I Hate Your Addiction….

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I hate your addiction.

I hate that I know the lingo of your damned existence; the way the words so easily fall from my mouth as we discuss things like “steps”, “triggers”, “and paths to recovery”.

I hate that even 200 miles away I can tell the difference between a call that is missed and a call that is ignored.

I hate that I have learned the rhythm of your tides and I can feel when you are being pulled from the sober river waters and pushed out into the drunken sea.

I hate that your love for me has been drowned by the liquid you crave as I patiently wait for your love to surface for air.

I hate that I can hear your voice as you say my name and know if the next word you are going to say to me is a lie.

I hate that you have made me the keeper of your secret, when sharing your secret would free us both.

I hate that, day by day, you steal away the dreams and adventures that I had planned for us, along with the worlds we were going to create and explore.

I hate that you were once my Salvador Dali, but you have become too encumbered by holding your vice that you have no room left in your hand to hold a brush.

I hate that I can’t yell, I can’t get mad, and I can’t lash out because I fear that every conversation will be our last and, if it is, I want you to leave this world with my love by your side.

I hate your addiction.

I love you.

I love that you are still the boy I became friends with when I was twelve years old and was afraid that I wasn’t going to make any friends.

I love that we used to laugh through class as we would cheat on science tests because you knew I would always get an “A”.

I love that you sat beside me through my depression and never judged me when the tears would fall.

I love that you agreed to any and every idea I had because you knew that, if we were together, it would always be an adventure.

I love that you were always the last one to watch me go and the first one to welcome me home.

I love that you call me every single day in January to wish me a happy birthday because you can never quite remember which day is actually my birthday.

I love that you believe that I am amazing even when my self-doubt threatens to take over.

I love that I can’t picture a life without you because you have become a constant fixture in my heart.

I love that, after all these years, you are still the first person I run to with every failure and every triumph, that you are the man that has loved me more honestly than any other man ever has, and that you are still my very best friend.

I love you.

I hate your addiction because I can’t hate you!

Lent 2014 – 19: And Then There Are Other Days….

Yesterday was tough.  While I was at work I had the opportunity to facilitate the donation of a very large amount of food to multiple nonprofit organizations.  The first two that came to mind were the USO (which sends care packages to our soldiers) and the American Red Cross (which can use the food at disasters they go to or to sell to raise money for the local chapters).  I was happy that I was able to help these organizations and, by extension, help the people that they help.  So I was feeling really good until the Red Cross showed up.  They backed their truck up and we begin to load it.  As I stood there looking at the truck, a wave of emotion came over me.  I learned so much about life when I was wearing that red cross on my chest.  I learned so much about myself as I worked in three different states as a member of the Red Cross Disaster Team.  But that was a long time ago, and that was a different life.  That was a life when my dreams and plans for myself involved making a difference in the world, when they involved helping people who asked for help, helping people who couldn’t ask for help, and helping some people who didn’t even know that they needed help.  

Man!  How did I get so far off course?  How did I end up doing nothing that I set out to do?  How am I 32 years old and still just coasting through life day by day?  The easy answer is that I changed my priorities.  I decided to pursue an education and I am so glad that I did.  I decided to move out of state, and I am grateful for the opportunity.  But why have I not made it back yet?  I was supposed to be back “home” by now; back “home” in the life that I thought I wanted.  I was getting really down on myself when I realized that there are people in my life who would never have been here if I didn’t take this path.  And, can I honestly look at any one of them and say, “I would trade you for a different life?”  No way!! I am here! There is a reason that I am on this path.  There is a reason why I diverged.  There is a reason why I feel this longing to get back to something that once was and something that could have been.  As I was ruminating on this an older coworker/friend of mine showed up and started chatting with me.  I shared with him some of these thoughts and he offered some helpful insight.  But, what really got to me is what he said as he walked away.  

For years I have longed to hear my father’s voice and listen to any insight that he might offer about my life.  I have dreamed of knowing what he thinks of the woman I have become.  I have called out to him to ask for guidance and, every now and then, I hear his answer whispered in the wind or carried to me on the waves of Lake Huron.  But, more often than not, I am met with silence and loneliness.  So, as I sat and berated myself for straying from my path, my friend reminded me that many people lose sight of their goals/dreams/plans and that is okay, as long as you don’t lose sight of who you are.  And then, as he turned to walk out of the room, he quoted a line to me said by Jimmy Stewart in my father’s favorite movie, Harvey.  I knew, without a doubt, that while my friend was saying the words, the message was coming from someone else; someone who knew that I would understand the importance of a six foot three and a half inch tall white rabbit.  

So, while I may not be where I was, and I may not be where I intended to go, I know that I am still where I am meant to be.  I am in a place where I can realize what was and what is and make the choice to create what will be.  This is my story and I am thankful to Harvey for reminding me of that.