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Posted by on in Alcoholism

Hey..There's nothing I can find wrong with repeating over and over "one day at a time one day at a time". Tomorrow's a mystery, yesterday's history. It's just today 24 hours. One day without one drink. Nothing can happen in a 24 hour period that a drink or drug won't make worse. Whatever works. Before any real 12 Step experience ya do whatever you need to do to get through one day without one drink. Stand on one leg and chant some Eastern religious mantra, steal a car and go to Las Vegas, accept the Lord Jesus into your life, find a new AA girlfriend with decent credit that hasn't dated anyone in your home group....I don't know, fill in the blank yourself.. 

It's just completely overwhelming, old alcoholically fogged feelings are here again as if clear and present danger.  You're new and barely making it to the end of the day with yourself and WHAM! BOOF! ZAP! You are blindsided with a stream of morbid reflection. In an effort to survive the day there's nothing wrong with repeating over and over "thy will be done thy will be done" in a desperate effort to shut off the maniac memory machine and get some sleep. Chosen words to cast out demons? You decide.

We drink for a reason and when we put the booze down the reasons are sometimes blaring! The underlying causes have yet to be addressed.. Like, yeah.. It was a good meeting. Shucking and jiving at the butt can, having a few laughs and drinking coffee, fellowshipping with my AA friends as I pound out meeting after meeting. Life is certainly much better sober but now they've all gone wherever they go and as I settle in to bed for a good nights sleep? I am alone and again in bad company, reminded of how my ex-wife (who I haven't even seen in 10 years)didn't want me around anymore and she was seeing someone else now more responsible than me and of course better in bed. And I can forget about visitation with my daughter as I stand on her doorstep in the freezing rain unwelcome inside as if it's happening right now over and over... Ugh..Thy will be done thy will be done..Huh? Daddy is embarrassed of me as a son? Arrested again! I'm a failure and will never amount to anything? OOH..everybody hates me. I'm a loser. they're all talking behind my back right now probably? thy will be done thy will be done thy will be done.. Sure, that works. I can relate to that whole making it through one more day by the skin of my teeth. I have been there many times.

Then there's "it's one day at a time" but we're obviously all in different days? I could tell myself this when I was resentful toward other AA members or when I just fell off and had no idea what was going on. The best I could seem to do was simply show up. Don't drink go to meetings and ask for help. More than that I just could not do.

 

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Posted by on in Alcoholism

Selfish & self-centered, that’s what we are when we come to AA.  And then I finally admitted to my innermost self that I was an alcoholic, I came to believe that the people in AA were telling me the truth, I made a decision to do what you said you had done, I wrote about my favorite topic – ME, I bored somebody for half a day listening to it, & as a result I’m in a position where all I care about is being of service to God & my fellows.  How powerful is that!  And I think too many people miss it.  It is so incredibly powerful!  Eight & Nine for me are conventional ways of getting rid of conventional guilts, I felt guilty because I WAS guilty.  If you came between me & a drink, I took the drink.  And it wasn’t about saying, “I’m sorry.”  I said “sorry” all my life.  Sorry, sorry, sorry.  Then I would do it again & get caught.  Sorry, sorry, sorry.  And then I’d do it again & get caught.  Sorry, sorry, sorry.  It wasn’t about saying “sorry”, it’s about living my life differently.  I don’t know how, but people in AA do.  And I come here & you share about what it is like, you share your experiences with me about being a mother & a daughter & a sister & a friend & an employee, without picking up a drink.  And you allow me to take your experiences out into the world & live them & they become my experiences.  I am the woman I am this afternoon because of the men & women of Alcoholics Anonymous have shared their experiences with me.  Ten, Eleven, & Twelve are the Steps that keep me in the middle of Alcoholics Anonymous.  Step Ten says that the process is powerful, keep using it.  Keep writing about it & talking about it.  Ask God to remove the defect, make amends if necessary, & then turn your attention towards somebody you can help.  What is it I can do for you, how can I be of service?  It seems to me when I’m focused on MY problem, God can’t do a thing with it.  When I’m focused on YOUR problem, God can come in & take care of mine.  What can I do for you, how can I be of service?  Step Eleven, my prayer in the morning is very simply, “Thy Will be done”.  I’m so naïve that I truly believe that the rest of the day is God’s business.  My job is to not drink, show up, & live life to the fullest; the rest of it is God’s business.  My prayer at night is a little scarier, I offer it to anybody who would like to use it.  My prayer at night is, “Dear God, please have people treat me tomorrow exactly the way I treated people today.”  And I know when I’m going to say that prayer tonight it will hold me in good stead.  I don’t flip people off on the freeway anymore, I still count but I don’t announce the number of items in the “10 item or less” line at the grocery store.  And I don’t live my life so much out of virtue as I do that I’m going to say that prayer tonight.  I challenge you to use it.  I guarantee if you use it for 90 days it will change your life.  And Step Twelve is the greatest gift you’ve ever given me, an opportunity to take a little of my past & give it to another alcoholic, to look into the eyes of another alcoholic & say, “Honey, you don’t have to live that way anymore.  Take my hand, come with me, sit in the middle of Alcoholics Anonymous, COME ALL THE WAY IN & SIT ALL THE WAY DOWN, & you never have to live that way, a day at a time.”

 

Patti O. from Mission Viejo CA

 

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Posted by on in Alcoholism

I recently overheard some great gossip so feeling a tad weak I decided to feed on it and keep it going. An argument between two people setting up the chairs at a local meeting. This wasn't told to me directly, no. I overheard it from someone who overheard it. I guess that would be gossip twice removed or pretty much by the time I repeat it? Lies. The only thing that was the same was there were two guys involved.

I was ready to carry the mess. Hopefully find someone to listen intently to my new version , co-sign me, like me so I can like myself. It was pure checkout line gossip now. Like when you look in the grocery basket and see $200 dollars worth of nothing?  Fear creeps in because all you see worth anything is a $3.00 bag of your favorite cookies that is already open and missing a few, so you can't just get out of line and split. No way to make a run for it without a possible shoplifting arrest and well? You're much too old for that.. So you look for trouble. Trouble is power. Just stand there and crowd the person in front of you with a subtle bump to the back of the ankle so in some way you can make another pay for how you feel.. When they turn and look as if you're going to get a bag of frozen broccoli in the face you smile and apologize. You're now the manipulative weasel. These people got nothing on you. 

 

HEY LOOK! Brad Pitt is losing his kids complete with pictures of the horrific life he leads in his house the size of a Amazon distribution center.. Next paper? A not so shocking front page? Madonna rallies for freedom of speech, teaches F-bombs to 2rd graders in New York. Yikes! Atleast I'm not them!  I wanted to feel better about myself so I read a few paragraphs in hopes of validation through another's grand screw up. It worked. I didn't even want to be Brad Pitt and had a newer softer sympathetic place in my heart for Guy Richie. I  am now feeling fine who I am thank you. Clearly above it all. Everybody is screwed up and I'm ok.

 

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Posted by on in Alcoholism

As and alcoholic, I find it very helpful to serve others. It's almost selfish because, the more service I do, the better I feel about myself. But it also helps me get out of my comfort zone, meet people, make connections, and have experiences. I found out that Hospice companies need volunteers on a regular basis and began volunteering often. It has been one of the most rewarding volunteer services I've very participated in. A hospice volunteer has a real impact on people at a pivotal stage in their lives. A hospice volunteer also has a great impact on the family of the patient in hospice care. 

Things you can do as a hospice volunteer include, conversing, holding the patients hand, listening to their story and advice, play chess, cards, or other such games, and much more. The hospice I volunteer with put out an article highlighting my experience as a hospice volunteer along with a couple of others. Take a look at it if you have the time. I highly recommend it as a service option for any addict. 

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Posted by on in Alcoholism

 It was everywhere I was. ((HELP ME!)) was the message in every bottle sent out from the shores of oblivion. It was in every blame, every angry spew. It wasn't the help I wanted, it wasn't the right kind. The loneliness of extreme self centeredness set in as I waited for someone to save me, make me like them, take me away from me. . Without the booze I was unbearable to be with. To look at, to see myself as I believed others saw me. It was written on every foggy bathroom mirror after my many failed attempts to wash myself clean. Scrub off my addiction. I was dirty, poison.

In the end? Full flight from any reality, a complete delusion took over. I was out of breath, no more visible messages. It was now all in my mind, the mind that could nolonger think... All rational thought gone, images of past hope? The charred words, my voice of reason unrecognizable now, smoldering.  The constant alarm in my head , (BEEP! BEEP! BEEP! ) provided distraction in my chaos.  Why all the stimulus? It's everywhere yet it's never the right kind. My mind spinning out and I am not moving. 

 

I was not coming back this time, I could not come back. I'd been warned too many times, convinced myself and others I was ready to listen and done nothing. Used their words as ammunition against them. This was it, the full tilt hopelessness of untreated alcoholism surrounded me. The drink had become the wrong I could never make right. I couldn't fix this. Nobody could. The powerlessness, the fear, am I going to die today?  I'm afraid to die with my life of unresolved issues hanging over me. Why? I mean really! Why am I like this! Why is this happening to me!

 I'm already dead. Tell me I'm already dead.. Please just let me die. I can't take waiting another day. I get it now, I am alone forever, The trail has gone cold, no ones coming for me. I understand and all I can do is be sorry for what?  I don't even know. But I'm sorry for everything. I cry out in desperation, giving what's left as a sacrifice in frothy emotional appeal! Can anyone hear me! Over here! In the pit of pity!

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