As human beings we tend to pattern our lives in very particular ways. We hold onto pain from our past creating cycles of behaviour that colours everything we do, our attitudes about life, and our image of ourselves. We create strategies that serve as walls to block out the feelings of our deep pain. These strategies in turn become our prison assuring that we never escape our bonds.
The Sitting Swing looks at one woman's life as she seeks to escape these bonds and deal with her pain. This story follows the author as she is checked into an addiction treatment center for a 28 day period. In this account, she openly admits that she couldn't see her addiction. At one point, she states, "I felt sorry for them, but was grateful not to be among their ranks." Moreover, the author shares her initial plan of providing a good show, shedding a few tears, and then continuing her life as normal.
I enjoyed this book for two main reasons. I respected the author's openness and willingness to share her entire story, not just the parts of her experience that might make her look healthy and put together. I believe this aspect of the book will help many people realize that they are not alone in their pain, confusion, and stubbornness.
The second aspect of the book that I really liked was that the book did not really focus on the particulars of the author's addiction. Instead, the story looked at addiction as an underlying behavior that manifests as habitual patterns. One of the characters in this book even notes that we all create unhealthy patterns that we habitually follow believing that we can hide from our pain but that the only true way to release this pain is to feel it.