Friday, June 29, 2007

Sunlight Dancing in the Window

The sun sank low dancing in the window as I sat in last night's A.A. meeting. I watched oblivious to the internal goings-on as several black children played in the field across the street through the window. It was an open meeting with anything goes as the topic. I smiled as the little elderly cat lady talked about her cats. William, an always quiet and steadfastly silent man, then spoke up surprising me – his dirty and calloused mechanic's hands shaking from nervousness. He is such an awkward fellow reminding me of my own social anxieties.

"I've been a year without a drink and I still struggle," he said with his head hung low as he sat his coffee on the table to keep from spilling it.

"Alcoholism is a lifelong disease," Phillip, the wise patriarch, chimed in. "It will get easier. Just keep coming back and keep working the steps."

Wanda sat next to me drinking her own coffee. She had on the most wonderful perfume that teased my senses and her nurse's scrubs. Despite her advancing age, I noticed she is still a beautiful and alluring woman. I quickly looked away before she could catch me staring at her. I have always been enamored with older women shunning the younger models.

The meeting ended and I put a five dollar bill in the donation basket as it passed keeping in mind that I would have easily spent that on beer during my drinking days. Wanda walked up behind me and put her arm around my shoulder pulling me close.

"I hear you gave up on your support meeting," she said.

"I know," I replied. "I feel like a failure."

"Well, I think you are amazing just for trying to start something so hard," she said. "It took years for A.A. to take hold and get going."

Her saying that made me feel better. I seem to be able to start things, but have a terrible time finishing them. It is the story of my life. I gave Wanda another hug and quietly slipped out the backdoor to walk home. A cacophony of katydids greeted me in the humid summer air. Memories of my Memaw and nights spent on her porch drinking sweet iced tea and listening to said katydids came to mind. I realized that the here and now is what is important as you will never get a moment again. It is not about starting or finishing something. It is about living in the moment for tomorrow may never come. It took me 35 years to learn and realize that.

"Everything is going to be okay," I said to myself as I passed through the mill village and into the old part of downtown.

Everything is going to be okay…


CollegeGirl said...

Great attitude you have!

2 LMZ FARMS said...

I haven't visited in awhile. Sorry to hear that you stopped your new group. Do you think that you gave up too soon? I know that you are excited about getting moved into your new home and having your freedom. Just hearing you talk about it makes me excited. I have started a new blog this one is more of a personal journal than the other. Guess what. I'm going to be writting some articles on goats for a newspaper. Will let you know more about it. I'm so excited I just had to let you know. I'm still waiting on your book. I want it signed personally by you. Better get busy on it.
Have a good one and a great weekend.

Josie Two Shoes said...

I love this piece of wisdom, Andrew. All we truly have is the here and now. Time spent worrying about yesterday or tomorrow is time lost today.

Summer said...

Hey Sweets... Everything will be ok for you, I'm sure of it.

CareShare Network said...

Great writing. Good luck with the book.


You are correct, everything will be okay!

@depot said...

Hello there...

Nice blog and have a nice day


You are always invited to my place!!

One said...

Success on your new road. May you have another 35 years to enjoy all that is 'OK' in your life without any feelings of 'failure'; that's the corrupting, sick part of living, that feeling. There should be a self help group for that feeling. It's membership would soar! In who's interest is it that one feels like a failure? Living is success. It's all in the eye of the beholder, no? Again, enjoy your success!

2sunset said...

Gee Andrew,
why not just say "several children played"?

O(^_^O)..Oh..Ho..!..Blog *** said...

Your blog is great

I like it

by Sama

Eric said...

Andrew, isn't it wonderful when we finally get a seemingly simple lesson like the one you got. I sometimes think they are the best lessons. I know they feel so much sweeter.

Just a quick comment for 2sunset, ...probably because what he saw was 'several black children played in the field across the street '. There is nothing wrong with being accurate. It is something that writers strive for.

P I F F L A N said...

I need to come back mother was not as strong as you, she died of alcoholism and I still have scars in my soul from my childhood. I am glad you are stronger!

Lauren said...

I am not sure how I found you here, but I am glad I did. I am inspired, many thanks. You are terrific!

Shadow said...

what a gift..
thank you

Jeani said...

I feel like I have been at a support group every time I read your blog and the comments. You
are NOT a failure. You have encouraged me many times.

Victorya said...

Ah, I liked your writing, great use of the senses!

Very bittersweet story too. I also struggle with 'the now'.