Category Archives: Recovery
Often times helping others can be an exciting new adventure for all involved. I read yesterday about an organization that helps the homeless by having them run. It is called “Back on My Feet.” By helping the homeless become runners, the group is giving each person the chance to feel better mentally and physically. It has chapters all over the Us and has many jobs available. From the website, I learned that it was founded in 2007 and has 75% of members maintaining 90% attendance at morning runs.
I learned about this group while reading another amazing site: One Day One Job. You can get jobs by email from this site with a new employer featured each day and jobs available from this employer. The site has 1665 entry level employers. I believe the site is most valuable because it introduces readers to all types of job opportunities they may not have known about before the email.
1. From Jess (Journey in the Spirit of hope): “Fitting In”:
I read Delivering Happiness a few weeks ago. It is the manifesto of Tony Hseih, the man who along with a few close business partners, founded a community, just as many successful communities are founded. He became quite successful working hard, but found in the end that hard work and trying are…less than satisfactory. He found that the real key was in the mission, the dedication to self-less service. He learned from past mistakes and grew from them. The team was built as a culture, a service culture. Not just picking individuals for their skills, but in his realization that the culture that you are creating in building that team is much more important than any individuals skills, that the inspiration to greatness comes from a certain attitude, and with that attitude you cannot fail.
Living for a common goal of helping and serving in a common bond with others is key to success.
So today, lets not ask “what would bill or bob do?”
Today lets ask God what he would have us be, and really really sit with that
2. From Hummingbird (al-anon journal): “Laundry”:
I recently started a writing class that takes me a full hour to get to each week. I know that if I leave an hour and fifteen minutes before class, I can walk in calmly, present in the moment, and enjoy taking time to do something I’ve always wanted to do. Two weeks ago, I was behind in my work and felt guilty about going to class. I got caught up in the work and pushed my time window way too close, leaving only 55 minutes before class. I raced all the way there, stressing, and talking on my cellphoneto clients from my car. Like the writer of today’s passage said, I was trying “to rush to an encounter with serenity”. As I pulled up to the parking structure, I narrowly missed an elderly pedestrian in the crosswalk and had a brisk awakening. The man was justifiably surprised and angry, and I had to stop and do a Tenth Step, right there in the driveway.
As I mouthed an apology to the man I nearly killed, Al-Anon slogans ran through my head like a ticker tape. “Easy Does It.” “First Things First.” “Keep it Simple.” Words that I used to think were trite, bubbling to the surface of my crazy day. I had to acknowledge the irony. It’s no mistake that the slogans are simple because, when we need to hear them most, we are so caught up in our own heads that they haveto be simple in order to get through.
I know that recovery is not to be found on a racetrack. I cannot multitask my way into serenity any more than Kelly Ripa can purchase an appliance to deliver it. The only way I’m going to find serenity is if I practice the principles of Al-Anon in allmy affairs. Old habits die hard with me and I have a stubborn resistance to change. I know I’m getting closer, though, because at least I’m starting to notice when the laundry basket is on my head.
3. From no author listed (Spiritual River to Recovery): “Discovering Exercise and Fitness as a Way to Overcome Alcoholism and Drug Addiction”:
For one thing, I found that a lot of people who I looked up to in recovery (those who seemed to be really successful in their program that I saw at 12 stepmeetings and such) were typically into some form of exercise. They were active people. They did not just sit around and allow their bodies to atrophy.
Second of all, I found some organizations such as “Racing for Recovery” that were based entirely on the idea that exercise could overcome drug or alcohol addiction. Here was a group of people who used the trainingfor marathons and triathlons as their primary means of staying clean and sober. How were they doing this? So I did some reading about them and found out that many people did in fact work this sort of recovery program.
They relied entirely on exercise as their means of staying clean and sober. Work out, feel good. Train for big races, achieve goals, feel good about yourself. This was their entire model for success in overcoming addiction. And while I am sure that it does not work for everyone, here was an entire organization with a real following and so it was plain to see that it was at least working for some people. Thus there had to be something to it. Exercise was important.
“When two codependents enter a relationship, they often overtly or covertly try to manipulate the partner to provide the love and approval needed to fill what John Bradshaw calls the “hole in the soul”. Both partners attach themselves to the other for a sense of completeness, a strategy that stunts personal growth and development. By surrendering responsibilty for our happiness to other people, we create power struggles, arguments, and ultimately broken promises, expectations, and hearts. We can break out of the codependent trap….by working through the pain of our unmet childhood needs and by cultivating an inner life.” Ronald S. Miller
1. A Room of Mama’s Own; Why I Stay
“When my son was a baby, he used to cry all the time and his only comfort seemed to be breastfeeding. I’d be up every hour all night breastfeeding him, and before long, I was beyond exhausted. One night, Mark got up with me. “Go back to bed,” I said, “You have to work in the morning.” “So do you,” he replied, “and your job is taking care of our son, which is much more important than mine. Let me help, even if I just sit with you.” And I… Well, I did what any exhausted, frazzled, breastfeeding, new mother would do: I burst into tears. He got up with me every night after that: to change diapers or get me water or just doze next to me.”
“A few years later, when I found out about his sex addiction, I couldn’t believe how much he had lied and cheated through all of our years together. He seemed more like a monster than the good man I thought I knew. But when I stopped and held all the lies in a balance with his one simple act of love and tenderness for me, and for our son, I was able to look into the face of the abyss, and say, “This is a good man. It doesn’t matter what wrong he has done; it can’t hold up in the face of that proof of goodness and great love.”
“I know that Mark stood in the hospital room holding our son on the day of his birth and made him a great promise. He renewed the promise he made but couldn’t keep when we started dating, when we got engaged, when we got married. As he looked down at that fragile baby in his arms, he silently swore to himself and his son that things would really be different this time: he would change, he would never do those horrible things again, he would never bring hurt or pain into our family, he would protect us from himself. He couldn’t keep that promise: not a year, not a month, not a day. He is a good man and a strong man, and he meant well; he wanted passionately to keep that promise, but he didn’t know how.”
2. Ettuhusband: “Glimpses of Me”(no longer online):
“I talked to a dear friend today who is going through a horrible time. She is understandably devastated, sad and scared and thinks she will probably be getting a divorce.”
“I wish I had the right thing to say to help her cope with her grief.”
“But I’m telling you: this girl is amazing. Just amazing. Smart, beautiful, accomplished in every way. (seriously, what is it about sex addicts that make them pick the most amazing women?!)”
“I think our talk was good for both of us, since by talking to her, I saw glimpses of old me by hearing her out. It was so strange to feel like I could understand what talking to me in the old days must have been like.”
“I remembered saying such similar (and valid) things: that I felt tainted, that I felt used. That I felt sexually abused and that no one would ever want me. As I heard her ask who would want her (poor baby), I also thought– my God, anyone. Anyone would. She’s really a total catch. And for the first time, I understood why people always leapt to assure me that I would find someone amazing. It always bothered me that people said that– like what– I’m not valuable enough on my own?”
“Why does everyone think a women is less full of inherent worth if she’s single?! (and this still bothers me, to a point.) However, I think I also get that unasked-for commentary on my marital status, too. Because, wow, here’s this incredible woman asking how anyone would ever want her, when the truth is, the only person in that relationship who shouldn’t be wanted by anyone again is the sex addict. He’s tainted– she’s not.”
3. Discoveringrecovering: “Pound Puppy”
“So, my partner is now on involuntary psychiatric hospitalization number 2, along with 2 partial hospitalizations- 1 “successfully” completed and one not, all since mid November. When I can separate myself and my feelings from all this, it’s interesting to see her fight with herself. She wants help and she doesn’t. She wants somebody to take care of her and she resents being controlled. She wants someone to keep her safe, and she wants to push limits of the people whom she’s asked to do so.”
“When I can look at the behavior from a place of healthy detachment, some of her behavior is really funny. She actually told the nurse last night not to put a needle in her hand because that would hurt and not to put a bandage on her arm after they took blood there because it would leave a bruise. That might make sense if it weren’t for the fact that she was there because she couldn’t contract to keep herself safe from significantly more pain and resulting in significantly more physical evidence.”
“That’s what’s going on with her.”
“As for me, I’m pretty pleased with my commitment to myself to maintain my balance. I left her at the emergency room and went to my naranon meeting. Before I went back to the ER, I treated myself to a nice dinner and coffee. I’m enjoying having space. I’m doing my work without too many intrusive thoughts.”