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Spirituality = Reality

Discussion in 'Freedom from Hell ~ Staying Clean~' started by gettingbetter, Dec 5, 2008.

  1. gettingbetter

    gettingbetter Well-Known Member

    "So long, Charlie. The light's green."
    - My grandmother to my biological grandfather in 1949. He complained that he didn't want the responsibility of raising my mother. She told him to leave, and he never came back.

    Letting Go, Part One

    When I visit my brother, sister-in-law, niece, and nephew every month or couple weeks, I usually spend some time furtively watching the man that was once the little boy beside me. I try not to show him I'm observing.

    He cuts up sandwiches for my nephew into little PBJ bites with no crust. He comforts and cuddles my niece when she gets snippy. He chuckles when my sister-in-law bitches and gives her crap right back. He sings dorky songs and makes faces. He shovels snow and cleans the basement. He shows me the countless videos of my niece and nephew and I watch the sting of tears light up his eyes while laughter covers his face.

    My niece snuggles next to me with books and books and books that I have bought her. We puzzle through. My nephew books through the room, falls down. "I'm OKAY!" he yells, gets back up, and keeps running. Then he attacks me, my niece Hayden giggles and slaps, and we have an all-out roaring contest. Then it's time to play Auntie Danielle Monster, in which I am a Very Scary Monster that chases them throughout the house and into the yard. You can get real creative with the Auntie Danielle Monster game if you so desire. I usually do.

    The brother I see is such a far cry from the brother I knew growing up that I am in awe. I don't understand the transformation from the little boy who cowered, crying, from my father as my father verbally abused him. I don't understand how the passive teenager I knew grew into a man that anyone would be proud to call brother. I'm not sure how our distant and combative relationship changed when we became adults, but I do know that since I got sober and have spent the five, six years now visiting them so regularly, that the four of them are my family.

    "Auntie Danielle, come sit on the loveseat with us," my sister-in-law said last year. My brother, she, and my niece were there together and I crammed in. We looked on the computer for something, I don't remember what. What I do remember is the closeness. The intimacy and the love.

    It is such an alien concept for me, the idea of a family holding love and positivity and easy fluid energy. I have always hid from it.

    I wondered as I started writing this how we came out of the same background and he took such a different path than me, and how he was able. Then as I was writing I realized that love saved him.

    "We love having you here," my sister-in-law texted me after Christmas Eve.

    "I love being there," I texted back.

    "I hated the movie This Is 40," my brother said, a couple months back. "All that yelling and screaming and s--t. I had enough of that growing up." He shoots me a sideways look and I stare back: it is unusual for him to ever, ever mention anything about our past.

    I need to get back down there as soon as possible.

    (I'm going through an experience and coming up on three years sober. Hope you don't mind if I revitalize this old thread. Feels like a dam breaking to start writing again.)
    Fox face likes this.
  2. Bonita

    Bonita Well-Known Member

    Loved reading it. I love my family, even my mother who in mid 80's still struggles with addiction. I also wonder how my siblings didn't take same path as I did. It's like it was just part of a script that played out. I, playing the lost junkie who manipulated all that allowed. My siblings playing role that over came the obstacles and just made different choices. Look forward to reading more.
  3. teach07

    teach07 Well-Known Member

    Something told me to check out ODR today. Its been a long time......always love reading your thread SST.......glad things are going well and an early congrats on 3 years!!!!!!!!
  4. guinevere64

    guinevere64 Well-Known Member

    Hey Dani... so let's hear some more, yeah? congratulations on 3 years. xx /G
  5. gettingbetter

    gettingbetter Well-Known Member

    Four years. Acceptance. Namaste. You can do it!
  6. AumuA

    AumuA Well-Known Member

    Right on. Complete abstinence? It gets really, really freakin awesome doesn't it? Who would have thought..
  7. gettingbetter

    gettingbetter Well-Known Member

    Yes, complete abstinence. I still struggle with smoking on and off. Several at night right now. Little by slowly ...
  8. channah

    channah Well-Known Member

    DANIELLE! I have no idea what prompted me to come here today, just was driven to it and alas, here is a post from you. Nice to see you, sweets. Congratulations on 4 years. Very cool. Keep rocking it.
    gettingbetter likes this.
  9. MemoryGap

    MemoryGap Active Member

    abstinence. i would like to try that.
    gettingbetter likes this.
  10. AumuA

    AumuA Well-Known Member

    Yeah, if you're reading this, you should try it! Because regardless of whether drug x was ever your problem, why keep replaying an old tape? We've been there, we've done that. There's nothing more that any drug has to teach us. It's just life itself now.

    Smoking, eh. The thing is, you can't get fucked up on cigarettes. They will still kill you though. Still smoking, Danielle? Here's a picture I made.


    Edit: Ya figures it wouldn't work. Can we go back to vbulliten now?
    Here it is, though. http://i.imgur.com/qP0W2ju.gif
    Last edited: Dec 30, 2015
    gettingbetter likes this.
  11. gettingbetter

    gettingbetter Well-Known Member

    I quit. November 27. Cold turkey. My cat, Hope, died on December 3 after 19 and a half years with me. I had an incredibly non-alcoholic thought as I was driving home from the vet with her, the day before: the thought was "Hope is going to die whether or not you smoke a cigarette." I was six days in and tempted to buy a pack. I use them to deal with emotions.

    At any rate the truth of that statement hit me like a ton of bricks and even though alcoholics don't think that way I think I have enough normalcy and perspective in sobriety now to just know that I don't need the butts anymore. So it's over a month without cigarettes, but like everything else, one day at a time.

    I'm coming up on five years sober. January 13. God willing. Been waiting for this shit for a long time.

    I start an MFA program next week and the board granted me sabbatical for next school year to write the book I'm doing for the MFA.

    It is truly amazing what you can accomplish when you put spiritual principles first.

    And oh yeah I'm a yoga instructor now. That thought would have been hilarious to me when I started my journey here. Who knew.

    Love you guys.

    p.s. that picture is funny, J. :) :) :)
    AumuA likes this.
  12. AumuA

    AumuA Well-Known Member

    Yeah it's just.. something I made for another site.

    I'm very sorry to hear about your kitty. I don't know how I would react if something happened to Ivy. I'm really close to that animal. You seemed to take it in stride.

    Well I just want to congratulate you on your accomplishments, and your sobriety or whatever you 'alcoholics' call it haha. It's ok, you're not the only addict who hides out in AA. :)

    Quitting smoking is great, it's the next right thing. I got 3+ years and it's easy now. Actually I miss them occasionally. I probably could use them to help socialize in my new area.. hey wait a minute.

    Can't wait to read your book, is ODR in it? That would be cool.
    Last edited: Jan 2, 2016
  13. gettingbetter

    gettingbetter Well-Known Member

    Of course ODR is in it (I'm here to scavenge old posts now actually). I wouldn't have anything if it weren't for this board. I am convinced of that.

    Stop giving me crap about being in AA. I'm home and it's all the same deal anyway. I have five years this week so you have to be nice to me. ;)

    I did NOT take Hope dying in stride. I had her for 19 and a half years and she was the only thing I had. I was a desperate, sobbing, inconsolable wreck for two weeks and I had to go to my old therapist and everything. But like they say in Life of Pi "all of life is an exercise in letting go" and even though most things I let go of have claw marks on it ... the older we get the more we have to come to terms with the cycles of change. I practice Wicca now. It helps. I cast spells and chant and meditate.

    It helps that Ms. Hope's ashes are part of my meditation altar now. The day I got her ashes I kept taking the little baggie out of the urn and turning it over in my hands until the bag broke a little and I got Hope Dust on my hands. I shivered because I could almost feel her soul merging with mine, on my hands, in my heart.

    I miss the everloving fuck out of that cat and I never realized how many of my actions each day accommodated hers. That said. Life goes on.

    You know?

    How the hell are you?
    AumuA likes this.
  14. AumuA

    AumuA Well-Known Member

    You know the thought had crossed my mind that I was being pushy. So I take it back, unequivocally.

    I truly sympathize with your feelings of loosing your friend. I got a new sponsor recently who's got quite a bit of time and he told me some things about milestones.

    I'm good. Starting my spring semester. Just a little Relativity and Quantum Physics, Theoretical Mechanics, Electricity and Magnetism, and Computational Physics. I'm also taking a civic engagement course where I'm going to be working with an outside organization, in a service capacity, possibly with refugees. Expanding my service experience beyond the directly recovery related kind of thing.
    Last edited: Jan 16, 2016
  15. gettingbetter

    gettingbetter Well-Known Member

  16. AumuA

    AumuA Well-Known Member

    Yeah, fuck kratom. (but honestly fuck the war on drugs too).

    One thing's for sure, there's going to be a lot of very unhappy addicts if this goes into effect.
  17. gettingbetter

    gettingbetter Well-Known Member

    War on drugs aside, political stances aside, whatnot, wherenot, willnot - I am just thrilled to be legitimized, even if it has to be by the government. Oh the irony. I felt like such a jackass getting addicted to that crap and trying to explain it to all the "real" opiate users. I was always like "hey real opiate users, this is real shit, and I know because I used to be a real opiate user, and trust me, this shit is the real deal".

    It already has gone into effect. The vendors are all shutting down. I cannot help feeling somewhat triumphant at their loss. Ego. What a bitch. I am sorry for those still sick and suffering.

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