Tuesday, April 2, 2013
Moonlight on my path...
I love a big, bright, luminescent full moon. And sometimes, just sometimes when I stare at it for too long, I can feel a bit of loony-ness come out in me. I laugh a little louder; sigh a little deeper; talk a little longer; create a little wilder; and believe a little stronger. I like the full moon because it gives me license to do all those things. That is – as if I needed a license – NOT!
Recently we had a full moon. I think there is an after-affect. Maybe a kind of glow that lingers after the moon sets and the sun rises. Maybe there is a kind of “full moon craziness glow” that lasts for days after the full moon. That would explain a lot about both mine and other people’s actions.
I had an awesome Easter Sunday with my family. I laughed so hard my sides ached; I talked until my throat was sore; and ate more than healthy amounts of every tasty food served. Then I went home (really just downstairs) and crashed into bed at an extremely early hour. I don’t know if my excesses were a result of the full moon and I don’t care. What a wonderful day!
Riley chose a different sort of day. He stayed in his room and watched NCIS re-runs and played with a visiting dog. Gander is a golden retriever who is too old to just run around in the backyard with the other visiting pups. He is quiet and gentle. Both Riley and Gander enjoyed each other’s company. It was a good way to spend the day for both of them.
Riley and I were presented with several paths through our day and we each chose a different one. Neither path was wrong, crazy, good or bad. It was just a route of our choice. It was what worked best of each of us.
It’s my experience that life is a little like that. There are lots of paths we could take and we make our choices based on information available at the time. Sometimes we take a path that is well worn by others who went before us. Sometimes we pull out our machete and carve a whole new path just for that segment of our life. No path is right or wrong. Sometimes there are detours. Sometimes a bridge may be washed out and we must go back and start again.
The interesting thing about these paths is that they really don’t lead anywhere. They are just routes that provide scenery, opportunity, joy, sorrow as we go through our life. There’s an old saying that goes like this: Life is not a destination. Life is a journey. If that’s true then what is important is not where the path leads, but what is found along the way.
Riley’s path is different from mine. He prefers certain things that I would avoid at all costs. It’s his path and his choice to follow it. It’s not my place to carve the path for him. However, if his path puts him into quicksand, I can chose to reach out the branch that pulls him out so he may continue in whichever direction he wants. Or I can choose to just do nothing.
My path is one that has ugly, dangerous thistle bushes mixed in with the beautiful gardenias and camellias. I know they all have a purpose and I appreciate their beauty even in the ugliness. I encounter many different people and they are each on their own path. If our paths cross, we may converse for a while, share a cup of coffee, exchange ideas or we may simply ignore each other. Sometimes people join me as a walk down my path. It’s their choice to walk beside me or to go their own way. I may offer my opinion on how dangerous it may be to walk through an alligator infested swamp, but if that’s the path the person chooses, well, so be it.
While walking down this path as Riley’s caretaker, I stop and try to gain every bit of information I can so that I can make informed choices about my direction. I talk to him. I talk to other addicted persons. I talk to other caretakers. I talk to my family and friends. I get their points of view, but at the same time, I remember that their points of view are just “their points of view” and don’t have to be my point of view.
Riley makes his desires very clear to me about the path he wants to take. He wants to not be sober. That doesn’t mean he wants to be drunk. But he doesn’t like sobriety. This path he is on at the present time is not a path he would have chosen willingly. It was the only route available. It’s like having to get over a mountain when all but one road is washed out. Sobriety is Riley’s mountain and he just wants the fastest way out of it. It would not be my choice. But, it’s not my path… its Riley’s.
In my opinion, Riley’s quality of life is pretty good right now. I don’t know why he would want to change that. But the fact remains that he does want to change it. He wants off this path and change the quality of his life because for him this life doesn’t have the quality he wants. For him, if this is the only life-quality he will ever have available to him, he would rather get off the life path altogether.
It is hard for a non-alcoholic person to understand why anyone would want to live in a hazy, crazy world of inebriation. As I sip on my occasional (once or twice a year) glass of wine while having dinner with a friend, I am careful not to enter that place of having one-too-many. I hate the feeling of being personally out of control and so I avoid it as often as possible.
Riley is the opposite. He loves that feeling of euphoric floating through any event. He doesn’t care what the consequences are; he only knows that the feeling is what he covets. It is the path he will choose at every opportunity. If he can’t take that path, he will take the path to his room that ends in his rocking chair in front of the TV. He’s not really comfortable there, but he is as comfortable as he can be sobriety.
My point to my readers is this: You don’t have to walk my path. You don’t have to agree with the path of my choice. You are entitled to walk your own path. You are welcome to express your opinion about the path I chose. However, no one is asking you to read about my journey. If it upsets you or is incites personal anger, maybe you should read a different blog. If my point of view is offensive, why bother to read it at all? I’m sure there are other blogs out there that would intersect in a more agreeable manner along your path.
No matter what path you choose, my path will continue even if it is lighted by the full moon craziness glow.
at 8:09 AM