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First off, a huge “Thanks” to those of you who read and commented and sent me good vibes about my last post. Your suggestions really helped put me on the right track. As did a nice talk with my sponsor.
But before i get into that, let me just say i think i was a little misleading in that post. If i came across as a guy wallowing in guilt over my past mistakes, this isn’t the case. i did stupid things when i was drinking and sobriety has given me the clarity to see just how messed up some of those things were. i’m pretty good about ‘Respecting the Past‘ and i have a lot of tools that help me make a mental adjustment when i need to.
The question i popped in that last post was more of a question of semantics, and that’s how i presented it to my Sponsor last night.
We will not regret the past nor wish to shut the door on it.
That quote is from the AA Promises and i thought i must be doing something wrong if i still had regrets. My Sponsor, basically, told me this is more of an ideal goal to shoot for, but not achievable for everyone. What’s important is not necessarily eliminating regrets, but more not letting them control me. And i’m cool with that.
i also mentioned my guilt over not being a better parent in the past, though i realized thinking that thought is a dangerous monster to feed. My Sponsor reminded me that every day i’m sober is one more day of “the past” that my children can look back on and remember and think, “Dad did the right thing today.” And it’s more recent to boot, fresher in their minds.
So thanks again, everyone, and here’s a dry toast to kissing regrets goodbye!
i have a lot to learn and, unfortunately, i learn as slow as a snail in syrup.
Today’s example of this is regrets. i’ve posted before about how i do regret my past and i just can’t get (dare i say it? – yes, i dare) past it. i know i’m not supposed to regret the past nor wish to shut the door on it, but i do.
i did some pretty shitty things in my past. If it were just me, then yeah, i could probably let it go. But i hurt people in my drunkenness. Badly. i cannot say i don’t regret this.
Now i know i have to accept my past. i can do this. I know i have to recognize my past led me to where i am today and i do. Job done. But i regret hurting loved ones to get here.
If regret means
- Wishing i had not hurt people
- Feeling sad that my drunken decisions adversely affected others
- Experiencing pangs of guilt over my past actions
then i regret the hell out of a lot of the bullshit i pulled back in the day.
But i’m trying to get better. Case in point, i’m opening this up to my readers in general and i’m saying that i don’t know how to stop regretting my past actions and i’m asking you to help me with your advice, suggestions, tips and whatever else it takes to help me get over these regrets!
Thanks in advance, peeps!
You could pig out on candy and not have any dinner.
You should just binge on TV all weekend.
Take another 5-minute break on top of the 18th 5-minute break you’re just finishing.
Just click on one more link.
You owe it to yourself to look for every sexy picture of Amber Heard every leaked online.
You deserve a drink.
Angry Birds is on Facebook!? And you want to write!?
Maybe it’s just me, but i realized the other day that my cravings come in voices. I’m not saying the fish sticks in the freezer are telling me to kill my boss, but when i’m tempted to press the “fuck it” button, the temptation comes in the form of words. Exactly like those above.
The frustrating thing is that i recognize all of those actions won’t make me happy, but i have to take the time to quell the voice before i can enjoy my time. Or sometimes i give in (except for the drink, of course) and feel some degree of bad about it later.
At least now i understand that voice is not right. Before, because it came from inside me, i thought it was what i really wanted. The more meetings i attend and the more service i give, the faster i’m able to recognize the voice as temptation.
But here’s the thing i don’t get. Where does this voice come from? Where inside of me do i get these messages that will lead me to being unhappy?
Sober parents are stars shining over the sea of their kids’ lives.
In times of smooth sailing our stars are simply a reassuring and pleasant presence, but in stormy times our children will be able to look up to us, and navigate through their difficulties by the light of our examples.
You’d never guess from reading this blog, but i’m a writer. Like, kinda a real one.
i’ve published around 25 short stories in different literary reviews and am looking for an agent to sell a book proposal i’ve put together. i write 5 blogs under 3 different names and i’m a freelance journalist here in “Yeaman”, where i have my own column.
i mention this because i started writing about the time i started drinking. At the beginning, writing and drinking went together like “mast” and “urbation” (see how write-y i am and shit?), because drinking helped me live life and writing helped me process it.
In college, i was able to spend all night writing. Literally. i remember pounding the keys of my Apple IIc until dawn, awash in the green monitor light, finishing short stories and novels and feeling damn good about it because the writing was good because it came from my heart.
Real art comes from a raw place. Emptying my soul drained me and the easiest way to refill that void was booze. This worked until it didn’t. Somewhere toward the beginning, i stopped needing writing and started needing the alcohol. Instead of putting my emotions on the page, i drowned them with wine and sweet rum drinks until i couldn’t feel anything anymore.
i started drinking to dull life’s edge and in doing so i blunted my craft.
In the last two years since i stopped drinking, i write more, i write more often, i write better and i am back in the space that made me want to write in the first place. i am less tortured, but i learned that torture wasn’t what made me an artist, feeling was.
i feel too much.
Now that i don’t kill those feeling with alcohol, i’m better at molding them into words.
Here’s what i mean…
Your Heart is a Tomb (a prose poem)
Your mind is a pyramid, your mouth the coffin …
The rubies of your lips are sealed like a casket, silent as the grave that guards the ghosts of your youth. I, I will brave the curses you cast on those who get too close and I will crack your smile, setting free the child cowering inside.
Your skin is a temple, your heart a tomb …
Gold lace plates your cryptic face and locks the case of the key to your safes where you conceal your treasures from the world. But I, I will battle the sphinx and strip away the gilt that envelopes you so I may pierce the secret chambers of your heart and unearth the wealth kept there.
Your body is a shrine, your soul is a grave …
Your eyes are mystic diamonds, captivating rogues and thieves dying to rob the grave treasure you have become. Yet I, I alone will decipher the hieroglyphs of your sacred scars and penetrate the holy places you have buried far from those too shallow to reach that deep.
You will be heaven to me…
Pose your riddles, I will answer them. Set your traps, I will escape them. Let loose your demons, I will battle them or, if this proves impossible, I will sacrifice myself at the foot of your altar and lay myself down in you, my sepulcher. There I will remain, and hide nestled inside where I will let myself be buried alive by your profound good fortune.
That moment when you realize the song you’ve been obsessed with for a week has a reason for making you tear up whenever you hear it.
This version is a Pearl Jam cover of the Mother Love Bone original, as sung by the late Andy Wood. i’m including a fan video of the original studio recording because it expresses what’s going on with me better than i could ever dream of being able to.
What kind of messed up freaky blogger friend am i? The kind that will set up a meeting with me in a bar! It’s a long story but not really.
While on Christmas breaks back in the States i went to a bar for the first time since i can’t remember when.
Not that i’m afraid of bars– i’m more sure of my sobriety than i am of many things in my life–but the thought of spending 4 hours trapped in a room full of people acting like i did when i was drunk is the opposite of appealing. Still, this time i was hanging with my oldest and best friends, one of whom is my sobriety hero (having been on the wagon for well over 20 years), and it was a sports bar so i could watch pro football on the big screen if i got bored and plus of the 7 of us there, only 2 were drinking beer.
i had a great time. i wasn’t even tempted to drink and i was still able to joke around with my buds like i used to in my drinking days. While i have a hard time being sober around acquaintances, i learned i can have a blast around people who know the real me.
To top it off, i met a reader! L / Working On It / 1jaded1 happened to be driving past the city i was in on her way to her home city, so we emailed each other and she googled her way to the bar. i felt bad asking a reader working to stay sober to meet me in a bar, but it was a calm afternoon and she and i only had the briefest of exchanges before she had to hit the road again. Still, it was so nice to put a face to the name and to meet someone who has been such a big supporter here.
All in all, i’m kicking 2013 off right!
What do you think?
What’s your position on those of us in recovery going to bars/lounges? Leave your thoughts in the comment section below and join the discussion!