Living in the Now. Its a spiritual principal that spreads across all religions and spiritual pathways. Probably because it is the hardest concept to incorporate into our lives.... for me anyways.
Thursday, May 30, 2013
I have given much thought, contemplation and experience into this topic over the past two years of recovery.
When I was married and living with three kids, a Parrot and a Dog, I felt the deepest loneliness. This feeling was unidentified then and left me feeling confused and spun me off the rails in search of fulfilment. I spent the next several years filling this void with drugs, men, and endless parties filled with people.
The loneliness never subsided it grew, every morning I would wake up in a deeper pit of utter aloneness. The sense of disconnection from everyone in the world, the world and myself included. I felt like I didn't belong anywhere and that I was an alien amongst all these humans. I really struggled with this sense of loneliness.
Coming into the rooms spun me into a whole new process of loneliness and being alone. For the first time I felt like I connected with people and was around a group of people that finally understood me. It was a wonderful feeling and I wanted more and more of it. In the early days of recovery I was with some one 24/7. Filling my loneliness void with all this new found acceptance and affection. I was about to overdose on it.
The Virgo in me cannot handle constant interactions with people, I need my space and alone time. Yet alone time was very bad for my thought processes, so I was caught in a bit of a confusing cycle. Can't be with people all the time yet cannot spend any time alone. I see this constantly in the rooms and outside the rooms as well. People afraid to be alone, yet dislike the people they hang around with.
I found my solution skimming the surface of the 12 steps, just waiting to be picked up by the ready and willing. Making friends with A higher Power. To discover and determine what your own higher power is, is the first step to building a relationship with an energy that will keep you company and out of your head when your alone, yet keep you confident when your with others.
For me my higher power cannot be the rooms any more because that puts other people in control of that power. My higher power is tapped when I am taking care of myself and doing things that I personally enjoy doing. It took some self discovery to find out what those things are, but now that I know I can tap that power when I am feeling lonely.
As I write this I am again amazed at how advice for my own personal issues of the moment come through the words of the daily meditation book written years ago by several people. How it works is simply to big for me to understand and I will leave that one to the powers that be. I have been feeling lonely and seeking out unhealthy avenues to fill that loneliness lately, only to feel more lonely. I forgot this lesson I have already learned.
The last two days of rain, work has slowed a bit and I have been able to hit the spa and the gym and fill up on the love of my higher power. I have been able to spend some quality time with my daughter and that has filled up my heart with a love deep. I have been able to lunch with a dear friend and have connected with another dear friend as well, which always balances me out and provides me with outside perspectives to my life.
I was walking through the park the other day, enjoying my time alone. It suddenly occurred to me as tears sprung to my eyes, how filled I was and how in love I was. In love with my life, my self, the world as a whole and the gorgeous blooming cherry tree standing before me. Being alone is where I feel the least lonely now. It was only through getting to know, like and love myself that I was able to fill the void of loneliness.
Today I am bringing balance back to the loneliness that was creeping into my heart from working long hours and not taking care of myself. I am happy again and heading off to the gym for a nice run while I wait for work to decide if this is gonna be a rain day or not! Have a good one folks!!
Wednesday, May 29, 2013
See my struggle has always been with the good not the challenging. When my life is falling apart I am comfortable. I am much better at ripping down what I built over building up the dreams of my heart. I can easily find my higher Power when life is tough and I am humbled, I find the void when things are going good and I slip back into Ego the true trying times for me.
This past two months with starting a new job has been both wonderful and terrible all at the same time. Terrible in the sense of feeling disconnected from my routine and thus my schedule of connecting with my world, yet wonderful in the fact I was completely out of my head the entire time.
Let me explain what being in my head means to me. When I get stuck in my head I am trapped in a viscous circle of thoughts. Thoughts that run like a hamster on the wheel of my mind. Chewing and re-chewing idea's, concepts, facts, memories and perceived evils over and over again. The past couple months I have been far to busy and tired to have any other thoughts then basic needs needing to be met. Now though things are settling and the thoughts that have been patiently waiting in the background are demanding my attention.
My mind since active addiction has seemed to slip into this low self esteem negative mode where nothing is every good enough and I am destined to lose everything. I was not always this negative, it bothers me that I am today. I have so much fear some days I truly wonder how I function. Then other days I am full of confidence and grace. Its the days I can tap my higher power that I feel positive. It's not always easy today to tap that power.
I am just beginning to understand how much work recovery is. How much work it is to keep my mind healthy and free from all the debris this world and my own addict wants to fill it with. How much work it is to hold a regular job and not run when my emotions flare up. How much work it is to maintain a positive parental role for my daughters and son. How much work it is to keep my friendships alive and well. And in all of that there is my desire to be touched in an intimate way by a man. Which I have no energy left at the end of the day for.
I am not meaning to spin a negative on this, however I am mearly pointing out that I need my higher power to carry me more through the good times then I do the rough ones. Because its through the busyness of the building that I lose the energy I need to keep building. It is today that I need to connect with the love and support of my creator. I need the reassurance and the guidance I am still on the right path. I need the love and affection to nurture me and help me feel less lonely as I move towards the goals I set for myself a few months ago.
My recovery is not slipping. I am merely pausing to rest and to have a good cry over all the realizations and understandings I have been awakened to in these past few months. It is always hard for me to learn a new quality about myself, good or not so good. Today I am facing so not so good ones. This is when I use the serenity prayer to get me through and I keep on moving.
Hope you all are having a wonderful day and now I must get moving to work.... loving rain days and the time they gift me.
Sunday, May 26, 2013
Making amends and one addict helping another......
I must be very mindful of how I present my thoughts and observations here. I need to always write from my own place of being and not expose that of another. In a previous blog I was always sharing personal stories that involved other people and I see now just how uncool that was. When people know who I am in the real world they can put two and two together and gather a lot of info on a person even if I don't include their names. So learning how to tell my story without divulging another's is what my goal for this blog is..... tricky business.
But again I digress before any progress.
I had to make amends this week. An amends to a person that triggered me and my first thought was to avoid like the plague. Run away. Thats what I do all the time and now I am realizing in ALL situations. I already know I am a runner in romantic relationships but I had no idea how much of a runner I am in any form of conflict. I couldn't run this time and as a matter of fact... I am feeling any time, any more. I am living life differently now.
I found my addict coming alive when I got around this person. After just a few hours in the presence of this beings energy I was slipping into the realm of my Lady Vixen (my cold hearted addict persona). Romancing and reminiscing the good ol days of doping and parties, increasingly vulgar jokes, disrespecting myself and others...... Mere moments and Vixen was back in all her glory like she never left.
Two days of this and I truly felt like I had relapsed. I guess this is what they call an emotional relapse. I felt and still do, dirty and used the way I did back in those days. I feel shameful and disgraced. All the yuck is sitting in the surface of my skin and I just wanna crawl out of it. How powerful, cunning and baffling this disease is. After working so hard on my recovery to fall victim so unwittingly is stunning to me. And was each time I relapsed.... this time I didn't relapse (progress not perfection)
After day two I called my sponsor. Cleared my dirty secret and gained guidance. I had to make amends to this person. I was concerned about this move as denial is a funny thing in people still making love with the disease of addiction. Seduction and acceptance all to alluring for me. Yet the disgusting memories and feelings kept me on course... playing the tape till the end. I made the amends.
Quick flip of the scales lead me into a position of one addict helping another. Because then the questions began to flow and the slow subtle acknowledgement that a problem may be afoot was to be whispered out of the lips of a suffering addict outside the rooms. My heart like the Grinches grew three sizes that day as Lady vixen was put back in her cold cage and I rose up again in her place. My New friend asked to attend a meeting.
Life on lifes terms is a series of challenges and obstacles to get through in the course of the day. When I fall asleep at night these days there is no longer one lingering obsession to occupy my thoughts. Everyday is a different thought of overcoming or rising up or stress and frustration at a current challenge being manoeuvred. I am in awe of the complete dynamics of how this universe works and my tiny but seemingly huge part in it.
Another exciting week has past and I find myself slowly incorporating back into my life. Find work life balance definitely a new concept for me to explore and work in my world. A concept I find terribly daunting and frustrating.... yet I continue to trudge the happy road of destiny.
Wishing you a fabulous week and a fun obstacle course.
Sunday, May 19, 2013
That has been a tough concept to bare in mind these past few weeks. I was reminded many times over those days of the movie 'Eat,Pray, Love'. There is a scene in that movie where the guru explains to the main character that getting knocked off balance is a part of understanding balance, its an acceptable process of learning and life.
I struggled hard with that life lesson these past weeks.
I love meditation in my life. Every night I spend 30-60 minutes in my meditation room going through a guided visual meditation. Each night I choose a new adventure and enjoy greatly the places I journey in my mind. I pray and play in my God box after the mediation and connect deeply with my higher self. I love my evenings spent this way doing my tenth step.
Every morning I begin my day with 15 minutes of chakra balancing and grounding/centering. This starts my day on a balanced note of calm and serenity. I love my morning practice.
I have been unable to do either these past three weeks. No excuses. Every time I tried to go into meditation in the evening I was asleep before the first word whispered out of the speakers of my boombox. I would shake things up and cut out the meditation only to zone out during the readings from my God Box. I felt as if I was insulting my Higher God so I could not proceed. Even just reading through my tenth step questions proved daunting as by the second word in the first question I would already be asleep. In the mornings my mind would not cease the chatter, the meditation would be long since over and my mind would still be lost deep in thought of my new jobs day in action.
My whole practice of connecting to my higher power has been a futile venture this past while and it was a bothersome situation for me. I have grown to cherish my moments with my higher self, look forward to them and come away with such incredible feelings and insight. I hated not having those moments.
|I could hear warnings of the program in my mind..... anything you put before your recovery you will lose..... Everyday do something 12 step related or your addict will thrive..... I was just too damn tired to do any step work, read any literature or even phone a single soul to connect. No matter how hard I tried I just did not have the energy to extend in that direction.
Today as life begins to settle down again I am seeing the larger picture of my past few weeks. They don't say hindsight is 20/20 for nothing.
All the time before starting this job spent in deep ritualistic meditation paved the way for me to make a solid connection with my higher self. That connection is very solid and very true. It is a connection that cannot now be easily broken. Three weeks of changed focus did not abandon my God. She was holding my hand the entire way.
I can feel her deep within me every moment now, I don't need the allotted set aside time to recognize the feelings and thoughts that are hers. I realize today I don't need to talk to her everyday to know she is there and in communication with me any more. I don't need to spend copious amounts of time in ritual invoking her energy so I can understand and feel her love for me. I no longer need to dive so deeply into the roots of mother earth to know I am always connected and grounded in her nurturing. This is what all that energy focussed in meditation gave me. Infancy grown into adolescence.
I am testing my knowledge now. I am taking what my higher self has taught me over the past few months and I am applying it in the real world. I am gaining understanding through experience of her teachings. I am exactly where I need to be on my journey.... I am living life not hiding under the cloak of my God. I am a teenager eager for experience.
My knock off balance has been nothing more then a mother bird pushing her baby out of the nest to teach them to fly. What I was so worried about, losing my routine and stability, has actually proved to be one of the most exciting practices of losing the ground beneath my feet. Why is it that we need something solid to stand upon to feel like we are building a foundation? Birds are one of the oldest known creatures on the planet and they spend most of their lives in the sky. Fish were here before anything and they swim freely with nothing beneath their feet.
I put way to much stock into my grounded foundation that I couldn't see the possibilities of flying to the heavens or swimming with the mermaids. Staying grounded always keeps you forever the baby bird unable to leave momma's safety, always shrouded by Gods cloak... forever the infant. I see now how I have spent the last 38 years as an infant afraid of the ocean. Afraid to open my wings and dive off the tree into the freedom of the air.
I realize today..... it's high time I grow up.
Saturday, May 18, 2013
My life needed shaking up, so for that I am grateful, but to be back here with you, even if its for a brief moment is almost orgasmic for me. You are my personal love.
I thought about reading the Just for Today daily meditation as a topic and then changed my mind to share about how the twelve steps are playing out in my new adventure at work instead.
Applying these principals in all of my affairs is the topic of the day.
I have had two heated, emotional truly terrifying confrontations with both my bosses at my new job and I am only one month into it. Many moments within these past two weeks I have wondered if I had made a terribly wrong choice by stepping into this position for work. I have been pushed to the brink of my physical and emotional limits and can almost say broke my mental limits within this job. It has been challenging, very challenging.
The rewards of these challenges however....... My comfort zone has grown double its width and my confidence within my own being has expanded. I have just been blasted with one of those fucking uncomfortable growth experiences again. Actually two of them back to back.
The first time I went to my bosses with my concerns I could barely get two words out between my ridiculous sobs. I was beyond tired and could not continue at the pace I was going... physically. I needed to vent it out because resentments were threatening to take me out of the job at a fast run. I wanted to quit and never return. I knew quitting has been an insane action of mine my whole life and for things to be different I needed to handle them differently.
It wasn't pretty but I asked to speak to both bosses and let them know I was about to quit cause I couldn't take it any more and I asked for other options because I didn't really want to quit. Before I could get that out nicely though, I had to admit my defects, I had to state my building resentments, I had to ask for help and I had to be willing to accept the guidance. I had worked a fifth step with my bosses about my work practices and didn't even realize it. I practised the principal of turning it over to the powers that be in that situation. Looking at the conversation in hindsight I| realized I almost worked through an entire set of steps within the ten minutes I spoke with them.
The results were better then I could have hoped for. They pulled me off the job I was doing and gave me a job much more suited for me and I was so grateful and happy I could barely contain my gratitude for this company, my life and this program of the twelve steps. In the past I would have bolted and found a new job and decided I hated this field of work and that would have ended that. How limited my mind has always been, until now. I don't even understand how I made it this far in life with the way I used to live it.
That gratitude didn't last long however......
I ran into my next challenge within a few days and found myself once again pushed to my limits and this time anger was building and over flowing into my words and actions with management and co-workers alike.
A specific boss was undermining my ability to do the job and coming at me with cutting remarks. These little slashes of the tongue were renting huge property space in my head and causing me to make mistakes that were to large for me not to lose my job over. As this escalated so did my concerns over being fired for my poor quality of work. I was back in the deep pits of self loathing and stinking thinking.
............An awareness grew for me that dope used to be my answer to all pracitices of destressing and unwinding. Finding new productive ways to let go of stress and find excitement and joy to move my mind away from the things that rent space in my head is my new focus for recovery. When I was off work it was easy to make time and find these solutions. Working ten to twelve hour days presents a new challenge for finding joyous stress releasers.
Thats just a side note...... on with my story....
My great creator and higher power then stepped in as the anger escalated and caused a situation that brought about an uncontrollable stab of my own tongue into my bosses side. This caused a bit of a roar and another sit down with both bosses. This time I was the focus of the emotional spewage. Not backing down I again stated my frustration over the way I was being spoken too by this one particular boss and it turns out this concern had already been stated by other staff as well. I was heard and the problem was rectified in that moment.
However what came out of that second sit down was my own blaring defect/personality trait of being highly sensitive. My boss was frustrated by how sensitive I am and I agree'd that I do have issues with this my self. I don't like that I take everything personally, that every small gesture gets taken in to the deepest regions of my soul, that I love hard and hurt equally as hard...... but that is me and no matter how hard I have worked at turning it over to God, it is part of who I am.
I have learned that not all defects get removed just because we want them gone, they are part of who we are and we must learn to work them to our advantage. After the blow out in the morning that day, both bosses spoke to me separately about my sensitivity. I expressed my own concern with this trait of mine and how hard it is for me to find a job where its not an issue. The owner boss stated that he did not want this quality of mine squashed because on the flip side of the tears was great laughter and wonderful energy that lead the other staff to smile and laugh more. The other boss also gets the opportunity to manage in a new softer way, learning to handle different staff in different ways. It was a win win for all involved.
I was validated.
I am learning to stand in the truth of who I am in all situations in my life. I am beginning to accept and stand up for who I am. As I write this tears again threaten to erupt. I am proud of this person I am growing into. I am amazed by my own abilities to embrace, nurture and support myself. Walking away from work yesterday after being awarded three days off to recoup and with both managers approval of who I am, I am again beyond grateful for what the Twelve steps have taught me not only about who I am but how to deal effectively with life on lifes terms.
Work it because your worth it...... has new meaning for me today. I am worth it..... but working it is fucking hard! I deserve my three days off.
.......... and now boys and girls I am outta here to get my house cleaned( I would like to see the white of my tub again)...... so I can go love my beautiful little girl and have some fun in the sun!!!
Happy trails my friends!
Sunday, May 5, 2013
Principals before personalities
Our common unity comes first person recovery depends on it
Mountains out of mole hills
These are all the issues I am dealing with as I face life on life's terms in my new Job.
I have missed you guys tremendously, I must say that first. Everyday I think of this blog and what I want to write, yet find myself too utterly exhausted at the end of my work day to get my fingers floating across the keyboard. I would do it early in the morning if I didn't leave so early. Ten hour days, working my body beyond anything I have ever done before.... I am ass kicked by the end of the day.
I am entirely grateful to my program of twelve steps and traditions. It is through the learnings and understandings of those concepts that I have been able to move through my new job outside of the fellowship of recovery. It is these learnings that I can transfer into all of my affairs and become a truly productive member of society.... Although I gots to tell ya, It's not bloody easy. I feel like this ol' brain is being forced into a new direction and it's rebelling at every turn.
My new job aside from being physically demanding has also put me in a position of power. Finding balance between staying in my own higher power and letting my ego grab that power has been a bit of a struggle for me. With anything new there is a certain level of fear involved. Where there is any fear my ego is hot on the trail. Instead of suggesting things to my crew I find I am dictating. Instead of encouraging I am criticising. These are not my normal traits for dealing with co-workers. By the end of the week my days were longs and miserable.
Waking up this morning I was in self kicking ass mode, In my head beating the shit out of myself for being such an ego maniac all week. Desperately trying to hand it over to my higher power. Making mountains out of mole hills. I sometimes forget the larger picture and get lost in the details. There are far larger problems in the world right this very moment to help me put my little power struggle into perspective..... like the day I walked into the rooms of my twelve step fellowship, completely broken from the mass destruction I made of my life. This is small potatoes compared to that, yet my mind is worked way up about it.
I am reminded of placing the common unity of my Crew over my ego issues. The success of my entire team will benefit from placing that unity above my own issues of power and control. I have been dictating the way to do things and what to do and when to do them. I am no longer attracting my crew to follow my lead I am promoting it. These are all concepts I was aware of going into this position, yet seem to have lost track of the past few days. I have become a dictator not a leader.
H.A.L.T is another acronym that I was aware would become an issue with starting this job that I lost focus of as well. I let myself get hungry yesterday and my day went to hell in a pretty little hand basket. Anger started to rise and I couldn't extinguish it. I have stopped talking to my higher power and was feeling lonely, without realizing it.... and hot damn I was way beyond tired. This allowed a co-workers personality to become greater then the principal of working as a team.
Man all these realizations of just how much this program has given me is way beyond my scope of gratitude right now. Upon the answers flooding my mind this morning after surrendering it, tears have threatened to wash me clean of all the stress I have inflicted upon myself this past week. I am always amazed at how hard I am on myself, how down right mean I can be in my own head about my own body, mind and emotions. I should be showing myself the most love, the most kindness and compassion. It's not egotistical to love one self and to treat oneself with compassion. I respect others greater then I respect myself... thats just ass backwards.
I have learned a lot this past week and look forward to my day off today. For the next few weeks I am afraid to say, only one post a week will be what I can afford. Hopefully things will settle into a routine and my body will begin to adjust and I wont be so wiped at the end of the day. I do truly enjoy to write and derive great benefit from it.
Have a great week, Lots of love to you on your journey!!