My Truth

My New Normal

I think I’ve stumbled on my new normal. Lots going on and some changes too but I’m finding that I’m using tools I’ve learned and been applying to my life.

My day starts and ends in prayer. Been doing that faithfully since the start of the year. Every morning I call a friend and we pray together. I’ve never done that before. It’s pretty cool. It’s a wonderful way to start the day.

I’ve ended the day in prayer off and on for a while but now doing this constantly. Gratitude for the day and whatever specifically happened that day and doing a daily inventory occupy that time.

My new normal is full of tools that I’ve been developing for the last 4 years. They are starting to be a natural response and easier to tell someone what I need or to set a boundary.

I have an awesome support system in place. I turn to them when I need to process or support. Just to check in or just to say hello.

I am choosing to let go of a few things in my life that keep me busy and while it fills my tank there are parts that I don’t enjoy and it drains me. I did a lesson at CR a week or so ago on powerlessness. In the lesson, it says when our pain is greater than our fear, that we when we make a change. And while there is not pain in this situation, it takes my energy. So as I figured out that the drain on my life was at a faster rate then what it filled. It was time to make a change.

This is already making room for me to say yes to other things that fill me up. And be around more people with similar interests and that want to do stuff together.

I’m just going to enjoy this new normal and see what God has planned for me in this next chapter.

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

My journey to serenity continues…

My Truth

COURAGE to change the things I CAN

I love the Serenity Prayer. So much wisdom and simple truth. I’ve written about this powerful prayer before but I wanted to focus on one part…courage to change the things I can.

Change takes courage. We sometimes get stuck in the familiar. While something is not ideal, it’s comfortable in some ways. Sometimes it’s the ‘devil that we know’. We don’t change because of fear. Fear of the unknown. Fear of the what if’s. Fear of uncertainty. Fear to fail. Fear to succeed. Fear of judgement. Fear of disappointing others. The list goes on and on.

Fear is healthy. Its purpose is to give you pause. It’s a gut check. Is this safe to move forward? But when fear keeps you stuck, it becomes unhealthy.

Change takes courage.

There has been many times in my life I have been afraid to make to change. Stuck in places of my life that I was not happy about. But I have made changes and it’s better than I can imagine. And there’s even been a some times that the change wasn’t great and became a stepping stone to the next change. I guess it’s not always a one step process. I guess most things actually aren’t a one step process. After all life is not a success only Journey.

So there’s something not working in my life that I can change and now I have a choice to make. I need to make a change.

Courage to change the things I can.

Decisions on making a change does not have to be done alone.

  • Pray, ask for wisdom, courage and God’s will
  • Seek wise counsel
  • Talk to a professional
  • Ask for support from healthy and trusted friends and family

I am not alone even when there are times I feel like I am. I’m working on those 4 bullet points. Trying to find the courage to change the things I can.

My journey continues…

My Truth

Doing A Daily Inventory…

I’m working on giving a Celebrate Recovery lesson next week on Step 10.
I really enjoy preparing for lessons. I add myself to it with my life examples. I read things outside the prepared lesson for inspiration or deeper understanding or connection to the lesson. I get a lot out of

doing this for my own recovery process.

I had a trainer who always said at the start of a class, ‘You get what you give’. That always stuck with me. So the more I give to this process, the more I get. And then the more I can give away to others.

I really like the Step 10 Prayer from AA Big Book. page 84-85

God remove the Selfishness, dishonesty, resentment and fear that has cropped up in my life right now. Help me to discuss this with someone immediately and make amends quickly if I have harmed anyone. Help me to cease fight anything and anyone. Show me where I may be helpful to someone else. Help me react sanely; not cocky or afraid. How can I best serve You – Your will, not mine

Amen

Truth is, I really like the AA Big Book step prayers in general.

I added this section to the lesson.

Do you track things you do daily? Like workouts or track food, track tasks or track taking medication, track recovery time or even likely the most common, track your weight?
Why do we do this?
Here are a few reasons that I came up with on why we track these things:
• If we don’t track, we will forget
• Find your baseline
• Reminds us how far we have come
• See improvements
• The psychological factor – creating a new habit
• Own your goals
• Celebrate Milestones
• Use the data to identify problems
• Keeps you accountable
• Tracking can push you to do more
• Keeping track, keeps you on track

One way to keep track of your good and bad behavior is to journal. A journal is a tool for you to review and write down the good and the bad things you did today.
I created a journaling page, that works for me because I never could find the right one. Some people prefer blank journals but that is too open for me, I need more structure. Some people like journals that ask questions and others may even rather use an app. There’s an app for that for sure! This tool has been a great help to my program no matter what type of journaling format used.
I have discovered behavior patterns that not otherwise been so obvious. Issues that I keep writing down again and again are something that needs to be addressed. Maybe with my sponsor or a counselor if needed. Then I am able to set up an action plan, with God’s help, to overcome them.

Here are screen shots of my Daily Inventory sheets. Take what you need and leave the rest! (The lines are wonky in these pics but you get the idea!)

If you are not journaling as a part of your journey, give it a go and tell me how it works for you.

My journey to serenity continues…

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

Keep your spoon in your own bowl! 

I heard ‘keep your spoon in your own bowl’ a while ago a podcast about codependency. I just love that visual. 

It’s about not getting involved in others problems. Or help them fix them. To not give your opinion about what’s going on. Or solve it for them. Often times we just need others to listen and allow us to figure it out ourselves. 

There is a thing happening in our world today that for some reason everyone thinks they have to share their opinion even when it wasn’t asked for. And especially if it’s an opposing opinion. Everyone has a solution for every problem because they think they know the answer. 

But it occurred to me today that there is another side to this that I learned about through recovery. 


That is, to be careful who you invite to put their spoon in your bowl. 

Inviting unhealthy people into my problems, it’s actually a terrible idea. Inviting highly opinionated people into my bowl just may change what’s in my bowl. And suddenly I am not trusting my program or even trusting God but seeking others approval or wanting to just rehash the same story over and over and over with no solutions. 

That reminds me when I was a kid, I’d stir and stir and stir my icecream and my dad would say ‘can you please eat the icecream otherwise you are making icecream soup.’

Stirring and stirring and stirring problems just makes problem soup. Stirring problems with the wrong person ends up with just a big mess with spills and arguments and spoons getting in the way. 

I get to choose who and what I share. It’s called boundaries. I know which friends I can share with, and thinking about that they are my recovery friends. Because they get the sharing without offering solutions until I ask for them. 

And they get that often I just need to process what’s going on and they allow me time. 

And they get the thing about trusting God and really We don’t need every detail, all we need to know is that we are heading in the right direction and all we need to do is trust God. And things fall into place. 

And finally, they know to keep their spoon in their own bowl. 

My journey to serenity continues…
And I took the picture of that spoon after I had some icecream =]