Of course, I embraced friends with the same needs and we validated each other. Often, during times of recall and reflection, I/we would wonder out loud about our conditions; Alcohol, drugs, obsessive or eccentric behavior, pathological work ethics, unreasonable demands for perfection.
We had responsible positions, security clearances, some had family, various levels of education and financial security. Each week included some degree of mental or physical incapacity, due to our addictions, while we worked, drove vehicles or flew aircraft.
Late in my twenties, I gave myself to God with the incumbent life changes. B.U.T. the pain remained. WAIT! I thought All things were new?? Approximately, thirty more years before emotional healing would be complete, eradicating the pain but leaving the memories. I replaced alcohol with prayer, incessant Bible study, fasting, volunteering for every good event or activity.
Occasionally, walking my life's path, a thought or answer would shift my paradigm. Diverse events stretched, pressed and wrung me physically, spiritually and emotionally and though the need for my previous pain reliever did not return, the fear of it remained. Retirement brought an unexpected benefit in the form of TIME. FINALLY...Time to Stop and Think, Meditate, Contemplate. A poor decision left me financially restricted aiding the TIME element. History records various people making time to rest, be alone, to meditate in a desert, by a lake, in a forest.
Advice given to others resurfaced and gradually put to rest most of those troubling memories. With the demise of those memories went the ache and FEAR of returning to destructive habits. I:
- Enjoy a glass of wine.
- Forgot about the half bottle of Jack Daniels my wife used for cooking and stored in the pantry, two years ago.
- Accepted and enjoyed a Fantasy Drink of Rum, boarding our cruise ship, without thinking about it again the remaining week.
Connye and I began our New Lives as Husband and Wife, with previous histories, with the subsequent development incurred with any dramatic lifestyle alteration.
- Respect each other's rights and feelings -
- Permit mistakes, errors, misjudgments -
- Patient development -
- Love for each other confirmed frequently -
- Express Faith in each other -
I am 67 and finally FEEL like a reasonably healthy, mature-with-purpose, adult prepared to live and enjoy the rest of our lives. We have great siblings, wonderful children with precious grandchildren and a loving God caring for us.
What more could we want?? Nothing!