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The Great Obsession …

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It is a sad day in the recovery community. But is it really? Millions of people each day die from the effects of alcohol or drugs. For the most part we just let that fact go in one ear and out the other. But we should be alarmed and concerned that addiction takes far too many people in any given year.

Cory Monteith – it was confirmed today, died of an overdose of heroine and alcohol.

It is a tragic loss of such a young life, to addiction. Smack is a killer. But so is alcohol, and when mixed becomes a lethal concoction.

My friend Alex asked this question the other day …

“Did he know that Saturday was going to be his last day on earth?” And “What was going on in his head that he could not just say NO???”

We talked about this subject before the meeting. And the topic came from the Big Book – More about alcoholism… And the great obsession, that one day, we would be able to drink like normal people…

How do you get sober in Hollywood and stay sober, when everybody parties and bar hops and lives life to the fullest. Why deprive ones self the social aspect of living with your costars and friends?

Just a few months out of rehab, that is the most dicey period of a sober persons journey. If you don’t sink into the program right away, your success at staying stopped diminishes by the day and the hour.

Well, I can go to a bar and not drink, but when it comes to mad hatter smack, I just can’t say NO. How many people do I know, or knew, that have died from such an addiction in my life? MANY …

And we say in closing:

“Eternal rest grant him and may perpetual light shine upon him.”

It is just sad.

I’ve seen big names get sober. I’ve met them in meetings, here and in other places. Most of them have succeeded in staying stopped and are successful at their craft. But we will never get to see this now dead, young person, succeed in his craft, because of heroine and alcohol.

Today … for me … the thought of a drink or a drug is far from my mind. My greatest obsession is that one day I would be able to do anything like a normal person.

But what is normal ?

I don’t know what normal is.

Another friend spoke today about having things and being happy … he writes:

I’d like to live as a poor man with lots of money.

~ Pablo Picasso
I recall a Peanuts comic in which Linus announced that when he grew up he wanted to be very successful, very famous and very humble. Successful, famous, humble. Charlie Brown just walked away muttering, “Good luck with that.”
Living in the monastery for thirty years taught me how to live as a poor man … with lots of money. I didn’t have much in the way of cash, no personal bank account or credit card, no car of my own and such. On the other hand, I had incredible amounts of security — great health insurance, a car available to me almost any time, a guaranteed roof over my head and three square meals a day, a graduate-level education, plenty of work I enjoyed and the freedom to arrange my own work schedule most of the time.

Not sure that I have a point here. Just that peace of mind does not depend on having a lot of money, but it sure is connected to how safe one feels and how much one feels in control of one’s life. And we keep searching for the thing that will give us control — money, weapons, power. None of that works. A wise and experienced nun told me once that she had come to realize that life was all about letting go. We live in a culture where life seems to be mostly about grabbing on.

Let go. Breathe. Smile.

Being poor in today’s world is the great fear of many people. Not having food in the fridge or money in your pocket is an obsession. Worrying about where your next meal is coming from or when you will have money to purchase things you need, when at the moment you have none, is my problem.

I am powerless over people, places and things.

It was far more important for my hubby to sit here week in and week out watching that goddamned George Zimmerman trial, night and day, around the clock, rather than spend that time using his efforts in finding a job, which he has failed to do as of yet. But we said those vows.

In sickness and in health for richer or for poorer. Till death do us part.

So I am stuck in a situation that I did not create. But maybe I did, maybe I should have been a cast iron bitch and become bitter and controlling. Shooting my mouth off and loosing my temper.

In as many years in sobriety, I have only lost my temper, truly, twice in twelve tears. And never at home.

Yes, I am disappointed. And over dinner the other night, I voiced my displeasure and I let it go at that. I had to, because if I didn’t let it go, the hamster would get on the wheel and the obsession would take hold and I would end up insane and crazy and wanting something to cut the edge off.

It is good that when I got up this morning and things were in the tank, I picked up my phone and called a friend, who carted me to and from the meeting tonight. It is good that at the meeting I go to on Tuesday nights, are other men my age who I can talk to and a couple of men with serious sober time who are wise and tell me how it is and what I need to do to change things.

I can’t get that same advice in a room full of women. I just don’t think pissing and moaning in a room full of women is going to do me any good. Not at the moment.

So I am winging it . one day at a time . one moment at a time .

That is all.

More to come, stay tuned …

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