My Truth

From a place of love…

As someone who struggles with codependency, I heard an amazing yet sad reminder over the weekend.

I went to a Church service where a guest Pastor spoke about his addiction and recovery through Jesus Christ. Part of his bottom was when his Dad unexpectedly passed away. And the next time he relapsed, his Dad was not there to help pick him back up.

Later in the day, at the Q and A session, he shared that if his Dad was still alive, he likely wouldn’t be.

That was such a difficult reminder to hear but an important one.

That hard truth of when a codependent or enabler ends up causing harm when we were just coming from a place of what we thought was love. That place where we want to soften their fall but we just end up prolonging their bottom and pain.

I know for myself, I wanted to soften the fall of a now ex boyfriend. I would be screaming inside….where is your bottom. As I picked him up from jail or from someplace else he shouldn’t have been. He needed to feel his own consequences from behavior he was choosing. And my softer version while well meaning, was not helping him.

I kept giving him chances and covering for him as I thought, this would be the time that he would get sober and if I didn’t, I would miss it. I would miss being there with him, living a sober life together. if I just loved him enough, he would stop drinking. Or thinking, if he really loved me he would stop.

But that’s not how that story ended.

That story ended with me reaching my bottom before he did. I had to untangle myself from this crazy train of addict and enabler. Which included a protective order because I was afraid.

Then I found Jesus Christ through this little program called Celebrate Recovery.

That story ends with me not only learning that Jesus wanted to be in relationship with me the entire time and I just needed to turn towards Him. But also that God loves me so much that He sent his beloved son, Jesus here to live a perfect life and die for my not even done yet, sins. To pay the price for me. To take on all my burdens. All of my hurts, habits and hangups and replace those things with freedom, joy and love.

I also have learned to love myself and have learned how to have real meaningful relationships with others. To fellowship with like minded people who love Jesus and each other right where we are.

My journey continues….

My Truth

I Am From – Parts one and two

Part One

I am from pink plaid flowered wall paper and a canopy bed

from tigger and a little pink blanket with satin edges

From sucking my thumb, quiet and shy

I am from cedar trees and mint

Who’s fragrances permeate my soul

And place where when Church bells meant dinner was ready

I am the youngest and forever the baby

And I lonely

Lonely in a houseful of people

No one noticed

No one sees

I am a struggling student

Letters, sounds, I see them but I don’t understand how to link them

Years of tutors and summer school

Nothing makes sense

Nothing is helping

Nothing is helping Because they don’t know

They don’t know that I think it’s my fault

That I am afraid

I’m distracted and confused

I am from alcohol

From a place of forgotten conversations, but I was not the one who forgot

That place where I disappear

That no one notices

That what feels like no one cares

I am older now, I want to tell

But I can’t, I’m too afraid

Now too much time as passed

It doesn’t matter anymore

The damage is already done

My slate is forever changed

Part Two

I am from self reliance but

Hate to make decisions

It’s easier for me to allow others to decide for me

I am from broken promises

From saying one thing and doing another

I am from a place where my partner in life sees an obstacle as a stop sign

And I want to climb over it

Or dig under it

Or figure out a way around it

A place that if we can’t do those things

That we will take the hit together but

Right before the hit, I am alone

I am from a place where everything is funny if you have a few drinks, well funny to him anyway

From a place of forgotten conversations, but I was not the one who forgot

That putting others down makes him feel bigger

From a place that my fears or dreams were not heard, acknowledged or addressed

From a place that silence meant everything was ok

That at some point, I gave up

And he didn’t notice

So when I left, he had no idea why

Alone

Unlovable

A shell

The enemy knew I so desperately wanted to be heard.

To be from a place of love

To be from a place where I mattered, where I was enough

And he came along

He quickly gave me those things that I was thirsty for

I then was from a place of denial

That things that should have been stop signs, I justified

I overlooked

I lied to myself and everyone else

Others saw what I was blind to because that being from that place of love and acceptance meant more to me

That place was short lived and I was shattered

I am now from a place of covering him

From putting myself in harms way

I am from fear of someone finding out

From alcohol

From a place of forgotten conversations, but I was not the one who forgot

I am from a place of his lies

His disfunction

A place of waiting for him to hit bottom

I am from a place of letting everyone down

And wanting to end it all

I am from these places but I’m not in those places anymore

My journey continues…

Writing Part 3

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:

🔨 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.

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

🔩 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!

🔨 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.

🔧 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.

🔩 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.

🔨 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.

🔧 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.

🔩 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

🔨 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.

🔧 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 🔨 🔧 🔩 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

that I matter to Him

If you have followed my blog for a while you would know that I attend Celebrate Recovery (CR) and have for four years now.

Along with the 12 steps and the biblical comparisons, CR also has 8 principles. These principles are based on the beatitudes. While all the steps and the principles are amazing on their own and how they work together, principle 2 sticks with me.

Earnestly believe that God exists, that I matter to Him and that He has the power to help me recover. (Step 2)
“Happy are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted.” Matthew 5:4

The first part is easy for me. Earnestly believe that God exists. I know that God exists and that He is working in my life every day. I trust His plan for my life and know that all things work together for my greater good.

The next part is my favorite part of this principle, that I matter to Him. There have been many times in my life that I didn’t feel like I mattered. That I was not heard. That I wasn’t enough. That my opinion didn’t matter.

That I matter to God….is a little overwhelming to even think. That God sent His son to die for my sins. That God works all things for my greater good. That God wants a relationship with me. That God has prepared a place for me. That I matter to Him. God has never turned away from me, I was the one who turned away. He was right there all along. Waiting for me to turn back. He met me where I was because He was there waiting for me because I matter to Him.

The last part of this principle is and that He has the power to help me recover. In principles 1, 2 and 3 and steps 1, 2 and 3, is all about I can’t, He can and I need to let Him.

I am powerless. I have control over very little. Really I only have control over my own actions and reactions. There have been times that I didn’t make good decisions. Not based on my greater good.

God has the power to help me recover and I need to let Him.

That I matter to Him. He hears me. He knows I am enough. My opinion matters to Him.

My journey to serenity continues…

My Truth

Grateful

I recently did a questionnaire that puts in order 24 character strengths. I went into the questionnaire not knowing the names of the strengths.

I was not surprised by my top 5. They are: gratitude, appreciation of beauty and excellence, kindness and generosity, capacity to love and be loved and spiritually, sense of purpose and faith.

We often think and talk about our character defects and not character strengths. So doing this work gives me some great incite into who I am and how I am showing up in the world. The other cool thing is the other strengths can be worked on and improved and moved up the list.

Something I can only contribute to recovery, is having an attitude of gratitude. There have been times in my life that I have felt unworthy. Ungrateful. And not seeing the gifts there are from trials, hard days and even conflict. Over the last couple of years, I have developed a very strong sense of gratitude. So I was not surprised that this is my top strength.

According to The Positivity Project gratitude’s parent virtue is transcendence and this strength allow people to rise above their troubles and find meaning in the larger universe. Gratitude is sometimes resisted due to not wanting to experience a sense of indebtedness. However, gratitude is less about feeling indebted and more about being aware of the consideration, kindness and generosity of others.

I am approaching my 4 year of working a recovery program, Celebrate Recovery (CR) I’m giving my testimony at two different CR’s in the next few weeks. Tonight I am reflective of who I was walking in the doors of CR for the first time and who I am today AND JUST HOW FAR I HAVE COME.

And I find myself just so grateful.

Grateful for where I was. Grateful for those who came along side me. I am grateful for those who stuck with me and for those who walked away. I am grateful for the work I’ve done to find myself. I am grateful for friendships that are not like any other I have ever had. I am grateful for making my recovery a priority for the last 4 years.

I am grateful that I can admit that I am powerless. I do not have it all together. I do not have to try and control all of it. I am not responsible for all of it. I am not that powerful and it’s not my job.

I am grateful that my higher power loves me. That I matter to Him and that He wants to have a relationship with me. That He works all things together for my greater good.

I am grateful that I make the decision everyday to turn my life and my will over to the care of God.

I am grateful for fearless inventories. And identify my part and see character defects because I will grow from this information.

I am grateful for being able to admit to God, to myself and to someone I trust, my wrong doings.

I am grateful that I am a work in progress and am ready to have God remove my defects of character.

I am grateful that I can humbly ask Him to remove my shortcomings.

I am grateful for identifying those that I have harmed and become willing to make amends with them.

I am grateful for making direct amends when ever possible except when to do so would injure them or others.

I am grateful for continuing to take personal inventory and promptly admit when I am wrong.

I am grateful for prayer and meditation. Praying for knowledge of His will for my life and the power to carry that out.

And I am grateful for getting to carry this message to others and practicing these principles in all of my affairs.

I am grateful for the 12 steps and learning how to apply them to me and my pain and hurts.

I am perfectly imperfect and grateful.

My journey to serenity continues…

My Truth

If Nothing Changes, Nothing Changes

If nothing changes, nothing changes. BUT if something changes and you stick with it….EVERYTHING changes!

I know first hand how that works. In many parts of my life.

If I continued to relate to someone with codependency, that relationship will stay dysfunctional.

If I continued to not have boundaries with someone, I will continue to be run over and feel unheard.

If I continued to be in denial about my health, I would continue to on the path to put myself of a health risk.

I recently read ….Change happens when the pain of staying the same is greater than the pain of change. By Tony Robbins. It’s so true.

Change can be scary. What’s going to happen to me when I get healthy….less dependent….more assertive….speak the truth in love…..forgive them…..take off my mask….forgive myself…..will people like me….will I even like me?

Well let me say when I stepped out of denial with my health because my pain of staying the same was greater than my pain of change. And I made real changes. And stuck to them for the last 5 months, EVERYTHING had changed. I have now lost 47 pounds. My blood sugar and pressure are back in normal ranges. I have more energy. I am no longer in physical pain daily. I am happier. I am more confident.

As far as if others will like me…..I don’t care. It no longer matters to me if others like me or not. I don’t need to know. It’s actually none of my business. The right people will not only like me, they will love me.

And to answer the do I like me question….I love who I am becoming. I finally feel like I am becoming who I was always meant to be. I love serving others in a ministry that walks along side others who are in pain from life. And they have reached that tipping point of staying the same is more painful than pain of change.

Together we work the 12 steps. They are designed to take actions to achieve the goals of recovery – reconciliation with God, with yourself, with others and then serving and giving back….that’s how it works.

And then together we learn the Celebrate Recovery principals to develop new attitudes – attitudes of humility, vulnerability, honesty and gratitude….that’s why it works.

I love being perfectly imperfect. I make mistakes. And then I can correct them. It’s not a success only Journey. And when I fail, I can get back up. Failing just means I’m trying and not standing still.

If nothing changes, nothing changes but if something changes and you stick with it, everything changes!

My journey to serenity continues…

Ps parts of this post is inspired by a Celebrate Recovery lesson. You will find the most amazing people there. To find a meeting near you, go the Celebrate Recovery website.

My Truth

Stability…

At work today I was listening to YouTube (as usual) and a TD Jakes clip played…

You didn’t get to pick what shaped your world. But you do get to pick what stabilizes it’

This to me is so timely and powerful. I have been looking for stability in my life for a long time. I’ve felt like I was white knuckling life got the last 20 plus years. All day. Everyday. Trying to control everything.

And what brought me the stability that I’ve been looking for? A little 12 Step Christ centered program called Celebrate Recovery.

I’ve found a new stride. My new normal. It’s a pretty happy place. Not without challenges. Not without struggles. Not without upset. That’s just called life. And because of that I’ve learned 12 stepping, living the 12 steps daily and by God’s Grace, I can cope in a new way.

Finding stability when life is always changing. Finding stability when the unexpected happens. Finding stability in an uncertain world.

No longer do I need to live in secret, silence or shame. No longer do I worry about what someone may think of my situation or of me. As a mother, sister or friend.

This stability that I thought was so far out of reach, wasn’t. And as I continue to let go of control and trust God and His plan for

my life, the more stable I have become.

And the more stable I become, the more I need to be stable.

Stay on this ride with me, the best is yet to be.

My journey continues…

Ps I painted the pic used in this post.

My Truth

One Moment At A Time…

Learning how to live one moment at a time Because sometimes one day at a time is too much.

The afternoon of April 6th while I was out with a group of friends, I got a phone call from my brother. I knew just from how he said hello, that something was wrong. He told me our other brother had a heart attack. He was in the hospital 2 hours away and to hang tight for more information.

In that moment, the world kept spinning around me but I was standing still. My mind was racing with who needed to be where and when, what was on my desk at work, how long it would take to drive there, how much money did I have if I needed a hotel, who’s with him, who needed to be where and when, how long will it take to get there, who’s with him, over and over and over.

The very familiar feeling of being completely out of control and numb. Feeling everything but it’s easier to feel nothing. Numb it out because this hurts far too much to think that my brother was so sick.

But I’ve worked so hard on not numbing out feelings. That new skills bubbled up….like naming feelings is better. Feeling them is hard but better. I was afraid and worried. And while I had control over nothing. So I had to do the only thing that I could do….trust God.

I started immediately understanding what living one moment at a time felt like and how I fragile life is.

I was asked to hang tight and wait for more information. I stayed with my friends rather than going home and crying by myself. I was there physically but my heart and head were not.

Sunday, my cousin drove us down to the hospital. Two of my brothers were in the visitors room and one had just left. As soon as I saw them, I started crying. It all felt like too much but I took a deep breath and we went in to see him.

Central lines, IV’s, tubes, wires, bags of meds hung and machines making rhythmic noises. All so overwhelming. So much to overcome.

In control of nothing.

Accepting one moment at a time.

Thy will be done.

I spent the next two days with him. Lots of ups and downs. We had a group text going to share updates. I felt like every time I sent an update, things changed.

Every time the machines rhythms changed, I looked to see. I’d rub my hand across his forehead and tell him how well they were taking care of him. I’d say his name and he would open his eyes.

Living one moment at a time.

Accepting one moment at a time.

Being part of every moment at a time

In control of nothing.

Just being there. Doing life together.

I went back home and my brothers rotated in and out over the next few days. There was very little time that he was alone.

Thursday was hard. Feeling like he was back sliding. Should I go back down. Should I wait. I decided to wait till morning and then decide.

Very early Friday morning April 12th, my sweet brother passed away. Grateful my brother was with him. No regrets I was not. The time we spent Sunday – Tuesday was special.

I learned to live one moment at a time.

I learned that even when not in control, I could still be there.

I learned just how fragile life is.

I learned that doing life together sometimes means doing death together too. And I am forever grateful the time we had together in his final days.

I love you kiddo. Until we meet again.

Photo Credit: my brother who passed. His caption for this photo on Facebook was ‘before my bubble burst’

More soon about him and the legacy he left his kid sister.

My Truth

Worry Does Not Change Outcome…

I took this picture outside my office window after a late afternoon storm. I love how the light changes from one area to another. Some darker than others and some with such bright light as sun peeks out from behind the clouds.

Rainbows represent God’s promise. His promise to be with us when we are afraid during a storm and that storms end.

I seem to have been overcome by worry here lately. Which reminded me that I struggle with codependency and that codependency is about control.

Trying to:

  • Control a situation.
  • Control what others know and think about a situation.
  • Control the outcome of a situation.
  • Control my pain.
  • Control others pain.
  • Control being out of control.
  • Control of owning all of situation, when it’s not all mine.
  • Control wanting to make amends when I’m I don’t even know what I’m sorry for doing or not doing.

It wasn’t until yesterday when a friend was facing a health crisis, that I said things to her that I needed to hear for myself.

I sent to her, remember:

  • God is in control.
  • God goes before and with you.
  • God knows the outcome.
  • Breathe.
  • You are so loved.
  • Worry does not change outcome.

Isaiah 41:10 Don’t be afraid, for I am with you! Don’t be frightened, for I am your God. I strengthen you – yes, I help you – yes I uphold you with my saving right hand.

So here I am at 2 am, ready to lift this situation I have found myself in with someone I love very much. God is in control, God is making a way, Thy will not my will, I just need to breathe and remember that I am loved even with this current struggle. And worry does not change outcome…..if I’m worried about or not, what’s going to happen is going to happen without my intervention.

I’ll have to look up the verse but someplace in the Bible it says….in my weakness, He is strong.

After all, am I really that powerful…..no no I’m not but He is.

My journey continues…

My Truth

When someone shows you who they are, believe them!

A while back I worked for a bank and worked in the business loan department. I remember people asking why we pull personal credit reports for a business loan. Well the answer is simple, how someone handles their personal finances is also how they handle their business finances. People don’t change their core habits based on business or personal. And if they do, it’s short lived.

I share that because I was watching a You Tube video last night and heard someone say ‘when someone shows you who they are, believe them’. It’s kinda like the credit report thing.

Gosh I wish I applied this with a few people in my past.

Have you ever made excuses for someone’s bad behavior? I sure have. Have you had someone do something many times and you made excuses over and over. Yep, done that too.

If I had paused with the second or even third time or how about the 10th time and I made a different decision rather than making an excuse, I wonder how things would have been different. But….

Please don’t get me wrong, people can change. I’ve seen it first hand. People at their bottom. Life was a hot mess. And they are now a completely different person because they have done the work that comes with recovery.

But stay with me.

That is who they were at that time. And that is who I was at that time too.

He continued to drink, when he told me he wouldn’t. And I continued to make excuses, in hopes that this was the time. And if I walked away too soon, I would 1. Cause him to drink because I didn’t believe in him enough and 2. I would miss his recovery back to who he used to be.

Really now, did I have that type of control? Sounds ridiculous just saying it out loud. Heck no, I didn’t have any control. But my codependent thinking made me think I did.

So I stayed a little too long because I thought that was loving hm. As things spun more out of control And my heart got hurt. So did my wallet. And my other relationships.

But had I not been there, I wouldn’t be here.

Last week, I heard from an old friend. Someone I thought I could have been in a relationship with one day. And with just a few test messages, he showed me who he is. And you know what I did? I believed him. And I asked him not to contact me again. (Now I wish I could say that I was that nice or graceful about it but I’m not sure I was.)

The point is, that I did it. I didn’t make an excuse. He showed me who he is……and I believed him. And I walked away.

Recovery in action! Love small victories!

Feeling grateful tonight for all I have learned in the past few years and most of all, Grateful to God for leading me to Celebrate Recovery so that I can develop a relationship with Him and gain the understanding of why my life was in a ditch and help me get out of it.

My journey to serenity continues….

My Truth

Changing how I pray and watching for answers from unexpected places…

Ever felt like prayers are not answered? Ever wondered if prayers are even heard? Ever wonder why it’s taking so long for prayers to be answered?

My experience has been that prayers are answered in God’s PERFECT timing. Never early. Never Late. But I have also learned recently that maybe just maybe I’m asking for the wrong thing and I’m approaching this prayer thing all wrong.

It occurred to me that maybe by me praying for something specific, I am trying to control the outcome of something. That would then mean that I’m not really trusting God and his plan for me. Why am I feeding Him the answers. He knows. He know every hair on my head, every misstep I’m going to make, why am I telling Him how I want something to be resolved.

Sooooo, I’ve changed how I pray. There’s a lot more prayers like…..God you know the situation and what is best for everyone involved, thy will be done. Or even that Carrie Underwood song Jesus take the wheel comes to mind.

This has taken me out of it. And when I started to do this, I have felt lighter, not so heavy hearted. And amazingly, things have started to happen. Things that were bothering me, are still happening but not bothering me at all anymore.

I’m reminded of this story…..not sure where it’s from but some wise story teller shared this….

A fellow was stuck on his rooftop in a flood. He was praying to God for help. Soon a man in a rowboat came by and the fellow shouted to the man on the roof, “Jump in, I can save you.”

The stranded fellow shouted back, “No, it’s OK, I’m praying to God and he is going to save me.”

So the rowboat went on.

Then a motorboat came by. “The fellow in the motorboat shouted, “Jump in, I can save you.”

To this the stranded man said, “No thanks, I’m praying to God and he is going to save me. I have faith.” So the motorboat went on.

Then a helicopter came by and the pilot shouted down, “Grab this rope and I will lift you to safety.” To this the stranded man again replied, “No thanks, I’m praying to God and he is going to save me. I have faith.”

So the helicopter reluctantly flew away.

Soon the water rose above the rooftop and the man drowned. He went to Heaven. He finally got his chance to discuss this whole situation with God, at which point he exclaimed, “I had faith in you but you didn’t save me, you let me drown. I don’t understand why!”

To this God replied, “I sent you a rowboat and a motorboat and a helicopter, what more did you expect?”

This story illustrates that sometime the answer is not what we expect. It’s not a big party. It’s doesn’t have a sign to say this is it. That sometimes it’s a rowboat, when we thought a yacht was coming. Or it’s a motorboat when we expected a cruise ship. Or it’s a helicopter when we wanted a jet plane. Or sometimes it is the rowboat when we thought no one cared. Or sometimes it is the motorboat when we thought no one noticed and sometimes it is the helicopter when we though we were not deserving.

Answers come in unexpected places. A text from a friend. A work client saying something nice. The point of view from a kid, if you just listen.

In the serenity prayer it says….accepting hardships as a pathway to peace. And C S Lewis said ‘hardships often prepare ordinary people for an extraordinary destiny’

Will there be hardships? I guarantee there will be. And will I end up where I think I will? Probably not. But where you will end up is better then you ever imagined.

My journey to serenity continues….

My Truth

My 2 year protective order is over, now what???

My 2 year protective order is over, now what???

In the beginning, it was too raw, too new, too emotional and just too much. I was still afraid of him and what he was capable of doing. He had put bruises on my arm and gave me a black eye. He trespassed and scared my son. But it wasn’t until he scared my son, that I did something about it. Funny how that works that we are willing to put up with so much for ourselves but when someone else is hurt, gloves off and it’s game on. 

In the beginning, this piece of paper was just that, a piece of paper and it meant nothing to him but it meant everything to me. This piece of paper gave me power. 

After asking him, texting him, telling him, yelling at him and then screaming at him to just leave me alone…..that piece of paper gave me power to say nothing but to call and ask for help because he was not listening to me and it was escalating. He pounded of my front door at 5 am and all I could do was cry on the other side of the door and pray he wouldn’t wake up my kids. As he stumbled way, I called the police. That was the day before the order was given to him. 

He violated the order the day it was given to him. And I called the police. And they took him to jail. And then he called me from jail. 23 times he called me from being taken to jail for violating my protective order and he called me 23 times in 30 minutes. So I took that piece of paper to the magistrates office and got another violation of my protective order documented and my number blocked from jail. 

That piece of paper was my voice and stood for me when I was not able to stand on my own. 

The thing that was hard for me to understand and let go is that he doesn’t remember any of it. He had been drinking to the point of black out drunk for months. And he remembers none of it. 

He stared me down in court. To the point that the judge told him to stop and that she was not going to allow him to try and intimidate me. I mouthed ‘thank you’ to the judge. But I didn’t give him anything. I didn’t look at him, I didn’t look in his direction. I didn’t react to the things he said in court. 

When he got out of jail, he would stand by my mail box or down the street. These were not violations because he didn’t talk to me. For weeks he did that. Watching me come and go. I was paranoid that I would leave the door unlocked and he would be inside when I got home.


My 2 year protective order is over, now what??? 

I’ve had 2 years to process this chapter in my life. And 20 months (today) of working a recovery program to help me process, understand, own my part, identify his, forgive and heal from this chapter in my life. 

So now what???

So I keep living life. I keep working my program. I surround this time of my life with all the tools that I’ve learned. I continue to create boundaries to keep me safe. I continue to make a list of things that I can do when I feel anxious or upset. And then in a safe time look those feelings and identify where I have work to do. Because these things are like an onion and once you figure out one layer, there is another one. 

I meanioned that I had a hard time with the fact that he remembers none of it. I also have a hard time with the fact that he knows where I am. He knows my address. He knows where I work. He knows how to contact me if he wanted to. And I don’t know where he is. 

And then I remember that here is where I just need to trust God. I have no control about that he is doing or if he chooses to contact me. I have no control if he decides to show up at my house or my work. I have no control over what he has told others about that happened and what they think of me. 

But I know like I know like I know that….

  • God is not surprised at anything that happened, then, now or in the future. 
  • God knew I would now be in this healthier place because I have trusted Him through my recovery journey. 
  • God is doing a work in my life and all things work together for my greater good. 
  • I have learned to listen to God. To trust that voice inside me. That has proven to be so much smarter that I am. 
  • And God is working in his life too. And I have witnesses others amazing transformation from alcoholism to truely amazing faith filled men.
  • That I don’t need all the answers. God provides exactly what I need, in His perfect timing. 

My journey to serenity continues…

My Truth

ever felt like you are in a personal prison???

Ever felt like you are in a personal prison? I have. Ever heard that expression that you are a slave to your addiction? 

Did you know it’s even in the Bible? 2 Peter 2:19

They promise freedom, but they themselves are slaves of sin and corruption. For you are a slave to whatever controls you.

The addict is all consumed and control by the next fix. It’s all about the next hit and who that impacts and what is going on around them is completely irrelevant. 

And the codependent is all consumed with the addict and trying to control what is going on. We each were in our own personal prison. 

Being with a binge drinking alcoholic, I have witnessed this craziness of control that alcohol had over people in my life. That it makes no sense looking in that he would go buy the $3 small bottle of whatever and then have to go get more later. Why not buy a bigger bottle? Because he couldn’t. He thought that this time he would the last one and only need this much. It turned out, it was not enough and he was right back at the store getting more.  

And then my crazy behavior trying to make it easier for him. Looking in that it makes no sense that I would pay to turn the lights back on or buying bottled water when the water was cut off. 

This prison we were both in. 

Once we hit our true bottom, and we are ready. And here’s the thing that no one tells you or you are just unable to see until you are in your bottom and you know your life is out of control and you know you are a mess and can’t do this alone……

The prison you were in. 

The door you have been staring at for so long. 

Feeling trapped. 

Feeling like you have no choice. 

Feeling like this is how my life is going to be and as good as it gets.  

The door has been unlocked the entire time and you are free to leave! 


My journey to serenity continues