There Are No Coincidences

Sometimes things just come together and leave you scratching your head and thinking, “Well fuck me naked!  That could never happen again in a million years!”

That happened to me this weekend.

As you are well aware, I’m trying to get my shit together this year in some old (nutrition and exercise) and new (therapy) ways.  That means there’s a lot of work to do in the inside as well as the outside.  In fact, the longer I’m into this navel gazing, the more I realize that if I don’t get the inside right the outside will never be right no matter what it looks like.

I know I know…DUH.

Anyway, I was getting ready to take the dogs on a long walk Sunday so I decided to find a podcast to listen to during our journey.  I wanted one by Brene’ Brown but it turns out Brene’ doesn’t do her own podcasts.  However, while looking I found this woman Koren Motekaitis who does a regular podcast called “How She Really Does It”.  I scrolled down the hundreds of recordings until my eyes landed on one that said “Weight Loss After Menopause”.  Well, well, well I thought…this is right up my alley.

I had no idea.

I swear to you this woman being interviewed could have been me.  Seems that Koren is a life coach who conducts a “circle” on weight loss from time to time (www.howshereallydoesit.com ) and this woman she was interviewing was part of one of her former circles.  Everything that came out of that woman’s mouth felt like my words.  From her struggles with typical “diets” (they don’t work) to her conclusion that she had to get in touch with why she ate her emotions (therapy) to her preferred form of movement (walking).  It was really kind of spooky.

As I listened to her discuss how she took off 30 pounds I realized that my gut has been right all along (pun intended).  If I can learn to listen to what my body wants and needs I can work toward recognizing and then making peace with the emotions and feelings that send me to the pantry in search of salt or sugar, and then maybe I can find my body’s natural weight and perhaps, along the way, make peace with food.

Huge run on sentence and even huge-er goal.

Of course all of the above assumes that I can cut through all the crap I tell myself on a regular basis and create a kinder and more compassionate dialog with myself.

That’s where the second half of my day kicks in…

As I mentioned in a previous post, I’m doing Brene’ Brown’s e-course that accompanies her book, “The Gifts of Imperfection” (www.oprah.com/brenebrowncourse).  I’m on week three of six and its been extraordinary thus far.  This week did not disappoint.  I don’t want to give anything away in case you’re thinking of going through the course but suffice to say my biggest takeaway from week three was this…

“I will talk to myself the same way I talk to the people I love.” ~Brene’ Brown

Just another version of what one of my good friends once said to me when I was using my patented self-deprecating humor.

“Never say anything to yourself that you wouldn’t say to your best friend.” ~Sherry’s Friend Patricia

Hear that?

That’s the sound of the brick God threw landing upside my head.

“There are no coincidences.  Only Divine bricks chucked from above.” ~Sherry

Hear that?  No?

That’s the sound of quiet determination.

Namaste

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Namaste

I’ve always signed my posts with the word Namaste.  I don’t do it because its trendy.  I don’t do it because I want to be seen as some kind of fake-ass guru who babbles Sanskrit to make herself appear to be “enlightened”.  I don’t use the term lightly either.  I use it because of what it means.

Simply put, Namaste represents the belief that there is a Divine spark within each of us that is located in the heart chakra. The gesture of placing your palms together at your heart (or your forehead and then your heart) is an acknowledgment of the soul in one by the soul in another.  Nama means bow, as means I, and te means you. Therefore, Namaste literally means “bow me you” or “I bow to you.”

When I began blogging I wanted to end my post with something that would be memorable and give a hint as to who I am (or who I was) and so as a practioner of yoga and meditation, I choose what I believed to be an appropriate word…Namaste.  But the longer I blogged and discovered recovery through this beautiful community the more the meaning of this signature evolved.  Now when I sign off a post, the word Namaste encompass everything I believe to be true about not only recovery from alcoholism but the human race and just being alive on the planet.  In fact, several times I’ve believed that a post was finished only to sign that word at the end and realize…hmmm…nope – needs more work.

For me in this blog, signing my posts this way says “I get you”, I’m in this with you, we’re here together.  My path to sobriety may be different than yours but whether you went through rehab, attend AA, blog, lurk or are still struggling, I see your soul and I want you to see mine.  In fact, since my soul quite literally often ends up on this page, I get you if you’re struggling with ANYTHING – drugs, children, weight loss/fitness goals – anything. So if I don’t believe what I’ve said is authentic and honest, I go back and edit out the bullshit until it is.  Otherwise, I can’t sign it.

The Buddhists believe that the human condition is one of suffering and that our purpose is to seek to relieve that suffering in not only ourselves but in others.  What a perfect definition of this blogging community.  A group of individuals reading, writing and pontificating on what it means to move into the light.  What it means to fight for what we want…peace.

In the movie “Avatar”, when those big, beautiful blue people wanted to express this sentiment they said, “I see you” which meant I see who you are in your soul.  We are one with each other and all things.  We are the same, no better and no worse than anyone else.  We are all living, breathing, suffering and joyous examples of God’s love (or the Universe or the Mother or whatever you choose to believe).  Our purpose is to be kind and compassionate and caring.

This is my wish for all of us. So, from me to you…

Namaste

I “see” you.

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54 at 54 Weekly Update

Went to the doctor today to consult for an endoscopy I have to have done next week (yet another one of the wonderful benefits of drinking….acid reflux and heartburn enough to alarm the primary care doctor) and, of course, they weighed me.

Son of a bitch if I’m not down by 6 pounds!!!!!

That might not seem like a lot if you’re under 40 but anyone who’s over 40 or has been through menopause knows how hard it is to take off any weight when your metabolism has slowed to a snail’s pace.  Not only that but my blood pressure was lower than it’s been in years!!!  110/60!!!!

Wow!  This healthy lifestyle shit must work!  Who knew?

I did.  I just had to get out of my own way long enough to begin the journey.

Quiet determination.

So…last week.  Well, I ate some crap I shouldn’t have (damn chocolate and kettle cooked potato chips – not together mind you) but I didn’t lose my mind AND I got up every morning (so freaking EARLY) and worked out so you know…it’s all good.  Plus, Downton Abbey is really a great show and there are lots of seasons!!!  Yay!

Here are this week’s stats…

80,542 steps and 33.64 miles for the week which equates to an average of 11,506 steps per day and 4.81 miles.

I’ve also made a few changes to the overall plan.

I take one day a week off from exercise.

I don’t track my calories on the weekends (I don’t lose my mind but I don’t track.)

I have one treat day.  Usually Fridays but this week my husband’s birthday is Saturday so that will be my treat day.  Again, nothing crazy but if I have a small piece of cake I’m not going to spend the rest of the weekend beating myself up.

Quiet determination.

Namaste

 

542 33.64 11,506 4.81

 

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Java Talk

sherryd32148:

This is an awesome post by an even more awesome guy who I am so excited is back in the blogosphere. Give it a read…it’ll make you think.

Originally posted on Good2begone:

All I wanted was a jolt of ground bean goodness…..what I got was jousted by corporate campaign to barista my way into an open conversation about topical events.

“Welcome to Starbucks…how may I help you.”

She asked with way too much enthusiasm.

“Ummm….yeah…let me get a café Americana….black….with soy milk on the side…and a brownie.”

She repeated back my order and asked my name.

I smiled and replied-

“Bingo Medley.”

Her sharpie marker stopped just short of the Styrofoam cup. She looked up at me through the piercing in her eyebrow and said-

“Bingo….what?”

“Bingo….Bingo Medley…..its my porn name……” I replied with a smile.

She wrote it on the cup and said it would be ready shortly.

While I waited, I wandered around, and checked out the items on display shelf and pondered….

“I wonder…..would Chai Tea be proper to drink before…..or after a session of Thai Chi…..Or would the…

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Gratitude vs. Grieving

I’ve mentioned several times on this blog that I’m kind of a Polly-Anna when it comes to life.  I can always find a bright side.  I don’t panic even in stressful situations.  I greet everyone with a smile and my first priority in life is to always be kind.  To say that I’m an optimist is a gross understatement.

I’m the one you want to punch in the throat 90% of the time.

I’ve been reading several new blogs recently written by newly sober people (mostly women).  As you would expect in early sober folk, some of these souls are struggling.  In writing my post yesterday and reading these blogs I started thinking, what was the magic potion the last time that got me over the hump.  What made it different that final time?

What made it different was that very same quality that makes people want to stuff a sock in my face.  That quality that helped me get through a rough childhood and still turn out okay.  The quality that keeps a smile on my face long after others have left screaming from the room.  It’s the ability to always see the good, to always stay in the light.

I’m not sure how it started (I have a theory – about Buddhism and enlightenment – but that’s another post entirely) but I know that it comes from a place of gratitude.  So when I quit drinking that last time I decided (and yes, it was a conscious decision) to focus on what sobriety gave me rather than what it took away.

That single decision made all the difference.

You see, the other times I quit I threw a pity party and poor me’d all the hell over the place.

“Poor me I’ll never have fun again.”

“Poor me what will I do without WINE?”

“Poor me what will I do for friends?  No one will want me around.”

That final time I decided to look at what I was gaining by staying sober.  Better sleep, a better relationship with my family, no more hangovers, no more self-hatred, etc.  I also took the time to figure out better ways to do things and reward myself.  So when that first warm spring day arrived and I wanted nothing more than a cold chardonnay on my back porch (a HUGE trigger for me), I found a sparkling water I like and concentrated on the moment.  How the sun felt on my sober face…how the bubbles tickled my sober nose…how the cold, thirst quenching water felt on my parched but sober throat…the coolness of the drink in my not sick tummy.  How clear my head was after an hour or so rather than the beginning strains of more, more, more which was how it used to be.

All I can say is that by focusing on gratitude rather than grief, I was able to get over that hump I wrote about yesterday and find my way to sober and later, recovery.  Don’t get me wrong, it was HARD as hell in the beginning but it was a lot easier than previous attempts when I focused only on what I couldn’t have rather than what I could.

That’s why gratitude lists and journals work so well for so many people.  They provide a way to focus on the positive for those who don’t naturally go there.  They force us to dig (sometimes VERY deep) to find something good about the day, hour or sometimes even minute.  They also give us something to look back on when, no matter how deep we dig, we can’t seem to find one motherfucking thing good about being sober.

And we all have those days.

I love new journals – I don’t actually write in any of them for some reason but I have a lot of them just lying around because (even though I don’t write in them) I can’t bear to throw them away.  I also love new markers and pens so I have a whole drawer full of those as well.  In the early days of my sobriety, when I was hanging on by my beautifully polished acrylic fingernails, I would pick up one or two of these journals, get a pretty, fancy or colorful pen and just jot stuff down.  There was only one rule – it had to be positive, uplifting or productive.  No bitching, moaning, crying or whining allowed.

So I made gratitude lists, I wrote down quotes that helped me get through the day, I wrote down books I wanted to read that would help me stay sober, I wrote down my goals, presents I wanted to buy myself, dreams I had for a sober future – anything that would help me focus on the good things sobriety was bringing me.

I’m just saying that focusing on gratitude and not staying stuck in the grieving process too long is what saved me.  I hope it helps you if you’re struggling.

Namaste

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Deja Vu All Over Again

What’s that feeling you get when you’re doing something hard and you want to give up but you know you shouldn’t but you also know that if you do it will be such a relief not to have to think about what you’re doing anymore?  (Follow all that?)

Well whatever it is – I got a bad case of it.

This happens to me every damn time I start something life changing and it gets hard.  It’s the precursor to relapse.  It’s the thing that bites me on the ass just as I’m about to make some real progress.  It goes something like this…

Me:  “OMG I just can’t do this anymore!  It’s too hard!  It’s not worth all of this work and effort.  I don’t have to do this.  I mean really, I’m FINE!  No problems here a little time away won’t cure.  No one will know if I give up.  It’s all up to me anyway.  I’m strong enough without having to go through all of this.”

Blah, blah, fucking blah.

It did it the 4,327 times I quit smoking.  Then one day I pushed through this phase (again and again) until I was over the hump and could see my way clear to a life without cigarettes.

I did it the three times I quit drinking (I mean seriously tried to quit).  Then one day I pushed through (with lots of tears and tantrums) until I was over the hump and could see my life as a sober person.

I do it EVERY DAMN TIME I start a “diet” or “fitness program” and I start moaning about how I’m depriving myself and what a good person I am and look at everything I do and so I deserve those 12 cookies in the pantry.  Yeah…how’s THAT working for ya?  At least now I think I’ve finally come to a healthier way of thinking because I’m not on any diet or prescribed fitness program – I’m just eating less and moving more.  Revolutionary I know but that’s how I roll.

Now I find myself in that same place about therapy.  I see “Joe” about every two weeks and every fucking time, about 2 days prior to the appointment, I get a case of whatever the heck this is.

Head:  “I don’t really need therapy.  I’ve very self-aware.  I’m wasting time and money on this.”

Heart:  “Really?  Is that why every time you tackle a difficult subject you go home and eat your weight in chocolate?”

Head:  “Shut up and go back to keeping me alive.  What do you know about it?  I’ve got gobs of books on the subject and I’ve tackled my addictions in one form or another so there’s nothing left to do.  I have a husband with whom I share everything and lots of people who love me.”

Heart:  “Is that so?  Then why does it still feel like work for you to avoid eating emotionally?  Why do you have a tendency to do things addictively?  Why do you have these manic phases in your life (however mild)?  And why in the world do you still clench your jaw so hard at night that your teeth actually hurt in the morning?”

Head:  “Well…um…”

Heart:  “And what about these two words….empty nesting?”

Head:  “Wait right there!  That’s hitting a little below the belt don’t you think?  I mean, what mother hasn’t grappled with empty nesting?  It’s hard!”

Heart:  “Okay – forget that for a moment.  Do me a favor.  Go get a recent picture of yourself.  How about the headshot you just had done for work by a professional.  When you look at that picture, what is the first thing that comes to mind?  Is it a nice comment?  Do you like her yet?  And how do you feel about where your career is right now?”

Head:  *crickets*

Heart:  “Go to the appointment.”

Head:  “Okay…”

I realize it’s a natural tendency to shy away from things that are hard.  The vast majority of the time I just lower my bull-head and power through yelling, “When the going gets tough the tough get going!”  But when shit is gettin’ real like it is now and the work I’m doing is actually going to change who I am, well…

I guess I get scared.

And that’s when I want to back away.

The times I’ve given in and given up the immediate feeling of relief after making the decision is palpable.  I go and buy the cigarettes or wine or chocolate and commence the relapse.  But that feeling of relief soon sours and before I know it, I’m right back at the beginning – back at day one, square one, the starting gate.

Needless to say I’m not going to give up on this therapy thing.  Mainly because every other time I’ve felt this way and given in it left me feeling like shit.

And every other time I’ve felt this way and, eventually, succeeded it has changed my life in all kinds of amazing ways.

Well when I put it like that, it’s kind of no brainer don’t you think?

Namaste

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A Dream is a Wish Your Heart Makes

I went to see Cinderella in the theater on Thursday evening with a coworker (we’re both Disney fans freaks) and it was amazing.  It definitely did not disappoint and was a delight.  I highly recommend it.

While we were waiting for the show to start something really weird happened.  This particular theater is one of those dinner and a movie places where you can get dinner right at your seat and they serve a full bar.  We were sitting there and my coworker and her friend were, of course, surfing Facebook and Instagram.  Since I’m on a 30 day hiatus from social media I was just sitting there.  No big deal right?

Wrong.  Not only did I find it difficult to stay away from Facebook (sad in my estimation) but I wanted a drink in a way I haven’t in a very long time.  It was actually uncomfortable.  To be totally honest, the thought had been in my head the whole day because this theater has a nightclub vibe and sits smack dab in the middle of several other nightclubs and restaurants.  Thoughts like, “Wow it would be nice to go out and have a drink with these ladies.”  Funny thing is…they don’t even drink so, as usual, it was all about me.  I also came to the realization that social media had become just another way for me to escape, another obsession, another addiction.

Well crap, 30 days may not be enough – but it’s a start.

As far as the drinking goes, this particular craving bothered the living shit out of me because it was so strong and so damn uncomfortable.  I thought worried about it a lot on Friday, discussed with the hubs and decided I would post about it as soon as I had time.

Then on Saturday I went to the grocery store – where they sell wine.

We have a new Harris Teeter grocery store in our area which is really close to my house and has been highly anticipated.  (You know you’re old when you get this excited about the opening of a new grocery store…but in my defense, there’s a Starbucks in the store!  A Starbucks people!  Close to my house!  On my way to work!  Just sayin’.)  Harris Teeter stores are local favorites because they provide an extra level of customer service, are clean and bright and upscale and have a lot of fancy dancy food items you may not be able to find elsewhere.  Of courses most of the prices reflect all of that but since I don’t do most of the shopping – I don’t really care.

So after my annual mammogram* I stopped by to pick up the makings of my chicken noodle soup since it was rainy and cold and perfect for chicken noodle.  Harris Teeter has always had a beautiful wine aisle done all in faux dark wood and low lighting and a 5% discount on purchases of six bottles or more – all of which sent me there on a daily basis in my drinking days.  Since quitting however, I haven’t really thought about the aisle.  I just don’t go down it when shopping and that’s that.

Until yesterday.

Whether because of my craving on Thursday or because the store was new, this time when I passed by the aisle I glanced over and really checked it out.  As I looked at all of the shiny bottles with their red and gold (and some pink…yuck) elixirs, I stopped to really take it all in and examine how it made me feel.  I guess I wanted to see if I was still craving the wine.

Fortunately I did not feel the craving.  What I felt was sadness.  I felt the overwhelming feelings of sadness and despair.  I felt like to go into that aisle would take me into a dark hole for which there is no return.  I flashed back on so many Saturdays that I thought would be filled with fun that ended up anything but.  I remembered standing in an aisle very similar to this one wondering if I would be able to stop before I got drunk – and knowing I wouldn’t.  I thought about all those late nights, alone with my huge glass of wine when I cried because I knew I was too far gone and didn’t know how to make my life better.

Tears sprang to my eyes and a shudder passed through my body.  I stopped and closed my eyes and said a quick prayer – “Lord – thank you for removing me from the hell that I was in.  Thank you for giving me the courage to stay away from this aisle and turn my life around.  Thank you for happiness far greater than I ever knew.  Thank you for loving me enough to stay with me even in my darkest days and hearing the dream that was in my heart.”

It took awhile to shake the uglies (it was raining and gloomy which didn’t help) but later I was able to find my peace and to sleep the deep and satisfying sleep of the sober people.

Thank God.  No seriously…thank GOD.

Namaste

*Ladies consider this my personal PSA.  Get the ta-ta’s squished at least once a year.  It’s a small price to pay for the peace of mind that a clear exam gives you and the absolute best way to catch anything that might be in there early enough to save your life.  

A dream is a wish your heart makes
When you’re fast asleep
In dreams you will lose your heartache
Whatever you wish for you keep

Have faith in your dreams and someday
Your rainbow will come smiling through
No matter how your heart is grieving
If you keep on believing
the dream that you wish will come true

A dream is a wish your heart makes
When you’re feeling small
Alone in the night you whisper

Thinking no one can hear you at all
You wake with the morning sunlight
To find fortune that is smiling on you

Don’t let your heart be filled with sorrow
For all you know tomorrow
The dream that you wish will come true

When you can dream then you can start
A dream is a wish you make with your heart
When you can dream then you can start
A dream is a wish you make with your heart

A dream is a wish your heart makes
When you’re fast asleep
In dreams you will loose your heartache
Whatever you wish for you keep

You wake with the morning sunlight
To find fortune that is smiling on you
Don’t let your heart be filled with sorrow
For all you know tomorrow

The dream that you wish will come true
No matter how your heart is grieving
If you keep on believing
The dream that you wish will come true

When you can dream then you can start
A dream is a wish you make with your heart
When you can dream then you can start
A dream is a wish you make with your heart

When you can dream then you can start
A dream is a wish you make with your heart

SONGWRITERS
AL HOFFMAN, JERRY LIVINGSTON, MACK DAVID

PUBLISHED BY
LYRICS © WALT DISNEY MUSIC PUBLISHING COMPANY

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54 at 54 Weekly Update – Week 8

Walking

First, and most importantly, today I am wearing a pair of jeans that, two weeks ago, were incredibly uncomfortable.  So much so that I had to wear a big flowing top and do the “rubber band trick” on the button.  (You know what that is right?  It’s when you loop a rubber band through the button-hole of your pants and then around the button itself.  Depending on the rubber band it can give you an extra 1/2″ to 1″.  Those rubber bands that come on broccoli at the supermarket are perfect for this.)  Today they are not only comfortable but a little baggy.  Yesterday I had to tighten my belt twice because the pants I was wearing were threatening to leave my body – and not in a good way.

I’ve also started working out in…wait for it…the morning.  GASP!  I know…I’ve tried before and given up but the fact that this treadmill is right in my bedroom and that basically all I have to do is put on a bra and shoes is definitely a bonus.  Plus, I just get home too late at night to do the nightly workout that’s been my staple all of my adult life.

But things change.

When I was 16 I wanted to take off some weight (well – since puberty I’ve wanted to “take off some weight”) so I bought a record album of exercises that came with a wall chart so you could see how to do them (yes…I’m old…don’t judge).  I fell in love with it.  Over the years that morphed into gyms and aerobics classes (Jazzercise anyone?) and personal trainers and lots and lots of VHS tapes and then later, DVD’s.  My library was extensive and for a while I belonged to a kind of “club” where you could trade videos you’d grown tired of or that were not a good fit for you.  Working out at home to videos with Kathy Smith, Karen Voight and Petra Kolber (to name a few) became my fitness routine and lasted for about 20 years.

After I got sober and started thinking about getting back into shape (one other than the one I’m currently in) I dusted off those old tapes and DVD’s and got to work.  The problem was that where they once energized me and made me happy, they now bored me and made me feel bad about myself.  So I stopped using them and started my search for my next fitness path.

One thing that has never changed in all my life is that I love to walk.  I will walk anywhere for ridiculous amounts of time.  My normal gait is at about 2.7 mph (yeah…it’s hard for people to keep up) but I’ve been known to walk as fast as 4.2 mph if I’m really pushing it.  I prefer walking outside but when I’m out there I tend to walk slower and just enjoy the outdoors.  I can listen to some “beat” music and match the pace – but for me, having earbuds in takes the joy out of my walk.  (Plus if I’m in an unfamiliar city it’s dangerous because I need to be aware of my surroundings at all times…you can take the girl out of the hood but you can’t take the hood out of the girl.)

Which is why this treadmill is such a godsend.  Last weekend, after my run-in with my compassionate boss (yes…that WAS sarcasm) I feeling pretty low so I did what I love to do – I walked.  First on the treadmill and then outside with the dogs.  Saturday and Sunday I exercised self-care and just…walked.  I didn’t try to run or match any pace or even care if I sweat.  I just moved my feet.

And it was glorious.

So this week I’ve been getting up early and walking first thing in the morning which sets the “pace” (HA!) for my day.  I’ve decided that if I never learn to run that’s okay…I can walk.  If I never run another race (5K, 4-miler, half marathon) that’s okay…I can walk it.  If I never fire up my c25K app again that’s okay…I can walk while binge watching TV series and let the iFit application on my treadmill do the work (and make ME work in the process).

I’m happy with this program.  I logged food all week and did pretty damn well I think.  I walked and walked and walked…with my own unique brand of quiet determination.

And that is perfectly imperfect…and just enough.

Stats:  74, 442 steps for 30.9 miles – 10,635 daily average steps – 4.41 daily average miles.

Namaste

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Examining My Own Imperfections

You know…I had this whole post lined up (in my head of course) about what my boss’ comment did to me and how I was feeling about life and my lack of confidence and a bunch of other shit that just added up to a poor me party.  Then I started to get on my own nerves so I stopped thinking about it and moved the hell on.

I’m taking an online class that goes with Brene’ Brown’s book, “The Gift of Imperfection”.  It was recommended to me by Viv over at Grief Happens.  I’ve been trying to read that damn book since someone else (sorry, I can’t remember who) recommended it to me years ago but I keep getting bored and putting it down.  I’m certain that this class is just what I need to get me through the book and, more importantly, provide me with some retention and life tools.

Part of the work in Lesson 1 involved figuring out who in your life are your “go to” people.  In whom do you confide when the shit hits the fan and you’re left embarrassed and ashamed.  Just anybody can’t be on this list.  It has to be someone who will call you on your bullshit (in a compassionate way) and just be there for you…no judgment…just love and connection.  Brene’ says that if you have one or two people like this in your life you are very lucky.

As I sat and thought, I realized that my inability to trust has severely limited my connection to people.  I mean I knew this but I don’t think I really knew this.  It was like a lightening bolt struck me in the middle of the heart when, as I was working, I came to this conclusion.  If you had asked before the lesson, I would have said I had lots of people who love and care for me to put on the list…and that is true.  But this particular list calls for people you trust to hold your deepest, darkest secrets and still love you anyway.  So mine is short – but powerful.

  • My husband.
  • My stepdaughter.
  • My best friend.

These are the people I trust with my heart, my soul, my secrets and my shame.  They are my tribe.  My true north.

I also added my therapist to the list.  I think the reason therapists exist is a lack of these kinds of relationships in our lives.  I used to say that people didn’t need therapists if they had a best friend.  I was so wrong.  Not all besties can be on this list.  I have a lot of very close friends who didn’t make the cut.  Doesn’t mean they aren’t my friends and that we don’t love each other – it just means I don’t trust them to hold my heart in their hands and not break it…even just a little.

And finally I added this blog.  This blog has been and remains privy to everything that is me…warts and all.  It holds my secrets, my shame, my feelings, my life.  I couldn’t walk away now if I tried.  I need to write here like I need to breathe.

So guess what you guys?  This blogosphere made the cut too.  All of you readers who hold me up and push me forward and call me on my bullshit when required.  You are on my list for as long as you choose to read and comment.  No judgments – just unconditional support and love.

I guess that makes me very, very lucky.

Namaste

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I Choose to Wear It

I promise to update you all on my weekend meltdown and recovery in my post tomorrow but today, I want to tell you about an email I received from a really cool organization.

Last week I received an email from Lauren regarding an organization called 24ave.com.  Lauren’s email read in part,

24ave.com is about living recovery out loud.  As you can see from the latest addition to their line of t-shirts, it’s now possible to state if you’re a “Sober Sister”, a “Recovery Rebel” or just make the statement that “Sobriety Kicks Ass”, these shirts have you covered.  They have a full lifestyle line, ranging from jewelry, apparel and home décor…”

Those of you who’ve been hanging with me for awhile know that I’m a firm believer in shouting my sobriety and recovery from the rooftops.  I completely support and respect all of AA’s tenets and would never “out” anyone who prefers to remain anonymous but for me, I need to rid myself of all the shame in my life and my battle with alcohol and addiction sits at the top of the hit parade.  The way I choose to do that is to speak my truth whenever possible.

Or should I say wear my truth.

I went to their site immediately and was thrilled to see all of the options.  Right away I ordered this “Sober Sisters” t-shirt and I think I’m going to need the “Progress NOT Perfection” one as well.

sisterpink_large

And if the merchandise isn’t enough to impress you, the staff, designers, photographers and writers are all in recovery.  THAT rocked my socks off.  24ave.com is, apparently, the real deal.

If you’re interested in wearing your truth go out and take a look.  They have pillows, apparel for men and women, scarves, hats and some really cool jewelry.  I told Lauren I’d post about the site after I’d gone out and had a look and in a subsequent email, she offered to send me any of the shirts in my size (which was so sweet) but it was too late…I had already ordered one.

I get excited about shit sometime yo.

Namaste

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