LOST

So I’ve been watching this series on Netflix called Lost. This is the one that was on TV some years ago, where it is centered on this story about people who survived a plane crash and get stranded on a deserted tropical island.

This will have been the third time I have watched this series, as it has remained one of my favorites of all time.

I enjoy watching this series because every time I’ve watched it, in a different time of my life, in a different space, I see something new and something fascinating. I’ve come to recognize common threads that reveal the truth about who we are a human beings, why we suffer, why we seek, and what can unconsciously drive us.

It reveals the truth about what I’ve been doing to seek happiness and contentment my whole life, similar to how other humans seek, just as these characters on a show.

Characters like Jack, John, Sawyer and Kate, are always on a mission to do “something” to change their outside circumstances, with the hopes they will finally get to where they want to be. They fight and claw and scratch to get “saved” from the island, where it is apparent that they believe they will finally be happier, safer, better off, free.

The illusion of freedom always escapes them. Because no matter where they go on the island, what they do to be rescued, the small victories they win, the food and shelter they find, whoever they rescue, or whoever they kill, they always end up with yet more problems, and they get further and further away from being happy, from being free.

They run from the darkness which is depicted as the cloud of black smoke they call “the monster”, that consumes people in the jungle. Flashbacks intertwine with their present story, of things they’ve done in their old lives that haunt them.

They don’t feel safe in the jungle with the dark smoke, yet at the same time, they don’t want to live on the beach, where their eyes squint, blinded by the light of the sun.

Are these characters so different than we who suffer from alcoholism and addiction?

Is there desire to be saved so different then our desire for inner peace?

When Kate asked Sawyer why he was leaving them to go with John Lock, and stay on the island, when they finally had a real chance to be saved, He said to her “I’m doing the same thing I always do Kate… surviving.”

Is that true freedom?

Making decisions based on fear to merely survive, to just exist, compromising our truth to just stay alive?

Or is there more?

Is there another option?

Even though as the observer of the story, I can see that they just tirelessly run in circles, planning, scheming, either running from something or chasing something or someone else, never getting any closer to what it is they really want, they as characters in the story, do not see it.

Even though I know that they just need to slow down, to pause to see things clearly, and that all they need, in this very moment, they ALREADY HAVE, and all they’ll ever really need, EACH OTHER, they don’t know how to ever pause long enough, to stop to recognize it.

Whether they were together with the ones they loved, on an island or in a city, on a beach or in a park, it wouldn’t matter.

Why can’t they stop running long enough to see the beauty of the beach, the sun, the ocean waves and the coconuts that surround them, in the simple moments spent together, without constantly wanting something else, needing something else?

Why can they only relax in the seconds caught off guard, laughing and playing ping pong on the home made table made with plane parts and twine, before remembering once again that they aren’t home, they don’t have as much stuff, they don’t have as many “things” as they could have, in the way they think they should have them?

And when the THOUGHT sets in, the lightness fades from their faces, the frowns of worry appear again, and they are compelled by that thought that they must go back to planning their rescue.

Rescue from what? It appears they think it’s from the island. When after watching the culmination of their stories three times now, really what they are running from is themselves. What they run from is the darkness, the past, the pain and the disappointment of their lives.

In this series, We watch them work out these issues in their time on the island, we watch them repeat old mistakes or make new choices. We watch them suffer or heal. The ones who make peace with their lives, who forgive, who let go, come into acceptance that the rest of what they will know as life may be on the island, well… they are the ones who evolve and get free.

You may be thinking, how does this all relate to you?

Why should you care about this story?

You should care because this is YOU’RE story too.

You’re island is happening right here, your suffering on this island is optional, rescue is available TO YOU, though not by boat, by plane or submarine.

And your time is right now.

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Insanity

It’s hard not to get swallowed up by the insanity of it all.

When life gets crazy and people get crazy, I just need to stayed firmly grounded in my center. Fear pervades these humans around me and I see all the damage it creates. Fear creates all harm on this planet. It’s the root of it all, which I equate with the darkness.

People hurt other people with the things they do and say. Respect and kindness gets lost. Anxiety increases and ripples through everyone involved. Anger and frustration rise.

Blame gets thrown in all the wrong places, though there never is a “right place” to throw it.

All I can ever do is rest in the fact that I am true to myself, that I do the best I can, that I respect those around me, and I do the right thing. I am unwilling to let the chaos suck me in. I refuse to take on the fear that others try to pass on.

I stay in love and in peace knowing that people will be okay, even when going through emotionally hard times. I always ended up okay, and so will everyone else.

Well Hello There Life!

imageI realize that as I do all these things to figure myself out…

Life is passing me by.

I operate under the belief that I have all the time in the world…

When in truth that is the lie.

It’s an excuse to hide.

I think I’m just making myself better, by analyzing my behavior and reviewing my history…

Yet without balance I am no longer really living.

There is no better version of me…

I’m just me, complete already.

As I wait and strive for perfection, the perfect job, perfect home, perfect romance…

The truth is that “perfect” only exists in my mind, the same mind that will never admit perfection even if perfection were to arrive.

Because the mind will only then want something else, something better.

The solution…

Is to go live an incredibly full and messy life, allowing it to be all what life is.

What better time than in “the now”?

The Maze

Sometimes I catch myself wondering “What the heck is going on? I mean REALLY going on.”

Because my mind is a maze that has me running through it, trying to find my way out, when I don’t even remember how it began.

I get caught in the playing and replaying scenes from my life, over and over, analyzing what has happened, wondering where the answers lie.

I keep feeling like I am missing something, some hidden clue that will unravel this mystery. Maybe it was something someone said, a look, a tone of voice, a gesture, that reveals the truth.

Maybe it’s because I remember so little of my traumatic childhood which bothers me. My mind has me trying so hard to go back and remember.

But no matter how hard I try, the missing memories don’t come.

I am aware that I have a toxic mind, however it constantly finds new ways to trick me into falling right back into the abyss.

It was recommended to me that when I come to see that this is happening again, I remind myself of my name, my age, where I live, what day it is, what time it is, and where my feet are.

I stand planted, feet apart, in my body, and focusing on my core I imagine roots growing far and wide into the earth.

It forces me to get present where my thinking gets quiet.

Very few who have experienced trauma really recover and live happy, joyous and free.

When I hear that it reminds me that I want to be one of those who do, no matter what.

Bad Luck???

I don’t believe there is such a thing as “bad luck”. There was a time when I would use those words to describe the things that happened to me that I didn’t like, or that I labeled as “bad”.

Now I see that everything that goes on in my life is a product of something on my part.

It says in the Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous that “we invariably find that at some time in the past we have made decisions based on self which later placed us in a position to be hurt.”

I had read this line what felt like a thousand times until one day it clicked in a way it never had before.

I finally realized that though I had no control over other people’s actions, and may not have directly caused an action on someone else’s part, that if I went back far enough I could see a decision based on self that placed me in the position to be hurt. Even if that decision was as simple as seeing the signs but not walking away from harms way.

I saw that the chaos that happened in my outer life was a reflection of what was going on inside, that energetically I drew these events to me. If I had an argument, I had a part, because one person can’t argue. If I was treated poorly by someone in my life more than once, just maybe I allowed it.

Once I made a decision to not tolerate abuse, it just fell away from my life. Once I had hit a bottom with drama, it ended. Once I stopped believing in limitations, they vanished. Once I had enough of the kind of relationships that caused me pain and decided I was done settling with them, they didn’t happen any more.

They just may have been my creation, because deep down I didn’t believe I was worthy of love, so I couldn’t allow people who just wanted to love me, into my heart.

The bad news, if all this is true, is that I have no right to complain about “bad luck” because I am the cause.

The good news is that I don’t have to wait on the luck of the world to swing my way to finally be happy and free, I get to chose.

It’s up to me.

And that’s some really good news.

Facing The Hard Stuff

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As I sit on my wooden patio, the warm morning sun shining down on my face, in my favorite patio chair working on a writing assignment as part of my step 12, I am consumed by the past.

Something I try daily to avoid thinking about, as much as I try to keep it away and pretend I have no past, it’s still there.

I go through periods where I am able to be present, where I know that today I am safe, I am okay.

Then it oozes in through the cracks.

Something someone says will remind me of what happened and I realize I am not over it yet. I think I have worked through a specific resentment or fear but it pops back up like that Whack A Mole game.

As much as I want complete freedom from being affected by my past, I cannot attain it by avoidance.

I must face these events, beliefs and fears, leaning into them so that I can rewrite the story I tell myself and gain clarity.

Though I know the freedom I gain from looking at these feelings and areas that cause me pain, there’s this part of me that feels like I will break in two if I allow myself to really feel the feelings attached to my past.

The reason why I sit here on my patio in the fresh air and morning sun today, though this work is not my idea of fun, writing about the things about my life that still affect me and facing my fears, is so I can read it to someone, gain an outside perspective and ask God to remove these things from me so I can be free today.

Again my goal is to be present today.

To enjoy the moments of this precious life and find peace is what I’m seeking.

I chase it the way I chased drugs and alcohol.

I’m seeking freedom.

To enjoy the moments of this precious life and find peace is what I’m seeking.

I’m seeking freedom.

Teaching Angels To Fly

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In the world of recovery, as with my job and with my personal life in the program, people often come and go into my life.

I take women under my wing.

I like to say that I teach angels how to fly.

I help them put on the training wheels and give them a little push.

Some touch my heart more than others.

Instead of focusing on the painful goodbyes, I focus on the beauty and light they shed in my life during the brief time I had them with me.

They each bring something unique with them and leave me with sacred memories.

One in particular is out there suffering right now and I cannot help her because the only help she needs can come from her connection with her creator.

A few days ago we were laughing and having fun being silly and then next thing I know she is lost to this disease and gone.

Every time I have the memory of the last time I saw her face flash before me in my mind, so broken and so lost, I pray for her and hope that someday she follows the light to guide her home.

I love you Liz.

It’s Not A Theory

Those of us that are sober, really sober, have an amazing internal truth detector.

When listening to people speak or share in meetings that are disingenuous we can tell.

When people speak truth we can tell.

There’s a big difference between knowing how to talk program and making people laugh, and living by spiritual principles.

A speaker in AA said recently “if you’re sitting in meetings and not working the steps, we can tell.”

It’s true.

Those of us who work the steps, who honestly look at ourselves and strive towards spiritual growth, shine like little flames.

You can see the light in people’s eyes.

There is no need for anyone to talk about it.

It’s clearly evident through the way we live it.

This spiritual way of life is not a theory.

The Truth Can Sting A Bit

Sometimes the truth stings.

Sometimes it can be a serious blow to the ego.

But like my sponsor has taught me, nothing bad can ever happen from the truth.

Nothing can ever be wrong with being really real and just putting it out there.

That is what I’ve started to do in a safe anonymous space which is my blog.

Most do not live in truth, they dance around it, cover it up, avoid it, deny it, anything other than to face it.

I am now compelled to live in nothing other than the truth.

Complete With Just Me

What I need to do is thank God for my life today and for the person I’ve become by allowing God to work through me instead of resisting what happens to be at this moment.

As I sat there today with my sponsor frustrated and confused my sponsor said to me, “Do you know how amazing you are?”

I just looked blankly at her because my ego tells me different even though my soul knows the truth.

Just then one of our clients came in and told her that she just wanted her to know how amazing I had been to her while my boss was gone out of the country and how good I had taken care of her. It was followed up by many of the girls I care for saying the same thing.

She said everyone knows it see?

The truth is that I have a beautiful life today full of people who think I’m just an angel, which is far different from what people had thought of me just over a year ago.

I can lay my head down at night and know my day has been in service to my creator and I’ve been the best person I can be.

I am free.