Emotion is something that I would love to completely understand one day, I am under no illusion that it is possible, however if I can harness emotional strength and balance in myself then that will be a step in the right direction. Emotion runs deep in me, a trait I inherited from my mother and something that I have had to work on throughout my sobriety. I have used this gift of emotion in the past to manipulate people; I have also allowed myself to be manipulated by it. Emotion can be an inner reservoir of energy and strength, a miraculous gift or a powerful weapon, one capable of complete destruction.
I had never felt raw emotion until last year; don’t be confused by this I have felt emotions before however I never really respected them, nor did I understand how or why they needed processing. Previously in my life I would quickly drown away emotions, particularly those I didn’t want to feel or deal with; I chose to face my difficulties in a way I had grown accustom to, alcohol and ignorance. I have also been guilty of carelessly drawing upon emotion to gain influence or manipulating people to aid in my own endeavors. Addiction gives the same advice you hear given to hopeful musicians or actors, use your emotions to gain a connection with your audience; it has the ability to turn you into a Faceless man.
I strongly believe now that emotions should not just be felt, but lived. I had to live my emotions in order to ever understand how and why they affected me the way that they did. At one particular point I recall being hit with just about every emotion known to man in a single death punch, a single event was enough to nearly de-rail my recovery and give me an excuse to relapse. Emotions are not excuses, they are feelings and it was through those feelings and that experience that I gained respect for raw emotion, not masked, not false, the core, root, and raw emotion.
If we take the time to analyze our emotions and observe the underlining feeling to that emotion, we can start to develop knowledge of its impact. Rather than switching off, approach with a conscious decision to weed out the full range of emotions you are feeling. It may take some time, however gaining knowledge on this energy will allow you to live an emotion with thought and feeling, unlocking another level of consciousness within our lives and giving us again a powerful weapon, used for growth and rebuild not destruction.
As addicts we may never gain a strong hold on our addiction until we understand ourselves, we need to learn to live with our emotions, we must feel them in their rawest form, process them till their passing, learn and understand their meaning. Once we have lived with emotion from its birth to its death that is when we start to gain its strength.