Monday, October 24, 2011

Dad's an Alcoholic

And mom bakes apple pies.

I spent too much time with my kids this weekend.  I am exhausted and glad to be going back to work.  I wish I could stay home and lay about in bed, but that would not be very good for me.

Did I ever tell you guys that my ex-husband is an alcoholic?  Oh, I guess I have been so busy keeping my own side of the street clean, I failed to mention a fact that is so corrosive and evil in my family.  Besides, we are not supposed to proclaim anyone as an alcoholic.  But I can tell you that I drank side by side with him for over 10 years and we drank the same way.  He got sober right after I did, and he called himself an alcoholic for about 90 days while he came to meetings.  Then he left meetings and stayed sober for another 3 years.  And for the last 24 years, he has been drinking.  And he looks like it too.

I am sick to death of what his alcoholism has done to my kids.

And that's the truth.

I only threw in the "mom bakes apple pies" because that's what I had a photo of this morning.  Yesterday I baked an apple pie and cooked all day.  We had a dinner and it tasted good.  I was so happy to have all my children and grandchildren in one room I took lots of photos.  My sober daughter is frowning in all of them.  If I were her, I would have been crying.  But she is much stronger than I am.

I learned something in Alanon that has served me well over the years.  I can't find it in the literature right now because I haven't kept up with Alanon and don't remember where it is.  I think it was in ODAT in Alanon.  A woman's husband had just died and she was beside herself, as you can imagine.  She called her sponsor (I think) and her sponsor asked her what she would be doing if this were an ordinary day.  She said she would be washing dishes.  So, her sponsor told her to wash the dishes.

Today I will wash the dishes, metaphorically speaking.

I will go to work and give it my very best.  I have already done my morning prayer and meditation and I know that God is with me today and every day.  I will put a smile on my face and try my best to mean it.  I will stay sober and give life my very best shot.  By noon, I am sure I will feel fine.  But I have found it is better to let my actions direct my feelings rather than wait to "feel" like taking action.
"To suppose that our emotions in any way give us reliable evidence of the nature or quality of our life with God is to misinterpret them."  -- Answering God, Eugene H. Peterson, p. 87.


Anonymous said... with that bit of information, it all makes more sense. Dad avoids you (not out of resentment, as he insinuates) but because you are one big old mirror and he doesn't like what he sees.

::sigh:: makes the situation even more intractable.

Anonymous said...

I think thenoiseandhaste hit it on the nose.

And the bit about the washing dishes is exactly what I needed to hear. Exactly.

dAAve said...

Monday, Monday .....

Lou said...

I had forgotten this. When I was nearly out of hope, I found comfort in everyday rituals.

Annette said...

Cleaning always helps me feel better. I do agree wit thenoiseandhaste also. :o(

Anonymous said...

Hi Mary, Just stopping by and catching up. Thanks for writing your blog every day.

Syd said...

I like what Al-Anon says: When I got busy, I got better. Sometimes, just doing the busy work helps to keep me moving forward and not getting mired down in self-pity or resentment. Glad that you bake the pies. Comfort food and comforting.

Pammie said...

I hear you, even over the smell of fresh baked apple pie.

Mary LA said...

That apple pie looks scrumptious.

Active alcoholics leave a trail of chaos and misery, destroy lives and damage their children, drive everyone around them crazy. That's the nature of the family illness.

I hope he gets to sober up and make some amends before it is too late.

Christy said...

Newly sober (6 months) and new to your blog... Couldn't help but comment and ask if you've ever head Patty Griffin's song "Making Pies". I thought of it as I read your piece. "You could cry or die or just make pies all day; I'm making pies." It's worth looking up on Youtube.
Thanks for sharing- I'm glad I found you!

Mary Christine said...

Thanks Christy. That's an awesome song, and I never heard of it before.