The Trouble with Recovery

Can I tell you what codependency recovery feels like for me?

I feel like a recovering alcoholic working with people drinking wine all day. I ABSORB everyone’s codependency and feel like an absolute crazy person.

I have been going to counseling for two years now. I have charted out all the abuse that I can remember happening in my formative years. I have processed how I felt then and how it makes me feel now. I’ve read all of it out loud to my counselor and discussed it. I’ve cried out all the tears I put away for too long. I’ve made the list of my character defects and processed them with God. I’ve made a list of people I have wronged due to my character defects. I’ve asked forgiveness to the ones I’ve hurt along the way. Now, I process how I feel and I raise awareness to others.

Yet, after going through the 12 steps in codependency recovery, I find myself still in the battle. It’s a daily. Battle. Today, I’m tired and I want to run to my car and hide there for a few hours… maybe a few days. You know, grab my dog, gather up my friends, and hit the road. Take a vacation with all the money I don’t have. Somebody drop me a line over here!

The chaos of everyone’s dysfunction is just hanging in the air like an electric field and I’m too tired to pray about it. To do the exercises to get me centered. I want to go the lazy route and just shove all the chaos deep down.

My codependent self wants me to not process today because I’m afraid. I am embarrassed by how I’ve responded to life and I want to be hard on myself. My toxic shame wants to take away the lessons that could be learned from scenarios I reacted to instead of responding in a healthy manner. Basically, I either want to distance myself from life and shove everything down or embrace everything in a self-deprecating manner. Ew.

But here’s the thing… I shouldn’t do that. Why? Because life is too good to live in misery.

Thanks to the work I’ve done, I am only a few steps away from peace. Before, I was carrying years’ worth of unprocessed emotion. Now, I have a much lighter load and I’m learning every day to give it to God.

Recovery is a process. There are times of bliss and times of lesson-learning. Both are valuable endeavors. So, press on in your recovery! I’ll be working today out with God despite my desires to hide in a hole.

Happy processing!

4 thoughts on “The Trouble with Recovery

  1. Hiya Meg – your post really struck me. Codependency is a tricky thing isn’t it?! The 12 step process and much of the literature clearly classifies it as an addiction. The trickiness I think comes in with the fact that for the codependent it isn’t an external substance we abstain from in recovery, instead we are holding back from a way of being in the world which is how we’ve always operated. Also because it is internal and intrinsic to ourselves, so damned hard to set aside! Tough work reprogramming our ingrained cognitive, affective and behavior reactions – no wonder there are days you want to hide!! High five to you for doing it anyways, and for sharing your journey 🙂 Maggie


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