Note: In a departure from sharing chapters from my manuscript, here are real life stories that you may find interesting. Hope you enjoy.
May I maintain a sane and reasonable way of thinking so I can handle relationships and life's challenges with love and understanding.
May I respect those that I love enough to let them make their own mistakes and take responsibility for them.
May I learn to let go > just one day at a time.
There's a lot of things in our lives that we don't like and have a hard time accepting. Many of our parents went through hard times and tried to shield us from difficulty and struggles. Before I get too the crux of my message, the paragraph below just states many of us go through life feeling inadequate - and the more materialistic place you're from, the more inadequate you feel. Like I grew up in LA and have lived in MN for almost 15 years. The value systems of both geographies are so vastly different. LA is flaunt it and MN is hide it. So in my case, coming from LA, as much as I accomplished it was never enough. In MN I've learned a lot about acceptance and gratitude. There's always someone with more and for sure others with less. When things were really tough back in 1995, my first AA sponsor stopped me when I was whining and gave me an assignment: find something to be grateful for and write it down. I became grateful for clean air, green grass, listening too the birds sing, the awe of nature - a mother and father goose with their gosslings. Stuff like that.
Advertisers tell us to our teeth should be pearly white, we should all drive sexy cars and have a full head of hair and be beautiful. People with money are equated as powerful so the message we get is we're not okay the way we are. Too many of us spend our time wasting away at work while trying to "make it" and feeling inadequate.
Recently my wife kicked one of my kids out of the house. She'd given him (3) chances and after blowing it for the third time, she threw him and the girlfriend out. Then she told me to sign the car we'd bought him over to him to avoid our being liable for one of his "mistakes." Although I heard and went along with what she said, it was painful - just for me. Because as dysfunctional as the relationship had been, I was mourning the loss of my son living in our home when he got kicked out.
Here's a good example of my dysfunction: I'm accustomed to lousy relationships, my threshold for enduring pain is high, and even though my son has issues, I felt a big loss having him go. The first few days the pain was intense. But after awhile, the pain subsided. Guess what happened?
Girlfriend got a job and so did my son. They were able to find an apartment and are now trying to make it on their own. Now I'm feeling proud of both of them. Annie made the right decision.
Her Al-anon program is working for her.