Hey World! Check Out My Recycling Bin!

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Once you experience  freedom in one area of your life then you crave freedom in all areas.

The taste of freedom is that good!

Ever since I came clean about my dependence on alcohol, (this November will mark 12 years of sobriety)  my goal and desire in life has been to live completely free.  Nothing brings me greater joy than that.

I love being able to put my head down on my pillow at night, close my eyes, and rest in peace.  And this isn’t because I’ve done things perfectly.  This isn’t because I haven’t failed or made mistakes.

No, it’s the exact opposite.  It’s admitting every day that I’m not perfect and in need of grace. I will fail.  But, I refuse to live my life trying to hide my flaws.  That’s not free.

Fear wants us to believe that hiding causes less pain and injury.  But fear is a liar.  Nothing will eat at you and destroy quicker than secrets and silence.  Nothing.

I might have shared this story before but, when I was using alcohol to “solve” my problems, I used to hop around to different stores to buy my daily bottles of wine.  I didn’t want the people at one particular store to get the idea I had a problem. I hated when one cashier would see me multiple times in a week.  So, my routine was to grocery and liquor store hop.

I also remember those first couple of months into my recovery.  I remember sharing with my 12 step group how giddy I was over my recycling container.  I wanted to show the world my recycling bin!

Take a look inside, World!  I’ve got nothing to hide!  I am no longer ashamed.  I no longer live in fear of being found out!  

Prior to recovery,  this wasn’t the case.  Every week, I would stack another empty bottle in the recycling containers.  Every week, I would haul them out to the end of my driveway for the recycling truck to pick up.  But, of course, I didn’t want to look like a drunk (I just wanted to look like someone who cared about the environment)  so I would never put all my bottles in the bin.  Some, I opted to hide at the bottom of my trash can so people wouldn’t think I had a problem.

Folks, that’s no way to live.

I guess that’s why I sometimes air my dirty laundry in this writing space.  It’s me dragging my recycling bin out to the curb for all the world to see.

I want my words to inspire others to come out of hiding too.  I want others know what it’s like to dance in a field of freedom and to feel the cool green grass in between their toes.

“Sin thrives on self-deception, and self-deception thrives on silence.” Pete Wilson

Are you hiding something from the world?  Let me encourage to courageously bring your failures out into the light.  Find a safe place and share.  Let the healing and the freedom begin!


9 thoughts on “Hey World! Check Out My Recycling Bin!

    1. Eileen Post author

      Thanks, Teresa. It’s a message that I don’t think I will ever get tired of sharing. Freedom from hiding is a beautiful thing.

    1. Eileen Post author

      It does take courage, Bill. And one thing about coming clean that I’ve found is that when we do… life most likely doesn’t miraculously get better overnight. Some of the problems we had while in hiding will still be there when we step into the light. Yet, there is a peace and a power that comes with admission. And it’s so much bigger than our circumstances!

  1. Betty Draper

    Eileen, you are one courageous wise hearted woman and God bless you for airing your dirty laundry. Years ago I played Rahab along with seven other women who played other women in the family of Christ. One of the ladies said we were airing God’s dirty laundry. I am so glad He filled His story with frail people so He could get the glory. You just gave His so much glory with your honesty. Great post.

    1. Eileen Post author

      Betty, Thank you for your constant support and encouragement! “airing God’s dirty laundry” I like that! Have a beautiful weekend. I’ll be in touch.

  2. David Rupert

    I would have never thought about this — but I’ve done the same kinds of crazy things to “hide” my sin, my imperfection. Brilliant illustration.

    Is it just me, or are you really in good place these days? Your writing is just brilliantly insightful!

    1. Eileen Post author

      David, it’s crazy enough when you’re living it and trying to pass it off as “nomrmal” 😉 In hindsight…it seems even more bizarre. Hiding is an exhausting way to live. Honestly, there are days when I can’t believe that was me. God really does follow through on His promise to make us new creations.


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