I have come to the conclusion that all I can do regarding certain things is present facts and then try and let it go. People will hear what they want to hear, read into posts and blogs what they WANT to read into them and most of us cannot see the forest for the trees.
So today I plug away at my job, at my little screenplay and at my blog. I remember my commitment to prayer and to patience. I try to reconcile myself with the idea that none of this stuff can I do well on my own, no matter how 'strong' other people think I am and no matter how long I have been doing the deal. The fact of the matter is, of myself and by myself I am not only a commode hugging drunk I am also a swearing, ranting, hate filled woman with little regard for the rights or responsibilities of being an adult.
Years ago, when I had been sober for awhile, the pain of being me became so great I had to dig deeper. I could not handle the fact that I was unable, at any time, to present my views or my ideas without going for the jugular vein of my 'opponent'...and anyone who DARED to disagree with me, or to suggest my reasoning was faulty or my logic a bit off was an enemy to be vanquished. I was not capable of seeing them as someone presenting their own experience, strength and hope and forget trying to walk a mile in their shoes. Being angry was my defense, my armor, my vehicle for travelling the byways of life and there was no way I was going to give that up.
Eventually, even those people who loved me avoided me. People would admire me for some stuff (staying sober, helping other drunks, doing service, raising kids that I had not given birth to) but generally they saw me as an angry, sarcastic, nasty woman who deserved to spend her time alone and was only to be called upon when work was to be done. There were very few people who really liked being around me. The ones who did are still hanging with me now and when I ask them to tell me what it was that kept them close? Usually it was because they didn't have any other friends themselves so they might as well hang on to the one they did have - even if she was not always the most pleasant woman to know.
Health issues started to bring me to my knees. When I went in for a sonogram and was told there were four tumors filling my uterus with poison, my first thoughts went to the four babies I had killed for my own convenience....and so the health issues segued into the spiritual issues (the tumors had, of course, nothing to do with the abortions) because it dawned on my that my mind went right to something I would have told you I did not consider a problem. I had, after all, exercised my 'right' as a fully liberated, American woman of the 80's and how DARE anyone even suggest that maybe, just maybe, the pain I felt about being me was wrapped up in the pain I felt about who I had been.
And what I had done.
Today I am so far from perfect I cannot begin to tell you how much it bothers me. I hate losing my temper. I hate it when I get sarcastic. I try so hard to NOT be that type of person, to be a woman of grace and dignity rather than one of anger and resentment. Usually, I hope, I can do it....the difference, I think, today is that when I cannot I try to excuse myself from the room or the people I am in danger of hurting with my sharp tongue and rapier wit...."gifts" I still posses that I take some comfort in knowing also belonged to St Jerome and St Theresa of Avila - not that I am anything like them, other than being Catholic and human.
I know, though, that I have the Sacraments to help me. The Sacrament of Reconciliation (someone recently referred to with disdain - 'confess your sins in a box' is the phrase I think they used) helps me the most. The Sanctifying Grace I receive from confessing my sins and receiving absolution from anointed hands helps me to come to work and not immediately attack someone I think is an idiot with my big mouth. The Sanctifying Grace I receive from eating the Body of Christ at Mass allows me to face the music of my mistakes at work and home without looking for someone else to blame or running away.
It also helps me to be able to say, "I need help" when I need it, "I need prayers" when I need them and "I need to know I matter" when I feel like I don't.
Everyone has moments of failure. I cannot condemn someone who is still angry at me over something I wrote 2 years ago and so goes after Catholics in general. I can demand she remember that I apologized and that she really mistook what I had said as a personal attack but what good would it do? Until she and others like her are able to overcome their own personal Calvary, nothing I say will be right. It will be something to argue with, rather than just listen to or think about - and ultimately, I am not important enough to listen to or think about so who really cares?
The screenplay is coming along even though I am at a very difficult part and I am not great using the software yet so my formatting is way off...but I am getting better and better and I am going to take the time this week to re-read the users guide AND the samples Susan lent me so I can make it look purty....as in properly formatted.