Saturday, October 24, 2009

More, please

It's time to report in, been a while.

Early this week, I went on an emotional binge. Found a 40 pounder of self-pity and swallowed it all down. I needed to be understood. I needed to be needed. Was going to force my poor partner to understand just how trapped I was. How my life needed to change, I couldn't go on living in these conditions. I even started to think of ending my life, it wasn't worth the pain. Self-pity and anger, a deadly combination.

Lost sight of my Higher Power's stage direction and decided I was going to play the victim.

How is it that when I have something good in my life (and it can be anything), I am never content with what I have. If I go camping, playing in the surf, I become angry on the way back home, when reality starts kicking in? I really enjoy the one course I am taking, and I become angry because I felt betrayed by my employer, forced back to work, forced to withdraw from full time university. I want more. If we are playing board games, and perchance I win, I want to repeat that experience. Even at work, if the job becomes technical and I bury myself in that work, I just want to stay in that experience, my brain afloat in trying to find solutions. One would think that I have never heard of moderation. Can I have more, please?

I've made all the amends trying to repair the damage of earlier this week. It's going to take a while. I carry some shame, as well as guilt, from my earlier behaviours. The guilt is dealt with by making the amends. The shame by telling myself that I am not a bad man, just another person in recovery.

I've been in that place of emotional binging many times. The length of the binge gets shorter and shorter but it seems I can't avoid that spot. I have reassurance from reading Thomas Moore, when he describes life as moving in circles. Circumambulations. How, in each revolution, I still have much to learn, understand, and accept about my own life. Life is a wheel so hang on tight, circumferential forces are trying to through us off.

I am so thankful for the tools of recovery. For simple slogans and understanding people. That I don't have to be perfect, just have a desire to stop drinking. I am also thankful for new comers. So if I get asked to share, I remember what it was like and what happened. Sometimes I forget. I am so happy I am sober and clean today. That even in that emotional surge, I never drank or porned. So grateful to be here with you today.


If you have an hour to spare, visit the CBC Radio program Tapestry podcast and find the podcast titled "Filling the God Shaped Void - Gabor Mate" Mary Hines, the host of the program interviews Gabor Mate, a physician working in Vancouver, Canada's, skid row. It's a discussion of spirituality, addiction, and self.

Photo Credit - AlbeJTD


Tall Kay said...

I think what you have described is all part of the disease of addiction...the spiritual malady of wanting to fill our God shaped holes with anything that will make us feel better...right now. The good news is that we don't have to drink or use over these feelings.

You have shown us a brilliant illustration of how our program works and the 12 Steps get us back on track. It has been my experience that these times keep getting shorter as we learn to practice the principles in all our affairs. Thanks for sharing your E,S and Hope!

Anonymous said...

Welcome back. Don't be so hard on yourself. It's all part of the growing process. It's OK to be a human being. This recent experience will no doubt help someone else. Thanks for sharing,Hank.

Mom of Opiate Addict said...

I had never called this type of behavoir emotional binging but that is exactly what it is. Thank you for that. I often don't do things in moderation which sets me up for dissapoinment when the activiities that I like to do have to come to an end. I forget that it is not forever that I will have to make that drive home from vacation. I am glad you are back.

An Irish Friend of Bill said...

the 'world' cannot satisfy. thats why you always look for something else. its just the nature of the mind.
you just have to ignore what your head tells you and do your lousy best to do the next right thing.

but yeah. the world will always be wanting. it just cannot satisfy. ever. because everything is changing. so you have to look for your 'refuge' somewhere else. not the 'world'
otherwise you will be restless, irritable and discontent for the rest of your life :)
apart from that everything is fine :)

basically. looking for satisfaction in the 'world' alone is a lost cause. peace comes from transcending the 'world' and all its objects

'they loved the world so much, they let it go' as they say
or renunciation, or surrender, as some cal it.
you have to let go of people places and things 'the world'
then life is satisfactory.
so yeah. i wouldnt say it was easy. but the trick is in choosing the most reliable refuge. Buddhists call it 'the deathless'. The place BEYOND 'people places and things'

Annette said...

I like the term "emotional binging" too. This post made me think of how the disease of addiction is also called "the disease of more." We always want more...and while I'm not an addict to substances, I'm an addict to people, so have the same dynamics going on in my life.

Thanks for sharing Hank, I always love reading you. :o)

Syd said...

You caught my attention. I don't do the emotional binging much but when I do, I suffer from feelings of anger at myself. It becomes a self-perpetuating downward spiral.