Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Dog Beer Hits The Market

I saw this product advertised recently and was shocked. I took my concerns to our veterinarian and he confirmed my suspicions. It seems that an alarming number of dogs have been enjoying this Doggie Beer and have developed a real problem.

It starts innocently enough, just a little staying up late hanging out at the bowl. Then you get the howling loudly at inappropriate hours and refusing to obey. Some of them shred their toys with no apparent regard for the consequence; many of them develop a passion for jaywalking.

My vet said they are like dogs who have lost their legs. They never grow new ones. Without legs, the males can’t lift them. They dribble their pee everywhere, on rugs and carpets, even right next to the beer bowl, refusing to leave it for even a moment. The sad fact is that many of them have lost the power to choose whether they will drink this or not. They must have it, and they will pester you and pester you until you pour them more.

Please, for the sake of Walden & Twodogs, for Bunny & Olive, for Bob, Charlie & Lucy…for our canine friends everywhere….boycott this product.

Monday, January 29, 2007

The Twelve Spiritual Principles

Step 1. We admitted that we were powerless over alcohol - that our lives had become unmanageable.

Step 2. Came to believe that a power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity.

Step 3. Made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God as we understood him.

Step 4. Made a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves.

Step 5. Admitted to God, to ourselves, and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs.

Step 6. Were entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of character.

Step 7. Humbly asked Him to remove our shortcomings.

Brotherly Love
Step 8. Made a list of all persons we had harmed, and became willing to make amends to them all.

Step 9. Made direct amends to such people wherever possible, except when to do so would injure them or others.


Step 10. Continued to take personal inventory and when we were wrong promptly admitted it.

Step 11. Sought through prayer and meditation to improve our conscious contact with God as we understood Him, praying only for knowledge of his will for us and the power to carry that out.

Step 12. Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these steps, we tried to carry this message to others, especially alcoholics and to practice these principles in all our affairs.

Friday, January 26, 2007

Pandora's Box

Our Wed night meeting topic followed the reading in Just For Today: Isolation. All of the ways that Isolation cut us off from life when we were practicing our addictions; and how working a program of recovery can restore us to the life we were intended to live.

I show up at meetings to share my experience, strength and hope. This meeting was no different. I shared freely about the time in my life when I cut myself off from family, friends, spirituality and truth, hopelessly mired in my disease. I talked about lying, cheating and stealing. I shared about compromised morals and a complete loss of integrity. I also shared the hardest memories too, since there were other mothers in the room. These were memories concerning my daughter. The opportunities that were lost to her, the conditions she was forced to live in, and the hardships of my life that she witnessed at a very impressionable age. I try to wrap up all of my sharing with solution, so I did that too…. I described how it is today thanks to my program and a Power greater than myself that has restored my life.

I’m writing about this because I am uncomfortable and deeply sad today. For the first time ever I walked out of a meeting and my sharing has haunted me. Memories of this time in my life are flooding back. This has all been covered in my step work; will it ever stop hurting? Does shame ever completely go away? Are we ever really free of the bondage of self?

Today I do regret the past. Today I do wish to close the door on it. Forgive me.

My sponsor has directed me to the story of Pandora’ Box:

In Greek mythology, Pandora was the first woman on earth. Zeus ordered Hephaestus, the god of craftsmanship, to create her and he did, using water and earth. The gods endowed her with many talents; Aphrodite gave her beauty, Apollo music, Hermes persuasion, and so forth. Hence her name: Pandora, "all-gifted".
Pandora had a box which she was not to open under any circumstance. Impelled by her natural curiosity, Pandora opened the box, and all evil contained escaped and spread over the earth. She hastened to close the lid, but the whole contents of the box had escaped, except for one thing which lay at the bottom, and that was Hope.

Today I will hold on to Hope. If there is one thing I know it is that This Too Shall Pass.

Tuesday, January 23, 2007


Just in case you think you're the only one having a bad day.......

Monday, January 22, 2007


"We grow by our willingness to face and rectify errors and convert them into assets."

page 124 Big Book

Sunday, January 21, 2007

Sunday Morning Blessings

We work so damn hard, sometimes I wonder “how did I get here?” or “is it all really worth it?” At moments like that I need to take a moment to reflect on where I came from; where I am going; and ultimately to bring my mind back into the NOW.

The NOW is where my Higher Power speaks to me. The NOW is where an awareness of the true blessings of my life are revealed.

My husband is 17 years clean and sober, works a kick ass program and makes his living as a mortgage broker. He also devotes himself to hiking or climbing every weekend and is active in sober softball. His schedule is a nightmare.

I work as a controller for a company at quite a distance, so my job requires a long commute. I’d like to think I work a good program, so I hit at least 3 meetings a week. Some nights I drag myself home after a long day and I think “WTF? I’m too tired to think.” I throw being a wife, mother, friend, sponsor and HUMAN into the mix, and it overwhelms me. It’s tax time now and I’ve got my head in a craze about all of the work that needs to done.

Often it feels like Patrick and I are just ships passing in the night; each of us on our way to somewhere else.

I say that’s how it feels. The reality is, when I am willing to bring my head into this day, this moment, this NOW, our life together is full of sweet quiet moments. I just need to quiet my mind and open my eyes.

This morning we sat in the living room with the Sunday paper and the sun coming through the window. Patrick started a wrestling match with Lucy, and Bob and Charlie jumped in. It was great, it was a gift of our sobriety that I would have missed if my mind was cluttered and thinking ahead to all of the work that needs to be done.

I wonder how many other gifts I miss out on?

Meditation for the Day
I will take the most crowded day without fear. I believe that God is with me and controlling all. I will let confidence be the motif running through all the crowded day. I will not get worried, because I know that God is my helper. Underneath are the everlasting arms. I will rest in them, even though the day is full of things crowding in upon me.

Prayer for the Day
I pray that I may be calm and let nothing upset me. I pray that I may not let material things control me and choke out spiritual things.

From Twenty Four Hours a Day

Friday, January 19, 2007

Welcome Wagon

I've been enjoying a new sober blogger from London. Drop in and give him a comment if you will! http://odetoanightingale.blogspot.com/

Check The Small Print

I once had a rose named after me and I was very flattered.

But I was not pleased to read the description in the catalog:

"No good in a bed, but fine against a wall."

-- Eleanor Roosevelt

Thursday, January 18, 2007


When I started blogging in August I really had no expectations. I’ve learned in my recovery program that often it is best to put effort into something (anything) without investing in the outcome. I’ve never been good at keeping a journal. I’ve had thoughts, memories, moments of clarity and epiphanies that I meant to jot down somewhere, but I never did. Time went by and some were lost forever.

I’ve always liked to write, but thought I needed some greater purpose to “put pen to paper”. My sponsor pointed me to blogging and I thought WTF I could do this!

The gifts of this experience have been similar to the gifts of working a program of recovery. They far far exceed anything I could possibly have imagined. I have had the honor and privilege of meeting and bonding with people from all over the country and even the globe. I have learned that the road we trudge is the same road.. Whether it is AA, NA, CA, Alanon, or just people dealing with life on life's own terms. WE ARE ONE.

I have shared my experience, strength and hope at a gut level and a heart to heart level with perfect strangers who somehow know me, who SEE ME, who “get me”. I have grown to love them. Likewise, I have been able to reach out to them, and without fail the answers come. My Higher Power speaks to me in mysterious ways.

These are troubled times for humanity. The saving grace for me is knowing that there are people everywhere who face common challenges, share common fears and suffer similar setbacks. And still they trudge. It doesn’t matter what religion we practice, FAITH unites us. Faith that we will prevail because we have turned our will and our lives over to the CARE of a power greater than ourselves.

For those of you who are part of my blogging community, thank you. My gratitude is deep. And for those of you who are not, look at the above picture, and meet some of the dearest, finest, most loving souls God ever created.

They knew they had a host of new friends; it seemed they had known these strangers always. They had seen miracles, and one was to come to them. They had visioned the Great Reality -- their loving and All Powerful Creator.

From A Vision For You Page 161 Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous

Sunday, January 14, 2007

Seventh Tradition

A one dollar bill ran into a twenty dollar bill at the bank one day and struck up a conversation. “So,how’s it going? asked the One. Where you been?” “Oh, the usual”, said the Twenty. “Restaurants, clubbing, went on a cruise actually, and made it down to Mexico a few times. How about you?” asked the Twenty?

“Oh, the usual” said the One … “meetings, meetings, meetings.”

Thursday, January 11, 2007

Evolving Spiritual Journey

"I know that faith in my Higher Power will not calm the storms of life, but it will calm my heart. I will let my faith shelter me in times of trouble."

Just For Today Daily Meditation January 11

Tuesday, January 09, 2007


You think so ??

Sunday, January 07, 2007

Nothing To Fear

I had a using dream last night. I never know why they happen. Maybe this time it’s because I have an ear infection and there are pain meds in the house. (A time for vigilance.) What is interesting about the dream is what I learned from it. Normally when I have a dream like that, I wake up and try to shake it off. But lately I’ve become more willing to acknowledge ALL of my feelings, the good, the bad, and even the hideous. I bow to them, but they do not own me.

What surprised me about the dream is that I don’t remember the high. I didn’t dream anything about the circumstance at all…only that I had used and now I was faced with the terrible dilemma of the cover up.

In the BB Chapter Into Action it says “More than most people, the alcoholic leads a double life. He is very much the actor. To the outer world he presents his stage character. This is the one he likes his fellows to see. He wants to enjoy a certain reputation, but knows in his heart he doesn't deserve it.” This was me. I would go to any length to hide the reality of life. I lied, I isolated, and I cut myself off from friends and family. I built a house of cards, one lie supporting another, desperate to keep it all standing. Fear and constant despair, I was terrified on a daily basis.

In my dream I was desperate to hide the relapse. I schemed, lied, denied and watched myself sink into despair. It was good to wake up. I would like to think that my Higher Power tapped me on the shoulder and said “wake now, but take these reminders with you:”

We are only as sick as our secrets
Half measures avail us nothing
With honesty, open mindedness and willingness we are half way there

In my wakeful mind I know there is no shame in relapse. I would like to think I would never ever attempt to hide it, if I was so unfortunate. No, I think the point of the dream was to remind me that there are always aspects of our disease that are alive and well, just below the surface. I must be mindful. Secrets, lies, cover-ups, even if they are casual , are still secrets, lies and cover-ups. They are half measures. When might I cross the line?

Ultimately, the recovery we find in NA is something different: a chance at a new life. We've been given tools to clear the wreckage from our lives. We have been given support in courageously setting forth on a new path. And we've been given the gift of conscious contact with a Power greater than ourselves, providing us with the inner strength and direction we so sorely lacked in the past.

Recovering? Yes, in every way. We're recovering a whole new life, better than anything we ever dreamed possible. We are grateful.

Just For Today, Sunday Jan 7, 2007

Wednesday, January 03, 2007


Good bye to my sweet daughter Jolie. Vaya con Dios until we are together again.

It is difficult for us to learn something when we believe that all teaching should go in one direction. How much we miss in that arrogance.

Perhaps one of the reasons my child was chosen for me as a parent was because I had so much to learn.

From Meditations for Women Who Do Too Much by Anne Wilson Schaef