If you have ever attended an Alcoholics Anonymous or Narcotics Anonymous meeting, you have no doubt heard of a higher power. Some people have no problem accepting that there is a higher power that they can turn to for help but others like myself do not take to this notion very easily.
As much as I wanted to believe that there was a God up there looking over me…I just couldn’t. I would hear people in my Narcotics Anonymous meeting talking about their higher power and how they gather strength from knowing that there is one. I of course related the idea of a higher power to the God that was shoved down my throat when I was young Catholic. I just wasn’t buying it.
As the weeks went on I realized that I was kind of warming up to the idea of something greater than myself out there. I told myself that I wouldn’t try to fight this acceptance that I was gaining. I was just going to ride it out and see where it took me. Where it has taken me is a very strange place.
I first noticed it when something annoying happened to me. Instead of getting mad like I normally would and letting it ruin my entire day I kind of laughed and said “good one”. It hit me, I was talking to my higher power. I was saying, “Ha! You almost got me with that one”. Was I going crazy? If any of you knew me just a few months ago you would know that I could not wrap my brain around the thought of their being anything resembling a higher power and here I am talking to it.
I can’t even begin to explain to you what I think my higher power is, honestly I don’t know. Right now for me, the idea is very general. I don’t put much thought into what or who this higher power specifically is. I just am beginning to believe that I have one.
Now I find myself talking (in my head, not out loud…that would be kind of weird) to my higher power at night while I’m trying to fall asleep. I just try to connect with it. I don’t have any specific way that I do it, I just kind of think about it and express what I’m thankful for and stuff like that.
Then it hit me…“Holy crap, I think I’m praying”. Is that what I am doing? It must be. I’m assuming there is no right or wrong way to pray so I must be praying. It is funny that someone that made her Confirmation in the Catholic Church wouldn’t know if what they are doing is praying or not. That is because from the time I can remember I never really believed that there was a god.
I went through the motions of going to church, never getting anything out of it, I just did it to make my parents happy. As soon as I was old enough I stopped all together and have pretty much been against any organized religion ever since (I still kind of am). This is really bad. If you know anything about the Catholic religion, you go to confession and then you are given your penance. It is usually a bunch of prayers that you are supposed to say and then you are forgiven by God. Well, even when I was very young I used to just pretend to do the penance. Can you believe that? Even as a little girl I just didn’t think there was anyone up there looking in on me.
That’s why the idea of me praying to a higher power before I go to sleep seems to alien to me. Honestly I love doing it. It really centers me and makes me feel calm. What I have come to find is that you cannot force any belief. It just needs to come to you. Finally it has come to me.