Wednesday, December 24, 2008

P.S.

The spell check is not working here so I have a lot of misspelled words. Sorry about that.

Taking a Time Out

I am taking a little time out this morning to breathe and have a few moments of silence. Everythin here is great but the constant flow of people can be a litle stressful. I can tell I have not been to an Al-Anon meeting in a week. This is a little time to focus on me and talk to HP righ now. It is difficult living with 4 people when you are used to living alone. At least now I recognize that it is probably not easy for everyone else either. I recognize when I am feeling stressed and out of control. I notice I start to clean. I cleaned my sister's apartment this morning. Not such a bad outlet for my craziness. The old me would have been miserable... started yelling etc.

I constantly have to remind myself that everyone has there own way of doing and dealing with things and my way is not the right way for THEM. Overall everything here is really wonderful. We have been having a lot of fun and there have been no fights. I think it is important that we all pay attention to our bodies and not try to pack too much in all of the time. We decided to stay home and make pizza last night and I am sure that it was the right decision. We were all able to get a good nights sleep.

Here is what I am struggling with today... I just want to complain for a moment and then move on. OK's husband is slow as mollases and has poor time manangememnt. Drives me crazy. We are always late for everything. I have been doing well (and OK does the same) with just letting him do his own thing. We leave for the train and if he misses it oh well. Its Christmas Eve and I am missing my mom. I am missing my mom anyway. I am missing my apartment and my bed and my schedule. The way I do things. This has really helped with appreciating living alone too. A lot of times I complain about being single... today I am VERY grateful for that. I am hating the weather here and how everyone else in my family has straight hair but me and I feel out of place because it is always misty and rainy and grumpy. This sounds so shallow. But EVERYONE in Germany has straight here but me and I sort of feel like a freak. I just feel a disturbance in "The Force" within myself if you will. I am headng for a shower and will take a few moments to talk to God and sort things out.

Today is going to be a wonderful day and overall I am truly grateful for everything in my life. I am so lucky and today I recognize that. I am happy to be able to recognize gratitude and that I am spending the day with my sisters and her husband. I am grateful that I get to experience a German Christmas. I am grateful that even though I am thousands of miles away from home I still have a network of recovery.

Peace, Serenity and Merry Christmas!!!

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Viele Gruesse aus Deutschland

Greetings from Germany! I just wanted to say thank you for everyone wh said prayers for me. I talked to Little L. and worked everything out. We are having so much fun here. The plane ride was long and not very much fun bu we made it safely. HP had some good lessons in Letting go of what I have no control over. Exampe: broken plane ahead of us that caused us to sit on the tarmac for 2 hours before take off. :)

It has been a wonderful visit so far. We have had very full days and the jet lag is pretty much over with. All we have done is eat good food and drink germain beer and this hot wine drink called gluehwein. It's yummy. We had traditional Bavarian German on Sunday night and last night we had potato pancakes and some yummy meat at the Christmas market. The market is really fun with beautifully contsructed houses selling food, presents and wine. Everyone gather together in the sqaure to enjoy each others company. Today we will go to happy hour in Bremen and then come home and cook dinner and decorate the Christmas tree.

It has been nice to spend time with my sisters and to be able to share with them my experience with ACOA. We read the laundry list this morning for Adult Children. We all laughed at how much we related to everything on the list.

I hope everyone has a peaceful and joyful Holiday. Thanks for all the love and support. I have a lot of Catching up to do on blogs. Peace and Serenity.

Today I am grateful for:

My trip to Germany
My family
Christmas
Good food and drink
laughing
HP
Saying what I mean and meaning what I say (most of the time)

Friday, December 19, 2008

Bump In The Road

I had an Al-Anon slip this morning. Right now I am feeling angry, frustrated and a little guilty. I figured I should right about it to get it out. As most of you know I leave tomorrow for my vacation. I am looking forward to the trip very much. I will be going with Little L, who is 19. She has been a source of stress for me as of late and although she is not an alcoholic I consider her one of my currentl qualifiers due to her ACOA behaviors. Honestly, she reminds me exactly of my father (the alcoholic in my household growing up) and sometimes it is very difficult for me to deal with her. She is the only one in my immediate family that does not have a program which means it requires me to work extra hard at my own program when we are together. - Also, hence the tiny bit of stress about 2 weeks in Germany with her.

She is a sophomore in college living on campus. She recently starting dating a new boyfriend and has found a new group of friends. I am happy for her but with this new life she has basically forgotten about her old life.. including family, responsibility and respect, in my opinion of course. I am doing my best to remember that she is only 19 and when I was that age I did MANY things that I wouldn't dream of doing now. It is difficult because she has always acted much older than her age. She loves to be treated like an adult but does not like the responsibilities and consequences that come with it. More recently she has stopped returning my calls, messages and texts. I have been struggling with this. I have huge issues surrounding the situation and much of it derives back to her/our childhood and my mom's lack of parenting for a time. The story is so long and complicated but basically my sister and I are 9 years apart and in a lot of ways we were raised in two totally different families. I lived with active alcoholism and my sister lived with my dad basically gone from her life. When my mom and dad finally divorced, my mom spent the next 6 years pretending like she had no kids. Unfortunately Little L was still very young and was raised by myself and no one. She spent her entire senior year living alone in our house because my mom would spend weekends at her boyfriends house 100 miles north.

That being said, that doesn't exactly jive well with my control freak co-dependant self! It drives me crazy and I have a very hard time letting go. Especially since she is the youngest and my role has always been a second mother to her. Problem is I am not her mother. And I have no right to tell her what she should and shouldn't do. I struggle A LOT! with this. So currently I have been trying to contact her about our trip to Germany and she has not returned my calls. I wanted to let her know to put money in my sisters German account so we wouldn't have to pay extra fees. (Especially since she, in my opinion used her money unwisely through out the year and now has basically nothing saved for the trip). I have still yet to get her to return my call. And ya hooo tonight we are all having our Christmas dinner. Fun times.

I was talking to my mom about it this morning. Which I need to stop doing because she is not my sponsor and she is obviously too close to the whole situation. And of course I got angry and resentful- my favorite defense tool. And of course my mom took offense which in turn made me more angry. And it turned into this whole big saga. And I was like mom this is not about you. Its about me... of course. Ha! So now I feel badly and I should have just blogged here and avoided the whole big mess. I know this post is full of expectations and judgements... I am not writing to be Al-Anon-ed to death. I am becoming aware of all the moving parts and most importantly my part in the situation. I just need some love, and prayers, support and maybe a few suggestions on how to let this garbage go so that I can enjoy my vacation because really I love my family very much and I am so grateful for all the amazing things in my life.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Lots of Gratitude

Today I am grateful for a busy day at work. It helped to make the time fly by.

Today I am grateful that my mommy's present just arrived via UPS. I was getting a little worried.

Today I am grateful that my co-worker brought in leftover chicken cutlets she made for dinner last night. They were super yummy!

Today I am grateful that it is my home ACOA meeting. I am looking forward to volunteering for service again. And also I am happy that I am able to attend one last meeting before I had overseas.

Today I am grateful for one more day of work before I am lucky enough to have 2 whole weeks off.

Today I am grateful for Christmas right around the corner

Today I am grateful that I am getting better and feeling better. I find myself able to use the program more often than not. And even though sometimes it takes a little time I am able to get out of the funk that used to last for days and sometimes weeks.

Today I am grateful for a loving and all knowing God- who guides me when I let him and who still loves me even when I don't.

Today I am grateful for my friends and family who have taken the time out of their busy schedules to see me before Christmas because I will be away.

Today I am grateful that I am able to make better decisions. I am able to let go of things and give them to my Higher Power.

Today I am grateful to reconnect with old friends from my childhood through the lovely network of facebook.

Today I am grateful that K1 took me to see Neil Young on Tuesday night and it was like a spiritual experience. It was an amazing concert and brought me back so many times to my childhood. He was great and he ended his encore with a Tom Waits song and then The Beatles, A Day In the Life. Pretty rad!

Today I am grateful for all my blogging friends- for their love and support and caring.

Today I am grateful that I actually take the time to be grateful. Because for a long time I just thought the world was always supposed to revolve around me (although sometimes I still do)

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Happy Happy Joy Joy

Hi Everyone! I have so much catching up to do. I have been super busy preparing for my trip to Germany. There is so much to get in order before Saturday. I have been cleaning, Christmas shopping, wrapping and catching up with friends before I leave on my two week journey. Everything here is great with me. I can't remember the last time I have said that. I feel such a peace and serenity the last week or two. It's not that I don't still have problems, but my overall attitude, practice of the program and relationship with HP has been helping me with gratitude.

Some quick updates. I had a wonderful day with my mom on Saturday. We went to the Christmas market in Union Square in NYC. We shopped and had lunch. We talked and laughed and caught up. I told her about my program and she talked about hers and what helped her in Al-Anon. We talked about family and K2. She said she has noticed that I seem to be in a better place about the situation. I agreed. I see how completely powerless I am with the situation. It makes it all easier to let go of that way. I spent Sunday home giving my puppy a hair cut and cleaning my apartment. I have noticed that I don't mind spending time along anymore. I went to church on Sunday and made a big pot of chili in the afternoon. I am starting to do things I like instead of always worrying about everyone else.

I am finished shopping and I am just waiting for the rest of my on-line purchases to show up. I started wrapping presents last night and need to think about the mountain of laundry that needs to be done in order for me to pack. I have something to do each night in order to have everything squared away for Saturday.

I helped chair a meeting yesterday afternoon and was asked to qualify when I return from Germany. I have my business meeting on Thursday at my home ACOA and plan to volunteer again for service. I am making connections in meetings and writing out my Christmas cards. Dinner tomorrow with a good friend and celebrating Christmas with my mom, her boyfriend and my youngest sister on Friday night.

God is helping me to see all the amazing things in my life and everything I have to be grateful for. Oh, and it's been snowing her in NY today. :)

Today I am grateful for:

My gratitude
HP
Holiday season
Germany- 4 days!
Everyone here in the blogo-sphere
Steps 1,2,3
SNOW
Oh, and maybe free tickets to Neil Young tonight! He has been my favorite singer since I was like 5 years old

Friday, December 12, 2008

My Faith Part II

This is the good part. Where I finally come around. I wake up and smell the coffee if you will. I hope I didn't offend anyone with part 1. Like I said before, this is uniquely my experience. I do not claim that any church/religion is bad. Certain ones just weren't for me. That is my official disclaimer.

Since returning to Al-Anon I have been struggling to redefine my relationship with HP, as I call Him... God. I grew up in the Christian vain and at this point I do continue to believe in many of those principals. I believe God is forgiving and loving and is not the harsh punisher that I have been taught he is. I struggle with the idea that if you are gay, lesbian, Jewish etc.. you will not go to heaven. I believe that it is between me and God or you and God or whoever and God to work things out when the time comes. I know how I feel and that's all that I can control. I have a hard time with communion and the body and blood of Christ... do you get my point? I still have many questions. BUT, if I continue to pray and grow in my relationship with God all answers will come in time.

This brings me to my new Episcopal church that I have been testing out. It is only a few blocks away and they have many outreach programs in the area. I vote there and I have attended some book fairs and art shows in the space. Almost three weeks ago I gave it a go. It was a little nerve racking because I sometimes get uncomfortable when strangers come up to me and start a conversation. But, it wasn't so bad. The church has a bad, not just a choir, which I think is great because I love to sing at church. I believe that church should be fun. I like to sing, dance, clap hands. The pastor of the church is a woman. I have never heard a woman pastor speak before and it was amazing. I felt connected in a way I have never felt before. There was such an acute understanding. In her sermon she referenced art, literature, architecture and I thought that was great. I consider myself and artist (though on a long hiatus) and her connection were brilliant. Her sermon was about walking through life asleep. How many of us sleep through most of our lives and wake up one day to see how much time has been wasted. She said that there are many reasons why we sleep through life. Fear, addiction, anger etc. She referenced Alcoholism more than once and I really felt that God was speaking through her directly to me. I mean what church talks about alcoholism and drug addiction? No church I attended before. She spoke how important it is for us to be awake, to face our fears and live each day to the best of our ability. I was so moved by the sermon that last week I showed up again.

I talked to some more people and felt a little more comfortable. Her sermon this past week was about John the Baptist. According to the bible Jesus said that John the Baptist is basically as good as it gets. He was and amazing man of God, and that is because he knew two things. 1. he knew that there was a light, and that light was not him. 2. That John the Baptist knew that there was a power greater than himself. Okay, at this point I am freaking out because obviously the pastor knows all about me and wrote this sermon just for me. I was amazed. She was speaking the program to me through Gods word. Now, I am a firm believer that there are many ways to a relationship with a Higher Power. All I am saying is that for ME this was just a miracle. I spoke with the pastor after church to express my gratitude. In our talking I mentioned how I felt that the sermon was meant for me and that I am in Al-Anon etc... and she said to me, that's great. I am in Al-Anon too! How amazing is that? My pastor is in Al-Anon. And she brought me over and introduced me to some other women in the Program. What a miracle. God truly works in amazing ways when I let him.

Obviously that sealed the deal for me. I plan on attending the church regularly. I may have questions but I am certain if I continue to grow in my relationship with God and trust him all of those questions will be answered.

Today I am grateful for:

FRIDAY!
Eight days until Germany
HP
Steps 1,2,3
Miracles

Thursday, December 11, 2008

My Faith Part I

This is my cool coming back to church story. I will preface it with a very short version... okay a not so very short version of why I left. Have any of you notice I like to talk a lot. People tell me that.. hmm.. I have been Catholic, Agnostic, Baptist, Non-Denominational, Evangelical and now apparently Episcopalian. Who knew? My mom grew up evangelical... holy hands, speaking in tongues the holy spirit etc. As you all may know my mom was married very young (15) and dad (17). When she and my dad moved on their own they decided, well I guess my mom decided that it is important not to force children to go to church and practice any specific religion. I think, due to childhood experiences on my mom's part she had(s) certain issues with the church, doctrines etc. -Although that is my mom's story, so I will let her tell it. I went to catholic school from the time I was in kindergarten to 6th grade. It was the best schooling in my town. Of course I wanted to fit in with the other children so I went through the act of baptism and I think even confirmation. After 6th grade I attended public school and Catholicism went out the window. In my teenage years I refuted the mere existence of God and took to exploring many spiritual beliefs. My aunt is how do I say... eccentric to say the least. She introduced me to Buddhism, Hinduism, Witchcraft, Native American Spiritualism just to name a few. Nothing fit.

When I was a junior in High School my parents were going through the toughest time in their marriage. This eventually led to divorce and one of the most difficult times in my life. My mom started participating in a non-denominational church and I met a group of kids from our local Baptist church with a really great youth group. This was a very dark time in my life and and their promise of happiness and salvation intrigued me. I dove in head first to the Baptist church. It wasn't long before I was accepting Jesus into my heart, going to church 4 times a week and preaching the good word to all that would listen. Jump to senior year of HS and my acceptance into the Art Institute of Boston (Great school if any of you know about art) and my deposit for Fall 1998. Hold the phone. This is me forfeiting my deposit and applying to Liberty University because it is not Godly for me to go to a secular school. Actually, it is not Godly for me to be an artist because it is too much of the secular world and not God's will. Fall 1998. I am now in Lynchburg, VA signing away my life for the next year. No rated R movies, no cursing of any kind, no holding hands on campus, no pants, no art...This list goes on! I have always felt that church, faith etc. is the foundation of who I am. Everything I learned as a child/teenager has prepared me to make good moral decisions in my adulthood. I had a very difficult time with the idea of taking away all of our choices right at the time we should be putting the teachings of God to practical use.

I do not wish to offend anyone, I truly believe that everyone is on their own journey, but (come on you knew there was a but) in my experience this year of my life was terrible. I feel like I was in a cult... I was not allowed to express my own feelings. I felt the hypocrisy ran rampant. God's people failed me time and time again. I felt abandoned, judged, abused, beaten and hurt. All in all the experience turned me away from not only the church, but from God. It sealed the deal on religion for me. I wanted no part of God, spirituality, a communion of people.

It is now 2008. Wow, 10 long years! 6 months ago I started going to ACOA. I have been in and out of the rooms over the years, but have never stayed long. When I came back to the Program in July I finally realized how unmanageable my life had become. I am no longer in my early 20's and can not blame my mess on just being young. I am almost 29 years old and I finally realize that its time to make some changes, time to like myself, and time to give this God thing another try. It has been a long and difficult road. Over the last several months I have taken a new perspective on God, on my spirituality... on the bible, and Jesus, and church and all the things I thought I believed. I have come to see that I was not angry at God... I was angry at the people. And people are only human. They do the best they can. With this revelation my ability to trust in God continues to grow. Three weeks ago I decided to check out the church down the street. It is Episcopalian. Although I don't agree with everything I am taking the "take what you like and leave the rest" approach. My relationship with my HP is growing and He will take care of the rest.

Okay, so I want to take some time and gather my thoughts about my new found faith. to be continued...

Today I am grateful for:

Home ACOA meeting
HP
Steps 1,2,3
The opportunity to use my Graphic Design skills at work today.
Spending Christmas with my sisters
The Christmas gift I bought my sister. She is going to love it
Prayer and Mantras that get me through the days
My mom's patience with me
Yummy tuna salad... I made some last night for dinner and had leftover today. I could eat it for wa week straight
Feeling genuinely happy this afternoon.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

A Pocket Full of Goodness

I am feeling unsettled and a little grumpy at the moment so I thought this would be as good a time as any to write about all the good things going on in my life right now. I read my devotional this morning in 'One Day At a Time in Al-Anon' and it talked about learning to see everything with a "fresh eye." I am so quick to point out the negatives in my life that often times I don't stop to appreciate all the happiness.

The most exciting thing going on for me right now is my trip to Europe in less than two weeks. My middle sister lives in Germany with her husband and my youngest sister and I will be flying out there in less than two weeks to visit them. We are going for two whole weeks!!! I am so excited. I have not had this much time off since college. I think it is going to be a really great trip. We leave on the 20th and don't get back until January 3rd. During the middle weekend of our vacation we are flying to Milan, Italy for four days. I have never been to Italy. It is going to be so great. I will be sure to take thousands of pictures to bore you all with when I get back. I am happy that the three of us will be together for the holiday. I am a little sad as well because this will be the first Christmas I have ever spent without my mom and I am 28 years old. I think she is sad too, but happy that the three of us will be together. My mom has her boyfriend and his family to spend the holidays with so I know she will not be alone. We will be spending Christmas eve at my sister's husbands families house. Christmas eve is the big event in Germany. We will decorate the tree, open presents and have a wonderful meal together. German tradition is to have dessert first before any other course. I thought that was silly at first but the change of pace is a lot of fun. There is a great Christmas market (P.S. that picture above is the market, cool huh) in the town my sister lives in and we will get to enjoy that for three days. We will have our own Christmas dinner the next day with just the four of us where will will exchange our own presents. We leave the day after Christmas for Italy. OK and Chatz live in North West Germany so it will be pretty cold there. I always ask her why she couldn't have chosen someplace tropical. Oh well. I am hoping to check out some museums, see some great architecture, eat some great food and drink some yummy beer. Becks is brewed in the town my sister lives. I am very much looking forward to the trip and spending time with my sisters. We are all so different, but yet in our adulthood have really (for the most part) come to accept, understand and love one another.

Another good thing, which I mentioned the other day is my fantasy football league. There are 12 of us in total and I am now in round 3 of the play offs and the only woman left. I totally love football... like don't miss a game, glued to the TV, every man's dream love football. My team name is 'Livin On A Prayer' which seems appropriate because every week I should lose but my team manages to pull it out in the end. I am a huge NE Patriots fan oh and Boston Red Sox. (I am sure I just made tons of enemies right here). But like it or not I was born and raised in NE. This is my first fantasy league and I'm pretty stoked at how well I have done and how much I have learned. I like being able to talk intelligently about the game. I really find it annoying when chics pretend to like the game in order to get a guys attention. No time for that nonsense.

Lastly, and I am almost afraid to jinx it... I have been feeling much better about K2. I still miss him, but this week has not been consumed with thoughts of him and us and what I want to be. We talked last Wednesday for awhile and I think I finally heard him for the first time. I am always so quick to hear the 'I love you' and disregard the BUT that comes after it. I finally hear the BUT and realized how absolutely powerless I am over the whole thing. That has helped immensely over the last week. I have made it my mantra for the last week to say and do steps 1,2,3 every day. Today I am powerless over alcohol, over K2, over anyone but myself. If I try to exert power over them my life will be unmanageable. Today I believe that my HP, God can restore me to sanity. Today I make the decision to turn my life and will over to you, God. I repeat this over and over whenever I need to.

And lastly, I have started going to church again. I have a really amazing HP is totally in control story about church but this post is already too long and I know a lot of you are skimming through (not that I ever do that **big grin**) Church has been good. I am taking the "take what you like and leave the rest approach" right now. It seems to be working.

Today I am grateful for:
Feeling better about my rotten mood after pointing out all the good in my life
Steps 1,2,3
HP
My upcoming vacation
Program
Having money to Christmas shop this year.. actually having money to pay all of my bills on time and not having to worry about checks bouncing
'Six Feet Under'- its totally one of the best shows ever and I can totally relate program to it all of the time
Hump day
This lovely warm weather in NYC. Lovin' it!

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Oh Yeah....

I totally need to say... Sophie in the Moonlight gets the honest scrap award.

So, Sophie consider yourself tagged!

I Am Honest (most of the time)


I have fallen behind on my blogging and reading. I will catch up soon. I have missed everyone. So here goes. Thank you Syd for the honesty award.

Here are the rules:
I have to list 10 honest things about myself, and then pass the award on to 7 bloggers.

So here it is:
1. I have to admit that I like girly pop music- Britney Spears, Kelly Clarkson, Mandy Moore and oh yes even Paris Hilton (don't judge me).
2. I have honestly thought and considered hurting myself (without the intent of death) in order to gain some one's attention and love.
3. When I was a kid I used to think my stuffed animals had feelings. I took turns sleeping with all of them because I didn't want anyone to feel bad.
4. I was born in Riverside, RI and lived in the same house my mom was raised in from the time she was 7. We moved to Tabernacle, NJ when I was 15 and a freshman in High school. I hated my parents for taking me away from everything and everyone I loved. Today, I believe it was one of the best decisions my parents made for me.
5. I am allergic to artificial red coloring. When I was 17 I ate a red freeze pop and had an anaphylactic reaction. I was rushed to the hospital and almost went into shock. I no longer eat anything with red dye and I am supposed to always carry an eppy-pen.
6. I still look for K2's blue SUV when I am walking up my street.
7. I have webbed toes!
8. I was afraid to drive as a teenager. I did not get my licence until I was almost 19 years old. My mom made me.
9. I am not a big sweets person. Most people want dessert after a meal. I almost never crave chocolate. I would much prefer a big bowl of pasta or a plate of rice and beans.
10. I honestly believe that my father will drink until the day he dies.

Okay, I think almost everyone has received this award by now, but there may be a few of you left...


Alright, I think that is all of you. Thanks so much again to everyone here. I don't think I can express in words how much all of you help me. It is so nice to know that I have so many people caring and praying for me. As you may be able to tell I am in much better spirits over the last few days. More about that tomorrow.

Today I am grateful for:

Steps 1,2,3- Daily
Powerlessness
I am the only girl left in my fantasy football league. I am seriously kicking some butt!
Busy work days
Less than two weeks until Germany and the holidays!
Warmer weather here in NY
HP
Knowing that this too shall pass... peace and acceptance

Friday, December 5, 2008

Today I will be okay

Here is a great big thank you to Syd for the honesty award. That is huge for me and means I am doing something right. It is almost time for me to go but I will work on my 10 honest things over the weekend. This will be fun!

In the mean time just a thank you for everyone who has been supporting me. I feel like I have been on a seesaw this week.. and not a fun one. It means so much to me. I would like to say a great big TGIF! to everyone. Have a wonderful weekend... its gonna be brrrrrrr here in NYC this weekend. Here is a very happy and very humble and very grateful gratitude list to start my weekend.

Today I am grateful for:

Powerlessness
My HP, whom I chose to call God
Home ACOA meeting- its like my very own miracle once a week
Connecting with friends
Knowing... really knowing that I have people in my life who love and care for me
Friday! It is my favorite day of the week
Knowing that "this too shall pass"
Learning new lessons
The opportunity to spend my Christmas holiday in Germany with my two sisters
For my job (even when its boring)- and the fact that they are letting me take two whole weeks off over the holidays to go play in Europe
My family, particularly my mom and sisters. They are my heart and soul
The holiday season even if that means annoying tourists in my city
Friends
A better tomorrow
12 Steps
Working at it
All my new blogger friends who have reached out and accepted me just he way I am today

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Thank You

Thank you everyone for your love and support even when and most importantly when I don't want to hear it. It can be quite difficult to face your demons. I know I have a lot of character defects I need to work on, but for today I am proud of myself for at least speaking them out loud. There was a time where I would have never recognized my need for change. Today everything seems just a little brighter. I am happy to be getting my feelings out there... working through them and actually paying attention to my feelings and thoughts. Sometimes I feel that I am complaining or that I am obsessing (usually I am). I realized it doesn't matter though. Writing in this blog is for me... and I can say whatever I damn well please. I don't need to worry about being boring, ugly, unfunny, annoying or any of the other million bad things that can pop into my head. This blog is for me and my healing. That being said I certainly hope that I am able to reach others, help others and I certainly appreciate the love and support. It is just important for me to acknowledge that I am doing this for me and my recovery.

I have never really told my story and I don't much have the patience for it today. Steve-O-roni was asking if I was AA. I am not... although that does not make me a stranger to the many members. I consider myself ACOA, Al anon-er and newly recovering (certainly not newly realized) Cody. My father is my main qualifier. He still actively drinks. My mom was my codependant inspiration. Boy, was a good learner! I have since been involved with and befriended many other alcoholics, addicts and adult children. I am only just now in the last (almost 6 months) beginning to unravel my past and begin the recovery process.

Too warn down to discuss in detail my conversation with K2 last night. All I can say is that it is bringing me one step further in the recovery process. Yesterday was bad, today is a lot better. I could not see the light at the end of the tunnel yesterday... today I can. I will go to my home ACOA meeting tonight and keep plugging along one day at a time.

Today I am grateful for:

A light at the end of the tunnel
My home ACOA
Caring and support from others
Catching up with friends
The holidays
A quick work week
This to shall pass

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Tattle Tale

I haven't been to a meeting in over a week. I went to church Sunday and thought that would do the trick. It did not. I haven't been avoiding a meeting... life has just sort of gotten in the way of things this past week. The holiday, busy at work. And now it's Wednesday. Tomorrow is my home ACOA. I will not miss that. It's really amazing how fast I slip when I am not constantly surrounding myself with recovery. I need to find a sponsor. I have been dragging my feet on this. Just showing up is no longer enough.

Now I really need to tell on myself. I have been avoiding this now and its painful to write. As you all well know I continue to struggle with my relationship with K2. It is this constant source of confusion for me. Almost two weeks ago I ended communication between us. You can read "Moving Forward". Well two nights ago, in a moment of weakness I sent him a text message telling that I am not as strong as he thinks because I miss him and all of this isn't going away. I shouldn't have done it. I should have called someone (here's where sponsor would have come in handy). I should have slept on it. I didn't. He didn't text me back... Of course I was hurt I didn't hear from him and sad that he didn't immediately validate my feelings. A small part of me appreciated the fact that he was being the strong one. Well... he called last night. I was out to dinner and missed the call. As soon as I heard the missed call something inside me knew it was him. He left a message. He asked me to call him back. He said he would be busy for the next few hours and if I missed him he would call me tomorrow.

I opened a can of worms. I want to take his call. I have to go through all of this all over again now. I failed. I just don't get it. I know the drill... I know I have to let go. I know I need to accept things for the way they are... blah blah blah. I don't think anyone can say anything I don't know or haven't heard. Why do I fight it so much? I made this big declaration of moving on and moving forward and not even two weeks later I find myself in a very familiar place. I like here. I must. If I didn't I wouldn't keep coming back. Sometimes I feel like this is all so trivial. Like I have no right to be so involved in this because so many people have bigger problems than me. But I love him. I am in love with him and I just have so much pain associated with our relationship because I thought we would get married and having a loving committed relationship together. I have been in love twice in my life. My first long term boyfriend lasted 4 years. 3 years and about 360 days too long. When he broke up with me I was devastated, but I knew for sure that it was the right thing. He broke up with me because I didn't have the strength to do it myself. I don't feel that way with K2. It feels so wrong. Like its not supposed to happen this way. Ha ha... listen to me. Who am I to say what should happen. God is in control... not me. I need to get that through my thick head.

It doesn't change how I feel. I want to tell him I love you. I am in love with you. I don't want to abandon you. I am in it for the long haul. I don't want to fix you (well sometimes I do, but I'm getting better). I want to love you and be your friend. I want the same from you. I don't want you to make things better. I want you to love me. I want you to be my friend. I want you to support me in healthy ways. I want you to take care of yourself. I want to take care of myself. And I want to lovingly and appropriately take care of each other. I want you to know my true feelings about us... I don't want to be strong. I don't want to be afraid to tell you these things because of fear of rejection. I want to say that loving oneself and loving someone else is a lifelong process. You don't need to be alone until you get there. I want to cry. I miss you. I miss telling you things. I miss not having to say anything. I miss the unspoken understanding. I want you to be able to say today I need my space. And I want to trust you and give you that space. I want to accept you for who you are. I want to know that it is okay to have appropriate expectations of love, honesty and respect. That doesn't mean each of always needing to be right. It doesn't mean a ring on my finger. It doesn't mean needing you to always hold my hand. I support you. I respect your boundaries. I respect that people don't change but if there is a real desire they can compromise. I want happiness. I want happiness for you. I want for us to be able to be happy together.

Today I am grateful for:

Getting through the day

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Life's Lessons

I would like to acknowledge my anger and resentment today. They are two of my most common symptoms of this awful disease. The feelings and behaviors often creep in without me even realizing it. I have always chosen to do things the hard way. I have the attitude that I can do anything... I can do it on my own... and I can most likely do it better than you. You meaning everyone. It has always been that way.

I am the oldest of three. My father is still actively drinking and has been since I can remember. My mom was the perfect co-dependant. My mom and father were married very young. My mom was 15 and my dad was 17. They were married for 23 years. He drank for 21 of those years. Little L and I are 9 years apart. my mom was sexually molested as a child. My father is the child of an alcoholic. It is the perfect breeding ground for dysfunction. in my adult (and not so adult life) dated my own alcoholics or adult children. It truly is a vicious cycle.

Back to anger and resentment. Anger was usually my only form of communication. It played in nicely as I hit teenage-dom and associated myself as a weird-artsy-feminist-liberal-granola-bitch type. I fit nicely into the role of outcast. It allowed me to hurt without really being noticed. I have always held so much anger towards men, my father in particular. I suppose much of it has spilled out into other areas of my life. I saw my mom constantly making excuses for my father all of the time and ended up just like her. Funny how that works.

I have an overwhelming need to take care of people. If I take care of you, then maybe you will love me. But when I take care of you... I also resent you. Resent having to care take. Resent people not being able to take care of themselves. I hate asking for help. I always have. I would rather die trying than actually admit I can't do something on my own. And I resent people who can't do anything. I resent people who can actually ask for help. My mind tells me that I deserve to do everything the hard way. Punishment of sorts. I think I am always right. My way is always the best way, right? When someone doesn't do things the way that I want then it makes me angry. Anger for me is my most comfortable form of expression. Maybe its because no matter how angry I got my father never cared. He never raised his voice. He never argued. He would just sit there. He never cared. My mom used to yell a lot. Never did any good. Maybe that's why I am so comfortable with anger. I can count the times on one hand I ever saw anyone in my family cry. It just didn't happen. And when it did, it was behind closed doors. People crying still makes me uncomfortable to this day. After everything that K2 and I have been through over the last 8 months. I never once cried in front of him. I couldn't. I cried after he was gone. It has always been a sign of weakness.

My mom and I were on the phone today. We were talking about Little L. I forget how young she is sometimes. I know I was a wretch at her age. She is 19. In so many ways she is so much older than that. I have to remember what it was like to be 19. I was upset with some of her behaviors over the holiday weekend and I was discussing them with my mom. She told me that I need to be mindful of my anger and resentment. I can't expect everyone to be like me. I cant everyone to act the way I think is appropriate. I can't be resentful towards the fact that I am a care taker and Little L isn't. We are many years apart and we had very different childhoods. I shouldn't do things for others if I cant have a good attitude about it.

It upsets me that I have this anger and resentment inside of me. It upsets me that I act inappropriate sometimes. But. There is a silver lining to all of this. I didn't freak out on my mom today. I listened to her. I agreed with much of what she had to say. I acknowledged the behavior and I was able to see my part in it. I might not be able to change it all at once but at least I am not denying it. A few months ago I would have freaked out on my mom and cursed her up and down. Today I can see that this is something I need to work on... something I need to be mindful of. This is all really hard. Really really hard.

Today I am grateful for:

Being able to see someone else's side
Constructive criticism
Healing old wounds
Family
Higher Power
20 minutes left in the day
Dinner with my boss last night and his reassurance about my job
Accepting my mistakes and moving on

Monday, December 1, 2008

It Is a 5 Day Work Week


I didn't sleep well again last night. I am pretty sure I was dreaming but I cant remember the details. I used to sleep so well before K2. He must have rubbed off on me. I woke up this morning annoyed at my alarm. It was so nice not being told what to do for those wonderful four days. Alarm went off. Grumpy me got up. Grumpy me got in the shower. Grumpy me got even grumpier when I realized I would be in work in an hour.

I start having anxiety come about 4PM on Sunday afternoon. I have to put it aside because it gets so bad that sometimes it can ruin my whole evening. I hate Monday anxiety. What a drag. I find whenever I am sad or anxious about something I really have to concentrate my positive energy. Not wanting to go to work can easily turn into missing K2, thoughts of self-hatred, depression etc. How easy those feelings can creep in.

Good news. I can usually stop myself now. I give my hurt and pain a few minutes or hours and then put it in a box. Done.

Today I am grateful for:

The program
My family
My trip to Germany
Christmas
P.S. I went to church yesterday. I will blog more tomorrow :)

Friday, November 28, 2008

Thankfulness

I hope everyone had an enjoyable Thanksgiving. For those who had a difficult day it is nice to know that the time has now past and today is a new day. I experienced my most peaceful and serene Thanksgiving of my life this year. It was wonderful. Although there were a few moments of sadness my thankfulness for everything I have in my life picked me up and cradled me through the day.

It was a quiet day. It was me, my mom and her boyfriend and Little L. Everyone just sat back, relaxed and enjoyed the food and company. It was my most sober Thanksgiving. Usually, everyone in my family is drinking (because they are alcoholics) or drinking because they are trying to deal with the alcoholic. This year, we didn't even get through a bottle of wine with dinner. My mom and I did all of the cooking. It was so relaxed and enjoyable. We started early and took our time. We had dinner in courses and didn't rush through. It made the dinner that much more special. We each went around the dinner table and expressed what we are grateful for. This is a bit difficult for me because I have trouble expressing my feelings sometimes to others, but it was well worth it. The food, and the company and the peacefulness of the day was just what I needed. I had a few moments of sadness and self-pity, but mostly I was just so happy that today I can do things differently. I can change. Although it is hard at times... I do have choices.

Today I am grateful for:
A beautiful sunny day
A peaceful and happy Thanksgiving
My family
Spending time with my little sister
Kind greetings from friends, family and bloggers :)
My HP
Choices and change (even when its painful and difficult)
Encouragement from others

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

T.R.U.S.T.

Do they have one of those cool acronyms for the word trust? I hope so. I have been avoiding posting on my blog. Not entirely sure why... not wanting to deal with reality most likely. When I write it down then its all out there. It's alive and real.

I don't want to dedicate this whole post to K2 but I will say that we talked on Saturday. He was understanding and in agreement. He told me he admires my courage and strength for being the one to let go. Is that what I have done? Let go? Because it certainly doesn't seem like it now. I think about him all of the time. Every day on the way to my apartment I walk up the street and look for his car. The blue Xterra. My mind plays tricks on me sometimes and I think he is there... waiting for me. He never is. I wonder if missing him will ever go away. The pain right now is so acute. Mostly it is this dull ache that is always in my heart, but sometimes when I see or hear something the pain becomes so shocking that I have to take a few deep breaths. The only way I can describe it is its as if someone has knocked the wind out of me. It hurts. I love him. He loves me, he told me as much on Saturday. Something to the effect of I have loved you from the first time I met you. If that doesn't break your heart.

I know. My logical brain gets that he has so much he needs to work on. I have so much I need to work on. God is in control. I can TRUST. My heart says the opposite. My heart questions my decision. My heart says I have abandoned him. My heart says to call him. But can you abandon someone who hasn't made a commitment? I know that they are only feelings at it too shall pass... but it is difficult and I hurt. And I love him. And I need to surrender. Some moments I do.

On the other hand tomorrow is Thanksgiving. I will be spending the day with my mom and her boyfriend and my youngest sister, Little L. My mom and I are making all of the food. There will be only 4 of us with enough food for at least 20. We are Portuguese. We can't help ourselves ;) Dinner menu includes, but is not limited to deviled eggs, stuffed celery, squash soup, pear and blue cheese salad, sweet potatoes, mashed potatoes, brussel sprouts gratin, turkey and gravy, Portuguese stuffing, cranberry sauce, caramelized pearl onions and for dessert homemade apple pie and pumpkin pie with caramel topping. See... told you there would be enough for twenty. I am looking forward to spending time with Little L. I haven't seen her in awhile because she is away at college and has a new boy friend. It should be a peaceful and enjoyable holiday. Little L. is 9 years younger than me and I basically helped raiser her for as long I can remember. She is now 19 years old and I have to realize that she is no longer a child and can make her own decisions (whether I agree with them or not). I am actually looking forward to using the tools of ACOA and Alanon. A lot has changed since last Thanksgiving and I am looking forward to a more peaceful serene Kristen. My middle sister, OK lives in Germany with her husband. I am sad that she will not be here for the Thanksgiving Holiday (it's her favorite) but I am so grateful that we are going to get to spend two weeks with her and her husband in Germany and Italy over the Christmas holidays. It is going to be an amazing experience.

Here are a few pictures of the three of us. Everyone says we have the same smile. The resemblance ends there. Little L and I are totally my dads side of the family. OK is all my mom. I used to tell her she was adopted. Not very nice of me.



I am going to do my best to be grateful for all that God has bestowed upon me. There is so much. Each day it gets a little better and I constantly remind myself that I am allowed to feel my feelings. They are mine. That doesn't mean they have to consume me.

I hope everyone has a wonderful Thanksgiving. Peace and Serenity.

Today I am grateful for:

My amazing family
Thanksgiving feast tomorrow
Getting out of work early
Spending time with my family
A loving and trusting God
Sunny days
Home cooking
Laughing
Everyone here who supports me
A safe surgery and speedy recovery for my sister
My home and everything I have in it

Friday, November 21, 2008

Moving Forward

TGIF! It's amazing what a meeting, a decent night's sleep and some praying will do for you. I feel SO much better today. Thanks everyone for your love and support. Yesterday certainly wasn't one of my best days. It is almost time for me to start my weekend. Yay!


I text K2 yesterday evening asking him when he was available to talk. He is going to call tomorrow morning and stop by my apartment. I cant imagine it will take long, but after everything we have been through in the last months (and the fact that he is my mom's BF brother) I feel like it is important that we take the time to talk face to face. Basically, tomorrow I have to tell him that although I love him and care for him very much I cant see him anymore. It is over. I accept him for who he is, but that doesn't mean I have to accept his behaviors for my own. I can no longer be a part of this little dance. I am done looking at what could be, and I am accepting what is. With that acceptance I realize I can no longer spend time with him. I will not heal if I do. I am scared as hell to do this. Men usually break up with me. And then I let it drag on forever. Actually standing up for myself, speaking my feelings and being the one to end things scares me half to death. It will really be over. No going back. I am trusting in God. He knows what is best and I know he will help me through this difficult time. This is truly God helping me break an unhealthy pattern in my life... and although I am sad and fearful.. I have hope because I know it is truly the right thing to do.

Please send your prayers and thoughts in my direction. I am going to need them. Have a wonderful weekend and enjoy the very chilly weather (if you live in the North East).

Today I am grateful for:

Faith in my HP.
The weekend and sleeping in a bit.
Doing what I know is right.
Spending Sunday with my mom cooking and preparing for Thanksgiving.
Relaxing Friday evenings
Lots of heat in my apartment
Hope

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Bad Day

My warm fuzzy feelings of yesterday have all but disappeared and have been replaced by annoyance and a touch of rage. Like.. mean, nasty, spewing venom rage. It comes and goes. When it comes... watch out!

I didn't sleep well again last night. This is day number 3 or 4 now of waking up in the middle of the night with wacky dreams and nightmares. Last night it was dreams of K2. In my dream we were supposed to meet up to talk at a park in the area. Not the area I live in but in my dream it was all so clear. I think I could still draw a map of it right now. We get to where we are meeting and there are other people there. A few guys I have dated casually in the past. They leave and then K2 disappears. I spend the next (what seems like hours) looking for him. Every time I think I have found him he is gone again. I walked around over and over... until finally I woke up. I have no idea how long this dream lasted, but long enough to interrupt my sleep for the night. It seemed like every time I closed my eyes I was searching again. Finally, I got up and stuck my IPOD head phones in and the sound of the waves lulled me back to sleep... in time to hear my obnoxious alarm going off at 6:27. Ugh!

Wasn't that entire scenario ironic. The dream sums up my relationship... most if not all of my relationships. It left me feeling sad, annoyed, betrayed, angry, and vulnerable. All feelings I truly dislike. All feeling I really am trying to work through.

I sent my mom (whom I am extremely close with) and email this morning. It was as follows:

"I am really struggling today. I am so tired. I was up again half the night with nightmares. I kept dreaming about Kevin. We were supposed to meet to talk in a park and I couldn't find him... I kept walking around and around looking for him. I am tired and grumpy and annoyed."

Her response back was:

"I don't know what to tell you...it's truly a bad place to be and only you can change it. I lived in that state with your father for years...to scared to walk away and too sad to stay...equaled STUCK. I will say prayers for you that you have the strength and wisdom to what's right for YOU! I love you, xo"

Which further annoyed me. I know she meant no harm. And I know she is only trying to help but it seriously irked me. First off, I don't feel like I am stuck. I feel like I am finally UNstuck! The problem now is dealing with my actions. I know only I can change it. That is what I am trying to do. If I wasn't willing to change I would still be participating in the dance. I hate being compared to her in that way... because seriously her relationship with my dad was fucked up. I don't want to hear I am just like her. Which, I am sure is exactly what I need to hear. But seriously mom, I don't want to hear about you and dad. I was the one who took care of the kids because you were too depressed to get out of bed. I was the one who made excuses to family and friends for the reason you weighed 95 pounds. I wasn't the one who took enough pain killers to kill a small horse just to get through the day. I haven't had 10 years of therapy 3 times a week. So give me a fucking break. A girl is allowed to have a bad day. I am allowed to be sad. I am allowed to be annoyed. I don't want to hear "I don't know what to tell you" Don't TELL me anything. Say, yeah it sucks.. I understand. I am totally projecting my anger onto her. That is why I did not email back or call. I will THINK now. Go to a meeting tonight, calm down and then be able to process everything more logically and rationally.

I know everyone is sick of hearing about it. I am sick of hearing about it. I am making baby steps in the right direction. I am "feeling" now. Its just a whole lotta feeling for one day. Anger has always been my defense mechanism. My go to tool. Now that its not really an option anymore I am at a total loss. God, I need some help today.

Today I am grateful for:

Home ACOA meeting
Other people in recovery who understand and who are willing to listen to my complain, vent, cry... just get it all out.
Tomorrow is Friday!
HP

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Light At the End of the Tunnel

It's Wednesday already. Where has the time gone? When I was a child time used to stand still. I would complain and my mom would always tell me to wait until I got older... you will be begging for time to stand still. How true. I suppose it is in the same vain as not wanting to go to bed at night and the excitement over the mail. Today, my mail consists of bills and if I could got to bed at 7PM every night I would be happy.

I had a breakthrough this weekend. Well actually I complete act of God. K2 and I are finished. There was no drama, no excitement... just a simple decision (100% through trust in my HP). I can not see him or talk to him. It needs to be over. I am letting go and letting God. I have not shared this insight with him. God has given me a gift. It seems that our time together and our interaction with one another has slowly dwindled over the last two weeks. Originally I had wanted to have a conversation with him. Asking him to please give us another chance, but as the days have gone by I have come to a quiet acceptance within myself. I truly believe it is God taking care of me. Even saying these words out loud before were impossible. I have known for quite some time now that this was what I need to do. I have not been ready. It has been too painful. It came to a head this weekend. K2 was on vacation in Arizona for a week and when he came home we were supposed to get together. I don't want to sit here and point fingers and take his inventory, all I will say is that since his has been home it has become clear to me that I am not on his short list of priorities- and well he isn't so much on mine anymore either. We spoke last on Saturday evening. We were supposed to get together... he decided to head off for a night of drinking with his buddies and I went to a meeting. Best thing I ever did. In the meeting it all became so clear to me. I am trying to explain this but its really not coming out right. I have been so torn up about this for so long and all of a sudden the answer came to me so naturally. I cant describe it, although I don't need to because I know you all can relate. Its like God was just just there. For the first time I get it... this God thing works. I mean I know He has a plan for me. I never really believed that before.

We have not talked since that night. We did not leave things badly. We left the conversation with we would try to get together sometime this week. Its been four days now and I have not heard from him and I have not called him. This too is God working. He knows I don't have the strength to take his calls right now... its almost like K2 knows it too. We will talk at some point and hopefully even become friends. Right now I cant do that. I need time to heal and move on.

I am left with my feelings now. All the residual "stuff" that is left over from the end of this relationship. I have felt lonely, fearful, sad, angry, abandoned, hurt, resentful, disappointed in the last few days. I have also felt calm, peaceful, serene, hopeful, content and happy. I know that it is time to feel these things... and deal with them. I know it will pass and that is completely normal to mourn a death whether it is in the form of a person or a relationship. It is my job to think of one day at a time... keep myself healthy and to mind my own business. I can not let the doubt and hurt creep in. K2 doesn't matter- what matters is me and the actions I take to get better.

This is all really hard... but I finally see a light at the end of the tunnel. It is beautiful.
Today I am grateful for:
A warm home, jacket and clothes and all the sustenance I need during these cold days.
My HP, who I choose to call God.
Trust, faith, strength and courage.
Breaking old patterns and wanting to do things differently.
Sitting with my feelings, the silence and at times the pain.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Memories

My father and I have had some volatile fights. Two in particular stand out in my mind. I was talking to my co-worker and good friend today and it helped me to remember. The first, and really the beginning of the end in my mind... was on Mother's day when I was about 16 or 17 years old. Traditionally Mother's Day is known for being a total disaster in my house. Something awful always happens. I was cleaning for my mom and the vacuum broke. I asked my father to fix it and of course he ignored me. As he usually did. Something just snapped inside me and I starting just screaming at him... screaming like I have never done in my life. His lack of interest just broke my heart and infuriated me that he didn't love my mom enough to even help me so I could do something nice for her. My sister came down the stairs and saw me screaming and she immediately fell to the ground and blacked out. My dad just sat there on the couch, looking at me and laughing. Laughing. It was the first time I physically raised my hand at him.

The next big fight we had was at the dinner table. I asked him to stop slurping his soup and he refused. It's funny how I look back now and see how silly the action was. It is clear that my anger was built up from all the previous experiences seething at the top just waiting to boil over. He was laughing again. Always mocking me... so I screamed (again, like I always did) and told him I hated him and 'Fuck You' and ran out of the house. It was less than 30 degrees that night with 2 feet of snow on the ground. I just left... I didn't know where I was going I just knew that I couldn't stay there. He didn't go after me. I walked 2 miles in the snow with no coat before my mom and her friend found me. I was shivering, and crying and was turning blue at that point. We never talked about it again. He never so much as mentioned it to me. What I did was wrong and disrespectful... but in my mind he never deserved any respect and quite frankly I don't think he cared. What bothers me the most about that night is my 8 year old sister at the time sat outside talking to me begging me to come back inside because she thought I was hiding in the bushes afraid. That is just so fucked up. I apologize for the foul language, but how messed up is that? What kid should have to do that? I don't remember anything happening after that... we all just pretended like it never even happened.

When I was 16 my mom decided to have an intervention for my father. We had to meet with a councilor and write letters about the things my father had done to hurt us etc. because of the drinking. The people included my mom, my two sisters, my mom's parents, my dad's father and his oldest brother. The night before the intervention we all gathered at some cheap hotel to rehearse and review for the following day. **Insert a little about me. I am tough. I am the rock. I am the one who can and will do anything that needs to be done. I am the one who makes fun of you for all your icky feelings. I don't cry (in front of people). I have a hard exterior and like to make people think that nothing ever bothers me. I set myself up for disappointment so I am never actually disappointed.** In actuality that is such a load of BS. I am super sensitive, hurt easily and internalize almost everything. We all went around the room reading our letters. I hated my father and said it out loud at every opportunity. This was my revenge. This letter of all the ways he broke me. It came time for me to read my letter. I couldn't do it. I cried so hysterically the words would not even form. The next day my mom woke my father out of a drunken stupor early in the morning. He came downstairs to all of us sitting there in a circle. He was basically forced to listen to us and he was carted off to rehab where he stayed for three days and checked himself out. He disappeared for two weeks after that. He called my mom from somewhere in South Carolina... he was soul searching. He didn't know when he was coming back.
That was not the first time he abandoned us... and it certainly wouldn't be the last.

I don't know what made me share these stories... I guess I need to just start getting them out there one day at a time.

Have a great weekend everyone. Peace and Serenity.

Today I am grateful for:
Making it through
Alanon/ACOA
God

Thursday, November 13, 2008

The Three C's

I didn't cause it, I cant control it, and I cant cure it. This is my mantra for the day. What a blessing from God. I see many blessings from God lately. I am making a point to be more observant of that... seeing the glass as half full instead of empty. I called K2 today just to say hello and he was just in a very bad space. I actually thought for a minute something was really wrong (like life and death wrong-he is a detective). I was happy to hear that it was just emotional/work stuff. As soon as I heard him my first reaction was to try to fix it- do something, say something to make it better. Great news! Nothing I can do about it. If he is sad, upset etc. that is his responsibility. It has nothing to do with me. I didn't cause it, I cant control it and I certainly cant cure it. I suggested he might feel better after a meeting and I invited him out to watch the football game with us tonight and then I hung up. I didn't beg him to tell me what was wrong, I didn't ask him if it was because of me, I didn't try to make him feel better. I told him I can relate. I told him yesterday was a hard day for me so I went to a noon meeting and afterward I felt much better. I told him that I would like his company tonight. And then I told him to have a good day and I would talk to him later. That is a huge Yay! for me.

I still had the same initial thoughts. I still wanted to text him something nice and sappy after we hung up. I still had a few moments of feeling like it was all about me. But I was able to hang up on pain today. I feel much better. I will have a fun time tonight and recognize that everyone has their own feelings and everyone has a bad day(s). It is not my responsibility to step in and make everything better.

I also talked to my sister today. OK has recently started attending Adult Child meetings in Germany where she is living. It has been such a blessing. She has been feeling so much better and I can already see a difference in how she handles her daily life. I am so appreciative because it is allowing us to really understand one other on a whole new level. Areas where the both of us never could see eye to eye have now brought us closer together. I am so grateful for a family where recovery is talked about and encouraged. I am thankful for the tools of this program... and I am so happy that I am able to share them with my mom and sisters. Thank God for this program.

Today I am thankful for:

My HP
My home ACOA meeting
My sister and the continued growth of our relationship and understanding of one another.
Getting together tonight with my friends to watch the Patriots play the Jets.
One day at a time
Improvements... even if they are small

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

A Long and Winding Road

It has been busy here at work over the past week or so and I am one of probably five people left who does not have the Internet at home. I know, you cant believe it. Honestly its refreshing... I just got cable and that is bad enough. The last thing I need is 24/7 access to the world wide web. I am blessed to have a job where I have full Internet access and plenty of time to use it. That being said, when Big Bad Boss (who really isn't so bad at all) is in town I have zero time to play. He is now gone, and I now have time to play.

I have finally had time to catch up on blogs and do a little extra reading. I am so grateful for everyone here... I have recently been reading up on every one's stories and I am so humbled and grateful at God's Awesome Power. There have been so many times I have said to myself "my father will never be able to get sober," and maybe he wont but your stories and God's love give me hope. I do not pray for anything other than acceptance and God's will, but I find it amazing to see how God has changed so many of our lives. Whenever I am sad, depressed and feeling pity for myself I will make an effort to remember where I came from and where I am now. So, thank you so much to everyone for sharing your experience, strength and hope.

Some things going on in my life right now. First off, I feel like my posts are just so in eloquent. I usually have so many thoughts swimming around in my head that I am lucky to get them all out never mind make them look and sound pretty and witty. That being said I am trying to be gentle with myself. I am me and me is just fine for today. Please bare with my sometimes disconnected thoughts. There are a few phrases and slogans that have been playing around in my head this week. One being 'My relationship with others' do not define me' and 'Just for today I will not dial pain.' I must say that to myself 100 times a day. I am not always successful either. But, I am more successful than I used to be. Before I pick up the phone or send a text I say to myself "can I deal with the outcome" What a huge success for me. I don't like to give myself credit. If I am not perfect at it 100% of the time, it means I have failed. I am more successful at certain things with certain people.

Here are some areas I would like to give myself credit for. K1 and I have not been spending so much time together. My eyes have been opened to the fact that although he is a good person he is not always healthy for me. K1 brings out many of my Codie traits. Traits I don't particularly like in myself. We talked for the first time in awhile on Monday evening. I have to say that there was a time where I thought we would be best friends and lovers forever- like I needed him in my life and thought what would i do without him. Lately, I haven't felt that way. I still care for him, but through the grace of God I have been able to detach and let go. Back to Monday evening... we talked. I acted completely opposite to how I am talking now. I did my typical manipulative, all about me, love me, selfish self-centered act. As I was doing it, I realized I was doing it and I asked myself why I was doing it because its not how I really feel. It pisses me off that I would act this way but at the same time I am just so happy and grateful that I was able to identify this behavior. Now I can stop myself from doing it again. We made plans for this evening. You know what, I woke up this morning and just had this overwhelming feeling that spending time with K1 tonight is just not healthy for me. The old me would have felt too guilty to cancel. I did it. I told him that I am just not feeling up to going out this evening. I would rather go home, go to the gym and make a healthy dinner. I cant believe I am saying this. The old me would have been fearful of a night alone, wanting someone to stroke my ego and make me feel better about myself. I will not let others define me. I am hanging up on pain today... on that front at least. I need to acknowledge these small triumphs. Creating healthy patterns even when sometimes it can be painful.

Another good thing. I have been struggling with praying and meditation lately. I read the other day that when I am focusing on a problem or painful thought that I should stop and focus on something good for one minute. I have been focusing on the ocean and the waves. Yesterday I purchased a 'Sounds of the Ocean' soundtrack. I started listening to it during my meditation time and it already helping me focus, breath and see the beauty of God in the sound. I know all of these steps are small, but they are more than what I was doing a few months ago. Very slowly one day at a time... with plenty of difficult days in between I am making healthier choices.

Now that I have talked about some of the good things in my life... I would like to bring up a very recurring theme. My relationship with K2. Endless struggle of good vs. evil. Yesterday marked four months to the day that K2 and I broke up- which might I add is almost the same amount of time we dated. Yet, I still find myself entangled in this mess. Do let me fool anyone, I see my part. I am aware... I am all too aware. Awareness with no acceptance. I am always stuck in what could be. What could be, is not and therefore is. He was away on vacation last week in Arizona. No talking to him was easy for me. He was gone... 2,000 miles away. Easy! For my mind that is reasonable. K2 is away, out of sight, out of touch.... doable. I wish he would just move away forever. I wish he told me he hated me and that he never wants to talk to me again. It would make it so much easier. Why do I have to be the strong one? Why do I have to be the one to walk away? It sucks. I hate it. Not being with him is awful, but this "thing" we have right now is awful too. He came home yesterday. He called me from the airport (of course). Why does he do that? I want him to do that. And I don't want him to do that. Can't he read minds? Do I actually have to speak the words out loud? Why is it always just enough? Don't get me wrong... he is a wonderful man. That's why I love him. He is a wonderful Adult Child with severe abandonment issues that has told me he loves me but doesn't know if he sees himself with anyone, never mind me. Oh, but if he does see himself with someone that someone would be me he just doesn't know. Hahaha... I am actually laughing at how ridiculous that and I sound. I was in a much needed midday meeting today and the speaker said, "You don't marry a fixer-upper." That really resonated with me. Is that what I am trying to do? Of course I am trying to control the situation. Of course I know HP is telling me I need to let go. Of course I know that it is God's will and not my own. Today, I am having trouble with that. I know it is not going to all come at once. This is a slow gentle program. I will read what I have written above and be grateful for all the areas where I see change and I will continue to pray for courage, strength and willingness to change in the areas that I am not currently able to.

Today I am grateful for:

Midday meetings
Each new day
My HP
Healthy choices
My mom and all of her support in everything I do

Monday, November 10, 2008

Mondays...

I have so much to say, but so little time. My boss is rarely in the NY office so generally I have lots of times on my hands. He has been here for a week now, so until he is gone I cant seem to find time for more than a gratitude list. Although I am thankful because being busy is way more interesting than being bored.

I would just like to say... new and old friendships... God works in great ways.

Today I am grateful for:

Busy days at work
A merciful, gentle God
New friendships
SUN!
Motivation for the gym
Friends who express their gratitude for our friendship... and being able to express that gratitude back.
10 minutes left of work
The Program

Thursday, November 6, 2008

It's A Quickie

Super busy day today. I like it that way. Before I know it the day is over.

Quick updates... I am applying for new jobs. I am currently an Executive Assistant and well I basically dislike almost every moment of it. I am thinking of going back to school, but in the mean time I am applying for nanny positions and personal assistant positions. Say a prayer for me if you get a chance.

Also, I have my home ACOA meeting tonight. I love this meeting. I have to skip out a little early because I am cooking dinner tonight for a friend I havent seen in a long time. Very exciting.

Oh yeah... and tomorrow is Friday. Yay!

Today I am grateful for:

My home ACOA meeting
This program
One day at a time
Dinner tonight with Chris
Friday
The Office is on tonight!
Not letting the fear take hold of me
My HP
My mommy had a safe flight home

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Enjoy The Ride...

I am not entirely sure I made the right decision, but Barack Obama is now our new President of the United States. I pray that as a Nation we are able to come together and move forward. I am putting my trust in my HP, in our new president and in the people of the United States. I am proud that I was able to vote in the election yesterday and I am thankful that I do not have to fight for that right nor fear for my life by performing that simple task.

Congratulations to Obama and buckle your seat belts and enjoy the ride...

Today I am grateful for:

Change
My feelings
My new found motivation for the gym
A good home cooked meal
A lazy night in front of the television
To be an American
My sister
Choices

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Acceptance Is Key

I voted this morning before work. And although I have my opinions on whom I think will do the best job, I feel that it is most important that American perform the act of voting. It is our right, our duty as American Citizens. Too many people have fought and continue to fight for me to have this right.

This brings me to my younger sister, Little L. She is 19 years old and this will be her first presidential election. It is no secret that Little L and I don't entirely see eye to eye politically, but I have always felt that above all else it is most important that she gets out there and does it. Honestly, throughout most of this election process I have been undecided. It wasn't until fairly recently I made up my mind. Little L made it very clear she is an Obama fan. Which is perfectly fine, but to say our conversations were heated would be an under statement.

So, Little L and I have dinner on Saturday evening. I say to her, "are you excited to be able to vote for the first time?" Her response, "I'm not voting." Honestly I was shocked and well... not very nice either. I couldn't believe that after all the conversations we have had and how important this is she would just decide not to vote. Little L says she didn't get a absentee ballot and she doesn't feel like traveling home from school. I was so disappointed. It really threw me. I had to really step back and use the program. The old me would have ridiculed her and scolded her and yelled at her for not doing it. The new me- well still had to put my two cents in but, I was able to let it go and enjoy the rest of our time together. I expressed to her how important I think it is and then let it rest. This is SO difficult for me. I always know whats best for everyone, right? That has always been my role. Learning to accept things for how they are isn't always easy.

In other news. I am having dinner with K2 this evening in his town. This is something I have not done since we broke up. I am a little nervous and anxious about the whole thing. I am taking baby steps every day towards what I know I have to do in regard to our relationship. It makes me sad and I am just not ready yet. Please keep me in your prayers- my HP will give me the strength to do what I need to do.

Today I am grateful for:

The right to vote.
To me an American Citizen
Yummy dinner
The seasonable weather
HP always knowing whats best

Monday, November 3, 2008

I Made a Boo Boo

I had a bad work experience this weekend. I am still not over it in my head. Talk about not being able to let things go. It seems better to me in my head to continue to punish myself for mistakes. Talk about a good lesson in the The Serenity Prayer.

I am an Executive Assistant for the EVP of a very large company. (So not my cup of tea if you know me at all- I have always been really artsy and lack that great attention to detail that seems to be oh so necessary when taking care of someone that basically can't even feed themselves). It was my duty to send a FedEx First overnight delivery to Big Boss's house for Saturday delivery on Friday. I do all the work- print the memos, make the packets etc., and create the FedEx slip online. All good to go. Nope! Me lacking the attention to detail I mentioned above got so stuck on the 1st over night thing that I didn't realize that 1st over night isn't available for Saturday delivery. I leave thinking everything is okay. Go out for Halloween with friends (which was lots of fun- thanks everyone for the well wishes) and didn't get home until 2AM. Saturday morning comes around and I wake up around 7AM to use the bathroom and I see on my Blackberry that there is no delivery status email. I then go straight into a panic attack and play back yesterday's events in my head. Come to think of it I never clicked the "Saturday delivery" option. Crap! Now its 7AM I have had 4 hours sleep- after a few cocktails the night before and I realize Big Boss isn't going to get his package on time. I call FedEx, all the while praying I was mistaken or perhaps they could perform a miracle. They say call back in an hour and half at 9AM when they open. This really sets me off. At this point I am begging God, reciting The Serenity Prayer over and over and pacing my apartment.

I made a mistake. No other way of getting around it. I could try to lie, but really that is going to get me nowhere. Might I add that there was a time in my life that I would have absolutely lied (coming to realize its a 4th step character defect). But, really promptly admitting my mistake and making amends was my best option. I emailed my boss stating I made a mistake and that I was going to the office to fax/email etc. everything to the other assistant to make sure he had everything he needed for Sunday's meeting. I then got up and went to the office immediately (basically to punish myself for my mistake). I say I was punishing myself because it was 9AM on a Saturday morning and the meeting wasn't until the next day at 2PM. I was faxing the memos to the Virginia office for the assistant to print on Sunday. I could have gone at any point in the day on Saturday but I felt the need to go then. I also felt the need to deny myself any breakfast or coffee. My mind was consumed with the mistake I made and I was unable to do anything else. I feel so much shame and guilt for this mistake I made. I was/still am so afraid of my boss- his reaction, his disappointment, the possibility of him yelling at me, maybe even firing me. I am projecting every bad feeling I have about myself onto this situation. And I am still doing it. I feel like such a failure. I do this kind of stuff. I don't know why. I make mistakes. Why? It doesn't seem like others do. I don't even know why I do it. I compare myself to others. Why am I so non-observant? Why don't I re-check everything again? Mistakes like that shouldn't happen. I disappoint myself. I beat myself up. I have difficulty forgiving myself. I am still fearful that I will be yelled at when Big Boss comes into the office this week. It is absolutely awful. And the worst part is that I have been beating myself up over this incident for two days now, and I still feel guilty.

What a horrible disease this is. I have been fighting off sadness and depression for a week now and this incident has not helped. I pray that by talking about it, going to meetings and trying to be gentle with myself I will be able to let this go and learn from my mistakes. Everyone makes mistakes, right?

Today I am grateful for:

Midday meetings
Alanon slogans

Friday, October 31, 2008

Happy Halloween

Happy Halloween to everyone. I am very excited for 5PM today. Some friends and I will be dressing up and going to the Annual NYC Village Parade this evening. It is always crazy and lots of fun. This year I am dressing up as a police officer. I bought my costume last night- its half home made, half store bought. Wow, its amazing to me how busy Halloween stores are the day before the holiday. People were actually waiting in line just to get it. Anyway, I am excited and I think it is going to be a lot of fun. I need a good fun night out with the girls. We will take lots of pictures I am sure.

Today I am grateful for:

Friday!
Halloween with my friends
Beautifully warm falls days
My HP

Thursday, October 30, 2008

This seems to sum up everything I need to say today...


"Comes the Dawn"


After awhile you learn the subtle
difference

Between holding a hand and chaining
a soul,

And you learn that love doesn't mean
leaning

And company doesn't mean security,

And you begin to learn that
kisses aren't contracts

And presents aren't promises,

And you begin to accept your defeats
With you head held up and your eyes open,
With the grace of woman, not the
grief of a child

And you learn to build all your roads
On today because tomorrow's ground
Is too uncertain for plans, and
futures have
A way of falling down
in mid-flight.

After awhile you learn that even
sunshine
Burns if you get too much.

So you plant your own garden and
decorate
Your own soul, instead of waiting
For someone to bring you flowers.

And you learn that you really can
endure...

That you really are strong
And you really do have worth.
And you learn and learn...
With every goodbye you learn.

-- Veronica Shoffstall
Today I am grateful for:
My home ACOA meeting
Trying
K3 sharing her lunch with me
Halloween
Trusting HP