Category Archives: Sober Living

Open Letter to My Sponsor…

I started Celebrate Recovery 9 months ago. 9 months ago next week, I took a 24 hour token. Stating that I was ready to commit to a new way of life and surrender my life and will to the loving care of God. 

The woman who would later become my sponsor is a program leader and the more the attended meeting and learned about her story the more I realized that our walk was very much alike and she is a beautiful example of a loving wife and mother in recovery. 

So one day, I took a chance and asked her to be my sponsor. And this was the beginning of a beautiful friendship. She took my hand and said lets do this. 

  

Dear J –

You are so amazing as my sponsor. You ask me the right questions. You understand how I think. You call me out and lift me up. You remind me that I’m strong and special and am enough. You extend grace to me when I need it and allow me the opportunity to figure things out in my timing. 

You cry with me and for me. When you say ‘I’m so sorry’, I know you mean it to your core that you are so sorry for what happened to me. 

You kept me balanced when doing step 4 and supported me when I said I just wasn’t ready to finish my step 4 on my mom. Many hard conversations during that step. Many many tears and raw emotion.

I love that you love that I blog about my recovery journey. You are supporting me with leading my first meeting with a concept that inspired me that I found in a pod cast. And have been so supportive of me putting this teaching together. Your excitement gets me even more excited. 

This week we are starting a step study with a group of women. I’ve excited to dive deeper with you in this study and commitment to the program. 

Friendships that are born out of recovery are different from other friendships. We know so much about each other. We support each other in all aspects of my life. 

You have helped me reconginize where I need to create boundaries and have pointed out that I’ve made boundaries without even realizing it. 

I would not have made the process I have in 9 months without 1.my willingness and commitment for a better life and 2. your commitment to me and loving guidance. The perfect recipe for sponsor/sponsee. 

Thank you for walking along side me. For holding my hand and telling me how proud you are of me. 

Celebrate Recovery and the 12 steps are becoming part of who I am. It’s become natural and sometimes I catch myself using recovery lingo or phrases or a scripture reference and think to myself….wow look at that I understand now. Look at where I’m heading. It’s a beautiful thing. 

Continue on this journey with me, the best is yet to be. 

This girls journey to serenity continues….

Haunted by ghosts that lived in my past….but I’ve Been Redeemed You Set Me FREE

Today started off as a typical day. 2 Sons at work and my youngest and I were home. I made a list of things to do including some outdoor stuff that I wanted to be finished sooner rather than later because of the heat. 

I live in a townhouse and have a pretty small yard. Really too big for a push mower so I have a small electric mower. I got the mover out of shed and headed out the back gate to walk around to the front yard. 

When I opened the gate, in the grass just outside the gate was a plastic beer bottle. It was a 40 oz and was the brand my ex would drink. 

For a split second, I was frozen in my tracks at the thought that it was his. As quick as that feeling came, it went. It was just trash. It held no power. It held no feelings. It does not define me or a time in my life. It’s not mine. 

My day continued to be a typical day. 

How far I have come in my recovery in the last 110 days. It makes me smile to know that ghosts from my past, hold no power. That only with the grace of God and me working my program was I able to not be rattled by seeing that garbage in the grass. 

After I cut the grass, I did some trimming and went in the front door for water and to take a break. A bit later I had to run get my son from work. I took the mower back around to the back shed. I don’t even remember seeing the beer bottle that time. 

As soon as I got in the car to get my son, this song played.

  
BIG DADDY WEAVE LYRICS
“Redeemed”
Seems like all I could see was the struggle
Haunted by ghosts that lived in my past
Bound up in shackles of all my failures
Wondering how long is this gonna last
Then You look at this prisoner and say to me “son
Stop fighting a fight it’s already been won”
I am redeemed, You set me free
So I’ll shake off these heavy chains
Wipe away every stain, now I’m not who I used to be
I am redeemed, I’m redeemed
All my life I have been called unworthy
Named by the voice of my shame and regret
But when I hear You whisper, “Child lift up your head”
I remember, oh God, You’re not done with me yet
I am redeemed, You set me free
So I’ll shake off these heavy chains
Wipe away every stain, now I’m not who I used to be
Because I don’t have to be the old man inside of me
‘Cause his day is long dead and gone

Because I’ve got a new name, a new life, I’m not the same
And a hope that will carry me home

I am redeemed, You set me free

So I’ll shake off these heavy chains

Wipe away every stain, ’cause I’m not who I used to be

I am redeemed, You set me free

So I’ll shake off these heavy chains

Wipe away every stain, yeah, I’m not who I used to be

Oh, God, I’m not who I used to be

Jesus, I’m not who I used to be

‘Cause I am redeemed

Thank God, redeemed

This new life and way of thinking with recovery is so amazing. I am so grateful for the Celebrate Recovery program and those to attend and support each other. I am so grateful for my sponsor who is helping to guide me while I work the steps, and I am so very grateful that I am willing to live life differently, with God first and trusting His plan. 

My journey to serenity continues….

When life kicks you…

Felt a little kicked this week but I will NOT let the actions of others derail my progress. 

Stuff with my ex husband (and his relationship with our kids) and ex boyfriend (him taking me to court to dissolve my protective order) has been stressful but DID NOT spin me out like it may have just a few months ago. 

You can kick me but know it’s just going to make me stronger and push me forward!!! 

And soon enough you’ll get tired of kicking because I’m not reacting like I used to and what a great feeling this is!!!

 
 My journey to serenity continues…
PS while I did not paint this graphic, I did design it =] 

Seasons…

I love when periods of time of life are described as seasons. 

I’ve been thinking about what season my life is in. I am recovering from an abuse relationship. I am understanding how my codependent nature contributed to that relationship and how it kept me stuck. I am mourning what could have been. I am learning to forgive, trust and love myself again. I am seeking a relationship with God. I am in a season of growth. I am in a season of time to build up. I am in a season of speaking and share my story. 

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What does the bible say about seasons?Ecclesiastes 3:1-8 For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven: a time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up what is planted; a time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up; a time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance; a time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together; a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing; a time to seek, and a time to lose; a time to keep, and a time to cast away; a time to tear, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence, and a time to speak; a time to love, and a time to hate; a time for war, and a time for peace. 

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No matter the season, be present where you are. 

Know that God uses us to shine light on each other’s darkness. Knowingly or unknowingly, He is using my story and your story for others. The bible is full of storys about what season someone was in and those stories help us today. There was fear and shame and joy and promise.

  
I have had some sad seasons. Loss of my parents, loss of a 18 year marriage. Loss of material things. Loss of self. Loss of a what I thought could be. Having been in these seasons, they have made me the person I am today. Still growing, still rebuilding, still flawed but also loving and caring and enough just the way that I am. 

Don’t wish a season away. Be present. 

My journey to serenity continues…
PS I painted the picture used in this post

Are you ready to start your recovery? Ask these 2 questions…

 
No matter the addiction if you want to make a change in your life because something is unmanageable, the place to start is asking these two questions….

HAVE YOU HAD ENOUGH???

ARE YOU WILLING TO TRY A NEW WAY OF LIVING???

When you can answer them both honestly, YES, you are ready. It’s not easy. You need support. You need a program and a sponsor. 

It’s hard work to dig deep and look at the dark places in our life. But healing those places will allow you to shine bright. Shine your light so bright that you brighten someone else’s darkness. 

That is what God has put on my heart. Share my story so someone else knows they are not alone and there is hope in recovery. 

If you have not read my other posts, I am codependent and was in a relationship with an acholic who I’ve known off and on for 20 plus years. At the end, he binged drinks…for months he drank. He lost his job and I kicked him out. He walked into my home when I was not there and scared my son. I have a protective order against him. When he got out of jail, he would walk by my home. He stood on the corner watching me come and go. I tried hard not to show my kids how scared I was but I don’t know how successful I was. In that moment I was forever changed. 

For months and months I was afraid. I slept on the sofa to guard my home and protect my family. What if my ex came in the house again? I wanted to be right there and give him no reason to go upstairs. I slept with one eye open and one ear listening for outside noise. Even when I knew he had left the area, I was frozen in fear. 

I had to surrender control to its rightful owner, God. My life was unmanageable. God knows the end of my story. There is a beautiful plan for me. I have to trust that He will continue to move mountains for me and my journey to serenity.

NOT my Circus. NOT my Monkey…

Hi my name is Mar and I am codependent. 

We all come into any relationship or friendship with ‘stuff’ from our prior relationships and how we learned to cope with life.  

Some stuff is good while other stuff, well not so much. 

 I come to the table being a fixer. I am a home owner and run the household and solve problems by myself. I am a single parent and help my kids resolve conflict and manage schedules by myself. I have bills to pay and I manage my money by myself. I work for a service company and with every phone call, I resolve a problem or answer a question. I am a fixer. 

I got into a relationship with an alcholic who at the start was dry but not sober. But I didn’t know the difference at the time. 

A dry alcholic is someone who is not drinking but may be in denial that they have a problem and is just one step away from drinking. Or someone who is substituting one addiction for another like over working or over eating and not dealing with the underline issues. 

While sobriety is a journey where the person deals with the underline cause of the addiction and has a support system and tools to cope differently when life happens. 

Suddenly I was dealing with all my monkeys (house, kids, job) plus someone else’s problem monkeys that were running amok because he started drinking (drinking, lost his job, not paying support, court dates) when life happened. 

    

His first reaction was to find the bottom of a bottle….for days and days then it was weeks and weeks which turned into months and months. During this time there were glimpses of wanting to change. Wants and actions were not speaking the same language. Don’t get me wrong, I know it’s hard. Really really hard. There are a million steps and decision points  between wanting and doing.  Picking him up after detoxing at the hospital for him to drink again as soon as his could his hands on it was inconsistent for sure. Support and tools are available when the person makes the decision to use them. 

My first reaction was to drop my monkeys and try to round up and fix his and get them back in control. Clearly I’m a terrible monkey trainer. As a result, my monkeys started to run amok and I had one mucky circus going on. 

Now that I am no longer in this relationship, I’m back to dealing with my monkeys. I have to say my monkeys and my circus is much easier to deal with now that I have support and tools to help keep them that way. 

I am powerless over being codependent. I believe that only God can restore me to sanity. I know Gods got this and me! I understand myself better. I know I’m a fixer. But I have learned to accept the things I cannot change….the courage to change the things I can….and the wisdom to know the difference. 

  

This Thing Called Grace…

I am overwhelmed by the positive responses, love and support to my first blog post. 

There truly is so much power and healing in sharing yourself with others. It is only by the Grace of God that I am in recovery. 

You now can see strength and courage but what I have felt was shame and embarrassment. And what saved me is this thing called Grace. 

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What does the Bible say about SHAME 1Corinthians 10:13 No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it.

  
What the Bible says about GRACE           2Corinthians 12:9 But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me.



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While religion was an important part of my childhood, as I hit my late teens it was not important to me. And my faith became quiet. As I grew older, I felt something was missing in my life. After I got divorced in 2011, I began seeking for what was missing. 

I didn’t know at the time but what I was lacking was a relationship with God. 

I went Church Shopping. I did a few Bible studies but didn’t click with the people in the group nor did I feel I fit into the Church. But I kept seeking. I found a Church home in 2014. I loved what they were teaching. It’s what I was looking for. They were teaching the Bible. They encouraged to join a group and study together. Which is what I did.

I was walking the path that God had planned for me. Or so I thought. 

In 2015, smoke and mirrors covered the truth of the path I was on. I was convinced this was part of Gods plan. And then life happened and the man I was with changed in what seemed like a second. I ignored the warning signs and got caught up in his addiction. Trying to save him from himself became my job. 

Codependent much? 

When I finally hit my bottom, I not only walked away, I ran. 

The Grace and love that God has shown me from friends and family walking along side me during this time brings me to my knees.

I can never repay the countless people who knowing and unknowingly supported me. But what I can do, is share my story. I can celebrate my recovery. I can shine my light bright. So bright that I shine on someone else’s darkness.