The Race Is Over

Healing_Shame_Medium-845x565Owning our story can be hard but not nearly as difficult as spending our lives running from it.

- Brene Brown


I didn’t always like who I was or how I acted. I wanted to stop my drinking and drug use. It was not who I wanted to be but despite my best intentions I continued harming myself and those I loved. I tried to ignore the obsessive thoughts that drove my destructive behaviors but they were a persistent and overpowering siren song. I inevitably dashed myself on the rocks of another drunk. I justified my actions as being caused by circumstances. I made solemn oaths to change. I rationalized the harm I caused as doing the best I could in a difficult situation. I told myself that I had learned my lesson. With a firm resolve and an increased self knowledge from previous mistakes I was certain it wouldn’t happen again. It always did. Each failure to control my behaviors reinforced the core belief that I was somehow faulty, simply not as good as those around me. I ran from my story. I was a powerless and tragic character actor in my own story heading towards a predictable end everyone could see but myself.

For many the story ends there. For me, however, I was given a solution. It was a gift from a man who couldn’t keep it to himself for fear of losing it. He asked no more of me than to be honest, open minded and willing to help others as he had helped me. He showed me what he had done and how his life had changed. I made a decision. I wrote my story down and shared it with him and a Power much greater than both of us. I learned to trust in this Power and to ask for its help. I did my best to make right the harm I had done. Somewhere along this new path I opened the door of my shame and faced the darkness within. I owned my story and it lost its power. I have finally stopped running.

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