22 January 2022

A SEEMINGLY ENDLESS DIGRESSION THAT DOES WHAT IT SAYS AND IS WHAT IT MEANS...

(Ari Engber)

I will have to elbow my way through the use of too many words to bring this short post to its conclusion.

There will be a point to all this, but if you have read any of my other posts, you already know that the Subject is Recovery and the Object is Another Day Clean & Sober.

It is necessary for me to include the entire lyrics of this less than three (3) minutes song to explain how I was hypnotized by it when I was a mere fifteen years old. Although there may be a comma or a period in there somewhere, to me it is one long, run-on-sentence that if it weren't so tight, it would not be right.

Please bear with me here. 

I am asking you to read each line of this song broken up into the segments that my mind's eye hears (lol, my eye hears!). 

But I digress. 

Please imagine that each short line segment is a single ocean wave slowly hitting the the slightest angle of the beach and then just as slowly draining back into the vastness from whence it came. If you have ever been to the beach, likely you will have noticed the same yourself.

The song is "Ebb Tide."

"First the tide

Rushes in

Plants a kiss

On the shore

Then rolls

Out to sea

And the sea is very still

Once more

So I rush

To your side

Like the oncoming tide

With one burning thought

Will your arms open wide

At last

We're face to face

And we kiss

Through an embrace

I can tell

I can feel

You are love

You are real

Really mine

In the rain

In the dark

In the sun

Like the tide

At its ebb

I'm at peace

In the web 

Of your arms

Ebb Tide."

Easily found on YouTube, if you wish, but it's not necessary. At fifteen, this one song was one long MANTRA, endlessly repeated (if you consider less than three minutes to be endless). Endless in itself, it became even more endless (if that is possible) when I played it over and over and over again. It gave me peace.

The Subject is Recovery and the Object is Another Clean & Sober Day. I wish to remain calm, even in a storm, and I fail repeatedly but get back in that slow saddle which is recovery and proceed forward. This is not "Addicted to Chaos" as one often hears in the Rooms of Recovery. This is the Peace that is Recovery after the Storm of Addiction has passed and...

At Last

You have found

Some Peace

For yourself

That is real

You can feel

That the days

In themselves

Have meaning

Without end.

*****

#Enjoy ALL DRINKING ASIDE: The Destruction, Deconstruction & Reconstruction of an Alcoholic Animal (This first book, an Autobiographical Fiction, is to be found on Amazon. Book it here): http://amzn.to/1bX6JyO
My second book is BECOMING UNBROKEN: Reflections on Addiction and Recovery. Find it on Amazon here: https://lnkd.in/dkF767RT




21 January 2022

(Not ABC, HIJ, or RST) + "SHARED COURAGE" = A Successful Start in Recovery

(boldomatic.com)

Not ABC, Not HIJ, Not RST. I am not a proponent of Atheism, Buddhism or Christianity. I do not advocate Hinduism, Islam or Judaism. I am not a spokesperson for any particular Religion, Spirituality or Theology. 

I am an Alcoholic and Addict in long-term Recovery. with no particular axe to grind (as the Alphabet Soup which opens this post amplifies). I wish to meet any Newcomer to Recovery where they are in the moment. My only Agenda is to help where and how I may. Active Listening is an Art and I am a Novice at the Trade, but the rewards of trying to comprehend exactly where another person stands instead of preparing in my head what to say next has reaped benefits many times over.

Silence IS Golden. 

It was Ralph Waldo Emerson who said, "It is one of the most beautiful compensations of this life that no man can sincerely try to help another without also helping himself." I wholeheartedly agree. If and when I am able to help another, truly, it also, inevitably helps me.

Recovery Takes Courage. Shared Courage is a Process and a Product of my Recovery. I, alone, could not get clean and sober and stay that way for more than one hour, much less one whole day. A solid foundation, roots in the ground, boots on the ground, and wings to fly: These things were not possible for me in my addiction (My Drug-Fueled Illusions would crash many times over before I, with help, found sustained Recovery). 

I do not miss my multiple substances today. They have been replaced by human connection in multiple Recovery Communities. Join in. Take part in your own recovery. It seems to me that life can be so good.

*****

#Enjoy ALL DRINKING ASIDE: The Destruction, Deconstruction & Reconstruction of an Alcoholic Animal (This first book, an Autobiographical Fiction, is to be found on Amazon. Book it here): http://amzn.to/1bX6JyO
My second book is BECOMING UNBROKEN: Reflections on Addiction and Recovery. Find it on Amazon here: https://lnkd.in/dkF767RT


15 January 2022

Self-Denial Fallacy / Self-Fulfillment Fact

 

(thecrcl.ca)
FEAR: Most of my fears about not drinking and drugging before I got sober were based on the false assumption that I would have to live in the prison of Self-Denial for the rest of my life. Sitting on a cot behind the Bars-of-Not-Drinking, I would tick off the hours and days of abstinence, each sober day a punishing and accumulating tabulation of the great hole in my life the absence of alcohol would produce.
NATURALLY, I could go on and on, but this could all be summed up with: the punishment for being an alcoholic was my life would become an absence, a gaping hole where even the possibility of thinking about self-fulfillment would be forever denied.
AFTER 30 YEARS OF DRINKING, my self-will had been hijacked. I had to drink whether I wanted to or not. Explain that to a Social Drinker. You do it. I don't have time at the moment. RECOVERY is my RELEASE from the Prison that is Addiction.
SELF-FULFILLMENT FACT: Every thought, action and feeling in recovery begins, ends and is fully contained in GRATITUDE.

09 January 2022

THE MOST BORING POST I HAVE EVER WRITTEN: My SPINE was TOO BIG and where things stand now, it would BLEED. [I am SO EXCITED!]

 My SPINE was TOO BIG and where things stand now, it would BLEED.

"Sorry to hear that," you might exclaim.

No Worries. My BACK is Fine! It's not MY spine, rather, the Spine of my New Book, "BECOMING UNBROKEN: Reflections on Addiction and Recovery," which would bleed [Bleed is a printer's term for letters extending beyond their intended boundaries (of my book's spine, in this case)]. The Cover was designed to accommodate more pages. As things stood, the spine of Becoming Unbroken would bleed ink from its spine onto the Front and Back Covers. As I neared the end of this almost nine (9) year race to publication, I failed to let the designer know the exact thickness of the finished product (DIRECTION IS MORE IMPORTANT THAN SPEED!).

My first book, ALL DRINKING ASIDE, was created by the most INCREDIBLE DESIGNER. No one but her could possibly design the cover of this second book.

In the process of getting the content of my book's content finally approved by the Publisher, I submitted it with the design somewhere just south of two hundred (200) pages. My first book, All Drinking Aside is 286 pages long, and although I never got a complaint from those who have read it saying they thought it too long, I had a nagging suspicion that a shorter length book would find more readers.

So, I SQUISHED and SLASHED and Edited it DOWN TO THE BONE (never telling my Graphic Designer that it would end up a mere hundred and fifty-two (152) pages rather than just under two hundred (200) pages as I had originally relayed to her.

LONG STORY SHORT:

MY SPINE WILL NOT BLEED,

So, soon you may #read

BECOMING UNBROKEN.

I'm finished. I've spoken.

*****

In the meantime, while you wait for Becoming Unbroken, #enjoy ALL DRINKING ASIDE: The Destruction, Deconstruction & Reconstruction of an Alcoholic Animal  

Find it on Amazon. Book it here: http://amzn.to/1bX6JyO 

#alcoholism #addiction #recovery #books

Thanks!



 




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23 December 2021

A SYNTHETIC LIFE (DO Drugs or BE Yourself... that is the Question)???

"One pill makes you larger and one pill makes you small and the ones that mother gives you don't do anything at all." - Jefferson Airplane, "White Rabbit"

It is quite simple to smoke, snort, ingest or shoot up. I did much or more than most for 30 years. 

Think of, let's say, the difference between a 'real' Christmas tree and a 'synthetic' plastic or aluminum one.

Now, STOP RIGHT THERE! The pine needles are not of the injecting kind (lol) They are perceived with the eyes and nose and memories are attached to them. Likewise, the 'synthetic' one (although the actual smell of aluminum or plastic, in and of themselves, don't conjure up much). 

THE SYNTHETIC LIFE IS SMOKED, SNORTED, INGESTED OR SHOT UP. 

As the song "White Rabbit" concludes, "Feed Your Head, Feed Your Head."

My point is simply this: Feed your head with experience, not with a chemical that temporarily changes your brain chemistry. 

GET REAL!

RECOVERY IS REAL.

ADDICTION IS NOT.

Manufacture your own brain chemistry in Recovery. 

Addiction is a temporary yet repetitive hell, all dead ends.

Recovery is "Possible. Doable. Irreplaceable."

(donconnelly.com)



19 December 2021

Becoming Unbroken

 


I am
the shadow of the man
I once was
and he,
he is 
the shadow of me.
Together,
we are becoming unbroken
and clean and sober,
I
am becoming me.

11 December 2021

A DRUG-FREE HANGOVER

 


If I were to title this photograph, it would be "TWO SEA CREATURES," referring to the first Sea Creature pictured above me that lives in the ocean off to my left maybe two hundred yards and the second Sea Creature would be me crawling onto dry land after my 30-year descent into a Sea of Alcohol (seen here holding a copy of my first book).

So OBVIOUSLY, I know what a HANGOVER is, but what may not be so obvious is that after my second of three decades of Daily Binge Drinking, I rarely had a hangover.

"Why, Jim? Why is that? Rarely a hangover?"

I remained just drunk enough those last 10 years that a hangover rarely made an appearance. The Hair of the Dog kept my level of toxicity hovering somewhere between incapacitated and blackout drunk for that entire last decade.

"What about this DRUG-FREE HANGOVER? What's that about?"

It's about waking up Clean & Sober for the 17th year in a row without feeling the nagging aftereffects of the evening that preceded it. 

When I drank, during my drinking decades, the hangovers, when I still had them, were about trying to piece together the events of the night before. Today, my drug-free hangovers are appreciating the lingering memories of time well-spent and fully enjoyed over these many clean and sober years.

A Splitting Headache or a Drug-Free Hangover? The Choice became more obvious to me as my Recovery has progressed. Today I know that Recovery is Possible, Doable, Irreplaceable. A Drug-Free Hangover comes Highly Recommended (pun intended).

Now, a New Year is upon us. I raise my glass of Sparkling Cider to toast the coming year. May we find Peace Together with each passing day, instead of failing to Piece Together the drunken blackouts of the endless string of days we've left behind.

Did I mention the Third Type of Hangover? There's the Drunk Hangover, the Drug-Free Hangover and then there's (unfortunately) My Belly's HANGING OVER My Belt! 

Happy Hangover, One and All!

*****

ALL DRINKING ASIDE: The Destruction, Deconstruction & Reconstruction of an Alcoholic Animal  

Find it on Amazon. Book it here: http://amzn.to/1bX6JyO 

#alcoholism #addiction #recovery #books

01 December 2021

Between ALL DRINKING ASIDE & BECOMING UNBROKEN: My 2021 Year in Review


(fasken.com)
GEE WHIZ! What a Long Year 2021 has been! TWO GIANT LUMPS took up most of my time, the first being my 146 Commentaries on Quotes by the Famous, Infamous and Anonymous as they relate to my past Addictions & present Recovery (written between April and June) and the second being work on my second book nearly Daily since then. 
HERE ARE A FEW SELECTED HIGHLIGHTS from 2021 in chronological order (except where noted, all are the Titles of Articles I posted on Social Media throughout the year).

01/09/21: "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." - [This little quote in the middle of a post I wrote about Confronting Truth turned out to be about the most controversial thing I wrote this whole year, mostly because of the very graphic picture of a hypodermic needle that accompanied it.] The rest of 2021 has been relatively smooth sailing since then: 

01/13/21: "There Is No Safe Harbor When the Sea Is Alcohol"​

01/23/21: "A Toxic Cocktail of Emotions Enflamed by Alcohol, Narcotics & Prescription Drugs"

02/04/21: WHAT DO Punxsutawney Phil & ALL DRINKING ASIDE Have in Common?

03/10/21: The PRISM of EMPOWERMENT or The PRISON of ADDICTION

Also in March, I had the Honor & Privilege to be Interviewed on "Rapping with Dr. Jacalyn: Stories of Resilience" (a 45-minute Global Broadcast on YouTube) 

From 04/10/21 - 06/20/21: I wrote 146 Commentaries on Quotes by the Famous, Infamous and Anonymous as they relate to my past Addictions & present Recovery.

06/18/21: Marked the 17th Anniversary of Continuous Sobriety

07/05/21: I posted a personal favorite Recovery Verse on Linked in titled "Halfway to Nowhere (& Another Drink)"

08/19/21: IMPOSTER SYNDROME: "You'll Never Be Anything but A Drunk"

09/11/21: 50th Anniversary of "The Pub" (25 Years Before My First Sobriety)

10/01/21: Going COLD TURKEY Might Mean YOUR GOOSE IS COOKED

11/26/21: RECOVERY Turns MOONSHINE into SUNSHINE!

If any of the above strike your fancy, they can be found in full indexed by date at www.alldrinkingaside.com.

While you wait for the publication of Becoming Unbroken in 2022, please consider ALL DRINKING ASIDE: The Destruction, Deconstruction & Reconstruction of an Alcoholic Animal  

Find it on Amazon. Book it here: http://amzn.to/1bX6JyO 

7,000+ Recovery Tweets here:   https://twitter.com/jimanders4

#alcoholism #addiction #recovery #books