Loving the Sacred through Word and Image. The Ferryland – New Foundland Iceberg Easter 2017. A Word Press Production.

Oprah’s Master Class

Sunday Sundries … Acceptance … Do Right !!!

tumblr_m030k5TPq01qi4msqo1_500 rockthesox

Courtesy:Rockthesox

The weekend is coming to a close. And it was a stellar day today. God has been shining love and sunshine on us. The streets and highways are all torn up due to construction, and streets are closed due to the Tour D’lisle today.

Our folks are getting to practice Patience and Serenity in spades.

It was a great weekend.

Oprah’s Masterclass is on. Earlier was an encore presentation of Maya Angelou, and now Whoopi is sharing. It was important to listen to Maya again to remind me of how I am supposed to live(rightly), to know who I am, (a Child of God) and how to treat others, (when you know right, Do right).

It was a regular Sunday afternoon. The top of the month brought new faces to the rotation, and at the end of the meeting brought new folks who want to join. We are carrying the message and attracting folks from far and wide.

One of our founding members has left us for a new home in New Brunswick. So we are in hand off mode. New people in responsible positions to take care of the group and its expenses.

We read from the Big Book tonight, and the most (well one of the most) important chapters in the book. “Acceptance was the Answer.” We sat a huge group and we had decided to read half way and open the room to discussion. That was a good decision. We went the whole period and went over a bit in order to give everyone a chance to share.

The really Good Stuff comes in the second part of the reading … Pages 416-417.

“Acceptance is the key to ALL my problems and Nothing, Absolutely Nothing happens in God’s world by mistake.”

These two sentences bring about all kinds of thinking, more thinking and denial and discussion, and finally, in time, Acceptance.

Most folks cannot square their pasts with Nothing happens in God’s  world by mistake. As in God had a plan, and we were merely actors in the grand scheme of things. But this share has to wait until next week.

Today we heard the insanity portion of the read. A doctor and his inability to “get it.” Only a good doctor knows how to prescribe all the right pills for what ailed him. And the insanity of having to manage the right mix of alcohol, pills, uppers and downers – what a nightmare.

Finally, in his story he comes to sobriety, after traveling a very circuitous route. And he says at one point … “I sat down with me” in all his insanity and someone shared on this saying that her sponsor says to this portion that that is “an Idiot speaking to an asshole.”

I know when I came back, I couldn’t sit with me very well. I needed someone to sit with me until the guilt and shame left me and I had to eventually dig myself out of self pity, my friends all stayed with me.

There are some things that in hindsight become important for people in early sobriety. And I did not see these things as important until a couple of years ago.

Yes, the Big Book has its method. It is written in a specific order, and the steps come in an order as well. And that’s the way we are supposed to read it. The stories in the back of the book are just gravy on a plate of meat and potatoes.

But working with others bring challenges. I want my guys to learn about themselves AS they work their steps and hit meetings.

We speak once a day.
We hit meetings together.
They work their steps.

At night they write 10th steps. Even though they are not there yet. They write in the beginning, from the beginning, so that they get used to writing. And each day we have something to talk about. And that is kindling for our weekly discussions that take place once a week.

Also, There are chapters in the back of the book that folks should be made aware of because, it is only my opinion, but there are crucial lessons in the back of the book that we need to hear from the beginning, because in the long run, knowing certain truths and axioms, pay off in spades when they get further into their steps.

And we (at the Sunday meeting) are working our way through the back of the book as we speak, and my guys are on Steps 4 and 2 respectively.

I want my guys to come away from The Work feeling accomplished and that their lives are changed by the process of The Work.

It was a good night. People came by the droves. Everybody had a great time.

More to come, stay tuned …

 


Master Class Special … Many Voices …

 

It has been a while since my last installment of Oprah’s Masterclass episodes. And tonight was a special edition of the very popular series revisiting the Masters for pieces of wisdom that did not make it to original air. And so let us begin…

The First Lesson … Knowing who you are …

It is very important for us, as we grow to know who we are and to figure out the road we are supposed to be walking. We gather all this life information as we grow into the people that we are, and so we ask “Do you know who you are?”

The Second Lesson … In order to know where you are going, you need to know where you came from…

We all grew up somewhere, in a family and in that family we learned certain things about life and of ourselves, and depending on the way you were raised you come away from that experience with certain knowledge that will carry you into your adulthood. You have to know where you came from to know where you are going.

The Third Lesson … Learning from Failure …

In life, there are good times and there are bad times. We have known successes and we have known failures. But what did we learn from both successes and failures ? Yes, we probably have seen great heights, and most probably, we have seen great lows. But like Morgan Freeman says, “get back up, and Don’t give up.” Keep Trying … When we fall, we must get back up and dust ourselves off and get on with life. To sit there licking ones wounds and commiserating about our failure, we should get up, look back and learn from that failure so that we don’t make that mistake again, and to learn the lesson that came from that failure.

The Fourth Lesson … Leave Room for Serendipity …

Goldie Hawn tells us that yes, in life we have goals and we make these goals and set them up for ourselves and we point ourselves in that direction, BUT we must leave room for twists and turns, lefts and rights. If we are too rigid in our lives, we might miss the nuance or the gentle stirrings of spirit that might take us in a direction that might lend to our journeys. It is not always a straight shot up, but quite possibly a long and winding road to get to where we are going.It is being able to be adept to hearing the still small voice that might say “this way for now…” It is always about the journey, not in the destination, but the journey to get there.

Lesson Five … Love Liberates …

This is the lesson about letting go. The one thing a mother or father can do for their children is to let them go. So that they can fly, and test the waters of life, to learn and make mistakes. Yes, we might still want to hold on to them, but in essence, we must let them go.

Maya Angelou speaks of the day she left home at 17 with her son saying … “Momma I am going … to which she replied, Once you step over the threshold, you are grown. Take what you have learned here and go on with your life. Don’t let anyone else raise you!” Love liberates, it does not hold us fast.

Lesson Six… Everything begins with an intention …

Everything we do in this life, begins with an intention. And we say to ourselves that, I think I will do this, or Maybe I will do that, and quite possibly, I should do that instead … The thought precedes the action. But what action will we take?

Lesson Seven … Dream Big …

God can dream a bigger dream for you than you can dream for yourself.

If there is one thing we can do well, it is dream. It is the one thing that keeps us on the path of knowledge and learning and experience. It is SOOO important that we dream, and dream big. There is nothing sadder in the words of Jon Bon Jovi that to watch someone crush the dreams of someone else. Go out and do it, and do it BIG. If you are going to do it, do it BIG !!!

Lesson Eight … Do Right …

There is right and there is wrong. And we should know by now, that right is right and wrong is wrong. And once you know what is right, you can do right. Maya Angelou says that “Once you know right, do right, it will satisfy your soul, so just do right.”

Lesson Nine … What Matters to You ???

There is nothing more important than doing what matters to us. We all have a calling in this life. Have we settled for what we are doing, or are we striving to find that one thing that will be the one thing that matters to us the most?

Examine your life, all the good things and all the failures and look at all the things you have done in your life, and see what you will do next. Life is a perpetual journey that is ever changing. And there is always “the next thing,’ Once you climb one mountain or reached a certain summit, there is another mountain waiting to be scaled.

Lesson Ten … Always wake up Curious …

Life is no bore, for many. And if we are stuck in a certain rut, maybe it is time to wake up curious. To relight that fire within us and to find the curious things that fire our imaginations. There must be something that drives you forwards.

Lesson Eleven … Did you make a difference …

If people speak of you and they say damn, him or her or my goodness he or she is this or that, you’ve done it wrong. But if people speak of you and they speak good things of you then you have made a difference.

Did you make a difference in the lives of others that you surround yourself with? Did you take the time to walk with them, to listen to them, to celebrate with them and quite possibly, to mourn with them?

They say that is someone is walking a mile, then walk two miles with them. It is always important that we take the time to make a difference in another life, other than our own.

Lesson Twelve … Life Doesn’t Stop …

Jane Fonda reminds us that just because we are growing older, doesn’t mean that life is over with, that there is nothing left to do or to experience. There is always something around the corner to experience and do. With all the wisdom that you have accrued in your life, now you can take all that wisdom and apply it to the next thing that comes along in your life.

We can look at our lives as they have been lived, and we can see where things were good and where they were bad. We have learned lessons along the way and we figured out who we were and what it is that we were meant to do in this life.

And with all those teachings under our belts, we can move into the next stage of our lives, and if we need to make a change, make that change, but don’t forget to dream big. Oprah says either Go Big or Go Home … There are so many things we can do for ourselves and for each other. If we look at our lives as a class, what is it in our life that we would want to teach others?

What is the one thing that you would like to teach that is the most important lesson to you?

I hope you take something away from this and be able to apply something to your life.


I just want to be happy …

Courtesy:Rawrdaniel

Two posts in one night, not unheard of, but still …3 a.m. Thought bubble.

It was an Oprah kind of night. And tonight’s Master Class was Goldie Hawn. I really enjoy these little Master Classes, because I can watch them and really identify and utilize some of the things they speak about.

Her first words … I just want to be happy, was a goal. It was something she wanted to do. It was all very ideal and perfect, then life happened.

I wanted all those ideal things too. A family, 2.5 children, a home, a dog or two and the ideal life. All those things you learned in Home Economics about the American Dream. I thought my parents had it. And they did have it.

And when I grew up, I thought that I would have it too. Then life happened. I went where the wind took me and I ended up here. And I was ready to start building. I think I needed a little more time to mature, that’s why it took me so long to figure out that I wanted to be happy. It is a very simple recipe. But it didn’t happen until I was well into my 30’s to figure it out.

And now I am in my 40’s and I think I am relatively happy. There is nothing that I don’t need. I am content with what I have today and I need nothing more. I live my life, I do what I can, I serve my community and my marriage. And everything comes back full circle. Because it is in giving that we receive. The road map came courtesy of the program…

Throughout her storytelling she spoke about a road map, and what she learned from her father. To be grounded in life. Not to get too big for your britches… And if you think you are going there, to be reminded that you are here in this moment. and that’s what life is “a series of moments” strung together, and one moment is not more important than the next.

Awards and accolades are nice to get. But they are in but a moment of time. She spoke of not living off the award or accolade, but living true to ones self. Living in the moment. Savoring each moment.

I learned some things from my father as well. He was a good teacher on a good day and he did share somethings along the way. I learned how to take care of a home from the inside out. How to make an honest dollar, and he was the man of the house and there was no other to learn from but him.

He was a man of his times. And not much growth came of that time. He was set in his ways and that was that and that’s how he remained for the rest of my life. Nothing new under the sun.

But what defines us? What makes us “US?”

I am who I am because of my morals, and my integrity. I am me because of what I have learned in this life, and what I have to give back. All the lessons I have learned in as many years are evident in the way I speak to others, how I treat them and how I treat my husband in my own marriage.

There are a multitude of people who have taught me about myself. Years of self education and reeducation came at a high cost. We are all works in progress.

What do I know about myself ? I know a lot.

Goldie says that there is a gift in growing older … There is a surprise…

When we grow older, the surprise is what we still have to contribute to the world around us. As long as we are living and breathing we have the opportunity to give back to the world something we have been given.

And that is the SURPRISE !!!

That we can give back, until that time we decide to stop. And we expire.

We may not all be young and perky but we are older adults who now have an opportunity to give back the gifts that were given and taught to us in our lives, because there are plenty of people out there who need to hear what we have to say. Because everyone has something special to say. We all have that gift, our life. And life is not to be taken for granted. In every life there comes a time when we have reached a point that we are ready to put it all out there.

We do that in the program. We give what was freely given to us. We serve, we speak, we thank, and we serve some more. Service is a never ending process.

Who are you ? What makes you “YOU ?”

And what do you have to give back ??? Ok, then go and do it …


Living on Borrowed Time … 2012 prospectus …

Courtesy: Fashionisineveryone

I’ve been to New york City. I’ve stood in Time Square and drank it all in. But I’ve never been to Time Square on New Years Eve. I mean once you get penned in, what if you have to pee ??? What do you do??? Where do you go with millions of people being penned in at the same time. Where do they go??? It’s a conundrum.

One day maybe …

I learn something new every day. And sometimes it takes a conversation to make that a truth. I have very few friends I talk to on a regular basis. I see people at meetings and I know them on Facebook, but only a handful of people make use of my time.

I said this after I turned 40 that there came a change in myself. I began to realize that I “knew” things. Truly as the nose on my face. I began to realize that I had enough experience behind me that I could speak to people from a place of experience and not just spout bullshit to hear myself speak.

And that came with age. It also comes with experience. Some of my wisdom came by way of teaching that I was given over the years just after my AIDS diagnosis. I learned how to read people. You had to know how to do this when dealing with the public having a red X on your face, knowing you were soon to die, that you didn’t waste time with people who did not matter to you because wasted time was just that wasted time. I use this little nugget of truth in my daily life now in sobriety. And the gift is only enhanced the longer I am sober.

Because as I grow up as a man, and as I grow in sobriety, and having lived this long with AIDS, if you are a waste of time, I am not going to waste my time with you. I can spot bullshit at 50 paces and in sobriety this is very useful.

My sponsor is apt to say that there are people with time who are sober in number only. And at first glance you should respect everybody on their personal journey because you never know what they have been through and everyone’s life is important.

The drawback here is that people with SOBER time comport themselves differently. There are people with time who clearly have not invested in their own sobriety enough to grow up and it shows when they open their mouths and you get to know them over time, and you see what gifts have manifested themselves in them. There are many people with time, that I know, who are clearly not SOBER.

I attribute this ability to see and hear with the combination of factors that I have lived with for more than half my life. I was taught the lessons in my mid twenties. And you hear the lesson and you get to perfect it over time. And because I have lived so long – I have learned to perfect it to a degree that is sometimes scary, even to myself.

Then, you get to hear new lessons, based on the originals from a new teacher. And you hear the lesson, again, and you take the knowledge you have and you expand that knowledge on top of the new lesson you are hearing. And that makes your personal arsenal of tools even greater and stronger.

Every time we work our steps we uncover a layer from our lives. We peel back another layer of the onion. And this is a continual process, it is not done in one fell swoop. You don’t work your steps on the first go and take the plunge and do the BIG DIG and expect to survive the process. What comes to the surface on this pass is what we deal with. And only that. It isn’t brain surgery.

Can you tell I am working steps with sponsees? Every conversation I have with them gives me an opportunity to reflect on these thoughts over again. I don’t often get to use certain tools until the opportunity arises and they come to bear.

I have begun to live my best life. I have listened to lessons on self, and others. I am responsible for the energy I give out and the energy I bring to myself. When people show you who they are the first time, believe them. And when bullshit opens its mouth and speaks, call it for what it is. BULLSHIT !!!

Sometimes when the dynamic isn’t just right, and you get that HMMM… Something just isn’t right, I see it. I see it now. And I can recognize it. Then I have a choice. I can stay in that situation or I can extricate myself from it. This is a new tool for me. It’s only recently that I have had the opportunity to put the lesson into action.

We are amid steps 6,7,and 8 now. Character defects and shortcomings. The task of making the list for ourselves. For every negative defect there is a positive attribute that one can aspire to. I’d like to think that I work on my defects on a daily basis. And as well my shortcomings.

I think being in a relationship for so long has afforded me the opportunity to make changes in my life in the way I relate to my husband and others. We’ve been together going on 11 years now, and marriage changes everything. And hubby’s Bi-Polar diagnosis and treatment was a game changer.You either take it on full force and you become a man, or you walk away and leave them to deal with in on their own. I decided to stick and stay.

I was committed to him from the day we met. I knew the very day we started dating that he was the man I would spend the rest of my life with. And it began with that idea. I never imagined that it would have taken us to this point in our lives, but relationships are organic and they change over time.

Illness changes everything.

I did not have much to work with when he got sick. I knew very little, but where there is a will there is a way. The one thing I kept doing was going to meetings. I had good people in my life who gave me sound advice. I learned how to care for another human being. From the bottom of my heart, from sun up to sun down.

If I tell you that all that I was had been purged and tested under fire, I mean just that. With Explicit certainty. I was only a couple of years sober when this all started and I had to stay one step ahead of the wave and meetings gave that to me. All those negative character defects were purged. Because you get sober and you go to work, and you give and you learn, and from that comes love. Of self, others and of God.

I may not have known at the time what was going on, but now that I look at it from this perspective over the years, all those negative defects and shortcoming are shown to me in vivid detail every day I live with my husband. And when I miss something, hubby is right there to remind me who I am and what is important to the both of us. So I’ve had a number of years to continually work on these lists.

I go to meetings, I share, I talk to my sponsor and I work with others. It is not an exact science, and opportunities to work with others might be just presence at a meeting, or really getting into the mud and dirt with a sponsee and working it all out with them. And over the years I can count on one hand the people who have given me this opportunity.

They have even begun to critique me while I sit in meetings. They have told me of certain things I do, certain foibles and actions that occur when I sit and listen to people share. It seems my bullshit meter manifests itself openly, and if you pay attention to me for any length of time, it will appear. This is very unsettling because it is not something I do openly or with knowledge. It just happens.

I would like to think that my marriage has afforded me certain gifts of becoming the man I want to be, because I give of myself 100% every day of my life where my husband is concerned. And he tells me when he needs something specific and we talk all the time about what is going on. And when he sees something wrong, he speaks his mind. He is sober as well, but because of extenuating circumstances and his choice, he does not go to meetings. But he knows when I need a meeting and he tells me so every so often, he makes sure that I do what I need to do for myself every day.

Mental illness is not kind.

It takes from both the sufferer and the partners involved in their lives. There are challenges and there are good moments. And after a med change we wait for things to get better. Meds can be brutal and I must be present emotionally as well as physically. I don’t have time to waste on needless issues of self. I don’t have time to feed my ego or be an ass. And some may say I have a huge ego. I don’t know if that is true. Only one person in the last ten years went head to head with me over their ego and I survived them and so did our meeting.

When I got up to speak a few weeks ago, it was a very humbling experience. Because no matter how much thought I put into what I wanted to say, in the end what came out was what was necessary to get my message across and that is not my ego at all. When you open yourself up to a room full of people and you make declarative statements of coming out to strangers both as gay and living with AIDS it changes you and it changes them.

And like I stated above, once you say the words, you can never take them back.

You then get to witness how people begin to act around you. And like I have said, I can spot bullshit at 50 paces. I always wait for contempt and the sly eye look, because you can see it in people’s eyes. And in their stance, and the way they speak after the fact. And I have to say that I have never met a more genuine bunch of people as I have at Friday West End. And I am ever blessed to have them in my life.

I don’t know why I used the title above, because this hasn’t been a post about resolutions or and wishful thinking. So I changed the title now …

Resolutions are useless when you live on borrowed time. I could die tomorrow, and that is the truth. I have a terminal disease that could take me at any time. Normal humans don’t live with this kind of sentence. They have no idea what I live with on a daily basis. So I usually don’t make New Years Resolutions.

I strive every day to be present for my husband because he is my greatest joy, ten times around and twice on Sunday. The rule is if I make it to my birthday in July, I will live to see Christmas in December. And If I live through Christmas in December, I will live to see my next birthday. And that is how I live my life, after so many years of learning how to live on Borrowed Time.

What do I want to do in 2012??? I want to finish school at the top of my game. I want to be a better husband. There is always room for improvement as I get soberer. I want hubby to finish his MA and make a decision on what we will do next! Because I am just waiting on him to tell me where we will be going from here, whether we stay here or we move, whether he gets a teaching gig and we remain living here. As long as I can get money to study then that’s the most beneficial way to live. And as long as there is money I will study.

My spiritual director has plans for me that I have shared with you already. And those plans are long haul plans and will not come to fruition in the short term so we shall see where that leads. I need to pray more, and find a community to become part of. That’s really a goal for 2012.

I really want to change my body. I really need to get into new shape because this old shape is wearing on me emotionally. You know you plow someone with radical drugs for more than 17 years and you get what you are stuck with. I’ve kind of settled for this pear shape. Resigned to the fact that I am not ever going to recapture my 26 year old shape any time soon, but a glimpse would be nice.

I want to surpass the 26,000 page views this blog has had in the last calendar year. I want to write more on varying topics of interest. And maybe I will get to answer those burning questions that have been posed by searchers who have come to the blog with very specific search terms.

Wouldn’t you all like to know if Lisa Laflamme is gay or not ??? And does that really matter to you all? But it is the top searched term on my stats board. She is a professional news anchor, and I don’t make it my business to out people. Famous or not. I never have and I never will…

It will be another sober year. Time to redouble my efforts with sponsees. To work with others more, and to give time to my two meetings each week. I make myself pretty available. But very few people take me up on that offer.

A casual observation … If you ask me for my number and I give it to you, you’d better use it. It is fact that if a number is not used within the first 48 hours of getting it, you won’t ever use it. And that is just plain fact and proven. Just saying …

Time is a precious commodity, once wasted it can never be regained

My ninth grade math teacher Ms. Jackson used to say this to the class every day she set a test in front of us. And I’ve carried that thought throughout my whole life.

Do you think that if you lived on Borrowed Time that you would make greater use of your time and life? Or would you be the same person you are today???

Think on it and share …

That is all, time for bed. More to come, stay tuned …


Who are you ???

This post is brought to you by Cee Lo Green and his latest work “Lady Killer.”

This is a really good album. If you haven’t heard of Cee Lo Green, well you must have. I really like the sound. You should check him out. He’s great …

Get down thumpin tunes. Thanks to That M Feeling for the review and video.

I’ve been sitting here thinking about doing some writing and I needed a focus to write on. Needless to say I’ve been sitting here beating myself up over the fact that my best friend pissed away 23 years of sobriety and did not trust me enough to say something when this was all going on.

But the more I think about it, the more I understand that people are going to do what they do, friendship or not, and that my friends may not trust me fully even after years of work and trust.

I am powerless over people, places and things. She did what she did and now she has to start at the beginning again. And I think, will she ever see 23 years of sobriety again? Probably NOT !!!

Which brings me to my next topic Oprah’s Life class, and tonight’s topic of aging gracefully. I am of the mind that if it works for the women, it should translate across to the men just the same.

Let’s face it, we aren’t getting any younger. And we sure as shit aren’t teenagers any more. I have fallen outside the “target” gay demographic, that age group from 18 to 24 age group. All those pups over on Tumblr are so young. All of them fighting for their spot on the map. Worried about finding love and the right man.

I am so glad that I am well past that stage in my life. I may be getting older, things change every year and that has been the case since I hit 40, 4 years ago. I have written about what that meant to me as it happened.

I am not so worried about aging. I think I have accepted gracefully where I am in the grand scheme of things. I think the only vain thing I can be accused of is dying my hair because I am not ready to go grey at this point in my life. Even if my friends are there. Hubby refuses to have grey hair. So we have our Loreal night’s and our beauty parlor days.

Oprah says that we must accept where we are in our lives. That we must own our lives and be honest about who we are, at what ever age we are at. To begin to live authentically. Because you own the space you are in right now. Nobody but you can say that “I am 44 years old.” I lived to see this age.

And every year that we grow we become more and more authentic. I am not 21 anymore, I don’t have the ass of death I had once in  my life. I may not be the prettiest or hottest looking man on the earth, but I have me. And that has to do for me because I only have this one life to live, so I better make the best of it.

This isn’t a dress rehearsal. We have come this far, and there is air in my lungs and I should be grateful for every day that I get. Not that I am sorry or sad or ungrateful. I just wonder what I am supposed to be doing in this life.

I have asked this question of a friend of mine and the more we talk about passions in life, he says that when I talk about this space, my work with others and my online sober presence, my face lights up and there is pep in my step, so to speak.

I talked to  my friend Rhoda tonight and she is a great teacher for me. She is always interested in what I am doing at school and that I am doing well, that I haven’t taken things for granted.

I also talked to my sponsor on the way home about my upcoming anniversary because this one is BIG, double digits. I’ve been concerned as of late with my place in the grand scheme of sobriety. Should I be doing some kind of inventory or should I be doing something different? I asked him if we could get together and talk all these things through because really, we only see each other on Tuesday nights and we really haven’t done a proper review of my sober life in a long time.

But I have kept to the same routine. I build my life around my meetings. I have my home group, my schooling, and my weekly meetings on Friday and Sunday nights. I am a member at two groups now and I do service at both. I am always looking out for the next big thing, and when I joined Friday West End I felt that that was where I should be for the next phase of my sobriety. I think that there is something there for me to experience.

I’ve been studying the old writings. I am eating up stories of Old Timers. I can’t get enough of them, because if I am not diligent and vigilant, I could end up taking a drink, and I don’t want to do that again. I did it once and it did nothing for my life or my sobriety. But I did learn that I should not make big decisions alone, that I should be ok with where I am and always stay connected to my sponsor and my meetings.

The take away from my slip … Sobriety loosing it’s priority …

I thought I was missing something that I wasn’t getting where I was, so why not go look for it elsewhere. Just set me up for the biggest loss in my life. It cost me everything I owned. And almost my life in the end.

I have watched MANY old timers go out and drink after decades of sobriety, double digits worth of sobriety over stupid things. What can you do? But learn from their mistakes. Come hell or high water, I will make my ten years in 52 days.

52 days …

That’s not far off. And I haven’t hit that 30 day out mark yet. One usually hits that pre cake roller coaster at 30 days out. I hope I don’t get all crazy and shit. Always be mindful of my ego. I don’t really have an ego, well I hope not, nobody has said anything about it to me. I try to keep it real and honest.

I don’t know what else to write so I am going to say goodnight for now.

More to come, stay tuned…


Whisper …

 

Courtesy: Milkboy13

The week is progressing as it will. The weather has been great these past couple of days. It’s a little cool out tonight.

I ran all of my errands on the way out today before getting to the church. It took me little time to set up. And I was pleasantly surprised to see people show up early for the meeting. That’s why I get there with plenty of time before the meeting starts, not to mention, it takes 45 minutes for the coffee pot to perk.

I usually make two pots of coffee, one regular in the larger perk pot and a smaller 12 cup coffee maker for decaf. Last week I didn’t make decaf and people complained about it. You can never cut a break. If you make 2 pots of coffee usually one never gets drank. It seems, decaf is on the rebound.

If we don’t put out sweets before the meeting, people get ancy. I only bought one box of cookies today and by the time the meeting started, all the cookies got eaten. Which means I need to buy 2 boxes for next week.

My sponsor got to talking with the folks at the other meeting that opened up down the road from us and told them that we are contesting the naming of their meeting because they are knocking off our group and that is causing confusion in the community as to who is really the “beginners…”

We have a call in to our DCM alternate to bring this issue up to the GSO to get this issue resolved before the end of the month. The conflict is within the 4th tradition… “Each group should be autonomous, except in matter affecting other groups or AA as a whole.” This whole naming of a new group is causing consternation in the community.

Last week we had 20 people for the meeting. Tonight we better’d that number with 30 people. Many of them were newbies, and a good number of them were women. A lot of our visitors tonight were new faces to our meeting. It is really great to see so many women coming to our meeting. For the longest time  we had been lacking in female attendees.

We opened with a reading from the Twelve and Twelve, step one. It was a great evening. Everybody got a chance to share. We even went a little long to make sure we got everyone in.

It was also nice to see some old faces show up. One of my friends, Bob, is an old timer and I’ve seen him on and off for the last ten years that I’ve been in the rooms. People are getting older some have fallen away, and tonight Bob was on point and talked about getting back to meetings because he is not aging very well and needs to reconnect – it was great to see him tonight.

A good night was had by all …

*** *** *** ***

The other night I watched an episode of Oprah’s Master Class on OWN network, and she was talking about finding your joy, finding that energy from within and working towards your ultimate abilities. And she mentioned the universal power we can all tap into. That power that is greater than ourselves. And she spoke about that connection … The closer you get to that universal power the more in tune you are with yourself to move forwards.

This is not coming across like I want it to as I am typing … I have been a bit disconnected from that universal spirit within me. I’ve been trying to reconnect or move closer to that point within me that is divine. I haven’t been listening very well for that little small voice from within.

Doing the same thing day in and day out, week in and week out it is almost becoming mundane. I have stepped up my game in the areas of prayer and meditation. Getting to meetings on days off from class. And this new format on Tuesday has us looking at things most of us with time, take for granted, because there is distance for us from our last drink to today …

If you forget, there is a good chance that you could go back there …

I’ve been spending time trying to find myself once again. What is it that I am supposed to be doing now? Where is the next puzzle piece for me to find in my journey here? I am trying to find that inspiration that used to fuel my life.

"Life is about growth and change. When you are no longer doing that—that is your whisper; that is your whisper that you are supposed to do something else."

 

"You are not your past. You are not all the things that have happened to you. You are the possibility of what can be."

*** *** *** ***

As I grow up and move on in my life, I wonder at times, what the hell am I doing? and Why am I still doing the same thing … I remarked when I took my 9 year chip that I had hoped that something exciting would happen during this tenth year of working on myself and learning more about sobriety at this stage of the game… Maybe I am missing the ball or maybe I am not paying close enough attention to my guide within.

Maybe I am scared of stepping out of my comfort zone to even attempt something grand. There is a Canada commercial that runs on tv here that is very beautiful and it talks about “During your life, make sure that there is at least one chapter that is extraordinary.”

I’ve yet to write that chapter of my life. There are things that I want to do in this life, with the time I have left. There are things I want to see, places I want to go, yet I don’t know what intention to put out there to make these things manifest in my life. I think that if I could find that point of passion within me and pay closer attention to my spirit, that the world would open itself up and all those things I want to do will manifest.

That’s the whole journey of life, to become who we were meant to be, to find our passion and make it work…

"I say the universe speaks to us, always, first in whispers."

*** *** *** ***

I am not listening for the whisper. I have fallen into a quiet place where that voice isn’t making sense. The universe speaks in whispers, if we don’t pay attention to the whisper, the we get thumped on the side of our heads, and if we still don’t pay attention, we get a brick upside of the head, and finally, the brick wall falls upon us …

I have forgotten what that whisper sounds like. And I want to find it again. I need a change. I need for something exciting to drop into my life and really get me going. At times I think that I am just wasting time doing what I am doing, still in school, destined to be a student until the money runs out and I have to get out there and do something with my education.

That’s the one thing that did not happen when I graduated university, nothing happened. Were those six years wasted time and money? Two degrees in religion and pastoral ministry have not served me at all. I have been writing for years here for a few people who come and read, but more for myself.

I am up for a change … How do we get the universe to give up its secrets? Am I missing something? Am I not aligned in the proper way? Do I need to find that point of connection?

Maybe I’ve become a little complacent. Who knew I’d live this long and what really do I have to look forwards to in this life? I think that people who live with life illness get caught in this frame of mind that limits the ability to dream big and expect great things to happen. We step back from the universe stuck in this position of never getting forwards, always settling for right now.

I need to get out of that stupor. I need a life. I need something exciting to happen, or sobriety is a waste of time and effort … I have skills and experience and a university education and years of life experience to put on the line.

I need to find that whisper …