View from the choir

I am a Catholic layperson and Secular Franciscan with a sense of humor. After years in the back pew watching, I have moved into the choir. It's nice to see faces instead of the backs of heads. But I still maintain God has a sense of humor - and that we are created in God's image.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Stinking thinking

I used to go to A.A. meetings.

Not because I am an alcoholic
though I have my addictions -
coffee
chocolate
books
thinking
this computer
sarcasm.

But because I was surrounded by alcoholics -
ancestors
loved ones
friends
coworkers
bosses
associates.

Heck, if not for alcoholism
I might not be here.

The Lord moves in mysterious ways.

I went to the meetings
because a lost soul
I loved
was convinced I was an alcoholic
and being a lost soul
in love with a lost soul
I wondered
and doubted
so I went.

I went to the non-smoking meetings
(not an addiction I had)
where they served coffee (aha).
People said the usual:
Name, addiction, story.
I knew some of them
from the news
and from life (avoiding eye contact).
I got to know them better
even as I avoided eye contact
comfortable in confidentiality
and familiarity
and routine.

The coffee helped.

This went on for a while.
So did group counseling.
Then I realized
and my counselors realized
and the group realized
this was not my issue
this was someone else's issue
and the fiction of me being an alcoholic
was one way to avoid
facing that issue
just as my accepting the idea that I might be an alcoholic
was a way to avoid my issues
including the one issue
I most wanted to avoid.

Revelation time.

The loved one quit the counseling
and me.

I finished the counseling.
There was a celebration.
Hugs all around.
And coffee.

It's been years.
My life now is filled with poetry
and not fiction.

I still drink coffee
still eat chocolate
still collect books
still think too much
still sit at this computer
still say and write sarcastic things

I am mostly comfortable.

But
sometimes
late at night
when it's easy
to think that what's not real is real
I wonder
if I had been an alcoholic
if things would have ended differently.

Stinking thinking.

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2 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

It was painful to watch "revelation time" from afar. I can barely imagine what it was like to live it. My prayers were always with you, my friend.

12:32 PM  
Blogger Lee Strong said...

Thank you. I'm sure the prayers were part of what kept me on track.

4:40 PM  

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