This September will mark ten years since I took a major step toward saving myself from certain self-destruction.
I remember opening a phone book to look for a counselor to call. My criteria included only one item: to find a name I didn’t recognize. I knew so many people through my work, this was no small feat. I was nearly at the end of the alphabet when a new-to-me name jumped off the page, and I dialed her number.
The work I did with her was hard; some of the hardest, if not the hardest, work I’ve ever done. At first, I was so fragile (it’s hard to admit, even now) that she all but had to hold my hand and walk me through my life. She told me what I could no longer do, and she told me what I had to moving forward. My only job, at first, was to do as she said. Even that was hard, because those requirements were hurtful and confusing to some important people in my life.
She was all about saving me – from myself.
As I began to recover, and was approaching a place in my recovery where it would be time to say goodbye to this angel of mercy, she gave me a gift. It was unwrapped. In fact, it was a scrap of paper about 1/2″ tall and 4″ long. It read,
They are the wise and powerful words of Mercedes Voorhees, LSW. They saved me then, and they have saved me since then. They save me to this day. Today.
When a situation arises that causes the earth beneath me to tremble, and my balance to falter, I come back to those nine words in pretty short order.
I know what to do, and I do it.
A nine-word mantra meant to calm, assure, inspire, and motivate. That they save is an unexpected and much-appreciated bonus.
You know what else is saving me, on a whole-health level? Eating healthy. Eating vegan. I lost two more pounds this past week, for a total of eighteen in just under six weeks.
What saves you?