Skeletons 2.6 – My Recovery Reflection

Reflection (past) – Hindsight is 20/20…sometimes.

Sooooooo, we decided it was a good idea to go to Las Vegas for Easter weekend 2018.

Easter weekend in Sin City? Really? Yes!

With the kids? You know it! 

We needed to get out of dodge. H suggested it and I said “hey, why not?” The plan was to leave early on Saturday morning so we had 2 full days. But something unexpected happened two  days before that threw me into panic mode: We had a lice infestation!!!

I will spare you the series of events that occurred but let’s just say, once again, I made things harder for myself than they needed to be. It was a cluster of a situation that had me crying and cursing myself left and right.  We were close to canceling the trip all together but I gave in and spent every pretty penny’s worth on having it professionally removed.

The whole debacle was such an ordeal, I knew there was no way we were going to get on the road as early as we had planned. And we didn’t. We lost the entire day and arrived to our hotel at 5pm.  Not the end of the world, at least we made it and enjoyed the time we did get to spend there. However, I’ve reflected a bunch since we’ve been back and have caught myself doing a little bit of self-loathing with the “coulda, woulda, shouda” statements (CWSs):

I could have saved a lot of time, stress and tears if I would have just slowed down instead of rushing to fix the problem without informing myself better. I should have done more research.

If only I could have seen them sooner; then I would have taken care of it before it got so bad. I should have been paying closer attention. 

I might as well be incarcerated for the mental beat downs I give myself, I mean damn.  When this pattern of “stinking thinking” takes over, I cannot be in the present or of any use to others. So, figuratively speaking, I am a prisoner…..in my own mind.

This “stinking thinking” has carried over into my recovery life as well. I remember somewhere in year #3, S2 said “I wish you would put as much time into your spiritual fitness as you do your physical fitness.” Looking back, I totally get what she was saying.

As I reflect on the first 4 years of my recovery, the CSWs held me back from taking it really seriously.  Plus, I still hadn’t accepted my alcoholism and was l”ugging around my baggage,” so I always had one foot in and one foot out when it came to AA.  I thought it was all about drinking and as long as I wasn’t drinking, I was good.

Other than that, as I talked about in Part 1, my recovery from March 2012 – December 2016, was half-assed, at best. I did the bare minimum of what was required of me and flew below the radar. I did not “get in the middle” and fall in love with the program or the fellowship. Sure, I was cordial and even made friends but I was basically faking the whole recovery part. Yep, I celebrated each year abstinent from alcohol, took dirty tokens, and celebrated others do the same. I was genuine when it came to my interactions, most of my shares, the relationships I formed and what I brought to the table in terms of friendship. However, everything pertaining to recovery was pretty much an act but I wasn’t just fooling others, I was fooling myself as well.

In hindsight, if I HAD taken suggestions and done everything that I coulda, woulda shoulda done in early recovery, I probably would have “gotten it” sooner and not wasted the first 4 years at war with myself, delaying my growth as a spiritual woman in recovery.

But see, I thought that if I revealed my BBS to others, they would think less of me, internalizing this negative belief that I am automatically less deserving of all the gifts that recovery and working with others had to offer.

After 2 more years of meetings (still on again, off again,) a lot of prayer, self reflection, and candid discussions with people in and outside the rooms of AA, I now have a different perspective so here’s what I think of that:

FTS!

#morewillberevealed

Skeletons 2.4 – My Recovery Responsibility

Responsibility (past & present): “Every time you point a finger at someone, there are 3 pointing back at you.” – Unknown

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My favorite game to play in life has been the “blame game.”  Call me out and my go to reaction is more often than not, defensive. I will go to great lengths to justify my mistakes by giving you all the details that led up to them, paying particular attention to who and/or what I could blame so that I am pardoned. Not only that, if push comes to shove, I’ll even unfold my laundry list of transgressions made against me to deflect from the issue at hand.

Before taking my recovery and spirituality seriously, my former ROD had pointed this out to me in the past and I would deny it tooth and nail. I didn’t even understand this concept and had never heard of the “blame game” until S2 related to me when discussing marital quarrels. She stated that she too could be a “blamer” and that it’s important to be mindful of our roles in difficult circumstances and to not shift blame where it doesn’t belong.

When it came to my drinking, everyone, everything and what happened around me was to blame and I carried that mindset with me into recovery.  If I couldn’t make a meeting, complete some step work or get together with my sponsor or friends in the program, you best believe I had an excuse as to why and it was almost always not my fault. Unless backed into a corner, I straight up could never take responsibility for ANYTHING.

If I didn’t know better today, I’d likely still be twisting, manipulating and lying my way out of everything so long as it didn’t hurt anyone and I felt assured that I remained in your good graces. Old habits die hard and I have to really check myself at times.

Truth be told, my recovery suffered because of all the lies I was telling myself: I’m not an alcoholic, I’m not like everyone else, they need help more than me, everyone else made do (or not do) it, I will drink again someday, blah blah freakin’ blah.

There’s only one person to blame for my slow progress and spiritual growth in recovery. All I had to do was take a look in the mirror to see the real person at fault:

Me, myself and I.

#morewillberevealed

Skeletons 2.3 – My Reckonings

Reckonings: “Most of us have been unwilling to admit we were real alcoholics. No person likes to think he is bodily and mentally different from his fellows.” (BB, Chapter 3)

I’ll never forget a moment that occurred while talking to my sister on the phone.  It was day time. I was drunk and I remember saying to her something to the effect of:

“I’m an alcoholic and I don’t care.”

I’m quite certain that is the only time I ever called myself an alcoholic and actually believed it. Up until the end of 2016, every other time was me just saying it because that’s what I knew everyone wanted to hear and/or expected me to say. In my heart of hearts, I knew I was but I just could NOT accept it.

“My name is Pixie and I’m an alcoholic.” And in my head I’d say next , “not really but I’ll pretend to be so you leave me alone.”

I was no stranger to AA, however. See, with every sizable consequence that could have been way worse, I’d go to a meeting or 2 just to compare myself to “real alcys” and prove to myself that I wasn’t AS bad as them. They say to look for the similarities and not the differences. Not this stubbon ass. Alllllll I cared about were finding the differences and if there were similarities,  I still deemed them way worse off than me. The most common comparison I made was to my uncle. Alcohol literally ruined and essentially took his life. Surely if that’s what alcoholism looks like, then I am definitely not an alcoholic…right?

What I didn’t realize for a long time is that I was exactly like him, I just hadn’t gotten there yet.

My fierce pride and obsession to drink was so strong, it took several interventions to finally get me to agree to seek treatment (albeit, kicking and screaming.) And not the type of interventions you see in those reality shows where there’s a professional interventionist and letters being read by a big group of people. (Yes, I compared myself to those people too.) Just a handful of concerned loved ones telling me I needed to fix the drinking problem before it got worse.

Fact: alcoholism is a progressive disease. It always gets worse the longer one stays in their addiction. And mine did. Aside from an intervention I did on myself in 2011, I was intervened on 3 other times. I was hanging out with one of my exes, drunk on the rooftop in the middle of a work day just minutes before the first one happened. The final two interventions occurred 6 years later on a weekend – one on Saturday and the other the very next day.  I was in legal trouble and wasn’t supposed to be drinking anymore. But I just could.not.stop and I’d get sick thrills out of hiding it when I could. So having that attractive image in your mind, try to get a a clearer visual as I relive it for you here:

#1: Saturday –  The previous night, I went to see a movie with one of my besties*, aka one of my peas in my pod (PEA) or my ride or dies (ROD.) I was 3-4 drinks in before meeting up with her and she could totally tell.  We had a bite to eat and then went to see a romance movie. I passed out and missed all but 5 minutes of the flick.** PEA had to wake me up and I drove home…without my phone.  I don’t know how I made it home safely or how H didn’t smell the booze on my breath in the morning.  We went to an early breakfast and I couldn’t believe I was pulling it off.

By now I had realized my phone was at the theater so I retrieved it on my way to my parents house where I was meeting my other bestie at the time, ROD, to go for a hike. Shortly after my arrival, H called my parents’ house requesting a sit down. PEA had texted him to make sure I had gotten home safe because I didn’t text her when I got home.

I can’t remember my exact demeanor but I’m pretty sure I wasn’t freaking out.  In fact, I know I was relatively calm because as soon as I met eyes with my former ROD, it was almost as if I didn’t have to tell her. She knew. I knew. We both knew. Yep, I had been caught red handed and it was right then that I laughed my last laugh for a good long while when ROD looked at me and said “I’m going to call you RED from here on out.”

Hence the birth of a new nickname and boy did I take it seriously. So much that on the way home, I was sent into the grocery store to get I don’t even know what, and I had the balls to buy 2 more mini-boxed wines and smuggle them inside my purse for the next day. Nevermind the fact that I had literally JUST promised my husband and parents that I would never do that again.

#2: Sunday – H went into the office, as he did often early in his career. I figured I had enough time to drink one and sober up before he got home. But then he called and told me to get to an AA meeting. My car was at my parents house so I asked a dear friend for a ride and she gladly obliged.*** I went to a meeting buzzed, came home and continued to drink a little more. Next thing I know, H is home and he smells it. He leaves to get our parents and so what did I do? I left too.

It was about 2 hours and an ultimatum later and I was back in my living room telling H and our parents how much I hated my life. It was decided that I was to stay at my parents house that night and get evaluated for rehab the following morning.  Can you imagine what that must have looked like?

Have you ever experienced….

…..taking a dog for a walk when they don’t feel like it?

…..trying to give a cat a bath when it’s in their natural instinct to clean themselves?

…..dressing a toddler who is does not want to stay put?

Yeah, it kinda went down like that.

#morewillberevealed

Skeletons 2.2 – My Recovery Review

**Disclaimer: As mentioned in my About page, this blog has morphed into way more than I thought it would and with that has come various changes over the past 3 years.  I’ve updated the Home Page again to reflect those changes so check it out if the mood strikes you. Wanna know what else I did? Obviously that’s a rhetorical question because of course I’m going to tell you whether you want me to or not. I decided that I need to stop insisting new readers start reading from the very beginning; especially since this is Part 2. If I need to reference something from Part 1, then I’ll just link to the referenced post; just like I did in this paragraph…twice…and in the first sentence under this disclaimer. Simple as that.**


Review: KISS – “Keep it simple, stupid.” 

In June (2018), it will be 20 years since I graduated high school. As you already know (and if you are a new reader, then you don’t; so if you are curious, click the link above) I became ASB President by default, not by choice. This meant I gave the graduation speech and (basically) was committed to planning our future reunion(s).

Since I planned the 10 year* I knew that everyone would automatically assume I would do the 20 year and I was procrastinating. Honestly? I really didn’t want the responsibility. I was kiiiiinda hoping it would just pass by and no one would say anything. But I know myself. I would then feel bad and start wondering if I let people down, sending me into this little rabbit hole of “what ifs” and “what do they think of me? do they hate me now?” etc.**

But someone did say something and the more I mulled it over I was like “fine! I’ll do it. But not by myself,” and an event page was formed.

Here’s the thing though: I’m a perfectionist.  I obsess over finite details and complicate things for myself. Like, all the time.  So now my brain is getting a smidge overwhelmed by all the ideas popping into my head – the whos/whats/whens/wheres of the whole thing. The more I think about it, the more daunting the task feels….ugh…but then I remember, ‘oh yeah, I’m not doing it alone this time. Phewf!’

The same can be said about my recovery. I have made it waayyyyyyy harder for myself than it needs to be because I have allowed myself to believe that I need to do it perfectly. I have listened to countless shares in the rooms of AA and compared my recovery to everyone else’s. Simply put: my alcoholic, codependent, perfectionist thinking told me that my recovery had to look a certain way in order to be considered (and remain) sober.

Before I dive in to WTF happened that finally forced me into a new life without alcohol, let’s review what my recovery has looked like, as laid out in Part 1; in chronological order, of course :

  • I’ve been lying and carrying around a BBS and I’m sick of it.
  • I was a dry drunk feeling bad for not working a program the AA way and have spent a lot of time reconsidering my AA membership.
  • Aside from a few relapses in early recovery, I have reverted to thinking and behaving alcoholically and I blame this on not having put more effort into my program up until this past year. So essentially, I’m still a “newcomer” and learning.
  • I’ve had 2 sponsors in recovery and have been without one for almost 3 years. I’m not 100% clear on if I will ever have one again. I also have never sponsored anyone and I’m not 100% clear on whether I ever will either. (THAT has changed. You should follow me so you can keep reading!)
  • At (almost) 9 years in recovery and being in and out of the rooms of AA the entire time, I have discovered two things:
  1. I AM an alcoholic and should stay sober from alcohol for the rest of my life and
  2. While I no longer have a drinking problem, I still have a thinking problem that I need to work on with the help of outside support.

Just like becoming ASB president wasn’t my choice, neither was recovery.  I started my journey with support, but wanted to be left alone.

Just like not wanting any part of planning the reunion, I wanted no part of recovery. I started my journey alone but didn’t want to be IN it alone.

And just like accepting my role as reunion planner took me a few, so did accepting my alcoholism. I started my journey a hard core dry drunk and the road to getting where I am today has felt somewhat lonely.

By choice.

That is, until God intervened.

#morewillberevealed

My Rebellion and Recovery Rekindled

This was originally published on March 4, 2018.

Rekindled: Friends walk in and out of our lives but the good ones always find their way back or never leave to begin with.

**Disclaimer: This is the last post of “What the Hell it Was Like” and it is long AF. The topics include nicknames and roommates (and it has a lot of asterisks!) 

Excluding my husband, I have had a total of 7 roommates in adulthood. All of these roommates have experienced me at various stages of my drinking career and it’s safe to say that I still owe some of them amends. Of these 7, 3 are still in my life today. 1 is my sister and the other 2 are friends for 20+ years – I love them so much they might as well be family.

I’ve gone by numerous nicknames given by these 3 individuals. Most fizzled out and others I answer to to this day. In fact, one of the names with my sister (R2) that we both STILL answer to stemmed from a non-word an ex-boyfriend would add to the end of people’s names.  15’ish years later and we still call each other this 3 letter non-word-nickname.

My very first roommate, R1, was one of my BFFs from high school. You know WTF you are. We were connected at the hip.  We did everything together – wore each other’s clothes, spent the night at each other’s houses, made embarrassing music videos, shared a couple hook-ups, went to the same college, shared a dorm and of course, discovered our fondness for alcohol together.  Our high school shenanigans and silly nicknames long gone, we were embracing this new freedom of living on our own; and with that came a lot of fun for us novice party girls. Remember, we graduated from a relatively strict school – a school that parents would send their kids to if they were up to no good at their public school.* So going from our conservative backgrounds to a very large public university in another state was like an episode out of Season 1 of “Breaking Amish.”**

Sophomore year we shared an apartment with 2 other girls we met through a mutual friend. At this point, I was now in an exclusive relationship with my first long term boyfriend – the previously mentioned “loser of all losers” – and my grades were suffering. I was infatuated to the point where I just wanted to be back home closer to him. Selfishly, I ended up subleasing my room out to a total stranger and moved home.  That’s when our friendship changed. While I try not to wish to change or regret the past, I do have remorse for how that made R1 feel.

Post college life, we both went on different paths in different states.  She settled down earlier in life with a career and family while I just partied and cruised with no plan or direction. There was never a definitive “end” to our friendship, per se.  Things just never were the same and eventually I let it go. I always loved her, thought of her often and wished her well.

Years passed and once again, God knows exactly what and who I need in my life at the right time. His perfect timing, not mine. I heard from this friend about 6 months ago, at a time when I was experiencing “valleys” in life. One online communication led to another and next thing we knew, we’re chatting daily via the Marco Polo app. We had discovered that we each had something valuable to offer the other and our friendship rapidly rekindled.  Both of our lives have changed drastically since God got us back together. We’re just scratching the surface and finding out what we are capable of as re-kindred-spirits. He works in mysterious ways, I tell you. Mysterious ways.

My sister, R2, was my roommate my entire childhood up until I left for college (obviously.)  We didn’t live together again until about 5 years later. Considering what little information I have just provided you, all you need to know is this: girlfriend has seen some shit. Especially when I was living with R3, my brother by choice (BBC.)

I’d known R3 since 7th grade and we ended up being in the same social circle in high school.  I hooked up with his friends and he hooked up with mine but we never were like that with each other. We’ve always had a brother and sister vibe going on. I’ll never forget back in 2005, another BBC and I met up with R3 and his best friend, the same guy I lost my virginity to on high school graduation night.***I can only recall snippets of that short visit to that downtown drinking establishment (I talk about those snippets in the above asterisk,) nor do I remember going to bed. I do remember the morning after though. R3’s mom woke us up and I was in his bed….WITH him…(GASP!)…fully clothed (PHEWF!)

Unlike many a’dirtbag I unfortunately wasted my time on, he was a perfect gentleman and did not take advantage of my vulnerable state while severely under the influence. Within a couple of months, at the suggestion of R3’s best friend (and my future husband,) I was moving in with him and another guy I did not know.****I had a boyfriend at the time so this living arrangement was purely platonic.

Sidenote: Yes, I had just cheated on said boyfriend (BF) with said future husband (FH.)*****

Yes, BF suspected said indiscretion and I totally lied; shamelessly convincing him I was telling the truth so that he’d stay with me. Never mind the fact that I did not love this dude AT ALL, nor see a future with him, I simply just couldn’t be alone and just HAD to have someone. (eye roll)

Remember, I said to expect brutal honesty and when it comes to men…I mean, guys…wait no, boys…the good, bad, mean and obscene…they are a huge part of my story. So huge that they will get their own page.******

Anyway, R3 and I discovered we both enjoyed the effects of alcohol so much that it became our favorite past time. We frequented dive bars, snuck into hotel pools, took a gazillion pictures for MySpace and “bit the hair of the dog” more times than I can count. My alter ego was born and R3 gave me the name Pixie. This period of my life stands out as one of my most alcoholic times and memories from that chapter are bittersweet.  I was on the path of self-destruction AND falling in love with FH at the same exact time.

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R3 gave this to A1 a couple Christmas’ ago…clearly I decided it belonged to me.

The longer I lived in this home by the bay, the worse my alcoholism got and I started to suffer consequences (again.) At the end, FH was now my boyfriend exclusively and we agreed R3 and I were bad influences on each other.  Telling R3 that I was moving out was hard and I think he was pretty mad at me at the time. R3, you know WTF you are. I have more to say and you can read more by going to the Letters page.

When I decided to embark on this anonymous project, it only seemed appropriate to rekindle my former alter-ego and use Pixie as my “pen name.”  It’s safe to say that I now have grown attached to it and even considered using it in “the rooms.”  But then B1 talked me out of that one saying people might think I was a little crazy.

Which, I am. I accept that. But she’s right. Just because I embrace the crazy doesn’t mean I need to unleash the crazy. Being in recovery has helped me practice mindfulness and self-awareness to recognize when my thinking goes sideways. It also helps having people in my life who inspire me to see past the one thing that gets in my way of living happy, joyous & free and that one thing is this:

ME!

#morewillberevealed

#part2comingupnext

Skeletons 1.9 – My Ridiculousness

This was originally published on Valentine’s Day 2018.

Ridiculousness: One drink is too many and a thousand is not enough.

Weddings. Oh how I love weddings. I’ve attended and/or participated in many but I’ve only NOT drank at 3 of them – 2 of them I wished I could drink and 1, the thought to drink didn’t even cross my mind. The rest though? The mere thought would have been laughable at the time.

Like bachelorette parties, weddings meant overshooting the mark with my alcohol consumption.  Well, except for my own wedding.

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Seriously, it’s true. I don’t know how but I did NOT blackout or make a complete ass out of myself.  Nor did I wake up hungover. WHAT? I know…believe it!

As for the rest of the weddings I attended during my drinking career, there are a myriad of things I wish I didn’t do while bamboozled at these momentous occasions. Want me to share a few of them? Of course you do:

1) 2003 – Baltimore, MD: After an entire 6 pack of Michelob Ultra Lites to myself, I thought it was a good idea to spend money I did not have to follow my boyfriend (whom I had just broken up with) to a wedding on the east coast.  I was kicked out of the after party for being too intoxicated and not allowed back in. Ridiculous.

2) 2005 – San Diego, CA: At the reception, I confronted the maid of honor for something she said about me to her fiance (over the phone as I pretended to sleep) at the bachelorette party (the one of the two I had to remove myself from.) She wasn’t necessarily lying to him at the time but rather, gossiping and exaggerating something she got wind of which WAS true. Ridiculous. Hm, wait a sec. That sounds like something yours truly has been known to do in the past. I owe her an amends for that. **Update, I learned this woman is also in the program, I made amends and she quickly became one of my birdies**

3) 2006 – Lodi, CA: I brought an old guy friend as my date to a wedding. At the rehearsal dinner, I told everyone we were betrothed, practicing my would-be new signature on cocktail napkins. He never spoke to me again after that weekend.*Ridiculous.

4) 2009 – Breckinridge, CO: Newlyweds for 2 months, I shared an intimate moment with my husband (H) by the upstairs elevator in the reception hall and then yelled down to the crowded room below and told them what we had just done…(GASP!)…calm down, calm down, not a single person heard me…(PHEWF!)…seriously, not a single head turned in my direction, I remember…this was about 30 minutes before I entered a complete blackout. Not surprising considering I’m holding not one but 2 glasses of wine in this photo below. Still though, ridiculous.

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Okay, one of them had to be H’s but I do not put it past me to have drank out of his as well just because I could.

5) 2011 – Rancho Santa Fe, CA: At the reception, someone asked me to help direct people to the “photo booth” so my drunk ass went and took the microphone from the DJ to direct everyone’s attention to ME instead…. “Heyyyyy, I just want everyone to know….” Ridiculous.

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6) 2012 – Bend, OR: Took responsibility of a toddler because I deemed her parents too messed up to take care for her themselves. Meanwhile, I was also sneaking glasses of wine that I wasn’t supposed to be drinking and thinking it was perfectly acceptable to be the DD at the end of event. Ridiculous.

Crazy right? The more my alcoholism progressed, the more ridiculous I got.  Had things not gone down the way they had, I likely would have made even more of a spectacle of myself or worse, not made it to my cousin’s wedding at all.

Had I not accepted my alcoholism and remained a dry drunk, I would have attended with a chip on my shoulder and sat sulking in my “self-pity party of 1” making everyone around me uncomfortable. I’m so happy I finally chose recovery over misery because 6 years ago, I wanted no part of it.

One drink.

Just one.

That’s all it would take for me to lose EVERYTHING because of this one simple fact:

We are without defense against the first drink. (BB pg 24)

#morewillberevealed

Skeletons 1.8 – My Recovery Rejection

This post was originally published on February 3, 2018.  Things have changed since I wrote this.  I am no longer in AA, as I have decided to enmesh myself in church.  It was a conscious decision that I had made several times but this time, it’s sticking.  I will forever be grateful to AA and its members.  I wouldn’t be here without it.

Rejection: “Keep coming back, it works if you work it….because you’re worth it.” 

I went to my home group meeting last night. I call it my home group but it’s really my ONLY group. I have gone to many a’meeting in my recovery, although, not as many as I’ve been told I should. I’ve taken long sabbaticals from all things AA multiple times because either a) I had a baby or b) I was over it all. However, I’ve kept.coming.back.

This home group was not my first home group. I had 2 before this one, just like I have had 2 sponsors. I have been going to this particular meeting for the past 3+ years, off and on, and have not had a sponsor, a sponsee OR a drink the entire time. On March 30th, I will not have had a single sip of alcohol for 6 years (now almost 9!)

Six.

S-I-X.

I know a lot of women who have more time than me and others who have less but we are all alcoholics trying to get sober, stay sober and help others do the same. Have I considered myself an alcoholic this whole time? Nope. Have I wanted to “pass on the message” as suggested in Step 12? Nope.  As you know, there was a time that I refused to accept my alcoholism, hated AA and had zero desire to “carry the message to the alcoholic that still suffers.” (Tradition 5, BB pg 562)

Today though? I fully accept my alcoholism, I NEED a sponsor and I want to help other women. I truly think it is one of my main purposes in life.  Never did I ever think I’d feel this way.  I seriously have wanted to abandon AA so many times. I have sworn I’d never get a sponsor again, nor will I ever sponsor another alcoholic.  I have numerous explanations for this but I don’t want to get ahead of myself; ‘cuz, you know, I tend to do that. I’ll get there though, I promise.

Tonight, I met a woman who seemed desperate. When she walked into the room, I’m ashamed to admit, I judged her – thinking she was sure to be drunk, on drugs, or both. I watched her off and on during the meeting and felt like God needed me to talk to her but would I? After the close of the meeting, I overheard her ask another woman if she was sponsoring and she was told no. Kindly, not rudely, of course. But the searching woman slowly walked away, taking one final glance around the room and exited. Go, Pixie, go after her. That’s exactly what I felt compelled to do and I did. I introduced myself, reached out my hand, she took it but didn’t tell me her name back.  She expressed a strong desire to find a sponsor and I wanted to say “I will!” but I couldn’t.

Remember, I don’t have a sponsor; and when finding a sponsor, it is suggested that you work with someone who also has a sponsor. Even though I am a rebel, my conscience won’t allow me to disobey that “rule” because working together isn’t really an option within the confines of AA.  I still wanted to be of service so I gave her B3’s number because I know she’s ready to take on sponsees. The woman was abundantly thankful, embraced me and I hugged her back. I wasn’t sure when she’d let go but I let her do it first. It felt so good.

I found myself crying on the way home, sad at the fact that I can’t be her or anyone else’s sponsor at this present time.

Then my sadness turned to anger. I was angry at the reason why and that is this:

The last person I asked to be my “temporary sponsor” while I sorted my whole BBS and AA out, told me she would not sponsor me UNLESS I was willing to work with her on her terms. Fair enough. I’m not angry at her. I still think she’s awesome…and still wish that she’d be my sponsor (you know WTF you are!) I reached out to another woman to just TALK about finding a sponsor but she misunderstood me and also told me no, she would not sponsor me. I don’t carry a resentment towards her either. She’s a radiant human being and she still inspires me.

No, I’m angry at the evolution of AA and how its members have defined sobriety and recovery. “Their Way” would suggest that I am not “qualified” to be considered a sober, recovering alcoholic who can be sponsored and sponsor others.*

“They” would say I think I’m unique.  As a human being, yes, I am. We ALL are. There is not a single person out there who is exactly like me. God made me ME. Just like he made each and every one of “them” (and you too!) unique in their (your) own special ways. But do I think I’m unique when it comes to the disease of alcoholism? Helllllllll no. For me, “to drink is to die.” I used to hate it when people said that in the rooms. I’d roll my eyes if I knew no one would see me. But today, I accept that as my truth and have no issue talking about it with anyone who wants, needs and/or deserves to listen.

Everything that I just shared has been weighing on me for the longest time. Where do I go from here? I pray daily for God to direct my thoughts, words and actions. I turn my will over to the care of my loving HP and know “the answers will come if my own house is in order.”

I THINK my prayers have been answered.

AM I worth it? I think I am, but do they?

Will they?

#morewillberevealed

Skeletons 1.7 – My Replay

This was originally published on January 30, 2018

Replay (past): “Playing back the tape” never fails to set me straight.

Bachelorette parties. Man oh man. I’ve planned and/or attended many and it’s safe to say, there were no shortage of drunken shenanigans when it came to my participation. As my alcoholism progressed, so did my “hot mess” status at these shin-digs. In fact, I cannot believe I wasn’t at my own party almost 9 years ago. Wait, was I?

Okay, fine, I cannot remember every single detail. But I remember A LOT. Enough that I know I was never in a complete blackout….ehhhh, okay, I don’t remember much about the strippers and was completely oblivious to one of my bridesmaids going off on one of them. Nor do I recall passing out next to said bridesmaid at the end of the night. But I do have THE most flattering picture of above mentioned “slumber party.” So hot.

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So not! 

Annnyyyywayyyy, what I’m trying to say is that I was tame for my own bach. Tame compared to others. There are 2 in particular that I literally had to remove myself from because I was far too wasted and knew I had to get the F into bed before something bad happened. The last bach of my drinking days was the worst. So beyond…I can’t.

I cannot.

But I will.

In a list…of course:

  1. Arrived in Las Vegas already drunk.
  2. Spoke very obscenely in a room full of chicks that I did not know, except for 2 of them.
  3. Paid $20 for buffet meal that I couldn’t eat because I needed to puke but couldn’t (sick!)
  4. Somehow rallied and made it to the male entertainment club where I made a big stink about no one paying for the bride to get in. I paid for her and proceeded to complain to one of her friends about it for a good 10 minutes.
  5. Spent too much money at such an establishment.
  6. Lost my purse at MY final stop for the night.  Couldn’t find it anywhere and when I did, it was literally in plain sight. That’s when I decided it was time to go.
  7. I mouthed off to the my cab driver.
  8. Got lost trying to find our room and proceeded to sit in the floor lobby area calling people and crying.
  9. Somehow reconnected with friends and we went to get food.
  10. Couldn’t sleep so I left for the airport thinking I could get on an earlier flight.
  11. I could not and found myself at the bar with a bunch of strangers, making “friends,” and crying again.
  12. Called my parents balling and confessing that I had broken my “personal detox.” (That’s right, I was meant to be sober at this party…what a joke.)
  13. Finally arrived home only to drive my car a far distance to my house. Drunk.

You guys, how was I not raped, murdered or arrested for DUI or vehicular manslaughter? 1 out of the 4 of those things just mentioned had already happened during my “drinking career” and the rest are my “yets.” That’s where drinking had taken me. I repeat: incomprehensible demoralization.

Welllllllllll…..it happened again. This past weekend was C2’s bach and I had to call it a night before everyone else. I had a burning pain sensation just under my rib cage that had started as we left the hotel room for dinner and a show. It kept coming and going, increasing with intensity.*  I was not myself and you could tell but I wasn’t going to let it stop me from seeing some comedy with everyone else and of course, I did not want to disappoint the bride. I was miserable and went right to bed after. It was then that I realized: wow, I left a bach AGAIN but this time I’m not hammered but rather in physical agony.

Oh the irony.

It’s like a replay of those past bach events, played by the same actor under a different director. And for what purpose? To remember what it was like and be grateful I never have to live like that again if I don’t want to.

Recovery. What a gift.

#morewillberevealed

Skeletons 1.6 – My Recovery Regroup

This post was originally published on January 26, 2018.

Regroup: Rock bottom or a life worth living? The choice was and still is mine to make.

Speaking of bottoms, just because I quit drinking doesn’t mean my life is all rainbows and unicorns spewing glitter out of their asses 24/7. In fact, it is said that once you quit drinking, life often gets worse before it gets better.  My life did get better pretty quickly when I quit but believe you me, I’ve walked through some shit the past couple of years. Considering how my recovery has looked, it’s a wonder that I didn’t drink.

So my birthday weekend didn’t go exactly as I had envisioned and resentments got to brewing.  Hardcore brewing to a boil. Which brought upon a funk that took me down for 2 days. I knew exactly what I needed to do to get out of it but I was stuck.  And now that I’m out of it, I think I was stuck because I wanted to stay resentful. I was pissed and I wanted validation and justice.

It’s clear to me now that I was subconsciously punishing myself for being so worked up over what now doesn’t seem that big of a deal. Had I told her what was going on and how I was handling it, I can hear S2 saying “and how’s that workin’ for ya?” And my answer would be: it’s not. My piss poor attitude was not only punishing myself but literally everyone I came into contact with. I found myself behaving “alcoholically” and briefly fantasizing about saying fuck it and drink AT the issues instead of picking up the tools that I had gathered in my recovery process.  I had a choice and I was choosing misery. Sounds insane, right? Who consciously chooses to feel miserable and make everyone else suffer with them?

Alcoholics and addicts, that’s who.  When it came to my drinking, I was faced with the choice to quit countless times.  In fact, I made multiple oaths to either quit for a certain amount of time or put the bottle down for good but they were all failed attempts and the the end result was always the same: pitiful and incomprehensible demoralization (BB, pg 30.)

Wanna know what’s even more insane? After that birthday night in 2012, I was in trouble with the law and was told I had to quit drinking. But I still did. I still got behind the wheel intoxicated. I even got a sick high from hiding my drinking and not getting caught. But that also stopped working for me and I was left with no choice…literally…I was forced to quit drinking. But I’m getting ahead of myself.

Bottom line: I had to regroup last week.  I had to “get back to basics.” I had to have a talk with my HP (and a couple “peas in my pod,” you know WTF you are) and choose to press on with a positive attitude and accept the things that I couldn’t change and change the things that I knew I could.

It’s been a week since my funk and I’m back to my old happy-go-lucky-annoyingly-positive self.  Had I chosen to drink at my issues, I guarantee you I’d be in a world of pain.

Or in jail.

Or in rehab.

Or dead.

I think I made the right choice, don’t you?

#morewillberevealed

#step5

P.S. By the way, I made some adjustments to the the format of the blog. You can read about it on my homepage. Go check it out by clicking here. (Or don’t and figure it out for yourself. I don’t know why you would choose to do that but just like all of us, our choices are ours to make and if you get lost in the process, then you have no one to blame but your own GD self. Namaste.)

Skeletons 1.5 – My Recollection

This was orginially published January 25, 2018.

Recollection: “We shall not regret the past nor wish to shut the door on it.” (The Promises, BB pg.83)

It’s been over a week since I posted and not gonna lie (NGL) I allllllmost decided that I was going to stop this whole thing all together.  I’m not going to go into why that was but everything inside me says to keep on going so that is what I’m going to do.  Again, my timeline for this whole project isn’t important anymore and I  don’t know why I keep getting “stuck” on it.  This kind of thinking is similar to when I get wrapped up in living in the past and “if I had just done it this way” self-talk nonsense. Sigh. FML. I can hear sibling unrest downstairs. Do I go attempt to assist or let daddy handle it? Why am I even contemplating, of course he can handle it.

It was my “belly button” birthday (BBB) last weekend and needless to say, my expectations were high.  I have always loved my birthday. I grew up in a family where birthdays were celebrated more than once (nuclear family, extended family and friends) and I was the center of attention (insert eye roll here.) Once A1 was born (3 days after my BBB,) celebrating me didn’t seem that important anymore – and not just because of her but also because of what happened on my birthday the year before in 2012. It’s because of that birthday weekend that year that I was extra excited for this year’s celebrations and also why I experienced a mini-let down when it didn’t go exactly how I had envisioned.

January 2012, Iiiiiiii had arranged for a little over-night birthday getaway with my girlfriends (just like I had arranged this year’s celebration, 6 years later.)  The day of my birthday was a Thursday. I worked, my husband was out-of-town for the whole day and evening. So of course, I took myself out to happy hour, a pedicure and shopping for an outfit for the weekend.  Dinner with my sister was to follow, and it did.  I was “3 sheets to the wind” by the time I stepped out of my car and proceeded to drink almost an entire bottle of Riesling with Thai food. Who drinks Riesling with Thai food?! Alcys like me, that’s who!!!  Post dinner, I took a nice little fall outside and gave myself a cut above my eyebrow.  I still drove my ass home, sister following, and realized I still had a good couple hours before I needed to drive a decent distance to pick up the hubs at the train station.  One would think this would be a good time to take a quick snoozer and sober up a bit but nope, not me. I said “bottoms up bitches” and on the road I went. You can guess what happened next.

I never made it to the train station.

I didn’t make it to work the next day.

I had to cancel my birthday weekend.

And…

I was on my way to my bottom…fast.

#morewillberevealed