Friday, January 30, 2009

"Self-discipline is the ability to get yourself to take action regardless of your emotional state. " Steve Pavlina

I just found a blog that has a myriad of articles on such subjects as how to get yourself out of bed when the alarm goes off, etc It looks like I could sit here all day and just read this guy's posts and entertain myself without having to make any changes. Since I don't have all day (it's time for me to get ready and go for an appointment), I will just say that the Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous says that we recovering alcoholics are undisciplined people. It says that several times. I need to read Steve's stuff and see if it helps. I love the above definition. In the beginning of his article he says something like - wouldn't it be wonderful if when you noticed you were 20 lbs overweight, you just said, oops! I'm going to lose 20 lbs and then just did it!?

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Courage to Change

I wonder why the Serenity Prayer says, "courage to change the things I can." Just today I started wondering about it. Hmmm. I've been saying this prayer for years - sometimes several times a day - and I just now wondered why it takes courage to change... Maybe because it's hard to admit that a change is needed. But it doesn't say that. It says, "courage TO change." Probably the answer is that for me any change is fearful. Even when things are really crappy, it's somehow more comfortable to stick with the familiar. No wonder I have to have a higher power helping in order to make a change.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Serenity Experiments update

I'm allowing days off from meetings when I think I need "rest" - which really means I'm checking out -retreating - allowing my mind, emotions and body to process and integrate the events I'm living with. I've checked this out with my mentors and advisors, and we agree - apparently I really need to do this and fighting it is useless. So - why not manage it so that it serves my well being instead of tormenting me with guilt. Boy, does that help. Having experienced some drama and upset a few days ago, in one of my important relationships (I was indeed being obnoxious without really realizing it, and paid a big price since I got a long rant from the other person about my being a control freak), I'm taking some days off to recover. I went to a meeting on Saturday but not Sunday. I did talk to one of my sponsors on Sunday. No meeting yesterday either but spent a couple of hours with another of my sponsors. Today the world is iced over so I have a wonderful excuse for hibernating.

"I have learned that, if we set our minds to it, we have an incredible, almost awesome ability to find misery in any situation, even the most wonderful...Be done with it!...Today I will joyfully claim responsibility for myself and focus on what's good and right in my life. Melody Beattie, The Language of Letting Go.

Friday, January 23, 2009

The idea of turning our lives and our will over to the care of God is a very revolutionary thing to do. We are being told, "Let go of your excessive carefulness. Let the spirit guide you." When we are in touch with ourselves, with the people around us, with God, we are free to experiment. We don't learn from doing the same things correctly again and again. We learn from trying new things and making mistakes. Over control is spiritually deadening. This is a program of life. Our renewal is a miraculous event. Why stop now? We can be in touch with the messages around us without trying to control the outcome. When we let God do the worrying, we find many possibilities open up. As this adventure of life unfolds, I will not shy away from it. ~Touchstones

I love the idea of letting go of excessive carefulness. I am just a human being. I can't see all the dangers. I can't see the future. It's fruitless to even try. I can refrain from jumping off tall buildings but for other less obvious dangers, I must let spirit guide me. This guidance tells me that no matter what happens, I will be all right.

Thursday, January 22, 2009


Someone told me that a way to recognize one's character defects was to listen carefully to what people tell you about yourself. If one person tells you that you have a six foot long purple tail, don't pay any attention. That's obviously crazy. But if a second person tells you you have a six foot long purple tail, you should probably look. But if a third person tells you you have a six foot long purple tail, you should just go ahead and make an appointment with a surgeon to have it removed.

From following this advice, I've learned a lot about myself that I didn't know. I usually have no idea I have certain traits until someone tells me. One of the beautiful things about being in recovery is that my fellow travelers will almost always tell me what they see if I ask. I hate asking. But it's been valuable.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

We have a new president. It gave me joy to see the joyful, hopeful faces of the millions who came to bear witness. My hope is that unlike Christmas, we will continue to be hopeful and helpful all through the next four years.

Friday, January 16, 2009

I stole this image from another recovering blogger's site. It's what I get from meetings. I'm always incredibly grateful when I leave a meeting. I've been reminded of who and what I am. I have received the miracle of a second chance at life.
I've been asked to share my story at my home group's open meeting tonight. Another great way to assess where I am in my journey even though I really don't like speaking that much. However, even though I don't like it, I always need to hear what I have to say.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Serenity Experiments update

Missed Monday. Was just not able to get myself to head for the meeting I'd chosen. I was very tired so rested instead. Tuesday I got to give a wonderful friend his 8 year chip. What an honor. Wednesday I attended a meeting I'd never been to before and saw a friend from 25 years ago that I hadn't seen in years. Today I went to a noon meeting and saw some more people I hadn't seen before. All three meetings reminded me that serenity comes from surrender.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Serenity experiment update: Meeting at noon yesterday was about the effects of an environment where addictions rule. Reminded me again of the importance and urgency of being aware of my hard wiring lest it get me into trouble in my current life. Meeting today: learning to recognize when I'm being affected by my past hardwiring so that I can change! Good stuff.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Serenity Experiments

When I first came into a 12 step program, I had a sponsor that suggested I treat using the tools of the program as experiments - in other words, try something for awhile and see what effect it had. The first suggestion she made was that I go to a meeting every day for two weeks and see what happened. Well, I didn't do a very good job of following that suggestion because I was too flaky to be consistent. But I managed at least part of a meeting six days out of seven and went to two on Saturday. Lo and behold! I felt SO much better. My flakiness diminished and my emotional pain was drastically reduced. That made a believer out of me. From then on, I tried out every suggestion at least for awhile. Some of them worked better than others but I learned how to use the tools of the program in my own life.

Right now I'm at another transition point in my life. I don't like transition points. They require decisions. They require change. I'm feeling unsettled and flaky. I'm in a certain amount of emotional pain. BUT it's time. My leg is almost healed. I'm almost finished with the projects I'm doing for my old employer. It occurs to me that serenity is the state of mind I most need when I'm at a transition point. Oh yes, I sarcastically say to myself, it is probable that the tools of the program could work again in this situation.

So, my first experimental tool will be a meeting every day from now until the end of the month.

Friday, January 09, 2009


"If you don't know what you're here to do, then just do some good. I'm convinced of this: Good done anywhere is good done everywhere. For a change, start by speaking to people rather than walking by them like they're stones that don't matter. As long as you're breathing, it's never too late to do some good." Maya Angelou

It's been my experience that this is totally true. Even if I have to shove myself out of a screaming black depression to contribute something in the world, it's always a way to happiness - even if just for a moment!

Thursday, January 08, 2009

Sublime 2009

Rebecca and Kristin at Hideway Pizza after The Nutcracker. Here here's me, Rebecca and her boyfriend at The Nutcracker. Then here are my two precious daughters at Hideaway's Pizza. Here's me cracking up over pizza after seeing The Nutcracker. My oldest granddaughter's boyfriend made me laugh like crazy!
Say goodbye to the crutch. According to my xray, the femur in my leg that's been broken for 3 1/2 years appears to be very nearly healed. I've switched to the cane and plan to be walking without support as soon as the muscles in my leg are strong enough. Another transition time. Another time for gratitude!

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