When I look at Cliff today it's hard to believe where we've been. Some of the pictures are fading in my minds eye of his appearance, demeanor and pattern of days gone by. I must admit that I like it that way. I don't want to be haunted by his past or mine, for that matter. I don't like recalling the choices I made that in my ignorance seemed right at the time.
What was wrong with my thinking? It worked for my parents, or so it seemed.
Why couldn't I demand this behavior out of him as respect to me? How come he didn't have the will power to just stop this addiction that pushed him and me all over the place like a schoolyard bully? Why didn't I simply recognize how much the enemy, who masterminded this part of our life, drove a wedge into our relationship with the front runner being heroin. The harder I pushed back the deeper the wedge divided this family, causing all kinds of splinters and cracks in the foundation of our lives.
The reminder of my past is the chaos that still tries to take me hostage. I lived in a whirlwind of emotions for so long I'm finally learning how to step out of it without holding my breath. Just as an addict or alcoholic will step cautiously into their new choices, I am just as cautious. I've often felt as though this tormentor of addiction watched with great delight every time the rug was pulled out from under me. Time and again, it seemed that I would be merrily skipping along the path of life and out from the underbrush someone would grab me by my ankles and whirl me around and around, setting me free to soar through the air and land in a wounded heap. I was anyone's toy for such a long time because I felt capable, able and needed.
Thank God for a program that has allowed me to learn to be still. To not react to every itch, or respond to every word spoken. This program has given me the freedom to walk in my faith better than ever before.
I'm breathing more freely these days and I am so, so grateful.