• Benjamin Gear

Self-Righteous Suffering pt. 1

Updated: Sep 20, 2020

Sooooo, I just had the worst month that I can recall. I was about to call it a roller coaster of emotion but it was all downhill, from bad to worse to worser. I couldn’t pray or meditate my way through, I couldn’t write my way out; I can honestly say I’ve never felt more disconnected from life, even when I was drinking. I spent the last month trying to figure out my situation all to come to realize trying was my problem. I’m gonna do my best to keep this one as short as possible, so let's just get to it.

The day after Father’s Day I made, yet another, attempt to locate my lost kids. If you don’t know about my kid sitch, I wrote a piece for another site last year called Honesty, you can check it out if you’re interested...or just nosey ;-). The short version is simply I was in a 5+ year relationship and shortly after it’s ending the girl up and left the country. With her she took a 10 year old daughter (that I didn’t know about or meet until she was 5), a stepchild I’d been raising, and a son, Benjamin Jr., who at the time was just 1 years old and my main man. After that, all fucks flew out the window and my drinking took a turn for the worst. So there’s that backstory, now back to your regularly scheduled blog.

The daughter we share is about 17 years old now and since I couldn’t find the mom at all, I got the wild hair to see if the daughter was on Instagram. She was!!! Having exhausted every resource and idea this was a major breakthrough and my heart soared. Her profile was blocked so I couldn’t see pics of the kids but in her profile pic, she looked just like my oldest daughter. When I sent the follow request, I then had the option to message her. I basically told her that I did not abandon her or her siblings and that I missed them all. I gave every single method of reaching me possible and told her I loved them and just wanted the opportunity to find and know them. Shortly after that, I was blocked.

This degree of bottomless hurt is how I felt when I initially learned they’d left the country, I just don’t have booze to cope now. I had to actually feel this shit. I shared the issue with a couple of close friends and got a new sponsor (mine had just moved), all of whom were as supportive as they could be but the aide provided was short lived in after effect. It wasn’t long before the kid thing had shifted into (semi)acceptance but every moment of everyday was still growing increasingly shittier. My typical methods of ‘crisis management’ were not working and the spiraling began.

I don’t really know how to describe it other than it felt like the plug/stopper in the pool holding all of my joy had been pulled and I was stuck in that water tornado swirl thing headed down the drain. I tried to present happy because I believe (at times) this is what’s expected of me but the more I faked it, the faster my joy pool drained. It was physically tiring to present happy. I forced myself to be social but I wasn’t ever fully present. When I was home alone in my apartment I would have these crazy thoughts about suicide. I didn’t want to off myself at all but the thoughts kept swirling around. This was terrifying. I wondered if this was how seeds of later action started. Was I going crazy? My mind kept going to my being in depression but I wouldn’t honor that classification because there’s a lifetime stigma attached to it. I would simply categorize it as “just a funk I was in.”

I am terrible at asking for, receiving, and applying help. I am in a unique and very blessed position to where I get work with and try to help quite a few people. Because of this I somehow came to believe that very few people could ever help me. No one was spiritually connected enough, smart enough, recovered name it, I was in a league all my own and only God could part the skies and deliver my relief. How foolish am I?!

BUT, I was so miserable that I started staying after my 7am meeting to talk with other dudes. Sometimes for hours and not always about me or the “funk I was in.” I just needed connection. Low and behold, I started forming friendships. Meeting after meeting the topics were spot on for uncovering areas of myself and life that I was realizing I was NOT attending to. Topics like: Experience Being The Best Teacher, Natural Faith, Identifying Fear...And Letting Go Of It, Being an Instrument, Moving Toward Peace and Serenity, Giving Up Center Stage, Humility as (and is) a Gift, Pride, and Surrender and Self-Examination. Amidst these topics were lessons and realizations that kept challenging me to identify who and how I was and how it was affecting my connection to connection to God. Real talk, AA is kinda the shit.

Feeling so disconnected, beaten, and defeated I finally threw in the towel. I’d reached the point where I’d given up on manufacturing joy and just allowed the day be what it was gonna be, while trying not to worsen it. July 19th, one month and one day after the start of this whole thing my breakthrough came....

Sorry to stop here but keeping with the shorter blog lengths, I’m gonna table this and talk breakthrough on the next post. Self-righteous Suffering and Spiritual Arrogance...who knew?!

Thanks for reading.


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