We drink because....

......we WANT TO DRINK! In AA we find that an alcoholic will drink for ANY reason, simply because we are alcoholics. We don't need a reason. I always found it interesting that I would use an excuse when I drank/relapsed..the economy, pressure at work, marital problems, family issues. When I looked at it closely I also drank when I closed a deal, I was happy, the economy was good, my family was great!!! So the real reason is we drink because we want to..and in AA it is easiest to accept that, then we dont have to "find a reason" or "wonder why we drank". When we accept we drink because we have a disease, the world of recovery becomes that much easier...

Today I am grateful for:
  • Starting to see a new therapist. This comes at a great time, because usually the holidays bring me way down.
  • My daughter and wife and the joy they have together.
  • My wife keeping my daughter on track to be potty trained.
  • Somehow God keeping me on track when I feel so off track..
  • Ammends and the freeing feeling I get when I apologize sincerely!


Today..just today..

In recovery we are told all we have is today. To be honest. To be trustworthy. To be loved. and to Love.
Each time I wake up I treat an incurable disease, and its in that where I find my torture. How long must we go before we find the cure? The answer is the whole road.

Today I am grateful for:
  • My daughter and her smile.
  • The peace I feel if I stay in the moment.
  • God doing for me, if I just listen.
  • Friendship.


Checking in...

It has been a bit since I blogged, 3 or 4 days. I have been in a good place and I am trying to gain some trust back from people that I ruined....it is hard to reconcile your past without living in the past. That is where the program can help me to discard all that after I have worked thru it. I don't have to live in the past to heal from the past. Every decision I make today, can be a good one and does not have to be the one that I have made before....

I am happy to be where I am, to have learned the things I have. It makes me love the journey all that more.

Today I am grateful for:
  • My wife working her program right along with me.
  • Work going well and I am grateful to have a job.
  • My daughter and her vocabulary improving.
  • God working with me and being patient even though sometimes I don't deserve it.


Loving yourself...

At a meeting this morning, we talked about loving ourselves....if we cant do that we cannot recover...A lot depends on us trying to figure out how we can survive without alcohol. This can happen. We can survive in our world even though we don't think we can. We needed alcohol so much, to a fault. We thought that we needed to survive with the drink....the truth is we could not survive with the drink...only without it. How much of our ego depends on us drinking. How much depends on us trying to figure out what we can do and what we cannot do in sobriety. I pray that I can figure that out...

Today I am grateful for:

  • My meeting.
  • My sobriety for the day.
  • Daily reprieve each day...and an ability to overcome that.
  • God doing for me..


Random thoughts....

I think that in sobriety as well as when we were drinking we can feel somethings are just like they were when we were drinking...in other words, we can scheme and manipulate just as well without drinking. That is the hardest part in sobriety, is to actually change behavior and not just "go with what you know". If we as alcoholics always went with what we know we would have the same problems we had while drinking. We learned to go with what we know WHILE we were drinking. So the problem then becomes, how do we change. It takes patience, practice and perseverance. What I know today is the sometimes I need to take the contrary action to what I am thinking. Make a mental note and do the opposite. Putting my needs and want to the side, what is the real reason this is going on? How do I react to this without being selfish or manipulative. It takes practice, but so many have done it that I know I can, with the help of God...

Today I am grateful for:
  • A hopefully relaxing weekend...
  • My home office being set up and the peace it gives me working here...
  • Time to reflect and work on me each day...
  • My noon meeting and some of the things I heard there...
  • Turning problems over to God and letting him work them out...


To remove..

"Were entirely ready to let God remove these defects of character" Step 6 (paraphrase)
Remove, Definition by dictionary.com
"..to remove from a place or position.."

I heard at a meeting that the definition of remove is to distance oneself from. That we need to distance ourselves from our character defects and then our Higher Power will then insert himself between us...without that distance, our HP cannot do anything for us. I thought this interesting...it is not as if we can kill or get rid of our character defects, they are a part of us. However, in working our program to the best of our ability we can distance ourselves from them and from our reactions to them. They exist but we are so far "removed" from them that we do not let them ruin our lives, or our sobriety.
It is like Australia. I know it is there, but I am so far removed from it, that I cannot be affected by it....weird analogy I know, but the point is made. The more we remove ourselves from our defects, the more room we create for God to get in between us and them...the more we create the healing process for God.

Today I am grateful for:
  • Waking up a little more refreshed than the past nights.
  • My wife and her funny little quirks that I enjoy while sober and that bother me when I am not in recovery.
  • Spending time this morning working on myself.
  • Finding a meeting at noon today that I can go to for the first time...
  • Me changing instead of my sobriety date changing!!


Giving to get...

In Step 12 it is told that we must give freely what we have in order to stay sober. In life it is the same. We must freely give our love to receive love. I have found in the past few days that when I can give away my love I seem to get it without condition. That is the greatest gift. I am way away from step 12, but I can try and practice giving without the condition of receiving something. I always know that when I give and help, without expectation, I can receive what my Higher Power wants me to have.

It is a struggle sometimes to stay sober, and I pray that, just for today, I can listen to my higher power and He can have my weaknesses.

Today I am grateful for:
  • Having set-up my home office it is working out well.
  • The motivation and ability to work out, some people are unable and for that I am grateful.
  • My daughter and her smile every morning.
  • God doing for me...
  • An early meeting to keep my head straight.


Two things...

At a meeting last night a person got up and shared only 2 things:
  1. Sobriety is not a punishment.
  2. If you don't change, your sobriety date will.
I was fascinated by this, and frankly had never heard this before. How simple it was, yet how hard. It seems that every time I want to over complicate recovery, someone helps me by putting things into perspective. I so often feel like God is punishing me by giving me this disease. It is not a punishment, it is meant for me to grow and change to become better one of His children. I cannot believe that my struggles are meant for me to fail, only to become closer to Him and His way.

I have been struggling with change, and sometimes that has made my sobriety date change. As an addict I don't want things to change, let them be...but how is that working for me? Misery, guilt, remorse, shame...who wants to hold onto these things? An addict that is who.

Today I am grateful for:
  • A friend to go to a meeting with last night.
  • Treating my disease today.
  • The way my body feels when I take care of it...
  • My daughter and her smile...


Excuse the absence...

Took a little time off, between life and life, the blog suffered. And frankly so did I. I think the most important thing to achieve in life is balance. In recovery we see we can even be out of balance on good things too...too many meetings, not paying attention to other things. This can happen in every aspect of life if we are not careful.
Another thing I am struggling with is TRUST in my higher power. It seems strange that I can trust so many evil things, drinking, gambling, etc...to bring me happiness, but the one thing that truly can take this away from me is my Higher Power.
I laugh at the notion I can do this all by myself. It truly is a feat to be in recovery and take this sickness away. There is not a person who suffers from this disease that will tell you that it will rip your soul out if you let it....truly....
I am grateful for my balance that is coming to my life..

Today I am grateful for:
  • My wife and daughter and how much fun we had this weekend.
  • My time alone this morning as I worked out to reflect and see changes I need to make.
  • Honesty taking over my mind, even when the fucked up thoughts try to creep in.
  • Inventory and the process starting for me.


One Foot forward...

Putting it simply, recovery for me is putting one foot forward, shutting up when I want to react, and delaying any gratifications that I have...really that is the sum of all my parts. I want to react, I want to scream, I want to fantasize about how really bad people think of me.....but in recovery I can not do that. I can wait, pause and react. I have been concentrating on balance...to keep my mental, physical and emotional things in check....that has been the hardest yet. I have a great plan to get better physically and I love my recovery, however I need to balance the three so as to get everything firing on the same cylinders.

I love change, I know at 38 I can change, I know I can make myself what my Higher Power has always seen in me...I know I can become at 6 or 60 the best me possible...

Today I am grateful for:
  • Doing well at my job.
  • My wife and her trust, no matter how many times I break it, she freely gives as long as I am trying, which I always am.
  • Football season, really need I say more.
  • God being there, whispering...loving...and waiting.


Given Freely...

In the program we all talk about giving freely, but who does this more than our Higher Power? Every time I fail as a person or disappoint, I know that God is still there. He listens and will be there for me no matter what. I feel like this is what we, as alcoholics, need to do. Listen and be there for others no matter what. I know we all must be guarded and use common sense when dealing with drunks, but really sometimes we just need to give freely what we have been given. Love, acceptance, peace, teachings. It all comes with just enough for us all to give to others...I hope I can give this freely to all, that my love might be shown with these gifts..

Today I am grateful for:
  • Not listening to my body and head this morning and staying in bed...it felt great to really get up early and work out.
  • Getting the right size shoes!!!
  • Working thru a problem with my wife and finding the best solution was hers, its rare I can do that.
  • God still doing for me, even when I am stubborn as a mule...
  • My still small voice that seems to be coming back, telling me right from wrong...


The Triangle...

In life I have been told we need to work on our "triangle" all together, the Mental side, Spiritual side and Physical side. When I am in recovery sometimes some of these sides suffer, I spend so much time worrying about my alcoholism that I eat whatever I want and don't sleep, or I don't spend time reading something that isn't recovery related, or doing something else to stimulate my mind. Over the last week or so I have learned that it is imperative to make sure all THREE sides of my life are in balance. Sometimes this is the hardest thing to do in recovery. I cannot be successful in life if I cant find this balance.

Its like I am learning all over again to walk, like my emotional, spiritual and physical growth have all started over. Day by day I am learning even more....

A member of my Saturday group shared the following story I liked...
"Everyday I go get the mail and my dog comes with me...we get the mail and then go back inside. On this particular day I went to get the mail and thought my dog had gone back in. After about an hour and a half I realized my dog was not in the house. I ran to the front door and opened it and on the doormat was my dog patiently waiting for me to open the door. I feel that this is like my Higher Power, even when I shut him outside, he is patiently waiting for me to open the door."

Great Story...

Today I am grateful for:
  • A great weekend.
  • My daughter being in a "big girl" bed and sleeping pretty well all things considered...
  • God doing for me, even when I have shut the door on him...
  • God patiently waiting for me to finally "get" it...wow that's a LOT of patience!!!
  • My wife's support and love.



Each day I awake I say, I am an alcoholic. Throughout the day the disease does a million things to tell me I am not. If I am busy with work, or starting a project of things are going good, the disease tells me all is ok...you can beat this and you are not an alcoholic. The truth is no matter how much I workout, work on projects or get new ideas, I am still a drunk. The disease is cunning baffling and powerful. There is no difference in me and the skid row bum, the only thing that separates me from that is one last drink.

I know this in my heart, but my head sometimes gets in the way...BIG TIME!!! I am glad for my daily reprieve and no matter what happens in my head, I have identified as an alcoholic, and frankly you cant unindentify!!! Each day is new and can help me to be better in my recovery!!!

Today I am grateful for:
  • My Saturday meeting, there are some great people there.
  • My wife and daughter and finding something to do today!
  • The vacation that we are going to plan today.
  • God accepting me and my flaws....
  • Progress rather than perfection if I needed to be a perfect sober person I never would make it.


Health and Freedom

My alcoholism has taken me to depths of despair I never would have known...but it has also taken me places to learn things I never would have learned. It is strange how even the hardest lessons can be appreciated given time. My patience was tried today with some work things, and I think I am going to just accept it and move on...that is the only thing I can do..

On a related note I started a personal fitness regiment today, and I just had to accept the weight I am as a starting point and try not to make excuses. I am handling this like my alcoholism...one day at a time...just trying to manage to hold it all together...its tough but I am trying...

Today I am grateful for:
  • Having the smarts to keep my mouth shut at my job when I know I would be in trouble if I didn't.
  • Learning to be QUIET. Trying to learn to let others speak.
  • The calm of the house as I type this.
  • Learning more and more each day to trust...God, myself and others..
  • Being right where I am supposed to be...


Personal Inventory

As I am in the middle of my fourth step, which is an accounting of my drinking days and what not, I often forget that we need to take personal inventory each day. If I do that each night I can make this progress a living breathing entity instead of something that is only dealing with the "drinking past". Each day before I go to bed, I should think of what I did that day that I can do better, or what I did that was good. How to improve, how to be more of service. Did I offend anyone (probably) or was I dishonest. The best way to improve ourselves is to continually right our wrongs on a daily basis, not just the events from our drinking past.

Today I am grateful for:
  • Personal inventory.
  • Taking steps to become healthier, both mentally and physically.
  • A job that keeps my family under a roof.
  • Morning prayers, righting my wrongs.
  • God trying to do for me, even when I don't want Him to!!!!!!!


Half Measures...

Half Measures availed us nothing....Big Book of AA.

As an alcoholic I feel I am constantly doing half measures. This half way, that half way. Just doing enough to get by...just doing as much as it takes to get the minimum done. I don't believe that is how life should be. It started early with me, as a kid I would always do the same thing. I think it stems from selfish behaviour. The reason I do things half way is that I want to go do something I want. I hope to be able to work on this character defect. I hope to be able to get that piece away from me as I continue to work the program. It will be more and more difficult to be self seeking if I lose myself in the program.

Today I am grateful for:
  • Sleeping in my own bed, travelling makes my clock all out of sync.
  • Morning Tea again.
  • A new doctor that I can get a hold of and maybe get some of my medical problems worked out.
  • Progress and not perfection.
  • God being there, even when sometimes WE abandon him...


Self seeking motives..

In recovery I still find my mind seeking my self, something that makes me feel better. Since its not alcohol, it often is food or isolation or something else that still is self seeking. When the program starts to change us, we find our time and desires become more than self serving, they become selfless...I hope that the more I walk this road the more my desire to "quash" my feelings with whatever "escape" I might desire can be replaced with service to others or helping my spiritual malady.

Today I am grateful for:
  • My Saturday meeting on relationships, it always helps me to look at how I react.
  • A night alone with my wife, I am excited about our date.
  • That I still can laugh and have a sense of humor when I am sober.
  • God doing for me...and progress rather than perfection!!


Patience my little friend...

As of my 38th year I finally am trying to learn patience. And frankly I am not sure I am doing very well at it...but I do know one thing. I am for sure thinking about it a lot more. I find myself saying how can I be more patient, how can I see my part in this situation. The reality is that I still try to push things to happen maybe out of the natural order or things...and that is not My Higher Powers way...teach me the serenity right?

Today I am grateful for:
  • My wife having a great birthday weekend.
  • Having a date night with my beautiful wife.
  • Teaching my daughter to count...and that is teaching me patience.
  • God doing for me, and reminding me!!!!!



I hear in the rooms "God is standing next to me with his arm around my shoulders and a hand over my mouth". So many times I have wanted to say things and mostly I did...now in sobriety I need to check what I am saying. It is one thing to try and not take others inventory, but sometimes it is just hard to not react with anger or contempt to a situation. That type of reaction will always give me NOTHING I need in life. IT is better to wait, calm down and try and deal with the person, place or thing without coming from emotion or control. As I practice this in my affairs I get better and better at reading how people react to this change. I pray that I might become better at this each day, thinking and reacting with restraint.

Today I am grateful for:
  • Closer to the weekend.
  • My wife's birthday which should be fun.
  • My obsession coming but when it does I know what to do.
  • Trying to become closer to my Higher Power.
  • God doing for me...and progress not perfection.


Acting as if...

In my drinking I was always able to pretend, lie, cheat and steal to be someone else...that was not a problem. In sobriety I try and act as if...meaning act as if you are sober, and BE SOBER. This means working the program even if I don't understand it. Doing the next right thing will help me to understand how I can better myself and help others. The reality is that if I continue to suit up and show up then someday I will "get" it. I love the program and how it makes me see MY part in all my problems. That is a blessing...

Today I am grateful for:
  • Patience from my wife...
  • My program
  • My daughter and playing with her tonight...
  • God doing for me...


Letting Go....

To really beat this disease and CHANGE, I need to let it go to my Higher Power. God, as I believe, wants me to be happy and healthy. The struggles we are given must happen in order to learn and to change. For some reason I am hard wired to LOVE alcohol and the effect that it gives me. The program and thought process that I need to be a better person is a software that I must install in my brain. To do that, I must turn it over to my Higher Power and really trust that I can change. I have tried so many times to force change and not accept what was given to me, I am learning that as I accept my path, the path opens up and gets easier. I can love myself and have an easier path as long as I accept where I am going. I am not the leader here....and boy that is TOUGH to learn.

Today I am grateful for:
  • My favorite meeting tonight, the sobriety is great and the shares are honest.
  • Being honest today.
  • Work moving forward.
  • A little break from work soon, I could use some time away.
  • God doing for me....



I feel sometimes while I trudge this road that I will never be fully able to forgive myself for some of the things I have done. While it is true that every alcoholic has done some crazy things, most seem to be able to move past that and get better. I am having serious doubts that I can overcome the guilt I have. The shame I have. That is why I have to let my Higher Power work miracles in me. I said something at a meeting on Saturday that I really mean. I am not as Good as I think I am, and I am not as Bad as I think I am either. I hope that my Higher Power can work within me and take away this guilt, and this obsession.

Today I am grateful for:
  • Feeling energy for a great week ahead.
  • My desire to change my body and become more healthy.
  • My family and the fun we had this weekend.
  • God doing for me....



Often people say that they are willing to do things, and for me that is exactly the opposite. In my program to become willing to listen, and do what I am told is completely foreign to me. I am full of ego and pride and there is no way that you of all people know better than me. Normal people can take suggestions and change behavior as they see fit. For me, the alcoholic, I take a suggestion to mean that you are criticising me...and that is bad. The more I learn not to take suggestions from other alcoholics as maybe they know what they are talking about, maybe then I can "get" it.

Today I am grateful for:
  • My Saturday meeting and the great presence felt there.
  • My wife doing all our laundry yesterday, it makes the weekend more fun.
  • My daughter running to me when I come home, and that I come home now. Sometimes I didn't....
  • God doing for me...


Standing in my own way....

Often in life, I limit myself. I feel that I am less than or that I can't accomplish something that I set my mind to...this is a real part of my disease. I try to learn everyday that I can be good, I can be the person that I was intended to be. Despite my disease and addiction I am a child of God. My Higher Power wants me to be happy and healthy. I heard someone say "God doesn't have any grandchildren." I am a direct product of a divine being and for that I try and be grateful. My disease does not define me, and I feel that I have been letting it define me for several years now. I am trying to let go and not be in control, and to understand that the disease does NOT define me. I define me, my goodness defines me and My Higher Power has created me to be more than an alcoholic. This is just part of the path that I trudge. Along with a lot of other people!

Today I am grateful for:
  • Friday and getting some work done outside this morning.
  • The happiness I am feeling towards being a father.
  • My program always evolving so that I can be better, and understand it better.
  • God doing for me...


Courage to change the things I can..

In my program its always hard to know what I can change and what I cant. The reality is that the courage I need to change is simply this...do what the program tells me. Read, pray, meditate, call others, be of service. These are the things that I can do to change. It does take courage because that is so NOT me. I want to change everything by force or change things that cant be changed. Its a matter of acceptance for me, realizing that the courage I need to pick up the phone and talk to another member of AA is a lot more than the courage of picking up a drink.

Today I am grateful for:
  • Getting to a meeting tonight, its my first time at this one and I am excited to see what it is about.
  • Feeling more energy throughout the day.
  • Discovering that one day at a time can work.
  • My daughter's funny antics...
  • God doing for me.....


Amends equals Amendment

I heard someone last night talk about making amends is like making an amendment to something, in other words to CHANGE something. It is not enough in this program to just say "I am sorry" and I did this and that, we must change the behavior that caused us to make this amends. Can the father who ignored his children because he drank say I am sorry then continue to ignore them for the program or work or something else? NO! We must say the amends try and heal that wound and CHANGE what we are doing. I am the worst at this. I love to say I am sorry and have no ability to change my behavior. The program is teaching me above all to change. Sometimes, I have heard, when we change the amends make themselves. I am starting my 4th step and am scared and happy at the same time. I hope that in doing this I can make true amends and move past this obsession and compulsion.

Today I am grateful for:
  • My sunburn being almost gone, now to deal with peeling.
  • My daughter feeling a bit better today.
  • My body reacting well to the tea I am drinking.
  • Work falling into place.


For the better...

The AA group exists to help all alcoholics find a better life. To be in the group is the only way to stay sober. I was listening to a speaker on my I POD last night as I was falling asleep and I heard him say that alcohol is not our problem, alcoholism is. Normal people when they have a problem with alcohol stop and their life gets better and they get happier. An alcoholic, whose thoughts and processes are pretty screwed up, who stops drinking and doesn't work a program just gets angry and hates their life. The program has allowed us to understand how to live a HAPPY life without alcohol. To treat people with respect and dignity. Also, the addict stopped growing emotionally when their addiction set in. You are stuck at your last point of when your addiction started unless you work a program. The most important part of our growth is trusting God. I can do this today, I can do this one day at a time.

Today I am grateful for:
  • Maybe finding an office to be in while my job figures out where to put us all.
  • My sunburn healing a bit...
  • Sleeping in a little after our guests left town.
  • My brother in law and his example as a father and friend.
  • My wife's amazing motherhood.
  • God really is doing for me what I cannot do for myself.



I seem to get very restless when I dont work the program as hard as I can. I want everything NOW. The patience part is the hardest thing to work on. I need to be more humble and learn to work on my disease with patience.

Today I am grateful for:
  • Family visiting.
  • Meetings this week.
  • My serenity returning.


Serenity NOW!

My Saturday meeting is about serenity in relationships, something the alcoholic knows nothing about. As we are in recovery we learn how to pause, react differently and try to listen more. The most important thing I am learning is that I cannot control other people's choices or actions. It is easy for me to judge or get angry or say you should do this...but the reality is that in order to maintain serenity we cannot do that. One day at a time I am growing and learning how better to stop and listen than to interact in a negative way.

Today I am grateful for:
  • My new book.
  • The movie night last night with my wife, even though the movie was pretty strange.
  • My daughter playing happily in her crib when mom and I overslept!
  • Learning that the first two relationships I have to fix in sobriety are the ones I have with my Higher Power and with MYSELF!


Center of the universe...

Today I found myself falling into a pattern that can be dangerous to us alcoholics. Its something we all do and even more so the alcoholic. I was at work and had just had a conversation with my boss when another senior manager went into his office. I had a conversation with this senior manager earlier and thought nothing of it. However, when the door closed I immediately had my head spinning. Are they talking about me? What did I do? How can I interrupt and not be rude and hope to hear what they are talking about? Oh this is it I must be in trouble...WOW...how sick is that. All of our thinking can lead us to this, and in the drinking days I would have worried myself right to a bar. Well I still don't know what they talked about, but I can guarantee you it wasn't about me. I just thought it was. It goes back to keeping my side of the street clean and then I can deal with just about anything that comes my way. Its odd for me to try and think this way and break the pattern that I have created since I was a child. Just for an FYI to all you reading this the universe DOES NOT revolve around me. Even though I think it does.

Today I am grateful for:
  • My wife and I being able to work out daycare where neither one of us has to take a full day off while our daughters daycare is on vacation.
  • Waking up and not coming to...
  • The beauty of the summer.
  • Making my favorite meetings this weekend, I was not able to go last week.
  • God doing for me...



Humbly asked him to remove our shortcomings. AA Seventh Step.

Although I am not on my seventh step yet, I can only imagine how we must kill our false pride when we are in recovery. It has always been a problem for me to have humility, even though I really don't like myself. But I wanted everyone to think I was great or had it all, and that created an over inflated ego. It was something watching me not like myself, and try to make the whole world like me! I am trying to be more humble in the face of the world. Trying to become a better person and for that I am grateful. Today is just one more day, one more time I have to treat my disease and be a better person. Father, husband, worker, friend all those things.

Today I am grateful for:
  • Spending time with my daughter.
  • Having a job.
  • My prayers this morning.
  • God doing for me what I CANNOT do for myself.



I once heard that you might be an alcoholic if you find something is working and you stop doing it. That is a classic line for me, and SO TRUE!

I have trouble committing to things, commitment means to me routine and dealing with feelings and not being able to escape. And to escape, for me, is the one thing that leads me to drink. In the rooms of AA I try to stay grounded, try to learn not to escape any kind of emotion. Sad, Anger, Fear, Happiness, everything. I have found in the past when I find some sort of routine that is working I can quickly sabotage that program or plan. If I stay in the moment each day, I don't escape or stop doing what is working. Keeping my program simple and my feet grounded to where I actually am standing has helped me to understand why I try and escape. Why I try to leave whatever moment I am in, good or bad.

Today I am grateful for:
  • My wife coming home from her trip, I loved my time with my daughter but Daddy needs a break!
  • My daughter and I's special time, it was a great weekend.
  • Being able to go to a meeting tonight, I have been unable for 3 days.
  • Entourage coming back tonight, one of my favorite shows!!!


Life on Life's terms..

As an alcoholic it seems like everything is surrounded by recovery. How to act, feel, react, not feel etc. It all seems to revolve around being sober. Its almost like a job at first. The more I do it and choose the right decision the more it becomes like a lifestyle and not a job. Things will come more instinctively than before and my old thought process will change and so will my actions. That is why life has become so much more manageable. Sometimes I just have to look at a situation and say, I cant control that, I don't have the power to control it and I don't want the power to control it! That is where serenity comes into play.

Today I am grateful for:
  • The exciting weekend with my daughter and mom.
  • Slowly slowly coming to believe.
  • My mom coming down and the ability to connect with her, even though we have years of alcoholic behavior.
  • The program.
  • God doing for me...


Feeling it...

I was at a meeting yesterday and the speaker spoke of intellectual sobriety and emotional sobriety. He shared how you can know something in the head, but not FEEL it and still be lost. That is where I am today. I don't know that I FEEL sobriety, and the only way for me to continue to do this is to sit in my feelings and actually have some meditation and FEEL what I am doing. It was great to hear someone explain that to me so I could actually understand the difference. I am going to sit more, listen more and hopefully feel more in my sobriety.

Today I am grateful for:
  • My loving wife and daughter, the trust that keeps coming even though I have broken a lot of it.
  • My phone call to a sober person yesterday that I hope helps someone dying of our addiction.
  • The restful weekend and the renewed energy I feel at work today.
  • Positive thoughts of a great week to come.


Independence Day!!!

As I sit here on the 4th of July I reflect on my own Independence. And frankly my dependence on what has been a major tool in my toolbox for many years. Coping with my feeling and emotions with alcohol. Shutting everything down after that second vodka hit my brain. Today I can be free of that, I can be free of the dependence. I can be independent. It doesn't matter what it is, if we are too dependant on anything our lives will become unmanageable. Food, sex, people, work, drugs, booze its all the same. If you rely too much on it and cant be free from it, it is going to ruin your life. Or at least make in unmanageable. I am grateful today that I can strive to be free, that for this 24 hours I am free from alcohol and feelings of shame and guilt that come along with that. The trick that the alcohol plays on me is the feeling of Independence when I am drinking. The catch is you are not free, you are dependant on it and the feeling is fleeting. I am glad to have realized that today. Happy freedom to all!

Today I am grateful for:
  • The people who have shed blood for my freedom and have kept it alive at all cost.
  • My wife and her program.
  • My daughter.
  • The freedom I am starting to feel.
  • My meeting this morning and all it has done for me.
  • People in my program who are helping me with or without knowing.


More willing...

In my sobriety I feel my old willfulness come out a lot. In takes so many forms I have a hard time trying to discern what is my old habits, a dry drunk habit or just plain stubborn. My sponsor told me to be more willing, and when asked how to do that, he just said stop controlling things. I am praying so hard to be more willing and able to do things. To let my will go and give it to God. That seems to be the hardest thing for me, getting the old self will out of the way.

Today I am grateful for:
  • The fun weekend planned.
  • Getting to my favorite meetings.
  • Trust coming back from people.
  • Trying to be willing to work hard at everything I do.


I resent that...

"Resentments or grudges do no harm to the person against whom you hold these feelings, but every day and every night of your life, they are eating at you." Norman Vincent Peale

In sobriety i cannot have resentments against anyone. It will hurt my sobriety. I dont think that I detach well enough sometimes. Maybe I can learn to do that better, then my resentments will be easier to let go.

Today I am grateful for:

  • The reset button.
  • My wife and daughter
  • My job.
  • One more day till the week winds down.
  • The cool weather, its seems everywhere I hear about its 100 degrees or more.


Letting your Guard down..

In sobriety, or recovery, letting your guard down can cause many problems. The reality is that the relapse happens weeks before the first drink. Not working the steps on a daily basis will make this happen. In my recovery I have let my guard down too much, and that's when the drink can do whatever it wants with me. I am powerless. It's not my will power isn't strong enough, its that I have NO power over the drink....none what so ever. The beauty is that I can reset at anytime during the day, or everyday when I need. God wants me to be happy, God wants me to be clean and sober and God wants me to be the best husband and father I can be. No matter how hard I try, I CANNOT beat this disease, its only God that can help me or actually DO IT for me. I have not been giving him my disease lately, I have been holding on to it for myself. That is where my downfall is, holding on to my alcoholism. Each day I give it up I succeed, but when I keep it, I don't.

God is working in me what I cannot do for myself.

Today I am grateful for:
  • The reset button when things go wrong.
  • Knowing that I am exactly where I need to be.
  • The truths I learn when I don't do what I need, and the truths I learn when I do what I need.
  • My wife and her support. Even in the midst of Chaos.


Emotional hurt from the past

The more I go through the process the more I can feel that I can change the pattern I have. I really can see actual things that I am changing, direct result of the program. I see how I am not trying to manipulate every situation and every thing that goes on around me. It is a miracle for me even to give a little control to my higher power. I am happy each day that I can try and do this just a little bit.

Today I am grateful for:
  • The work week and having a job.
  • Spending time with a friend who can help me think clearer.
  • My meeting schedule for the week.
  • My family and the struggles we went through making us stronger.



It doesn't matter how honest we are from day one, it only matters how honest we are PERIOD. I sit and am in the process of doing my fourth step. IT HURTS. It makes me sad and frankly it is brutal. One thing I know though, is that the wreckage of my past will always come back to haunt me unless I can clear it and forget it. Uncover, discover, discard. My wife and I are going through this about a thing that came up from 2 years ago. I didn't tell her this thing, because I haven't done my fourth step, but sometimes you just need to be honest. So I came clean about everything related to the matter and other things. It made me feel good, but made our relationship strained. I guess when you are in recovery the wreckage will always be there until you get rid of it, and the way you deal with it shows your growth.

Today I am grateful for:
  • My daughter.
  • My wife.
  • My amends and hoping they will be accepted.
  • My cross talk meeting and being honest.
  • Leaving it to God.



I am back to the blogging world. I took a break because frankly I wasn't working a strong program. I thought that I could do this without this aspect of my program. What happened? I became grumpy all the time, restless, and irritable. Don't even talk to me about discontent. It seems that when we get away from the drink, life inevitably gets in the way. It could be a trip, someone saying something we didn't like, or just plain life...it can take us from our program if we are not careful. I am powerless over those feelings. I am powerless over how being a dry drunk makes me feel. I hope that I can learn from that and work a harder and harder program everyday.

Today I am grateful for:
  • The program I know I need, and the work I have done to keep me here.
  • My wife and her program.
  • Not having to walk this road alone.
  • Completing my first 3 steps and the chance to get real with another alcoholic on Saturday about them.
  • My mind clearing from the fog of an emotional hangover.
  • That I trudge the road with so many others.
  • That God does when I seek him.


Pause, react...

The best thing I can do for myself is to slow down, pause, then react. Drunk, sober, clean or not it is a lesson everyone can learn. Usually our initial reaction to something or someone is emotionally charged, therefore leaving us to react in an emotional way. The reality, however, is if we take a moment and breathe, and God willing, think about our reaction we can have a more positive experience. It is human nature to protect ourselves, emotionally and physically, in any way possible. Therefore, we react as such. Self is first. If we slow down and think about the situation and circumstances, we find that we react with others in mind first, and that is what our Higher Power would have us do.

Trust God, Clean House, and Help Others.

Today I am grateful for:
  • My daughter and her special smiles.
  • A little bit of financial security.
  • Letting go of petty differences.
  • My wife's trust as I get ready to go away for a couple of days for work stuff.
  • The little voice that can calm me down and help me understand that waiting is better.


Idle Time..

In sobriety Idle time can make your brain go one hundred miles a minute. The reality is that we must find other things to do to occupy our time, hopefully productive things. It never ceases to amaze me how much my mind can go crazy just because I have nothing to do. I try and fill my time up now with things that can be productive. That is the only way to combat our disease.

Today I am grateful for:
  • The nice weekend.
  • Getting my chores done this morning before the in laws arrive.
  • My daughter's grandparents coming..
  • Letting go today and letting God.



Today I am grateful for:

  • Closer to the weekend!!!
  • My body feeling better and better each day.
  • The love of my wife and family.
  • Trying to help another alcoholic who is trying to find his way to the program.
  • My daughter's vocabulary, it makes me laugh.



I read somewhere today about the quality not the quantity of sobriety. It is important to me to really be IN recovery. Before it was about counting days and saying I have this much time, and while it is important to have that, it is more important, FOR ME, to live better. Live in recovery. To face problems, make amends, be gracious, humble, all these things that the program gives us, these are the things that are important to me. The quality of my sobriety today is the most important thing.

Today I am grateful for:
  • A crisp summer morning.
  • Not missing the garbage trucks, as I forgot to put out the cans last night.
  • A fresh week full of promise.
  • Meetings that I like all over!!!!!


Sitting in discomfort....

At a meeting today a person spoke of doing his personal inventory. He said it was taking so long because after 25 minutes he had to stop because of the shame, guilt, pain etc...Since this is a crosstalk meeting, I politely challenged him and said "that is what the program is about, sitting in those feelings, feeling them and changing. If we don't do that we are covering up our feelings with something other than alcohol."
That is the point of this program, and becoming a better person in general. No one wants to admit that they did things which are so awful most normal folk would cringe. Or discover our feelings that hurt. The goal is to really FEEL what that is like, and then get rid of that feeling. To get a paradigm shift we must sit in our feelings, get through them and grow. That is the only way to grow in life, to confront. The more we shut the door and ignore the worse things are.
I pray I can confront things that are coming up in my inventory, both daily and my inventory from my past. Thanks to this program, I believe I can...

Today I am grateful for:
  • Not shutting the door on my past.
  • A 10th step inventory with my wife yesterday that helped us discover why we were "irritated" at one another.
  • My loving daughter.
  • My meeting showing me that we all need to grow, no matter what.
  • That by the Grace of God....


Restless, Irritable and discontent...

These three words describe every alcoholic at some point. These can also describe every alcoholic who is not in recovery, even if they are not drinking. I found myself that way this morning, as the traffic was backed up for no reason, and it was going to make me late for my meeting. Then as I arrived at the meeting, really no regulars were there, leaving me to a strange meeting basically. My mind kept racing, wanting to leave, what good was this going to do me...etc...and basically pissed off. As I listened to the speaker, he talked about an antibiotic he is on that makes his fuse short and he is irritable. I paused and then a relief came over me, that pill used to be alcohol for me. It made me irritable, restless and discontent. Today I can overcome those feelings by working the program. So I paused, cleared my head and reset for the day right in the middle of my favorite meeting. Good thing I did, because there were some great shares, and I reconnected with a guy I met a while ago in the rooms. Point being, we don't need to have these feelings or act on them. We don't have to be restless, irritable and discontent anymore. We can be free of those feelings....thank God....

Today I am grateful for:
  • Our local carnival that we can walk to!
  • The rooms and the quiet peace I find there.
  • A reset button, thank goodness.
  • The calm feeling I get when I hit my reset button...
  • Work going smoother....


Random Fridays...Suiting up...showing up...

The miracles of the program never cease to amaze me. The healing that happens everyday around me is great. Trying to become something else and to heal what is inside me never was a possibility in the past. In recovery there is a way and a hope of healing myself, and the people that I have hurt. The program teaches us to be better, think better and live better....one more day.

Today I am grateful:
  • Coffee this morning from my beautiful wife.
  • FRIDAY!!!
  • Having somewhat of a vacation to look forward to..
  • My weekend meetings and a fair with my family...


Staying the course...

The beauty of the program is that as long as you correct and stay your course you can stay in recovery. I have learned that I can start over each day I have to, many times if need be, just to make sure my thinking is where it should be. There are events and things that are going to happen that set me OFF!!! But if I can stay the course, correct my heading I will be ok. Remember if you are travelling 10000 miles and you set your bearings one or two degrees off, by the time you get to your destination, you will be nowhere near where you want to be.

Today I am grateful for:
  • Pausing before reacting at a work incident last night.
  • My wife's fabulous poker playing, won us a little money!!
  • Correcting a course which would have taken me to places I don't wan to be...
  • my daughter and her smile..



"I didn't think a lot of myself, but I thought a lot about myself." AA Member

Its true when I was drinking and not in recovery that I was very selfish, yet I hated who I was. I know that is odd, but I think every alcoholic feels the same way. Our "self" was the most important thing, however we couldn't admit that we hated who we were. In recovery it is freeing to know that we can think of others and not be enslaved with our selfish thoughts. "Free me from the bondage of self..." as it says in the third step prayer. The bondage of alcohol is what kept us and the freedom from that is the freedom to love ourselves and others.

Today I am grateful:
  • A friend is helping us get discount hotel rooms for our vacation, hopefully to Maui!!
  • The coffee being made already this morning.
  • A restful night.
  • My meeting last night, and feeling a little more free each day.


Self seeking is leaving....

I more and more feel less and less selfish! Does that make sense. There were times that all I wanted was for me. That I only thought of myself and nothing else. Today it is changing. I care more about people, family and work. My thoughts don't automatically go to what is best for me, but what is best for others as well. I am not perfect. There are still so many times that I seek what can fulfill me right away. I need to center myself when this happens, get grounded and help others. It happens alot when I haven't checked in at a meeting or when I haven't read or prayed or meditated. Keeping myself grounded is the only way to live one day at a time, and if I don't then I cant promise myself the daily reprieve. Today I will have that reprieve and take advantage of not drinking.

Today I am grateful:
  • Work slowly coming together.
  • Surviving the first time speaking at a meeting, and people saying that what I shared helped them.
  • Having everything I need today for a great day.
  • A restful night uninterrupted by alcoholic waking up...shakes, etc...



When all else fails we have our hope...I heard this once a long time ago and didn't really understand it. There is all sorts of hope for us in recovery. The hope I had while drinking is "I hope I don't get caught..I hope I have enough money..I hope I don't see so and so.." This is so different today. I hope for the future and have a pure hope. A hope that is real, a hope that will take me to places only dreamt of before. Over 40 days of recovery, real recovery, and I am starting to finally feel centered. Or at least for today....

Today I am grateful:
  • My wife understands my meeting schedule. Its hard for her because real recovery takes so much time. I am glad for that...
  • My alone time with my daughter to help build our relationship, she is such a momma's girl!!
  • My first time speaking tonight. Its a double winners meeting (Al Anon and AA). I am nervous but I trust.
  • Not being hungover on a Sunday.


Random Fridays/Saturdays...Suiting Up...

I missed yesterday so thought I would stay with the theme and write today. I am getting in the habit of checking myself as I go around daily. Wondering why I am getting angry, what my part is, how to be better. I am glad the program is helping me with this. I don't know if I am just being more present or just a nicer person. I like myself more now that I don't drink. I suppose its a good thing that I am staying in the now more. I did let myself get worked up about a work event, however, those things pass and of course it did.

Today I am grateful for:
  • getting to sleep.
  • A nice weekend ahead.
  • My health coming back, I feel more energy.
  • Meeting with my sponsor and my one of my favorite meetings.
  • My family.


In the Herd...

This time around I am staying in the middle of the Herd. That is the way people stay sober in AA, connected and together. It was hard for me before, I thought I was unique and special. That my alcoholism was different than all these other people...not true. Alcohol is the great equalizer and will bring people to their knees all together. I hope that I stay in the middle of the herd and help those I can. I call people and I try to make meetings early and stay late, all to find people to connect with, even if it is for a brief moment.

Today I am Grateful for:
  • Last Dentist appointment for a little while.
  • Finally being somewhat organized at work? Till tomorrow I guess!
  • Early rising and some alone time.
  • The calm in my heart.


Skipping Stones...

In a meeting this morning the speaker shared an analogy I had never heard before. He compared alcoholics to skipping rocks on a lake. When you first do it the rock hits the lake and bounces really high, then skips again, not as high, and continues skipping till the intervals are less and less and eventually the rock sinks. He likened that to us with our drinking. We hit bottom then rocket up again, hit again and then only go up a little...and so on until our drinking has us sinking to the bottom of a lake. It takes what it takes I hear, and for me I am done with skipping on the top of a lake, I will take the shore or a nice peaceful boat any day!!!

Today I am Grateful for:
  • The speaker and his words that corrected some stinking thinking I had.
  • Summer dress attire at work. NO MORE TIES till fall!!!
  • Feeling a bit more rested than yesterday.
  • My daily reprieve.


If you seek Him...

"(c) That God could and would if He were sought." Pg. 60 Alcoholics Anonymous

The key to this last part is our Higher Power can help us if HE were sought. There is no beating this disease without seeking first our Higher Power. He is not going to come down from on high and touch us and cure us. Much to my chagrin. To get the help from our Higher Power, we must seek out the ways to connect. Prayer and Meditation being the most important ways. These things I have been trying to learn on a daily basis. I feel like I am slacking a bit in that department. The first thing I need to do is hit my knees in the morning, and the last thing I need to do is to hit my knees at night. To stay connected is the only way to relieve myself of these demons and to stay sober.

Today I am Grateful for:
  • The past weekend, it was nice to have an extra day.
  • Coolness in the morning, I don't like it being so hot when I first get up.
  • My favorite meeting tonight.
  • Meeting with my sponsor and starting Chapter 1 of the Big Book. This is how we are going to do the steps and I am excited.
  • Having a job.


Probably NOT!!!

"(b) That probably no human power could have relieved our alcoholism." Pg.60 Alcoholics Anonymous

In the depths of my disease it was easy to stop, or so I thought. I would go a whole week without drinking and be proud of myself. I never lost the obsession or craving. I cannot do that on my own. The power of AA is that a higher power relieves me of my obsession and craving. I am so glad for that, cuz I could NOT do it myself. Nor could my wife, family or friends. I disagree with a word in the passage above. Probably. I know for a fact that I will not stay sober for someone or because of someone. A power above and beyond must help me, must be with me. Acceptance, for me, begins with knowing I cannot stay sober on my own. Only my higher power can help me.

Today I am grateful for:
  • A three day weekend.
  • My meeting this morning and how I am praying it centers me.
  • My tooth healing, and being able to eat normal food.
  • Just living in California, and the lovely marine layer that is over us right now.


The ...ISM

"(a) That we were alcoholic and could not manage our own lives." Pg. 60 Alcoholics Anonymous

I hear a lot about the ism of alcoholism, and how it affects our lives. The more time I get from my last drink, the more I feel the ism. The more I feel how I must actually work a program and not just keep away from the drink. In a meeting today, a crosstalk mixed meeting by the way very fun indeed, there was a lot of talk of "not working the program as good as..." fill in the blank. I guess to me its about working a program that works for you and follows the suggestions. Not everyone wants to blog, or cares what I have to say. For me it helps. As does reading the blogs of others. I need to relax, pray and meditate to center myself. For some they need 3 meetings a week or everyday. Its different, but the same. Stay connected, turn your will to a higher power, and help another person. It says in plain English that we could not manage our own lives. Doing all these things, some of these things or other things, will keep us connected and will help us stay in recovery. Being IN recovery is the goal, not just not drinking.

Today I am Grateful for:
  • A new meeting and the format I love, and truly honest people in the room.
  • Another day without picking up a drink.
  • Helping someone out with some moving today. It felt great!
  • Daddy daughter special dinner tonight! Just me and my girl!! Cant wait.


Half Measures

"Half measures availed us nothing." Pg. 59 Alcoholics Anonymous

Today at my meeting the speaker talked about how he "half measured life" till he got into the program. How he would run over a bed of roses just to park faster. This is so true in my life. I have done so many things half assed and gotten away with it. School, work, relationships, sobriety, almost everything in my life I have done that way. It was easy for some things to get away with it, like school, I always could just get by without doing too much. Work, same thing. As for sobriety, when I did half measures I relapsed. This program is not a half measures program. I have decided in my life its full or nothing. To commit to something completely is the only way that this program can work. Frankly, it is the only way for life to work for the alcoholic. If we don't find the determination to work the program completely, we find ourselves on the outside looking in.

Today I am Grateful:
  • The speaker this morning and how he touch me with his story.
  • The trust of my wife as she went out of town.
  • The ability to go to as many meetings that I can today, my own "meeting marathon"
  • My tooth feeling so much better and not having to use drugs to numb the pain.
  • Progress rather than perfection.


Random Fridays..Suiting Up...

Just checking in...the week was weird, I don't know that I would want this kind of week all the time. I didn't really work, had some meetings out of LA area that kept me away from the family and meetings for a couple days. Then went to the dentist and that has kept me grounded for a couple days. Finally get to see my sponsor tomorrow and go to my favorite meeting. Anyways, my head really didn't get away from me that much, and when it did I was able to call someone. I need to get connected again. My wife is going out of town for a day or so and taking the daughter to visit a friend. Maybe I will plan a marathon Saturday meeting day. Just going from one meeting to another till the Laker game starts. This could be the start of something cool...I will keep you informed...

Today I am Grateful:
  • That I only needed Advil for the pain today, the codeine Tylenol was there but I didn't need it.
  • The 3 day weekend ahead.
  • My brilliant plan of a mini meeting marathon tomorrow. Lets see if it works.
  • My family night tonight...


One More day...

Today was awesome to see some things actually happening in sobriety. I avoided the dentist like the plague while I was drinking, I mean who didn't? Right? Anyways I have had a "dead" tooth for about years, only having had it treated once. Well, I finally confronted that Demon and voila I am now sitting here with an extracted tooth, and I am still alive. Well check one on my 5 year to do list. The other one is taxes from 2003 for the state of California. Well, not wanting to avoid anything anymore I finally got a hold of someone and fixed that too, started a restitution plan and there you have it. The promises are coming "sometimes quickly, sometimes slowly...." I got out of my routine and it got in my head. My sponsor told me that we alcoholics need our routine especially in early sobriety, so back to the routine, I cant get out of it, it seems to start the radio in my head....
Today I am Grateful for:
  • Finally resolving the tax thing and the dentist all in the same day.
  • Seeing my family again.
  • Getting back into the routine at work.
  • Not being so afraid anymore.


I phone post...

I am posting from my I Phone as I wait for a meeting with a client. Pretty hard to do and not fun. So it will be short...I am just staying in the day sort of feeling right now. Trying hard not to try to hard, ya know? Taking what comes and just dealing.
Today I am grateful for
my wife and her support
my sponsor
living today
my I phone being able to connect to the internet
getting to see my daughter soon.


Help Me Help You!!

As a newcomer I sometimes get absorbed in what can the meeting do for me. The real question is what can I do for the meeting/group. There is always someone with less time than me, more that not, at the meetings I am at. I have found that I don't go up to them to talk and fellowship. I find my voice in my head saying, "what do you know, you cant possibly help that person". Well the truth is I can, and the truth is that if I don't try and help those people I am going to drink again. So I have made a commitment that if there is someone with less than my time, I am going to talk to them. Maybe it will be easier for me to relate to them not being so far from the drink. I hope I can help them.
Today I am grateful for:
  • Everyone being safe after that earthquake last night, gotta love California.
  • My daughters smile.
  • A brisk Monday, where I fell full of energy and not slow from a weekend binge.
  • Closer to some promises, and working towards others.
  • Being reconnected with my sponsor after his oral surgery. Ouch...


The Anger within...

Someone said at a meeting that they use anger like alcohol, when they get angry it acts like a cover up of all the emotions we mask when we drink. Fear, sadness, loneliness, etc. This is our main problem as alcoholics, covering up. I did it with everything. I didn't want anyone to see how hurt, lonely angry scared I was. I find that I do that with anger also. Instead of sitting in and dealing with my true emotion. If I just get angry, everything goes away. My fear etc is masked by my anger. Its such a vicious cycle and the only way I find myself getting better is to calm down, take a breath and try and see my part in the mess. This is why my spiritual growth is so important in the program, that will keep me grounded.

Today I am grateful for:
  • A great weekend.
  • My wife and daughter.
  • Lakers in SEVEN!!!!
  • Learning and growing.
  • 30 days...and counting.


Growing or going...

In my meeting today the speaker shared that "you re either growing or going.." The problem with me is that all the times before I didn't understand the action of this program. Getting in the middle of the Herd as they say. Doing service for others, helping the less fortunate and really showing up and suiting up. I learned that I cannot and will not survive without others in this program. It felt really good this morning to be surrounded by other alcoholics because I felt alone for the last couple days. As we all know isolation and feeling alone all lead to drinking. The beauty of the program is that we don't have to be alone ever. I know there are people out there that I don't even know in the program that would sit and talk to me if I asked. I hope that I can do that for others too...
On a separate note, I was a little heated this last 24 hours, and I feel like my Friday post was not very nice. I left it up because that is where I was, and that is really what I was feeling. But I need to recognize that I was upset, and the reason for it. Thanks for following me.

Today I am Grateful for:
  • The reset button I have in life, whether I have to hit it everyday or every hour it is there.
  • The fun Saturday we have planned.
  • An honest share and stories from other drunks this morning.
  • My sponsor helping me to get grounded, even though he is going through some major shit...
  • The calm feeling I have now today, even though this morning didn't start off that way.
  • LOVE.


Random Fridays...Suiting up...

I thought I would start something called random Fridays. I am just going to write about things, maybe recovery, maybe not. Just what I am feeling inside and how I am dealing with things. Like checking in at a meeting, you don't have to stay on topic, just checking in with fellow drunks.
I just finished reading "Tweak" by Nic Scheff and I gotta say I wasn't impressed. This guys story is like so many others I have heard in the room, and frankly I didn't get it. Why is this guy on the bestseller list? I should publish my journal and maybe I can make some money. Also, his attitude in the book is horrible. I knew he was going to relapse when I was reading. What did he expect when he went to live with a CODA girlfriend who used? He was going to stay clean? Then he got clean, and then in the afterword he was living in Georgia clean, then in the prologue he had relapsed, but "not on meth, just prescription pills." Oh that makes it better. Then he starts a blog and maybe writes 10 times or less. Then its "I'm stopping this blog thing to go find myself in Portland, I am so over LA." Whatever dude, I would rather hear stories in the rooms about people who have MUCH worse problems and are facing them. I don't know why I am so heated over this guy? Maybe I see myself in him and am lashing out. I mean lets be honest, I relapse way more than him. Maybe I am projecting my hatred for myself on to him. I don't know. Wow that felt good. One good thing though is it reminded my I needed to buy Emmit Fox's "Sermon on the Mount". I had heard about it in the rooms but forgot about it, and he talks about it in the book. Some good things do come from shit I guess.
I am going to write him a letter or something. Or maybe I just did?

Today I am grateful for:
  • Fantastical Friday. I get to go to a movie, something I really love to do and has become something to help me with my sobriety. It takes time away from thinking about hitting the bar.
  • Finally getting to sleep last night.
  • My body getting its bearings finally.
  • Having a clean shirt for work, when I thought I was all out.
  • Safely arriving at work, the drivers were insane today.


God within me...

In Twenty Four Hours a day this morning, I read about God (or Higher Power whichever you choose) being in all of us. Seeing what no one else, not even ourselves sometimes, can see. It is comforting to know that I am changing and growing closer to my Higher Power. The change that I am feeling is real and I need to understand that. I called a fellow AA'er yesterday when I was feeling shifty and he said to me something that I really understand. He said "The Buddhist say 'You are what you speak'" Truer words have never been spoken. We were talking about how I have a chronic cycle and like every 25 to 90 days I relapse. He told me to stop saying that. Live today (of course) and don't vocalize those words.
I hope my Higher Power sees things that I don't even see yet. Things that can make me change and grow to be the best I can. Is it possible that the greatest dreams I had early in my life can now come true? I am starting to believe it..

Today I am Grateful for:
  • A friend who started a workout blog and inspired me to get in the gym again. I am attacking it like a twelve step program. " I only have to go to the gym today, only workout today!" That cracks me up, but you know its working.
  • Wakin up refreshed and anxiety free.
  • The week flying by for me.
  • The love of the program.
  • When my daughter says Mommy, it makes my wife so happy....



I find that the more I go to the rooms, the more fellowship I feel and I love it. My favorite stag meeting was last night and I always feel so much love in these rooms...I am grateful for those feelings and for plugging away. The obsession is slowly moving away, and the further away I get from the drink the better!!!

Today I am grateful for:
  • The Fellowship.
  • The quiet in the morning before everyone wakes up, its nice to be able to read and write early.
  • Hump day!
  • God doing for me....



Yesterday a wise old timer spoke these words while speaking to a meeting. I stopped and wrote them down. He went on to say get rid of these things that we are finding out while in recovery, don't beat yourself up anymore over our mistakes. Too often Alcoholics love to "be on the cross". The truth is we love to see and be seen, and suffer all too endlessly for our transgressions. Luckily in this program we can learn not to do this. I do this all the time. I try and punish myself endlessly for things I have to let go. It was good to hear this message, good to know that I am not the only one that feels this way. What a blessing it is to know I don't have to hold on to those character defects, or flog myself over my transgressions. I can let them go, and they don't have to be mine anymore. Very cool concept indeed....

Today I am grateful for:
  • My favorite stag meeting tonight.
  • The fog that is being lifted from my mind, my thoughts are getting clearer the farther away from the drink I get.
  • One day..Today...
  • Trust slowly coming back to my marriage.


Thy Will, not mine...

"If we still cling to something we will not let go, we ask God to help us be willing."
Alcoholics Anonymous, p.76

Last night I went to a meeting where step 3 was the topic. Truly turning over my will has been the hardest thing ever. Self will has made me run amuck for over 37 years. My life run my me is not a life I want. This morning I gave it over to God and am learning each day to do so. Its almost as if what I want doesn't matter, only what I can do to be shown how to live. Each day I do this, I become closer to my Higher Power. Closer to losing this obsession and closer to fulfilling the promises.

Today I am grateful for:
  • Making it a GREAT Monday.
  • My seriousness in recovery.
  • So many meetings that I like being available today.
  • My will being turned over today, if I can be honest and humble, and the great things that will happen.


Calmer than you are Dude...

"Calmness is constructive of good. Agitation is destructive of good. I should not rush into action. I should first "be still and know that He is God"." Twenty Four Hours a Day for May 10

I still find myself getting agitated quickly. I believe some is to do with the physiological quitting of drinking still, however mostly because I am learning to change my thought pattern. I must pause, reflect and then answer or react to the best of my ability. Everyday I do that, I can win most of my battles and wars.

I went to a 10th step workshop meeting when I was out of town and really learned a lot from a surprising source, or so I thought at the time. It just goes to show, no matter the place or person, alcohol is the great equalizer.

Today I am grateful for:
  • The safe return home from our trip.
  • Being able to be with my Mom and wife on Mothers Day, sober.
  • Calming down
  • SLOWING down.
  • The meeting week ahead and the joy it brings.



They say that you spent so much of your time drinking that you will need to replace that with something. I spend more time now reading in the program, about the program. My work is doing better, many things that suffered when I was drinking are now being taken care of. It is a matter of putting other things as a priority. That is what is important.

Today I am grateful for:
  • My job, many of my friends are without and I pray that it changes soon for them.
  • The ability to go to visit my family.
  • Finding a meeting in a town 300 miles away.
  • The silent calm that came over me today when drinking crept into my head.
  • The trust of my wife on a money issue, again. Sobriety does create miracles.



In the program I have been inspired to be better. I am now looking for things that I can do to be of service and to help. I have not perfected this concept, however I am trying to "practice" this concept. That is important to me that I am practicing the principles of AA. Humility and Responsibility being the two first. I think that my whole life I will be working on those two, because I am such a egoist!!! The good thing that is if I pause and think about what I am doing my mind can relax and I can put my ego in check.

Today I am grateful for:
  • Another day closer to the weekend.
  • That my house cooled down last night.
  • Other sober alcoholics that I can call when I need help.
  • Slowly building trust back, by just being honest.



Last night's meeting was great. This is the first time I had been and it is by far and away the best AA meeting I have ever been to. It's a men's stag and the format is almost like a free for all. Lots of crosstalk and HONEST sharing. I really liked it...on that note, most of the sharing was on pausing and then reacting. Taking that second to think and not just to go with our gut reaction. This is an amazing concept. If I can practice this skill I am sure to improve my communication and my life. My thoughts are so jumbled, but I know that I treated my alcoholism last night, and am treating it this morning. I am going to practice that trait today and pause, pause, pause....

Today I am Grateful for:
  • Finding a meeting that spoke to me like none other ever before.
  • The honesty I feel in the rooms of AA.
  • Being there for my wife when she needed me and not having to lie about where I was.
  • The newness of today.



Today I am just grateful. Grateful to be in the program, and yet scared at the same time. I hope each day that I get a daily reprieve I will do the best I can with it. Yesterday I went to a meeting where one of the newcomers shared about football season and how was he going to make it without drinking? Suddenly I felt overcome with dread at the same question. Of course someone with some time shared afterwards that it only takes today, you can drink tomorrow if you want. That is what I am going with, today. And today, I am not drinking. I treated my alcoholism this morning, and I have a busy day ahead. But by the Grace of God....

Today I am grateful:
  • Restful sleep not interrupted by the alcohol.
  • My wife's trust on a money issue this morning.
  • God doing for me what I cant do for myself.
  • For the Stag meeting tonight and reading with my sponsor.


Daily reprieve...

"Each morning I wake up and suffer from untreated alcoholism, I get to treat it on a daily basis". Anonymous AA Member.

I think I am going to make a sign and put it somewhere that says "You suffer from untreated alcoholism, treat it." That way each day I wake up I can understand that if not treated I will succumb to my disease. I like that thought process, that I need to treat myself each day. We can do this in several ways, and several times a day if need be. For me today its about meditating this morning, a meeting, and acting as if....

Today I am grateful for:
  • The beautiful sunshine.
  • Having everything I need, my Higher Power sees to that.
  • The speakers touching words this morning.


United we stand...

"But out of this frightening and at first disrupting experience the conviction grew that A.A.'s had to hang together or die separately." Alcoholics Anonymous Pg.xix (Fourth Edition)

There is an AA saying that says, "I drink we stay sober", meaning alone alcoholics will drink, but together we won't. This is so true. This time around I am calling another drunk on a daily basis. I just returned from my favorite meeting and got some more numbers to call when my thinking goes left. I did that this week. I started to recognize what happens when I don't stay connected. I DRINK. This concept is so profound that in 1950 they understood it. I alone do not have the power to beat this disease. Its with the help of my Higher Power and the fellowship that I can do it. I can honestly say that this concept has fell on my deaf ears for over 2 years. I used to feel in danger and not call anyone, and then an hour later would be pounding my fist on the bar saying how did this happen again. That is why I NEED PEOPLE. I love this program today. I know I don't need to drink today. Nothing is bad or good enough to make me drink.

Today I am grateful for:
  • My forgiving wife.
  • My program.
  • Hearing a speaker today talk how her 6 year old daughter died and she didn't drink. Then realizing that nothing is so bad in my life that I have to pick up the bottle.
  • A fun Saturday full of rest and Love.


Humble Pie....

"All A.A. progress can be reckoned in terms of just two words: humility and responsibility. Our whole spiritual development can be accurately measured by our degree of adherence to these magnificent standards" AS BILL SEES IT, p. 271

These words are so true. I was never humble as a drunk, I was either cocky and arrogant. Or so full of remorse and self hatred that I couldn't see straight. When I first started in the program I thought I was humble, or at least getting humble. That was so far from the truth it was disgusting. I kept relapsing and then going thru my whole cycle it was so sick. I would go to a bar in my relapse and be cocky and arrogant and buy drinks for everyone, like I was a big shot. The truth was I probably either borrowed that money or was using money that was meant for something else. And responsibility? Wow, it was everyone else's fault. The deal didn't close because so and so didn't do their job, or I drank because you made me so mad. It was amazing to see how much I didn't take responsibility or become humble. This time around I am trying to just shut up and listen and to take responsibility for what I have done, and frankly what I am still doing. Just to be humble enough to know that when a sober person, that has some time, tells me to do something, I NEED TO DO IT. That person has stayed sober so obviously there is something they are doing right.

Today I am grateful for...
  • FRIDAY!!!!
  • The serenity I feel for the meeting this morning.
  • Forgiveness
  • Having had dinner with my sponsor and running into another alcoholic and the conversation we had.

Expect Miracles...

In the program we are told to expect miracles. For me I never understood that. I think this time around I am trying to grasp at any little thing I can, and I am expecting miracles. My life has been full of them already, my Higher Power has always wanted me to succeed. It is a miracle that I am even alive given some of the things that have happened. It is a miracle that we have our daughter, and that has helped me so much. When I am in a meeting and I look around I see all the miracles that my Higher Power has made around me. I see people who can become anything they want, that come from places I cant even imagine. Little things make me think about miracles now, things that other people would call coincidence. Things that might just be chances in others minds are events that my Higher Power controls. Meeting a new sponsor, moving to meetings that I hear about that I end up loving, working closer to meetings. These are all things that are keeping me in the right directions. I pray today to take advantage of these miracles. To recognize them when my Higher Power makes them available.

Today I am grateful.....
  • For the miracle of my family and them staying with me.
  • That my side of the street is being cleaned.
  • Knowing there are several meetings I can attend today.
  • It seems my health is good and I am feeling stronger day by day.
  • Realizing I am POWERLESS.


LIfe on Life's terms...

Today I am just living life on life's terms. I heard someone share this morning at my meeting about this. Sometimes we just have to do it...some days that's all I can do. Not drink, go to a meeting and try to stay grounded on life's terms.

Today I am grateful:
  • For getting to my meeting on time, and being able to let go when half of the people kept showing up almost 30 minutes into the meeting. I hate that, and I was able to let it go.
  • Hearing a share from a guy that made my meeting worth it.
  • Even though I forgot an important appointment, my wife didn't get upset. I love that we are both growing.
  • Having a job and getting closer to economic security.


Look at your feet...

My sponsor told me that when things are getting crazy in his head he looks at his feet. It will keep you present and in a place where its TODAY that matters. My drinking put me anywhere but present. This morning all I have to worry about is TODAY. Don't drink or use TODAY. Be honest and willing. That is what I am going to do, be honest and willing.

Today I am grateful for:
  • The good nights sleep I got.
  • Having a job.
  • The Stag meeting tonight and getting to meet with my sponsor.
  • Trying out serenity.


Spinning out of control

Even when I don't drink my thoughts can spin out of control. I heard at a meeting once that alcoholics imagine the worst things that never even happened. That is me to a T. False Evidence Appearing Real. That is what fear is to me. It happened on Saturday. Something went awry with a project and immediately my mind jumped to the worst possible situation. Then I proceeded to act on those thoughts...wow...I had to go outside and take a walk and understand that I need to let Go and LET GOD!!! The farther away from the drink I get, the more I realize that my head needs healing too!!! The road seems to get longer daily, not shorter! I guess that is why it is one day at a time!

Today I am grateful for:
  • Catching up with an old friend in the program when my thoughts turned left on me.
  • My sponsor calling me back when he did.
  • The ability to sleep well last night.
  • Knowing that dinner will be done when I get home, the crock pot is the best.


Toxic Thoughts...

I have found myself this last week in a spin of toxic thoughts. Anything from you will never beat this disease to you will never be a good father, son, husband, friend, (fill in the blank). Today I was watching a minister we watch every Sunday and he spoke of Toxic thoughts. I couldn't believe what I was hearing, because it was exactly what I was thinking all week long. He spoke of physical "cleansing" that is recommended by doctors to get all the toxins out of our body. He then spoke of a mental cleansing. To replace our old thoughts with new ones. He compared this with having a glass full of dirty water, all sorts of sand, and bits of dirt. We don't need to dump the water out, all we have to do is keep pouring clean water into the glass, and eventually the glass will be full of clean fresh water. This is the same with my alcoholism. If I keep pumping good things into my glass, eventually it will be full of clean fresh thoughts, of which I can grow in my recovery and rid myself of this physical and mental obsession.

Today I am Grateful for:
  • A message today for happiness.
  • Waking up and not coming too, like I used to on so many Sunday mornings.
  • The quiet time with my daughter this morning while my wife slept.
  • A new sponsor who really cares and connects with me.


Taking out what I put in...

In 24 hours a day today it talks about taking out good things of life when we are sober. Yesterday it spoke of taking out bad things when we were drinking. This can be no closer than the truth for me. When I am drinking, I completely check out. I am so self absorbed that I don't care or need anything. IT is such a nicer side of the street when I am sober. I interact with people. I take care of myself and my family. I enjoy the time during the day and don't wonder how it is already 9 o'clock at night, and I am drunk. Reaping what I sow has become an important part of sobriety. I can enjoy the fruits of my labor and sometimes just sit and listen is enough for me.

Today I am grateful for:
  • Being sober to watch playoff Basketball.
  • Awaking early this morning and not "coming to"
  • The nice spring weather.
  • The conversation with my mother last night, its nice to start to heal wounds.


Staying in the moment...

This morning was tough. Really tough for me to stay in the moment. I awoke with no problem and was excited to go to my Saturday meeting. I got up did my normal coffee routine and checked my mail. There it was, the invite to Dallas to see the Cowboys play my favorite team, from a good friend of mine. This friend does not know about my struggle, as he lives very far away and when we do talk, its mostly of sports and family. Without skipping a beat my mind went straight to insanity. "How am I gonna not drink or use while there?" Now, this is happening in December mind you, but in 1 minute I had already played out the whole tape. Whats going to happen and how in the world I am going to get through it. I had to stop. Concentrate on today. Now. This minute. I drove to my meeting and was able to get myself back in the moment about 10 minutes into my meeting. I am glad I did as it was a very good meeting. This is something new to me, living in the moment. Being an alcoholic, things were either thinking about the past or future. Never being present for anything. I checked out A LOT!!! Today I can concentrate on how to live today and my Higher Power will give me the answers. I don't need the answers for December, only for today. It's like taking a test in first grade and wanting the answers for freshman year of high school. That makes little sense, if any at all.

Today I am grateful for:
  • My meeting and the serenity it brought to me.
  • Learning a little more about "present me"
  • The sunny weather today, and the smile it brings to my family.


Insane in the Brain!

"...where alcohol was concerned we have been strangely insane." AA Big Book pg.38

It seems that as I read the big book , the theme of insanity and insanity of alcoholics actions are everywhere. They give examples of people who knew they were alcoholics and yet were "powerless over the first drink". That is me. I have accepted that no power, other than my Higher Power, can keep me sober. Not me, not my wife, my kids, the thought of dying, nothing. In the end of Chapter 3 of the Big Book, it talks directly about only our Higher Power keeping us from that first drink. This is so true. I attended meetings when I first was trying to get sober where a guy used to say this is a "progressive and terminal disease" and that alcohol was "waiting outside that door doing push ups". Our disease only gets worse with time, not better. IT is waiting and is ready for us to again take that sip. I get a daily reprieve. That is what I am learning. I have not written for a couple days, things have been so hectic, but I know that if I don't continue to write, pray, meditate and read, I will not beat this. The daily thought talked about each time an alcoholic does any of these things, we are paying a bit towards our drinking insurance policy. Each of these things helps to insure us not to drink. But the reality is this, I am insane when it comes to alcohol. I must give my Higher Power control over my drinking. I alone will never succeed.

Today I am grateful:

  • For the ability to meditate this morning in quiet time.
  • My willingness to give it to God.
  • Understanding better each day my helplessness over this disease.
  • Friday and the nice weekend ahead.


Let me be honest...

Wow that title even makes me cringe. If you are reading this and you know me than I have lied to you. If you are reading this and don't know me, that's not a lie! In the rooms of AA I have found many character defects, but none as overwhelming as dishonesty. I lied about everything, then I told more lies to cover those lies. On another Blog I read a quote by Fr. Leo that spoke about lying, then lying some more to cover it up. That was me to the T. And if I am to be honest, I still have such a problem with lying. I tell the stupidest, most annoying lies. I lie about everything. I started when I was a kid to cover up things and it has become my nature. This is going to be the hardest road for my recovery. I need help on this. Anyone who reads this please comment and let me know what has helped you be more honest in your lives. I will write more later about this, but for now I am just looking for some help if you can...thanks.

Today I am grateful for:
  • Having a job.
  • My ability to refresh each day. I never was able to do that.
  • Working from home today.
  • My daughters smile.


Wreckage of the Past...

"We will not regret the past nor wish to shut the door on it." AA Big Book pg. 83

For me this has a new meaning this time in sobriety. I was getting someone coffee this morning, and when I left I saw a big black limo parked outside the Starbucks. This was not odd, as I live right next to a major airport and the limos and drivers often hang out at Starbucks waiting for their fares. As I saw it, I completely flashed to a time on a bender that I was going to Las Vegas. I skipped the whole taxi line at the airport and paid almost $100 just to get in a limo, thinking I was so great. I don't know why I flashed so vividly on this memory, or what it meant. I cringed, I started down the path of hating myself and what I did. Then I stopped, I remembered this phrase in the Big Book and just accepted what I was. An alcoholic with a past, and that I was exactly where my Higher Power wanted me this morning. Getting coffee for a friend. In my previous attempts at sobriety this trigger could have sent me spinning into a self loathing and hatred that, if not the same day someday soon, would have me drinking again. Just because "Gee I did so many things wrong, how can I be forgiven, or even forgive myself." It was fitting that it was Easter morning, as my Higher Power believes that I can be forgiven, and that I, too, may rise again from the depths and be reborn. I get to do that each day, and to forgive myself is even more important.

Today I am grateful:

  • For the Power of Forgiveness.
  • The ability to remember the hurt, but not to repeat the hurt.
  • Starting to understand the wreckage of my past, and to play the tape all the way through so as not to repeat it.