Between Two Boats

I didn't sleep one single minute last night. I was kept company by Thich Nhat Hanh and his teachings in Being Peace.

It is saving me.

We went to the beach for our morning walk and found the ocean and sky in absolute turmoil.

As my friend put it, pathetic fallacy at it's best.

WhatsApp Image 2017-03-07 at 7.08.20 AM.jpeg

Today marks my 2nd week of being here in recovery, and 2 weeks of being sober.

I didn't expect to grow so much, so quickly. Stripping away all the regret, the grief, the shame, the guilt...I've uncovered myself again, by giving away my Self. 

Surrendering is a beautiful, indescribable thing.

I found a new place to do my morning meditation – it fondly reminded me of Siddhartha Gautama and the Bodhi tree. I'm not one bit surprised that I've walked past it every day, and only saw it today for the first time.

A perfect rock, beneath a perfect mango tree, facing this mornings tumultuous ocean, between two boats.

WhatsApp Image 2017-03-07 at 7.39.30 AM.jpeg

I found my place and made myself as comfortable as possible, my heart this morning and all night being tossed around as though it was riding the waves before me. I used its heaviness at that moment to ground me, solid like a mountain, upright like the tree I was sitting beneath.

I asked for the Serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the Courage to change the things I can, and the Wisdom to know the difference. Since I've stopped fighting and struggling to force change upon the unchangeable, I have become immensely lighter. Stripping away the shame, guilt, regret and grief – even lighter so.

I lost (found?) myself in meditation for nearly 30 minutes.

I find my mind wandering less and less each time now, and those 30 minutes are the most precious in my entire day. They're filled with quietude and gratitude, and today, a sort of loving kindness arose, that I sent to all the broken or hurt parts of me, the people I love, and those who could use it today. I gave thanks for yesterday's sobriety, for the strength I needed to remain calm and openminded in a heartbreakingly difficult situation last night, and for the limitless opportunity of this day.

I set my willingness to allow things to be as they are intended to be at my feet, and the ocean washed it away in a storm of foamy waves. I imagined it being transformed into whatever the ocean desires, and in its own way, will return it to me as it is intended to be.

There's a difficult and painful decision that needs to be made in my personal life back home, and it's beyond my control; I release my will to the Universe and ask again for Serenity to accept what I cannot change – and to allow things to be as they will be, as I cannot control it.

I open my eyes and consider the two boats resting before me.

WhatsApp Image 2017-03-07 at 7.12.06 AM.jpeg

The boat on my left looks perfect and upright, a fine boat that could easily handle the angry waves on a day like today.

The other is upside down and beat up, paint peeling and obviously worn from many years of battling the currents.

I notice the "perfect" boat is tethered to the tree. It can't sail anywhere.

The other, "imperfect boat" is not.

It's free to sail wherever it wants.

Sometimes, the obvious choice is not the one that will get you where you want to go.


xo Shawn

Sober, alcohol free recovery blogger.

Photographer. Writer. Ex-Blackout Artist.

Share the love: