Where am I today in the connection process?
Do I feel connected? If so, with who? If not, why?
Honestly, I haven’t felt really connected with anyone for a few days I don’t think. I’ve tried to study and write, but at times I feel I’m studying and writing for others and not for me – especially with this group discussion.
It’s like I want to be seen as someone who’s really in recovery and doing super well. But am I?
I think I’m doing pretty good. But, based on how Becky’s feeling the last few days, I’m not sure. She’s pointed out behaviors in me that she doesn’t feel safe with. There’s a part of me that is wondering why she’s so fixated on MY behaviors, but then I understand that I have to let her feel what she feels – it have been my behaviors and actions in the past that have got us into the mess we’re in.
So I won’t worry too much about what she’s shared, other than take it all into account and ask myself where I’m at and what I’m feeling.
I’m feeling fear.
- Especially fearful about work and providing. Am I going to get the big U deal? If so, can I handle that? If not, what else do I have going that will help me hit the goals I’ve set and provide for our family?
- I feel fear as I think about writing a letter to my parents or addressing that entire issue. When? How? Why? Will doing so even make a difference? Is it worth the pain it’s going to cause myself and my parents? Will I regret doing it? These are questions that come to mind right now.
I’m feeling alone.
- I think this has to do some with work. I haven’t connected with people much lately. Yeah, I’ve talked to a few clients or potential clients on the phone, but haven’t really felt connected. I also feel sad that the relationship with Fifty has gone way down. There isn’t really anything going on there at all. It seems that Russ has taken back over the leads that come in and that they don’t need me anymore. After working with them for over 5 years, this hurts. It hurts most because there has never been discussion about it – the relationship has just sort of faded away. This makes me feel sad.
I’m feeling frustrated.
- I’m frustrated some because, to me, it seems like every time Becky goes to a therapy session on her own she comes back with all these feelings and fears and is analyzing everything I do for the worst. I feel like she has a radar up and is looking for ways I’m going back to my addictive behaviors. Maybe she’s right. But I ask myself the question, “What does ‘rowing my own boat’ mean in this situation?” To me, she’s trying to row my boat. She’s given me topics that she thinks I should be studying, both yesterday and today. She’s told me I need to confront my parents sooner than later. I know her intent is to help my see where I am and to help me continue to live in recovery, but I don’t like the way her pressure and agenda make me feel.
I’m feeling disconnected.
- I feel this way especially with Becky. From at least Monday, she’s been detached. It could have been before that too, I’m not sure. She seems to have her guard way up. We don’t really have great conversations and if we do, they have usually ended with her falling asleep. Do I have expectations? I don’t think I do, or I’m trying not to. I guess I wish we felt more connected emotionally and that we were on the same page.
- I also don’t feel super connected to God. Like I said earlier, my study lately has seemed to be more about sharing for others and not really connecting with God. I feel this changing as I write this stuff out, but that’s where I’ve been.
- How can I connect with God better? I can read from the scriptures. I can read from the conference talks and remember to think about how it applies to me. I can pray more earnestly. I can ask for His help in the moment. I can write more for ME and not for others. I can review my “weapons of war” and make sure I’m not digging them back up.
- As far as connection with Becky and with others, all I feel I can really do there is reach out and be present. If I’m living in recovery and feel connected to God, the other things will come or they won’t – but I don’t have to worry about them. The thing I have to make sure doesn’t happen is to feel resentful or angry or self-pity.
I’m feeling overwhelmed.
- I made a list the other night when I couldn’t sleep about all the things I need to be doing or I should be doing or I could be doing. It was two pages…I think this overwhelming feeling is tied to feeling alone and feeling disconnected. All I can do is take things a task at a time, a day at a time. I can’t look ahead. I can only focus on today, right now, the present moment.
I’m feeling prideful.
- This feeling seems to come as I’m writing for others to see where I am. I don’t want to compare my recovery to anyone else. I don’t want to feel like I have things figured out. I DON’T. I’m an addict and I always will be. I have to surrender my will and my pride to God and ask for His help in everything.
- I also feel pride coming in as I feel Becky is assessing where I am. I feel this is defensiveness in disguise. I appreciate her feedback and her perspective. I can hear it for what it is and do my best to help her feel safe. Ultimately, I have to turn it over to God.
I’m feeling unsure.
- These feelings are coming for a couple reasons: 1. Unsure about work and where I’m headed there. It seems there are lots of deals on the table, but all are pending right now. This makes me nervous. 2. Unsure about where I am with Becky and with recovery. From her perspective, things are not good. I don’t know. I recognize what she’s saying but haven’t felt the feelings that she seems to think I’m feeling. Yes, yesterday was not ok – I was browsing stock photography and justifying. This is a weapon of war. I recognize it and commit, today, to let go and let God.
I’m feeling isolated.
- This feeling is closely related to feeling alone. I don’t feel connected to God or Becky and that is a hard concept. I feel the only connection I have control of is my connection with God. I can do things about that and I will and am in this moment.
I’m feeling under-appreciated.
- This is all about pride. If I’m doing my best and trying to live in recovery, that’s all I can do. If others don’t appreciate my efforts, that’s not my boat to row. I can take it for what it is and move on.
I’m feeling like, no matter what I try to do, it’s not helping Becky feel safe.
- Similar to the answer above. It’s not my job to row Becky’s boat. I want to help her feel safe. I want to be here to talk with her. I want to be present. I want her to feel I’m living in recovery. Her feelings are her feelings. There could be many reasons why she feels like she does. If I’m doing my best, being aware of her needs, and trying to help, that’s all I can do and it’s enough.
I’m feeling confused.
- Are my addictive behaviors coming back? Am I fixated? Am I opening the door to addictive actions? I really don’t think I am. The answer I gave Becky last night, that caused her to think I’m fixating, was me trying to figure out what she wanted me to say about what I’d learned about myself (one of the assignments she gave to me as a topic of study). Honestly, I don’t even know how to answer that question. What I’m learning about myself in this moment is that I have lots of feelings and emotions that I’m afraid to talk with anyone about. Why is this? I feel it’s because I’ve never really trusted my parents to listen and try to understand. I feel it’s because I’ve never had anyone that I could just share with that I didn’t care what they thought to some degree. With Becky, she’s been the closest, but some feelings I have triggers feelings of fear in her that I don’t want to trigger so I’m afraid to talk about them as well.
- With my sponsor, I know he’s really busy so I’m not sure how I can really open up to him. Sometimes I fear that my talking doesn’t even make sense and that I talk too much.
- These are all components of my confusion today.
I’m feeling irritated.
- Not 100% sure why I’m feeling this way. Possibly because I am not sure how I can help Becky feel safe with me. Ultimately, the answer is what I’ve already written – I have to let go and let God. He’s in control. He knows what each of us needs. All I can do is surrender to Him and do His will today, in this moment.
I’m feeling justified.
- This feeling comes from the browsing. I don’t want to go there today. I want to live in recovery. Justification is an addictive behavior that I want to let go.
I’m feeling scared.
- This feeling is triggered by thinking ahead too much. All I can do is live today, in the moment. Just writing this stuff out has been so helpful for my feelings. The one question I have: do I share these with someone (my sponsor, my friends, Becky, Steven)? I don’t know.
The Connection Process
Why am I feeling these things? I’m going back up now to each feeling and going to write about it.
What can I find in the scriptures about these feelings?
Who, in the scriptures, has felt similar feelings and what did they do about it?
- Alma the Younger
- Nephi and Lehi
- The brother of Jared
What did Nephi do?
1 Nephi 2:16 …great desires to know of the amysteries of God, wherefore, I did cry unto the Lord; and behold he did bvisit me, and did csoften my heart that I did dbelieve all the words which had been spoken by my efather; wherefore, I did not frebel against him like unto my brothers.
18 …being agrieved because of the hardness of their hearts I cried unto the Lord for them.
19 And it came to pass that the Lord spake unto me, saying: Blessed art thou, Nephi, because of thy afaith, for thou hast sought me diligently, with lowliness of heart.
20 And inasmuch as ye shall keep my commandments, ye shall aprosper,
1 Nephi 3:1 And it came to pass that I, Nephi, returned from aspeaking with the Lord, to the tent of my father.
7 And it came to pass that I, Nephi, said unto my father: I awill go and do the things which the Lord hath commanded, for I know that the Lord giveth no bcommandments unto the children of men, save he shall cprepare a way for them that they may accomplish the thing which he commandeth them.
Ultimately, Nephi turned his feelings over to God through earnest prayer. This is the best way to connect with God – talk with Him!
I’m grateful for the writing today and for surrender.
I look forward to a day in recovery.
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