Sunday, April 14, 2013

Franklin Park Conservatory Columbus, Ohio

My family and I just left this amazing place. The exhibits were so beautiful not once did I think of the world outside of that magical place. My worries were dissolved. Seeing beauty always does that for me.

And I even bought a starter bonsai tree, a conifer because I cannot keep the deciduous little trees alive.

Beauty is everywhere, we just need to seek it out. It makes our thoughts beautiful..

Friday, April 5, 2013

Pharmaceutical Companies, Is This The Best You Can Do

Serious guys really. I was going to let this one go without a peep but was just reminded how ridiculous you are when I heard an ad about one of your Low T treatments for Men and noticed the long list of side effects. So basically to feel more like a man for those with Low T you have to risk a multitude of side effects, horrible ones that definitely do not out way the risk. Honestly is this your best?

I just came off a medicine (not Low T, my manhood is not my problem) that was prescribed pre maturely by a doctor that was helping me a few years back. I went to my doctor for anxiety issues and left with an antidepressant. Fast forward four years and six different medicines I can honestly say it was a waste of time and money. I had horrible side effects, my aggression was so bad with one of them that I almost ran someone off the road after they cut me off! I told that to my doctor and she said to stay on it.

Now that I am coming off the medicine I feel like myself again.

I just can't believe that this is the best they can do. So much money is flowing into their pockets they just don't see it.. And don't care. 30 million Americans are on anti-depressants! That is way too many. Lets drop the drugs folks. Lets pick up something else, God! It's the only cure for this craziness!

Check it out. It works.

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Recovering Addict.. love's AA that hates NA

I think hate is too harsh a word but I just wanted to express this and see if anyone else shared my pain. I hate NA. Maybe it is just the groups in me area or that I started back this time around with AA but whenever I go to NA I walk away just regretting ever going. When I walk out of AA I feel so empowered, the planets become aligned, and my life makes sense. With the simple knowing that I am powerless.
One is too many, a thousands never enough..
If you agree with me please share your experience and if you disagree please share that as well.

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Finding My Voice Again

Sometimes I take for granted the ability to share my thoughts and feelings with people. Sometimes I am unable to just because I cannot seem to comprehend them. I just got off a medicine that made it really difficult to share where I was at and for someone who is recovering from drugs and alcohol that just isn't a good thing. I would go to a meeting and when it became my turn to talk would get extremely choked up and would not be able to share anything. Part of that was due to the Wellbutrin that I was on. It was doing a lot of bad things to me. My voice was literally just not there. Anti-depressants really do not work for me. I have tried Zoloft, Prozac, Paxil, and to no avail. None of those medicines made me feel "cured" or "un-depressed". Do I really have depression or do I have something else. I know one thing that I have, an addiction to drugs and alcohol but guess what folks.. I am treating that with the only known medicine on the market. The 12 Steps.

Monday, December 5, 2011

Life isn't about me.. It's about you :)

I have been thinking way too much of myself recently. How I feel about certain situations, How this will benefit me and my family, How much more I can have of so and so, and just a lot more selfish thinking. Oh, one of my favorite ones is the fact that I have to have things go my way at all times. Especially during my time off from work. I have a family so things don't generally go my way very often. I am lucky to get an hour of time to myself. But I am finding out that the more time I spend with the other person, or even dog... that I actually get more time to myself later. If I spend that quality time with the ones I love, I am gifted with time to spend doing the things I must do to stay healthy.

This life was given to me by a power much greater than myself. This life is a gift. I can either treat it like a gift or I can start feeling like shit again. There are two ways to be: selfish or selfless. My goal is to be selfless, by helping others I am helping myself. When I give, I get much more.

I just thought I would share this with you. I haven't written a blog in a while. A lot has happened in my life. The good and the bad but mostly good. Just grateful to be here on this journey. Grateful that I am able to use my mind and my spirit for the good and not the darkness. Nameste :)

Monday, July 4, 2011

Today I had a very nice conversation with my ex-wife. She sent me a text to wish me a happy 4th of July. I thought that was very nice. I find it so amazing that we can be civil toward eachother. There is a God folks. Us being friendly to eachother is proof.

Holding resentments towards people is not good. If you are trying to live clean and or sober I just cannot endorse holding onto them. I personally have to let it go. On a daily basis I let things go, especially the small stuff because it just isn't important enough to get between me and my Higher Powers. I am riding on a spiritual high made possible by right thinking, right action, right forgiveness and right practice.

Being right with Spirit takes time and it takes work. Nothing worthwhile can be achieved in one day, one week or even one months. This is a journey. A quest for enlightened living. Living in the light and exposing darkness to that light.

I wish you only the best fellow traveler. Keep your heart, eyes and mind open to compassion. I love you.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Zen Buddha

I have to take a deep breath now and then to remind myself that I am human. So human sometimes its not funny. Monkey mind was so powerful, and still can be that I need mindfulness to help silence him.

For this moment I feel very blessed to practice Buddhism.

Friday, October 22, 2010

my blogs get sent to my google mailbox addresses

I completely forgot that my address book received a free copy of my rant that i just posted this week. now i kind of feel embarassed because it was completely off the charts. lol. whoa! good thing this is progress not perfection.

oh and just an update, me and that associate squashed the beef. he is a good worker again and just needed a push in the right direction. my back hurts from lifting 200 pound pool tables on an unrelated front.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

am i allowed to have bad days??

I am being serious. Is it appropriate for me to have bad days? Is it proper for me to have doubts? Would you be mad if I told you that I didn't trust my pregnant girlfriend? Would these omissions make you see me as a bad or weak person?

Yesterday was a disaster of a day. The morning seemed great. I went to my fellowships PO Box at the post and processed some of our mail. Got to see a friend's son, Nick, interact with our puppy named Molly. Read a few pages of "World Without End" by Ken Follett, then got ready for work.

Ahhh... work. I just recently started a new position at my company. Receiving Lead. I now have a new boss. I now have new associates that don't know me or my leadership style. Right off the bat I recognized which associates I could count on to get the job done, with little motivation from me, and the ones that would need their hands held while doing their jobs.

At my place of employement we call the associates that struggle to get their jobs done the biggest "opportunities". One of my BO's (for short) did something last night that left a sour taste in my mouth. Well before I go any further I think I should mention that during my last day on my last assignment as softlines lead, this BO came up to me and I noticed that he had an attitude towards me. This caught me off guard and set off all kinds of red flags, bells and whistles, and alarms that this gentleman was going to be a handfull.

Now back to last night. Last night was one of the nights that we receive a truck. It is a very busy night and it was the first truck that I had ever worked. I had a little apprehension going into it. So when I first get to work I ask two of my associates if they would care to join me for a cigarette (which i shouldn't be smoking I know.. because I quit a year and a half ago.. so sue me). They abliged. We get back and I notice that my BO (Biggest Opportunity) displays his very colorful attitude and blatant dislike for me and my leadership role. It was very uneeded.

The night goes on, and we take two more smoke breaks during the processing of the truck. Which was a mistake.. I realize this but my whole point is to build a rapore with my two best workers and I don't feel like I need to explain myself to my "biggest opportunity" and ask for his permission to have a cigarette.

BO was not happy, and he took it upon himself to inform one of my fellow managers in another department that we had taken too many smoke breaks. I didn't find out about his defiance until I checked in with the assistant store manager to see if we could stay until 2030 hours to finish as much as possible. She told me that there was a complaint about our smoking. Guess who? My BO.

I calmly walk over to where he is sitting down.. not sure why he was doing that in the first place. I say, "Hey _____, can you please tell me why you felt the need to go behind my back and tell another manager about our smoking, when you know we had a talk about your cell phone use when you brought this up to me earlier?" See we had already had a discussion about this between the two of us, and I thought I made it clear that he shouldn't be worrying about what I do when he is standing around on his phone.

Immediately this man start to yell and right then I knew it wasn't going to end well. I ask him three or four times to "lower his voice". I tell him to not speak to me that way. Finally when he is just going to keep yelling, I yell back. Can you guess why? Because I am the boss of him. I am his superior. Standing behind me were two of my best workers. The guys that I can rely on to get the job done! I was trying to save face and basically let this BO know who is in charge. He must figure this out soon. His job literally depends on it.

I noticed something during our little showdown...LOL because that is what it was, a gunslinging showdown.. a whos the big dick.. guess what..?.. I AM. I noticed that he mentioned he was having a tough time at home. He seemed to be taking out all his frustrations on me. I understand tough times. I've been through them for longer than I care to admit to myself sometimes. I get it. Its okay to be in pain. Its okay to hurt. But, whats not okay is to take it out on your boss. Trust me I know. I have done it. Its not good to bite the hand that feeds you. The consequences are not very favorable to the biter.

If I could have a re-do on last night I would have kept my cool during our tirade. I would not have yelled back at him. I would have just skipped right to the part where I said, "Go Home!" I would have just let it go and not asked why he went behind my back. I felt very disrespected. I feel very disrespected.

I know this post hasn't been the brightest of the bunch. I just don't feel very bright and cheery right now. I kind of feel like climbing into a hole in the ground and never coming out. But on the other side, I want to do well. I want to recognize the hard work that I have put into my personal, professional, and spiritual life. I am a good person. I am a caring person. I love myself for who I am and no matter what my higher power loves me too.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

working an honest program..

I sit here at a kiosk in a public library right down the street from my apartment I share with a beautiful, and pregnant girlfriend. For some reason I am having a difficult time trying to figure out what to write to you about. Do I want to talk about how I stuck my neck out for a young girl I saw get punched in the face by her abusive boyfriend, two weeks ago? Do I talk about what living with a pregnant woman is like? Should I talk about how I feel about sponsoring alcoholics in a program of recovery? All those things would be wonderful things to talk about. But I thought of something much better to talk about... MY PROGRAM.

The program that I try to work has been gaining steam for the past few months. Ever since I decided that I didn't want to live like a mushroom, growing in the dark on a big pile of shit. That is no fun. If you know what I am talking about you will quite possibly agree with me.

I was sitting in a meeting in a neighboring town and just gave up trying to run the show. I was tired.. My girlfriend was probably tired, but she is tired anyways because she is pregnant. I made the decision to turn my will and my life over to the care of my higher power as I understand him/her/it. Some days I forget that I gave my program up to a creative intelligence that is much greater than me, and try to take the reins back.. but days like today I take great satisfaction in the fact that I can flow with the current of life instead of struggling against its endless and powerful flowing energy.

I am glad I am not the all knowing, all seeing creative energy driving all living and non-living beings in this realm. Can you imagine how tired I would be then? I don't even want to think about it.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

R. Lee Ermey signed my USMC Honor Courage Committment card

Just trying to get a feel for how much this autograph would be worth.. I am not interested in selling, just want to know if keeping it on my countertop is a safe place for it or if I would need to put it in a safe, lockbox, etc.

Monday, May 10, 2010

old Blog Posts.

I was just taking a look at some of my old blop posts and think some of them are pretty silly. Especially the one about boycott kanye west. Really? I fell for that one hook, line, and sinker. The whole thing was probably planned anyways. Publicity stunt. Old blog posts are a good reminder on how things are progressing in my life. I really do not care about that kind of stuff anymore. And if I did I don't think I would need to write about it in a blog post.

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Why I Stay Busy

Why do I stay busy? And why do I feel like I need to do everything all at once? I have been staying really busy recently. Getting things done for once. When I first started down this path of sobriety I sure as heck didn't want to stay busy but somebody once told me that I should get busy living, or get busy dying. Even right now this very instant I feel like I should be doing something more productive like finishing the million books that I need to finish. Maybe I should try to go a whole day without doing anything. Maybe I should try to go a whole day without speaking to anyone. Can it be done? Should it be done? I have always been told that idle time is the devils play thing but maybe I can just practice Not-Doing for a little while so I can get back on track.

I am at a point in my sobriety that I am fully aware of the importance of going to meetings, calling your sponsor, calling another drunk (running buddy), doing something compassionate for another person, staying fit spiritually...mentally...and physically. Also, rule# 62 is a biggun.

For the rest of the night I am just going to take it easy. My girlfriend is coming over tonight and we are just going to take it easy. Watch a movie. And just enjoy eachothers company. The cool thing about her is that she is not an alcoholic or an addict. She supports my program too. I love this one a lot.

Great day to be alive and sober. I pass.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

wrote a blog then i got bombed back to prague.
came with such a quickness you had to pull down the afterburner element,
from my flux time consortium.

Friday, April 2, 2010

Met Someone New

A few weeks ago I was invited to go out for lunch with a couple colleagues from work. When first asked to go I quickly made up an excuse to why I would not be able to. I used the old, 'don't want to be late for work' excuse. But then at the last minute I changed my mind and decided to just do it. This girl that I was interested in was going and there was also something telling me that I needed to get off my ass and just go.

I am not usually the type to see anyone outside of work. But something was telling me to just get to know this girl. She is so pretty, so smart, so kind and I think is just a good person deep down.

Lunch was great and a day later I asked if she would like to go to the movies with me. She said yes. So for our first date we went to see Shutter Island. Very freaky movie but I thought it was edited to the highest visual standard possible. The whole first date thing is nerve racking and I don't think I was really paying any attention to the movie. My main objective was so hold her hand and maybe give her a kiss on the cheek. But for the life of me I could not build up enough courage.

I have never been in a relationship with a woman like this. She has never done drugs and doesn't have a problem with alcohol. She rides horses and likes the outdoors. She has the kindest heart and just has the most amazing spirit. A few months back I just gave up my search for a possible girlfriend/friend. I just decided that if something was supposed to happen then it definitely won't be on my time table. And I was right. Right when I decided to stop looking so hard and stop trying to make myself seem so available or desperate, she came into my life. What a gift sobriety has been.

One of the biggest and best things about my life now is that I don't have to abuse women. Nowhere does it say that I am required to control her or take advantage of her good nature. It isn't written anywhere that I am required to hit, slap, push, abuse, belittle, antagonize, diminish, punish, devastate, persecute, reprimand, etc etc etc. My job is to be a good man and be a good person to her. My job is to stay sober one day at a time. She will only see the sober Chris. Just for today. She will not have to deal with the manipulative prick of my past. Thank goodness.

God really is good! He/She never stops amazing me. The littlest thing is the biggest blessing.

नामस ऑफ़ प्रोदुसर्स ठाट इ like

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Saturday, February 20, 2010

Palmolive Original brings back memories of childhood. They didn't have all the fragrances they have now, back in the crazy 80's.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

The only time in which Negative means something good!:)

Yesterday was a rough day. I experienced such a sweeping range of emotions. From being the saddest I could be, to the happiest I could hope to be. I found out that I do not have HIV/AIDS yesterday. The thought of having an auto-immune disease is enough to keep you up at night. It was affecting every aspect of my life. These "big" things never just affect one aspect, or one facet, but all angles are tested.

I also found out yesterday that I have a really nice boss. She is such a sweet heart and actually does have a heart. She told me that I should have let her know what was going on with me. That I should have just taken the day off. Looking back I completely agree. Everyone was pissing me off yesterday. For one thing or another. I just thought it was everyone else but really it was me. It always starts with me.

From now on I am going to try to trust my boss and the people I work with. I guess I am just afraid that they are going to use the information against me in some way. Maybe try to get me fired or demoted. Or just something negative.

For now I am off to the gym to work my butt off on the treadmill. Later

Monday, February 15, 2010

My Latest

Well I am sure you are all thinking the same thing, where the f*** have you been Chris? Are you still sober? The answer to the second question is, Yes I am still sober. Thanks be to God. The answer to the first question is, I have been around. I have been living my life. I have been making choices. Healthy ones, and even a couple bad ones. I have been in a relationship with another woman. The relationship didn't really work out to well. It is what it is. I am just not ready to be in a relationship. And that is okay. Its okay to lose. Just not to lose your sobriety, your life, your freedom, and even your passion or joy. Can you imagine losing any one of those things. What if you lost your sobriety after 11 months of hard work? Wouldn't that be just the hardest thing to deal with? I don't think I would make it back. I would be so ashamed. That thought scares the crap out of me. My goal in life is to die sober. To die with some dignity. And to go out with grace. Not to be a burden or someone you wish would just die already. Not that pain in the ass person you would love to see suffer. Nope, not me. Not anymore.

So I have a few goals for this year. I was just promoted at Sears to manager. I am so grateful for that one. Amazing. They have been so damn good to me its not even funny. I love my job. I love where I am at right now. I love being sober and I just love myself. In a good way. I have never loved myself for who I am until very recently. There isn't anything wrong with loving yourself. Nothing at all. I am learning to gather strength from my choices. I am learning to love people for who they are and to try to look past their shortcomings because that's not who they really are. Deep down I know everyone has a good heart. Sometimes it is just hard for people to access it.

I was in a confrontation with a friend yesterday. And it hurt me. I got hurt from what this person did to me. It wasn't very nice. But I finally got to see what it looks like when somebody acts like a complete ass. It was a valuable learning experience. It happened for a reason. Or at least I keep telling myself that. Giving someone the benefit of the doubt is really a big concept for me. I have been trained to not think or feel, but to just react and to kill. To make sure whatever I am up against doesn't just fall to the ground but doesn't have the opportunity to get back up. So when somebody I trust acts in a way that could be considered rude or offensive, my natural reaction is to attack. My instincts kicked in yesterday and I almost lost my control. The universe didn't make it so. Nothing happened. Just some negative energy getting thrown around. I apologized already. And that is really all that matters to me. Maybe someday we can be friends again, but if what happened yesterday happens again, I might have to go Marine on you buddy. Rah!

Monday, November 16, 2009

Getting Too Close To The Source

Something inside me tells me to live dangerously. What is that? Do I like to be in danger? Do I like problems? Am I addicted to drama? I am beginning to think that I need to take better care of myself....again? Before I turn this into a self- bashing session I need to recognize a few of my achievements. First of those being that I have eight months of consecutive sobriety today. Second, that I talked with a complete stranger last night about a job he could get if he really wanted to. The man was talking in a meeting about not having a job and he was afraid of becoming homeless so i went up to him after the meeting and said of knew of a place that was hiring for sure. Then I realized why he was having such a hard time with finding a job. He wasn't the sanest man I have ever met, but he was also not the most insane. One year ago today I still hadn't ran my 2007 into the ground on my way to meet my illusive dope dealer. And third, I was at work last week and was in a really good mood. I saw a roach on the ground and decided that I didn't want a customer to see it. I also didn't want to kill the little guy and actually felt compassion for him/her. So I scooped him or her up in a piece of register tape and proceeded to carry the little guy/gal outside.

I can do some good in this world no matter how small it seems at the time. Now what was the original topic of this blog?

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Please Boycott Kanye West

Really? Did he really do that? His behavior is leading me to believe that he is on way more drugs than he needs to be. Did he add crack cocaine to the list of drugs he is currently on? This is an outrage and I hope he loses even more sponsors for opening his big mouth this time. I can understand why he said what he did about George Bush, but Taylor Swift didn't deserve this. I don't listen to her music but I think I am going to start.

I am sending "The College Dropout" and "Late Registration" back to his record label. I don't even care about the money I wasted on him. What I do care about is the time and energy I wasted listening to his rubbish. Apparently he is a racist and finally showed his true colors on national television. I know he has the right to exercise free speech, but some things need to be left unsaid. Kanye West, if you are reading this, I want you to know that I was a fan. I was a supporter of yours, even though I am white and you probably don't even like me because of the color of my skin. Please understand that I am not a racist, even if you are. And I don't put up or tolerate your hate. I wish many more people would send your cd's back to you. You don't deserve our attention. I pray for you Kanye. For God to lift the hate from your heart, and for him to lift you up in his grace.

God Bless You All.....even Kanye West.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

My Blog Counter

I just noticed that my blog counter is at like 11,900 views. I don't really know what that means. A couple days ago it was only at 200. Why did it jump up to this number? If anyone knows why it is so please let me know.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Am I Doing Enough

Sometimes I sit here and wonder if I am doing enough in my life. Sometimes I doubt I am truly living the way my higher power wants me to. Sometimes I even doubt if I should stay sober. A voice inside my head was telling me horrible things yesterday. Things like, "You are a loser", and "Nobody really likes you, they just feel sorry for you", and "You will never succeed". What do you say to that?

I have been a good friend of Bill W.'s for 5 months 1 week and I still get weirded out by some of the things people do. Try not to take their inventory Chris! I did my 6th step last Sunday with my sponsor just before a speaker meeting that I chair. It was nice but we didn't leave enough time to do my 7th step. That is my higher power telling me that I need to spend more time on it.

I like the saying, "If you aren't working on your recovery, you are working on your relapse." That rings true for me. If someone asks you what step you are on and you have to think about it then you should probably check yourself. It is really easy to become complacent.

In reality, I am doing a lot. My brain doesn’t always recognize my efforts and that little voice speaks to me so loud, almost like it has a mega-phone right to my inner ear. I choose not to listen all the time but every now and then it is a struggle. I took a nice ride on the pink cloud but eventually had to come down and do the work. They call where I am at, ‘The Wall’. When you hit the wall it is important to have strong recovery, strong ‘mooring lines’ so you don’t let yourself drift away. My ‘mooring lines’ are: service work, steps, daily meetings, my higher power, reading, doing things even when I don’t want to, and the Fellowship.

They say we are granted a daily reprieve from the obsession to drink/drug. Just as long as I do the work……daily!

Monday, July 6, 2009

Monday Update

I took this picture the other day so I could use it for an avatar on an on-line recovery site. A couple weeks ago I was looking through some old pictures and found one that I took of myself when I hadn't slept in three or fours day. It shocked me to see myself look so destroyed. My face was gray and my eyes were lifeless. I looked like a zombie. During that time I was serving in the Marine Corps and finally understand why my career came to an end. The last thing my Staff Sergeant told me was to do something with my life. I shook his hand and said something like, don't worry about me staff sergeant...I will be just fine. Boy was I in for a treat.

Today when someone asks how I am doing I don't say I am fine because we all know what that really means. Today I answer with, I am doing great or I am just amazed at how good life can be when you work on it.

May God bless all of you, my dearest friends.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Dealing With Negative Personalities

What do you do when there is someone in your life that tries to bring you down to their level every chance they get? Do you play into their negativity or do you rise above?

I am dealing with life on life's terms these days. My happiness is contingent on my sobriety and my ability to work on my disease of addiction. If life is lacking then it most certainly has to do with something I am putting off or avoiding. This time around I have jumped into the program with vigor or as they say, jumped into the middle of the boat. The issues I deal with on a daily basis are much easier to process now that they don't involve using and/or drinking. Many problems came out of that lifestyle. Many triumphs are coming out of this sober lifestyle. Many friendships, insights, spiritual moments, quiet moments, happy and sad moments, and genuine life moments are streaming through my soul today. I am touched by the little things and don't take my life or my blessings for granted. I am sober by God's grace and love. And my side of the street is clean and is in a constant flux of repair and change.

As hard as I work on my spiritual connection, the wind is taken from my sail time and again. I have always had to deal with people trying to put my light out, it has been happening since I was a child. Why do they have to bring me down? Why is it so important for them to make me feel like they do? Trust me; I used to feel worse than you did. If someone was in high spirits I would do things to bring them back down to earth. Nasty things. Things I wouldn't want done to me today. Things I don't accept any longer in my life. I treat people how I want to be treated. My grandfather, may you rest in peace, taught me that proverb when I was just old enough to remember. It is a simple lesson and works when you work it.

If someone steps over my boundaries, I try to let them know about it. I talk to them in a nice way, instead of getting violent and violating their space. I explain that they are only hurting themselves by extending hatred and resentment my way. When I get mean looks, just got one this morning at my home-group, I just smile back at them and give them a little nod. Just letting them know that it really doesn't affect me the way they want it to. I decide who gets to make me feel happy or sad. I have control and power over the way I feel, thank God. Can you imagine if other people could control how you felt? I don't think any of us would have gotten sober.

In reading this, I hope you learned that you decide how you feel and nobody else. We are all children of God, or the Universe and we are one. Have a blessed life and a blessed sober day!

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Sharing is Caring

On June 14th I will be celebrating my 90th day of consecutive sobriety. To me this is no small feat. If you aren't familiar with the world of 12-step recovery this might sound like no big deal. When I hear non-addicts/alcoholics utter doubtful phrases like, "What is so special about a sobriety date anyways", or "why can't you just stop on your own", or "do you still need to goto thosemeetings", my heart sinks a little. The wind is temporary taken from my sail. I force myself to be reminded that not everyone has the same self-awareness and perception as I strive to possess. To be patient and to not be so quick to judge or anger.

"What is so special about a sobriety date anyways?" To this I would say, it's special for many reasons. For too long I was trapped within the confines of my disease. It never let me out to truly see the blessings all around me. In the first month of my new sober life, everything was a struggle. My emotions were like a house of cards. If someone said one wrong thing to me I was either very angry or very sad. I would announce my days clean every single morning at my homegroup, and the people would say...keep coming back. I kept coming back and kept coming back. We celebrate sobriety because we celebrate life. Our achievements are so important because we have come so far and are not slaves to a chemical any longer. We are all walking miracles.

"Why can't you just stop on your own?" Just this morning at my 7:15am homegroup meeting, a woman that is new to the program had just announced to the group that she was changing her sobriety date to last weekend. She had relapsed on O'Douls, which technically has alcohol in it. I applaud her honesty. I talked to her before the meeting because I noticed that she was crying and asked what was wrong. She said that someone explained to her that she should admit that she had relapsed and get honest. She didn't like this too much at all. So she spoke up about her discomfort during our group discussion and explained that she was proud of the time she put together and that it was from her own self will. Her own self will! In my mind I automatically said the phrase, 'more will be revealed. It seemed to me that my own will got me in so much trouble and that it wasn't until I admitted defeat that I finally got sober. I remember the moment when I was ready to accept Gods will for me. I was sitting in my garage, dope sick and tired of it all, when I looked up and asked for His help. I pleaded with Him and said I was done running the show. I believe that he answered me that day and has every day since. Putting my trust in a Power greater than myself simplifies my life beautifully. If something is in my control to fix or do I don't hesitate to do it. I thought early on that God would take care of everything, but I actually had to do some of the work. Who would have thought;)

"Do I still need to goto those meetings?" The answer to that one is a big YES. This time around I was successful with doing 90 meetings in 90 days. And without having a car. If I had my own transportation I would have been able to do many more. My favorite homegroup, yes I have more than one, is filled with people that would give me the shirts off their backs. I have noticed that they keep showing up everyday, even after they have reached 20 years of living a joyous sober life. The old-timers have so much knowledge and wisdom, not just about sobriety but life in general. I am so fortunate to have these literal 'pearls of wisdom' in my life today. A man with 23 years has been a really good friend to me. Especially early on when I was so shy and didn't know if I should even be in the rooms. His kindness made me want to come back. His gentle and caring nature made me feel welcome when I felt as if I would break down and cry at the slightest suggestion. It is a pleasure to surround myself with people that love life and want to continue to learn and grow. If people only knew what Alcoholics Anonymous was really about; I think they would want to go.

If you could see me as I was just a year ago I think you would be amazed by my transformation. When I look through old photo albums that display my old self, I almost have to say the serenity prayer. I don't like seeing myself with lifeless eyes and gray colored skin. Sure it shows me how I've progressed but it's hard to believe that God gave all of this to me unconditonally. He loves everyone, no more no less.

I know we haven't met but that doesn't mean I don't care for you. Quite the opposite. You are the most important person in my life, the ones I haven't met. Have a blessed day and please be kind to all you meet.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

When will it be enough?

I follow closely to my own program and try to not take other people's inventories but something has been on my mind recently. About a month ago a young couple new to AA started going to meetings with me. One of them did some time at a treatment community I had mentioned in a previous blog titled, "Me Experience, Strength and Hope at West Central CF." They were nice enough to take me to a couple meetings and I really enjoyed getting to know them. They were engaged to be married and I thought this was all very positive. Then all of a sudden the girl started calling me and telling me how unhappy she has been with her future husband and how she wanted to call the whole thing off. She also let me know that she has been going out to bars and that she didn't think she had a drinking problem. I was shocked, to say the least. I thought they were committed to recovery. About a week later I was on her Facebook profile and I saw *recent pictures of them both at a bar, getting drunk....real good and drunk.

This saddens me. I perceived them differently than they really are. It saddens me because I thought they would be saving themselves from the pain and self-torture I endured from the continued drinking. I am about eight years older than them and like them I first started going to meetings at the young age of 22.

What lesson(s) is to be learned here? Should I be more careful about the people I allow in my life? Should I reach out my hand to help them? One thing that is clear is the need to pray for them both. The only thing they are going to find while drinking and drugging is pain and suffering. I thought they wanted to save themselves but it is their choice and it is their destiny to find this thing out for themselves.