Saturday, August 26, 2006

Will Our Hero Slip Back Into Darkness?

I have been feeling insecure about leaving the job this week because I don't want to stop working with L. (see previous posts). She is such fun to be with I can't imagine what it will be like not to work with her every day. But there's more to it than that. L. has been my chief aid and inspiration in my attempts to find understanding and happiness. She has talked to me, listened to me, instructed me, prayed for me. And in a short and remarkable space of time I have found a new enthusiasm for life, a new balance in life. Sometimes, in the past couple of months, I have actually woken up in a good mood and dared to entertain positive hopes for the future--which, considering I wanted to stop living only a year and a half ago, is a pretty big statement.

Consequently, I am not only worried that life will just seem a little duller, a little less fun, without her; I am also concerned that I may slip back into my old habits, my old negative ways of thinking, if she's not there (yes, I can phone her every day--though we have been talking several times in a day and that won't be possible when I change jobs--but I won't see her every day like I do now: given our conflicting schedules now it could be weeks before we meet in the flesh). But the thought occurs: if my recovery--my flight from the darkness--is a real one, I have to be able to go it alone, to walk unaided, or how real is it? There are going to be setbacks along the way; I'm going to meet people who bring me down, I will suffer reversals that challenge my self-confidence, all manner of imps and demons will attack me and try to drag me back into Hell. If I want to avoid that fate (and Hell is where I've been), I can't rely on one person to protect me--even if that person has enough love to go down into Hell and fight the Devil himself to reclaim her loved ones. It's unfair to put so much responsibility on another person, however tempted you are. It's an abuse of your happiness too.

You've got to adapt to what is, like I said in an earlier post. Adapt to what is and find the pearl at the heart of it. At 41 I may not have too many years left in me, and if I want them to be good ones, I have to be ready to fight for them. I'm running out of days I can waste moping around in an untied dressing gown, unshaven, not flushing the toilet, believing tomorrow or next year I can put all the stray pieces together and finally make a success of my life.

4 comments:

Bobby said...

It sounds like that is a great friendship. You have gained so much. Sometimes it's hard those precious attributes in new people.

I hope you fall in with good people.

Keep your friendship going with L, man.

Bruce Hodder said...

I have definitely gained a lot from knowing her, B., though of course you learn something from everyone.

I can't imagine NOT having her friendship now, and I've only known her a year. All of which sounds a little over-enthusiastic, but we're so good at pointing to the things that AREN'T right, we ought to be able to make a big deal about the things that are...

Janey... said...

We are such social animals...so much so that deprivation of interaction with others has resulted in the death...

It seems we depend on the interactions with others to be the catalyst for change...
If we find one who inspires and gives us an innoculation of strength...man, you never want to let them go...what a scary endeavor...taking those first toddler steps without holding on...

Bruce Hodder said...

It IS scarey not seeing her every day--though we still talk on the phone.In her company I feel extremely strong. But it must be done. It puts too much pressure on her to be responsible for my recovery from darkness, and all relationships--be they friendships or the other kind--have to move into a phase of relaxation and trust, where the two parties have other adventures and come back to one another invigorated.

I think the reason I feel a little insecure about it--though less so now I've actually made the leap--is that the rot set in with R. when we stopped working together every day. I got a job that meant I was working when she was free, and free when she was working, and an emotional distance crept in with us as the physical distance widened. But that was a particular relationship at a particular time. Things change. And L. and I are already closer than I ever was to R.

Plus I have learned that nothing squeezes the life out of a relationship quicker than holding onto it too tightly.