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It’s so important to make sure that I’m asking for the right things to be forgiven. Telling someone I’m sorry that I didn’t live up to their expectations doesn’t count, or even make sense.

Step Eight: Made a list of all persons we had harmed, and became willing to make amends to them all.

It’s not sound logic, thinking that by not fulfilling someone’s idea of who I should be is considered a failure, and therefore a harm. Unfulfilled potential is a tough thing to apologize for, because nobody knows the parameters. How close did I get to achieving… what, exactly? My alcoholism and insanity kept me from becoming an astronaut? A doctor? A lawyer? A cowboy? For me, there seems to be an unspecified glowing orb that’s always just out of my reach. Others stand by with their golden orbs cozy in their arms, watching me continuously grab air.

Walking through life with the opinion that you’ve let everyone down is a hard way to work the program.

But let’s not give the disease all the credit. Unfulfilled potential is an end result of my drinking, but many other factors are in accompaniment. Falling short of what’s expected is a projection I bring to the party; set up the screen, dim the lights, and start clicking away. It’s kind of a presentation that shows what’s left after doing nothing but isolating and obsessing.

Here’s why, for me, apologizing for not being good enough or not accomplishing enough doesn’t float: Because I’m assuming that I know what other people think of me (bad stuff) and that I need to apologize for not being a better, more accomplished person.

So, here’s the rule: Sorry I ruined your birthday party – yes. Sorry I didn’t live up to the idea that I think you had for me – no.

One thought on “you should try the orb district.

  1. Yup – you got it. We can’t get into their minds and figure out what their expectations of ours are. They probably don’t know either…or are as muddled by it. Things shift as well, so it’s never static. And as you state, there is no measuring stick on this. We can never go to mom and say “I am sorry I am not the son that you wanted me to be,” or something to that effect. But, we can make amends for wrecking her car.

    And keep in mind we are also not asking for forgiveness – the amend in not contingent on that. Whether they forgive us or not, we are still cleaning our side of the street. But having said that, it’s quite nice when they do forgive, or most often, they don’t always see what we did as that big a deal.

    Great post…:)

    Paul

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