Morphing out of fear

Puffy white clouds and small patches of blue today. Rain coming, the weather people say.  I can feel it in my bones, gimme sympathy. Oh, wait, that would be a line I stole from the Metrics:

It’s early afternoon and I’ve just seen off the nine-year-old grandson who spent the night last night.  Per his request, I had made “white lasagna” for dinner–lasagna with Béchamel sauce, Italian sausage, mushrooms, and Parmesan–which he devoured piece after piece of and finished off this morning. He and I had a good time watching “The Blues Brothers,” despite my husband being a complete no-show after promising he’d be home by two in the afternoon to take GS somewhere and not showing up until ten.  (Fact: you don’t have to be an alcoholic to act like one.)

It helped that my younger son dropped by with my other nine-year-old grandson, so the two boys played happily and my son and I had a long and fruitful conversation about alcoholism, AA, resentment, fear and what can be done to relieve it. My son is very disciplined about recovery. Twice a day, he spends time writing down an inventory of his resentments and the fears they’re based on, then meditates for 20 or 30 minutes.  It’s given his life a kind of balance it never had before, kept anxiety from taking over, kept him sober for 11 (or is it 12?) years. I respect him hugely.

Last night, I was so furious at my husband, I tried doing the same kind of inventory. It was quite illuminating about fearing abandonment and rejection, helped me put things in perspective–i.e., it’s not always about ME.

I love seeing the grandkids, and this one is particularly dear to my heart because he and his parents were living with us the first four years of his life.  After dinner, he pulled his Halloween costume out of his backpack and announced he was wearing it to bed.  Take a gander:


It’s called a morphsuit or second skin.  Form-fitting, covering the entire body including the face, it’s actually a little sinister, as though you’re looking at some alien form. With infinite patience and persuasion, I persuaded him not to keep the skin-tight front and back hoodie over his face at night. “Breathing,” I said, “it’s a good thing.” He looked at me scornfully, but complied.  I suggested reflector strips on the back for Halloween, but he would have none of it. The whole idea is to move quietly through the night undetected.  (Except, presumably, when you hold out your bag and shout, “Trick or treat!”  Happily, this is not my problem. His parents will be with him and will keep him safe.)  I tried to imagine myself in a morphsuit.  Shudder-worthy.  Witches robes for me.

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4 Responses to Morphing out of fear

  1. I enjoyed that song Susan! Here’s one of my favorites about “weather” moving in. It’s actually about depression; it has such a haunting quality to it.

    The Blues Brothers is another favorite of mine.

    That costume is a very interesting choice. I used to live my life that way. But now yes, hand me those witch robes. Good or wicked, they both fit on different days. (Happy you chose a witch vs a ghost, per your last post.)

  2. Imogen says:

    Hahaha that morphsuit is awesome!! Oh to be able to wear one of those, but i’m with you in the witches robes. I make a great crone (my new favourite word).
    I’ve read about this moral inventory on a lot of blogs and it sounds interesting. It’s great that the process worked for you and that your son gets such a benefit from it. I’m going to try it.

    • sswl says:

      Let me know how the inventory works for you, Imogen. The way my son does it, it’s like an abbreviated 4th step you do on a daily basis–at least I think so. There might be something in the Big Book about how to do it. Don’t know for sure–have never followed AA’s program, but I’m all for taking what’s useful where I can find it!

      • Imogen says:

        I don’t follow AA either but it sounds like an interesting exercise nonetheless. I think the big book is online so i’ll read up on what’s involved. Haha this could be interesting, will let you know!! :)

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