Sunday, July 29, 2012


Tonight I am reflecting on yet another amazing weekend and feeling it is time for yet another gratitude list.  It is hard to know where to begin tonight since I have so many blessings to be grateful for.  I guess I will start with Alcoholics Anonymous.  I wish I had the words to describe the amount of gratitude I have tonight for this program.  I cannot nor do I wish to imagine where my life would be today with out AA...  It is the sole reason I have all the other things that I will mention in this post that I am grateful for.  For those of you that new me at the very end of my active addiction, you know how bad things had become, cops, trips to the hospital, no job.  I had completely fallen apart.  Today, a little less that nine months after leaving Denver to get sober, I am a completely different person.  I could type out a huge list that could go on forever, but, here are just a few things this program has helped me achieve.  The first and most important, with the help of my amazing sponsor, I have found a higher power and welcomed him into my life.  Having had a spiritual awakening, I am finally at peace, with my self and life from day to day. I have no more fear, which, was one of the main reasons of my drinking and drugging.  The gaping hole in my heart, that I tried to fill for years with cocaine and whiskey, is all filled up, with love, joy, and security.  I know with out a doubt, that if God kept me alive when I should have been dead, I will be ok and can handle anything life has to through at me.  All of my relationships have prospered, even the difficult ones, because I now have a set of tools to use in my every day life which I have never had.  This program has brought me friends that came with out judgement and a crooked finger full of blame.  This program has also saved the life of my special person....  There will never be enough action or money for the basket for me to show my humility and gratitude for saving our lives...  All I can do is try my hardest every day to be a stronger, wiser , braver, more loving person.  I don't think we would both be alive today if it weren't for the program and people of Alcoholics Anonymous.  Thank you GOD, for all your blessings...

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Love Pt. 2

Unable to sleep tonight, I have the Colorado shooting rolling around in my head and how it relates to the conversation I wrote about in my previous post.  That conversation occurred only a few hours before the shooting and I told my friend that, and I left this out of my last post, I would be willing to die for the woman I love.  Since then I have thought about over and over the people in my life I would be willing to sacrifice myself for.  There are those obvious answers, my little sister, my brother in law, my niece, my mother and father.  Then I think there are a few choice friends that I would be willing to jump in front of a bullet for.  But when it comes to your mate, your other half, is there any question?  This, now after a few days of reflection, is a pivotal part of the idea I call love.  The willingness to ALWAYS put the well fair of my person above mine.  Now, my fellow alcoholic friend asked.  You want her to die for you to prove her love?  Of course not, I answered.  But put in the same situation as the three young men that died protecting the women they loved in the shooting, I would act no differently.  This to me is what defines true love.  A gift so amazing, a sacrifice of the ultimate kind is my only choice....  My hat goes off to those young men!  Rest in Peace!

Below is the link to an article about these three young men.

Sunday, July 22, 2012


As I sit here tonight at my desk, listening to the soulful sounds of Lucero, I am pondering these questions.  What is love?   And what does it mean to truly love someone?  Webster's dictionary defines the noun love as strong affection for another arising out of kinship or personal ties. Also as an attraction based on sexual desire or an affection and tenderness felt by lovers and affection based on admiration, benevolence, or common interests.  The definition of the verb love is to hold dear, to cherish, or to feel a lover's passion, devotion, or tenderness for or to caress and to fondle amorously, to copulate with.  It is also defined as: to like or desire actively:  to take pleasure in.  I find it interesting that even though I do agree with these definitions there is no description of what makes someone feel the love itself.  In case you are wondering this is all stemming from a conversation I had last night with a fellow alcoholic.  It is said that we “alcoholics” remain the age we were when we started drinking.  So the conversation started with this and our concepts of love.  Are the concepts we have on the subject of love based on the way we thought about love as 15 and 16 year olds?  She started drinking at 15 and me at 16.  So does this mean that the ideas we have on love are completely skewed?  She seems to think so, at least for herself.  So this got me thinking about what my own ideas are on the subject...  Maybe you can decide if my thoughts on love are one’s of a teenager or one’s of a 38 year old grown man.

So I could try and start with my ideas about the different kinds of love.  The love we have for family and friends, but that is not where my mind is tonight.  Those of you that know me well know that I am focusing on the love we have for a mate.  The romantic side of the subject is where I find myself tonight questioning my own thoughts.   I shared with my friend last night that my definition of love is a feeling for someone that I do not want to live without.  So what is inherent in the other person that makes me not want to live without them?  I will keep the things to myself that makes me love the woman I do, but I will share with you some things that I do believe define a loving relationship. Loyalty is at the top of the list for me.  This is something that is hard to come by the older we get, so the person I am in love with should be loyal… If you are my person, I will defend you, right or wrong.  I will always be on your side, when facing the outside world.   The concept of loyalty then leads to trust.  Without trust, what do we have?  I have to trust you with my most intimate feelings.  Things I don’t share with anyone, even my sponsor.  I also have to trust that my person will remain faithful…  We live in a world full of infidelity and temptation.  Sure there are plenty of beautiful people out in the world away from our mates, but for me this is something that is a must…  For me, the love that I have, makes it hard for me to even imagine being with another woman.  SO I definitely expect the same out of a mate.  The next component to my love for a mate is the friendship.  The ability to enjoy each other’s company is so important.  To laugh, to talk, and to sit in complete silence and not ever feel uncomfortable with each other is so important to me.  The last thing I am going to touch on is this simple question.  Does my mate challenge me every day?  Does she challenge me to be a stronger, smarter, kinder, wiser, more compassionate person?  And do I push her the same way?  I will always have room to be a better lover, son, friend, brother, sponsor, and employee…  These are a few things that define my love…  What defines yours?

I will leave you tonight with this quote from one of my favorite authors.

“We all have the potential to fall in love a thousand times in our lifetime. It's easy. The first girl I ever loved was someone I knew in sixth grade. Her name was Missy; we talked about horses. The last girl I love will be someone I haven't even met yet, probably. They all count. But there are certain people you love who do something else; they define how you classify what love is supposed to feel like. These are the most important people in your life, and you’ll meet maybe four or five of these people over the span of 80 years. But there’s still one more tier to all this; there is always one person you love who becomes that definition. It usually happens retrospectively, but it happens eventually. This is the person who unknowingly sets the template for what you will always love about other people, even if some of these loveable qualities are self-destructive and unreasonable. The person who defines your understanding of love is not inherently different than anyone else, and they’re often just the person you happen to meet the first time you really, really, want to love someone. But that person still wins. They win, and you lose. Because for the rest of your life, they will control how you feel about everyone else.” ― Chuck Klosterman, Killing Yourself to Live: 85% of a True Story

Good night, God bless, and don’t forget to pray!

Monday, July 16, 2012

Everything is Everywhere

My mind is all over the place tonight, hence the title of this entry.  Hopefully I will be able to find the words to get it all out...  Tonight there are thoughts about fear, the truth, self realization, and detachment.  Throw all that in with a new sales quota, eight days into quitting smoking, and starting an extreme exercise regiment that includes playing soccer and I have a full plate!

So I guess I will start with the fear.  Tonight on the way home from my Ala-Non meeting I realized that after what I have put myself through with all the drugs and booze, there is nothing life could throw at me to fear.  I can remember two nights that I thought for sure I was having a heart attack.  I was so high, I thought for sure, I was going to die.  Left arm hurting, pains in my chest, blurred vision, and  was too scared to call 911.  I don't think I have ever been more scared than I was at those moments.  I have been so messed up on LSD, I have hallucinated things that were not there and could not speak English, only French, or at least I thought.  I don't know any French... Or at least I did not at the time.   The only time I saw Jerry Garcia I thought all my friends were cops and I thought the top of the Omni in Atlanta was a spaceship, and it was going to take off.  I was terrified out of mind.  I cannot think of anything that could occur in life to ever be scared like I was at those moments.  Drugs and alcohol kicked me harder than anything ever has, and today I have grown to look my fears in the eyes and realize that they are just a feeling and not as real as I think those heart attacks where.  It feels so good to be able to KNOW, I no longer live in any type of fear.  I have beat my addictions into submission, before they had the chance to take my life.

Now that I have the fear out of the way, on to the truth.  We drug addicts and alcoholics are the best liars I have ever met.  We are masters at hiding everything from everyone that loves us, including our selves...  I lied to my self more than I lied to anyone.  And I lied to everyone everyday in one way or another.  After, some time sober and the fog begins to clear and some of these lies start to come to the surface, it is almost like freeing a political refugee.  The weight that is lifted, is amazing.  I think this is why God allows us to get that feeling in our stomach when we lie.  It is a burden to carry around.  And Lies come in all shapes in sizes.  If you don't ask and I don't tell you, knowing that I should is still a lie.  I was talking to a fellow alcoholic last night who shared with me about coming clean about a relationship with her parents.  She had only allowed them to see one side of it for a very long time.   After a few hours sober she realized it was time to "come clean" and set the record straight.  Now everyone is on the same page and that is a relief.  It is always a wonderful thing to see the light slowly come back on in people in recovery.  The truth will set you free....

Last Monday at five pm, I smoked the last cigarette in the pack on the way home from work. On the ride home, I stopped and bought the patch, and have been smoke free now for eight days.  Just like drugs and alcohol, I realized I am powerless over cigarettes and my life had become unmanageable. My life for a long time had been influenced by my smoking.  I am sure all you smokers understand what that means with out me having to type it all out.  Anyways, as of Monday I had had enough.  I was going to quit.  Plus, I knew that soccer practice was starting this past Saturday, and if I wanted to play and enjoy it, I had to quit.  So, just like quitting drinking and drugging, I made up my mind and quit with some help.  I have followed the guidelines to quitting successfully on the website and slowly but surely the cravings are going away.  But cravings or not, I don't smoke anymore.  I don't know what feels better, knowing that I will never smoke again, or feeling my body getting healthier everyday.  Here is where the self realization comes into play.  I have tried to quit smoking more times than I can count.  At best, I would make it three days...  So what is different today you might ask.  Today, I have a faith in a higher power that I have never had.  "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."  This is why I KNOW I have smoked my last cigarette, just as much as I KNOW I have tasted my last drink and ingested my last drug.  Never again!  I am free!

The last thing I am going to share about tonight is detachment.  Learning how to detach my self with love from my the people that I love, friends, family members, potential sponsees that are alcoholics.  I have several relationships with alcoholics today, some of them are very strong, and very important to me, and yet I have to learn not to let there disease rule my life the way I tried to rule the lives of people in my life during active addiction.  Now of course, the alcoholics that I have relationships with are in recovery, but that does not mean the "Alcoholic Behavior" disappears.  We are sick people and will be for life and it takes a lot of work to keep our selves in check, spiritually, physically, and emotionally.  So for these reasons I have started going to Ala-Non.  Tonight, I learned that even though I want to help the person I love the most, or even be a part their life, I have to get out of the way, and let them figure it out on their own.  I cannot be a distraction, and ultimately, I have to mind my own business.  I have to learn to be selfless and love from a far for a while.  This will allow the healing to run its course with out distraction or influence from me.  Sure it is hard and painful but it is something that I must learn how to do...  Once again, and this is for you Susan, the goal is progress, not perfection.

I will leave you with this..  A friend of mine who is a fellow alcoholic and drug addict said to me tonight and I quote; "Yes, Erin, you are an anomaly.  The reason this program works for you is because you ARE a raging alcoholic and a raging drug addict, and God made this program for people just like you.  And you get it.  Through this program you will have success and with out it you WILL DIE!"

AA has saved my life and I am so so so very grateful today!

God night and God bless!


Detachment is neither kind nor unkind. It
does not imply judgement or condemnation
of the person or situation from which we are
detaching. Separating ourselves from the
adverse effects of another person’s alcoholism
can be a means of detaching: this does
not necessarily require physical separation.
Detachment can help us look at our situations
realistically and objectively.
Alcoholism is a family disease. Living
with the effects of someone else’s drinking
is too devastating for most people to bear
without help.
In Al-Anon we learn nothing we say or do
can cause or stop someone else’s drinking.
We are not responsible for another person’s
disease or recovery from it.
Detachment allows us to let go of our
obsession with another’s behavior and begin
to lead happier and more manageable lives,
lives with dignity and rights, lives guided by
a Power greater than ourselves. We can still
love the person without liking the behavior.
• Not to suffer because of the actions or
reactions of other people
• Not to allow ourselves to be used or
abused by others in the interest of
another’s recovery
• Not to do for others what they can do
for themselves
• Not to manipulate situations so others
will eat, go to bed, get up, pay bills, not
drink, or behave as we see fit
• Not to cover up for another’s mistakes
or misdeeds
• Not to create a crisis
• Not to prevent a crisis if it is in the natural
course of events

By learning to focus on ourselves, our
attitudes and well-being improve. We allow
the alcoholics in our lives to experience the
consequences of their own actions.

Saturday, July 14, 2012


God, please forgive me for sins old and new.  Please show me how to be a better man.  Please allow me to accept the ones I love as they are!


Friday, July 13, 2012


I Was Wrong lyrics
Songwriters: Ness, Mike;

When I was young, I was so full of fear
I hid behind anger, held back the tears
It was me against the world, I was sure that I'd win
The world fought back, punished me for my sins

I felt so alone, so insecure
I blamed you instead and made sure I was heard
And they tried to warn me of my evil ways
But I couldn't hear what they had to say

I was wrong
Self destruction's got me again
I was wrong
I realized now that I was wrong

And I think about my loves, well I've had a few
I'm sorry that I hurt them, did I hurt you too
I took what I wanted, put my heart on the shelf
Now how can you love me when you don't love yourself

It was me against the world, I was sure that I'd win
The world fought back, punished me for my sins

And they tried to warn me of my evil ways
But I couldn't hear what they had to say

I was wrong
Self destruction's got me again
I was wrong
I realized now that I was wrong

I was wrong, yeah
I was wrong

I grew up fast, I grew up hard
Something was wrong from the very start
I was fighting everybody, I was fighting everything
But the only one that I hurt was me

I got society's blood running down my face
Somebody help me get outta this place
How could someone's bad luck last so long
Until I realized that I was wrong

I was wrong
Self destruction's got me again
I was wrong
I realized now that I was wrong

I was wrong
Self destruction's got me again
I was wrong
The only one that I hurt was me

I was wrong

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

More Gratitude!

Just a quick note!  This has been a terribly hard week for a lot of reasons...  All of which have been brought on by my self!  The great thing is that I am not walking alone.  Today I have God, and with that faith, I will get by, with only just enough.  Not what I want, only what I need!  More to come on this subject as the week goes by!  I am exhausted!   Good night and God Bless!


Wednesday, July 11, 2012

You are reading from the book Twenty Four Hours a Day Hardcover (24 Hours)
A.A. Thought for the Day

We in Alcoholics Anonymous do not try to chart the path for the human soul or try to lay out a blueprint of the working of faith, as one might plan a charity drive. We do tell the newcomer that we have renewed our faith in a Higher Power. In the telling, our faith is further renewed. We believe that faith is always close at hand, waiting for those who will listen to the heartbeat of the spirit. We believe there is a force for good in the universe and that if we link up with this force, we are carried onward to a new life. Am I in this stream of goodness?

Meditation for the Day

God will protect you from the forces of evil, if you will rely on Him. You can face all things through the power of God, which strengthens you. Once God has set on you His stamp and seal of ownership, all His strength will serve and protect you. Remember that you are a child of the Father. Realize that the Father's help is always ready and available to all His children, so that they can face anything. God will do all that is necessary for your spiritual well-being, if you will let Him live His way.

Prayer for the Day

I pray that I may rely on God as I go through this day. I pray that I may feel deeply secure, no matter what happens to me.


God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change,
Courage to change the things I can,
And wisdom to know the difference.

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Fear or Gratitude?

I had a long conversation last night with a fellow alcoholic about fear. Fear was a huge trigger for this alcoholic for a very long time.  Fear of not being liked, fear of failure, fear of rejection, fear of loss, and the fear of success are just a few things that I used as excuses to go out and use drugs and abuse alcohol.  Last night in this conversation I shared with my friend that I have been hearing a lot of fear lately about drinking and using and how it has started to frustrate me.  I no longer have to live with those fears nor do I want to.  Is fearing a relapse the best way for me to think so I dont?  Of course not.  I KNOW I will be dead in three days, three weeks, or three months if I go back to that life.  Is it something I need to fear today?  Absolutley not.  It is a simple fact of my life.  Fear is a feeling not a fact.  And the facts of my life determine how I live today!  What I also know to be a fact is that I do not go out and drink because of all the blessings I have in my life today because I am sober!  Fact, my relationship with my family is 100% better than it has ever been.  Grateful!  Fact, I have a fantastic career again with the opportunity to make a comfortable life for myself! Grateful!  Fact, I have an amazing relationship with God, that allows me to handle any situation that may arise! Grateful! Fact, I have the love and encourgement from a group of friends that I have never had!  Grateful!  Fact, I have peace today that I have never had in my entire life!  Grateful!  Fact, I have had and will awlays have the opportunity of helping another drug addict and alcoholic!  Grateful!  Fact, I love myself today and it shows! Grateful! Fact, I have a beautiful baby neice! Grateful!  Fact, today these are the blessings in my life that give a reason to stay sober.  These are the reasons that give me the strength to handle situations that use to baffle me!  Life is and will forever be full of challenges and ups and downs and today I have the courage and faith in my self and my higher power to make sure I ALWAYS TRY to do the next right thing!  Progress not perfection.  This is my experience, strength, and hope today!

Remember to pray today!  It works!

Gratefully Recovering!