The Real Deal

October 12, 2014 9:35 am Leave your thoughts


Sometimes I get very caught up in all of the things that I am not doing. There is a lot of negative thinking that creeps its way into my head sometimes. I know that this stinking-thinking is not very good for me… for sure.

I think about how many meetings that I am not going to and people that I have not talked to in a long time. People that were there from the time that I first got sober in the Beacon HouseSM.. to some of the people in my SLE… to the couple of years that I was in the Monterey Peninsula.  It makes me feel just a bit ashamed of myself.

Maybe this is just a whole bunch of self-pity that is surfacing for me. Self-Pity has always been a thing for me.  I can remember being really really little and having an ice cream cone in my hands on a family vacation.  I was so excited about this cone. Then something happened.. I probably licked it way too hard and the ice cream fell off the cone. I remember looking at it on the ground and all that I could feel was sorry for myself. Like I had been wronged. I don’t know why this was one of those things that I can always remember…

Yesterday, I was in Rocky Mountain National Park by myself.  I was sitting on a rock and looking at the snowcapped mountains towering in front of me. I was not making a sound and all that I could hear was the water from the lake that was in front of me. There was wind traveling through the surrounding trees.

Everything just sort of fell away. All of the busy things that my mind has been doing for the past couple of months like airports, flights, hotels, my computer, email and expectations just didn’t matter for this second. I had a really big smile on my face and all I could feel was overwhelming gratitude.

I sat there on that rock and said a prayer to my higher power… incredibly thankful for all of the things that I do have. Saying a big thank you for my sobriety (which in my humble opinion is pretty damn strong). Excited for the life that I do have that is a direct result of all of those people that came before me.

I would not have been able to enjoy that beautiful vista, on that rock with that wind in the trees if it was not for my sobriety.

When it all comes down to it.. this is the real deal. This is what I always wanted my life to be.. and so much more those years ago sitting on the front porch of the Beacon HouseSM wondering if there was ever going to be a day when I could not crave a drink.

Thankfully, I don’t have those cravings anymore. There are just not there anymore and there are other things that I crave today… like being able to wear sweatpants all day on a Sunday.


Good and Bad Patterns

October 8, 2014 9:34 am Leave your thoughts



SF: One Sec Shots from Brian Emerick on Vimeo.

Do you ever notice that you ever notice that your life is just a set of patterns?

That is really what my life is… a whole bunch of patterns that I have cobbled together. When I really take a look at these patterns I can see some good and bad things that come up. I have had some really bad unhealthy patterns and then modified those patterns into something much better. Then even after changing the bad patterns to good healthy patterns… sometimes they go back to the bad side.

Years ago, when I was drinking I know that I had some pretty bad patterns. Some of these patterns I was really proud of at the time. When I look back on them now I can’t believe that I could have lived that way.. but I did. An example of these unhealthy patterns that I was proud of was the way that I would drink daily at the end.

I would come to in the morning and go straight to a local bar that opened early. At the time I did not think anything of it.  It was just what I did. After drinking a couple of beers and shots I would stagger home… sometimes not making it and passing out on someones front porch. I would sleep there for a little bit and then head to another local bar to drink some more… this pattern of drinking and sleeping… and drinking and sleeping would continue for a couple of months. This would help me get to where I needed to be. It was a horrible existence but it brought me the Beacon HouseSM.

When I was in the Beacon HouseSM and in my Sober Living Environment I would learn some new things that would help to change those patterns. Obviously, I was not around alcohol that much anymore but it was always there in my mind.  Every morning we would get up and make our beds and go downstairs for check-in. This was the start of creating a new healthy pattern in my life. At the time, I really didn’t know why I had to do what was being asked of me but I knew that it was much better then what I was doing before.

One of the things that was suggested to me early on was to schedule everything around my meetings and counseling sessions. I was never really a big fan of schedules so this was going to be a huge challenge for me. Idle time was a killer for me. If I did not have something to do then I knew that I would get myself into trouble. So what I did was pack my day with as many recovery related activities as I could. That was what had to be done.

These were some of my patterns that changed from being horrible… to starting to shape what I would become.

These can go the other way too.  Wait… I take that back. They are just different patterns. The ones that I have now are related to my work and what I have to do everyday to be successful in my job. They help me manage my time and keep me on top of things. They are much different then my past patterns. I am not drinking at 6am.. so thats good.

I am on the road a lot for my job. When I get home there are some things that I want to do to start to build some even healthier patterns. These are going to be around recover, yoga and food.

The reason that I included my friend Brian’s awesome video about San Francisco is because when I watch it.. it reminds me of all of the amazing things that I have in my life. The City is one of those things. I hope that you enjoy it!