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Fear and Timing

Sooner or later we understand that although we can’t make fear look pretty, it will nevertheless introduce us to all the teaching we’ve ever heard or read.

— Pema Chodron (When Things Fall Apart)

The reaction an individual has towards fear will either set them back, or set them free. That may be a lengthy mantra but it is original to me, and I have believed in it for a long time. I have feared a lot of situations in my life, both at various times and within various settings; and now I face a new one.

I have struggled the last few months to find an increase in purpose and identity. The feeling has become an annoying, gnawing pest that needs to be addressed. In order to eliminate the feeling I have tried writing (a novel, a series of short stories), recording music, photography (everything posted is from my camera), wood turning, landscaping my yard and restoring a classic car. All of these interests have helped, however, the void is ever present and I believe I’ve known why this entire time.

I feel the need to share a story of recovery, my story. This is not a generic story of beating the demons of addiction; no individuals story is; that’s what scares me. Each story is unique and carries a deepened meaning of life that cannot be looked over. I have been able to open up in small settings and flay complicated life issues in those moments, but never to a mass audience.

My story, like anyone’s, is large and consists of fights lost and of fights won, of time lost and time gained, of damning loss and redemption and of coping through it all. I too have asked if the cards I have been dealt are fair. I have seen the loss of others, watched my own downward spiral, instigated it and fearfully avoided change through eight years of active addiction and a damaged mental state.

Whether addiction recovery and mental health is a familiar territory or new one, I encourage you to provide input of achievements, struggles to triumphs or just a warming quote to ponder. It is healthy to generate inspiring conversations and to read the accomplishments of others. So I am deciding to act upon the timing of fear and put myself out there in a new way. My comfort zone will be fearfully tested with this blog, however, I am hopeful that embracing fear and vulnerability will bring the soulful increase I have sought.

Through this cathartic blog, I selfishly hope to find that purpose I have been longing for in my long-term rehabilitation. Additionally, I hope to selflessly inspire others to do the same. There will be humor, sad dealings, inspiring moments and the occasional conflict of opinion. I plan to list books, music/songs and other media I found helpful in my recovery at the end of each post. So, if its drudgery to read through my story of addiction recovery then please enjoy the posted Inspirational Suggestions located at the bottom. In sum, let’s just see where this goes and enjoy the ride. Fair enough?

Overall, I am not confident if my story will be a healing balm or pure acid for individuals (self deprecation is a characteristic of mine). Though I am confident in saying that I have come to understand sobriety, I have a sober understanding, or as I have coined it in my life: Soberstanding.

If you are a person experiencing your own addictions (drugs, alcohol, opiates, eating disorders, body dysmorphia, gaming, gambling, food, sex, excessive exercise and pornography to name a few) or you are the recipient of a loved ones addiction fallout, this may be a blog to help shed perspective. With new perspective comes strength and risk. Those two features are great tools to have when fear approaches. We do not always know when, we just need to know how to deal with navigating a successful outcome.

Inspirational Suggestions:

Book: When Things Fall Apart (Heart Advice for Difficult Times) by Pema Chodron

Music: Hold your Ground (Album & Song) by Todd Whitener (Artist)

Quote: “We can’t make fear look pretty” Pema Chodron

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