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Archive for March, 2013

much younger daysI have people who depend on me.  I have people who trust me and believe in my word.  What a remarkable thing that is considering where I have come from.

There was a day, not so long ago, when my word was worth very little.  I could not be trusted nor could I be believed.  My whole world revolved around alcohol, and mundane things like trust and character did not enter into my daily life.  My family worried about me, of course, because they loved me, but they did not trust me and quite frankly, they were convinced I would be dead within the near future.

Today that is all gone because you see, today alcohol is not my lover.  Today I love life, and my well-being, and that of my family, are the most important things in my life.

The change in me happened because I made a choice.  It was a difficult choice because it required that I change most things about me, but it was a conscious choice and one that completely changed my life.

You can do the same!  If you are struggling with alcohol or drugs, there is help available, but the first step involves admitting that there is a problem and that you need help.  When you are ready to admit those things then you are on your way for the trip of a lifetime.

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teacherI mean, I inherited the disease of alcoholism, and I learned early to get help when I needed it. I always went to people who knew more than I did.

Liza Minelli

 

Boy, talk about an endorsement for sponsorship!  Great quote and oh so true.  When I was first cognizant of the fact that I had a problem with alcohol, I had no clue how to stop drinking.  I mean  no clue.  I would continually make efforts to stop drinking, or at least cut back, and nothing I did had any effect.

It was only when I sought out help from those who had successfully given up alcohol that I finally began to find a solution.  Finding the right sponsor in AA is so important.  Learning from someone who has been there, who understands, and who has found the solution is invaluable for those just starting on the sobriety journey.

My sponsors have all helped me to not only stop drinking but to live a meaningful and happy life sober.  They taught me to look at myself, because I was the main problem.  They taught me how to cope with life, and to not only cope but to embrace life and love it as the gift that it is.

If I don’t know how to fix my car when it breaks down I go to a mechanic.  If I don’t know how to stop drinking I go to someone who has done that successfully.

It just makes sense to do so.

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markIt is my pleasure to introduce you to a friend of mine, Mark Bruno!  Mark has agreed to supply today’s post about alcoholism. I’m sure you will find it interesting and helpful.

 

How To get Your Life Back On Track After Leaving An Alcohol Rehabilitation Center

You have finally taken that step towards a new life and have entered a Rehab. Center for the treatment of your alcohol addiction.

You put your heart into getting well and listened to your counselors every words of advice and wisdom.  Now the time comes that you will be released from their care and back you go to the outside world with many temptations from your past and the friends you hung around during those times of drinking and abusing alcohol.

The questions in your mind are how to get your life back on track after leaving an Alcohol Rehabilitation Center?

There are unfortunately many things that you must avoid when entering back into society as a clean and sober person.  Some you may not like, but it is a must to listen to those words from your counselors, as they know best for your well being and your long term sobriety.

Number 1 – You just may have to say goodbye to your past drinking buddies for they will try to influence you to start drinking alcohol again.  They sure don’t like drinking alone without you.  Many of them will not support you choice to become clean and sober for jealousy they don’t have the willpower or the determination to get sober as you did.

Number 2 –  You may need to stay clear of any parties or functions that your family has until you feel comfortable being around alcohol again. (This is what I had to do in the beginning of my recovery)

Number 3 –  You MUST stay busy physically and mentally at all times so that your minds doesn’t wonder to what you are trying to stay away from which is your past alcohol addiction.

Number 4 – Think of a hobby that you would really enjoy doing and be able to even share this hobby with your family.

Number 5 – Take walks alone or with your spouse or sober friends.

Number 6 –  Start a exercise regiment at home or join a gym to be around others that are trying to make their lives better as you are.

For more wisdom from Mark, follow along on his blog at here or  you can find him on HubPages at here.
Thank you Mark!

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much younger daysMaking amends.  The 8th and 9th Steps of AA.  Very tough times for most recovering alcoholics.  Facing those we have harmed and saying we are sorry and asking forgivenesss…..folks, if you have never done it then you have no way of knowing how difficult this is.

I was never a violent drunk.  I was never obnoxious and I rarely if ever went out in public to drink. I did, however, cause my share of emotional and psychological pain for those who loved me, and I had to make amends for that damage.

I have done that now and I need never go back to that way of life.  The choice is mine! Today I live a life where, at the end of the day, I owe nobody reparations or apologies.  I live a simple life and treat others with respect and compassion.

The past is passed.  Wallowing in self-pity will solve nothing.  Wallowing in guilt is counter-productive.  Today I am all about helping others and being a positive influence in the lives of those I meet.

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teacherEASY DOES IT!  Anyone who has spent any time around Alcoholics Anonymous has heard those three simple words.  So, what do they have to do with alcoholism?

I have used this example before but it is worth repeating.  My first sponsor in AA used to tell me that I could make a typhoon out of a glass of water.  I still laugh when I think of that because it was very accurate.

Back in my drinking days, everything was a major crisis.  The simplest occurrences were reasons to get upset or get stressed.  My life was one big catastrophe and it was exhausting.

Fast forward to today, six years later.  Very little in life bothers me.  In fact, I have got it made in the shade, dudes and dudettes.  I take life as it comes and don’t stress the small stuff.

The Promises of AA do not promise that if you stop drinking you will get your wife back, or you will get a better job, or  you will make more money and have less bills.  No, the promises simply say that if you live according to the principles of AA you will learn how to live life without alcohol, and you will no longer be a slave to booze.

That is where I am now.  I am living the Promises and my life has never been so good.

Does that sound good to you?  Well then Easy Does It!

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wash d.c.Let go Let God!  There was a time during my early sobriety when I hated those four words.  Why the hell should I trust God to handle things? He hadn’t done such a good job up to that point.  LOL  Oh what hubris!  The fact is that I kept trying to manipulate life and have things happen according to what I wanted.  I was the director of life and I wanted everything to happen the way I wanted them to happen.  That, my friends, is a formula for defeat.

I can’t honestly say that I spend a lot of time praying and asking for God’s help, but I do now see the wisdom in just accepting life.  I handle what is in front of me on a daily basis.  Things change and I adjust according to the changes.  I am like a willow in the wind, bending but not breaking, rather than a tall oak that gets knocked down the first time a heavy wind arrives.

It is exhausting trying to control everything and everybody.  Life is much better now that I have learned to accept life and those around me.  Much less stress….much less anxiety…and a whole lot more enjoyment.

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teacherNo warnings about alcohol today!  No scary scenarios that could happen!  No memories of horrible days where life had no meaning.

Today we will talk briefly about the joys of sobriety.  I have heard newcomers say that they can’t imagine every having fun without alcohol.  They have asked me what do I do if I’m not drinking.

What do I do? I live life!  I love life!  I am so damn busy I can’t get everything done in a day.  My life has expanded so much in the past six years, and new opportunities arrive almost daily.  There is so much I want to accomplish.  There are so many things I want to experience.  I have a woman by my side who adores me and I want her and I to get the most out of our time left on this planet, and none of it would have been possible if I were still drinking.

Today my senses are alive, my mind is fresh, my sense of humor has returned and I love everything about this world I live in….and it is all because I put the plug in the jug!

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