Al-Anon Lifer

Anonymous sharings from a long-time member of Al-Anon, which is a safe place to recover from the effects of alcoholism in a friend or relative...

Thursday, September 28, 2006

A Decisive Day...

I woke up feeling fine yesterday. The sky was blue. The leaves golden against it. But then I remembered the girl who died in a school shooting on Wednesday. "Time to move on," I said to myself. "Kids die every day. You need to live." I sat down with my coffee and daily readers. A note slipped out of my "Hope for Today." It was the email I'd printed from my sponsor a while back.

Then I remembered the phone call I'd gotten from work the night before. The new manager told me not to come in the next day because they weren't busy enough. I had said it was my only shift this week. It didn't matter. "Was this a sign?" I asked myself. I had been thinking about leaving for greener pastures for a while and had asked my sponsor for advice.

"Of course, we don't give advice in Al-Anon," she said in the email I now held in my hand, "but why are you staying? Is it because of other jobs you've had? Are you being treated fairly?" I silently answered her yesterday morning with NO. Then I had lunch with a friend who dittoed my answer. I left feeling down, burdened. I probably knew what I had to do, but I was tired, emotionally exhausted from this week's personal and public events.

Nevertheless, I stopped by work to pick up next month's schedule and they seemed plenty busy. Plus the new schedule limited my shifts again. "They want me out of here," I thought. "So I'll go, peacefully, if that is even possible." It was. I didn't give them notice, though. Some employers don't deserve it. I used to be a good employee - you know, the kind who works her bum off and doesn't ever complain.

But that was before I stopped taking this kind of crap from people. I have my own part-time business at home and finally fired a client last year after years of her abuse. A few months before that, I began the process of leaving my husband. His drinking and driving was going to jeopardize my future. I just couldn't handle being tied to the legal and financial ramifications should he get arrested or worse, kill someone. He got sober in AA, though, so I stayed. But since then, I quit two part-time jobs, besides this last one. Both for about the same reason - I was not being treated fairly.

So here I am again, feeling like a failure, when really I am just taking care of myself. Both my spouse and my children think I should either just work for myself or work for a real company, one with rules and most importantly, money. Don't work for people who keep complaining that they don't have enough money to pay the bills so shortchange you. Don't work for people who make promises they can't keep. Don't work for people who treat you the same way your parents did and still do.

No wonder I'm hurting. It isn't the job that seems to have rejected me, it's "the parent I hardly knew" knew who didn't even want to share a meal with me, and the other parent, my mother, who has emotionally abandoned me since I was a child, when she was emotionally abandoned by my father. I'm seeing her this weekend, and it is always hard to detach with love from someone who has admitted she doesn't love me as much as she loves my baby sister, the product of her second marriage. How awful to tell your child that. I would never do that.

But then I am in recovery. I have the gifts and tools of Al-Anon, one of which I better use today. I should go to a meeting or call my sponsor and maybe one more friend. I have plenty of time to get ready for my weekend trip. For one thing, I have two extra days next week to take care of all the stuff on my desk now that I quit my outside job. I should feel free. I should feel happy. Especially since I don't have to see "the parent I hardly knew." But I'm not feeling that way. I'm feeling rejected and unloved.

They are the feelings I didn't have as a child when my father left. I'm hurt. My brain says, "It's for the best. Now you can have fun. Now you can explore other things. You can really enjoy October, one of your favorite months. September went by in a blur. And you are loved. Your husband loves you, and is sober. Your children love you and speak to you (something that would not be the case had you not got help through therapy and Al-Anon). And you have loving friends and a sponsor in Al-Anon. Plus you have a loving mother-in-law, sisters you can hang out with this weekend, a 101-year-old grandma who tells you you're her favorite, and your whole life ahead of you."

Now if I can just transfer those thoughts to my heart, which feels like it is breaking. I want to roll into a ball in a corner and disappear. Instead, I know I'll take care of the little business I need to today, pack for this weekend, and make contact with a healthy person or two. Plus I'll publish this blog because it may help someone else out there. Although it has helped me already. Thank you, God. Thank you.


At Friday, September 29, 2006 12:21:00 PM, Blogger Mama Dukes said...

It sure is a good thing that we get to start our day over anytime we choose to---

And that 24 hours ends with the end of a day and I can begin a new day with a new attitude

hope you were able to enjoy your today

At Friday, September 29, 2006 12:40:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

You definitely helped me with this post today.
I hope you did reach out to some people and your sponsor yesterday and that you got some relief. Those "kid fears" are difficult and sad and painful.
Thanks for sharing.
P.S. I saw your post on kel's blog and that's how I found you. Thanks for reaching out to her.

At Friday, September 29, 2006 9:23:00 PM, Blogger Unknown said...

I left a job several years back that I just hated. I gave them two weeks for several reasons. One because I was taking another job and wanted to leave this one OK as the two jobs overlapped. Another reason was for me. I had left a job in the past on terms that were not ideal. I resigned in a fit of anger over the phone. Not good. I did not want to do that to MYSELF again. So for me sometimes doing the right thing my suck in the short term but in the long run it will sit better. In my soul that is.

Thanks for your share ~

At Sunday, October 01, 2006 2:54:00 PM, Blogger Anonymous said...

Thanks, everyone. My sponsor called me and was worried about me after reading this post. I am uncomfortable with what I did, and may be able to repair some of the "damage." However, I had already given my boss a two weeks notice before and she begged me to reconsider. Which I did, on a trial basis. The trial became too much of a trial. Or I just couldn't handle rejection by my father and the new manager all in one week. I am still learning how to handle my feelings. Thanks again.

At Monday, October 02, 2006 10:38:00 PM, Blogger ~MsManna~ said...

I too feel I need to make a change and don't know why I stay except that, I am loyal and remain in situations that do not benefit me too long! This current position is another one. I need to make a move. Thanks for sharing.


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