Step 2 “Came to believe” that a power greater than our self could restore us to sanity…………


I loved this step, when I first came into AA, this step was the best for me. The first time I read it, I loved it! it was a relief! I was so insane in my own head that I had welcomed a power greater than myself to restore me to sanity and this step to me was the answers to my craziness in my head. Oh to be able to be sane! to not have to drink again! to have a calmness! and serenity! to me I was very happy when reading this step on the wall. Now was it as easy as I thought as first? No because they started with the “God” stuff “oh no” please don’t do this too me! I just can’t believe something I can’t prove or see “really” is this chick/guy crazy. I don’t know about your God but my God has this sick sense of humor and well he/she can keep it!

I was about 6 months sober and I went to see the play Bill & Dr. Bob at a local theater here where I live, my sponsor came with me and I know I had already read this part in a recovery book, but there was something about that play that really made sense. It was the part where Ebby sits down and tells Bill W. that he has found a solution, he has found religion and of course Bill is thinking the same thing I am and Bill says basically I don’t want any thing to do with that nonsense and Ebby looked at him and said well if you don’t believe in God can you at least believe that you are not God! for some reason it clicked at that point! See in my opinion a lot of people in AA give “God” a bad name they tend to push this concept and there are a lot that don’t but it’s a real turn off for a lot of people to have to believe in something that they find so hard to believe in, but what you have to realize is that you are not “God”, life is going to go the way it’s going to go, you are not going to be able to control every thing in your world it’s just the way it is and I like to think of it like the universe aligns it self, things work out the way they are meant too, if you are a good person good things come back to you eventually, every trial and error in life is a learning and growing process if we didn’t have bad times how would we know how to appreciate the good times. I find my God in the rooms of AA God talks through them in a sense, I have asked for many things from God some I have gotten and when I did get it I wish I hadn’t even asked, like Garth Brooks says, some of God’s greatest gifts are unanswered prayers how true that is.

I just came across a card that my mother sent me when I was trying to get pregnant with my daughter and not succeeding  it was one of those “God” cards, my mom was Catholic and had a lot of faith at times, but there is something she wrote and I’ve read this card several times over the years since she is gone but for some reason this last time made more sense to me, she wrote to me in caps DO NOT FORSAKE OUR HOLY FATHER HE IS LISTENING TO YOU. Love Mother. Perhaps it has been my ego that has stood in my own way, my husband has always told me I am my own worst enemy and this is true, perhaps this “God” thing is more powerful than I could ever realize? I really don’t know, but what I do know is that when I pray for help, patience, tolerance to handle any situation in my life today it helps me through and if that’s all religion is aside from helping others than what the hell is wrong with me!  it’s not the big deal I’ve been making it out to be. I am learning to be kinder to myself in my sobriety they say it’s progress not perfection. I am keeping an open mind, I hope you will too.

Fondly,

Diane

http://www.sobermoms.com

Additional readings for step 2 in the big book 45-57; 9-16; 567-568

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Recovery Facilities


To find recovery facilities visit http://www.sobermoms.com click the links on the left hand side of the page to find one near you……..

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4 years sober and my reflections………..


This month I celebrated 4 years of sobriety. I can remember first walking into the rooms of AA and saying OMG this is going to be a long road, the time seemed to stand still………. I had never been so scared in my life. The steps alone were enough to make me walk away the first time, but things just got worse and I just didn’t have any choices any longer, I either had to keep going into the depths of insanity or take the suggestions that AA was proposing, now remember my mom and my older brother went through the doors of AA and the disease killed them both. I wasn’t a big believer of it working, my husband was also a skeptic and was very upfront when I said I needed to do something, he said you know those things don’t work! a skeptic he is no more! He tells me I am his hero, a very high compliment coming from my husband. So I often wonder what set me apart from the people that are successful with AA and those that aren’t? Just a footnote on being successful, I know that at any given time I am an arms length at taking a drink, no one is immune no matter how long your sober.

When I first got sober I did everything I was told, I got a sponsor, I went to 90 meetings in 90 days, some times 2-3 times a day, I met with my sponsor once a week, I did service work and built a wonderful support group so that when things went bad I would have those people to support me and let me tell you when things go bad, you really see who is working a program and who is there for you.  I have a handful of people from the meetings that attended my brothers’ service and his funeral for two days those people just sat there the whole time and never missed a beat! Along with my sponsor who I am also grateful for constantly being at my side. I will always be grateful for those few people that were there for me at that time, just there presence was a blessing.

When I was sober a year a girl told me if I wanted to stay sober I had better get a sponsee of course I was scared to death, a girl had asked me when I was sober around 9 months and I turned her down, I was scared and didn’t think I could offer her anything, what I realized is that sponsoring other women is what does keep you sober you have to give away what so freely is given to you. I went back to that girl and asked her if she still needed a sponsor and thank god she said she did! her and I were put together by our mother’s in heaven, I truly believe this, we have similar backgrounds and upbringing and she is like the little sister I always wanted, just alone the fact that I would never want to disappoint her thinking of her at times has kept me from drinking at moments, today I can play the tape and realize that drinking will never solve any problems! I can remember my mom saying to me, Diane you will never find any answers in a bottle! you know that I know that more than anyone! I can still see her face to this day saying that to me, how right she was about a lot of things……..

So back to my reflections, I am not big on the God thing, call me a stubborn x drunk, I am a logical person and unless I can see something or touch it, it’s too far fetched to really believe but over the years I have seen some real miracles, and the first being my desire to stop drinking.  I drank for 30 years and didn’t know how I would ever stop, I call that one of my first spiritual awaking’s, and do I know for sure if there is a god? no I don’t know one way or another.  I have seen people in the program face things that I never thought would be possible to face sober. I have not only seen people be diagnosis with cancer and given 6 months to a year to live but actually beat it! and continue on with their life’s.  People lose people all the time, their children get hooked on booze or drugs so many bad things happen in life that are unfair, but people stay sober, no matter what they don’t pick up a drink because it’s that first drink that will get you drunk, maybe not that day or month, but inevitably sooner or later it will take you back to right where you left off.  Today I am grateful for Alcoholics Anonymous and for the people that have taken me through my journey thus far……

I visited the cemetery yesterday, and while I was looking at the plaques on the wall I realized that my mother died at 61, my oldest brother 46 and my other brother just shy of 52. I wondered how the hell such a promising family could end up like this? and the only answer I could come up with was alcohol! A very sad hard fact to accept some days, and I suppose my strengths have taught me through their weaknesses. Tonight I will receive my 4th year medallion at my home group meeting and I will honor my family. May they all rest in peace, for I know how hard they all struggled.

Fondly, Diane

http://www.sobermoms.com

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Step 1 “We” admitted we were powerless over alcohol – that our lives had become unmanageable!


As part of my recovery I am kicking off the new year with blogging the steps, one per month for the next 12 months.

Ah, good ole step 1. This step, I believe is the MOST IMPORTANT step.You do not have to get any of the other steps right but this one! because if you miss this step, well than you are sure to relapse. If you can’t admit 100% with every fiber of your being  that your an alcoholic, then please try some controlled drinking as they suggest in the Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous. (Chapter 3. pages 30-32)

Now just so we are clear, I am not trying in anyway to push the Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous on any one. I know that a lot of people despise this group, they think they are a cult and on and on and on, but I can tell you one thing;  my mother and my oldest brother walked into the rooms of Alcoholics Anonymous and wound up dying because they didn’t take the suggestions or the program serious. When I first walked into the rooms, I also didn’t take the suggestions and inevitably found my self drunk again from Christmas eve right up until New Year’s day. What I am saying is give it a try, be open minded and surround yourself with the winners and I promise, you will be a winner also.  Do I agree with what everyone says and does in AA?  “hell” no! What I did and still do today, is take the best and leave the rest.  The AA book says that their hats are off to anyone that can over come this great obsession with alcohol without AA and I feel the same, some people do just quit  or find the Lord.  I have seen it, it does happen! although I have not seen a lot of it. My blog is to help Mom’s get or stay sober, it’s a place to vent and not for anyone to judge, so what ever works for you is what I feel you should do. I try and practice love and tolerance at all times and if you share on my blog I expect the same from you! this is not a forum for debate, it is a support site and I only can tell you what worked for me.

For years I knew I was powerless over alcohol towards the end my powerlessness became drinking at 9 am, but my life wasn’t unmanageable! So I thought! I was a very high functioning alcoholic up until the end. I really can’t say how long I really really knew that I was a drunk. I believe at first it was just a way of life because it’s the way I was brought up, but as I got older when ever alcoholism would be discussed either on the T.V or by various people I can always remember feeling like I had to leave the room or shut off  the T.V. whatever or whoever was talking about it. I know around my 30’s I can remember thinking other people don’t drink the way I do. I also remember towards the end of my drinking I couldn’t even watch the series Intervention, it hit way too close to home. Now it’s one of my favorite shows. It keeps it real for me.

I felt my life wasn’t unmanageable because I had a nice home, money to burn, a good marriage, a child that I was able to stay home with and never got any DUI’s, today I know that if I ever relapse all of those “yet’s” that didn’t happen are just waiting right there for me. It wasn’t until I did my fourth step that I realized how unmanageable my life really was. Most people by the time they give up drinking have hit rock bottom they have nothing left, or they have lost their family, or have several DUI, and realize right away that their life is unmanageable.

So if your thinking your an alcoholic but your not really sure, go on line there are several quiz’s to help you, pick up the AA Big Book or read it on line, all you have to do is read the Doctor’s Opinion, Bill’s Story and some of the personal stories in the back, and if you find yourself relating to 90-99% of those stories in one way or another, it may be time to admit that you are an alcoholic. Is it the end of the world? No! let me repeat it is NOT the end of the world! Our society has come a long way in accepting this disease and still has a long way to go. I see a lot of young people in AA. Of course I am in Florida and we are ranked something like the 3rd or 4th in the USA for recovery, but when I see some one young in AA I always feel so happy for them, if they can stay sober they will live a much better life then they could have ever imagined.

If you have decided that you are an alcoholic and want to be a member of AA, just find a local meeting in your area and start attending the meetings, when I first got sober I went to 3 meetings a day for over 6 months, of course I live in one of the recovery capitols of the US you may not have as many meetings in your area. The suggestion is 90 meetings in 90 days. Let others know you are new they will help, I can’t promise too many things but I can promise that.

I hope you enjoyed this step? It’s not a very long one, but it’s a huge concept and only you can decide for yourself if you are an alcoholic or not? I hope it gave you a bit of knowledge and if your recovering or if you have years of sobriety I hope it gave you some memories of when you first got sober. I welcome any suggestions, comments, input as to what worked for other Mom’s, just remember there is no one right way and please practice love and tolerance at all times.

I remember a man telling me, us AA people are not so glum! frankly I never thought that they were I always thought “where could you go and have a few laughs, feel better for a donation of a buck in a hour”. I’ve spent thousands on a shrinks over the years and found out  from AA that drinking was just a symptom of my underlying problems…………

Sincerely,

Diane                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               http://www.sobermoms.com

Reading for Step 1 in the A.A. Big Book of Alcoholic’s Anonymous is The Doctor’s Opinion and Chapter 3: More about Alcoholism

If you are looking for recovery centers, visit my website http://www.sobermoms.com

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Happy New Year Resolution… What is Yours?


As I sit and reflect on the past year, I have come to a few conclusions the first is that there is always always always something to be thankful for!

I lost my brother this year the third in my immediate family within 9 year span.  It has been extra difficult due to the fact that he was paralyzed for 24 years and that alone had weighed heavy on my heart for years, however he was my best friend and I really didn’t realize this until he was gone. As hard it was taking care of him I really miss doing it. My life feels empty and lost without him, I took it for granted that he would always be around and when he had a brain aneurysm in June it was like God had taken my best friend away. I have realized to never take anyone you love for granted! I am still in the process of forgiving myself for being so selfish, see I am a very good alcoholic and it’s always about me! the only difference with being sober today is that I can recognize that and work on it, it’s progress not perfection!  So with going though my depression for the last 7 months and gaining 50 lbs because I quit smoking after my brother died, I remember promising my Mom 9 years ago before she died that I would quit, it was also a motivator for me and with 4 years of sobriety it was time to give up that daemon too, my husband says that I am his hero which is a really wonderful compliment, he has said I’ve conquered things that he never thought would have been possible. I have given him hope that it can be done, that alone is huge!

So when I sit in “my” misery this past year, I think of Whitney Houston and how her daughter is so messed up now without her Mom, how her Mom continued to do drugs and died so young, and I totally get it! once your hooked on this stuff no matter if it’s drugs or booze it sucks the life out of you. I really am not sure to this day what made me sober up, I know various things did when I look back, I pray for Whitney’s daughter! and am always grateful that I am sober.

I also think back at what happened in my child hood home town of New Jersey with Hurricane Sandy, never have I ever witnessed so much devastation and destruction! I’ve lost a lot but I have a roof over my head, food and I can pay the bills. Then the final straw Sandy Hook Elementary School……How do you pick up the pieces after you lose a child, I often wonder how my Dad goes on after burying two sons, and his wife of 45 years, as our President summed it up, life does go on even in the darkest days… it’s just not fair, your children are suppose to bury you.

My resolution for this year is one thing and one thing only!  For “me” to get out of my self and help other people, this always seemed to be the best medicine to help me appreciate all the wonderful things I have, we have had a rough couple of years, but if I can put aside my selfishness I can ALWAYS, ALWAYS, ALWAYS find something to be grateful for.

God Bless everyone who follows my blog even the people that don’t, and have a Healthy and Happy New Year. I would love to hear your resolution, please join my blog and start off the New Year on a positive note, if you don’t wish to join please hit the like button. Thanks

Fondly,

Diane                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    www.sobermoms.com

 

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Sandy Hook Tragedy………


I am speechless by the senseless tragedy that took place today. When I am angry or sad I tend to want to write my thoughts down, it’s something that helps me sort out things. What can one say when something so senseless as this happens? Why? you ask yourself why? Apparently from what we know a 24 year old male came into this school and killed the principal and his Mom who was a teacher, along with 20 other children,and other adults, how could this young guy be so disturbed that he could do this, he also killed his brother back at their home in Newtown.  All I can say is that I hugged my daughter so hard that she asked me what was wrong, I did not share with her what happened I don’t ever want her to feel that this could happen to her going to school, her school is locked down, it’s so secure that you can’t get to the kids with out being registered, at first this made me feel weird but I really appreciate this today and understand why. We may never have any answers to this senseless tragedy especially since this cowardly young man took his own life.  What will the parents do who have lost their children, how do you put the pieces together, I’ve lost a lot of my family members and I can’t even imagine loosing my child! Most of the Christmas gifts have been brought for these children, the parents must be just devastated….. I don’t know whether to be angry or sad, all I know is that a nation mourns today and that speaks volumes in itself. God Bless all of the people that have been affected by this horrid tragedy!

Diane                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           http://www.sobermoms.com

The Holidays are here! Are you ready?


The holidays are here upon us again, if your not looking forward to them don’t despair they will be gone before you know it and you’ll have to think about taking off those extra pounds. Remember double up on your meetings, do service for others and contact this blog if you feel like drinking.

I check my mail constantly and if you want someone to talk to I am very happy to always help! Remember if they have a lot of meetings in your area, they may also have something that is called alcathon, they have meetings 24 hrs. a day for Christmas eve, Christmas day and New Year’s eve and day. Asking for some help and reaching out to other people, is a sure way staying sober this holiday season!

Fondly,

Diane                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          www.sobermoms.com