I had the opportunity to listen to some people over the past week share some of their takes on recovery and it’s amazing how everything I hear expands what I already have. If I have said it before take what you like and leave the rest is one of my favorite suggestions in my recovery program. It’s reassuring to know that I don’t have to hold the same views as everyone in the room, but at the same time, some part of what they say may be applicable to my situation.
Context is a funny thing. I often wonder what people get when I share from certain parts of my life that might not be as relatable. For example, I often talk about some of my nerdy hobbies and tie in Alanon principles to get a point across. Part of me thinks well I shouldn’t have shared that the I remember my favorite phrase. Maybe what I shared meant one thing to me but it might dig up something else for the person across from me.
It’s important for me to realize not just in recovery group but in life that I only represent me. On one hand that can make me feel powerful to have and opinion and on the other hand I feel lost in can feel lost in a sea of others feelings. I’ve come to realize that what I share is for me, but it’s taken me time to be genuine.
So many times I approached stories like I was trying out for a talent show. Maybe it was a new comer in the room or just a bunch of people I wanted to impress with my recovery knowledge. I felt like the more I tried to spruce up a mediocre story the less I got out of the night. This made sense because I was used to only doing things to get a certain reaction so it was natural that this unhealthy behavior would follow me into my attempts at recovery.
The cool thing is that over time I realized what I was doing, then came the hard part. I had to understand that I had a choice to continue doing what I was doing or try to dig deeper. The next couple meetings I went to I really tried to listen to what people were saying and that helped me to realize why I enjoyed meetings so much.
What I loved most about the meetings was the raw genuine feeling people put on display. They were not actors reading from a script. These people around the table from me were attempting to live life in a better way. The things they said were not meant to make me feel a certain way. People where sharing so that they could grow and be apart of something bigger than them, even if they didn’t realize it.
Meetings are a small part of my life but they make an impact. I’m learning to be genuinely me and by doing so someone one might hear something they need. The hardest thing for me to understand is that my recovery is about me. I have to remember to keep the focus on myself and stay away from doing what I think is best for someone else..