pours into me from the outside into goddamned rainbows of delight. I don't know why or how I've missed this simple shift in thinking...I don't know why it took the better part of three decades for me to figure out that the key to being happy was, damn it, just to be happy. No one can make me miserable without my permission, and I'm not signing any more slips.

The Junky's Wife is not featuring miserable. Not anymore.


Anonymous said...

turning turds into rainbows since 2007 -- ha!
You are an amazing woman, J.
I'm so grateful to have met you!

Shifra said...

You lucky girl. All it took was a pressure cooker of crazy to make you happy. Maybe I'll try it one day. Its sukkot tonight. Go eat in a hut and make believe you're getting time off that no one else is.

Mary P Jones (MPJ) said...

Isn't it great to live in recovery, where we all fart rainbows all day long? At least, that's what I fart...