It's Thursday. And the Thing I Love today is MY TOOL BOX.
I have accumulated if you will, a toolbox.
Now, picture the actual tools being metaphorical tools, say, the wrench is PAUSING BEFORE REACTING, and the hammer is SITTING WITH IT.
Not sitting ON it, a la The Fonz. But just having a feeling, SITTING WITH IT, and not having to act on it immediately and from my gut. I've written before about what an asshole I used to be when I first got sober - the first few years there. I wrote about keeping it zipped in the workplace, and what a gift that is to be able to SHUT MY DAMN PIE HOLE.
But SITTING WITH IT for me, means something happens or someone does something to me (most times it's not TO ME anyway) and I just don't react. Similar to pausing, in fact, right after pausing, SITTING WITH IT can mean the time I just digest. And talk to other trusted people about it. Meditate on it. Just FEEL it. It's OK to just FEEL it. Even if it's shitty and I feel so pressed to react, I still SIT WITH IT today. NOT ALWAYS, but so much more than I used to. I used to drink to not feel this stuff. It was too uncomfortable to feel uncomfortable. And guess what? IT STILL IS UNCOMFORTABLE. But today, that is OK. I can still SIT WITH IT and be OK.
It is yet another tool that is in my toolbox of how to deal with being a functioning member of society these days. I never learned these tools until I got sober. It seems so silly and common sensical, but you see people flying off the handle and spreading their bullshit negativity everywhere they go, so it must NOT be that common sensical. I don't want to be that person any more. Because I was. I was angry and I was bitter for a long time. I gut reacted to EVERYTHING. I made everything about my feelings. And guess what? Feelings aren't facts. Most times things aren't even about me, and if I just PAUSE, SIT WITH IT and develop a plan, things go so much more smoothly for me. And for others, for that matter.
I am not that angry, bitter person anymore because I chose to change. I did a lot of hard work on myself that is still on-going and always will be. COPING SKILLS. LIFE TOOLS. Who knew? These tools I've learned through sobriety and I have a chance to make better choices in my life.
It sounds super hippie dippy trippy, but I'm all about love and compassion today. I want to give people the benefit of the doubt and I want to give second chances. Of course, that's where another tool comes out of the tool box, BOUNDARIES. Healthy boundaries protect me. I am responsible for myself. No one else is. PERIOD.
I know, I hear myself talk sometimes and I want to spank my own face, but this shit works you guys! It's all part of letting go and just being happy. Not fighting so hard against everyone and everything has given me freedom to be genuinely happy. Even the shittiest of times doesn't have to be so shitty, if I use my toolbox and don't rely on old behaviors. Old behaviors make me sad and unhappy and miserable to be around. Old behaviors make me drink.