Magnificent Monday

A Monday without work is a magnificent Monday indeed!

And, sadly, it’s going to come to an end pretty soon. That’s quite ok. Friday is Good Friday, so it’ll be a nice 3 day work week.

This past weekend has been just excellent. Friday night was pretty lazy and I was out cold by 10:30pm. I woke up around 4:00 am to let my dog out and then again to start the day around 7:30. I fed the animals and then ate some leftover quiche. I was still feeling really groggy, so I went to bed after stuffing my face and didn’t wake up until 11:30! This is a true pic of me at 11:30 just realizing that I’m about to be suffocated by a small house lion.

Have I mentioned how completely frickin’ awesome sober sleep is???

After getting up and drinking loads of coffee, I was finally ready to start the day. Nevermind that it was almost 3:00pm. It was nice weather and supposed to rain all day Sunday, so I HAD to spend some time outside. I went to Proud Lake to hike on the trails by the river. Jules and I walked 4 miles and fed our souls with lots of Vitamin D and happiness. Everyone we passed was friendly and chipper– I think we are all overly ecstatic for spring temps to get here for good! I mean, Saturday was nice but we did wake up to a dusting of snow on Sunday.

Sunday was nothing but LAZY. I was up by 8:00 am, but napped a couple of times throughout the afternoon. Hubby and our youngest were home from their camping trip by 9:00am. They were exhausted and had a lazy day right along with me.

Monday was a more productive day. I got up, showered and went to Trader Joes. I found some herbs at a killer deal so I decided to start a small herb garden inside. I went to Hobby Lobby and got an indoor planter. Then I used my cricut machine to add some decorative letters. My sister and kids kind of think it’s gross and that the “poo particles” will fertilize the plants, and that’s disgusting. And just a side note, I’ve heard the phrase “poo particles” WAY too much this past year! I say the herbs will be pure and will grow well and make the bathroom smell good– it’s a win win!

After my project, I walked the dog 2.5 miles and then started getting ready for tomorrow (fun, fun!).

What am I most excited about today? WHY, it’s day 19!!! I am feeling better and better mentally and spend WAY less time thinking about drinking than I did while drinking or just a few days sober. I know that it might get tough again soon. I seem to relapse a lot around the 3 week mark. I blame PAWS and also amnesia of how bad it really WAS while I was drinking. I still have the ‘piss bed’ fresh in my mind and the horrifying day that followed, so I’m hoping to ride on that wave all week. WELL, it wasn’t that awful, just my mind ridden with guilt and shame and feeling the lowest I’ve felt in a LONG time. I don’t want to go back here, ever again.

Wishing you all peace, love and happiness ❤ ❤ ❤

Hooray for Friday, Longest Week Ever

This has been an excruciating LONG week. Coming back from Spring Break is never a treat, especially since we started giving students the state assessment beginning the week after break. The state assessment is the devil. It does not seem to align much with the curriculum we are supposed to be teaching (thank you Common Core), and is inappropriate for many of my kids. Actually, I think it’s inappropriate for all of the kids. So much so that the last time I checked 80% of our students (meaning ALL of the students in Michigan) were not proficient in science. Math and ELA had similar results, which leads me to wonder, WHAT are we measuring??? It’s a moot point.

I’m very excited to go into this weekend feeling strong and sober. I haven’t had this level of confidence and happiness in a long time. They are both fluid and can change in an instant, but overall I feel strong, grateful and elated to be going into my 3rd week. It seems to get quite a bit easier after 30 days. Celebrating day 16 today 🙂

I’m not sure what all I’ll do this weekend, but as a treat I took Monday off! Our students have 1/2 day and the other 1/2 is records day and we are allowed to work from home. I JUST finished my records this morning, so Monday will be a free day for me. That makes me SOOOOO happy!!! Hubby and my youngest are going camping with scouts all weekend, which means I’ll be stuck home with the teenager. I already tried to get him to go to painting with a twist with me, but he said no way. I’m thinking we might do dinner and the movies on Saturday, or some type of fun, we will see. I also want to work on my LAST (hooray) paper for my class. Next week is the final week and my last week of homework (double hooray!). I also want to get in a couple good walks this weekend, maybe even a hike at Proud Lake.

So… yeah.. life is good ❤ Life is always so much better when I’m sober ❤ I think I FINALLY learned that nothing good ever comes out of drinking and it does nothing more than lead me down an endless rabbit hole. No thank you, Betsy! I’m gonna do life on MY terms ❤

On the 12th Day…

Back to the grind today! Monday is especially brutal after a week off, but I made it in! Didn’t get up early to walk/run, and I did not do my ritual this morning either. BUT.. I made it to work and had time for a shower, so that’s something right?

I’m reading an awesome soul book. It’s called The Lotus and the Lily: Access the Wisdom of Buddha and Jesus to Nourish Your Beautiful, Abundant Life. It’s a 30 day guide that ends with making a mandala of all good things I want to come into my life. Day 5 is creating a ritual to be done at the same time each day. I have a candle to light, holy water to sprinkle on me, a prayer to say (that’s day 6) and planned to meditate for at least 5 minutes. BUT.. it all went out the window this morning. I was exhausted and didn’t have any energy to do anything extra. Tomorrow’s gonna be my day, gonna get up at 5:00 am and walk/run AND do the ritual. We went on a 10 mile bike ride yesterday, plus I walked for 30 mins so I figured it would be good to let my body rest anyways.

Work today has been good, but really I’m terribly tired and my back aches. Could be some PAWS happening also, it usually hits me bad at about 2-4 weeks.

Still not drinking and feeling SO grateful every day for this drive to stop. It’s strong this time, I’ve had a few situations pop up where I’ve thought about drinking (like an impromptu birthday party with the in laws at my house where I knew I’d have to listen to GOBS of complaining) but it was easy to ward off those thoughts because I DO NOT want a repeat of 12 days ago.

Ok, that’s all ❤ ❤ ❤

Cruise Control

It’s Thursday and Spring Break is cruising right along, a little too fast for my liking. It hasn’t been a super productful week, but I’m still sober so I’ve felt grateful every day.

The weekend was pretty full. On Saturday, our friends came down from Bay City. My BFF, Debbie, brought a cake for my son’s 16th birthday, but one of their dogs decided to eat half of it on the way here. They brought both dogs to play with mine. We had a boxer for years and years (he died at 13) who lived the first 6 months in a cage (please don’t ever buy from a pet store. Please. Please. Please.). I worked at a veterinary hospital in high school and throughout college. This puppy had mange and by the time he was healed he was too old to be sold. He went to a family with a 3 year old, but they said he was too rambunctious and brought him back. I took him home for the weekend and never brought him back. BUT, he was always strange around other dogs (not attacking them, but acting so strange that other dogs would attack him). My point is that my BFF and I have had dogs our whole adult life but this is the first time that they’ve been friends and we’ve been able to bring our dogs to overnight trips at each other’s homes. And please, if you get anything from this page, please please adopt don’t shop.

That was the main excitement so far. I am taking classes for my Master’s and this is the first morning I haven’t been spending doing homework. I talked to a health coach on Monday and will again today. The first 30 days is free and it’s been helpful so far in pointing me in the right direction. I haven’t been back to see Dr. Tent since January. I’m tired of a billion supplements. I might go back when I’m a few months sober and have had more time to be in control of my health. I’m going to be strong enough though to say no to a bunch of stuff to take. My feet are pretty ok right now. I do need to work on keeping up my sobriety, and eating better and will try to decrease the pred again (every time I get down to less than 5mg a day I’m plagued with pain). My personal goal is to be off all meds and pain free.

On Monday I bit the bullet and ordered a cricut machine. My birthday was back in March and I’ve been thinking about getting one for my birthday, but wasn’t sure I’d use it as much as I think. It was supposed to come yesterday and I was so excited to spend this week playing with it, but now it’s running late and will be here today, tomorrow or Saturday. I HOPE it comes today, I want to play with it especially while I’m off work.

Yesterday I took the boys and Andrew (my teenage nephew) to visit my grandma. I kind of dreaded it but it was a nice visit. We played Euchre with her and it was almost like old times up in Luzerne. Speaking of Luzerne, when she lived up north she taught a religious recovery program for people with addiction. I have always wanted to ask her about it and yesterday I finally worked up the nerve. I also shared that I’ve been to AA and have a problem with the drink. She was shocked and said I didn’t have a problem. I shared that one day I found myself wanting to stop but not being able to and how scary of a place that was. She said her brother was a functioning alcoholic and would stop on his way home everyday from work for booze. It was a tad difficult conversation but long overdo and it felt good to be honest and vulnerable.

I also had a significant conversation with my 16 year old the other day. He was also shocked that I think I have a problem. Does he think that falling over drunk (it doesn’t happen often, but has happened especially like when we’re up north with other drinking family members) and not remembering conversations is normal? At any rate, I hope that I planted a seed that says you don’t have to be homeless and living under a bridge to have a problem. I also hope that I opened up paths that will allow him to feel comfortable talking to me about drinking and addiction. I warned him that addiction is genetic and he would need to be careful. I honed in on the fact that one day you’re in college drinking like everyone else and the next day you’re a 40 year old parent who still drinks and maybe can’t stop, and how awful of a place that is to be.

I think that’s about it. My niece stayed the night last night so I will probably take them up to Airtime for a little bit this morning. Also I’m hoping to get a nice walk in and maybe a bike ride later with hubby if it’s not too cold (it hasn’t been great weather this week– but that’s ok nature is in full force and warm temps will be here before we know it– I just wish it was this week!).

I’m kind of happy that I had that AWFUL day last week. It propelled me into wanting to stay sober. This week could have been very different had I been drinking. I am so grateful for day 8 today and still don’t have a desire to drink (I mean, I have longed for it occasionally at certain points, but shut the AV down quickly. I NEVER want to feel like I did last Thursday, EVER).

God Bless ❤ ❤ ❤

24 Hours

It’s been a busy couple of days. I drank once since the last time I wrote and I believe it’ll be the last. I was SO filled with guilt and shame the next day, it still makes me cry. This is what I posted in my sober circle that sums it up:

Super ugly post warning. I don’t remember having a day feeling this low. I wasn’t going to drink last night, but I did. I woke up in a puddle of piss. I WET the f’ing bed! I can’t even tell you the amount of shame and guilt I have today– over not just this but the enormity of it all. I showered this morning, but still felt like I smelled like piss all day. I hope (pray) it was in my head. I looked like garbage all day and functioned at probably less than 50%.

My hubby texted me twice throughout the day and both times I was reading into things thinking he’s going to boot me to the curb. How can he not hate me? And my poor kiddos– what the hell am I doing to them continuing to drink? It was so hard to go to school today and try to act normal when walking around with a boat load of shame, guilt, etc.

Fortunately, I have some good things to look forward to. My BFF is coming down this weekend to visit for my son’s bday. Next week is spring break and I am SO excited to get back to the things that are good for me and hopefully make it to some AA meetings, maybe even find a sponsor and start on these steps. I hope and pray that this is it. I’ve said that literally like 1000 times, BUT I don’t think I’ve ever felt this low. If you are the praying type, I would appreciate a prayer. I need all the prayers, positivity etc that I can get right now ❤

Now it is March 30th. That day that I posted this ended on a high note. Hubby was forgiving. We rode our bikes that evening up to have dinner. We didn’t talk about “it” other than me telling him that any and all alcohol in house must go (even the kind that gives me zero temptation) and that I HAVE to stop. The dinner, the 8 mile ride with the birds singing and frogs calling, the weather — it all was so refreshing and filled with so much life and renewed hope. I knew then that I can’t go back.

I felt much better the next day and find it absolutely amazing how much things can change in 24 hours.

Image result for each day buddha

For the moment, I’m keeping busy, but not tempted in the least. I tagged along last night with hubby, sons, brother in laws and nephew to see an awful movie (Marvel- I hate action and violence). It was a nice time though and we had dinner out which was delicious. My brother in law got a drink at the restaurant and again at the movies. I had no desire to join him or go home and drink. In fact, I talked to him for a bit about his longtime best friend (who coincidentally was our neighbor when we bought our first house) who lost his wife suddenly over a year ago. He was always a drinker but his wife kept him in line. He’s completely lost all control since she died. I am so sad for him. He’s choosing death over life. I hope he comes out of it.

My kids and I are off school next week for spring break. Timing is a pure blessing and could not be better. This will give me time to read, write, meditate, go to AA, set up an appointment with my old therapist, and work on my soul. And to think a week ago, I was actually going back and forth about drinking over break. I am so thankful to NOT have that internal dialogue in my head right now and the gift of sobriety today. Vacation is always so much better with a clear head and a clean soul ❤

One more thing.. Lately I have been reading some incredible books that I think will be life changing for me. One is The Secret, by Rhonda Byrne. The other one is, The Lotus and the Lily: Access the Wisdom of Buddha and Jesus to Nourish Your Beautiful, Abundant Life, by Janet Connor. I’m just getting started but am learning about some amazing principles. I can’t wait to share more as I embark upon this new and exciting journey!

Anyways, time to check some more things off my list. Have a GREAT weekend ❤ < 3 ❤

The Devil Inside

I’ve been thinking a lot about my thinking. I’ve been researching also and have read some really great books about our powerful mind– and that pesky voice– you know, the one I call Betsy.

I’ve been noticing things that intrigue me, and wondering. Why am I so depressed when I’m not sober? Is it because alcohol is a depressant? Or is it my addiction telling me that my life is so bad and stressful, that I need and deserve a drink.

Is this the same voice that tells me I’m fired when my key card doesn’t work? The same one that tells me parents are going to be angry at me? The one that tells me that I look like a chubby adolescent and should just finish the cake? The one that says I’m not good enough. Or smart enough. Or pretty enough.

WHO is this voice? And WHY does she have so much animosity toward me?

Do you have this voice too? What does yours say? Is yours as much as a negative Nancy as mine?

I’m giving ole’ Betsy (my inner alcoholic voice is named Betsy, after the horrid Betsy DeVos who is the spawn of a devil and is going to single handedly try to turn our public education into prison pipeline) the boot!

No more bashing on me, I’m not going to take it. And no more telling me I need the cake– or I need a drink. I WILL DECIDE what I need or want.

I’m going to give myself so much love and you should too ❤ ❤ ❤

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My WHY

My kids

My hubby

My extended family

My health (mental, emotional, physical)

My students

To remember going to bed and what I said

To be productive at work

To wake up clear headed and energized

To sleep well

To pursue my hobbies and create new ones

To be able to exercise and push myself harder

To finish that book

To finish reading all of those wonderful books

Bed parties

Belly laughs

To shred the shame

To be my best

For happiness and peace

Teenage Birthday Party and Chubby Adolescence

It is Monday afternoon and I think I’m still recovering from the weekend. I spent most of the day Sunday on the couch. I kind of wanted to go to a couple stores nearby (to shop for fun stuff– crafts and clothes), but didn’t make it off the couch. Thankfully I have Shipt and was able to get the groceries delivered and I did end up getting the last of my laundry done, so there’s that.

My oldest son, the one who has declined a ‘friends’ birthday party for the last several years, is turning 16 on Wednesday. He wanted 2 things: to have his friends over for a Smash Brothers tournament and to get a White Castle crave crate– or whatever the huge box with 100 burgers is called.

So we hosted an overnight party for my son and 6 of his friends– 2 of which I’ve never met before. It was CrAzY !!!

But.. they all survived, and we (the adults) did too. They had lots of fun (I think) and made some really great music (guitar and piano) and I had some great conversations with some of them. So it wasn’t unlike his 5 year old birthday party– the kids were just bigger and better able to sit still and hold a conversation.

On another note, I am not feeling very pretty lately. The braces are getting old and I still have only the top ones on, so the metal in my mouth is going to double in about a month. I’m back up to 10 mg of pred per day and have gained weight– much of it noticeable in my face. So, I’m feeling very chubby adolescent lately. I’ve decided to embrace it.

My hubby complimented my top teeth on how good they are looking and I told him that in a couple years I will be a new woman. I’ll have my Master’s degree and straight teeth. He then had a worried look and asked me if I was going to trade him in for a better model.

I said “Heck no! Just stick with this chubby adolescent and you’ll have a mate for life.” ❤

Diabetes Fun

I am not always proud of my parenting skills– I think that is normal and to be expected. Sometimes I lose my temper, or don’t follow through with things.. But I am doing the best that I can and at the end of the day my boys know that they are loved.

Having a child with a chronic illness can be extra challenging sometimes. Our son was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes when he was 13 years old. We were extremely lucky. His symptoms were found at a wellness visit and we were directed to the closest children’s hospital. We stayed for 3 days to get educated and we were well taken care of. Most of it seemed more like a hotel stay than being at the hospital. The Detroit Symphony Orchestra even came to the children’s floor to give a private concert. He wasn’t sick, he wasn’t in pain and while the diagnosis was a shock, I was completely grateful that he had an illness that could be completely controlled.

In the 2 years and 3 months that we’ve lived with diabetes, I think we’ve done just fine. It’s not always easy and we make mistakes, but we are doing the best that we can. And I am grateful that at age 15 he basically manages his diabetes without much help from us.

We have to get checkups every 3 months and they test his blood to see if his A1C has gone up or down or stayed the same. The lower the A1C, means his average blood sugar levels are ideal– so the goal is never to have an increased A1C.

Our drives to the hospital are sometimes stressful. He isn’t great about keeping his log updated (we religiously updated it that first year and constantly sent it to the hospital for them to monitor his numbers, but that becomes less necessary as time goes on and he’s able to change doses to meet his needs). So the drive can include me prodding him to backchecking his glucometer to update the log- plus me stressing to get him back to school- or home in time for the little one, etc. On my less than proud moments I might spend the drive lecturing him about high numbers he didn’t tell me about or not taking insulin BEFORE he eats.

Yesterday was our 3 month checkup. I picked him up from school and we had a nice drive. He played his favorite song (Africa, Toto) over and over again. I asked him how he thinks he’s doing. His response was surprising. “Not good at all. I’m always between 2 and 300 and I should have increased my Lantus (long acting insulin) dose. I don’t even know why I didn’t think of it until now. Yeah, this is not going good.”

Boy.

You are managing a disease that even adults have a tough time with. Pretty much, On. Your. Own. He never ceases to amaze me and is one of my personal heroes.

I spent the rest of the drive reminding him of all of the things that he IS doing well. Plus, he’s still alive. HUGE bonus since he has a total nonworking pancreas and must do all of the work himself, manually, at every single meal.

Our visit was fine, although his A1C went up. They didn’t yell at us, but gave us some tips for lowering it. I have a feeling that our conversation in the car will help motivate him to stay on track more so than if I had yelled and berated him.

Yep, I’m not always proud of my parenting, but I feel like yesterday was a win. I’m going to remember to do more talking and less yelling and lecturing ❤

The Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day

Yesterday was gross, like all of it, just ick.

It wasn’t what happened, so much, it was more how I felt and dealing with those feelings.

Not long ago, you see, those same exact feelings would have me reaching for external comfort– food, liquor, wine, pot… any of it would do.

So.. when what started as a positive and promising day turned south, it was only natural to want to high tail it to the party store. I don’t really, after all, have a problem, I mean I’ve had some good longer sober stretches so WHO cares if I drink like once a week?

Hook, line and sinker… and then Betsy does her triumphant dance.

NOT yesterday.

NOT this time.

What did I do?

I wrote letters that I’ve been putting off for weeks (there is something oddly satisfying to handwriting heartfelt notes). I took the pup for a walk in the balmy cold. I sauteed a healthy dinner of veggies and eggs. I sat in my cozy chair and just thought for a bit. I still felt a tad down and sad after it was all said and done, but not that panicked “I have to consume something toxic” feeling that often overcomes me when I feel sad and lonely.

But I was still scared. I didn’t know how today would be and if these feelings would carry over and if I would be tempted and give into temptation.

But I woke up feeling Betsy’s triumph (MAN it was WONDERFUL). It’s still very early and I don’t want to count my chickens before they hatch, but I am feeling optimistic. One day and one moment at a time ❤

Drinking today is borrowing tomorrow’s happiness” — not sure who originally said it, but it’s a brilliant quote with so much truth.