Saturday, February 1, 2014

The Roller Coaster of Recovery

Saturday, February 1, 2014

Yay, I have made it to February in one of the coldest winters in recent memory!  Praise the power of Vitamin D!  Praise the power of phototherapy boxes.  And praise the power of steely determination to recover!

Yesterday evening I went to a fundraiser at the Gay 90s bar in downtown Minneapolis.  It was thrown to raise money for the Aliveness Project.  The Aliveness Project does great work in support of the local community of people who are HIV positive.  I myself have benefited tremendously from the organization's generosity as I continue to walk the road of recovery; my friend Keith has invited me as his guest on innumerable occasions to share a meal with him there.  Having the task of healthy eating managed in this way has made it so much easier for me to focus on the many other aspects of my life these last several months.

Last night was both fun and difficult.  I have these moments and I expect I will continue to have them for some time to come.  The event featured a number of guys who did a little number on a small stage to raise money from the audience.  One of the guys is someone I have seen around the community but not really talked with...yet.  His is the type of beauty that can stop a person in his tracks.  He is that gorgeous.

When I see men of such beauty two very different things happen inside me.  I feel immense admiration and often some attraction.  And I also feel some grief and pain.  There is a saying that "beauty is in the eye of the beholder'.  I've also heard it said it is also in the mind of the beheld.  To be able to acknowledge and appreciate such beauty outside of oneself is to somehow have that beauty inside yourself as well.  I believe this is true.  I know I am an attractive man.  My grief wells up within me when I realize that I didn't always appreciate this about myself.  And so then I find myself again feeling the burdensome feeling of feeling that I missed out...that I didn't know just how beautiful I am and how much I have to offer.  It's that experience of lost time I wrote about recently in my blog.

I cannot keep grieving the past.  I wish to live in the present moment and aim to create a better future life.  And I am doing that.  But just because I am acknowledging and working through the ways the past impacted me does not mean it is an easy process.  It's rarely been easy.  I wonder if there are not better ways to cope when I have these moments of sheer joy and sheer grief intermingling with one another.  And I find myself asking yet again 'When does this pain end?  When will feeling normal not feel so strange?' Sitting in the depth of my feelings and simply analyzing them endlessly is not a healthy strategy...and I do not feel I am doing that excessively.  But there have to be better ways to cope.  I am going to speak with my therapist about this on Monday.

I'll be heading out fairly soon to do another workout at the YMCA.  Physical activity always relieves my stress.  Boxing is proving immensely therapeutic for me.  I will be writing another post later today in honor of this special time of year known as Imbolc.


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I invite you to accompany me as I document my own journey of healing. My blog is designed to offer inspiration and solace to others. If you find it of value I welcome you to share it with others. Aloha!