Priya’s Battle With Addiction Blog Series: Part 6 of 12
Posted by Reboot
I was completely unaware of the true meaning of the word resentment until I came into recovery. To me, ‘resenting something’ meant strong dislike of the subject- to hate it from the pit of my gut. Little did I know, I had lived in the darkness of resentments for many years- that of people, places, situations, and institutions.
In the grips of resentment, I felt powerful- a sense I longed for but never felt. I now had the power to manipulate, to hurt, and to harm the subject of my resentment and I did.
I’d spent a lot of time resenting people, especially those who didn’t suit my style. They were too cheeky, too confident, too cocky and even too nice or too carefree- to anything but me. There were also those who had offended me- it was the easiest way to make my resentment list. I never let go. I spent nights with a glass in hand, just thinking of how to get back- “oh the things I’d say!”- Mean and hurtful, I’d think of ways to put them in their place, so they would learn never to mess with me, so they would learn that I’m better. Many sleepless nights and many unproductive days of just alcohol and my thoughts- “how could I get back?” When I faced those very people, I seldom acted out, “it wasn’t the right time”.
Having hit bottom, I came into recovery with my back against the wall. I had no choice but to accept my disease in its full form. They said that Alcoholism was a three fold disease- physical, emotional and spiritual. I never cared for spirituality- It was for the week. I realized in recovery that my earnest intentions to hurt and harm others in the name of getting even was a deep and dark spiritual sickness. I was told, the only way I would stay sober is if my spirit felt free and this was nothing but spirituality. A few good people who had overcome this malady told me a few simple home truths:
Resentment was to relive old hurt. By reliving old hurt I was only punishing myself. In the grips of my resentment, I was like a stuck tape recorder- going over and over the most painful part of the track, hurting more and more each time.
If I was to bask in the light of sobriety I had to carefully assess my resentments and identify my part in the situation.
If I wanted to stop hurting from the wrongs of others, I simply had to let go of the idea of getting even.
If I were to let go of the idea of getting even, I had to accept my part in the situation and forgive the other for their reaction- My spirit would feel free.
I was always the loser when it came to resentment. I’d lost many good friends, a lot of precious time, a chance to get to really know good fellows and many moments of a good life, only because alcohol and resentment together gave me a shallow and superficial illusion of power. This false feeling of power would make me think, say and do things that were very unlike the natural me. This power play always left me feeling hollow, angry, frustrated and alone, and because of this, I had never stopped drinking.
Having worked on the process of “Letting Go” with a spiritual guide or mentor, at once I felt the heavy load of anger and resentment lift from my heart. My shoulders began to lighten and I started to HEAL. People noticed I was smiling more- my mentor once remarked that I was looking healthy and happy. No more was I walking with a scowl on my face, with a dark cloud of hate around me, my shoulders stooped with the weight of negativity. I started to feel joy, my days were easier and I felt free. Freedom of the crutches of resentment has allowed room for love and light in my life.
I’m not perfect- even today I tend to hold on a little to the wrong done to me, I re-live a little resentment only for a moment. Immediately becoming aware of the dark cloud looming, I shudder and work the process of letting it go. The presence of light in my life is so precious to me that I shiver at the thought of living in darkness again.
“Find out what happens next as Priya shares how she became completely ready to set her own house in order and learned the importance of always keeping her side of the street clean.”
Priya is an Addict and an Alcoholic who came into recovery at the young age of 23. She continues to work a 12 step program closely with a sponsor and has been sober for 5 years since 2011. Priya lives in New Delhi-India and has a joyous and fulfilling personal and professional life. In her free time, Priya enjoys reading, listening to music, bake and watching movies. She strongly believes that for her to keep what she has learned in recovery, she must share her experience, strength and hope with other recovering Addicts and Alcoholics.