HALT. No, really.

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I caught myself tiptoeing around the rabbit hole today.  I recalled what I wrote this morning: The rabbit hole is my siren.

Still, I answered its call.

I pulled up his friends list.  Again.  Another very young, very pretty woman.  Again.  I started to catastrophize.  Again.

I began feeling as if I wasn’t good enough.  I began wondering what he was doing–at. this. very. moment.  Was he messaging these other women?  Is that why he’s so busy and cannot respond to me?

In an instant, I was in free fall.  Straight into the rabbit hole.  Again.

I tried to talk myself through it with the intent of climbing back out of it, or, at the very least, slowing down the fall.

Remember, you can only control yourself. You are enough.  Think about what his actions tell you.  What purpose does falling into the rabbit hole serve?  Will it make you feel any better to stay in there?  

I thought briefly about texting him to ask him questions, share my anxieties.  But, reason did prevail there: You know that he won’t give an answer good enough because the problem isn’t him, it’s your reaction, your feelings.  Nothing he says will make you feel better.  You have to make you feel better.  

I knew reaching out to him, involving him in my codependent free fall would accomplish nothing–it would be a BandAid or, worse, be the Nitro that drives me further downward.


Yesterday, a woman in my CoDA group encouraged me to get to know the acronym: HALTS.  It stands for Hungry, Angry, Lonely, Tired, and Sick.  Get to know your feelings, she stressed.  Ask yourself, am I hungry, angry, lonely, tired, or sick?  If you are, address those things.

The idea is that we can be so far out of touch with our feelings, that we misidentify them, create unnecessary crises, and relapse in our recovery.

HALTS.

H-A-L-T-S.

I was hungry.  I had eaten a healthy breakfast, but attempted to get lunch twice without success.  I was also tired because my body and brain lacked the fuel it needed.

Eventually, I got lunch.  And aside from the four potato chips I quickly popped into my mouth in the kitchen, I stuck with my usual, appropriately-measured, mostly healthy lunch.  At 3:30 p.m.

And now, as I type at my desk, my lunch plate sits to the side.  My body feels more calm.  And with it, my thoughts.

Part of today’s free fall was disappointment that both his scheduled and mine prevented a lunch date today.  So, I did message him: “I’d really enjoy a nice dinner with you tonight.”

He immediately responded: “Ok, let’s do it.”

And then he sent me pictures of his work project in-progress.


The woman who taught me HALT indicated on our phone list last night that she is available to sponsor.  This is the same woman who animatedly told me about her digital interview experience that led to my share that same evening.

I messaged her.

“Ok, my friend.  Are you really looking for new sponsees?”

“Yep, I’m available to sponsor.”

We scheduled a phone date for Saturday morning.


Despite my body being freshly sated, I can feel the fray of an irregularly codependent day.  And that’s ok.

Deep breaths.  This moment is ok.  I’m ok.

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