I keep coming back

Tracy Bullock
5 min readFeb 7, 2022

To when I came back

And don’t you dare think it is admirable.

This month, we are talking through the literal and abstract concepts of recovery. On the literal side — the inspiration comes from the annual celebration of my own recovery anniversary. A more subtle and less selfish individual might keep that to themselves. “Not I! Not I!” I say. Just as attempts at wearing “dress up clothes”, and preening my behavior towards being whatever I have been told about “professionalism” or “adult” or “good enough” have failed me, so has subtleness about this most auspicious date on the calendar.

Diving into the reality of my recovery annual marker has, in the last 15 years, looked a good deal of ways. Personally there have been a healthy amount of relapses, more than one performance piece, a vacation, a love affair, wellness adventures, athletic endeavors, intense therapeutic undertakings (of varying value), essays, and fictional tellings of the high and lows and in-betweens. Every year, I go to a group and tell my story. At this point, it is less of “telling my story” than it is repeating a very harrowing (and entertaining) monologue to move the masses and make me look pretty dang courageous and wise. As I look back and look forward at the rituals used to mark the passing of time, I see practices, certainly this far in, which are lazy, indulgent, lost and highly confused. Too easy. Too surface. Exclusive. Removed. Wet. Limp. Arrested, distracted, and whatever other words of wicked ickiness the thesaurus might offer.

And then I stop.

I stop to note another kind of repeated practice — the criticism. What is interesting about the first and now with the former is that the second is something I deeply connect with. Something I do at all times of year. Kicking my own ass feels real and right and true, as if I was at some playland of positive antics, and then I see her. I see that old friend across the bar winking and buying me my favorite drink. She knows well enough why I have come here, because they know my name. Because being me in the world and dissing me in the world are like the breath and blinking that colors at every moment of every bit of my everything. Negativity is the fire below the furnace of self-abuse that I am still in deep medical debt to recover from. No yoga nor colorful…

Tracy Bullock

Career Coach & Inspiration Instigator. Simplicity we provide. Dreams we deliver. Weekly Deals & Dispatches: https://bit.ly/3dUbcsa https://linktr.ee/sdyd_2020