Yesterday marked a week since my old friend passed away. In that seven days, I experienced a myriad of emotions that left me exhausted and extremely sad. The first thing I felt was guilt/regret. Guilt that I never reached out to mend those fences, regret that I would never get a chance to do so in this lifetime, face to face, physically. I let the guilt and regret consume me for several days, including the day of her funeral in Indy. I felt devastated that I would not get the chance to tell her to her face that I love her, forgive her, and hoped she felt the same. Fear of rejection is a horrific thing to feel and we really need to learn to work through all of that.
I’ve been in recovery for more than a decade and while I’ve struggled every now and then, one thing I’ve always done is work the steps. I live by those steps in all things I do. And I forgot Step 9. I forgot to work Step 9 and I feel guilt over that. However, forgiving myself is something I must do; otherwise I will be miserable and it will eat me up for years to come. Step 9 says “Made amends to such people wherever possible, except when to do so would injure them or others.” Whether that amend is positively received or not, the amend must be made to give myself inner peace and forgiveness.
I get this daily email with a reading in it, about recovery and my disease. It gives me guidance and ideas on how to deal with whatever it is I’m feeling. Yesterday’s seemed to be fitting since it had been a week since she passed:
June 16 Reflection for the DayThe Ninth Step of the Gamblers Anonymous Program is: “Made direct amends to such people wherever possible, except when to do so would injure them or others.”To make restitution for the wrongs we’ve done can be extremely difficult,to say the least;if nothing else,it deflates our egos and batters our pride.Yet that in itself is a reward, and such restitution can bring still greater rewards. When we go to a person and say we’re sorry,the reaction is almost invariably positive. Courage is required,to be sure,but the results more than justify the action.
Have I done my best to make all the restitution possible?
Today I PrayMay I count on my Higher Power to stop me if I start to crawl out from under my Ninth Step responsibility.May I feel that blessed,liberating wash of relief that goes with saying,out loud,to someone I have harmed,”I was wrong.I made mistakes.I am honestly sorry.”May I not worry about cracking that brittle,cover-up crust of my ego,because the inside will be ?more mature.Today I Will RememberRestitution is blessed.