Regrets and how to process them

I think my post yesterday says something quite important for me.

I have lived as though I have no regrets and ‘put a brave face’ on so many things. I have ‘got over’ things such as the breakdown of my marriage, and ‘moved on’.

But have I ?

Or have I buried my shame and regret, my heartache, in a nice bottle of white wine, drinking steadily and heavily to blot out the pain of a smashed up family, the disappointment of divorce and the subsequent pain of an emotionally abusive partnership?  Have I really ever dealt with just how rubbish the educational failure of my eldest son makes me feel ? How guilty I feel for allowing ‘stuff’ to happen to my kids. How sad I feel for the wasted years? How lonely I have been and how fucked up the subliminal messages I have sent to my children?

The way I feel now makes me question all these things.

And then I look around me and see how bloody lucky I am. I have my health (at least for now) I am employed and solvent. My children are alive. I live in a first world country and take my security for granted.

I need to try and balance these conflicting feelings in my head; two weeks ago I went to the funeral of a 19 year old youth who died suddenly of natural causes. Seeing his devastated parents and a church full of sobbing family and close friends was a harrowing and sobering experience … That family will never recover fully from the loss of their son /brother… through no fault of anyone’s, their lives have been shattered. And in comparison I am so, so lucky.

Regret is pointless, It achieves nothing, just encourages me to go on blaming myself and beating myself up. I know I should instead focus on the positives. I still have son 2 and 3 who I can influence, son 3 is only 12 and so I have quite a lot of influence. We have had some really good times, some great holidays and I have a plan to go to Africa next Summer (I hope) with all three children…

I don’t have a balanced view right now, I swing from regrets to trying to be positive, seeming to find no peace or middle ground. I hope this is yet another ‘phase’ that will pass in time… I have planned a visit to an exhibition that I want to see with a friend I haven’t seen for AGES, this is positive and I’m looking forward to it, I expect we will have lunch afterwards and time for a catch up.

I had no idea, literally no idea when I started out 541 days ago that ‘being sober’ would have this profound an effect on me. I’m glad I didn’t know, because its scary enough walking the path without knowing whats round the corner. If I had known, I think I would have been too terrified to take that first step. Now its an act of faith continuing on this path – because I cannot go back, I cannot ‘unknow’ what I now know …

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So, I’ll uncap a Becks Blue lemon beer (0% alcohol)  this evening and watch ‘Dragons Den’ with the youngest and plod on …


4 comments

  1. We don’t have to act on every thought. Sometimes you just need to let it pass by, no additional investigation required.
    As a parent you are not responsible for how your children turn out. They are their own person.

    There’s nothing more to do than to say you love them and have their back and are there for support (moral, not always financial).

    The rest plays itself out.
    Enjoy your becks and dragons den!

    Anne

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  2. Lily you have done so well I admire you so much you have been through so much pain and suffering and come out on top stop beating yourself up Dont keep looking back just look forward How you came this far without alcohol is amazing ☆☆☆☆☆

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  3. Haven’t looked on here for a while. Just read your posts and don’t have the energy to respond properly (very very very emotional evening) but wanted to send over a hug & support. You’re doing amazingly, for you – and your kids. Second what Anne says (no surprise there!) xx

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  4. I think you’ve been an incredible example of dealing with addiction straight on. Your children cannot help but benefit from that. It made you much more powerful than you were, and that’s another incredible benefit for them.
    Plus you got them a puppy. 💕

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