The Divine Truth on Guilt and Triggers

chuvsto-viny

Love the world and yourself in it, move through it as though it offers no resistance, as though the world is your natural element. –Audrey Niffenegger

Trigger happy, gun shy, and a horse named Trigger. I always thought my triggers for addiction were shame, boredom, sadness, and a host of others that aren’t coming to mind as I write this post. Turns out my trigger, my worst damn enemy, was plain old guilt. For my past, present and future. I keep trying to squash it, with humor, food and booze. I keep failing, miserably.  Then, everything turns around. I try to control it with healthy eating habits, exercise and abstaining from alcohol. Fuck not being humorous. Being a sarcastic shithead is my forte!

The truth didn’t come easily. Lessons freshly learned, no matter how important they are, will piss us right the hell off. As the dust settles in our hearts, we become comfortable with the truth. That lie you’ve been telling yourself, will become your saving grace. My moment came, in a confrontational argument with my Adam Boy.

Mom, sometimes I think you wish you didn’t have me.

Son, that is not true. You and your sister are the best things I ever created. Better than any story I could write. Any food over-eaten or drunken bender I’ve been on.  You are of my heart. My soul. I would die for you.

I gave my children the strength to speak out. I never wanted them to be afraid of the repercussions. To feel guilt or shame. I wanted them to know that I loved them even when they were confronting me about my shortcomings. Call me on my shit for the love of God, so I’ll stop being a dick!!!! My son did that. Dear God, I know he’s going to be a great lawyer some day!

Roger Darling left Adam and me outside so we could argue. I kept looking at the back door, feeling, guilty. Guilty because I was talking to my son and not hanging out with him. Guilty because I hadn’t finished the upload of Meggie’s wedding photos on my flickr account. Guilty because I hadn’t scrubbed the bathtub for two weeks. Guilty for not doing the fucking dishes after dinner. Guilty because I don’t act like a typical grown up.

Guilty, guilty, guilty. Blah, blah, fucking blah!

I believe in the Divine. That there are powers bigger than ourselves at play. We have epiphanies and revelations. Moments of clarity, that speak volumes without one word being exchanged. Sometimes they come to us in an argument with another. A blog post written by a dear friend. The tears of a loved one. Or a simple email from a co-worker. These divine moments happened to me, in a span of 24 hours. I can tell you, I have not felt this much peace-in years. Words are finally flying around my head and there is a smile upon my silly face.

Today, is a good day. Tomorrow, I pray is even better. If it isn’t, that’s okay. I can’t let guilt be my trigger. To over-eat, drink to excess, not write or reach out for help. Realizations, be they divine or otherwise are valuable teachers. We must heed the lessons they bring us. If we don’t we’ll never truly live.

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Red Lights on a Rainy Night

MacKenzie is trying hard to keep herself together as she drives home down a familiar back road. Her hands are white knuckled as she grips her steering wheel. It’s windy, unusually dark and raining. Normally it exhilarates her. Makes her senses come alive, but tonight all she feels is fear. Her heart is racing as she drives down the familiar road. It is slick with rain and the wind is blowing the autumn leaves across it. It makes driving hazardous and difficult to see the center line. Up ahead she sees red flashing lights of the emergency railroad signals.  The signals are flashing their crimson warning as the arms descend and come to rest. She presses the brake and stops in front of the signal. The lights from it become smeared as the wipers swipe her windshield.

She screams, “fuck this shit!”, as she slams her hands on the steering wheel.

“Why can’t I stop this endless spiral of fear, shame, anxiety and pain?”, she exclaims to herself.

She is so damn angry. The red emergency signals are flashing, and the arms are still lowered. It’s not raining anymore, though the wind is high. And the autumn leave are flying everywhere. She puts her car in park and cranks up the radio. She hears a familiar song. A new one by P!nk. It’s become her new favorite. MacKenzie opens her door and runs to the tracks. The train is still a good distance away.  But she can see the lights. Hear the warning of its horn. She steps in the middle of the tracks as the wind whips in her hair. She feels a few drops of rain on her cheeks and then her heart begins to slow. A train is coming at her and her anxiety begins to wain.

“Why is that God?”, she screams into the night.

“Why have you fucked me up like this? Why am I so fucking backwards?”, she cries as she throws her middle fingers into the air.

She hears the train as it come closer.  The engine, the wheels churning on the tracks, and the horn. The engineer keeps blaring the horn, but she doesn’t move. MacKenzie finally feels peace. With the wind in her hair, rain on her face, music blaring on the radio, and the red lights blinking all around her. The train is so close she can see the face of the engineer and his fear. He puts on the brakes, and sparks fly from beneath the wheels and their contact with the tracks. She doesn’t move. He honks his horn one last time.

She smiles, and sings “Blow me, one last kiss”.

Then just like that, it’s over. She’s gone. She has peace.