For me or for others?

i had a disarming thought yesterday. I found myself wondering if I’m going to meetings because of my alcoholism (yes, even typing that still has me hunching) or if because speaking with people at meetings – whether it’s through sharing or talking after – seems to help whomever is listening.

The reason I’m hesitant about saying one way or the other is because my name is Kate and, yes, I’m an alcoholic (hunching), but I’m also an extreme empath who likes to deflect anything I’m feeling with whatever other people are feeling. If I focus on what’s going on in Joe’s life it means I don’t need to look at my life. This is one of the things I know I’m going to have to at least address – if not flat out change – as this process continues. And I don’t mean change my empathethetic nature, like I could even if I wanted to, but I do (kind of) want to stop focusing on others so I don’t have to look in that dratted mirror a friend keeps talking about.

I know this isn’t a thing that’s going to happen overnight. It’s not going to happen tomorrow. I’m not going to think too far beyond that because, still, looking in the future and planning stresses me out, but today I’m going to write and talk about it a little more.  I’m going to ask for help a little more. As daunting, nay, terrifying, as these prospects are it’s gotta be something. Maybe that something will be something to start with. I hope so because I’m terrified of the directions this could go in; whether that direction is good or bad. But at least I’m acknowledging that my life could go in a good direction? Either way, instead of walking away from the mirror altogether I’m going to try turning it so I don’t have to look at it, but at least it’s in the same room.

This process can’t be just about the people around me. I’m of no use to anyone if I’m not trying to help myself first.

That’s flipping terrifying.

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6 thoughts on “For me or for others?”

  1. I’m also a very empathetic person. I was told many time in early recovery that I has, indeed, focusing on others as a distraction from, basically, taking my own inventory. And also, that if I were going to “carry the message”, it would “behoove” me to first GET ONE.
    Ouch!
    But so true. If I try to help those in the same faulty-thinking boat as me, I’m kind of getting in the way of their getting help from someone, well, more qualified. Like, someone who’s actually been through all 12 steps with their Sponsor.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. One day at a time. It’s easy for people like me to get ahead of myself, and worry about the past and the future. Find anything that is greater than yourself. It doesn’t have to be anything in particular. For some it’s a group of people, a sponsor, a deity or a thought. Now that you have accepted your situation, you have some very powerful tools at your disposal. I had to realize that i didn’t work so well. We, however gave me amazing strength. Make phone calls if you would like. Read the big book. Pick up a copy of the 12 and 12. The answers must be sought but they are there. Keep fighting, this is your life and you are worthy of living a better way.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. You’ve already begun the process of ego deflation by admitting that you are powerless over alcohol and that your life is unmanageable in it’s current state. The mirror is indeed there. As time progresses, you will gain faith and acceptance with solid step work. I’ve found that the most difficult situations regarding my past drove me to work the hardest, and gave me the largest rewards. This gift of empathy has been used to assist others through my understanding of feelings and situations. It’s a terrific asset that you will learn to use well with time. You’re never alone, Kate.

    Liked by 2 people

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