There are parts of me that just cannot be reasoned with. (Just ask this Kitty….he knows what I’m talking about!)
I know that moderation is considered a good thing – that a little bit of something is usually healthier than a lot of the same thing. I know this because it has been proven time and again in health journals, with kill-joy statistics and because the Bible even tells me so in Proverbs.
But you cannot make me understand this when I am eating a single Dove dark chocolate and the one-inch-squared melty goodness is coating my tongue. I immediately want more, lots more.
Chocolate, but only in moderation? Now that’s just crazy talk.
When I was a smoker, I burned down two packs of menthol lights per day. To be honest, I enjoyed smoking immensely, so why would I only smoke one pack in a 24 hour period? Okay, maybe because I couldn’t really afford it. And it affected my blood pressure and caused respiratory disease. Bad example.
Before I got sober, I absolutely could not drink moderately, even though I really tried to “pace” myself. (Advising an alcoholic to “pace” her drinking is like telling a tsunami to “pace itself” when it comes ashore….Actually, my life and victims of a Tsunami and had more in common than you might think; like walking around in a dazed state of shock while more and more destruction builds around you.)
From the very first time I took a drink, I knew that a thousand drinks would never have been enough, and one drink would always be too many. So drinking, as it relates to my moderation skill set….. Maybe that’s not the best example either.
This part of me who just can’t comprehend the “moderation” concept? In early recovery I found out that she is (a) quite an unreasonable brat, and (b) very loud and insistent. She is the troublemaker who insists that if ONE of something is good, than SIX of the same thing is GREAT!
And I have to tell you, that mindset makes a whole bunch of sense to me; it appeals to me.
Since that loud, insistent part of me won’t listen to reason, I just have to tell her “NO” sometimes. I don’t allow myself any cigarettes or alcohol, not even on special occasions. (Not even at weddings, not even at MY OWN wedding, not at birthdays, anniversaries, bar mitzvahs, pretty days here at the beach, groundhog’s day, on Leap Years, Thanksgiving, graduations, well, you get it.)
Since I can’t drink in moderation, I don’t drink at all. But something has to fill the space and time now laid bare by abstinence.
Indulgences. Sweet, sweet indulgences.
Indulgences fill the space in which I couldn’t make moderation fit. And they say “YES”!
Yes, I can hunker down and watch as many episodes as I like of the TV shows “Lockup” and “Swamp People” during marathon week. And I shall watch them whilst lounging around in my PJs. And not feel the least bit guilty.
Yes, I can take an afternoon to goof off and peruse the website featuring “parenting fails” because – I’m just being honset – it makes me feel like a slightly better parent after I look through them.
Yes, I will allow myself leisure time to surf the interweb’s selection of cat pictures with snarky captioned comments (Don’t judge, it is really quite entertaining – see above for an example.)
Yes, I can rub my elderly doggie’s belly for as long as I’d like at one stretch, and take my time scritching her ears and generally loving on her with nary a thought for “moderation”. Let’s face it; it’s a win-win for her and me.
Yes, I will blast my music while I am editing an article or cleaning the house, and “krunk” the bass up so high I feel it in my chest. I will not be moderate with the funky beats of Herbie Hancock, nor the Earth, Wind and Fire tunes I so adore. It is impossible to feel sorry for yourself when you are listening to either of those guys.
And Yes, Yes, YES! I will love my husband with wild abandon, holding nothing back. I will neither kiss him moderately, nor pray for him moderately, nor appreciate him in moderation. He is my passion, and there is no room for moderation wherever passion is concerned.
Yes, I will indulge my children (although they are spoiled already) and remind them indulgently how much I love them. Generously, I will spend the greatest gift of all with them – time. They are my passion also, and as I said, there is no room for moderation whenever passion is concerned.
I will love God and His only begotten son, Jesus Christ, with utter extravagance, and ask for His Holy Spirit to be POURED out in my life, not sprinkled moderately.
And yes…..I will copiously forgive myself for my lapses in practicing moderation with my chocolate consumption. You know, because its a passion thing.