I Love To Sing
I have a very dear friend who struggles with putting the bottle down for good. We were at dinner the other night and she asked if she could share her journey with me in writing. I have always been a believer in writing about your feelings, it is so healing in so many ways. I am honored to be able to share her words with you. I look forward to many, many more words from her that I will share. I mean, isn't this what it is all about.....sharing and helping one another stay strong and learn to Let Go. Be.
A Let Go. Be Friend shares.....
I love to sing. I love to write. I love to drink. I love my family. I miss my brother. These are the facts I wake up with every day. I start and end each day by kissing the small urn of ashes I have of my brother. And I ache. And I want to drink. Not right then. But at some point I will. Or, if it's night, perhaps I did.
I have been blessed by many things in my life. I have taken many for granted. I still do. I'm human after all. One thing I don't take for granted is the mere fact that I am an alcoholic. I don't think I ever have.
Many will argue that point with me. That's ok. I understand why.
I feel like I should explain that, then I rethink that and I simply have decided to let my journey and the documentation I want to do of it, explain it for me.
I like to call my situation "discovering not recovering". Because I know each day I will discover something about myself by this "blessing" I inherited. So please, indulge me as I share with you my discovery of my alcoholism and the struggles I know we all deal with.
I am a third generation alcoholic. Sometimes I feel like I should introduce myself as Marcy the 3rd because of that. That's my odd sense of humor. I'm afraid you will have to deal with that throughout my writing. Please allow my WIT to accompany us on this journey together. And by the way, thank you for granting me an audience.
I could go way back in my life and search for a starting point but for now, I would simply like to give you some surface information.
I am a forty-eight year old woman. I'm not outstanding for any reason. I am not famous nor is it of any interest to me to become such. The foot print I want to leave in life is simply that, well, is just that I was blessed enough to have a footprint.
I lost my brother about 18 months ago. Now I love all of my family with every ounce of my being. But this man, I called him Welby, well, he truly was like a soulmate to me. People often thought we were twins or acted like an old married couple. It was true. We were. Then life happened and I lost him.
The reason I tell you this is because I learned a very valuable lesson from that loss. I learned that I may be able to generally empathize with people who have gone through loss but that I would never understand their loss. No loss is the same. Neither is any alcoholic. I also learned that in that loss comes what I was told, a "new normal". Giving up any substance is a loss I can empathize with but I am not dealing with your loss, as you are not mine. We are simply now walking our "new normal" Maybe we will walk it together. Maybe not. But we do share that same sentiment.
As I said. I love to sing. If you will once again permit me to invite you along, I will share some songs with you that for one reason or another, come to mind as I take my steps of "discovery".
Today's song is by Hall and Oates. "She's gone". The whole song doesn't apply but even in just the title, I am reminded that the person that I was before the loss of my brother is gone. As is the woman I was before I decided that perhaps I should start a journey of sobriety.
I know that the first step is admitting you are powerless over alcohol. To a degree I agree. But I also think the fact I made a choice by my own volition to seek help does give me a certain amount of power. This does not make me better than anyone else. This is simply my way of viewing my journey. I find that often times knowing I only have control over myself and my actions, is powerful in its own right.
I went to a meeting last night for the first time in years. I went with a woman I have loved and respected for years. She doesn't judge. She simply encourages me. She makes me feel that if I slip, I have the power to get back up. That kind of unconditional love is something I have often taken for granted in my life by others. I won't do that this time.
I will find power in that love and I will not be afraid of my imperfections in it. Thank you Jodi. For loving me as I am and allowing me to know I am "safe" no matter what I do.
Truth is, there is an unopened beer in front of me. I may or may not open it. Either way, I am "discovering" and I am loved.
Until next time...as my brother often said of his poor health. I never ask God "why me? I simply ask him why not me"?
Why not me? Why not us? Why not now? Why not just let go be?
Recovery Is a Learning Process
Recovery is about learning to love and value yourself enough to stop destroying yourself. It's about learning to change your mind and your heart. It's about forgiving yourself and others. It's about letting go of the shame and learing to accept your true self.
Recovery is about letting go of the lofty expectations of perfection that you have placed upon yourself and others. It's learning to love and accept yourself and others unconditionally.
Recovery is about learning to use your anger as the fuel to create something good, rather than denying it our holding it inside until you self-destruct or strike out at another.
Recovery is about learning that you have a choice: You can choose to be hopeful rather than hopeless; you can choose to act from faith rather than react from fear; and you can choose to enjoy life rather than merely survive it. Donna Newman
To My Dear Friend in the Woods.....
My Dear Readers, this blog goes out to a dear friend who is homeless and she is feeling as if it is her against the world. She says she is tired and has no hope, and I get that feeling. I get it because I was there, like many of us. Our bottoms look different but at that bottom we all know the helplessness we had felt. That feeling isn't different at any bottom. It was in early sobriety when I heard someone say "you never have to be here again"! I knew what they meant but at that moment didn't realize what really needed to change in me to create never having to be at that low bottom again. I must admit, I have hit two bottoms in my life, the first one being my sober bottom which created financial, emotional, spiritual ruins and the second one was hitting my emotional bottom. The emotional bottom I have to say was the hardest and the best bottom I ever hit in my life. Why? Because I didn't have alcohol to fall back on to help ease the emotional pain, I had to sit in it and choose to learn and grow from it. But, most importantly, I went back to the basics of what I learned from my sober bottom and that was I am not alone and I can ask for help. But here is the key, you have to be willing to listen and take suggestions and act on those suggestions. The people I asked for help had been exactly where I was in my emotional bottom and they came out on the other side of it and I had the willingness to listen to them. I knew deep down, I still had a great deal of growing to do and I needed more help than just my friends. This is when I went into see a therapist and in October, I will have been with my therapist for a year. I kept hanging onto things in my life that were survival mechanisms that were no longer working for me. Actually, they were causing me self destruction and the thinking that I was alone and didn't need anyone to help me. I wasn't able to truly love another they way we are meant to love another.
I am the type of person who wants to help people and my friend who is homeless, living in the woods right now but, I realized my help was only enabling her from her bottom and when you hit a bottom, you have two directions you can take, you can start climbing out or you can keep digging yourself further and further into the dark hole. I had to detach with love tonight and I must say it is breaking my heart knowing she is making choices that keep her alone and a feeling of helplessness. We are only helplessness if we choose to be. I talked to her briefly as she was gathering up warmer clothes and blankets for the evening in the woods. She is scared and I don't blame her for being scared. If she makes the decision to start climbing out of her bottom all she has to do is reach out and grab for the love of her friends and God and hands will reach back and help her climb up. But once she grabs for those hands she needs to trust in what is put in front of her from the people who love her and only want the best for her. Which means, she needs to change her thinking because it is her thinking that continues to take her down. You know, she knows best, fights all the suggestions and help and stays stuck in what she thinks is best for her. At this stage of her life, I hope she finds the willingness to change her way of thinking. I had that barrier up, thinking that I had to handled everything and saw the world and people against me. Thinking that nobody truly understands what is best for me. Wow.....that thinking kept me sick and knee deep in my alcoholism. Actually, my alcoholism liked me feeling sorry for myself, because the drink was the solution. And playing the victim gave me more power to stay sick and drink. My dear friend sleeping in the woods, I hope you log into a computer at the library and read my words that you can empower yourself to start living again. The day you make the decision to change your circumstances, you will find the empowerment within you. It will not be an easy road but nothing worth having is ever easy. But, I promise you if you stay committed to change, one day at a time, you will find yourself feeling love once again. You will begin to see the world differently. Embrace the universe and the love that surrounds you. It is every where if you just stay out of the "victim" mode to see it. When we are in the victim mode, everything is about "us" and we have no room to see things differently. I know her God is the 'Summit" and I hope she reaches her hand to her "Summit" and for the willingness and guidance to help her through this difficult time. And find gratitude for the little things. For example, the people in her life that love her and want her to find the love within herself to fight for a brighter tomorrow. It is in all of us and it is in these difficult times we have the power to see how strong we really are. She is the only one with the help of her "summit" who can guide her from the bottom she is in.
Each day on my bike rides, I always pray for her to find the willingness to change, accept and take responsibility for where she is in this moment. I know from experience the day I accepted and took responsibility for my life is the day I found the inner strength to make things different. I could no longer feel sorry for myself for losing everything I had worked for, I knew that I am right where I am for a reason. And in that moment, I knew a huge lesson was right in front of me and for the first time, I wanted to truly learn from it. Because, someone said, "you never have to be here again".
I love you my dear friend in the woods...................We are all here waiting on you to find the willingness to change from being a victim to finding the beautiful person we see and know has the potential to do and be whatever she wants to create.
Let Go.Be in the Business World
I am faced with a situation in business right now that would have had me drinking 6 years ago. This would of given me the "right" to drink. I would of been saying "if you had my problems you would drink too". I would have had the justification to drink. I am faced with the potential of losing a major new lease. I brought an out of state company into the area to partner up with me on new opportunities. To make a very long story short, they came back into town, behind my back and began the process of jumping leases I was already in negotiation with. They would of never known about it if I had not shared with them. First, shame on me for not getting a non-compete signed, something in writing that they could not go after projects I was in negotiation with. I forget that corporate america is cut throat and have big money to throw at clients that I can't afford. I forget that corporate america doesn't live by the same philosophy as I do. They have flat out called me a liar to my prospects and are fighting me extremely hard on gaining this lease over me. At first, I was extremely upset but, I realized I can't control people or situations, all I have control over are my actions. Their behavior can not change my behavior on how I conduct my business. What I can do is stay on track on how I want to move forward in my business and my business relationships are based on integrity, doing the next right thing and being the person I can be proud of. If I lose the business deal, I lose the business deal and I have to trust that the universe has a more solid business relationship out there for me. I learned a valuable lesson and moving forward I will not be in this situation again, I will protect all my hard work and have a letter of non-compete signed if I ever have another conversation about business I am working on. See, if what I was working on wasn't valuable, this company wouldn't of went behind my back to steal it away. I don't want to be the person who doesn't trust others, I just need to be a person who protects what she has worked on. And, I don't want to be the person who reacts in a bad way regarding this particular situation. I believe in solid business relationships, and the business relationships I so desire are based on doing what is in the best interest of my client and for my company, a true win-win approach. In return, I went back to the drawing table and came up with different terms, this is the best I can do. If the deal goes to my competition, I have to accept it and move on. I have to feel good about my actions in the process and never compromise my integrity to get a deal. My part in this entire situation is I did not protect my business and if I lose the deal, I had a part in losing the deal.
I will not fill my heart with anger over this, I will not allow their actions to fuel negative actions from within. I know the truth, and I do not have to prove my truth to others. I am able to let go.be regarding the situation and move beyond this bump in the road. At the end of the day, I have to live with myself.
Didn't hit the pause button.
I know you will be able to relate to this story on behalf of my actions. Yesterday morning, I woke up and grabbed my iphone to check on the local news in Ann Arbor. A certain headline reached out and caught my attention and by the time I was done reading the article, I was furious. The article was personal to things going on in our recovery community and a statement was made my my last partner's ex-girlfriend. Immediately, I asked the reporter, actually...I demanded he have this person retract the statement and apologize the recovery community. Well, I couldn't just leave it at that. NO, I had to find this person on facebook and give her my mind on what a terrible statement to make to the recovery community. I was so angry, anger that I haven't felt in a long time. I took it as a personal attack on the recovery community and if I get honest, on me personally. How dare she turn her nose up and belittle "us".
After I felt "righteous" for calling her out on the statement, I went on a bike ride. I had to do something to level out my stress load. I can't drink over it and will not drink over it. I know as a recovering alcoholic, I have to work on letting this go. Of course I am still feeling like I had every right to call her out on her statement but for my sake, I need to let go.be. As I was riding my bike, I began crying, feeling so many emotions. I quickly realized the statement by my ex partner's, ex-partner triggered many negative emotions. If the statement would have been written by someone else, would I have reacted in the way I did? My answer was of course not. I still would of been upset and asked the paper to retract the statement and apologize to the recovery community, but I wouldn't have searched for them on facebook to give them a piece of my mind. This is the moment I realized I should of hit the let go.be pause button and wait 24 hours before reacting. My actions only led to feelings of regret. I hate regrets! Especially when I had the power to not create such a regret. I remember prior to recovering from alcoholism, I woke up every day with so many regrets. The entire time I was peddling, I was longing for my ex partner, wishing she would call and want to do lunch, missing her a great deal and beating myself up for the loss of the relationship. I believe the article that created such a reaction out of me only confirms I am still not over her. Yesterday, triggered grieving moment(s) of not having her in my life. I am coming up on a year of our break up and the grieving process is still happening and that is okay too. I have done a great deal of work on myself the past year and much more to do and that is okay too. Acceptance of where my heart lies regarding my ex partner is important. I can't beat myself up over it and try to escape the emotions, I must feel them and be aware of them. I don't have to live in them all day long, but I do need to honor them when they arise.
I heard from the ex-partner this morning who was stated in the article and her response was.."she was misquoted big time in the article" and I don't know who she is and how she supports the recovering community. She is right, I don't know who she is or that she was misquoted in the article. I read what I read and I ran with it. I felt entitled to tell her exactly what I felt. I did not hit the let go.be pause button before reaction mode kicked in. If I had, I am sure my actions 24 hours later would have been different and wouldn't of went to bed last night regretting. I sincerely appreciate her coming back to me this morning and calling me out. This taught me another valuable lesson and lesson I will learn from. At the end of the day, I want to go to bed proud of all my actions and last night, I didn't. But, I know I have the power to hit the pause button before reacting. One of the greatest gifts is the willingness to see where I went wrong and how I can avoid creating future regret in my life. Well, I am human.....I am sure I will screw up again and again but I am finding longer time spans between the next screw up.
Just wanted to share yet another lesson in my actions. Darn, just hit the let go.be pause button, Jodi! It is really that simple.
Have a let go.be day.
1000 Miles to finding SELF LOVE
Yesterday was a big milestone for me. In the middle of May, I started riding my bike and tracking my miles with no set goals in mind. The 1000 miles represent much more than a number, it represents what happened within those 1000 miles. A year ago, last August, my relationship ended, and once again I found myself lost and scared. The thought of drinking did cross my mind because I had the "thought" what does it matter. Fortunately, I had enough experience under my belt and head full of memories proving to me that the drinks kept me suffering and would not take me out of the game of life. Why would I want to keep the pain I am feeling now to just live in more pain. So, at that moment, I made a commitment to stay single for at least a year, to work on my self-growth and my business. I had to truly practice let go.be and create the life I wanted for myself. I am at this point in my life once again, sober, but so lost and hurt. I had to let go and learn how to be with Jodi. I wanted so bad for someone to distract me from myself, fill my lonely heart with love but, I knew deep down this would only stunt the growth I meant to achieve. I had to learn how to fill my heart with self love. I needed to figure out my how to grow my business and be able to support myself once again. You know, like I used to be able to. I had lost that piece of me when I got sober. I was filled with so much fear, I was afraid to trust in my own abilities and really get back out there in the world of business for the fear that my old ways would surface and I would once again drink. That thinking alone kept me "sick"!
Every day that I went on my bike rides I found more than I ever imagined or even knew I would find. I found self acceptance, self-forgiveness and a genuine self-love and self-worth. I also found my way back to believing in my ability to create a business that allows me to support myself and an open heart to others. I added prayer of gratitude on my rides, always giving thanks for the blessings in my life.
I am going to continue riding, I found passion in it and love what it brings to my heart. The best commitment I made to myself was to stay single and to focus my energy inward. It's been a great year and I must admit, I am not looking for love, it will find me when I am ready. Learning to be okay alone has given me more in return.
I always have let go.be in my heart and my bracelet on my wrist to keep me connected to something greater than myself. Life continues to prove to me, if nothing changes, nothing changes. And the changes have to begin with me.
Loving life the let go.be way.
Learning to Let Go.
I was out riding my bike the other night and feelings of loneliness shot through my veins like no tomorrow. My journey in this moment is learning to let get of the loss my heart continues to feel over losing my relationship with a special woman. I also struggle with what I now know and what I wish I would of known. I often wonder if all the past pain had to happen in order to get me where I am in this moment? I am grateful that my journey is and has been forgiving to allow me the opportunity to learn. I continue to learn by going inward instead of outward. Majority of my life, I avoided all pain and alcohol worked liked a charm until it worked no longer. I cheated myself out of "growing up" and facing life head on and in this moment I choose to face life and everything around me face to face. No more hiding behind the illusion that I am okay and it's everything around me that isn't. Once I am okay with me, the world around me is okay. The question is, how do we let go, truly let go?
As I mentioned above, while on my bike ride the loss of my relationship hit me like a ton of bricks. I began to shed tears of the loss which is an okay thing to do. I believe this is a process for me of letting go as well. The tears were a good thing but my mind began the self chatter that brought fear and loneliness in my heart. I began feeling I would be alone for the rest of my life, will I ever have the opportunity to love and be loved again? My world began to get smaller and smaller in my eyes. I felt myself getting ready to hitch a ride on the self-pity bus leading to no where but more self destruction. I pulled my bike off the road and parked along the Huron River and sat by the water to reflect or what I like to call it, hitting the "pause button". Taking a moment to ask myself the following question?
Do I have everything I need in the moment? Answer: YES. Then I ask the universe, the energy, God to help me put this feeling down just for this moment so I can feel the beauty around me, just for this moment. Allow my heart to be open and free from my self destructive thinking so I can feel and experience this moment with an open heart. The emotional feeling of loneliness is a state of being and when I can hit the pause button and put that emotion down, set it aside and ask for the willingness to keep my heart open, I find and continue to find that I am no longer trapped in that emotion. My heart is open to look around and truly understand that I am not alone. The birds are singing, bikers riding by, and two beautiful swans swimming side by side. Then, my mind goes to maybe I should have been a swan, they apparently know how to have a life time partner. What do they understand about love that I do not. Damn, I wish I was a swan for just a day. Just kidding! Big lesson, stop taking myself so damn serious! I once heard, " I am not much but I am all I ever think about". That saying has stuck with me since I heard it and it has more meaning to me now than it did when I first heard it. I, once again was all about "me", less about the beauty around me until I realized I had everything I needed in this moment and asked for help to let this emotion free of me to be truly present in this moment of life.
I ended up having an awesome day. The rest of my bike ride was filled with seeing everything around me and when I can stay out of myself, I find that I am never alone. My heart is open and when my heart is open with love, I am living.
Thank you for sharing this journey with me.
Journey of Lessons
A friend asked me yesterday while on our bike ride how my life was going? I shared with her that since my career has taken new direction and I have obligated myself to new financial contracts, I am feeling the stress of it all. I have fear of not making things happen but it is a healthy fear. I looked at my friend and said "I would take this type of stress day in and day out over the feeling I had the first 4 1/2 years of my sobriety when I was "LOST" within myself. I went on to explain to her that I woke up each day with a feeling of no purpose but living a sober life. Yes, living a sober life has meaning but I couldn't put the other pieces of the puzzle together.
I didn't know any better than what my experience was for that moment. It took continued sober experience and being uncomfortable in my own skin to get to the other side of being "lost". Why did I have to lose more in order to realize what I now know? I believe the key was to never give up and pick up that drink again because it is "time" that truly matters. Many and I mean many say that it doesn't matter how much sobriety time you have because all we have is this moment. I don't agree with this. I don't agree because it is the sober time we build up that brings us to discovering our "purpose" in each and every moment. If I had picked up drinking through all the pain, I would of missed out on the lessons. The guilt and shame would of found it's way back in my heart and mind and this would have consumed me from feeling the discomfort and from not feeling the discomfort I would have missed the growth within myself.
I was taken back my own words to my friend when I said I would take all the stress today and more than to go back to the first 4 1/2 years of sobriety. I guess you could say it was another moment in my life of reflection. I wasn't able to see or feel the beauty that surrounded me. My lack of self worth sabotaged my own happiness. My actions portrayed the love I had for myself and the love wasn't flowering within me. Alcohol wasn't a part of my life but my lack of self love was still operating as if I was still drinking and the damage I created in the lives of the people I loved were the same as if I had been drinking. I was "lost" and didn't know how to find my way. I have realized that a big part of me being lost was due to the lack of trust I had in myself. I truly felt if I went back into the Advertising Industry I would drink. This is the craziness I told myself, one of many, many lies. I have to admit, since I have been back into it at a much larger scale and putting my neck out beyond comfort levels, the thought of a drink comes to mind more often but through my experiences, I know it is just a thought and it stays a thought unless I act on it. Did it take me staying lost for 4 1/2 years and gaining "time", "sober time" for me to rebuild the "self trust"? The truth in a nutshell, it took me over 20 years to hit my rock bottom and I wanted it all back NOW. I couldn't understand why I continued to not find my way after getting sober? I was afraid, I was afraid of many things; loving someone or allowing someone to truly love me; success because I may drink again and it is these two items that kept me lost. In return my actions led me to stay on a course of financial ruins in business and in love.
Did it take all of that and staying sober through it to realize once again that I have to find my true happiness within. This isn't easy work. I want to be distracted from "self" and I have done this very successful over my 47 years. After my relationship ended 8 months ago I made a commitment to stay out of relationships for at least a year. To take this time to focus on Jodi and I have to say it is a difficult task. I get lonesome and long for someone to love me. Actually, I know the person I want to love me but it is not in the cards so I practice acceptance each and every day on this one. How in the world can I expect to love or be loved with I lack this for myself? This was a question I raised to myself after the relationship ended. The other question I asked myself was what am I bringing to the table? The answers I wrote down were the following, I want to bring joy, self love, self respect, laughter, the ability to truly love another and financial independence. Out of those 6, I brought laughter. I could make people laugh and this is a good thing. Now.....how do I bring the other five? My dear friends, this is what I have been working on and it isn't easy. I had a friend the other day say "do you know what independence means"? I asked him to explain and he responded by saying truly being okay alone. When you can be okay being alone and doing things without a "special someone" is a sense of freedom within yourself. I looked at him and said it is so hard being alone but it is this time that is teaching me to love myself, work on myself and find the love within that I have lacked for 47 years. I knew when my relationship ended 8 months ago I couldn't keep doing the same thing over and over again expecting different results. The change had to happen within me and I am on this journey of pushing myself to uncomfortable limits, taking risks in business and spending time alone, no partner. I just don't want to keep running the same laps around the track that keep leading me across the same finish line.
Keep the faith, fight for you and just know that you are right where you are supposed to be even if the pain seems too much to bare. Stay true to thy own self and the rest will find its way.
Don't give up before the miracles.
It's been a while since my last blog. It's hard to believe my life has changed drastically since I hit an emotional bottom end of August, 2014. As I look back, I had been swimming in an emotional bottom since getting sober. Sure, I worked on things over the years but what I hadn't done was forgive myself for all that I lost and didn't open my heart to trust in myself again. I was stuck in the "less than" feeling and it handcuffed me from moving forward on anything or anyone for that matter. I truly was afraid to get back in the Industry of Billboard Advertising where I knew I could make money for the fear it would trigger feelings to drink. I wanted financial security again but didn't know how to get it without losing sight of staying sober. I was with a beautiful person for almost 4 years of my 5 1/2 years sober and she made it very easy to stay lost within myself. This is no way in blaming her, she just made it easy for me to not have to make money to survive. So the less I did for myself, I continued to feel less than. I must admit out loud, it was nice not having to worry about how the mortgage was going to get paid for the first time in my life. But not a healthy place for either one of us.
7 months ago, I hit the emotional bottom I believe I was meant to hit. I was almost 5 years sober but wanted to die. I actually thought about drinking and just giving up but the deepest part of me knew this wasn't an option. That would of only led to more misery and self loathing. So the option to end my life kept swimming in my mind. For two weeks this went on, conversing with myself and writing my suicide note in my head, over and over again. Once again, my dogs are what kept me in the day of not doing something crazy. It was my dogs 5 1/2 years ago that gave me the willingness to get help for my drinking. I feared I would continue living and not be able to take care of them and have to give them away. I wouldn't have been able to live with myself. I have heard in sobriety that something happens in our lives that gives us that "gift of desperation" to change our current situation. It is different for everyone. 7 months ago when I was wanting to call it quits and leave this world, I found myself not wanting to leave my dogs and worrying about what would happen to me. My Emma has been with me through so much over the past 12 years and how could I be so selfish to leave her behind since she has been by my side through everything. The thought raced through my mind, "if nothing changes, nothing changes", I knew then I needed to do something different. I knew I had to get to the root of my self suffering and knew I needed help. I went to see a therapist and just talking with someone who had absolutely no connection to me was uplifting. I cried the first 5 or 6 sessions and that was so freeing. My consistent phrase was "I am PATHETIC"! After a while it became humorous. In addition, I picked up every book I could find that grabbed my attention and I found myself relating to every single one of them. I found personally healing in all of them and in the process I was discovering myself once again.
I realized I have spent the past 5 years labeling myself an alcoholic and constantly reminding myself all the time of how bad I screwed up my life. I was always talking about what I did prior to getting sober, the success in business, the financial independence I once had until alcohol took me to my knees and I gave everything I worked hard for away to the bottle. I labeled myself as an alcoholic in recovery. And that is exactly where I remained, an alcoholic stuck in recovery. I didn't trust myself to step outside of my new found comfort zone for the fear life would be too much for me and I would drink again. They say in recovery, you have to put recovery before everything. I believe this to be true at the beginning, at least the first year. But the tragedy for me, I continued to live my life by that motto and in return, I stayed trapped in my own fears of "if I do this, I may drink". My whole concept of Let Go.Be is to stop telling yourself lies about yourself because they aren't true. Sure, I need to be aware and not put myself bellied up to the bar having a conversation. This is not a great place for non-drinker. I knew the key to my internal peace was to to let go of things I can't control, let go of self sabotaging thinking and I lived this way. BUT......what I didn't see or wasn't able to see until I hit another emotional bottom was I had not let go of the fact I failed. At least for me to really learn great lessons in life, I have to feel pain in order to look within. Pain is a great motivator for change. I know for myself, when I am feeling good, I don't seem to need to look at myself or evaluate my life or direction. My biggest personal growths have happened when I was at an alcoholic bottom and the latest, my emotional bottom.
7 months ago, I knew I had to start doing again. I had a great motivator here too, I was broke and needed to support myself. I knew I was going to be homeless if I didn't. My family would of taken me in but they live 5 hours away and my home is here. I began talking to the Universe, asking the energy of the universe to keep me close and keep my heart and mind out of the victim role and keep me on the right path. And whatever that path is I will have to trust and let go.
It's crazy, I sat down one night and wrote down what I wanted my life to look like? After that, I asked myself what changes do I need to make in order to have the life I want? So each and every day, I pushed myself to make calls to grow my business and be able to support myself. Just the simple fact of doing even though I had days I just wanted to lay in bed and do nothing but feel sorry for myself, I didn't! As each day passed and I focused on working on myself with my therapist, letting go of the fears, I began to free my mind to challenge myself in the business world. I didn't allow fear to monopolize my mind or heart and over time I began to trust in my ability to create the life I put down on paper. I stopped labeling myself as an alcoholic in recovery because this is not who I am. I am not a victim of it! My story had it show down with alcohol and alcohol beat me down physically, emotionally and spiritually but it does not define who I am or what I can be. The best way to build the self trust is to just get out and do it. Put yourself on the edge and believe and trust that no matter how it works out, you will be taken care of. It;s the act of not doing that keeps my vision limited to the talent that lies within. In return, my mind began to spark ideas and I started seeing opportunities and taking some risk, and those risk didn't include my desired outcome. Better put, I wasn't attached to the outcome.
Over the past 7 months, my business supports myself, I have been able to pay off debts owed and I wake up each and every day with an attitude to let go of the things I can't control and stay in the day with a heart filled with gratitude, compassion and love for myself and others.
In conclusion, 7 months ago I saw my life as a dark hole and wanted to end my life. Today, I can't even believe I was even thinking about giving up. How things change. We can never give up because a miracle awaits us, we just have to start doing instead of not doing.
sending tons of love and laughter your way.
Rest In Peace, Anita.
I have sat down over and over the past week to blog and the words were no where to be found. On December 30th, 2014, my dear friend, Anita passed away at the young age of 28. Anita walked into my life 4 years ago and we have been walking our journey in recovery together. Over the past 4 years, I had the privilege to get to know such a beautiful individual. Anita had this huge heart and a smile to match. It is so hard to believe that she is gone and all due to heroin. She has walked the past years clean and sober helping others who needed her experience, strength and hope. And my dear readers, she delivered on that to the highest potential. On my Grandmother's soul, I never imagined we would be letting her go to the heavens above. Since the day she came into recovery, she put her heart and soul into becoming the woman she aspired to be. Anita had this glowing personality, a person who people wanted to be around. Each and every day I was always inspired by her optimistic approach to life and the life of others. When I received the call that she died, I couldn't wrap my mind around it. Actually, I didn't want to believe it at first.
Anita's, Mother and Aunt asked me the day we laid her to rest to never stop talking about Anita and share her voice with others. The love Anita brought to all of us will continue to shine and her life will continue to change and help others. I can say with no hesitation in my words, I know Anita did not want to die. Nobody will ever really understand why at that moment she felt the need to turn away from recovery and invite her demon back into her life. I believe if Anita was here right now, she would share with everyone that she thought she would make it through that one "high" but she didn't. She would be telling everyone to hang on when the urge kicks in even after substantial sobriety, get in the safe zone of the people who have your best interest at heart and stay away from the friends who relapsed and are actively using. It's never has been or ever will be a safe place to hang. I know it is hard when you make friends and establish a relationship with ones in recovery to let go when you love them dearly. I have been around for a few 24 hours, I have seen it over and over again when one relapses in a circle of friends it doesn't take long for others to follow. It is a house of cards, very unstable. I wanted to ring the necks of a couple people close to Anita who were actively using and hanging around her. I just wish when they go out they hang with people who are using and stay the hell away from the circle of friends who are on the path of recovery. Anita would tell you it was all her decision and we all know this is the truth and she would stand before us accepting full responsibility. I also believe we have to own up to our part in bringing it back into her life. I'm sorry, but heroin isn't like buying a 6 pack at the corner party store. It takes knowing who has it and, when it is right in your immediate surroundings it can become easy to say "hello", my destructive demon. I will say it loud and clear, you know who you are and if you think for a second you aren't walking around with blood on your hands you are WRONG! It is time to stand up against accepting that this behavior of taking your friends down with you is Okay. Heroin is killing our young people. I had so much anger after the loss of Anita and anger towards the people I know who brought it back into her life but I knew I had to let go of the anger and fill my heart with Anita's beauty. Something was lingering within Anita that took her to this dark place. My sweet, Anita.....I adore you, so many adore you and feel the loss of you tremendously. I promise you, I will share your journey and you will continue to reach out and touch others through the hearts of all of who love you. What an inspiration you were and always will be. Your last decision does not define you, your precious gift of love defines you and will live on.
If you are a person reading this and struggling with your own demons, reach out and ask for help and trust that the obsession, the urge will pass. It is just imperative to protect yourself from the temptation, this means even if it means letting go of the friends or lover that is in your life at that moment. You have to take care of yourself, and many times this means letting go of the ones you love. This is going to sound very harsh but I am going to say it. If you are in recovery and begin using again, hang with your fellow addicts and stay the hell away from people in recovery. I promise you, we will all be there to help you when you are ready for help but we can not be there for you when you are actively using. Learn from Anita's one fatal decision, it is not a guarantee you will make it out alive. And, I know she wasn't ready or wanting to die! BUT SHE DID!
I love and adore you, my dear friend/ Sponsee. Please watch over me and I will forever look to you for guidance.
Let go.be .......my dear Anita.
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