I'm having one of those moments where I am witnessing the power of the "Aunt Becky effect" on my stepwork in Narcotics Anonymous. In case you missed it the last time I talked about it, click here to read all about it.
I'm working on that 8th step list of all the people to whom I owe amends. Y'all, I can't remember what the hell I ate for breakfast, or where I left my pants. I most certainly don't remember all the people I fucked over in the last 42 years.
So I broke out some old stepwork assignments, hoping that they would trigger some memories.
What I got instead was shit like this, from step 4:
"Who or what triggered a feeling? What was the feeling? What were the situations? What was my part in each situation?"
My answer went exactly like this (I blame Aunt Becky):
I just don't even get this question. Am I supposed to remember every feeling I've ever had and know what 'triggered' it? I'm human. Breathing can trigger happy. An empty room can trigger lonely. 'Ladder 49' can trigger sad. I really don't understand this series of questions. Too vague. Seriously--"who or what triggered a feeling?" presupposes that I buy into the notion of triggers. I am human, humans get emotions, often for no apparent reason. Do I have to have a reason to feel happy? When am I supposed to look at? Some days I have no real feelings and some days there is so much shit going on that I feel a different feeling every 5 minutes, sometimes multiples at once, and sometimes for no reason at all. I mean, is the fact that the toilet paper is coming off the roll the wrong way a REASON to be angry?
It gets better, y'all.
next question: what was my motivation, or what did I believe, that led me to act as I did in these situations?
What situations? feelings aren't "situations".
The icing on the cake? This question.
What do I do with my feelings once I've identified them?
my answer, quoted word for word: "I feel them. I really wanted to write down that I auction them off on e-bay."
(Yes, I for really for real wrote that shit, and read it to my sponsor, who was not amused.)
And just for fun, here's another giggle for you from my fourth step:
Q: "What have my relations with my neighbors been like? Do I notice any patterns that carried through no matter where I lived?"
A: yep. I have neighbors?
Y'all, I just don't understand this obsession with feelings and why people seem to think I should feel things more than I actually feel things.
I used to wonder if I was defective, or sociopathic, or something else fucked up.
The more I stick around in Narcotics Anonymous and the more I hang around with the brains behind The Band, the more I realize that I am probably pretty normal.
Lots of us believe that feelings are bullshit. So are pants. But this post is about feelings, not pants.
Most days, I really don't have feelings; or, if I do, they're not noteworthy. When I do have strong feelings, it usually sucks pretty bad. I certainly don't want to talk about that shit, you know?
However, at the moment, I am feeling some resentment. Why?The first question in step 8? "Am I hesitating in any way about working the eighth step? Why?" My answer: "I am. Because so many of these questions are really dumb."
Feelings are bullshit. Especially feeling the way I feel right now:
all fucked up because I cannot remember most of my life.
I can't remember all of the people I have fucked over. I can't even remember all of the people I currently know.
At least I currently know where most of my pants are. Perhaps I should just grab on to that and put today in the win column.