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Jewish Journal

Love

by Beit T'shuvah

May 1, 2013 | 8:58 pm

By Inga Roizman

 

I suppose I should introduce myself as this is my inaugural ‘Addicted to Redemption’ submission. My name is Inga Roizman; I’ve been a counselor at Beit T’Shuvah for a little more than a year and a former resident upon two separate occasions.

 

On my first occasion I arrived spiritually bankrupt and medicating a broken heart and a void I’d had for a lifetime. I promptly met someone here… This temporarily filled the void, distracted me and it served as a very precarious idol of sorts.

On my second occasion, I had bottomed out on the idea that anyone had any power to fill this void—a wakeup call in the biggest way.  I knew for certain I was addicted to all the insane symbols of love (lowercase).

I had put all my faith into men, money, drugs, alcohol, and external validation…anything that would scream praise to my ego. Who doesn’t like these things? It feels good but it was never enough, it just doesn’t last long enough.

I had believed I was sustained by everything but G-d.

Addiction, amongst other things, is a substitute or a coping mechanism to deal with the anxiety or the fear of lack of love. Some people call this FEAR.

As a resident, I worked on my core issues of abandonment, validation an attention seeking, scarcity and separation. My perception was skewed but not too skewed to know that this perception wasn’t serving my life anymore.  

For me the answer was simple. I had to do something radical. I had to LOVE myself and extend the LOVE I want in the world.

Now, writing that makes me cringe a little because it sounds trite like those Facebook feel good, inspirational quote thingies but, it’s what I did. I really had to make a choice.

As a counselor at Beit T’Shuvah, I can see negative behavior in others as a “cry for love” and rather than perpetuate another’s chronic faulty belief about themselves, I can help them see they are worthy.  This is what it’s all about. This is what was done for me.

For me the shift had something to do with the choice to trust that I am a Holy Soul.  Being and extending the love I want seems to be the only cure for the existential anxiety and uncertainty in this world. This is the love I’ve been looking for all of my life.  We are one.

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