“When you can’t run, you crawl, and when you can’t crawl, you find someone to carry you.” from the TV Series Firefly, episode “The Message”
I just had the opportunity to re-watch some episodes of Joss Whedon’s Firefly. In the episode “The Message” one of the characters remembers what Mal and Zoe told him on the battlefield. As he said it, all I could think about was the support we all get from the rooms and our fellows.
In my addiction, I was isolated. I thought I was running. In a way, I was running. Running to my destruction. As I hit rock bottom, I lost the ability to run. I also lost the ability to crawl for a while. I needed somebody to turn to. I went to my first meeting because my desperation to be sober outweighed my fear of the rooms. What I found was support.
There I found someone to carry me. I found folks who had walked in my shoes. Folks who had seen the bottom and were carried back from it. I thought I was so unredeemable, so unique, so broken. What I found in the rooms were people who could relate literally to my story. They were on the path to recovery, and I could to.
I needed someone to carry me in those first weeks. Even today, as I struggle with everything else in my life, I need to open myself to being carried. That is one part of what the fellowship gives us.
The other part as I have told newcomers every now and then is a knowing ear. There is nothing that you can tell someone in the fellowship that will shock them. That has been my experience. That gives me the faith that I can share anything with the group.
The room may be the first time you have shared your secret with anyone, including yourself. There have been things I have said in the rooms that I had never said out loud, even to myself. This was powerful to me. The fellowship has never reared back and said “that is too much.” The fellowship never will.
I don’t reach out as much as I should. I know I should do it more. I have trouble getting over my feeling of burdening someone else. It is also hard to admit weakness. Even though admitting weakness is strength, or at least I believe that now.
I need to be open to being carried along by my fellows. They will accept me and they will guide me gently along my path. I hope they will be there for the rest of my life. I hope I will be there for them.
As I stumble in my recovery and lose my ability to crawl, I will open myself up to being carried by my fellows. They will always be there for me, and I will be there for them.