My Rock Family

8:16 PM Edit This 7 Comments »
I thought about going outside and pillaging rocks to draw on, but that's not it. Rocks are just a figment of my imagination when it comes to recovery.

I have created my own rock family here in Sioux Falls. When I got sober - or at least tried to get sober, I started collecting rocks. First, my recovery dad, Joe. He was the first one that I trusted enough to ask questions of. Where is this third step prayer? What does it mean to stay sober one day at a time? Where's this 7th step bullshit? And I have in my very first recovery book - his markings in red pen. Slowly, but surely - still drinking - he introduced me to my recovery mom. I didn't want to talk to the women in recovery. They know when you're lying. The men do, too. But they don't call you on it. It's the women that make you well. My recovery mom is the one that drove me to treatment in the middle of the night and the one that I trust with my life today. Three out of her five children are alcoholics. And when I got sober, none of them were. I was just the recipient of all her prayers for them.

My rock family. Joe - my recovery dad. Barb - my recovery mom. Tom, Bob. Miss M and Cowgirl. There's more, but these are my rocks. Gay Boyfriend is my friend and not a rock, in case you were wondering.

I went to the wake yesterday by myself, knowing that there would be people I would know there. But the panic inside me was more than I could bear. The same funeral home as the Dead Guy. I tried. I really tried. I had every intention of doing the deal for the family that is still here. But I walked in with a stomach ache, lost my breath standing in line to sign the guest book and totally avoided the body. I can't do dead bodies apparently. But I held only Mary Y's hand and did the best I could until I couldn't breathe. Breathing is a big deal, apparently. And Mary told me to go home and take care of myself. But my rocks? They were all there. So when I got home to the swing, there was no one to call. And I panicked even more. In recovery, I have learned to rely on phone calls and not physical presence. It used to have to be physical, then it evolved into phone calls, then it morphed into an understanding that if there was a person - just one person out there that understood what I was going through - I would be okay.

But this new thing. This facing death thing. Fuck. I had no idea that I would be thrown into regression. None whatsoever. And I feel like a failure. But I know I'm not. Every single person I've talked to has told me that remembering what it was like with the Dead Guy when someone I know dies is NORMAL. What the fuck is normal? I hate it.

But back to my rock family. You have to do some serious work to get into the fam. Tellin' ya. I don't hold much sacred, but I do hold my rock family sacred. Sure, they all have character defects. And they don't always act or say things that help, but they're always there. No matter the time of day. No matter if they're doing something super important, they drop it all.

And that means alot for a girl that thinks, most of the time, that she's not worth it. My rock family? They've proven to me time and again, I am worth every second that they spend with me. If I call, crying. If I call, laughing. If I show up at their door bereft. They have the time and the means. And I'm ALL THAT to other people today. I wouldn't have that for a minute if someone hadn't given it to me first.

So when I had the mother of all panic attacks at the funeral home last night, and all my rocks were there and couldn't leave to attend to me? I tried. I tried my best. I made a few phone calls, none of which arrived in time to help, but I did remember that no matter what, someone would call back when they could be there. I SO want to be that for someone someday. So much. And I will. But tonight, I'm sad that I couldn't hold it together. Someday I will. And I'm proud to know that.


*Akilah Sakai* said...

What's wonderful is you have more than one rock, more than one viewpoint, making for a very powerful support system.

What's beautiful is despite the sadness, you are proud to know that someday you will be able to "hold it together." Your positive outlook is paramount.

Summer said...

I wish I could hug you. I'm glad that you know that you'll get through this.

Rocks are very important. I love that comparison. I have one. Just one, and she's gotten me through a lot. She almost never says what I want her to say. Only what I need to hear.

BTW, if you need to hear how awesome I think you are, come by my blog and pick up an award.

Mr. Condescending said...

is south dakota nice? sounds depressing by your posts

Julia said...

What a great metaphor. I love my rocks and couldn't live without them. I'm glad to hear you have some that can help you through the tough times - even if it's only the thought of them that is available.

MilesPerHour said...

Experiencing moments like you had are providing you with the education and strength to be someone else's rock in the future. It's tough, I know. I go back to something I always say, "The worst things I ever had happen to me in my life have always turned out to be the best things that ever happened to me."

God has a plan for you and is preparing you for it.

carrster said...

I'm glad you have your rock family. I think it's only normal to feel what you're feeling (fucking 'normal,' hmph) and I think you're doing great. I wish that we were closer so you could lean on me when needed.

t2ed said...

When you said rock family, I was pretty sure this post was going to be about the Van Halen's.