only love – a meditation

 

only love can heal such a scar

Only love, only love can leave such a mark
But only love, only love can heal such a scar

Only love, only love can leave such a mark
But only love, only love unites our hearts

U2 — Magnificent

We come to Al-Anon when the drinking or drugging of someone we love has made our lives unmanageable. If we did not love them, it would not be so hard, it would not leave such a mark on our lives. Over time, loving an alcoholic can scar our souls, and can affect our lives and our manner of living long after that loved one is gone from our day to day life. In the program, we find a different kind of love. I found the love of my fellow Al-Anon members, who shared their innermost secrets, so that I might heal. I found the unconditional love of a Higher Power, and I know that the God of my understanding loves me just as I am, and wants only the best for me. This new love has been healing the scar in my soul, and my life is all the better for it.

A meditation for January 12, 2013.

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closer – a meditation

closer to perfection

 

 

I may not be there yet, but I’m closer than I was yesterday.

 

 

I am a perfectionist. I want everything I do to be done perfectly. This is not a realistic attitude, it leads to disappointment, and sometimes even prevents me from starting on something because I can’t do it perfectly.

I have learned a new way of living. The slogan “Progress, not perfection” reminds me that I will never be perfect, but that I can make progress and improve myself and my life. There are times when it seems that my life is still a wreck. If I take a moment and look back, I can see that, while it is still not everything I’d like it to be, my life is much better than it was in the past. I am not out of debt, but my debt is smaller, and I have a plan to make it smaller still. My belly is still rounder than I want it to be, but it’s smaller than it was. I still sometimes react angrily to someone’s actions, but not nearly as often as I did a few years ago.

I may not be “there” yet, but I am closer than I was yesterday. For this, I can be grateful.

A meditation for January 11, 2013.

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thinking – a meditation

“…there is nothing either good or bad, but thinking makes it so.” The slogan “First things first” helps me to avoid over-thinking.

thinking

 

 

 

“…there is nothing either good or bad, but thinking makes it so.”

– Shakespeare

 

 

I can very easily over-think things. When I do that, I put my serenity at risk, particularly when I start projecting what might happen in the future. I can very easily descend into what a friend calls “awfulizing” or “catastrophizing”. When I do that, I become more and more sure that the worst will happen, and I bring unneeded fear and anxiety into my life. The program gives me some tools to help me out. One of these is the slogan “First things first”, which can also be expressed as “Do the next right thing.” It reminds me to stay in today, to think about what I need to do now, and to not get too far into the unknown future.

A meditation for January 10, 2013.

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the truth may vary – a meditation

Though the truth may vary,
This ship will carry our bodies safe to shore.

though the truth may vary, this ship will carry our bodies safe to shore

 

 

Though the truth may vary,
This ship will carry our bodies safe to shore.

Of Monsters and Men — Little Talks

 

 

Everyone has their own story, their own truth. In AlAnon, we share our truths, finding our commonalities, and building a ship that will carry us through the storm and chaos of our loved ones’ addictions. Truly, “though the truth may vary”, the ship of the program will carry us safely to the shore of recovery.

A meditation for January 9, 2013.

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Love, strength, and courage – a meditation

Lao Tzu on love, strength, and courage: “Being deeply loved by someone gives you strength, while loving someone deeply gives you courage.”

love

 

 

Being deeply loved by someone gives you strength, while loving someone deeply gives you courage.

– Lao Tzu

 

In the suggested Al-Anon closing, it says “… although you may not like all of us, you’ll love us in a very special way, the same way we already love you.” When I first heard this, I didn’t know what to think. It seemed a bit corny. But I have found it to be quite true. This love was exhibited in my first meeting, when I mumbled something about my situation and cried, and everybody was silent, letting me say my little bit through my tears and sobs. It was shown by the members who offered me, a stranger, their phone numbers. We see it whenever one of us shares from our own heart, that another member may find a bit of solace and help. From this totally unexpected, unconditional love, came the strength to begin to do the work of the program. And, as I did that work, I found within myself the same love for others. I could feel it in the special peace and serenity that descended on me like a blanket, whenever I walked into a meeting. I could feel it as I identified with someone’s sharing. And that love gave me courage. First, the courage of belief in the process. Courage to “change the things I can,” which is only myself. Courage to face those parts of me that I don’t like so much. Courage to own them and to ask my Higher Power with acceptance and humility to remove them from me. And the courage to support others in the program through sponsorship. And as I do, my love comes back to me through them, completing the circle. Truly, we can keep it only by giving it away.

A meditation for January 8, 2013.

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