Practice Perspective

The trial was difficult. I had known it would be. The result was the worst thing that could have happened, and as far as I could tell, nothing I had done had affected the outcome in any way. And I had worked so hard! Suddenly I was furious. At whom? At the one juror who had been unwilling to look at me during my closing argument…who had somehow become the foreman and was thus clearly to blame for the unfortunate result. And the tirade launched loudly in my head.

Yes, brothers and sisters, sometimes I still suffer from emotional over-reactions that disturb my serenity, even after years of sobriety.  Sometimes, my unreasonable needs for control, approval, and esteem, and my unwillingness to accept the unruly facts of life… sometimes those things can run me slap off the road into an emotional sobriety ditch.  And worse yet, there is a part of me that still wants to stay there! After all, you can’t fall out of a ditch. Climbing out of the ditch requires that I surrender my desire for control and accept life on life’s terms, however much I may disagree. It also means I probably need to regain perspective, which usually only happens when I ask for and accept help from others.

Thank goodness not everyone thinks like me.  And thank goodness I have learned to let others like me pull me out of the metaphorical ditch when they offer to do so.  I used to send them on down the road, with my surly assurance that I could get out on my own ringing in their bemused ears.

These days, when the universe sends me help, I am more often willing to take it. Sure, I am still the problem, but I no longer have such a huge need to be the solution. And that’s progress.

If you are interested in contributing your own story to the Sidebar, click here. The Sidebar is supported by the stories of our readers, and we appreciate your contributions.