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Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Yearly physical


clean bill of health;

normal blood pressure,
low cholesterol,
ideal weight,
indigestion free.

mental & emotional status

calm,
reasonable,
contented,
secure,
rational

A large part of the reward of continued recovery.
each element happening slowly but steadily.

who do I thank?
God, AA, sponsor, rehab, Prospect House, Deb, prayer, service...?
All the above are responsible for putting together the puzzle
that my recovery consists of.



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Monday, April 28, 2008

Dark


I had to share these heartfelt words from my friend Sandi...


Dark

It's dark in here
this place I know
not cold
not warm
just dark
then empty.
Most people think empty feels cold
but it doesn't
if it were cold it wouldn't be empty
empty is just that
empty.
And sometimes
It feel better that way
but just for a moment
a very brief moment
then comes the longing for warmth
for touch
for something.
Even coldness is then welcome
because it's something.
It's cold in here
cold and dark
no longer empty
this is where hope is born
in the cold
where I pray I have the strength
to await the warmth
that grows
from hope.

Sandra T.


Thank you for allowing me to post your view
of a place I have been in, and relate to.


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Saturday, April 26, 2008

Maturity

Often the missing element of some folks in sobriety...maturity.

Sure it's been 99 years since their last drink, but are they long-winded
when sharing, selfish with emotions or mean-spirited?
Too often I encounter old timers who wear their sobriety like a badge
to display and wield power. In my eyes neither sober nor mature.

I still give kudos to anyone who can stay substance free, provided
they maintain some semblance of humility.

While growing up isn't always as much fun as acting out, it is
essential and rewarding to truly show the newcomer the
benefits of continued recovery.



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Wednesday, April 23, 2008

take time



Take Time:
Take time to think-
It is the source of all power.
Take time to read-
It is the fountain of wisdom.

Take time to play-
It is the source of perpetual youth.
Take time to be quiet-
It is the opportunity to seek God.

Take time to be aware-
It is the opportunity to help others.
Take time to love and be loved-
It is God’s greatest gift.

Take time to laugh-
It is the music of the soul.
Take time to be friendly-
It is the road to happiness.

Take time to dream-
It is what the future is made of.
Take time to pray-
It is the greatest power on earth.

Take time to give-
It is too short a day to be selfish.
Take time to work-
It is the price of success.
There is a time for everything. . . .[Ecclesiastes 3:1-8]Bible

some good advice for mankind & a must for anyone in recovery.

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Monday, April 21, 2008

today's thought

Being happy doesn’t mean that everything is perfect. It means that you’ve decided to look beyond the imperfections.

So true, and not always to do.

Perception is a crucial element of how we deal
with life's everyday challenges.

It takes a discerning eye to realize the good things in our lives
we overlook on a daily basis.

If not for the clouds and rain can we really appreciate the sun?




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Saturday, April 19, 2008

Growing up...

Still the most elusive facet of recovery.

In the rooms I see dozens of folks who continue to show up,
profess to work the steps, pray and help others.
The behaviors I witness concerning petty gossip, dishonesty
with employers, spouses and friends, belie the words I hear.
It reminds me of church-goers who attend services once a week,
yet treat their fellow man poorly the other 6 days.
Not very spiritual or mature.

We all hear of the importance of honesty in the program; but it
has to apply to all our affairs, not just the ones we are comfortable with.
It's not always the easier way, but it is essential to continued growth
in recovery


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Wednesday, April 16, 2008

King Baby Revisited



I think every alky-addict has some king baby traits.
There is the emotional growth stunting, selfishness,
immaturity and insecurity.

Of course the world centers around us; we want what
we can't have, and want it now.
Since alcohol or drugs are a comfort and companion,
we are very resistant to giving them up.
No matter how destructive and isolating addiction gets,
we are the last to see or feel it.

The dishonest and sneaky habits we used are similar
to childish behaviors from early on to get our own way.
King baby feels immune to the accountability and
responsibility of acting their age.

lastly KB resorts to acting out by crying or screaming
to get their wants heard.





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Friday, April 11, 2008

promises; myths & realities



THE A.A. PROMISES

If we are painstaking about this phase of our development, we will be amazed before we are half way through. We are going to know a new freedom and a new happiness. We will not regret the past nor wish to shut the door on it. We will comprehend the word serenity and we will know peace. No matter how far down the scale we have gone, we will see how our experience can benefit others. That feeling of uselessness and selfpity will disappear. We will lose interest in selfish things and gain interest in our fellows. Self-seeking will slip away. Our whole attitude and outlook upon life will change. Fear of people and of economic insecurity will leave us. We will intuitively know how to handle situations which used to baffle us. We will suddenly realize that God is doing for us what we could not do for ourselves.
Are these extravagant promises? We think not. They are being fulfilled among us—sometimes quickly, sometimes slowly. They will always materialize if we work for them.

Promises or possibilities?

new freedom yes
happiness no happiness is not a result of sobriety; it is a choice
regret the past possibly
comprehend serenity yes
know peace possibly
self pity gone possibly
become unselfish possibly
self seeking possibly
attitude yes
fear of people partially; if those people are bill collectors or the police
economic insecurity no; if you were a poor money manager drinking, you will most likely be
one sober
handle situations possibly
god is doing what we could not no; your recovery is not dependent on any other person, divine or not except yourself
quickly or slowly yes
always materialize no; true only for the 5% who are fortunate enough to maintain sobriety

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Thursday, April 10, 2008

Addiction

from Addiction Science Network;

What is drug addiction? Considerable confusion exists regarding the nature of addiction. The most common misunderstanding is that addiction refers to a state of physical dependence on a drug whereby discontinuing drug intake produces a withdrawal syndrome consisting of various somatic disturbances. Addiction is better defined as a behavioral syndrome where drug procurement and use seem to dominate the individual’s motivation and where the normal constraints on behavior are largely ineffective. This condition may or may not be accompanied by the development of physical dependence on the drug. This condition has also been described as a "psychological" addiction (thus distinguishing it from physical dependence archaically termed "physical" addiction), but confusion is minimized by using the term addiction to refer to the behavioral syndrome described above and the term physical dependence to refer to the condition associated with somatic withdrawal reactions. The distinguishing feature of the condition commonly referred to as addiction is the ability of the drug to dominate the individual’s behavior, regardless of whether physical dependence is also produced by the drug.

good explanation of the nature of addiction.
there are many misconceptions about the malady.
be wary of well-meaning old timers, who insist you
can pray away addiction.




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Sunday, April 6, 2008

Vegas recap




flew in from mesa thursday; short hop,

just over an hour.

A quick taxi ride to Imperial Palace and

here I am.


Met up with the couple getting married

at Caesar's Palace across the street.

The place is huge; would take hours to

walk the entire complex.


Later that night, a walk along the strip.

Great lights and sights and thousands of

people.


Unless you're a gambler, drinker, shopper

or marathon walker, it's no big deal.

Wedding was beautiful, fun reception and no alcohol served.

Wagered $2.00 on a slot machine, lost it all, but got a free soda!


Back in arizona, with deb, steph & kids...let the fun begin.

In the pool, away from the crowds, working on my vitamin D intake.

life is good, snow is bad, drunks are funny.

what happens in vegas(including your money) stays in vegas



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Wednesday, April 2, 2008

from Psychology Today


a very informative article about the disease concept, and how
it may contribute to relapse.
it is refreshing to read a new outlook on an outmoded concept.
I have always been skeptical about the whole disease model.

Viewing alcoholism as a disease may contribute to relapse.

TOP PICKS


Recovery programs have long promoted the "disease model" of alcoholism--the idea that some people have a medical condition that does not allow them to drink without losing control. One alcohol-abuse expert has found that belief in this model may actually hamper efforts to quit drinking.

William Miller, Ph.D., professor of psychology at the University of New Mexico and a researcher at its Center on Alcoholism, Substance Abuse, and Addictions (CASAA), studied 122 people enrolled in the center to find out what predicted relapse into alcohol use. Negative mood, intense and frequent cravings, and lack of motivation to change all qualified--but one of the strongest predictors was whether people thought of alcoholism as an illness.

It may not be belief in the disease model that causes relapse, says Miller, but the reverse: people who find abstinence difficult to maintain may take comfort in attributing their lapses to an illness they can't control. Although research supports the idea of an inherited vulnerability to alcoholism, Miller contends that the "the disease model, in the way that Americans usually think about it, is not scientifically validated."

At CASAA, excessive drinking is viewed as a learned behavior that can be changed, especially by improving coping and social skills. In Miller's study, for example, the number of negative life events an alcoholic experienced was less important to his prognosis than how he dealt with them: active coping styles and positive thinking were associated with staying sober, while the tendency to avoid or ignore problems was linked to a return to the bottle.





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Tuesday, April 1, 2008

harm reduction & celebrity DUI

some good info from Stanton Peele on the principle
of harm reduction as it relates to addiction.
latest celeb caught driving drunk is Richie Sambora.

Peele writes;

Like most current substance abusers, Sambora has been exposed to Alcoholics Anonymous and its abstinence uber alles philosophy. Last year, he entered rehab, and he has announced that he is continuing alcohol treatment.

As Sanbora's case illustrates, however, few people exposed to such treatment actually then abstain forever. George Vaillant, Harvard psychiatrist and AA board member, discovered when following up Cambridge Hospital patients he treated using the twelve steps, including mandatory AA attendance, that 95 percent relapsed.

(Nothing daunted, Dr. Vaillant continues to flack AA and the religiously-oriented steps. At a conference in Vancouver where we were both presented with lifetime achievement awards, I asked George publicly what he thought of harm reduction. He declined to answer.)

the article goes on to explain examples of harm reduction, such as the needle exchange
program, designated drivers and such.

just another example of the difficulty of maintaining sobriety after rehab
and AA, for anyone, regardless of social or economic status.

About Me

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Canaan, Ct, United States
Retired Bridgeport,CT Fire Dept.Lt.,operating Prospect House Northwest Transitional Living for men & women in recovery since 2001.also a Fitness & nutrition consultant.

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