Yes, on the verge of sanity is the way I look at it. My life up to a certain point was not really insane –it just felt like it. You might recognize the feeling. You keep doing the same insane things over and over again and expecting different results. How is it that you and I are so good at this, that is, allowing our mind to chase us around in circles never finding a way out .
If you have been in a 12 step program for any length of time, you can see some of what I mean. Just by reading and looking closely at each of the spiritual principles of the 12 Steps you gradually become conscious of the dysfunctional way that you are living out your life.
The insanity begins to show itself for what it is –it is as it were exposed by the voices of the other members of the group. These men and women who have by now are discovering the core issues of their own insane ways of thinking and behaviors. As it states so pointedly in Step Two of the recovery program that we “Came to believe that a power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity.”
The members of the Depressed Anonymous group meetings have gradually painted a portrait of what insanity looks like. They say a picture is worth a thousand words. It’s when a member of the group, in detail fashion, shares with us how growing up he was told over and over again how “He would never amount to anything.” And guess what? He believed it! This prediction was fulfilled for everything that he put his hand to in life.
How about this one handed out to me by my teacher when I was in the third grade, namely “you will never be smart like your brother or your uncle ( a bible expert).”
She was right. I began to live with the shame of being inferior, the prediction of this authority figure gradually working its way into my subconscious from that moment on. I still remember feeling the flesh of my face turning red hot just thinking about that moment so many years back. Sharing this with the group and a therapist finally removed the scourge that it became in my life. I must have unconsciously worked against this false belief because later I earned a Master’s Degree and later a Doctoral degree.
Julia calls Depressed Anonymous a miracle. So far, she tells us that
“so far the most grabbing element of Depressed Anonymous has been the parts of the book where the author refers to the depressed person as a saddict, that is, a person attached or addicted even to sad and hopeless thoughts. Boy, did I ever see myself in these sections. Since then, I have learned to control my thought process. Now, very seldom do sad thoughts creep in. If I didn’t know any better, I’d say the first time I saw the description of a saddict, a light went on in my head. The actual miracle took place at that moment. And the beauty of the whole thing is that thinking positive thoughts becomes easier and easier, automatic, then ecstatic at times.
But it is not all that easy. I followed the Steps also. I work at them often. For just as sure as your mind is on the automatic positive gear, it can easily slip back to negativism without the proper maintenance , which includes weekly( not just regular) attendance at meetings, and the knowledge and practice of the Twelve Steps as well as for those that need it, medication plus therapy as recommended by your doctor. ” (C) Julia, Depressed Anonymous Personal Stories
Good luck! And if just one other person reaches the point where I am,then there is a hope that life can be different for you as well.”
Note: When I became aware of how to live on the verge of sanity and then start living a live of serenity I began sharing with others about the miracle of Depressed Anonymous. Now that I am feeling sane I just hope that you put this plan. that works, into your daily life.
Submitted by Julia, a member of Depressed Anonymous, writing her Personal Story in the Personal Stories section of Depressed Anonymous, 3rd edition. (2011) Depressed Anonymous Publications. Louisville. KY Page 122.
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