A Rebel Without a Cause
My sister was asking about my recovery. She said, “you used to rebel against everything and everyone, so why are you listening to people now?” Strangely enough, I ask myself this same question everyday. I wonder why I decided to change, what prompted it? Was it that I was ready? If so, how lucky am I that I was sent to treatment at the right time?
Balancing Your Inner and Outer Worlds
If I went to treatment before I was ready, I would’ve continued living the unbalanced life I was so accustomed to.
You see, before I ever picked up a drink or a drug, I was unhappy and unbalanced. I could never be alone, had boyfriend after boyfriend, didn’t have a regular sleep schedule, and sought approval through other people.
I remember being taught about how to bring our inner and outer worlds into balance at the women’s treatment center I attended.
I realized both my worlds were polar opposites. I was pleasant to friends and horrible to family. I smiled at teachers but inside felt lonely and afraid. I would get high at 8am and go to class.
Nothing in my life matched. My inner turmoil was largely because I wasn’t living right, but held others to impossibly high standards.
I found serenity and peace ONLY when I vowed to keep my inner and outer worlds connected. I learned this in treatment and still practice it today. The best way I know to keep these worlds connected is by doing the next right thing.
When I’m confused about what the right thing to do is, I try to access the part of myself that whispered, for the first time, “I’m Fiona and I’m an alcoholic and drug addict.”
Some call this their higher power. Some call it a conscious. Some simply call it being a decent person. Whatever this part is, it allows for true honesty. It can be hard to access, though, as honesty was never my forte.
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Filling the Void
Once women put down drinking and drugs, they find something else to fill the void. This could be work, a significant other, money, or an eating disorder. Whatever form it takes, this becomes their new addiction. As one unhealthy behavior is put down, another is picked up. I see this happen time and time again.
These unhealthy behaviors can lead to relapse, as they’re unbalanced and impulsive. They’re sisters to the chaos and drama we’re used to in active addiction.
Doing the Next Right Thing
As a rebel, I despised the word balance. It signified everything boring and mundane in this world. The addict in me still thinks this way, still craves chaos.
Yet, that truthful part of me asks, “What’s the next right thing?” Whatever the answer is, it usually takes the form of balance, where my inner and outer worlds meet.