Co-NNections Recovery Stories

The Way Out Is Through – June 4, 2024

I can’t tell you how many times I have said the words “The way out is through.”

I have said them, thought them, and more importantly lived them. I thought about them again recently when I heard someone talk about grief. I have learned that talking about my grief helps me to heal. Keeping the grief inside is too much to handle alone.

Their words took me back to my own black hole with loneliness. Loneliness goes to the core of my being. CoDA has helped me begin to shed some light on the darkness and the impact it has had on my life.

The words come back, “the way out is through.”

I tell myself that I have a lot of good reasons for being lonely at 67 although it doesn’t seem to help much. My mom was an adult child of an alcoholic. She used criticism to control and keep people at bay. I was beaten down at what seemed to be every turn. “You will never amount to anything” and “you are just like him” referring to my dad which was not a compliment, were two of her favorites. I dealt with the pain by cutting and running which helped soften the blow at the time but had different consequences later in life. I couldn’t wait to get out of the house and as far away as I could when I was old enough, but a change of geography only goes so far. I can only cut and run for so long. The flip side of the cut and run is that I end up lonely and feeling like a loser because I end up alone.

I am learning that the way out is through.

It helps to talk about it and talk to other people who have experienced loneliness too. There seems to be more of a focus on loneliness today which is a good thing since there seems to be even more of it post-COVID. I know I am not alone in my loneliness. If I really want to put it behind me, I know that I can talk about it more at CoDA. I think that is the only way I can heal. I am not a loser for feeling lonely. In recovery I am learning to face my loneliness.

There is power in community.


Mike H.


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