Into The Looking Glass: Facing the Cliff in Recovery
Facing the Cliff in Recovery
(Based upon Creed's song and video, Six Feet From The Edge)
The main character is singing while standing upon a crumbling cliff edge, falls in a free fall until he hits rock bottom, faces a sand storm, then meets a woman who presents him a bowl of water containing her tears, as he looks on to view the face of the demon of his own making. At the end of the story, it is discovered that he is found once again standing upon the cliff, the fall was merely a fearful image he had. Instead of facing his fear, he chooses instead to stay planted upon the cliff. In denial, he clings to the belief that he is safer than moving forward. As a result, he stands alone, empty, and suffers.
"...found the road to nowhere"....addiction, a road that crumbles underneath you and isolates you more the longer you stand on it
"Hold me now"...a cry for help, an acknowledgement of fear, a realization what one must face
“I’m six feet from the edge”…despair and facing one's potentially painful climax towards resolution
“Maybe six feet ain’t so far down”…denial of either the difficulty or what one must face
The fear of falling, going over that edge and hitting rock bottom, which the main character fears doing…imagining the worst, his outcome. The video of this excellent song portrays a path of Recovery from addiction…from whatever demon has you. Like the character, it often entails facing that very edge, hitting rock bottom, then facing that demon found in one’s pit of despair (the symbolism of the vid). In genuine recovery, it is often an intimate, inward, solo journey…despite the anxiety of the free falling, eventually coming to trust the process. The main character then sings out “....cause I still believe there’s something left for you and me.” A belief in something worth saving....something more than oneself. Hope...a future place more grounding and stable than standing on the current precipice. Hope provides that additional energy to sustain us, to move us forward. He comes to realize this from staring into a bowl of water, containing the bloody tears of those he has come to hurt. Yet, his recovery is his own journey. No one else can do it for him.
However, as the story goes on, he actually hasn’t fallen over his edge yet or hit his rock bottom as evidenced by the end of the video…he is right back at the beginning where we first met him, just teetering at the edge. Denial holds him back from what he must face, as his demon waits down below. The video then ends by his singing, “...holding on to all I think is safe.” Denial at its best. In this sense, the cliff becomes nothing more than a reflection of himself...his isolation, his pain, his fears. In his shame as he looks away and downward, he holds back from what he must do for himself.
The message is very deep...if not personally relevant for us all. We all have our cliff we must face...our personal crisis moment. And when facing it or leaping off it, often all we have left is our blind faith to propel us forward...not looking back. It is a cutting of the strings or the chains of our addictions...our personal weaknesses. It is a process of allowing them to die in our life in order to permit new growth.
A secondary message from the story is why wait...why wait till you are "down to one last breathe" or at your worst...before you begin taking that leap of faith in a new direction? How many more tears must one cry or how many tears must be shed by another before the ball gets rolling? This is a question only one can answer for oneself.
If you are a nurse in recovery, consider this little post a resting spot...a spot to give thanks and to take some time to reflect honestly...how far you've come and what must yet be done...as you also honor those who seek the same. It is also a time to appreciate those who you have in your life right now and to be grateful for them. It is not an easy road...but can be made much easier if we respect ourselves better and those who continue to touch us.
About Thunderwolf, MSN, RN
Joined: Oct '04; Posts: 12,613; Likes: 3,285
Charge Nurse; from US
Specialty: 32 year(s) of experience in Med-Surg, Geriatric, Behavioral HealthFeb 9, '09Lastly, I wish to reiterate what I previously mentioned in my first post here:
If you are a nurse in recovery, consider this little post/thread as a resting spot...a spot to give thanks and to take some time to reflect honestly...how far you've come and what must yet be done...as you also honor those who seek the same. It is also a time to appreciate those who you have in your life right now and to be grateful for them. It is not an easy road...but can be made much easier if we respect ourselves better and those who continue to touch us.
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