Wednesday, November 5, 2008

hope (less)

Last week, over at Andrews Addiction, Lou wrote an entry titled "True Lies". Her words rang a bell in me and I commented with the following:

I feel sad most of the time and wind up stuffing those feelings. I think it's wrong of me to feel that way.

No matter how hard I try, for the last year or so, I have been unable to feel hopeful around my child's drug addiction. He's been in recovery, slipped, hit bottom, back into recover, slipped, over and over. I don't even know what the truth is. I believe that right now, he's going to meetings, got a sponsor, trying his best but I don't feel hopeful. I don't allow those hopeful feelings because it ends up with hurt at the end.

Just reading recovery bloggers reveals the litany of pain. Of relapse, of children living on the street, children in jail, children who have lost their lives because of their addictions. Being in recovery myself shows me the constant stream of relapse, of going out, of sometimes never coming back. I know people do make it, but it seems a lot more don't.

I am afraid of expressing that hopelessness because it might get someone else down. I don't want to express it in my blog because it just sounds so negative, so defeated, and everyone else seems so upbeat.

What I do read in blogs such as yours is the tremendous love we have for our loved ones. I believe our love is so very important. I believe that our addicted loved ones know that love and it gives them something extra. A bit more of a chance. Not a guarantee to recovery but an extra life line they can grab if they want to. A place to come if they want help.

I don't feel hopeful but neither do I want to give up. (most of the time.) The strength not to give up comes from the stories of other people such as you.
I've been pondering the difference between hope and expectations and ended up thinking they were both the same. Ended up at a place of acceptance and just let it sit there, not having any kind of satisfactory resolve.

Then yesterday, I came across this quote while visiting "barefoot towards the Light"

Hope is not the conviction that something will turn out well, but rather the certainty that something makes sense regardless of how it turns out. -- Vaclav Havel

Thanks for letting me share.

photo credit: notsogoodphotography


recoveryroad said...

The negative stuff, and the fear of relapse and not making it back are part and parcel of recovery. Don't worry about upsetting anyone - your honesty is refreshing.

Have a good and sober day. Thanks for that brave post.

Annette said...

Hmmm, hope vs. expectations. I have to think on that some more. In my experience, "hope" has a positive connotation, while "expectation" is more negative. Expectations certainly lead to negativity and judgements in my own soul. They have been a stumbling block for me for a loonngg time. Thanks for getting the wheels of my brain going this morning.


A problem shared is a problem cut in half. If we can't tell fellow recovering friends what is bothering us, who can we tell?

I believe we are here to support each other - when I have hope I pass it on, when I'm without hope, I look to you all to share yours with me.

It's how it works! Thanks for sharing.

AlkySeltzer said...

Hank, I *LIKE* certainty!

Shadow said...

i like the vaclav havel interpretation.

Lou said...

I'm glad I don't see the revolving door of AA firsthand. It would hit home how few make it on a daily basis.
But what a beautiful share from PrayerGirl. I don't think I could make it through the day without hope. But expectations...well not so much anymore.
A perfect quote!

Kathy Lynne said...

I think there is a huge difference between hope and expectations. I cannot have any expectations. Not good or bad because when I do I am trying to control the outcome. I must have acceptance. But there is nothing wrong with hope...hope that someone will find sobriety, hope that our country will recover from the calamity of the past...Hope does not imply expectations but instead is more of a prayer...for the best..

big Jenn said...

Great post. I know this for sure,if I do not know pain, then I do not understand true joy either and I can honestly say I know both. I'm so greatful to be a human being!

Laura said...

Our Hope is in Him....and always it's not so much that we get the result we want, but that we can get through "what is" and still find joy in our moments. I've come to realize that even if Cliff doesn't walk the walk, I will look for moments to savor in the midst. Last night at our table a woman shared about her addicted daughter and that as she drove to see her, she prayed for God to keep her in the day. She left their meeting with a profound love for her daughter and focused on the highlights of her being. Her creativity, her sense of humor and all those things that we don't hone in on when they're using. She decided to stay in the moment with her addict instead of looking for the other shoe to drop. I've tried to adopt that philosophy too.

May God give you the eyes and heart of Hope and Joy in the moment.

A big hug.