28 December 2016

"Inject Me Slowly, Truth"


WARNING: GRAPHIC LANGUAGE

It's been over two years (near the end of 2014) since I shared the following post with anyone. I was reviewing some of my older blog posts today and ran across it again. It had appeared then on various Facebook Group pages for alcoholics, addicts and others in recovery. No photograph accompanied my words at that time and some still took offense at my graphic language. I was asked to remove it, so I did.
"Emotion recollected in tranquility": I've decided to post it again, with a photograph this time.

"Slow the injection of truth. Insert the needle of truth into my vein, into my brain, slowly. First, hold the needle upright. Squeeze out any air. Leave only the clear, the liquid, the truth. Inject me slowly. I want to watch that crystal clarity enter my vein. The truth, too fast, could only scare me. Inject me slowly, or quickly watch me die."
*****

If anyone wants to know why I decided to post it again, I ask only that you read "The Tomb of the Anonymous Addict," linked here: https://niume.com/post/195573
The moral of the story (if I may borrow from the AIDS epidemic) is that SILENCE = DEATH.
End of story.
*****


*****
The passage above in quotation marks is excerpted from All Drinking Aside: The Destruction, Deconstruction & Reconstruction of an Alcoholic Animal, an Autobiographical Fiction by Jim Anders, linked here: http://amzn.to/1bX6JyO
Visit his Niume Recovery page here: https://niume.com/pages/profile/?userID=26056
& find his Recovery Tweets here: http://twitter.com/JimAnders4

26 December 2016

10 Recovery Tweets from August Remembered


Upon reviewing my blog at year's end, I noticed I had a little avalanche of well-liked Tweets scattered thereabouts.
Some I never actually put on Twitter. Others I expanded into snack-y chunks. The rest I'm cleaning off my August blog calendar to be replaced by this December's end post.
In no particular order of relevance: 

 1. This is your glass talking... "An empty glass told me that I had been drinking."

(After 50,000 drinks, they'd start talking to you, too, oh don't you know?)

 2. "When you stop drinking, you have to deal with this marvelous personality that started you drinking in the first place." - Jimmy Breslin

(This is one of 180 quotes by the famous, infamous and anonymous in my book*)

 3. I chain-smoked when I drank. Two Cycles of Addiction Have Been Broken.

(They go together like arsenic and cyanide, don't you think?)

 4. The Flow of Alcohol is Beaten by The Flow of Life. The River of Time is Slow & Deep.

(This one is my favorite today from this bunch of ten. It reflects where I'm at and what prolonged sobriety has brought my way.)

 5. "Worry is like a rocking chair. It gives you something to do, but it doesn't get you anywhere." - Anonymous

(Complaining, gossip and worry are three activities I attempt to side-step, but it's not easy. Taking action where possible and accepting what's not possible just about covers it!)

 6. "Sometimes a majority simply means that all the fools are on the same side." - Claude McDonald

(The majority of my friends were mere mortal social drinkers for most of the first decade of my drinking career. But don't worry, that changed over time. Drinking alone was the end of that inevitably long road!)

 7.Question for Today: What is the radioactive half-life of addiction?

(Yes, this is from my book. It occurred to me after a few months of not drinking because the after-effects of a lifetime of drinking subside so slowly. Actually, my alcoholism was more like not-at-all living, so speaking of a radioactive half-life of addiction explodes with irony for me)


 8."The deepest definition of youth is life as yet untouched by tragedy."
- Alfred North Whitehead

(Maybe I will change my name it Jim North Anders? I need a Recovery Compass to point me in the direction of continuing recovery. Let that dark place in which I once lived remain a fading memory, an old scar that is merely a reminder of days and years gone by.)


 9. "The chains of habit are too weak to be felt until they are too strong to be broken."
- Samuel Johnson

(So deeply profound is this statement that I am profoundly jealous. Wish I'd said that. Eighteenth Century, no less!)


10. I drank long enough and hard enough that eventually there was no bar big enough to hold my emptiness.

(Yes, I wrote this and No! It's not in my book. I'm still growing, moving forward. My Sober Life is a treasure trove of possibilities. Let me end here wishing everyone a Great Big Happy New Year!)
*****
#Alcoholism #Addiction #Recovery


*****
Most all of the Tweets in this Post have been excerpted from 
*All Drinking Aside: The Destruction, Deconstruction & Reconstruction of an Alcoholic Animal, an Autobiographical Fiction by Jim Anders, linked here: http://amzn.to/1bX6JyO
Visit his Niume Recovery page here: https://niume.com/pages/profile/?userID=26056
& find more of his Recovery Tweets here: http://twitter.com/JimAnders4



25 December 2016

1. Looking Outward... 2. Looking Forward... 3. (below)


1. "It is well to remember that the entire population of the universe, with one trifling exception, is composed of others."
- Andrew J. Holmes

2. "Morning Meditation: Don't burn bridges behind you: concentrate on building the bridge that is before you."

3. "Nothing Matters More Than That We Remain Sober Because When We Remain Sober Everything Matters More!"


https://www.facebook.com/244876772358470/videos/488176438028501/

(Please visit my Niume Recovery page here: https://niume.com/pages/profile/?userID=26056
& find some Recovery Tweets here: http://twitter.com/JimAnders4

19 December 2016

What is After "The Drinking Life"?*


(Unapologetically, I present a short & simple verse I wrote because when one has moved from a space of chaos to a place of tranquility, simplicity seems the order of the day.)

"The Drinking Life"

The Drinking Life
Evaporated me.
Each sip I took
Took some of me away.
Who could have guessed
One day I would be free?
I'm thankful for
This Sober Life today.
*****

#Alcoholism #Addiction #Recovery
*****
(*What is after "The Drinking Life"? Beyond "This Sober Life" as the verse above concludes, you may wish to delve into this author's intricately-woven 286-page journey of recovery, All Drinking Aside: The Destruction, Deconstruction & Reconstruction of an Alcoholic Animal, an Autobiographical Fiction, linked here: 
http://amzn.to/1bX6JyO.
Or you may wish to visit his Niume Recovery page here to explore the flavor & texture of his writing style: 
https://niume.com/pages/profile/?userID=26056  
or finally, discovery his even shorter Recovery Tweets here: http://twitter.com/JimAnders4)

The Insanity of Alcoholism... Relapse


"A man jumps out of a burning building, his clothing consumed in flames. Ripping off his clothes, some of his skin and burning flesh comes off with the shirt he was wearing. The blisters are now just forming, the smoke and stench of burning hair in the air. Paramedics struggle to put him on a stretcher, his arms and legs flailing from the pain of his suffering, his screams drowning out the screams of the sirens. Suddenly, he breaks free from the paramedics and runs back into the burning building, the walls now consumed in flames.
This is the insanity of alcoholism. This is Relapse. And this will happen again and again, each time just a little bit differently, each time progressively worse. Insanity, according to Einstein, is 'doing the same things over and over again and expecting different results.' The insanity of my disease wants me to cross through the threshold of that door, cross back to drink, to think that more is more."



*****
"Nothing matters more than that we remain sober because when we remain sober everything matters more."
*****
The passages above are excerpted from All Drinking Aside: The Destruction, Deconstruction & Reconstruction of an Alcoholic Animal, an Autobiographical Fiction by Jim Anders, linked here: http://amzn.to/1bX6JyO
Visit his Niume Recovery page here: https://niume.com/pages/profile/?userID=26056
& find his Recovery Tweets here: http://twitter.com/JimAnders4

18 December 2016

Scratch the Surface Until the Truth Runs Clear


"Here you are drunk and walking the hallways of the Taj Mahal Casino, picking cigarette butts out of ashtrays. You break off the filters and re-roll the butt ends with new cigarette papers. This is a way to survive, to think that you're surviving. This is when the only food is the juice in this vodka and cranberry. This is when it takes you two solid hours to get out of bed and put on a pair of shoes. This is when there is no next drink, there is just this one long drink that goes on forever. This is where there is no up or down and you can only move sideways. This is where waking up is like falling through a stage prop wall. This is where you carry your addictions in a cardboard box as if you were moving to another location. This is finding no location and the box is empty. This is standing and not being able to move. This is drunk and crashing, falling, falling through a bottom, tumbling. This is where a hospital wakes you up and you do not know who you are or where you are..." 

Scratch the surface until the truth runs clear.

*****
#Alcoholism #Addiction #Recovery


*****
"Nothing matters more than that we remain sober because when we remain sober everything matters more."
*****
The passages above are excerpted from All Drinking Aside: The Destruction, Deconstruction & Reconstruction of an Alcoholic Animal, an Autobiographical Fiction by Jim Anders, linked here: http://amzn.to/1bX6JyO
Visit his Niume Recovery page here: https://niume.com/pages/profile/?userID=26056
& find his Recovery Tweets here: http://twitter.com/JimAnders4

17 December 2016

Flying Rivers of Hope


(Flying rivers, that's what some scientists call the massive clouds of moisture over the Amazon rain forest. They contain more water than the Amazon river below in all actuality, simply dispersed in the vapor trails we call clouds.)

I live in the flying rivers of recovery, 
not as noticeable as the flying monkeys or 
the reptiles of the mind with snouts protruding 
from the river of addiction below.
This cloud is hard to hold in your hand 
or carry in your pocket, 
but carry it with you. 
Carry it with you.

Flying rivers, 
let me live, 
let me give and give back. 
Flying rivers carry me, 
carry me forward. 
Flying rivers of hope, 
fly me home.
*****

*****
"Flying Rivers of Hope," by Jim Anders, is not part of his book All Drinking Aside: The Destruction, Deconstruction, and Reconstruction of an Alcoholic Animal (an Autobiographical Fiction - linked here): http://amzn.to/1bX6JyO
(Order Now, Arrives Before Christmas)
Visit his Niume Recovery page here: https://niume.com/pages/profile/?userID=26056
& find his Recovery Tweets here: http://twitter.com/JimAnders4

14 December 2016

The Drunken Fox & The Grapes of Sobriety


An urge submerged leaps forward in this fox. A hunger overcomes him seeing a cluster of grapes glistening in the sun. Out of reach. Out of reach. He can not attain them alone, sly as he may be. "They're probably sour anyway," he says aloud, turning around, looking down. Sobriety will not be his today. "They're probably sour anyway." A victim of familiar pain, afraid to choose the path that only help can help attain. "They're probably sour anyway." Sobriety will not be his today. Another drink will come his way.


*****

*****


"The Drunken Fox & The Grapes of Sobriety" is by Jim Anders, but not part of his book All Drinking Aside. an Autobiographical Fiction - linked here: http://amzn.to/1bX6JyO

Visit his Niume Recovery page here: https://niume.com/pages/profile/?userID=26056
& find his Recovery Tweets here: http://twitter.com/JimAnders4

The Tomb of the Anonymous Addict


Sometimes walking down the street you think you hear the sound of leaves scuttling along, but these are the plans, hopes, dreams of the dead. Wind barely whispering over the green lips of empty bottles, syringes puncturing the silence in their stillness. Sentences gasping for a last breath, forever unfinished.
The Tomb of the Anonymous Addict is really many tombs in many doorways, further down anonymous valleys than any still alive have ever ventured.
No such monument truly exists. It's undedicated, the dead remains unidentified. It is truly unnamed and unguarded.
It tires me, this Tomb of the Anonymous Addict. It exists in my mind only.
And it makes me weary. 


*****

*****
Jim Anders is also the author of All Drinking Aside: The Destruction, Deconstruction & Reconstruction of an Alcoholic Animal, an Autobiographical Fiction, linked here: http://amzn.to/1bX6JyO
Visit his Niume Recovery page here: https://niume.com/pages/profile/?userID=26056
& find his Recovery Tweets here: http://twitter.com/JimAnders4

13 December 2016

PTSD: Do Not Forget a Soldier's Heart.

Lost in Terror when My Bottom Found Me,
Then This: So Close to PTSD, I wrote:

A soldier's heart is what they called post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) during the U.S. Civil War (which ended in 1865, one hundred and fifty one years ago). They did not know what else to call it. It was at the core of what they felt. "He's suffering from soldier's heart," they said.

Time marches on (and did march on) and during WWI the same sick soldier would be called shell-shocked. The munitions changed and the positions changed, the diagnoses altered slightly from the soldier's heart to the shell casings of bombs dropped too near.

The concentric circles of war overlapped once again in WWII and combat stress reaction and a spray of other diagnoses erupted as the medicalization of symptoms evolved and the prescriptions changed.

Today we call it PTSD and for a second we may look upon that same soldier as if under a microscope whose magnification may bring us closer to the truth found possible through advanced scientific methodologies, yet somehow further from the man, the man an echo beneath a barrage of symptoms.

Do not forget a soldier's heart.

*****
(Please note:  The above post is not from my book. When I first heard about Soldier's Heart, I was immediately reminded of PTSD and how I felt when I first hit bottom in 1996 - lost in terror.)
*****
Jim Anders is the author of All Drinking Aside: The Destruction, Deconstruction & Reconstruction of an Alcoholic Animal , an Autobiographical Fiction, linked here: http://amzn.to/1bX6JyO
Visit his Niume Recovery page here: https://niume.com/pages/profile/?userID=26056
& find his Recovery Tweets here: http://twitter.com/JimAnders4

Doubt (& no doubt) in Addiction (& Recovery)


Doubt can be a door to Recovery or a Trigger, a Relapse Trap. Mother Teresa overcame her doubts, knowing that if she did the next right thing, all would work out, doubt or no doubt (Please note: I'm neither a Catholic...). Conversely, a suicide bomber presumably does not struggle with doubt in the very least before destroying himself and all around him (... nor am I a suicide bomber).
No doubt, doubt played a significant role in my alcohol addiction and in my recovery process. Let me cite two simple examples:
DOUBT...
"Two-thirds cup of doubt in an empty cup. That was my kind of luck. No leap of faith would fill my drunken cup or keep me sober. 
My trust in my own recovery is not yet complete, has never been, and may never be. I have to be here fully, or close to fully, belly up to my own Recovery Bar. 
I am my own Trojan horse - a full cup hidden inside an empty one."
Yes, doubt can be troubling, disturbing, enigmatic.
... but NO DOUBT may not always lead to the positive results obtained in this single example:
"The doctor diagnosed my condition as a sinus infection and gave me a prescription for antibiotics. Knowing that I would be well in ten days made me feel subjectively better instantly. Nothing changed but my faith in the knowledge that things would change for the better very soon. If I can learn to apply this kind of trust to everything in my life, then I will feel better now and feeling better now will guide me into feeling better in the future.... "
Both DOUBT and NO DOUBT have inherent uncertainties. The doctor may have misdiagnosed, the pharmacy may have erred in the prescription's preparation, a universe of etceteras may exist. 
CLEARLY, mistakes and misdirection may occur no matter how sure and/or unsure one is, but good judgement is exercised more often on the side of caution in sobriety than in addiction. Drunk decisions, emotions and directions will more likely be debilitating than a sober, cautious pursuit in recovery. I have NO DOUBT that I will have LESS DOUBT in my decisions made in recovery than in the THOUSAND bottles of beer on the wall, the THOUSAND bottles of beer.
DOUBT or NO DOUBT, my decisions should have been obvious, but were more often oblivious. 
*****
"Nothing matters more than that we remain sober because when we remain sober everything matters more."
*****
The passages above in quotes are excerpted from All Drinking Aside: The Destruction, Deconstruction & Reconstruction of an Alcoholic Animal , an Autobiographical Fiction by Jim Anders, linked here: http://amzn.to/1bX6JyO
Visit his Niume Recovery page here: https://niume.com/pages/profile/?userID=26056
& find his Recovery Tweets here: http://twitter.com/JimAnders4

07 December 2016

10 Recovery Posts (Something for Everyone / Concise, Clear, Inspiring)


 1. "Can this Alcoholic in Recovery be Trained to Become a Social Drinker?"

 2. "The punishment for addiction is time served."

 3. "CONTROL: Desire, Illusion & Loss"

 4. "A knife, intended for his throat: the unintended consequences..."

 5. "not THAT A.D.D...., THIS one...."

 6. "The Autumn Leaves Turn Over Themselves"

 7. "Recovery Express?"

 8. "Altered States of Consciousness"

 9. "Insanity's Bouquet"

10. "The 12 Recovery Quotes Quiz that Nobody Aced (including me)!"

(Delve into these 10 short Recovery Posts on one page - click on the blue link here):



06 December 2016

Dem Bones, Dem Bones, Dem Crazy Bones


 "I've heard from staunch Creationists that God buried dinosaur bones the world over as a test of our faith in Him. My theory is that Demon Alcohol forced me to dig my own grave with every intention of throwing me into it. Dem bones, dem bones, dem crazy bones.... "

from All Drinking Aside



Print & Kindle Editions Available
20+ Five Star ***** Reviews 
Kindle 4.95 here: 
http://amzn.to/1bX6JyO.
Follow Twitter here: 
http://twitter.com/JimAnders4
Blog out here:
http://alldrinkingaside.com
Niume Recovery page here: https://niume.com/pages/profile/?userID=26056

04 December 2016

Sometimes Suicide's Not Suicide At All


Sometimes Suicide's Not Suicide At All.... It's Addiction Having the Last Word.
*****
Back in my drinking days I just wanted to get as safely crazed as possible. How could that have been? Wanting to get as Safely Crazed as possible? Who was I then? How was I able to maintain? What was I thinking when I truly felt and believed that? Truly, suicide was never my intention.
*****
Maybe you don't know about the bragging rights of getting high like I once did. Bragging "I was so fucked up last night " or "How did I ever get home? Can anyone tell me?" or perhaps more sheepishly sighing, "I don't remember a thing from last night" and all of these a subtle (and not so subtle) form of pride. A pride in how much I could drink and still sustain a career and housing. Boastful, but within certain limits. One did not want to boast too much.
*****
"I was always a little afraid of pills. Taking one Quaalude and waiting an impatient hour for the effects had, in the past, led me to take a second Quaalude, only to regret it later, after the first one grabbed hold.
Administering the proper dosage of alcohol to achieve the desired effect seemed more manageable. Not strong enough? Switch from scotch and water to scotch on the rocks. Not fast enough? Use less ice. I felt more in control with my alcohol (italicized, because alcohol was my little baby: she never let me down)."
*****
When one considers that I was a blackout drinker who continued to drink long after my ability to form memories dissipated, I still clung to the belief that, somehow, I had control over my drinking. I was always able to explain away the negative consequences of my drinking more easily than the other drugs. The other drugs could come and go as they pleased, but my drinking required more protection because it was always necessary.
*****
"Right before my last relapse, after having just gotten out of the hospital for an operation for abdominal hernias, I played Doctor with my prescribed pain medication. I took more than the prescribed dosage because I wanted quick relief. I was in pain. Then I didn't wait long enough for the next prescribed dosage time. Before you know it, I was immobile on the sidewalk, crazed. An ambulance was summoned by a passing stranger (apparently) and back to the hospital I went, having been just released a few short hours earlier."
*****
This outcome was not my intention. My intentions were always good. My intent and my consequences rarely seemed to jive. It might best explain why I never was a social drinker. My drinking and drugging would always continue, no matter the consequences.
*****
"If it takes eight pills to kill you, I used to feel safe taking six, and then two hours later I'd start wondering if it's safe to take another one or two. Never was it a case of wanting to commit suicide. I just wanted to get as safely crazed as possible.
"After the first drink, there is no other," That's how it was for me. Always another until my memory's obliteration. MORE was my operative word. And the operation was invariably a disaster.
*****
Currently, with 12+ years of continuous sobriety, MODERATION is now the operative word for me. Moderation in all things (with the exception that I abstain from alcohol and other drugs). The middle way is my way of steering clear of the excesses of emotions or actions that might parallel the insane extremes of my 30 years of acute alcoholism.
*****
Sometimes Addiction Does Not Have the Last Word, Recovery Does.
"Loving to drink. Living to drink. Dying to drink. Dying from drinking. This is the progression of alcoholism. Wanting to live. Learning to live. Loving to live. Living with love. This is the progression of recovery."
Sometimes suicide's not suicide at all. And Sometimes Addiction Does Not Have the Last Word, Recovery Does.
The Final Word is... Love.



*****
#Alcoholism #Addiction #Recovery
*****
The passages above in quotes are excerpted from All Drinking Aside:  The Destruction, Deconstruction & Reconstruction of an Alcoholic Animal , an Autobiographical Fiction by Jim Anders, linked here: http://amzn.to/1bX6JyO
Visit his Niume Recovery page here: https://niume.com/pages/profile/?userID=26056 
& find his Recovery Tweets here: http://twitter.com/JimAnders4




02 December 2016

Hovering, I Hit Bottom


    The lights outside the hospital emergency room were like the lights on the landing strip of an airport and I was a helicopter hovering, hovering, hovering. I stood on the street outside the emergency room of the Atlantic City Hospital. I had been in a blackout and I did not know how I got there. Finally, a paramedic came over to me, after 5 or 20 minutes. An hour? I don’t know.
  "Do you need help?"
  I answered, "This is not working. This is not working. The alcohol is not working. I cannot do what this is now, not working...."
  I collapsed on the street like a sandcastle knocked over by a wave. My sand spread out onto the sidewalk....



from All Drinking Aside: http://amzn.to/1bX6JyO.
Read more excerpts here:  http://alldrinkingaside.com 
Follow Twitter here: http://twitter.com/JimAnders4  

Niume Recovery page here: https://niume.com/pages/profile/?userID=26056