Having faith is the key to peace of mind.

I didn’t grow up in a “faith-filled” home.  I never observed any one at 827 being quietly peaceful, trusting that the experiences we were sharing would work out OK.  The days and nights were generally very tense, undergirded with the expectation that an outburst over something, large or small, imagined even, might occur at any moment.  And usually did.  Night after night the feeling present at the supper table mimicked the feeling at lunch.  Tension was served and felt with each bite.  Our family doctor, Dr. Cole, told my mother that I had a nervous stomach.  What I really had was extreme anxiety that made eating nearly impossible some nights.  Living in my home was hard.  Peace was something I could never have defined. Tension was all I knew.  Tension defined all six of us.

I did have a place I loved to be though and that was in Logansport with my grandparents.  My grandmother had a quiet presence about her.  No wonder I loved to visit them.  Her comforting words and arms and smiles would temporarily convince me that everything was OK.  When I thought about home when I was with her, my stomach would twist and turn.  I hated to feel, even from afar, the tension at home.  I feared it would never change.  And as a matter of fact, it never did.  Not even with the passage of time.  Tension was as fresh in my parents old age as when they were young.  How tragic, really.

Tension is hard on all of us.  No matter our age.  But we choose the feeling, as strange as that may seem.  Unfortunately, we seldom understand how and when we made that choice.  Certainly I didn’t know I had chosen it.  We do imitate that which we observe, however.  And my times with my grandmother were simply too short for me to adapt to her way of living and seeing the world.

For many who grew up in environments like mine, leaving home, choosing to be surrounded by new philosophies, new people, new opportunities, became necessary in order to catch a glimpse of a life free from tension.  And that glimpse didn’t come very quickly for me.  It took a few years, a few bad relationships, one painful marriage and multiple suicide considerations before I was solidly awakened to a better choice, a saner perspective, a softer kinder feeling within.  What brought me to this new experience of faith, this place of wellbeing, was two decades of near constant alcohol and drug use that could have ended my life.  But I reached that new place.  I arrived at the saner, faith-filled place with the help of friends who had been sent to make sure I’d arrive and the “place” had a name; it was called, Alcoholics Anonymous.

How did you get to your “faith-filled” place?  Are you helping others find their own place too?

 

 

2 Comments

  1. I love this one 😉 it reminds me of my childhood… No faith just rigidity and constant tension. This also reminded me of my own grandmother and how gentle , kind and loving she was and how I always felt safe with her. She passed when I was nine in 1980. There is a new step grand baby in my life now. I so enjoy spending time with her, we usually have her every other Saturday, she’s only 2 1/2 months old, I’ve already been reading to her, holding her and telling her I love her. I had a experience recently with a dear friend of mine…a spiritual experience.. Where I found out we knew a lot of the same people some of that have already gone from this world…and it was surreal finding out our lives are so connected.

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