Wednesday, March 22, 2006

The difference between an addictive mind and a normal one.

Perception I think. I'm sure that's the main difference, we (Addicts) percieve the world in a warped manner.

The Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous says "We are driven by a hundred forms of self delusion".

I believe this and have seen it time and again in my own life as well as others. I have my own insights that go a little deeper though.

For example, I think people with a predisposition to addiction are a lot more sensitive than the average person, their skin is a lot thinner for some reason, in most cases anyway.

I think that because of this fact they pick up a lot more vibes from people around them, they "instinctively" know when they are not liked or when people are talking about them.

This may sound a little looney I know, but I believe it's true.

What I'm trying to say is that they, "Addictive minded people", are more aware of the external world than the average person.

Here's an extreme analogy....Imagine if you could read everyones mind, you would go nuts, hearing all those thoughts, what people really thought of you....this is what it's like for addicts.....only to a milder degree I think.

I've been clean and sober almost ten years, but I am still hyper sensitive, I have learned to make it work to my advantage though, for me rather than against me.

I don't let things get to me like I used to.

On the downside though.

Because we are hyper sensitive, we have the ability to become master manipulators, often times we can predict (with great accuracy) what people want, and we can take advantage of the situation and get what we want, which usually isn't good.

Anyway, these are just my opinions.

Monday, March 13, 2006

Early Recovery

Early recovery is about staying clean and sober only, doing whatever it takes, keeping my eyes on the road.

I see so many people in early recovery trying to deal with their emotional,psycho/social issues,because they have been told this is what they should be doing. This is a mistake.

Staying clean and sober is enough for the first two years. Dealing with "issues" to soon will just overload the already fragile mindset and the addict/alcoholic will return to familiar patterns.

This is one of the main reasons you don't see a lot of two year clean/sober time anniversaries, I see a lot of one years, but most never make it to two years or beyond.

My advice to newcomers is, "Your issues will always be there, there is no hurry".

A person needs to build a solid foundation in sobriety before they takle deep seated issues.

Unfortunately a lot of people end up in Rehabs that teach them that the reason they use is because of their "issues".

This is baloney. My desease is physical first. Once I get a handle on abstinance I can then tackle what issues need to be dealt with.

Dealing with issues first is just doing things backwards,it rarely works.

My advice? Just worry about staying clean and sober the first two years, learn to smell the flowers again, learn to laugh again, learn to live.

Take a load off, your issues will still be there when it's time.

Saturday, March 11, 2006

My Friend Clint

I was thinking about him tonight.He died May the 10th 1998.Clint was my roomate off and on for a number of years, and he was gay. There was a 30 year difference in our ages and I was/am heterosexual but we were still the best of friends.

I think in some ways I was the closest he would ever come to having his own son. He bitched at me sometimes and made a fuss over the dumbest things, and I of course was a royal pain in the ass to him on a number of occasions.

He bailed me out of trouble a few times over the years, a number of times actually. I was always there for him too.

We'd get drinking and start yelling at each other, him telling me what a drugged out screw up I was and me telling him he was a f$#@kin drunk.Blossum, his dog would be between us barking. I can't count the times my problems landed on his doorstep, too many to count. I miss him.

Clint did drink too much at times, but he always took care of his responsibilities. I drank a lot too at one time, but I was always irresponsible.

The difference in our drinking was that Clint was a hard drinker, I was an alcoholic and a dopehead and shirked my responsibilities.

Clint had a lot more reasons to drink than I ever did. He suffered horrible guilt over being gay, he was sexually and physically and emotionally abused, yet he still always lived up to his responsibilities. I never did.

I will always think about him. I especially think about him during the spring time, that was the last time I saw him alive.

It was near the tenth of May in 1998 and I had worked outside all day and was tired but had the feeling I should go see him, he was in the hospital at the time. I took the bus and visited with him for awhile, it was the last visit we would ever have.

His brother called me the next evening and told me he had passed away. It was the end of an era for me, and him. I miss him as I write this.

I was two years sober and clean at the time and he was very proud, I knew he was holding his breath at times, waiting for me to fall off the wagon. I still haven't and it will be ten years soon, in May.

I am happy that I was cleaned up the last time I saw him alive, and he was too.

My Site

Check my site out here.

Tuesday, March 07, 2006

I'll Tell The Truth

Reading what I just wrote made me think,it's true to a point,what I said earlier.

The reason I have no wife or kids I think is because I am emotionally fragile,it's the reason I am so disconnected from people and the world around me.What if something happened to them,it would kill me.

Women in previous relationships always told me I was cold and distant,that I didn't love them,I did in some cases,I just couldn't be connected to them.

So,though people percieve me as cold,hard,distant,I am really just weak,fragile,they don't see this though,and never will.

Death

Thank you for your comment on the "My Aunt" post mystery lady.I enjoyed reading about your Aunt,you weren't rambling.

I've had two people die recently that I knew,Billy Cowsill and my Aunt Evelyn.I called a friend of mine last night because he has been sick.His cancer has spread to his lung and lympth nodes,he doesn't have long.

He is only 35 and has a wife and three little girls,it breaks my heart.He has always been fairly active,worked hard,and never smoked.

Then there's me,smoke like a chimny,abusing my body with every known substance for years,and I get to live.....knock on wood,who knows.

I think my depression lately has been because of these recent deaths.It's made me look at how short life really is,it's cracked my bubble,we are so sheltered from death in our society.

It's made me revaluate my life,and I've come up sorely lacking I'm afraid.Most of my forty years have been trite and meaningless I feel.

I have no wife (Couldn't keep one anyway) no kids,no career,a few possesions,my guitars and leather jackets are my dearest I suppose.

I've always wandered and been a transient,never seeing the point to life,and I probably never will if I haven't by forty.

Things society values I've never really cared that much about,monetary success mostly.Immortality through children,people wanting to leave their mark,why?

Most people live like they will be on earth forever,building monuments to themselves,hoping to be remembered.

I have always lived like it will all end,never seeing the point to it,I still think I'm right.

I don't care if people remember me,it won't matter when I'm gone anyway.

My tombstone will read...."Here lies.....uh....don't remember his name.....may he rest in peace".

Monday, March 06, 2006

My Site

Don't forget to check out my site here

My Aunt

My Aunt Evelyn passed away recently.We went to visit her in the hospital a short time before.

About a week later I was falling asleep and felt a faint breeze on my face,I thought to myself that maybe it was Aunt Evelyn stopping in to say bye,then I put it out of my mind thinking that was sillyness.

My father phoned later that day to tell me Aunt Evelyn had passed on,you guessed it,it was at the exact time that I felt the breeze and thought of her.

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Here's to You Billy

Billy Cowsill died on Friday February 17th at his home in Calgary AB,Canada at the age of 58.

I knew Billy, and I liked him, he was not only a fellow addict he was a fellow musician.

I took some lessons from him back in the late 90's, we jammed about 3 times.

The fondest memory I have of Billy is him sitting in my living room, one afternoon, playing song after song for me on his big bodied Larrivae guitar.

Some of the songs were standards and some were his own, some not even published or recorded.

He taught me not to step on the vocalist in a song, which I did while we were playing a tune together and I was playing slide. I never forgot that lesson and my playing got better as a result, now I am more into the song than the lead, which is the way it should be.

Billy was about the song, he was a master of rhythm, he knew more about music than anyone I ever met.

He is a loss to the music world as well as his friends and family, who recently lost their other brother Barry Cowsill.

I kind of lost touch with Billy over the last few years but would run into him on the street in Calgary from time to time, we'd catch up a bit and then be on our separate ways.

Billy was a private person, kind of a loner in a way, but not lonely, he valued his solitude and I respected him for it.

If there is a heaven, he is surely jamming with Barry and the rest of the musicians that have made their way there.

So here's to you Billy, we'll miss you.

Sunday, February 19, 2006

James Frey, Gone to a (Million Little Pieces)

There never was any doubt in my mind that James Frey was a fraud. I'm not just talking about his book, a supposed memior called "A Million Little Pieces". I'm talking about his image as an addict/alcoholic bad boy.

I can't say if he really is an addict/alcoholic, that's not my place. I do know however that he embellishes a lot. Even if he is an addict/alcoholic he isn't to the degree that he portrays in real life or in his book, and he sure as hell isn't a bad boy.

What bothers me about the whole thing is the fact that he has lost credibility with so many people trying to recover, who maybe are new and grabbed onto his book and story and looked up to him and saw there was hope for them too.

Now that he is exposed as a fraud, a lot of those people will be disenchanted so to speak, with the whole recovery process.

All the talk in the media is about how he conned Oprah and his publisher Nan A. Talese, what about all the new people in recovery? Nobody has said a word about them.

He didn't fool any of us old dogs who have real addiction stories and real scars, but he sure fooled the publishing industry and Oprah and the whole Pop Psycology movement.

They don't want the truth though, they want shlock, they always do, so I don't know why they're whining. They want stuff that sounds good, that sounds bad boyish. The truth isn't like that, it's boring for the most part, and rarely sells books.

The truth to the James Frey story would never have made a book, it would probably be a boring 15 minute story at best.

The truth is that the whole thing should have been covered up, Oprah could still be smiling and singing the praises of James Frey, the publishers would be making their money, James Frey would have his bad boy image he so desparately needs and wants, and the addicts would have their hope.

His isn't the first all crap story I've heard.

I could go on and on, but it's what the people want, they don't want to hear from those of us that have really been there.

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

On finding that special "someone"

The "love" relationship is perhaps the most selfish relationship we will ever enter into in our lives, let me explain.

Even though we are involved with another person, the whole relationship is really all about us. How they make us feel, how we feel being around the other person, what they do for us, is the sex good for us, and on and on it go's.

Two people may be together but they still exist in their own seperate worlds to a certain extent.

In the old days things were different, you married for different reasons, mainly necessity. It was a lot easier to survive as a family unit rather than on ones own. People married to have children, lot's and lot's if the womans body could stand it.

A lot of people nowadays tend to marry out of loneliness it seems, for selfish reasons. We live in a very narcisistic society....a me myself and I world.

I watched an interesting program one day, it was about a man and a woman who were trying to save their marriage. The way they did it made perfect sense.

One of them, I can't remember which one, began putting the other first in their order of priorities, lo and behold if the other person didn't fall into line and start doing the same thing a few weeks later.

Their marriage was saved in the long run, and the lesson here is that you gotta give in order to get.....period.

Sunday, February 12, 2006

Valentines Day is Coming

Having someone to celebrate Valentines day is a nice thing. I find myself without again this year.

I hear some people whining about it but it doesn't really bother me in the least. I'm comfortable by myself, always have been for the most part.

I never needed a woman to make me feel whole so that makes me rare in a way.

I've never had any trouble getting a girlfriend, and I could be married if I wanted to be and was like the majority of people, getting married and having kids because they think it's the right thing and normal thing to do.

I don't and never have felt that way about it though.

I believe in love, real love, having the kind of person you can't and don't want to live without.

So many people are with people by default.

Not me, I have the odd fling here and there but I remain single for the most part for "her", I know she's out there, somewhere.

I won't settle for less than what I really want.

She doesn't have to be a bombshell, it's chemistry and a connection of the spirit I think.

I don't mind going to my grave single if that's what I have to do.

I won't get into a long term relationship with any less than what I really want, if I do then she might pass me by because I'm with someone, and I wouldn't want that happening now would I?

Saturday, February 11, 2006

Depression

I get letters from people who are depressed sometimes. at my site www.dearjames.net I get all manner of letters, but the ones from depressed people are the hardest to answer at times.

I've suffered from depression myself for most of my life. There are resources and medication available nowadays to help people but it takes awhile for the Dr to find what's right for each person, if they even really need it.

I don't take medication myself and never have, I just work my way through it. I ride it out as best I can, it's difficult at times but there is no other way for me at this point.

I'm careful with my advice on most subjects but especially with this one. Some people have to be on medication but most just need to learn to deal with life it seems.

Life is difficult and a lot of people can't seem to accept that fact, they go from Dr to Dr trying different medications, looking for an easier softer way to deal with life. Life is difficult at times and no medication is going to change that fact, none.

There is no way to think my way out of a depression, I can however "do" my way out of a depression and have on a number of occasions.

What I mean is I can take some sort of "action" that helps to pull me out of the rut of depression. Helping others is a great way because it takes my focus off of me for awhile which can be pretty healthy.

The biggest cause of depression I know of is too much "thinking with no action", and when we stop having a dream to work towards, no "inspiration".

So get out there and start dreaming and doing something.

My Advice Column,Website.

I decided to add this blog as an addition to my advice column, website at www.dearjames.net

I also write for a couple other sites but Dear james is mine.

A lot of the letters I get are from teenagers and a few are even younger than that. It’s easy as adults to make light of some of the problems kid’s go through but they are big issues to them and I always read carefully and respond as best I can.

A majority of the letters I get are relationship stuff. It seems to be the main topic in a lot of peoples lives. It’s interesting to note that most bad relationships, started out bad to begin with. If it start’s out bad it won’t ever be good, period. So many people keep beating a dead horse when it comes to their relationship.

What I mean is that a lot of people seem to be with someone simply to be with someone, they can’t be alone. Or they leave one relationship and jump right into another one.

I’m not advocating being alone for the rest of ones life if a relationship doesn’t work, just take the time to find the right person, kind of person.

A lot of people are lonely though and will take what they can get, even if they don’t admit it to themselves.

There is no easy answer, quality over qauntity. Take your time, date, be wary of warning signs, red flags, if you ignore them, you will find yourself in a bad relationship later on.

I’ve been with a couple people myself, and what I’ve learned is that their problems don’t go away because their with me, their problems become mine whether I like it or am ready for it or not.

I also get letters from people with drug or alcohol problems. Some are young some are older but all are in the same screwed up place.

Lonely, hurting, not knowing the way out.

I can relate, I was there for a long time and went right to deaths door. I know what it’s like for every day to be dark and screwed up.

To have nothing left.

I tell them all the same thing, there’s only one way, and that is to give up your life for one whole year, put everything on hold……everything.

Get into detox and go from there to treatment and from there straight into AA or NA meetings…..depending on your drug of choice.

If you aren’t ready to do ANYTHING to quit, you can’t quit….period.

I recieve letters from young women who are pregnant too. Once again alone, scared, not really knowing what options are available to them.

I always refer them to an agency that can help them and the hope they go.

I get all kinds of letters and will try and post my thoughts on some of them here.

I was going to post some of them on my site and I will in the future.

In the meantime I’ll just keep answering letters and caring as best I can.

James

Saturday, January 28, 2006

I'm Back.

I was back the 22nd of Sept but have been busy doing other things and had nothing to say really anyway.

Now I'm back and writing for my own amusement again.

I saw a funny site dedicated to the shittiest blogs on the web, it's pretty funny and made me think of my blog. It wouldn't surprise me to see mine on there some day being ripped apart

I'm in a rather dark depression this week and nothing has any color and I feel like shit, inside and out, such is life at times.

I am clean and sober though, some days that's all you have.

Here's a link to my website http://www.dearjames.net

It's my self help/advice column.

Wednesday, May 11, 2005

Stephanie

Stephanie was the love of my life. It took me many years to admit this because I hated her for so long after we parted. She is the only woman I ever lived with, I've never been that close to any woman before or since her. She finally left me in the fall of 1992, at a detox.

That was almost 13 years ago now. I've been with a number of women since then, but I've never come close to moving in with any uf them, the relationship ends before we ever get to that level.

Stephanie and I went through the pregnancy thing the winter of 91/92. It was a nightmare in so many ways, I don't even like to think about it a lot, it was horrible.

She was screwed up herself and had her own issues but my being a practicing addict certainly didn't help things I can tell you. I'm not saying things would have worked out between us anyway, had I not been an addict.

She miscarried in January of 1992 and whatever was left of the bond we did have was gone.

I wouldn't call what we had true love simply because I was the one in love, she never loved me the way I loved her. Maybe in the beginning she did, I don't know, but in the end all she wanted was to get away from me.

I failed her miserably and maybe that's what I've always feared since....with other women. I can't help but keep them at a distance, even if I really do care about them, I had problems with that before her though but it's been worse since.

I loved everything about her, even her flaws....everything. I can't describe the pain and obsession I went through with her in our last months together. No woman has ever had the power over me she had, I don't know if it was just because I was so emotionally weakened by my addiction or what it was really, I just remember.

I don't know where she is now, except to say that four years after we parted we met again and talked one afternoon and my hate for her melted, the black clouded that enveloped her memory evaporated.

We met a few times for coffee after that and talked on the phone a few times and then I lost track of her. I did see her once at the Calgary Stampede after our last phone conversation....she was looking beautiful as usual and with a handsome guy and looked happy, she didn't see me though......and so..... I finally let her go.

Friday, May 06, 2005

My Nine Year Aniversary

Though the 5th of May is technically my nine year aniversary it still is the 5th to me because I got up late and am still up so technically it's still "today" for me even though it's already technically the 6th of May.

I left the Detox 9 years ago today on May the 5th of 1996 and have never looked back, and not even really looked forward all that far either....just to today.

I'm not going to say that it's been a journey, simply because it still is a journey and I'm still on it and God willing I will be for the rest of my life, however long that may be.

I won't lie and tell you how rosy my life and sobriety are because that would be a lie. It hasn't been hard for me to stay sober but life has been difficult at times along the way. I've just kind of plugged along and done what I've had to do and never lost my memory of how bad it was and kept praying and here I am still clean and sober.

I've made some friends along the way and lost some, made some new enemies and made friends out of former ones....life has moved along and I'm still here.

God spoke to me once just over nine years ago, not in words but in feelings, "he" or "it" or "her" or "whatever" it was came to me that night and told me something I've never forgotten.

"You have free will, if you pick up again (A drug or a drink) I will not be able to help you, not because I don't want to or do not have the power, but because you will not want it, you will not have another chance because you will never give yourself another chance."

Whatever it was that came into my room that night I weakly called for help, I call God, and through emotions that is what God said to me.

God has been silent since. There were many nights in early sobriety when I would dread going back to my dingy two room apartment after an A.A. meeting. I had no power and no money and no food, I would sit in the dark with just one little lamp powered by an extension cord going into my friend Clints apartment. I would sit on my bed talking to God and waiting for sleep to come and he would comfort me, his spirit was just there, not saying anything but it was there....and finally I would find sleep.

That's where I started.

Wednesday, April 27, 2005

Step Three

(Made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to God as we understood him)

This in my opinion and experience is the simplest of steps and yet people struggle with it and complicate it to no end. This step takes the least amount of effort, out of all the steps it takes the least amount of work.

I can only give my opinion and experience with this step and share what has been revealed to me. All I have to do is want to believe in God, he will do the rest, he will bridge the gap. I am a human being and imperfect and therefore I cannot bridge the gap, only he can.

God does not expect me to be a saint, I expect me to be a saint because I think that's what is required for God to pay attention to me, it seems to be a part of the human condition.

So in the grand human tradition I throw stumbling blocks in front of myself and cut myself off from God, God does not cut me off from him. Step three gets me, I don't have to get it, all I have to do is do the reading in the big book and ask God to take care of me and show me his will and then let him....it's that simple....let him.

People stumble over the question "what is Gods will for me"? Of course in my own self centred mind I'm thinking it must be something complicated and grand. I keep it simple though, that's what I was taught to do and it works. If I had a child what would my will be for him or her? Simple...try to be a good person, don't drink and use drugs, don't hurt people, don't lie cheat and steal. If my child were to stumble and commit any one of these sins would I hate them and cut them off from me? Of course not. God is the same way I've learned, he is my parent....my heavenly parent and loves me, my job is just to want him to be in my life, he will do the rest.

Not all in my time of course, but in his own time.

Tuesday, April 26, 2005

Step Two

(Came to believe that a power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity)

"Came to believe" is the key phrase here, it takes time. There is no time frame for the steps, some people take longer to work through them and that is fine. I think I always believed in a power greater than myself, I was just pissed at it.

A lot of my thinking and behaviour was insane and I realized that right off before I ever got step one. Doing the same things over and over and hoping that this time it would be different. That is insane, as well as a lot of other behaviours and thinking, hating and resenting people hoping it would hurt them, meanwhile it was like drinking poisen and hoping they would die, that's insane.

Ending up in treatment centre after treatment centre and then convincing myself that it was ok to go back out and use drugs/alcohol again....downright nutty....but it seemed perfectly logical at the time of course.

It took me time to believe that a power greater than myself (God to me) would help me to start thinking rationally. There's no rush, this step takes time like all the others, (it doesn't work if you don't get step one though,no exceptions).

Step One

(We admitted we were powerless over alcohol/addiction-that our lives had become unmanageable.)

My understanding of this step as well as the others is pretty simple,"stay away from the first drink/drug". I can accomplish nothing if I don't stay away from the first one, I can never safely drink or use drugs...period. That's what all those years of hell taught me, I give up, I will not test to see if I can have a drink....I can't.

Total abstinance is what this step means, no games, no playing around with any kind of mind altering substance. As I said in an earlier post, I always tried to stay away from the 3rd or 4rth or 20th drink or drug. The reality is that as soon as I take the first one I am done, I can't stop and to truly have step one down I had to come to this realization....that's step one in a nutshell for me.

Very few new people in the program get this at first, it's a simple step but difficult, everyone thinks they're the exception and tries again and falls on their face again, there's no way past this step but I see people try to get by it over and over again.

If you don't get this one down cold, nothing else will work.

The Difference Between Addicts And Alcoholics

Not much really, at the core level I mean. I have never known an alcoholic that could use drugs safely and I have never known an addict that could drink safely. Bill Wilson said in another grapevine article I read years ago, "Addicts and Alcoholics are cousins" One must remember that Bill's experience with drugs was limited to seditives prescribed by a doctor.

He also grew up in another era where drugs were really an evil and underground thing. Alcohol was the drug of choice in his day and socially acceptable, whereas drugs are also socially acceptable today in addition to alcohol.

The only difference between addicts and alcoholics I've seen is lifestyle. N.A. and A.A. have been at odds for years, A.A. old timers hated when people talked about drugs at A.A. meetings and basically chased the drug people out so they just started their own program called N.A. based on the same principles and 12 steps as A.A.

An addiction is an addiction, whether your choice of drug is alcohol or coke or pills, doesn't matter, we all go to the same place in the end, jails, institutions, death.

In the future, my lifetime maybe, the two programs will merge, addicts and alcoholics will finally realize they are one and the same.

Depression In Recovery

I've suffered from depression for years in and out of recovery, I didn't know what it was though. I just thought I was some kind of loser who would never get things right, I didn't know I was a human being and would never get everything right.

I read an article in an A.A. grapevine once where Bill Wilson said he was in a depression for 15 years, I think it was the first 15 years of his sobriety, I can't remember but I'm sure that's what it was.

Depression is a fact of life for a lot of us addicts/alcoholics, mine comes and goes, this time I've been in one for a couple years. I've learned to live with it though and I trudge on in life almost never satisfied with where I'm at but getting better none the less.

I've thought about going on medication for it and I might eventually go that route, I don't know at this point. I see some people in early recovery go that route and I think it's a huge mistake, I mean their brain chemistry is already screwed up and then they go on medication and they just get worse and wonder why.

I'm kind of scared to go that route just because I'm afraid of the effect medication will have on me....me being such a control freak as it is. Anyway, I don't know, that's just where I'm at right now.

The mystery that is God

God is a complete mystery to me and I personally think that's just the way it's supposed to be. Anybody purporting to "know" what God is and understand God is a little wacko in my opinion. I have never met anyone with a direct pipeline to God, though I have met a few that claimed a direct pipeline to God.

I watch some religious programs and like some of them and blow others off as nonsense. God as I understand "him" or "her" or "it" is free and open to anyone and everyone that seeks God. I personally believe God is a "him" and that's just my belief, I don't care or worry what others believe, it's personal and everyone can believe what they want.

One thing I have learned about God is that I don't actually have to "believe", I just have to want to "believe"and he will do the rest. Weird but it works.

God is not about rules, mankind is about rules. Mankind has made lot's of rules for everyone to follow. Isn't it funny though how those that make the rules in most cases don't follow the rules, rules are always for others and not for those that make them.

Rules are meant to be broken, perfection is only an ideal I can strive for but never attain, by the same token I must forgive others for falling short, I do it all the time.

I can be a very unforgiving person and hold a grudge for a long time but at the same time be totally bewildered when someone does the same to me....such is the human condition....locked in my own little world where I am the centre and the king....it's lonely at the top.

I am getting better now though, I'll always fall short and I know that, but I don't hate like I used to or stay angry as long....progress rather than perfection.

I just try to forgive, my God forgives me and it's something I will work on the rest of my life.

Monday, April 25, 2005

Recovery From Addiction

I struggled for so many years, falling on my face again and again. I could just never stay straight and sober. And of course I blamed everyone and everything else for it. Finally in the end, and I do mean the end because I was so sick physically and yellow "from my liver almost blowing up" I finally listened to those that knew what they were doing.....the people who had successfully sobered up.

I was 30 years old at the time and took my sobriety serious this time, I did what they told me and I prayed like I'd never prayed before.

Here I am almost nine years later and still clean and sober. My nine years is on may the 5th and I can hardly believe how the time has passed by so quickly....but it has.

My program is simple, just like I was taught. I stay away from the first drug or drink, not the second or third one because I've come to realize that as an addictive person it is imposssible for me to stay away once I've taken the first one. This so simple that you almost have to be a child to get it.

I never entertain the thought of using a drug or a drink. When I was younger I always thought I had more time, "I'll straighten out next week or next year" was my motto untill the day came when I couldn't, even though I really wanted too.

This is the game I see so many people play, everyone thinks their the exception, it will be different for them....good luck....I know people who have died thinking like that and I was almost one of them....no thanks.

Everyone I sobered up around, the new ones like me......are all back out there and a couple are in jail and a couple are dead with the exception of myself and two other people.

God gave me a gift, he gave me my choice back, I choose not to pick up the first one and I've been sober ever since.

I see a lot of new people in the program of A.A. and N.A. get too much into their deep seated emotional issues in early recovery.....this in my opinion is a grave error and I discourage people from doing that.

Let me explain. Early recovery is about staying sober, that's it, simple, those issues will continue to be there down the road I assure you, you don't need to fill your plate to overflowing in the beginning....even the first two years.

Being overwhelmed by these issues sends most people right back out.....and for what.....now they may die and never deal with them. A lot of pop psychology has seeped into the program over the years and it has no place there....none. I've even heard Dr Phil quoted at a meeting.

Sure professionals have a place in our society, but they do not have a place in A.A. or N.A. That place is for addicts and alcoholics to help each other, Dr's have never been able to sober us up.....only our own kind has been able to help us.

Save the pop psychology stuff for outside the meeting. Being raised in a bad home is not what made me drink or do drugs, neither did sexual abuse or abuse in general.....I have a desease....I believe in the desease concept because I have seen the proof of it in my own life. There is something physiologically different about me then the average Joe that can drink normally.

My issue is addiction and alcoholism....not my abuse.

Saturday, November 06, 2004

First Entry

Well...this is my first entry....hmmm....what should I say?Stuff to do.....I'll post again later.