Monday, February 1, 2010

To build

My partner and I spent the weekend in the big city, visiting our daughter and her partner. We had a weekend full of walks in the rain forest, walks in the city, had adventures in public transport, tried new foods, and were followed by a trombone and a drum in a room full of cacophony. They were great hosts. Our conversations were rich, full of recovery and growth. When we were sitting on the ferry on the way home we felt a bit sad that we were leaving, a sign of a great visit.

I am struck by how many bloggers are writing of of suicides, of people they know of or people they were close to. It's been a rough month of reading, not knowing what to comment. It hurts to read of people taking a long term solution for a short term problem. The pain does pass, if we take care of ourselves and do the work.

In the past few months, I had drifted into that deep dark valley of depression. After I shared about it at meetings, I noticed that I was becoming more alone, more isolated. People are attracted to a positive message. I was fortunate to have this blog to work out some stuff, and understanding sponsor who was patient with me, a partner who is supportive and loving, as well as bloggers who left insightful comments. Suggestions that service will be the best tool possible, to work with new comers. I am thankful for the support. As well, I was recently councilled that the solution would be of my own creation, not something I will find. The clouds have lightened but not passed.

I have some exploring to do, akin to another fifth step. Not sure where I am going to explore this. My partner and I have signed up for a three day course hoping to spark some renewed creativity in our relationship. We get to find out later this week if there is enough folk enrolled for the course to fly. Fingers crossed.

Compassion is a word that keeps popping up for me. Compassion, in spite of feeling fearful. The ability to love and support another human being, just to be with them and listen to them. To be able to say "I see you." To have compassion, even for myself, does not come easy or natural to me. I hope to explore that here.

Bill W, who deeply struggled with depression, wrote this in a private letter (1954). It is from a reading titled 'Getting off a "Dry Bender"' from The AA Way of Life:

Sometimes, we become depressed. I out to know; I have been a champion dry-bender case myself. While the surface causes were a part of the picture -- trigger-events that precipitated depression -- the underlying causes, I am satisfied, ran much deeper.

Intellectually, I could accept my situation, Emotionally, I could not.

To these problems, there are certainly no pat answers. But part of the answer surely lies in the constant effort to practice all of A.A.'s Twelve Steps.

Just for today.

Photo Credit: True2Source


Elizabeth Fry said...

I too struggle with depression and sometimes it is very hard to believe that this too shall pass. And although I was always able to feel compassion for others, I had to learn to feel it for myself.

I hope enough people sign up for the course, my fingers are crossed.

Syd said...

I think that these dark periods do pass for most of us. For those who are clinically depressed, it may be a different story. But there is help to be found regardless. My mother had major depression to such an extent that there were times when she did not even know me. Yet, she was helped by medical treatment. I see that there are solutions in the 12 steps for me. I am grateful for that.

Anonymous said...

Keep trudging we must, one day at a time. Great post! Thanks for sharing the good stuff and the sometimes not so good stuff every day. That's how we learn from each other.

Susan Deborah said...

Just keep talking to your problem and sadness and ask it to leave. In the process, you know that it has gone. We are all standing with you urging you to move move move on.

God bless you.

Courage, passion and joy always,