Whine Tasting.

Whine Tasting.

Greetings,

This weekend was a weekend I have been thinking about, planning, and dreaming of since I was a young girl. It was my best friend’s bachelorette party. It was everything that we said it would be. Sunny, full of laughter, and wine tasting. Or so I heard. I chose not to go. It is in these defining moments that we realize so many things. We realize that we are different. We realize we are going to miss out on monumental milestones sometimes. We realize that feeling left out is a small price to pay to stay sober. We realize that acknowledging that in itself is growth. I know myself enough to know that going to a sunny vineyard with a group of lovely women I would want to feel that warmth that wine used to bring me and the sense of camaraderie that comes with it. But I know that isn’t how the story ends for me. It always ends in taking it too far. What some would say is just a weekend of fun would in reality be the unraveling of my spiritual growth and 100 days of sobriety. I wish I could say that I am floating around my pink cloud wrapped in warmth and fuzzy feelings about my decision but I’m not. I choose to stay 100% honest and candid about my recovery. I am SO beyond happy that my beautiful bride to be and best friend had a beautiful weekend. I do NOT feel self pity or that I wish the girls could have altered the plans to tailor to my “special needs” (LOL). I suppose anyone would feel a little sad in these moments.

It’s bittersweet that I have gotten to the point to stay true to my recovery, but also sad that I now understand I will be sitting out several dances in life. Where the rest of the bridal party get’s to fully enjoy these moments I have to encourage from afar. On the day of the wedding they will have nothing on their minds but supporting their friend, doing their makeup and hair, and enjoying the moment. I will have to be vigilant in my fight against my disease, planning an emergency “exit strategy” if the triggers become too much, facing another sober milestone- a WEDDING in SOBRIETY, and of course, enjoying this wondrous occasion.

I am not trying to paint the picture that I am ungrateful. I am not trying to ask for praise or sympathy. I am simply nodding my head to a truth I have learned to accept. Acceptance and honesty is such a huge part of my journey. When the truth started to sink in that I am a real life alcoholic and I should do everything in my power to abstain from alcohol and drugs to live the best possible life I can, I called my sponsor in shock. I told her I accepted this truth now, and I thought it would be a lot easier of a pill to swallow. She told me acceptance isn’t always easy. We won’t always like the things we have to accept. The point is that we are accepting them.

So I guess that is where I stand right now. I don’t have to like what I accept but I accept it. Because of my willingness to accept and stay strong I am now 100 days sober. This is the first time in my journey I have hit triple digits.

With humor, grace, and guidance I have been able to successfully abstain from all mind altering substances and I intend to continue to do so.

And you know what…maybe I didn’t get to go wine tasting with my friends. Maybe I won’t get a champagne toast at my wedding.  Maybe I will never go wine tasting again in the Hamptons or sip vodka sodas on a flight. All these things I envisioned doing might not get to take place now because of recovery but a lot of things didn’t come to fruition like I thought they would in this lifetime. I am not a lawyer. I didn’t have 3 kids by 25. I’m a 30 year old divorcee with cats. I didn’t lose 5 pounds last month. Who fucking cares. You know what I do have? Serenity, grace, humility, bonds of friendship stronger than ever, a career, a goal, and a life worth living.

 

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Climb Your Mountain & Heal.

Climb Your Mountain & Heal.

Happy Sunday!

I am happy to say that I have picked up the pen again and now, the laptop. I was so worried that my drive to write had been quashed entirely. I fancied myself a regular Hemingway, only capable of writing with some wine in me.

I have no clear purpose for this blog entry today. I am just going to let my fingers dance across the keyboard as directed by my thoughts.

My first thoughts are how insane and emotional my dreams have become. Last night I had a “using dream” except it wasn’t me who was using. It was my brother and boyfriend who are both in recovery. I was heartbroken. Shattered. Seeing the glazed look in their eyes, the mean spirit, the brokenness returning. I felt helpless. But I also felt 100% sure I didn’t want that. I felt no desire to drink in my dream. I don’t think our dreams are meaningless and without a message. I think this dream is pointing me in the direction of Al-anon. I have been meaning to go for quite some time now. Although my loved ones are still clean and sober, that feeling of no control and helplessness scared me enough to know that I still allow other’s actions to control part of my emotions.

I have also had this overwhelming sense of calm and gratefulness. I spoke about it a bit in the last blog. I came to AA a year ago this month. With 93 days sober you can do the math on how long it took for the message to stick. I never believed before that recovery could really be mine. I had no faith in my strength, no strength to pick myself up and I truly believed I was one of those hopeless cases the big book talks about. What I did know however is that I had found my people. I relate to the members of Alcoholics Anonymous because I am an alcoholic. I listened to their stories and they were mine as well. They held my hand and kept chanting “keep coming back, it works if you work it, and we are all worth it.” I stopped listening for many months at “keep coming back.” If I did ANYTHING right, it was that I kept coming back. I may have come in with a hangover. I may have went to a meeting with a bottle of wine in my trunk, but I kept stumbling in. When I was finally completely ready to give myself over to them, they picked me up and loved me. They had faith in me when I had none. I completed my first three steps with my new sponsor and I felt the click. This time it was CLICKING.

I don’t want to dismiss my recovery efforts before the click came. I had walked the road of recovery but I was still not entirely ready and willing. I knew I WANTED what they had, but I still had a few more dances with the devil.

Today I do not shun any parts of the program. I don’t pick and choose the parts I want. I use the tools I have been freely given. I pick up the phone to call my sponsor. I happily attend meetings and actively listen. I share my problems and solutions as they relate to alcohol and try to spread the message, not the mess. The best compliment I have received as of late was from my sponsor. She told me “you are going to be a great sponsor.” To me that is a huge honor. The girl who sat in the back of AA, not sure this recovery life could be mine, was told I would one day be a great guide to help other women.

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Coming up to my 5th step I have learned a lot about myself. I have learned that in every resentment there lies a little blame in me. Nothing gives you back power and control more than owning up to your faults in a matter. I know that sounds so backwards but when it comes down to it, we are all only in control of our own actions. When I see my wrong, I can take control by cleaning up my part of it. That is FREEDOM.

I am also learning the power of the word “No.” I can create boundaries and increase my peace by not spreading myself so thin. I have learned to say no without an explanation. I listen intuitively to my body and spirit.

I will forever be a work in progress and I have scarcely scratched the surface. I have accepted though that like so many things, we must uncover the wound to allow it to heal. I have begun the process of ripping off the dressings that have covered my soul to allow the wounds to breathe and heal. I know the discomfort is temporary. I know that when a new wound forms I have my fellows to pick me up and a plan of action to heal. I can’t for the life of me determine why this recovery thing seemed so scary and daunting. It is freeing.

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& On Her 88th Day Sober, She Made Amends.

& On Her 88th Day Sober, She Made Amends.

Good morning and happy June! I have been itching to write for DAYS and for the first time in my life truly understand the meaning of working to the bone. I have had so many beautiful thoughts drift in and out of this head and now they are gone somewhere in the universe and not on paper, but that’s ok.

First and foremost, a little update on the recovery roller coaster. I am 89 days sober. I have NEVER made it to 90 days sober since my drinking career began. I know now that the celebration for recovery milestones does not only cover abstinence from the drug of choice, but the spiritual growth and serenity. Yesterday I had a moment where I got to come full circle.

My younger sister had two bottom wisdom teeth removed. She was not put under and was in extreme pain from the surgery. The dentist’s office knows our family well and our history of addiction and  took it upon themselves to not prescribe her opiate pain killers. She asked with a mouth full of gauze for medicine to help with the pain and they still did not write a prescription. They gave her some Ibuprofen and sent her on her way. For those of you not aware, my brother is a heroin addict in recovery and we have obviously had some traumatic experiences with that. My sister was crying and in agony for hours so I took her to the emergency room. This is a smaller medical facility and we were in and out and well taken care of. This happened to be the hospital my sister took me to 88 days ago. The staff had to call security on me, I mistreated the staff horribly, I have barely any recollection of this and ended up leaving that night. It’s been in my head since my recovery took off that I wanted to go back and apologize to these nurses whose job I made incredibly difficult. In this roundabout way I got to make amends. I got to tell them I am almost 90 days sober with that evening being my last drunk. They were so lovely to me and it was honestly such a humbling and beautiful moment.

Prior to this event on Sunday, June 3rd, my brother and I went to a concert together. This event that might seem small to some, was monumental for us. For the first time we were both completely drug and alcohol free. We weren’t arguing, we weren’t sick. We were just a brother and sister enjoying a concert together. Laughing, joking, and talking about life.

In my personal life there has been a lot of stress and problems that are a direct result of drinking. The aftermath has followed me into my recovery. I am tested and challenged mentally and physically everyday to stay sober, just like everyone else in recovery. I know that to drink is to unravel all the progress I have made on a spiritual level. Despite all the challenges and the fear of the unknown to come I have to cling to my faith. The big book talks about having faith under all conditions. I have to believe that whatever happens I will be taken care of by my higher power and my family in recovery. To have peace of mind and serenity during chaos is something I never dreamt I could have, but I do. Not everyday is a walk in the park and even though the gifts of recovery are raining on me, it does not entirely remove the desire to numb out the stress and pain. I have to remain vigilant against this disease because it is always hiding around the corner, ready to seduce me.

I want to end this blog with an outpouring of gratitude. If it weren’t for this program of recovery I would not know peace. I would not be able to see the light in the midst of darkness. I could never begin to count the blessings my life has been littered with. I could never see the growth and change in myself; rather I would only be counting my flaws. I wouldn’t know how to own my mistakes and correct them.  I am overflowing with gratitude in a situation that would normally be a breeding ground for hate, resentment, excuses to use, and bitterness. All of this is freely given to me and all they ask in return is that I spread the message to those that still suffer.

Thank you AA. Thank you universe. Thank you for not giving up on me when I wanted to give up on me.

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Keto My Way.

Keto My Way.

As many of you know, I have made some big (and small) life changes all with the singular goal in mind- to better myself mentally and physically. Part of that journey has led me to Keto. I started dabbling in Keto almost a year ago. I have had 11 months of trial and error, research, and a lot of good meals in between. I have done strict keto and lazy keto (if you are thinking, “what??” don’t worry, I will get into that later.)

If you have googled Keto you will get millions of hits. Blogs, support groups, anti-keto pages, and conflicting information. I am by no means a keto expert. I would also like to drop my disclaimer right now that I am in no way, shape, or form a medical professional and if you have reservations or health concerns you should always consult your physician first.

The first thing you need to understand is that Keto is not just another diet. The Keto way of eating (from here on out will be abbreviated to WOE) puts you in a metabolic state of Ketosis (not to be confused with ketoacidosis).

ke·to·sis
kēˈtōsəs/
noun

MEDICINE
  1. a metabolic state characterized by raised levels of ketone bodies in the body tissues, which is typically pathological in conditions such as diabetes, or may be the consequence of a diet that is very low in carbohydrates.

What happens when your body is in Ketosis and why would you even want to be in Ketosis???!!! Since I am going to be throwing A LOT of information at you and science isn’t my forte I will simply put it this way: when you are in Ketosis your body is burning fat instead of carbs.

Are you still with me? Ok, now we can get into the Keto WOE.

1.) Where to start? MACROS. 

Many diets are focused primarily on counting calories and avoiding fat grams. Keto is the opposite. The rule of thumb with keto is 20 NET grams of carbs or less/day. Carbs are a limit, fat is a lever, and protein is a goal. When we say fat is a lever, we mean you eat more fat to prevent hunger and fuel ketosis. But how do you begin to know what your macros should be? I personally used the following guide: Ruled Me: Keto Calculator

Now that you know what your macros should be you need a way to track them. If you intend to do “lazy keto” you don’t need to follow this step, but I HIGHLY recommend tracking macros for best results.

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2.) Tracking your food intake 

There are a ton of apps to track your calories and macros. I used to use My Fitness Pal. If you already have that you can use that. If you want an app that is more geared towards Keto, I prefer “Carb Manager”. It is a free app and you can select “the ketogenic” diet. You can then manually add your macro goals or it will do an estimate for you based on you selecting Ketogenic Diet. Carb manager will also calculate your NET carbs for you which is a plus for me.

Some people on Keto do NOT track their calories. I have done it both ways. When I track calories and adjust it with weight loss, I am more successful. The choice is up to you. If you think you will be overwhelmed start with tracking macros only. The golden rule, the only one you must follow to (usually) stay in Ketosis is 20 NET GRAMS OF CARBS OR LESS.

For the record- I do NOT track my carbs from vegetables. I don’t even enter veggies in my app.

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3.) What can I eat? What should I avoid? What are some staples? 

Let’s start with the good news…all the delicious things you can eat.

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  • Protein– since this is the goal, this should be a focal point. You can eat any kind of protein. Some popular go to protein on Keto are bacon (full fat, none of that turkey BS), chicken thighs, hamburger meat (full fat), chicken breast, tuna….really nothing is off limits as meat is low carb/no carb. I am NOT a vegetarian so I do not know what to tell you if you don’t eat meat.
  • Veggies– Greens are the goal. Leafy lettuce, broccoli, asparagus, and green beans. There are off limits vegetables. The rule of thumb for me is nothing that is grown underground (potatoes). Corn is high in carbs so that should be avoided or eaten in moderation.
  • Dairy- I am going to tell you something no one on a diet has ever told you before…YOU CAN EAT CHEESE. Cheese from the block is lower in carbs than shredded cheese (because of the preservatives they use to prevent it from sticking). My lazy ass still eats shredded cheese though. Full fat sour cream, full fat cream cheese, string cheese, and heavy cream are all OK on keto. Milk has more carbs than heavy cream, so avoid it if possible. You can sub it out for almond milk or other low carb options.

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What to AVOID:

  • Fruit- Sorry to be the bearer of bad news, especially with yummy fruit season here. There are very few fruits you can eat on keto due to the high carb content in the majority of fruits. Fruits to absolutely avoid are bananas, peaches, and apples. You can get away with an occasional handful of berries (strawberries or raspberries).
  • Bread, pasta, grains- this should be obvious on a low carb diet, but we try to find loopholes all the time. There are low carb options for tortiallas or bread on the market. This will be up to you if you want to eat them. Very strict ketoers say anything with wheat or grain is “not keto”. If it doesn’t kick you out of ketosis though, I say try it out. I lose faster not eating these items. Once in awhile I will indulge, but the fact of the matter is they have inflammatory properties about them. Many people doing this WOE will invest in almond flour and make their own keto approved breads, crusts, etc. Pinterest has a ton of recipes if you choose this route.
  • SUGARS – I cannot stress this enough. You CAN have sugar alternatives. Stevia is a great substitute. Erythritol will also not spike your levels. Avoid Malitol or Maltodextrin if possible (check labels.)

To be successful there are some staples I personally keep on hand for snacking and throwing together quick keto dinners. STAPLES 

  •  Bacon is the universal keto food. I add it to salads, make BLT salads, eat it plain…it covers protein and fat so having bacon on hand is a good idea.
  • Eggs- Great source of protein and burns a shit ton of fat. Google “Egg fast” and you will see how many ketoers live for eggs.
  • Avocado- Avocado is full of good fat and there is a hundred and one ways to eat it.
  • Olives – These are my go to low carb snack when I want something salty. I also add them to my salads.
  • String cheese- Another handy snack to have or I chop them into pieces and throw them in salads (because I like to use my staples in many ways to save on the grocery bill).
  • Pepperoni- This is one of my favorite keto snacks! Just make sure you are always reading labels and avoiding items with extra added sugar
  • Enlightened or Halo Top Ice Cream- You cannot eat a whole pint of these and stay in Ketosis, so exercise control over this…I eat ONE SERVING (about 1/4 or 1/2 cup) for a sweet tooth fix.
  • Pizza Sauce– Pizza sauce is a great substitute for marinara sauce (I eat with zuchini noodles and meat). It has 3 net carbs versus 16g or more in marinara.

Here is what my day consists of to give you an idea:

  • Breakfast- Coffee with sugar free raspberry syrup and heavy cream (you can also try bulletproof coffee- google can tell you how to make this, I don’t drink it)
  • Lunch- 3 scrambled eggs with Johnny’s Seasoning and shredded mexican cheese
  • Dinner- a protein, fat, and a vegetable. For example – chicken breast with hollandaise sauce and green beans and bacon bits.
  • Snack- string cheese

4.) Keto flu and how to avoid it 

By the grace of the keto Gods I have never experienced Keto flu. Probably because I did my research and took preventive measures. You should too! It is important when you are on Keto to supplement your nutrients. Magnesium and potatssium are important. I cannot stress enough to also add electrolytes to your diet. I do this by drinking beef broth in a mug and adding salt to my food. Some people get drinks with electrolytes. If you start having flu like symptoms, up your electrolytes. Drink A LOT of water. Your body is going to go through a detoxification process. We humans are highly addicted to carbs and sugars. When you remove them, you WILL have some sort of withdrawal symptoms and water, electrolytes, and supplements will help.

5.) WTF is a Net Carb. 

I won’t pretend to understand the entire science behind net carbs and total carbs. All I know is how to calculate them and when I do net carbs I still lose weight. Fibers and sugar alcohols can be deducted from a total carb count to get the net carb. It has something to do with the impact it has on our metabolic state.

Here is an example:

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This has 3 NET carbs.

TOTAL CARBS (21) – FIBER (5) = 16 – SUGAR ALCOHOLS (13) = 3 NET CARBS

(if its maltodextrin I only deduct HALF the sugar alcohols).

Carb manager is pretty accurate at doing the net carbs for you though. I am only throwing this in in case you choose to do heavy tracking and strict keto…then you can figure it out by looking at the labels.

5.) Tracking your weight loss progress 

The scale can be ALL OVER the place with Keto. I personally take progress pictures and measurements once a month and weight once a week. I am currently down 9 pounds but 7 inches collectively.

6.) How will I know if I am in ketosis? 

There are blood and urine ketone monitors that you can waste your money on, but once you are fat adapted you will show negative ketones on a urine strip and then panic and think you aren’t in ketosis when you are. JUST STICK WITH 20 NET GRAMS OF CARBS OR LESS AND YOU WILL GET THERE!!

7.) KETO OS/ Exogenous ketones 

Some MLM companies are slinging ketone drinks. I personally even own the “Perfect Keto” brand Peaches and Cream and Chocolate exogenous ketones (Amazon). I only drink them for the MCT oil and to speed up going back into ketosis if I ate a bunch of carbs I shouldn’t have. If you are constantly eating keto approved foods there is no need for them. It will end up being expensive pee (you urinate out extra ketones).

8.) Alcohol – I personally avoid the stuff (68 days sober!). There are some alcoholic beverages that are keto approved. Dry white wines in moderation, vodka mixed with sparkling water, etc. Keep in mind your liver will ALWAYS burn alcohol before it will burn fat though. So NO, it won’t kick you out of ketosis, but fat burning will take a back seat.

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THAT’S ALL FOLKS.

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There you have it. I hope you have found this informative and a good starting point. I am always here to answer questions or share recipes. Happy Ketoing!

 

Bloom

Bloom

Happy beginning-of-the-full-moon-eve!

Tomorrow I am jetting off to San Francisco with my dear friend for the first time. I have never been to California other than LAX for connecting flights and for customs for trips to Mexico. I love my part of the West Coast, the Pacific Northwest. Mountains, rivers, forests, windy ocean beaches, and flat desert on the east side. I have had it in the back of my mind to go down to California but it’s never been an insane urge. If anything I would love to drive down the coast and see the redwoods. Everyone who knows me knows that my heart beats for New York City. I have always vibrated towards that grit and chaos New York provides. So many aspects of my life and thought process are changing though. The last time I was in New York I was certifiably drunk the entire time. I felt the ghosts of Brianne’s past following me through the city and tried to drown it out with pinot grigios and very expensive mini bar vodka in my hotel room. That isn’t to say that my love for New York is gone, but I am definitely ready to explore different territories.

The slow going warm vibration of San Francisco sounds right up my alley. It feels like a good trip to ease myself into traveling sober. I have meetings planned out to receive a birthday coin down there and found a handful of witchy and vegan shops to explore.

I have NEVER gotten on an airplane 100% free of any mind altering substance and flying anxiety is very real for me. I feel pretty confident that I will be ok though. This time around in sobriety my obsession for alcohol has almost been lifted. On the days it creeps back in trying to seduce me my first thought is to call a friend or my sponsor in the program. I traveled to Anacortes not that long and had STRONG urges to drink but I have 49 days sober today and am much more in the routine of doing things sober than intoxicated. I use my tools and feel such a sense of peace I wouldn’t want to throw that away because of an urge I can overcome.

I am so in love with the way my mind works in sobriety. My emotions and heart too. I still have bad days but it doesn’t lead to mania, depression, and downward spirals. I pray, I call supportive friends, I journal, I read, I paint, I do things that fuel my serenity and well being. I have faith and acceptance under all conditions. Something that was seriously lacking in my first attempts at sober living. I allowed so many people, places, and things to dictate my happiness and serenity. I now fully accept that my higher power always has a plan and things are happening in my life that are a part of that plan. Sometimes it’s amazing, and sometimes its a hard, but necessary lesson. I also know that nothing that happens is worth throwing away my hard work and peace of mind. In the words of Lynyrd Skynyrd “troubles will come, and they will pass.” I have adopted that way of thinking. Bad days are a part of life. I don’t have the luxury of numbing the pain or forgetting about it by smothering it with drugs. I hate that we live in a society that pushes that notion on people. Drinking to forget or get over pain is not a coping mechanism. There is no healing or growth that can come from it even if you are a normie.

I understand better than anyone the pull to self medicate, but there are so many more healthy ways to do it. I prefer self healing and self love now. Self medicating has led me down some of the darkest paths I have known and it wasn’t until I came out on the other side that I realized that.

The way I view self medicating is like looking at a garden full of weeds, and that garden is our mind. We have two options…we can dump a shit ton of soil on top of the weeds or we can pull them. When we cover them it looks better but the roots are still there growing outward and infecting more and more parts of the garden. If we take the time to pull them and care for the garden in its entirety we can begin to plant flowers and bloom.

I hope you choose to bloom.

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A Recipe for a Family that Will Break Your Heart.

A Recipe for a Family that Will Break Your Heart.

Before I delve into the topic today I want to apologize in advanced. I am feeling very open, raw, and ready. I write this with no courage in my heart, although many would argue it takes courage of a sort to put these things to paper. I write this because as a recovering alcoholic I do not have the luxury of carrying around anger, resentments and pain. To keep it inside me is one step closer to a relapse and the only reprieve I have on a daily basis is dependent on the condition of my heart, soul, and spirituality.

I write this with tears in my eyes and I have no idea why. With 39 days of sobriety tears are just a thing. Pain with no known root, tidal waves of happiness, sinking guilt in the pit of your stomach, joy with no limit, tears with no reason, fears with no solution. This is what I feel. I have confused my mind and body so long by suppressing feelings and thoughts with alcohol or destruction that it is a muddled mess to try and sort through. Do not read this and be mistaken. Sobriety is the best gift I have ever given myself. These feelings are human and critical to the recovery process. It’s not hard to comprehend them and get through with the help of the 12 steps.

With unbridled honesty I am going to address the topic of family.

It is nature’s way for humans and animals alike to be drawn to their kin. We have an innate need to be nurtured by our mothers, protected by our fathers, supported by our siblings, and so on and so forth. In a perfect world, this chain of command is followed as the universe so intended. In 30 years of life I can tell you that we do not live in a perfect world… in fact we live in a world that is far from it.

Every family has its problems, addictions, and dysfunctions. My family is no different. We are the perfect storm of alcoholism, addiction and mental illness. To replicate the makeup of my family you will simply need the following ingredients:

  • A dash of self will run riot
  • a handful of suicidal tendencies
  • a splash of mental illness
  • substance to abuse of your choice

I should put in a disclaimer here in case any family member happens upon this blog. Just like all families have their dysfunctions, all families have their saints. This is not written to offend, this is written to enlighten. If you read this and feel offended in some way I implore that you step back and look in the mirror and reflect on what you can do differently so that this need not apply to you. 

In my family the pickins aren’t slim for varying degrees of fucked up. I wanted to find an “easier” “softer” way to put this but there is just no energy left to beat around the bush.

EVERY ADDICT DESERVES TO BE LOVED AND HELPED. EVERY CHILD DESERVES THE SAME AMOUNT OF CARE. IF YOU BROUGHT THEM INTO THIS WORLD IT IS YOUR DUTY TO PARENT THEM, LOVE THEM, AND HELP THEM.

Praise our success equally. Love us through our hard times. Don’t compare my addiction to  his. Stop shushing us when we cry. Stop telling us to get it together. SHOW us how to get it together. Love us until we love ourselves again. Love me when I am overweight because I have starved myself seeking affection. Drown my pain in your love because I can’t drown it in alcohol anymore. Stop slamming doors on unresolved traumas. Stop brushing off what needs to be spoken about. Drop the facade that you don’t hurt.

 

Stop hurting your family with indifference and coldness. Light their world with a fire born from your belief in their abilities and rejoice in their recovery equally.

But I write all of this in vain, because I have prayed for it for years and it stays the same.

How can we grow when we refuse to change?

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New Moons and Little Things.

New Moons and Little Things.

We have survived another mercury retrograde and it ended on the night of the new moon. *Collective sigh*. It’s like the universe is taking a big deep breath. Maybe it’s because I know the implications of retrograde but I feel like a giant weight has been lifted off my shoulder now that it’s gone. I also tried something entirely new for the new moon last night and I wanted to share it.

My usual routine during new moons or full moons is to change my altar. I place three tarot cards that represent what I am trying to manifest as well as three candles in a variety of colors to help aid in that manifestation. Truth be told I have been so busy and distracted by work and life that when I am done with that, that is about as far as it goes. Needless to say my manifestations have not completely come to fruition. Because I am working so diligently on acceptance of my higher power and the universe’s will for me, I decided to pull my three cards for the altar at random. I lit calming lavender incense, breathed in some throat chakra opening oils, and cleansed the space. I then used my intuition to pull the three cards at random while asking the universe to guide me. Asking what do I need to focus on during this moon cycle. The three cards I pulled are:

The four of Swords: This card indicates that a period of rest and relaxation is needed after much hard work. Coincidentally enough, I had booked a spontaneous trip to San Francisco the day before and was having buyers remorse. This to me indicated the universe was giving me the green light that I had made the right choice.

The seven of Pentacles and the Nine of Pentacles: both of these cards represent abundance, wealth, and material growth.

What I am taking from this is that I have been on the right track this whole time. Maybe I need to trust my intuition more. Maybe I need to make it a priority to put a little more effort into my manifesting, because the universe is clearly on my side.

In other news, today I have 38 continued days of sobriety. I have saved $570.00 on alcohol. I have begun writing again. I have been painting again. I have some deep, heavy, pieces that I am going to start working on for the blog. I have slipped into a chaotic, yet productive routine. My days consist of constant work whether its real estate or my “stable income” job. I can often be found sitting in my AA meetings answering emails and phone calls right up to the last moment or on breaks. I show a lot of properties after work and get home late and draw up offers. I take the last few moments of the day to read. I am tired a lot and go to bed early but I am sleeping through the night. Something that has been a foreign concept for me much of my adult life. I have a sense of serenity and acceptance about me. When things go awry I can accept them without much difficulty. I don’t always like the outcome but I no longer fight the will of the universe and my higher power. It is such a relief to feel the burdens of the world around me off my shoulders.

When I first joined the rooms off AA I knew I wanted what they had. They smiled and rejoiced in things that I couldn’t understand. I thought “what a shame” these people “would have to go to meetings” all the time…what an absolute waste of time and a life. Last weekend I was at an AA convention though and I wouldn’t have had it any other way. The meetings breathe hope and fiery passion for life back into me. Today I rejoice in small things too. I was dancing in my kitchen while mopping bright and early simply because I was alive and I can. I had no hangover, no bleary eyes to squint through, no mess to fix…I was just a happy girl with a whole day ahead of me to be a functioning human and that was enough reason to dance.

I hope this new moon and lighter cosmic energy gives you some fire to do what you love too. Until next time.

 

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