Reaching out

I am in a place I haven’t known for about 10 years.  A place of overwhelm with anxiety over some current circumstances.

The last time I felt like this was when marriage #1 was falling apart and my now ex was ending things in the most abrupt and painful way.  I couldn’t believe what was happening and I was in constant horror, anxiousness, and preoccupation with what was going on.  I feared for the future and felt of little value.

Amazingly though, in time and as life progressed, I all but forgot those times and feelings of 10 years ago.  Much has changed.  Life has recovered so significantly that it seems like another lifetime that all of the pain and turmoil happened in.  It in fact seems like someone else’s life.

Yet, for the first time since then, I am on the verge of some very similar, although I will say a muted version, of those same feelings.

Our business, which has been a success and grown steadily over the past 5 years, has suddenly taken a completely unexpected slow-down.  We have been working to understand why, but the best we can do is identify a short list of possibilities, as the root cause is not clear.

I find myself in a version of the same horror, anxiousness, and preoccupation in this situation as I did in the last one.  A tremendous fear for my future has welled up, in spite of the fact that there are many options and opportunities I can switch to if our business flounders completely.  Which frankly is entirely unlikely, but the fear gets a hold of you and the worst comes vividly to mind…. and tries to stay there.

I am not far off 50… in just a couple years …. and all of the benchmarks that were “supposed to” be reached feel like they are not.  Not financially anyway.   The anxiousness has been a real effort to deal with, yet I know the worry is inordinate.  At least in my conscious mind.  But my subconscious is having a heyday with these few small indicators that our business may be in trouble.  Even though we may just be in a peculiar lull that is not easily explainable and may turn around at any time.

Yet unlike 10 years ago, I am grateful to say I am dealing with this situation sober, and with a collection of resources to help me get through that are making it more bearable than last time, including:

  • The practice of living a day at a time
  • The practice of fellowship in reaching out to others
  • The experience of having gone through a number of big challenges in recent years, all of which turned out ok in the end
  • A more practical understanding of how God works in spite of the outcome of the circumstances
  • A distrust of some of the voices of my internal dialogue
  • A trust of some of the more reliable and time-proven voices of my internal dialogue
  • An awareness of my tendency to “awfulize” minor negatives into huge catastrophes
  • A belief in my own ability to persevere and do what needs to be done, even if it doesn’t feel like I am getting anywhere 


I guess what I am saying is that fear is trying to move in.  And it has made some inroads.  I don’t want to lose what we have worked so hard to build.  My fears try to tell me the worst.

The truth is though, even if the worst were to happen, I still have many blessings in my life including my marriage, my health, my employability, my sobriety, and my veteran status of many of life’s most painful and challenging battles.

I simply wanted to put this out there.  To reach out and share what I am going through.  It has always helped in the past.




About Chaz

Husband, father, brother, son, friend. Sober member of AA. Grateful for the life God gave me and for the happy struggle of recovery.
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6 Responses to Reaching out

  1. And you have perspective. Enough to know that you’ll be okay even if the plans aren’t:)

  2. I am sorry for your stressful situation, Chaz, but it looks to me that you’re employing all the right tools to deal with it. In fact, you can help others deal with trials. I am praying for you, but I have a sense that, regardless of what happens with your business, God’s taking you to a better place in your life.

    • Chaz says:

      Thanks Bill…. invariably he does, doesn’t he? …. take us to a better place that is.

      If life were linear and easy, how could we be of value to those for whom it is not? Thanks for your prayer. Thanks for your encouragement. Today is a good day because I am doing good things. Tomorrow is tomorrow’s business.

  3. jeremiahandrews says:

    Isn’t there a promise that states … “Fear of people and of economic insecurity will leave us??” That one has dogged us for years, and we still can’t seem to dig out of that hole. The good thing is that today you did not drink over this. That’s a start, as a wise man said to me last week. Bring it down to the root … You did not drink, what are those things you can change and what can’t be changed. Who can you ask for help, the being ABLE to ask for help in sobriety is important.

    They say that God does not give us more than we can handle in any given day. Trust in your higher power, even when it seems that things are about to go under. I am hopeful things will turn around, but a good contingency plan never goes amiss does it ???

    Stay connected and we shall pray.


    • Chaz says:

      Hi Jeremy…. thanks for the encouraging words.

      Yes… the fact I didnt drink over it is a wonderful thing. Something to be grateful for even if other factors do not turn around. But gladly there have been some positive signs in the bigger picture.

      Funny how over-whelmed we can get with fear and how it limits our ability to see much else.

      And yes, there is a promise as noted in your comment. I have to say though, I am a little cautious on the promises. I suppose it comes down to what any of us believe the Big Book of AA is. And I believe, and many of its own admissions support this, that the Big Book is a collection of valuable and relevant experiences, observations, suggestion of men and women who like us, were not able to stop drinking on our own.

      I take the promises to mean that they are consistent outcomes. I suppose I have some studying to do on the matter.

      Thanks again for dropping by and the dialogue and encouragment.

      Things are looking better even in just a week since this original post.



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