January 28, 2016 12:35 pm
I was out shoveling snow the other day.
I noticed a friend of mine shoveling snow too. However, she was not shoveling her own driveway…
My friend was out in freezing weather shoveling the driveway of her friend, who happens to be my neighbor.
My friend shoveled FOUR inches of snow in 10 degree weather because she does not work and her friend does.
My friend said she had the time and it would help the family out.
She gave her time and energy freely.
I have thought a lot about my friend and the act of love she demonstrated.
Have you witnessed a random act of kindness like this lately? Have you done a random act of kindness lately?
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January 15, 2016 9:58 pm
Today I was in yoga.
We did ‘Tree Pose’.
I was able to balance on one foot. This is a gift of sobriety.
Thinking back to early recovery, I could not balance on one foot. It was impossible.
To accomplish what I can do today, I started small.
Foot to ankle.
Foot to knee.
Today, foot to mid-thigh with arms extended overhead.
Balance has been a progressive marker for my healing.
For me balance means: my focus has become greater and my mind has become calmer.
Achieving balance on the mat has helped me to achieve balance in my life.
Can you balance on one foot?
December 31, 2015 1:31 pm
Why did I get sober? There are many reasons.
The reason that sticks out most in my mind today is:
I stopped caring if I lived or died.
To think back on being in that place after many years of sobriety…. I am saddened.
To not care if I LIVED or DIED!!!!
What a dark time that was in my life…
Sitting here now, thinking of that time, I cry silent tears of gratitude.
Getting sober was the hardest thing I have ever done.
It has also been the most rewarding.
I am blessed in this life.
If you are thinking of getting sober.
If you are in that dark spot of not caring…
Please, choose the Light.
It only gets better.
Happy New Year.
Beacon HouseSM Admissions: 866-421-6156
December 24, 2015 2:19 pm
This thought has crossed my mind numerous times….
I got loaded EVERY day for YEARS, so does that mean I should go to a meeting EVERY day for YEARS? How about during holidays?
I believe the answer is yes to both questions.
When I got sober it was “suggested” that I go to a meeting every day, for 90 days… NINETY DAYS!
I listened to this “suggestion” – reluctantly at first…. I was lucky in that I loved the first meeting that I attended. I loved it so much that I went to one that evening as well – 8pm Monday night at Beacon HouseSM!!
There is one thing that always sticks out in my mind about the holiday question…. In treatment, we have group and go to meetings on holidays – we do not take a break for the disease. Why? Because the disease never takes a break! Did you quit drinking or using on holidays? I absolutely did not!
My “suggestion” is to go to a meeting during the holidays. Never take a break from your recovery, just as you never took a break from using while active in your disease.
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!!
December 18, 2015 12:53 pm
Sometimes I just have to laugh….
I went to a lovely Holiday Party at my friend’s house last week. What a great time!
I, of course, showed up with my Diet Coke can in hand…. Everyone else had mini wine bottles poured into beautiful glasses or a beer.
These situations are uncomfortable for me…. Only in the sense that I feel like I stand out – wine glasses, beer bottles, and then me – Diet Coke can!!!! I feel different, I am different. In this group of women, I am the ONLY one that does not drink and is not fixated on wine…. There is SO much talk about WINE!!!!. So, to fit in better, I came up with the simple solution of pouring my Coke into a glass!! It is not rocket science, but it took me a good half-hour to figure out…..
All settled in and enjoying the company, it was time for the White Elephant gift exchange…. This is what I won….
At first I was disappointed, but in the end I just had to laugh with my Diet Coke in hand!!!!!
Happy Safe, Sober Holidays to you!!!
December 8, 2015 5:02 pm
The Holiday season can be a challenge for me with all the social events/parties to attend.
One of the biggest hurdles that I face at these social gatherings is the expectation of other people, mainly friends. They all have an idea of how the holidays should be experienced, with the focus being on drinking alcohol……..
In the past, these events would be a time for drinking and partying….. Today, it is not about that for me….. BUT this time of year does require extra diligence to maintaining my spiritual condition and recovery….
This Holiday season I have started reading the Big Book again, from the beginning. As I am reading, I am reminded that no matter how much time goes by; how good I feel; how successful I am in life; I will never be safe from the grips of my alcoholism.
Most of us have believed that if we remained sober for a long stretch, we could thereafter drink normally…We have seen the truth demonstrated again and again: “Once an alcoholic, always an alcoholic.” Commencing to drink after a period of sobriety, we are in a short time as bad as ever. P. 33
I have seen this self-defeating, rationalizing behavior more times than I’d like to admit through my work, family, and in the rooms. Yet, I can have all the knowledge in the world, but if I’m not maintaining my recovery, spiritual path, and practicing the steps I can give into that first drink as quickly as the other person.
No matter how many years I have in recovery, I am no stronger than the other alcoholic who has one day sober.
We are in this together, one day at a time……. Happy, sober, holidays!! Happy, clean and sober, life!
November 25, 2015 1:13 pm
We live in a culture that LOVES to drink. Actually, with a few exceptions and my fellowship friends I really do not know anyone that does not drink….
I am frequently faced with the following questions, especially around this time of year with the holidays quickly approaching:
What would you like to drink?
Why are you not drinking?
Are you SURE you would not like a drink?
Why don’t you just try this, it’s delicious? (Believe me……I know that pear cider is delicious…. )
These questions can be challenging at times. They were especially challenging when I first moved to the Mid-West away from my support network on the Monterey Peninsula. Before Nebraska, I lived in my “Pacific Grove Bubble” which consisted of:
Work (at Beacon HouseSM)
Sponsor, Friends (basically all sober), Family
I never really had the opportunity to utilize the tools from my “Tool Box.” Today I get to utilize those tools that I had been collecting for over a decade. These tools or solutions are as follows:
Stay spiritually connected. Always. And if I am not connected, I stay home.
Always have a drink in hand (water, diet coke, club soda) so people do not feel the need to constantly ask me what I would like to drink….
I practice saying “no thank you” and leaving it at that.
I stay close to my husband when at social gatherings.
If not with my husband, I always have an exit plan, if needed, to leave a social event.
And lastly, I always remember… There is NO problem or situation that is worth a drink…. For me, alcohol makes things worse, never better!
What solutions do you have for this holiday season? What is in your toolbox?
November 11, 2015 12:43 pm
This is not much compared to the great sacrifices made by the service men and women serving our country, however, in helping to honor our Veterans and Active Duty, I was able to participate in “Operation Cookie Drop” at a local Air Force Base. Spouses pulled together to make HUNDREDS of cookies for these men and women. We bagged cookies of three, added Hersey Kisses, and passed them out as Airmen were leaving work . What an honor to give back just a very small gesture of Gratitude….
As I participated in “Operation Cookie Drop” I was reminded that Veterans Day is a day dedicated for us to pause and salute all who have served. It is a day to honor the tremendous sacrifices made by members of the U.S. Armed Forces and their families to preserve our freedom.
I am proud to be an American and I am grateful to my family who has served and are currently serving our Country. Some of my family turned to alcohol and never recovered from their experiences defending our freedom…..
Thank you to my Great Grandfather, Grandfather, Father, and Husband.
To all Veterans, there are no words for me to express how thankful I am to each and every one of you who have defended our country, past and present. I thank you for your personal sacrifices and I am honored to be able to support your families.
November 8, 2015 5:55 pm
November is Gratitude Month…
What is Gratitude?
I say that Gratitude is a necessary ingredient to living a happy and fulfilling life. Since I have begun practicing an “Attitude of Gratitude” I have noticed benefits to my mood, decrease in stress, and just an overall improvement in my well-being. I am happier, healthier, more physically fit, and both my personal and professional relationships benefit!
Based on articles that I have read, I have learned that our brains are wired to promote positive responses when we practice gratitude. This results in better relationships, sleep, health, mood, happiness, satisfaction at work and school, and resiliency.
With the regular practice of Gratitude, we DO decrease stress, anxiety, depression and we recover faster from trauma and injuries….
And it’s as easy as jotting down a thought or two a day of what you are grateful for on paper, telling people in your life why you appreciate them, and/or focusing on the positive in situations throughout your day. This does not come naturally for me. It is work. For me, Gratitude is action.
This month and every month, I’m going to acknowledge my Gratitude to see what impacts I can make. I am sure my husband will notice!!!
How will it impact your life?
October 29, 2015 1:59 am
It is Fall in Nebraska.
When I was drinking I lived in a world that consisted of looking at the tops of my shoes and never, EVER looking up.
When I was newly sober, it was suggested to me to look up. This is a suggestion that I have never forgotten and utilize frequently.
This is what Fall looks like in the Mid-West when I look up:
Try looking up. It is amazing what is all around us!
“Keep Looking Up… That’s The Secret Of Life…” – Snoopy