My Truth

Got coping tools? YES I DO

In this world of uncertainty that we have found ourselves in, I started feeling anxious and overwhelmed while at the grocery store tonight.

I walked down aisle after aisle and found empty shelves and choices were limited. I was hit in the face with how real this is. The restaurant in the same parking lot was empty and the coffee shop was dark.

I felt that I needed to remind myself of all the tools and new ways of coping with life when life happens that I have learned from WORKING a recovery program. Cause life is happening right now and while it’s a little unsettling, I know that this will not last forever and God is in control.

I used my tools right away, which was kinda cool that it came so naturally. I reached out to my sponsor and talked to her about how I was I was feeling and why I felt this way. And I found out, that she was feeling the same way. Having a sponsor, accountability partner or trusted friend to talk to is just so important. I know I am not alone in my feelings.

Got coping tools, YES I DO!

Here are some other things that are on top of my toolbox:

πŸ”¨ Eating well. Comfort food is called that for a reason. Often is not the best choice but sure makes me feel good. Adding healthy options like a salad or veggies is a plus. I also tend not to eat and go for long periods of time without eating. So I need to keep planning meals so it’s something I don’t have to think about. I have it written down and know what to do next without having to think about. Making smart food choices will keep me healthy.

πŸ”§ Take meds. Always take your meds as prescribed. It might be a good idea to take a vitamin too.

πŸ”© Exercise. Now that gyms are closing to practice social distancing, there are still lots of options. Can be as simple as going out for a walk. Or going up and down the stairs at home. Or there are tons of online resources on YouTube for workouts at home. If you have a gym membership, they may even have resources on their website or Facebook group. Or how about putting on your favorite music and just dancing!

πŸ”¨ Read. Lots of options here too. From the serenity prayer to the 12 steps and 8 principles (Celebrate Recovery) Can all be found on the CR app or online. The Holy Bible app is another really good one to download. There are many suggestions on the home page of the one I use has references hope and anxiety or I can search programs. Or I have even googled ’what does the Bible say about —- ’ to find really good verses on that topic or feeling. Can always read other stuff too but there are my go.

πŸ”§ Journal. Journaling can help you sort out your feelings. Ask yourself, have I felt this way before? When? Why am I feeling this way? How did I cope last time? Did that help? Why or why not. Tons of journaling books available if you need props too.

πŸ”© Get creative. I enjoy painting but I recently discovered diamond painting which is kinda mindless yet fun. Sometimes I struggle with ideas on what to paint so diamond painting takes the pressure off. Think about what you enjoyed doing as a kid. Did you like to color, crossword puzzles or draw? Give those a try again. You may find a new (old) hobby.

πŸ”¨ Write a thank you or thinking of you note. Send an email or text and check on someone else. Let them know you are thinking about them. Set up a call and share a cup of coffee by phone.

πŸ”§ Do and act of kindness. I cleaned out a cabinet over the weekend and found a few board games that we hadn’t used in years. So I posted on my neighborhood Facebook group and set them outside. They were gone within an hour.

πŸ”© My 100 things list. One of the first things my sponsor had me do was write a list of 100 positive words that described myself. This took me a month and I asked my friends for help and I use the thesauruses. But when it gets in my head that I am not enough, I reread these words to remind myself who I really am.

If you need a place to start, here are some things God says about us from a Bible study I did:

  • I am blessed
  • I am chosen, forgiven, favored and accepted
  • I am made in Gods image
  • I am His child
  • I am victorious and strengthened by Him
  • I am healed, new, delivered, set free and redeemed
  • I am complete
  • I am fearfully and wonderfully made
  • I am His masterpiece
  • And I am loved

πŸ”¨ Listen to Music. Have a playlist on your phone or listen to on of your favorites on YouTube and that song will lead to the next and you just may find a new favorite one.

πŸ”§ You can meditate – there’s an app for that too. I use the free version of ABIDE. It’s a prayer meditation style app which has a list of topics from anger, anxiety to fear or hope. These are short just 2-5 minutes meditations.

Using these πŸ”¨ πŸ”§ πŸ”© will keep me connected. Connected to God. Connected to myself and my program and connected to others.

This is my final thought. 

From Philippians 4: 8-9

And now dear brothers and sisters, one final thing. Fix your thoughts on what is true and honorable and right and pure and lovely and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise. Keep putting into practice all you learned and received from me and saw me doing. Then the God of peace will be with you.

And the God of peace will be with you….another word for peace is serenity. And the God of serenity will be with you.

Stay well. Stay positive. Take things one day at a time. Stay connected and go wash your hands.

My journey to serenity continues…

My Truth

Judging Others…

One thing I have learned first hand from 12 step recovery meeting rooms has to do with judgment. 

While I was spinning out of control on the codependency/addict merry go round, others didn’t understand what was going on and why I was acting like a crazy person. 

I’d ask for advise (while knowing what I should do) but frozen in being able to take action to change what was going on. And the merry go round went around and around and around again. In some ways it felt safer to do what you know. 

I felt like a crazy person. I didn’t understand what was going on. How did this become my life?

Part of codependency is about what others may think of me if they knew what was going on.  So I would take care of things and make it easier for others. I’d paint the picture of it not being THAT bad. Why? Because I didn’t want to be judged in a negative way or for those around me that I cared about to be judged. The shame I felt that if everyone knew, they would be disappointed in me somehow. Because I was disappointed in myself. 

But then I had to DO something and DO something different because I did not want to spin around one more time. With a ton of work and willingness, my heart started to heal and things started to make sense and more connections were made and my heart healed a little bit more.  

For me when I first started to go to meetings, I felt a lot of things but being judged was not one of them. As I heard others stories and where they were, I didn’t for a second judge them. I felt compassion and empathy and just wanted to love them along their journey. 

What a beautiful gift to share with others in recovery who also at one point may have felt shame for their behavior. Being in a space of not being judged. Being in a safe place to share the darkest of their days. Learning to heal and grow and learning to trust yourself and others around you again. Beautiful thing for sure. 

In the Book of Matthew 7: 2-5 it says this about being judgemental…...Why do you see the speck that is in your brother’s eye, but do not notice the log that is in your own eye?’ 

Wowzers, pretty clear. Why do people do that? Because it’s easy. It’s easy to point out others flaws or sins and not look at yourself and owning your part. 

Reminds me of recovery sayings like….

Stay in your own lane.
Keep your side the street clean.
Keep your spoon in your own bowl.

Or in Romans 3:23 you will find….’For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,’

Yeah hello, everyone has fallen short and who am I to think that my sin is less sinful than someone else’s. Or that this persons sin is so much worse on the sin scale. (Is that a thing?)  Makes me laugh to think of times I thought that about someone or a situation. Because I didn’t understand that this is not how it works. 

I would not trade my best day on the codependent/addict merry go round for my worst day off it!!! 

I think this is actually called grace. Going to a year and a half of meetings, I have learned to give grace because grace has been given to me. 

I have learned not to judge because they didn’t judge me. 

My journey to serenity continues….

My Truth, What Does The Bible Say???

You ARE the 5 people you hang around…

Do you not like where your life is???

Do you wish you were in a different place in your relationships or finances or weight???  

Have you ever looked around and wondered how did THIS become my life???

 

I have answered yes to all of these. 

Then I looked around the people I was hanging  with during the  summer of 2015. I discovered that they were in the middle of their addiction or irresponsibility or denial of what was going on. 

I thought…. I wasn’t drinking, not doing drugs, not on public assistance (not that there is anything wrong with it when you need a hand up, just not using it as a life style), not scamming for the next fix, not job searching, sorta, maybe, tomorrow I will, living in an awful place that the owner was in jail and the bank was going to foreclosed on it at some point so why not live there.  And yet there I was in the middle of it. The only one with a job. The only one with a car. The only one with a relationship with my kids. The only one with a roof over my head that was mine. They needed me and for some reason I needed to feel needed. 

The police were called to that awful place all the time. One night I was there when they were called and was wondering why because it was one of the quieter calmer nights. Shortly after the police arrived, I asked if it was ok that I leave. They asked me some questions. When my interview was over, the officer asked me what the hell was doing there? It was almost like a movie ‘what’s a nice girl like you doing in a place like this’. I answered ‘the guy passed out on the floor upstairs in the front bedroom, for some stupid reason i love him and need to get out of this place’.

Pump the breaks. What the hell am I doing. 

I have not talked to anyone from the house is a long time. One passed away in the house. She fell down the stairs and cracked her head on the concrete floor. I was there the night before. And it rattled the house into sobriety for a few days. Three were in jail but today I do not know where any of them are. 

Those 5 people were a mess in their addictions. And I became a different kind of mess right along with them.

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What does the Bible say about the people we hang around???

Proverbs 22:24-25 Make no friendship with a man given to anger, nor go with a wrathful man, lest you learn his ways and entangle yourself in a snare.

Proverbs 13:20 Whoever walks with the wise becomes wise, but the companion of fools will suffer harm.
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Now the 5 people that I hang around are sober, working a program, have great jobs, have wonderful supportive friends and family, have a relationship with God, and helping others with what they are passionate about. Not to say life is easy for these people but they sure are not filled with the chaos and harm to ones self and others. 

So who am I becoming…sober from codependency, working a program, have great job, have wonderful supportive friends and family, have a relationship with God, and am helping others by writing this blog and sharing my story. Not to say life is easy now but my life sure is not filled with the chaos and harm to ones self and others life it once was. 

Lots can happen when you change who you hang with. 

My journey to serenity continues…

The graphic was made with the help of google images and an app called Font Candy to add the text.

My Truth, Sober Living, What Does The Bible Say???

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, β€œMy 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.