Tag Archives: let go and let God

Dear Hurting Soul…

Dear Hurting Soul –

This letter is for you. You who love an addict (no matter what they are addicted to) and your life is out of control and you are wondering how this became your life. 

I see you. 
I know your pain. 
And I was you. 

Please know that you are not alone. 
Please know that you are not crazy. 
And please know life doesn’t have to be like this. 

You may be lying or hiding things from the addict or from your friends. You may feel overly responsible for the addicts actions or lack there of. You may be doing more than your share. You may be tired from this dance of fixing and taking care of the addict. You may be checking their phone to see what is going on. You may even be pissed off about broken promises. You may be hurting that you are not being heard. Or you may even be hurting that your addict is choosing their vise over you. You may feel all or some of these things. 

Can they change? Maybe. But right now, it’s not about them, it’s about you. I know, I get it, that feels really strange to have this about you. After all, you are not the addict. 

Hmmm or are you? The chaos that happens when the dance starts. The drama of it all. Feeling needed. 
When I went to my first meeting, I was shocked that we were supposed to talk about ourselves and not the addict. ‘I just want to fix him’, I remember thinking. What am I supposed to do to to help him? 

It’s not about them. It’s about you. 

You need support and your friends can’t help you with this. And to find a group to help you navigate this. And you need to find the right group for you! 

I went to one group for several weeks. I didn’t really click with them. That group, at that time of day happened to have a lot of parents of addicts. I couldn’t exactly relate to them and I didn’t feel like they were relating to me. But someone told me to go for 6 weeks and I would get to meet more people and get an idea of what that group was about. 

I’d recommend that if your schedule allows try different times for different groups. Don’t let one meeting make a decision for you. Meetings are made up with people and different nights or times can have completely different dynamics. 

I think I went for 5 or 6 weeks and felt it was not the right group for me. And I found the current group I’m with. And I love this group. 

If you are like me, you likely have looked up online where meeting are and the times. I did several times before I decided to go. 

Crossing those doors for the first time is scary. You don’t know anyone. You don’t know what to expect. You don’t know if you will be judged. 

You can do this because you are worth it. It’s time to stop the madness and choose you! Yep, now is the time.  Right here. Right now. Choose you! Choose peace. Choose to do something different and to stop the crazy dance. 

I know you are hurting and scared. I know you are because I was. 

But I promise, once you find the right group, you will find your people. And they will love on you and take your hand and say let’s do this together. 

You will find hope.
You will find people that understand 
And you will find an amazing healing journey to healing that soul of yours. 

Choose you! You are sooooooo worth it. 

Your journey starts now. 

My journey to serenity continues….

PS if you have gone to a few meetings and not sure what to do next, I’d recommend a post from last year that you may enjoy Just Start Rowing

Meeting you where you are….

One thing I love is that God meets us where we are. No need to perform before we start over. No check lists to check off. Doesn’t matter that it’s the 1st time or the 100th time we messed up, we have as many start overs that we need. And the one that matters is the last one. 

What does the Bible say about starting over…

2 Corinthians 5:17 Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.

See not only do I get to start over but I am also forgiven for the past mistakes. The old had passed and the new has come! 

What does the Bible say about the future…

Jeremiah 29:11 For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.

My future is bright because of Gods grace and love. 

As I continue to heal and grow in recovery (it’s 18 months by the way) I love the direction my life is moving. I love the friendships that I have with others in recovery. 

I was thinking about how much this blog means to me and how I love to share about my recovery. And was also thinking about how I’ve been able to use my artwork in my posts. Art work that I made a year before my journey to recovery started. God knew that I would be in this place and be able to use both of these creative outlets. 

What’s next for me in my recovery? 

I’m finishing up a step study, we have a couple of weeks left. We are planning on staying together as a group and do another study together. I was also asked to co-lead the next women’s step study. I am now part of the leadership team for CR and I hope to start to do more for our group, like be able to teach now and then. I am working on a book about my experience in recovery! It’s an extension from my blog. I am in the process of writing it now. I started a local group of bloggers to support each other. We meet twice a month. It’s a fun group and we all blog different topics. 

God met me where I was and sent the right people to walk me out of the mess and chaos that was my life and now the more I trust His plan for me, the more amazing things are revealed to me. Because I’m ready now. I’m ready to share more with others about what God has done in my life! 

Stay on this journey with me….the best is yet to be. 

My journey to serenity continues…

Two sides of HOPE

Side one…..In the past I had…..

Hoped that he would change
Hoped that he would notice my pain
Hoped that he would keep his promises 
Hoped that he would stop drinking
Hoped he would choose me
Hoped that I would be heard this time 
Hoped that the family would be come first
Hoped that this time would be the time
Hoped that this time would be different
Hoped others didn’t notice
Hoped someone kinda would have noticed
Hoped I can fix it
Hoped I was doing the right thing…..knowing it was the wrong thing


                              Faith    HOPE      Love   Continue 

Side two……Now HOPE is different for me. 

I don’t hope in other people. Or even in myself. Don’t get me wrong, HOPE is all about positive feelings of expectation, trust and desire for a certain thing to happen. 

But today my HOPE is in God and trusting His plans for my life. From the many gifts He has given me not only to be my best self but to also live out the 12 steps and glorify Him in all of my affairs. 

My journey to serenity continues…

I designed this tattoo on my arm. Faith Hope Love and I choose to continue. 

Trust God 

My sister in law passed away on June 1st, at her celebration of life the Celebrant shared this poem with us. 

Jenny’s poem. 

Trust God’s wisdom to guide
Trust his goodness to provide
Trust his saving love and power
Trust him every day and hour
Trust him as the only light
Trust him in the darkest night
Trust in sickness
Trust in health
Trust in poverty and in wealth
Trust him living – dying too
Trust him all the journey through


Struggling with codependency, letting go and trusting God is hard. And shows up in places that I sometimes don’t expect. 

With the loss of a dear friend and father figure. I need to let go and trust God. 

What does the Bible say about Trusting God… Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding (Proverbs 3:5)

Finding recovery in unexpected places. 

My journey to serenity continues…..

That’s not mine….return to sender

I have not written about it in a while but my kids are not talking to their dad. 

It’s a sad situation all around but one I cannot control. It’s sad because everyone is hurting and when people hurt, I feel it deeply too. My heart aches that my boys are hurting and my heart aches that my ex-husband is hurting too. 

My boys see a counselor and continue to work out their feelings and how they want to handle this with their dad. Sorting out their feelings, understanding boundaries and working on life as teenagers and all that brings with it. 

My ex and I have had a decent co-parenting relationship since we divorced up until the boys each decided that they didn’t want to talk or see him anymore. 

On their own, they wrote him a letter. 

I understanding their hurts because I had the same ones. Over time I have gotten to the place that he is who he is. And I stopped having expectations that he is who I needed him to be and just accepted him for the person he is. 

Since being in my program, I have forgiven him for many things and now understand my part too.  

I can not fix the relationship between them. It’s not mine to fix. My ex knows how to push my old Codependent buttons but it doesn’t work anymore. And that frustrates him. 

He called me the other day and there was blaming and finger pointing in my direction. He is not yet in that place to see and own his part.  So he projected all of his anger about the situation at me. 

ITS NOT MINE, RETURN TO SENDER

Part of the serenity prayer comes to mind……and the wisdom to know the difference. I really do not want them to hurt, but this is not in my control. And is not for me to change. 

I encourage the boys to see the humanness of making mistakes. I encourage the boys to give a voice to how they feel and to create boundaries. And we talk about understanding and forgiveness. 

I pray for God will intervene in His timing to make this situation better for everyone. Only in the way He can. I could say more specific requests but it’s not what I want, it’s what each of them needs. Only God knows that and can begin to heal these relationships. So I am lifting this situation up to Him. 

My journey to serenity continues…

my life is telling a story…

My life is telling a story. The story is based on every decision I’ve made. Good decisions and bad ones too. 

My story tells the story about a girl who learned to cope with life by being codependent. This served her well for a while until it didn’t. As she lost herself trying to fix someone else and trying to fix the person before him and the one before him too. 

She was about to give up when she found her life to be wreck. Like a 100 car train wreck. Parts smashed and broken beyond repair. Off the track as far as the eye can see in all directions. Everything is just a mess. 

But then she made a different decision. She found a Christian based recovery group and she was reminded that God is in control and she didn’t have to try to control everything around her. 


Because of wanting and being willing to understand and let go, she no longer had to feel responsible for so many things that were out of her control in the first place. And she started to heal the parts of her heart that had hurt for so long that those parts were numb to the pain. 

She made new decisions everyday. Everyday committing to let God guide her footsteps. 

Today her life is telling a different story. This girl is seeking and listening and finding her way to the living the life my soul intended. 

 I have no idea why but this quote from Henry David Thoreau came to mind tonight. But it did so have to go with it. ‘Most men lead lives of quiet desperation and go to the grave with the song still in them”? 

There is no more quiet desperation for me and I am singing loud and proud of this amazing story of grace and love that God is giving to me. 

Me…..this girl…..derailed and broken beyond repair…..or so I thought. Praise God for his love and kindness that is waiting for all of us. 

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

This girls journey to serenity continues. 
I took the picture used in this post while writing at my favorite local coffee shop. 

12 Things I’ve Learned 12 Stepping 

I didn’t know anything about 12 step programs before 2015. Maybe a few jokes here and there. Maybe how it was depicted on a sitcom. 

I was a Seinfeld fan and there was an episode about Step 9. And how George was looking for an apology from someone who was in AA. So my concept of 12 step programs was from a sarcastic place and that all anyone talked about who was in a program was the program. 

Now look at me 16 months of working a 12 step program. And yeah I do talk about the program a lot. 

The thing is, my life has changed and I am continuing to grow closer to my Higher Power, HP or who I believe is Jesus Christ. I am continuing to understand and let go. I am continuing to be that much closer to my authentic self and who God wants me to be. 

So in no particular order, 12 things I have learned from my 12 step program.

1. Working a program is just that, work. You can’t just show up to meetings and do nothing else and things get better. So I….Got a sponsor. I have surround myself with  a sober community. I read recovery materials. Celebrate Recovery has a step study which are workbooks that ask some hard questions on each step that you answer and share with a small group, so I joined that group. I read the Bible. Putting all these things into action is working a program. Doing all of those things, you can’t help but change. 

2. What you struggle with does not define you. The 12 step program I attend is for anyone with  hurts, hang ups or habits that separates us from God and that you want to change. I love that when we introduce ourselves we say ‘I struggle with’ not I am. Mistakes of my past doesn’t mean that is who I am. 

3. Forgiveness is not for the other person but for yourself. I will never contact my ex boyfriend again but I have forgiven him. The freedom of owning my part and understanding his and forgiving him is life changing. I no longer carry the guilt and shame of my actions. 

4. Forgiving myself has been the hardest thing.  My actions hurt other people, I knew it and then I isolated, shut down and hind because of my shame and guilt. Forgiving myself took me the longest to do but then a friend in program reminded me that God had already forgiven me and I should too. 

5. Worry does not change ourcome. If fact worry is a form of not trusting God. God is in control and already knows what is going to happen and knows the mistakes I will make in the future. He has a plan in place to help me through these times. So worry only takes energy from the now and prevents you from being present. 

6. Understanding codependency. I learned to cope with life by being codependent. When I thought I was helping, it actually caused damage. I made excuses, lied to cover up for and took care of things that were not my responsibility. And it turned out that I prevented the other person from growing from the experience of managing his own problems. 

7. I’ve learned about setting boundaries. Boundaries not only keeps me in a safe space, it also allows me to communicate in a healthy way what I need and what I am willing to do. I don’t always have to tell others my boundaries, me knowing in some cases is enough. This has not only helped me with my relationships but also with work. 
8. It’s hard to complain when you are grateful. Gratitude reminds me of the things in your life. Often addictive behaviors starts from lacking something and it’s a way to escape. It’s so hard to bitch about life when you start to become aware of all the little things to be grateful for everyday. I am grateful for all the little things, the good things and the trials too. 

9. Feelings are hard and that’s ok. No one likes to feel unappreciated or hurt or singled out or not heard. Addictive behaviors are often to avoid those feelings. Feelings of not being enough. Feelings of being disappointed or disappointing someone else. But there are also feelings of love and acceptance and joy that by avoiding those negative feelings you also miss out on the good ones too. So sometimes you have to sit and feel those feelings that you don’t want to and then move on. 

10. You are exactly where God wants you to be. In number five, I said that God has a plan in place for my future mistakes but He also has a plan for the good times too. I am in the right place…..right now. Maybe there is a lesson that has yet to be learned. Maybe there is someone else that you will cross paths with for you but what if it was actually for them. Isn’t that a cool thought. Don’t worry about where you are right now, just be there and enjoy every second. And before you know it, you will be in another place with new challenges and new good times and then that is where you are supposed to be. 

11. Being in program taught me how to listen. Being in dysfunctional relationships, I often felt that I was not heard. During the share time, each person is given 5 minutes to share whatever they want. No one can interrupt them. No one can ask questions. No one tell you how to fix it. No one can tell you that you are wrong. It’s only 5 minutes but it’s the only 5 minutes that are like that in my week. I’ve learned to listen. And I don’t judge or think less of them because I know they don’t think less of me. It’s how this works. During the week I may check in with them or next time I see them, we’ll talk about how whatever went or ended up. 

12. Recovery doesn’t end, it’s a lifestyle. I hate to be the one to tell you, but working a program is not a one and done thing. You have to work and embrace the steps everyday, every single day. And when you do, you change, you become aware. You feel things that you don’t want to but you cope with it in a new way. You learn to recognize and own your part and you set better boundaries for next time. And you share your experience, strength and hope with others. And why do we do that? We share our story for His glory and to show others what God has done in our lives.
I want to add a 13th thing I’ve learned because people joke about the 13th step. The 13th step is that someone in program hits one newer member of the group. 

But this is my experience of other people in the group…..

13.  Sponsors, accountability partners and friendships born from recovery are amazing. People in the program are full of wisdom and grace. And this combination is incredible. They have worked the program. Your sponsor will push you in a loving way. You accountability partner will ask you questions that will make you think and maybe give you reason to pause. And the fellowship you share with other members of the group is like no other friendships you can ever have. I have learned how to give grace because others have given grace to me. 

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

My journey to serenity continues…