A Recovery Blog

This blog is about my continuing recovery from severe mental illness. I celebrate this recovery by continuing to write, by sharing my music and artwork and by exploring Buddhist ideas and concepts. I claim that the yin/yang symbol is representative of all of us because I have found that even in the midst of acute psychosis there is still sense, method and even a kind of balance. We are more resilient than we think. We can cross beyond the edge of the sane world and return to tell the tale. A deeper kind of balance takes hold when we get honest, when we reach out for help, when we tell our stories.

Thursday, December 31, 2015

New Years Eve

Midnight in about two hours.  I am quieting down from being borderline anxious.  Really just barely, but I felt some negativity.  The negativity came from me not knowing what I wanted to do.  Restless.  Next to the last night of smoking cigarettes for me.  Maybe that has something to do with it.  I’m avoiding cleaning and organizing the house.  It is still my choice and I choose to not do.  I don’t dislike myself for it, but I do feel a slight drop into depression when I walk by opportunities to change my pattern.

The primary compulsive pattern to stop is, for now, smoking cigarettes.  This is a deeply ingrained pattern in my life.  And that is why I pray - pray, to whatever Higher Powers are out there and in us, to help me stop.  I want now to be the right time to quit for good.  No more quitting and then picking up again.  Just let go and move on through the grace of God and by whatever effort I can commit to on a daily basis.  I forget that because I am no longer tormented and feel so much better than I used to that I am still not truly loving myself when I  breath tobacco into me.  I’ve heard people call the body a temple, but I don’t treat it that way.  I have respect for my body at the same time I hurt it.  I have turned off thinking for so long, thinking about what it is exactly that I am doing to myself when I smoke.

I’m just like any other self harming addict, living amidst amnesia and denial.  Only now there’s a dent in the denial.  I believe that the denial will begin to melt away after I destroy the final cigarette in the house and walk away from it.  Millions of people are walking away from their addictions right this second and I want to follow them.  They know where they’re going.  To someplace better.  But first - The Change - stopping the behavior and redirecting the attitude towards gratitude for having yet another chance to commit to health over sickness.  And after I stop, there will be discomfort.  The truth is that I feel discomfort now while smoking.  I cough horribly and clear my throat many times a day.  It’s not like I don’t have practice sitting with discomfort, only now it will lead to liberation instead of prison.

Yes, smoking, or any addiction, is about living inside a kind of prison, tied perpetually to compulsion and living not quite in reality.  I want to think that I’m mostly sane, but taking pleasure breathing in car exhaust is not sane.  And I do love myself and it is time that I show it to myself every day.
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