A lot of people think that balance is just an illusion. That our lives are so busy and overwhelming these days that achieving any semblance of balance is an unattainable goal.
I would like to openly disagree with that. I look at my life and my recovery as one in the same. Without my recovery I would not have a life. So to me, recovery is a lifestyle and that lifestyle requires balance.
I imagine balance as if it were a walk on a tightrope. You are walking the line (can you hear Johnny Cash singing it? ).
Sometimes you lean too far to one side in a situation (i.e. getting angry, allowing people to cross your boundaries, lying), but you recognize the need to get your balance back and you do that by correcting the behavior (healthy boundaries, amends, rigorous honesty).
The ability to recognize the desire to correct the imbalance is due to being substance free. You are thinking clearly and you can feel when things are getting out of balance.
You know that if you keep leaning too far in one direction that you could fall. You have fallen before and you remember all too well how that felt. You don’t want to fall again. So you make a strong effort to regain your balance.
I also believe that we each have an invisible safety harness. For some, that harness is their Higher Power.
But the safety harness can be whatever you use as your sober support system. Your family, your community, your sponsor. We all must have a safety harness in place. We cannot do this recovery thing alone.
If that were the case, we would have quit substances by sheer willpower and recovery would be non existent.
That safety harness has our backs when we feel like we can’t take another step and we need to hang for a little bit just to get our bearings. That strong support is a safety requirement for all of us.
Walking the line through life may sound like a difficult task, but I find it to be just enough of a challenge to keep me on my toes. That fine balance between accepting life on life’s terms, but not accepting mistreatment. Being of service without being taken advantage of. Taking action in our lives without trying to control the outcome of situations.
Some days we feel like we are zipping along on our line, and other days we take cautious baby steps. The important thing is that we keep going. Living life in sober recovery is a beautiful gift. So walk that line with joy in your heart and take confident steps.