Sundance, a Super Bowl Party, and a Final Word About Adam


I’m home from the nineteenth and final Sundance screening of the year. I’m going to have to sit down with the film guide and process what all I’ve seen. I plan to reach out to the filmmakers of the things I’ve seen that I really liked. I’m excited to get back to NYC in nine days and get back to doing what I love. I’m also nervous about the move but I know that God’s got me.

I have to say that the most important thing that’s happened to me this year so far is getting plugged into this new (to me) area of the recovery community that’s focused on recovering from underearning. The things I’ve heard from people who have been at it for a while give me a lot of hope. There are a lot of people just like me, many with double-digit chemical sobriety who also found themselves facing all those same symptoms of that manifestation of the disease that makes us into underearners. Many of them are hard working (like me), talented (like me), interested in really making a positive difference on the planet (like I do), and who were once racked with fear (like I have been). The great benefit of being sober from drugs and alcohol for a while is that I’ve been able to remember the early days of recovery from that manifestation of the disease and know that if I’ll only follow a few simple steps to the best of my ability and not give up and keep doing it over time, I too can recover. I also can remember how painful that it was in the beginning so the pain I’m feeling around admitting powerlessness in this area is more tolerable. I do know that the same power that got me sober from alcohol can get me sober around underearning and I’m willing to go to any lengths to enjoy the life that recovery in this arena promises.

I went to a Super Bowl party tonight and actually had a lot of fun. I don’t do big parties that much any more. I’m usually much more interested in a quiet dinner with a few interesting people but this one was actually a lot of fun. There were many nice people there and I enjoyed talking about my goals and dreams and hearing about others’. There was one guy there who had had a lot to drink and smoke. He was pretty wasted and only got more so as the evening wore on. He was a very sweet guy and took to me immediately. Even though I told him about ten times that I don’t get loaded anymore, he kept forgetting and offering me drinks et. al.. He told me that he had been a “recovered alcoholic” for seven years, never reaching out to any programs or anything (“their stupid”) but had decided to go back to drinking “a little bit.” That “little bit” appeared to be a whole lot tonight and I felt a lot of compassion for him. It was a gift to have the opportunity to do a little time travel and look myself (from twenty years ago) square in the eye. The next time I’m asked to “pray for the alcoholic who still suffers,” I will think of this guy.

I had breakfast with my ex’s mom this morning. She still signs her texts to me “Mom.” That means a lot to me. I still love her a great deal and seeing her again reminded me of all the kindness she showed me while Adam and I were married. When he and I officially split, I made him take my wedding ring off my hand. I had worn it since he put in on at our wedding.  He took both rings with him when he left that day. Mimi (Adam’s mom) told me that he had taken his wedding ring to New York (I hope not to hock it. It’s Tiffany platinum) and left mine behind in her jewelry box. She asked me if I wanted it back. This is strange (maybe not) because I had been thinking about the rings this week—wondering what he’d done with them. I told her that I would like to take it; she took it out of her purse. We both cried. I cried a lot. I was actually surprised by how hard it hit me and I think she felt bad about bringing it up. She apologized and I assured her that it was a great idea and the next step in my healing. I had made Adam take it off of me for the symbolism of it all. Even though I ended the marriage, it was his behavior that finally drove me to it. Making him take my ring off was my way of saying, “You did this.” When Mimi gave it back to me today, I slid it on my finger so I would lose it (as if). It felt strange to wear it again after almost two years and having worn it for five years before that. I didn’t think it was a good idea to keep in on beyond the trip home (for obvious reasons) so I took it off and put it in my cufflink box to take it back to Alabama with me on Tuesday night. When I took it off my hand when I got home, it felt very good. It was again symbolic in that I was making another conscious decision of separation from him. I felt empowered.

I know I’ve vented a lot of anger about Adam in the blog. Although “revenge” was never my intention, in telling about some of the secrets of our marriage, if I have to be honest, I didn’t really care if he got hurt in some way by people knowing some of the shit he pulled. Part of me regrets hanging him out to dry so publicly. I do, after all, still love him even if I never want to see him again. “Coming out” about the abuse was another important part of this healing process and (as I’ve already learned and as was my hope) it has empowered others who were (or are) victims of abuse. But that’s all. I’m done talking about Adam in the blog at all. There’s nothing else to say. The tears I shed when Mimi gave me back the ring today reminded me of how much I loved Adam. In some ways I miss him very much— the good parts. A lot of the vitriol and anger that I expressed so publicly was simply because I was hurting so badly. He wasn’t a good match for me. But I still loved him very deeply and in some ways probably always will. I was just hurt and sad and angry that it hadn’t worked out. And even though if I had done everything perfectly, if he wasn’t willing to “do his own work” (and he wasn’t) there would have been no saving the marriage— I am now willing to admit that I was not in recovery in some ways that I badly needed to be (mostly around this unlearning thing) and if I had been, maybe he would have been more inclined to do what was necessary to stay sober and to grow emotionally so he could stay married to me. All this is hindsight and speculative and perhaps therefore useless. I mention it only to take public responsibly for my part in it all and acknowledge that it must have been no picnic being married to me either. I’m serious when I pray for his wellbeing now. I hope he has an incredibly happy life. I hope his lessons come as gently as possible. And I release him to God’s care. I have to move on. Goodbye Adam. There will always be a room in my heart that only you could enter.

See y’all tomorrow.

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