Always Watching

My oldest kiddo is a huge Tetris fan. When one of the most well known champs passed away recently, he was in shock.

He told me about a headline he saw, saying Jonas Neubauer has died, which he thought was a joke. Then he told me about his wife’s Twitter statement, confirming the awful news.

He passed away due to a ‘Medical Emergency.’

The first thing I thought is that he passed in his sleep, of drugs, alcohol, or both. I jumped to this conclusion because by now in my life I’ve known people who die in their 30’s. If it’s not a car accident that kills them, it’s more than likely drugs, alcohol, or suicide. Or a brain aneurism.

I didn’t want to be negative, so I suggested it could have been a brain aneurism, which is sudden and not terribly uncommon.

“Yeah,” he cooly replied. Followed by, “he was a big drinker. He would drink every time he streams, and at every tournament.”

Nothing else needed to be said.

They are always watching. Always 🤍

Day #661 and forever grateful 💙🙏🏻

Day 653

I can’t believe it’s coming up on TWO years since I’ve had a sip of alcohol.

One of my favorite songs is “Hate Me” by Blue October.

For YEARS, I listened to the line, “
I’m sober now for three whole months it’s one accomplishment that you helped me with” and couldn’t fathom 3 whole months. It’s still one of my favorites, and I can’t wait to say, “Three whole years.”

I’ve been seeing a ton of posts lately from people just beginning their sober journey.

I think of the years I spent, writing on here, about day 1 after day 1 after day 1. At times I felt like a sham, “Hi 👋🏻, me again, I F***ed up yet again.” Feeling like a sober imposter.

I didn’t understand it, any of it. I felt great during sober streaks, so why did I keep falling into the moderation trap? It never seemed to work, and just left me thinking of alcohol 24/7.

I want to hug all those in the very beginning. I want to tell them that showing up is half (or more) of the battle. And if they f*** up, to not give up. Keep showing up, reaching out, utilizing meetings & connecting with others, and to keep building that sober toolkit. I want to promise them that they’ve been lied to and there is so much more to life than feeding the monster while keeping it at bay.

I’m hopeful that people are starting to wake up. 🙌🏻☮️🦄

The Man at the Bike Shop

The Man at the Bike Shop- Cocoa Beach, Florida

I didn’t like him at first, he really irritated me. When I called, the lady who answered said they had a bag on the bike for our belongings, but when we asked at the shop, the man sternly said noooooo like we were off our rockers.

I had a wrist compression sleeve on and he asked about it while he was helping me with my bike. I told him that I have Rheumatoid Arthritis and a current flare. His next question got my attention. “What is your diet like?”

Nobody asks that question and I dubbed him immediately as one of my people (holistic/against the grain). I’m not against doctors, or my rheumatologist, by any means, but they do seem to be about 10-20 years behind the current trends (although these “trends” have been practice in the East for eternity- the West somehow got away from it, probably during the industrial era, AKA factory prescription drugs).

He told me to get turmeric, ginger, cayenne pepper, and garlic and to put it all in a capsule to take about 4 a day. He says it’ll help tremendously with inflammation, and also with healing my gut (80% of your immune system is in the gut, so if you have autoimmune problems, the gut is a good place to start). He talked my ear off about all sorts of things: juicing, diatomaceous earth, and the 7 important energy centers located in our body that can clue us in on problems (AKA Chakras). These are all things I do, or have done, so it was exciting to get some more information.

He claimed that people from all over in his area came to him for the magic inflammation pills. He’s also writing a book on all of this.

He works at the bicycle shop and is happy as can be, enjoying passing along important matters to the boss and not having the burden on himself. He used to be in the marines, then worked for GM. He had a family but recently went through a divorce, sold all his things, retired and is enjoying the good life on the beach with a side a job that makes him happy, and not stressed.

I spent part of my Sunday stuffing capsules with these spices

Since talking to that man, I’ve been consciously more healthy. I’ve been juicing regularly, taking that spice combo and trying to eat mostly whole foods in hopes to decrease my inflammation/flares. I believe that we come across people for a reason, and coming across this guy seemed to be great for my motivation.

That was last week.

Two days ago was Monday and we were back from winter break.

It was so overwhelming to think about going back this time. Usually I’m ready to go back, to get a good start to the new year and wait for the spring countdown to start.

I hate my job right now. I don’t feel effective most of the time. I get a stomachache when I think of coordinating meetings, parents or other teachers who don’t answer calls or emails, testing that needs to be done in a short window and takes a few of my students hours per test, the grossness goes on.

Most of my students want to be at school, this is hard on everyone.

Each day I’ve been daydreaming of purging all our stuff, moving to a shack on the beach and selling tacos out of a truck.

🌴🌊☀️🌮🚐

Survivor Guilt

I came across this post yesterday, and it made me cry.

Why her and not me?

I guess it hits hard because as I’m working on my vision board, I’m feeling so incredibly pumped for year 44.

And I think of the people in my life who are still drinking regularly, and think, why have I found recovery, and they continue to deny?

And it’s all good because it makes me hate alcohol even more.

But why do I get to see the truth while others continue to be lied to and live a facade?

Why do their kids have to suffer, while mine see me thrive as they enter into adolescence/adulthood?

Why me?

Why not them?

Q

No Vision Board

I’ve been working on this vision board for two days and I’m stumped.

I’m afraid it’s going to look exactly like my last one, with lots of fresh food and workout pictures, plus writing successes.

I want to be specific.

I don’t want to be too specific.

I may be afraid of commitment.

What do I want for 2021?

I want to finish a book! I have a ton of ideas and several books started with the intention of “whipping it out and self-publishing in a week’s time.” But then I get bored and abandon the WIPs.

I want to learn about chakras and how to do Reiki. I bought a course for $16 over the summer and have finally started it.

I want to learn more about intuition and our 6th sense, and get better at accessing these.

I want to continue to improve my diet, by decreasing processed foods. I want to learn more about using supplements to help my body where and when it needs it.

I want to be a better parent. There are a lot of areas for me to improve on here. Mainly, we need more structure & follow through. We are both so bad with follow through…

So… back to the board I go….

How about some Self-Love for 2021?

Self love is the foundation of health. Without it, our lives can become unmanageable, and it can happen so gradually, we may not even realize it.

It’s not always easy, and can feel really icky to take care of ourselves. But self-care makes up the blocks of that foundation. It can feel greedy when we set boundaries with family members or have to say no to an invite or favor. Sometimes we have to put ourselves first, which feels self-centered, but we have to take care of ourselves #1. If we are not well cared for, it’s nearly impossible to care for others. 

Happiness comes from the inside. When we don’t love ourselves, it’s nearly impossible to feel joyful, unless something really big happens- like winning the lottery or buying our dream home. On the other hand, when we practice self-love, we’ll find glee in the most mundane of places. I sometimes cry tears of joy while driving because the gratitude I feel for this life is overwhelming. It’s always a wonderful feeling and one I’ll never get tired of. 

Where to start?

Start with actively forgiving yourself. I don’t care how terrible you were or are, I urge you to realize that you were doing the best that you could do, and move on. Close your eyes for just one minute. Think of one or more things that you feel guilty about, thank the feeling for giving you the insight and then let it go. Visualize it floating up far far away. 

Notice your thoughts. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve proclaimed, out loud to someone, that I will be winning the worst mother of the year award, and meant it. I slam myself all the time, and so do my friends, which makes me think it’s kind of normal. Now that I know better, I have a name for those thoughts and have gotten good at sending them away. Sometimes my mind says nasty things about myself, which I’ve gotten better at noticing the absurdity of these thoughts. 

Start with these things and notice that it doesn’t really require you to “do” anything. You don’t have to wake up early, or do X minutes of whatever. Just notice and forgive. 

This seems so insignificant, but it’s the small shifts that create an avalanche of change.

So how about some self-love for 2021? I think we all could use it <3 

Self Love

 

 

 

Christmas 2020

Christmas 2020 will always bring me cherished memories. It will be remembered as an anomaly, and not because of the pandemic. This is the year we left stress, negativity and drama behind. And it was amazing.

The last two trips to Florida were in January and February and the weather was awful both times, so we didn’t go for the weather, and planned on bundling up/staying inside.

To our surprise the weather was gorgeous and hot. The whole week couldn’t have been better.

I ran around the block with my 15 year old nephew the first night, it was exhilarating.

All four boys, my two, plus my nephew who we have custody of plus the nephew in Florida meshed well the entire week. I should mention that we stayed at my sister’s house— a modest 3 bedroom home and having 5 extra adult sized people for a week can be, well, stressful. The kids were rockstars and my poor nephew in Florida was sad to see all our boys go.

We had some nice adventures. We kayaked with alligators, which was just awesome. The last one we passed (pictured below) was the smallest one we had seen so we got nice and close without getting scared. The weather was perfect.

On Christmas Eve day we went to the beach along the Atlantic Ocean. The waves were huge, the air was warm (80 degrees) and the water wasn’t too cold.

We all played in the water. Usually I play for a second, if that, before getting too cold. As I sat on the edge with my youngest and got knocked down by wave after wave, I realized how unique this was. It can be 80 or 90 and our pool water can be in the warm side, but I’m always cold in it no matter what. My chills were absent that day. I was perfectly fine, not too hot or cold. In disbelief, I checked my arms multiple times, but no goosebumps. For me this is really unheard of, and I consider it a miracle.

Hubby and I also rented electric bicycles and had some cool adventures riding through Cocoa Beach. We’ve wanted to try them for awhile and once again, the weather was amazing. I was hot in a tee shirt and was ecstatic that we were riding and hot in late December.

On the last night, we took the boys to Andretti’s Thrill Park. They had a blast, and rode their favorite, the go carts, several times.

The soul work I’ve been doing for a couple of years now appears to be paying off. I was so much less stressed than ever before. Usually on vacation, I worry excessively about my pets. I didn’t check on them once.

Even when my cat sitter called and said she might have corona, felt super run down and had to miss a day, I remained calm. When the dog daycare/boarding place called to say that Jules had projectile vomited during the snack and snuggle session, but was otherwise okay, I kept my cool, and let it go knowing it was out of my hands and not to worry.

I noticed the people I encountered, I mean really noticed them. What I concluded from my observations is that the small interactions we have on a daily basis is far more purposeful than I thought.

The old family friend we helped move, she gave me a new perspective on the audience I need to consider when writing spiritual books.

An active alcoholic who seems to have fond memories from rehab, as a cute/handmade religious sign on his walk hit me on the head. He talked about a friend from rehab making it for him.

Countless people from all over who relocated to Florida and I had small conversations with.

The rude lady at the airport who griped about a lady cutting the line, but later cut right in front of me. I almost said something like, “for someone complaining about cutting, it’s funny you cut in front of me. But I didn’t, and let the thought go. Later I found out something that gave me an enormous amount of empathy and I was reminded that we have no idea about people’s struggles.

The man at the bike shop who asked me about the brace on my wrist. I told him I have rheumatoid arthritis and knew he spoke my language when he asked about my diet. He gave me a recipe to make a supplement that will help with inflammation, and talked a great deal about the holistic/spiritual things I’ve been studying. He’s a self-proclaimed healer and is writing a book. I concluded that he has monkey brain like me, and am thankful for the knowledge he shared with me.

The old me would do anything to avoid any type of interactions while out and about. Now I’m blown away at the things you can learn from a stranger.

The old me also would have been counting the days of my vacation. About halfway through I’d be ready for it to be over, eager to get back home.

Not this time. I paid no attention to days or not having my dog in the bed, or going back to work, none of that was on my mind.

My sister noticed and told me she’s never seen me so relaxed during a vacation. The soul work I’m learning and practicing has instilled some automatic habits. I’m not thinking about tomorrow. I’m not thinking about yesterday, or worrying about things that didn’t happen.

I’m living in the moment, and it’s glorious.

And I’m loving everyone, even the tough ones, because more often then not, they’re the ones who need it most.

So that was Christmas 2020 🐊☀️🎄 Day #643

Teachers are Everywhere

WOAH this week got a little ugly. That last day that I wrote ended with me in a fetal position bawling on the shag rug next to the fireplace around midnight- way past my bedtime.

My mood was much lighter the following day. I think much of this was hormonal, plus holiday stress. I am feeling one thousand times better and have since that dreadful night. I feel that I navigated this ugly episode better than in the past. Meaning, it didn’t last as long and instead of crying all day, I cried for 15 minutes at midnight. So this makes me feel grateful.

A few days ago something simple but profound happened, and I don’t want to forget about it. I was at CVS picking up a prescription and decided to browse the Christmas aisle. I was still in that funk at this time, and this was probably a really stupid thing to do, but when I spotted a display full of liquor, I couldn’t help but to go look, and I stared. It was risky because I never know when that switch can flip and the alcoholic voice completely takes over. I studied the bottles; the brandy, the vodka, adult chocolate milk. I noticed that I didn’t desire it. I thought of the bottles as “bottles of lies,” but I wasn’t angry at it. Sometimes in the past I would flip the liquor aisle off, or at least scowl at it. I wasn’t really angry though. I didn’t really have any feelings toward it either way. I was happy to walk away empty handed and acknowledged that for a LONG time I would have never been able to do that. And this time I didn’t walk away because I knew I had to, but I wanted to. It felt so good!

On the way out I noticed a new display of exercise equipment. I was drawn to it like a magnet and instantly felt excited. Then I noticed that this aisle was much more exciting than the liquor aisle, a win. In the end I compromised and walked out with a couple bags of chocolate.

I’m reading a fascinating new book called, Your Psychic Pathway by Sonia Choquette. I’m trying to learn how to communicate with my soul voice better and so far this book has been awesome with my endeavor. I was about mid-way through when Sonia started talking about how we can “get blocked” and “holding onto things can impact our ability to listen.” Fortunately, she has a simple solution. Take a piece of a paper and make a list. A list of all the people who have made you angry. Examine each situation and take the lesson (in short).

Isn’t that the 4th step?

Curious timing since I’ve stalled on that step and need a gentle nudge- thank you Universe!

I’ve read dozens of self-help, personal development and spiritual books over the past few years and have noticed that they’re all connected. Basically all of the information is the same, just told from different perspectives. I’m not sure why this is so mind blowing to me, maybe because the beliefs seem so radical and nonsensical to many people.

One last thing that I want to celebrate and record. We hosted a Christmas party for my side of the family yesterday, which turned out perfect, right down to the mama and two adolescent deer laying in the side lot outside my bedroom window. It seems like the deer are never around when we have guests so this was exciting and my dad especially liked seeing them, but this isn’t the exciting part.

Remember my post way back about wanting to join a soccer team? Well, I excitedly told my dad about my idea, who I thought would be thrilled, being the sport lover he is.

“What?” he said, followed by:

“You’re too old. You’ll break a bone.”

Huh?

“I’m not even 50 yet!” I argued, with my feelings slightly hurt.

When you enter recovery and start digging into your “issues” you begin to learn that parents aren’t perfect and have many faults of their own. I’ve known for awhile that a big part of my problem is having my ideas shut down by my parents. This allowed the voice of my ego to grow, the one that says you’re not good enough. Or, you’re too old, you’ll break a bone.

So when dad’s response was this, I was shocked and then hurt for a bit, but then I noticed some things. I noticed that his response was probably mostly based on fear that I would truly hurt myself. I also noticed that I was wrong to be surprised at all by this, and a little voice said; he’s right, it was a silly idea.

I let it go but later thought about it while cleaning up and realized that this was absolutely no different than when I was a child! I knew exactly what I had to do. Now I have to join a team (might be summer of 2021 or later, but come hell or high water..).

This is all such a lesson, a repeating one at that and I almost fell prey! Had I conceded to those negative thoughts and believed my dad, it would have been no different than growing that voice as a child. I am super excited because this is growth, really really important growth.

This journey has given me far more blessings than I ever believed possible <3

Read more about Sonia Choquette here:

Home

 

 

Ho’oponopono

Ho’oponopono is a magic prayer.

I’m not very proud of my post from yesterday. It screams ‘Pity Party’. Before I wrote, I knew that I needed some gratitude practice. So before I even started, I jotted this down:

It did help, along with writing my post.

I cried during meditation yesterday and today. I think a big part of my distress is the guilt I feel for being an psychotic alcoholic for such a big part of the marriage. Did I do this to him?

I try not to think of the regrets I have, mainly regrets I have as a self-absorbed drunk mom.

And as these words thoughtlessly flow onto the page, I’m realizing that I just called myself some pretty harsh names, unfortunate, but not the point.

My ego is out of control, stress, and hormones (PMS).

While I was writing this, hubby got up and hugged me as he sauntered downstairs to begin work. I cried. I told him maybe his problem is because of me, how I was, for so many years. And then I told him that I have regrets, and I hate them most of all because I can’t change them. During all these years of recovery, relapses and struggling with Day 1’s , I don’t think I’ve ever told him about my regrets. So many things we just assume other people know, or assume that they don’t need to know. But maybe this is important.

Yesterday, I could almost literally hear my soul and my ego arguing. That little voice, my soul, kept saying things like, bundle up, just go for a walk, nature will be good, fresh air will be amazing, we need this.  Well, not the last one, but I did know that I needed it.

Ego tried hard to talk me out of it. He said things like, It’s way too cold, the treadmill will be so much easier not having to bundle up, if I go out for a walk, I’ll have to take the dog but he’s been so annoying on walks, just take a bath- it’s self-care. He really didn’t want me to go. But I listened to my soul and I put on two shirts and pants, a huge coat, scarf hat gloves and went 2 1/2 miles. The dog was annoying, but it was good to get him out and it did my soul good, although last night and today the nasty voice is still pecking at me.

I did a lot of praying last night- or pleading with my soul. I asked Spirit to help me sleep and to give me guidance. I am a huge believer that people, situations and things are sent to us with a purpose and I wanted the Universe to know I was expecting it and looking out for it.

A while back, I have no idea when, maybe summer of 2019, I kept seeing a word pop up everywhere- ho’oponopono, and I thought it must be a sign, but I didn’t do anything with it and it fizzled out.

This morning while reading from a book of lessons based on A Course in Miracles , it came up again. The lesson talked about Dr. Hew Len. Basically he got a job at Hawaii’s State Hospital dealing with the criminally insane (murderers, rapsists, etc). Previous employees quit within the month. Hew didn’t work with the inmates directly, like the doctors before him did. Knowing that we create our reality, he explains that he was healing the part of himself that created such atrocities. It’s pointless, he says, to try to heal others. All he could do was focus on healing himself.

Dr. Hew Len practiced the ho’oponopono prayer, by himself while looking at the patient’s files, and gradually the atmosphere around the hospital began to change. Patients required less meds, less shakling. Somebody began to tend to the gardens and tennis courts and the place was transformed. The prisoners, one by one, were eventually released. Within four years, the ward was closed down permanently.

This speaks to me.

Ho’oponopono returned, but this time I’ll listen.

Going to tape it to my wall, my fridge, my car. Going to repeat it as much as I can.

A Simple Hawaiian Healing Prayer: Ho'oponopono - Cupcakes and Yoga Pants

It’s a forgiveness prayer. Forgiving is magic.

And within two minute I receive this email:

Forgiveness

https://levnow.com/blog/transform-your-life-hooponopono

 

 

Running

Everything is bothering me today, this week, this month, actually.

I’m usually pretty upbeat & grateful, but my ego has my head exhausted.

Maybe it’s being stuck in a dirty house with so many men. There is often tension between my hubby and my teenage nephew, who isn’t used to discipline and quite frankly, IT SUCKS AND I HATE IT.

My office is in my bedroom, but hubby is still sleeping when I have to start work. So I have to wait for him, then I can get set up. This annoys me daily.

It’s cold outside & all week I’ve tried to use the treadmill during the day, but can’t because of people working nearby. Today if I want to run I have to wait until 6, or else bundle up and freeze.

After work, I tried to meditate. Got interrupted by hubby who busted in the room to use the bathroom & let me know that he didn’t have a call for 20 minutes in case I wanted to do the treadmill.

Thanks, but by the time I get into workout clothes I’ll have about 10 minutes. The meditation session was ruined.

And I want to kill hubby.

He’s got his own set of issues. I’m not sure if he’ll ever completely follow me on the spiritual path & it’s become clear that I need to address how not to allow him to affect me.

And huge lack of sleep due to contention around here (contention in my head, I should add). 😬

One week we’re leaving & I feel sad that all I want to do is get on that plane by myself. When we leave for trips, hubby is always super stressed & pissy the morning of.

Before now, it was easy to laugh these things off.

I’ve stopped laughing. I won’t even engage with some of his ranting (the pointless kind that just feels like he’s yelling at me, even though he’s griping about something else).

When I see him do things over and over again that just make him miserable 🤦🏻‍♀️😞

The point of this wasn’t to complain about my family. It was to say that I still feel like I’m running from the holidays.

But what if it’s not the holidays I’m running from?

Day #629