This article was written about three weeks before my last episode. It shows what I was going through in my mind and shows that although I was aware of the dangers of pursuing a relationship in early recovery, that my hearts desire to love and be loved by another was stronger than any warning I could have received. This will be a good introduction to my first article coming in the next 2 weeks that tells in detail what exactly caused all of this to happen. Be blessed my friends.
Why is that of the three long term relationships I have been in all three have ended in a severe amount of heartbreak? The first was the divorce of me and my high-school sweetheart. I loved her from the ages of 15-30, but we are now divorced due to me loving the effects of drugs and alcohol on my body, more than her love!
A sickening reminder of how lost I was in active addiction.
The two following relationships, one while in sobriety and one while not, both ended up in my love being betrayed due to infidelity and ended with my heart crushed and my world turned completely upside down. If karma truly is a bitch, then there were my paybacks!
That brings me to today and to this journey I embarked on several months ago to get clean and sober and find the true meaning of my life. To find out who I really am and whether or not there is actually a divine purpose for my life.
During the first couple of months on this journey, it was all I could do on the daily to simply get up out of bed, feed myself, shower and get my ass to a meeting then return home to eat again. If it was a good day, I might shower. A great day, throw in a much-needed shave and return my confused and exhausted self back to the bedroom to lay down for the night, hopefully, to be able to wake up and do it all over again the next day.
In my first couple of months of recovery, those aforementioned tasks took all of the energy that I could muster. I was simply fighting to just be able to exist without putting alcohol or drugs in my body one day at a time.
As time went on this got easier, I then was able to add a few hikes into my weekly recovery program. Such as the one to the land of self-discovery and the other a climbing trip up to the summit of Mt. Meaning and Purpose.
Once I mastered those two trails, though, I felt a desire deep within to try a much more technical hike. One where there really is no set trail at all merely just a destination point. A spot on the map, a place so hard to get to and technically challenging that a specific G.P.S. coordinates are not even listed for it.
One can go through the land of quiet and reserved shyness attacking the summit from the gradual slopes on the East. Or for the brave at heart, you can venture straight into the valley of my heart says I need this and attack the dangerous North Face of Mt. Love in Recovery head on!
The thing is, though, regardless of which route I had taken, the outcome was always the same; betrayal, heartache, and pain. Severe amounts of emotional pain that on more than one occasion caused me to crawl deep within myself for over a year one time, until I deemed it safe enough to come back out again.
When I crawled out of the cocoon I had created around my broken heart last time I came out in self-preservation mode! I came out with a built in fail safe switch to make sure that I never, ever, had to go through that intense amount of emotional pain again. The label above that switch on the control panel of my heart read no one will ever get that close to my heart again ever, I don’t care how they make me feel!
This for some years has been the only way that I know of to guarantee that I will never have that happen to me again. I also think subconsciously, it protects others from me in case we are in love sober and I relapse, so I can make sure I can’t break any hearts as well.
Here is my dilemma now, though. The pain of that last failed relationship has a distance of many years to it now. My recovery has blossomed and I have found out who I am as a man and what I believe God’s purpose is for me on this earth.
For several months knowing those things made me feel infinitely more whole as an individual than I ever have at any other point in my life, don’t get me wrong here either they still and always will be my completeness.
What I am noticing, just as of very recently, though, is that I have deep within the core of my being an insatiable desire to love and be loved on an intimate level. To have someone to share the beauty of my new life with and to partake in theirs. To have one partner, lover, confidant and most importantly, uniquely best friend!
On one hand, if I not right now, but in the near future decide to load up my backpack and make another summit attempt of Mt. Love in Recovery I am fearful that at this age I may make a fatal technical error on a very difficult route, which ends up costing me this new life I have worked so hard to attain.
Quite possibly causing me to take a fatal missed step and fall off one of the exposed ridges high up there on the mountain, plummeting to my death never to be seen or heard from again. So that leaves me thinking only one thing;
Is pursuing the desires of my heart in recovery a gamble that I can afford to take. Even though I know if I am successful in that endeavor I will be totally complete on every level, is it worth the risk? Is risking all that I have worked so hard to attain worth the spin of the Roulette wheel of love?
Do I risk losing myself and my ability to help others through my past struggles with addiction over some seemingly selfish desire to love and be loved by the opposite sex? My heart tells me hell ya you want to, and my mind says we have worked way too hard, come way to far and people have invested way to much time into you, for you to take an unnecessary risk like that.
Especially when you already feel complete now than you ever have, quit being selfish Marc and disregard that idea completely because God created you for this purpose and you cannot let anything distract you from the mission at hand!
Now my spirit chimes in and say’s that your God is LOVE, he created you for love. To love him and to be loved. To love others but most importantly love yourself, Marc. So this insatiable desire that you feel tugging at the strings of your heart from the very depth of your being is a natural thing and you should embrace it, not run from it like a coward. For we know one thing about you Marc, ” you are definitely not a coward.” The good book says;
“I did not give you a spirit of fear, but of love, power, and a sound mind.”
As a man in recovery who is feeling this and who’s mission in this life is to help others along their path to recovery. I cannot help but think other people out there probably feel the same way. So I searched around and I could not find much of anything from a guys point of view that addressed this issue. Many women have but guys are from a different planet, I think it was Mars that one book says.
So me being me and not scared to show all of me to the world in hopes that my transparency can assist another out of the darkness and into the light I chose to be very vulnerable and spill my heart on this one. But it simply leads me back full circle to where I was at the beginning of this article, asking myself the same thing,
TO LOVE OR NOT TO LOVE, THAT IS THE QUESTION?
Be blessed you all!!