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Posted by on in Alcoholism

My father was an alcoholic since as long as I can remember and the same goes for my grandfather. After a long battle, I was able to overcome and am now have 8 years of sobriety. But my fathers story is different, because he never took up that battle. He remained an alcoholic till the age of 71. Given the physical toll it took on him, I am surprised he is still alive today; though with some serious health issues. With his decline in health, his doctor approach me to discuss Hospice Care for him. I didn't know what to think, but I started the look for a hospice Colorado Springs, CO. I wanted him to be nearby and I knew he defiantly wouldn't want to leave Colorado Springs. Though I did also look for a hospice of northern Colorado, but that was a bit farther then I was hoping to travel. 

As I continued to search I found it difficult to find a Hospice or Home Health Care that could accommodate my fathers needs as a lifetime alcoholic. Not only was he facing serious health issues, but he still longed for the relief that Alcohol had brought him for decades.  He'd still try to get alcohol into his house whenever possible and it really took a lot of vigilance to keep him off it. I needed a hospice that could really understand his needs and care enough to work with him in a loving way. 

That's when I found SunCrest Home Health and Hospice Colorado Springs. They seemed to know just what to do. Their care for my father has been above and beyond and I have actually seen an improvement in my fathers health both physically and mentally. He seems to speak with more clarity and I believe he is finally realizing that sobriety is a better way of life. 

Despite all of this, I know my father's health will give out sooner than latter, and I am so thankful for the help of SunCrest Hospice Colorado Springs. I wanted to put this out there in-case anyone here on Addiction Land has a loved one needing hospice or home health care. There is quality help out there, even for an old drunk like my dad. If you are not in Colorado, SunCrest also has locations in Denver, Pueblo, Fort Collins, Des Moines, Phoneix, Chicago, and San Jose. I can't speak for these other locations, but if they are anything like the Hospice in Colorado Springs, then they are well worth the look.

Thanks for listening!

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Posted by on in Alcoholism

Step 12 : Having had a Spiritual Awakening we tried to carry this message to alcoholics and practice these principles in all our affairs. In finding the AA Big Book suggested Spiritual Path? I am found. I've been reborn to a whole new attitude and outlook on life itself, not just me and mine. All of it. No longer a theory as it seemed in the earlier Steps, now I am convinced of my Spiritual daily reprieve offered.  My willingness to grow in understanding and effectiveness daily as I live the AA Big Book 12 Steps to the best of my ability. The thought of alcohol is rare, or running away to anything really. I have a new found courage and strength, a self reliance with seemingly infinite coping skills. The selfish need for others to provide emotional security is seen and accepted as a common form of trouble and addressed immediately for the most part. I have a life worth living. I have recovered for today. I pray to continue this way of life for my lifetime, to participate.   I will serve the Spirit of all things and with it's power see myself and the man who suffers in alcoholism. I will continue to watch for my selfishness and self-centeredness, I will not miss it and settle for less today. I will pray to be directed to what my God would have me be. I like this, this is a good way for me. I ask for Spiritual help, speak for myself and take responsibility for my conduct. I am accountable today. This is all I ever imagined. All I saw in others.

 

The Big Book 12 Steps worked! I awoke a new man. I had purpose. I had found validation in the realm of the Spirit. I had survived an adult dose of recovery. A moral detoxification of sorts. I had put down my obsessions with people by picking up the program of recovery suggested as a way out for the hopeless. Seemingly the first thing I had actually ever done right?

 

I was on fire now. Like the man who rises from his hell and is saved by Jesus? You can't tell him anything about anything else but Jesus. Jesus is in the house! It can be annoying. That whole my way or the hi-way thing. I was like this with Big Book 12 Steps initially. A new phase. I couldn't help it, my life had became so good so fast. Self will run riot yet believing with all the work I had done it was impossible to be so extreme again. I was bulletproof? Sure...Yes my first thought was all in AA should have this thing! My first lesson was? NO, the Big Book 12 Steps are not for everyone or not because "I say so" anyway.. Not everyone needs a Spiritual reprieve or even a total reconstruction.. Not everyone needs to root out the flaws in their make up right away in hopes of simply surviving one more day.. Not everyone is beyond human aid. There are many who are able to read or listen, retain and apply suggestion and or direction. Many who make good use of a helping hand in AA, the fellowship of experience strength and hope.

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Posted by on in Alcoholism

Step 8. More willingness. Not a problem. I'm all in.

 

I felt good by now. Maybe because the 4th was behind me? 5th Step was over? Maybe because I was actually changing. I had surrendered myself and there was one huge difference between this day and just a seemingly few days before. I was no longer obsessed! That was it! No more obsession! What a break! I was baffled really at the thought of it all.  Last week I pined for my ex-wife to come back so I could be a whole person believing my only option suicide if she refused and this week? I'm in a good mood and on my way to the Court House to file for divorce. I had seen myself and my conduct, this was so weird.

The day began as usual with asking for guidance from the Higher Power. Direct me to what you would have me be stuff. Then asking for the courage and strength to continue on with my Steps today. Not tomorrow, today. That wasn't even an issue really, the usual procrastination wasn't there. The usual making plans so I didn't have to do anything right now, me. So I could wallow in my delusion, find my security in the familiar. Nope. It was as if I had my whole life ahead of me. The selfishness and fear that had bound me my entire life was well, gone! Would it come back? Would I try to make it come back? I didn't know. I wasn't going to take any chances though, I got right into Step 8.The Big Book suggested we need more action, ok then, more action it is! It said we had a list of people we were willing to make amends to in out 4th Step. Ok, go back to the 4th. It was different now, going back and looking at myself. As if now I had the strength to see myself as I was and then come back where as before what I was like was all I knew. The bondage, the burden of self, the sick feeling of shame and guilt lingering everywhere always.. So I get out the 4th Step. It was still here on the table actually. I take a close look, a review of my 4th..

 

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Posted by on in Alcoholism

They saved the sex conduct part of the 4th Step for last in the Big Book 12 Step format. Probably good reason for that. It said we probably all have sex problems? Go ahead and treat sex as we would any other problem. I couldn't have done this if it came before looking at myself in my resentments or the "fear" part of my 4th Step. I would have questioned what sex has to do with alcoholism? Or anything really?

I'm not going in there? I don't want to see anything buried in there? It doesn't haunt me if I can just stay distracted. Keep the focus on everybody else and their sexual flaws so I never have to see mine. It's just more "I'm bad". I'm bad so my sex conduct is bad. I had my ignorance covered in a thick coat of dysfunction. Self delusion. Everything I didn't know or understand about sex was kept under wraps. Secrets I kept from myself.  Strings attached to everything, I was always loosing control of it all, again mortified at the memory. It would come out in my self centered attitude, my effort to condemn in others what I hid from myself in hopes of overcoming it. This is where I first began to see myself wanting others to pay for how I felt about myself. I'd probably give this a 9 in the inner turmoil scale. It was pretty much always there lurking as a kind of unresolved issue to be kept under wraps. I justified myself with character assassination. Just look at all these moral lepers everywhere. I'm just a selfish alcoholic. I must surely be forgiven. It's everybody else.

 

It was all me now.. The constant fear and tension.  Keeping secrets from myself? Guilt and shame I would remember to forget over and over.. Yes, me. I kept it there, I could not let it go. Reminding myself I am nothing, I will never be anything. No one had to tell me anymore, I believed it. People could not convince me otherwise. Again I saw myself beyond human aid.

 

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Posted by on in Alcoholism

I had been reading my 4th Step for 3 days by now. Every night at 5:00 my Sponsor would roll up the driveway, plow frame clanging. It was winter and the snow was heavy, I'd hear him coming. We'd get down to it right away and wrap up around midnight. Same thing. Prayers, willingness, my 4th Step books open in front of me. And we begin. I read from one book to the other, back and forth. Resentments. Resentments and more resentments. I'm resentful at them usually for some petty reason and the resentment consumes me. I can think of nothing else while those who I am resentful  toward are not even aware of it. All in my head, my crazy head. Selfishness, dishonesty, self-seeking motives, control, over and over. I was making it all happen even though I was convinced the world wasn't treating me right. I believed I was the victim.  I was convinced they had done me wrong and my resentment was totally justified. Everything was an act of betrayal, everything was personal.

 

The self-pity was a huge revelation. The power of feeling sorry for myself. The "if only's". I actually believed I could insert a different outcome, a more suitable arrangement to any situation that wasn't going my way. Yeah well, if only I had money, if only I was better looking, went to better schools, lived a healthier lifestyle, if only I was somebody else? Poor me, show me some attention now as I am the fragile sparrow with the tattered wing. Come into my world and understand my plight so I can have control and feel better. Damn! Talk about an emotional vampire! Incapable of coping with reality I create my own and do my best to bring others into it, make them believers? Everything good is bad because I'm bad. Now that it's all about me? Everything bad is good. What a selfish manipulator. Pathetic really. Hey...when the worlds everything and you're nothing? Everybody's everything and you're not? This makes for a lot of self-pity, lots of self delusion. I was full of self-pity everyday! So, I had no idea what was really going on, full flight from reality as the Book said.

 

Now, there were some big fat justified resentments where I was hurt, blindsided by another who may have been as sick as myself so the resentment did seem justified and it may have been. Hey, life isn't fair right? But when I saw myself in it? How I handled it? It was as if yes they hurt me but then I went ahead and destroyed myself with the resentment. The truth was clear. I could not handle resentment big or small. Coping skills, yeah..I had no coping skills. When I was resentful?  I just came apart. I self destructed daily. It was clear by now I had no other options besides heavy alcohol use, I wasn't going to change. I just had to do my best to shut it all off! The resentments consumed me, bound me tight. I swear, I would make them up sometimes, not understanding how the Book referred to "trains of circumstance". I thought I was creating new resentment when really? I was reliving old hurt, old anger and selfish unresolved pain so I could feel the power, the anger, wallow in the self-pity. That's what resentment was. Re-living..

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