…or maybe the title of this little screed should be “If You Build It, Will They Come?”. When I came up with this title, 3 days ago, this was going to be a verbal vomit about how my sister (she of the elevated, but now normal, liver enzymes) had started drinking again, and how that made me feel. I did everything I thought I could, in addition to staying with her 24/7 for her first detox week of sobriety, to support her in this journey. Books, articles, motivation, websites, unconditional love…ad infinitum. Blah, blah, blah.
Then the other shoe dropped. I mean, if your liver enzymes return to normal, that means you’re not an alcoholic, right? Cue sad music here. I have been the lighthouse, I thought; I shined my light out into the darkness so she could find her way to the shore. What went wrong?
The flaw in my thinking was two-fold (well, actually it’s multi-fold, but I’ll hit the main two). The purpose of a lighthouse, I now realize, is to light the way for wayward seafarers to be able to make their own way to the shore. The lighthouse is unable to make them take the proper course, unable to save them, unable to even make them aware that they are in peril and need to be saved. OK…got it. The second flaw came to light in the physical embodiment of not one, but TWO, friends who have desperately reached out to me for help with their sobriety, within the last 48 hours.
Ah…the REAL purpose of a lighthouse is to provide a guiding light to safe harbor for all those seafarers who determine they need said guidance. Emphasis on “ALL”. Emphasis on “WHO DETERMINE THEY NEED”. I was so wrapped up in my…not disappointment…not dejection…disheartenment would probably be close…in my target’s lack of embracing her sober life, that I was unaware of some other seafarers that were holding on to the decks of their sinking ships and were about to be cast into the roiling cauldron of an unforgiving sea.
“If You Build It, Will They Come?”