Thursday, March 26, 2009

Sunshine falling down...

Sunshine falling down, it’s a grace I feel all around.
Clouds drift by across spring’s serene blue sky,
Gentle breezes nudge me on the journey I’ve begun to be.
The squirrels and I shall scamper so as to let nothing hamper
The path that has been set aside as my guide
To a life well lived one day at a time.


I thought a nice warm bath, some chamomile tea and a bit of classical music would be enough to lull me to that place where I wish for sleep to come. NOT EVEN CLOSE!!!!!

I can feel myself buzzing sometimes it gets so intense. I just want to feel tired. It's after midnight. Is that too much to ask? I have to get up early to make the Woodstock meeting via bus & my pickup at Price Chopper. I've got a hunch that I am not going to wake up tired, regardless of how late I stay up. That is so NOT good!

For a while I could see my hands shaking I was zipping along so nicely. I could feel myself kick it up a notch tonight at the Danielson meeting. I did not kick it up a notch with Emeril either.

Now there's this voice in the back of my head telling me that I shouldn't have talked about being a bit manic, more than just slightly revved up. That thought makes no sense since intelligent people can figure it out for themselves. The coffee questions are probably inevitable at this point. Ten days on meds and I am having those moments where I feel like I am blasting off into orbit! I feel exposed and vulnerable...and that is uncomfortable but I have to deal with it. Honest, open minded and willing keep me sane and sober.

Anxiety, restlessness, shaking, unusual heart beat and sleeplessness are side effects...which is so good for mania why again? LOL Maybe I am feeling the side effects? I guess the thing to do is make constructive use of my time this evening/morning and call my "people" in the morning. Some times I feel like I am the guest of honor at a three ring circus but don't worry...I'm not giving my seat away.

I'm going to work on Father Jim's third question. That'll keep me very busy for a while. Hopefully my dreams will come calling sooner rather than later carrying me away to that land of white clouds and rest just over the horizon where I cannot see clearly.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009


So I am sitting at this meeting (there's something unusual for me, huh? LMAO) and this person is talking about a Gratitude Bag. A Gratitude Bag? Huh? What's that I think to myself?

Well, in early sobriety my friend's sponsor suggested this thing called a gratitude bag. It is easy to construct.
1. Write out a gratitude list.
2. Get some scraps of paper.
3. Write a different item you are grateful for on each slip of paper.
4. Fill the bag.
5. When filled with self pity or negativity, pull slips of paper out of
the bag until you feel grateful.
6. Put paper back in bag for future use.
7. Always feel free to add to the bag when something new to be grateful
for comes to your mind.

Pretty neat, huh? Well, I certainly think so. I think I may make mine a GRATITUDE BOX...and I will decorate it...and celebrate that I do indeed feel so much gratitude so much of the time. Life is as good as I believe it to be. ATTITUDE OF GRATITUDE. ATTITUDE!!!!!!

It was a really good meeting and it reminded me that when there is half a glass of something it is my attitude that determines whether I see that glass as half full or half empty. If I focus on the positive, then I don't have time for the negatives and I certainly feel much better if I am in that positive space that only I can take me to.

Today is the day that I have been given. I shall be glad and rejoice in it.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Plotting & Planning

I woke up at 5 AM with a kidney call...haven't been able to get back t o sleep. I spent 40 minutes lying & trying to no avail. UGH! It's may be a long day! Well, it had to start sometime, right? On the bright, I am not tired per se but my eyes are heavy. For one experiencing a bit of mania, that's actually a very good sign.

My 'to-do' list is quite extensive. Of course, I ascribe to the theory that a 'to-do' list should get done....EVENTUALLY! Well, over the course of the next few days I will get all this STUFF done while adding to it whatever else comes up...which will get done sooner or later. I never got the point of sweating over doing everything immediately. Jeepers! I'm only one person. However, writing down what I need to do gives me attainable goals that I can see and visible results for my efforts. It's Organization 101 for me. I laugh when folks tell me how I am so naturally organized. I AM SO NOT NATURALLY ORGANIZED!!! LMAO I have to work at it and remember every little trick that I have ever learned, but remember and utilize I do...regularly. Life would be too unmanageable if I didn't. Putting things in writing (my datebook & calendar are my lifelines) and sticking to a routine helps with organization as well. I recommend organization to anyone who has never tried it.

Geez, it's 7:30ish and I've already crossed off 2 1/2 things on my 'to-do' list. Blogging was on my 'to-do' list. LMAO

I have a bunch ESSC stuff to do. I am trying to gather a committee together to look into the possibility of a big fall, craft/flea market, field day kinda thang. I've already recruited a bunch of people to my cause. I'm very excited. I know with my mind in high gear I can come up with ideas and all, but I do suspect the mania will wear off sooner or later. Assistance is required to bring a good, solid concept to fruition. So far so good. The duckies seem to be cooperating and getting in line.

Venue may be the biggest challenge. We could solicit the town for use of public property but that didn't turn out so well with the old armory. One official offered it to us only to have another rescind the offer due to 'issues' with the property. Of course, politicking aint our strong suit at the club. And it doesn't help that we incorporated as an LLC because the cost of being a 501c(3) was prohibitive at the time. STEPPING STONES! These things are simply stepping stones.

***AN ASIDE: At a meeting one time I heard someone say that the difference between stumbling blocks and stepping stones is who we use them. Makes sense to me. In actuality what's the difference between the cow sh*t that gives the country air it's distinctive essence and fertilzer?

Just got an email. I have to track down the kid. She's having a difficult time and has been placed. Gonna make some phone calls to see if I can make contact. Her attitude gets her in more trouble!

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Manic Monday...Manic Tuesday...Manic Wednesday...

I walked to the morning meeting at the club today. What a glorious day for walking! Afterward, I went over to the gym at the community center and worked out for a bit then walked home. I landed long enough to check my emails and do a couple of chores here before heading out to the college.

I managed to find the 9-volt battery to stop the damn smoke detector from chirping in that annoying manner that only a smoke detector can succeed in chirping in. Small victories count when the alternative is defeat at the hands of an inexpensive electronic nuisance. I have a smoke detector in my kitchen and in my bedroom (less than 6 feet apart) and I have one at the bottom of the stairwell by the door. I should think one in the attic would have been in order as well. That seems like a more likely place for a fire to start undetected. Duh! Well, 3 of those things in a 3 room apartment is surely enough for my standards.

On the way to the college Lisa from church stopped (actually she turned around and then stopped) to ask if I needed a ride. I was a few feet from the entrance to QV at that point. I am continually amazed that people find it damn near impossible to believe that I walk because I enjoy walking. I find an empowerment in it that I truly enjoy. It comes with a sense of independence and accomplishment. I find it reinforces all the positive things that I am doing. Keep in mind, this is just not my mania speaking. I feel this all the time when I set upon whatever journey putting one foot in front of the other. It's what I do. It's become a part of who I am.

Joey wants me to keep his car here for him while he is in the island doing his thing. The guy at the garage says it does not start which is just fine by me. I think about how easy it would be to get into those old ("bad") habits of just hopping in a car and going. It's nice for shopping and big errands to have access to a vehicle which is something I can usually negotiate if need be. This different pace of life is so much a joy to me. I also enjoy the fact that I am not spending almost all my disposable income on gas and insurance and taxes and registration and repairs. I get to make other choices on how I spend my money. That's pretty kewl.

Back from the tangent...

I got to the college and couldn't find Ann...the reason I had gone over there in the first place. I had a lovely conversation with SuHa. We chatted for a bit and then I headed to the auditorium where I caught up with Ann. We had a nice visit. I got to sign her quilt. Funny, I knew I was gonna sign it 'Puppet' cause I put some thought into that but I did not take the time to think out what message I was gonna write. Details! Details! Details! I figured it out. The thoughts always come and the words follow. It wasn't profound but it was real and that's the important part to me.

I hiked home and managed to do a few more chores. There's always something to do, isn't there? Well, that's good for me right now. I have lots of energy and I NEED to work it off. I called and arranged my ride from Price Chopper to the "Never on Time" meeting in the morning. I will take the transit bus up to Putnam. I like the convenience of the bus. It does get me to where I need to go in a reasonably timely sort of fashion.

I made a slamming supper. I had started to marinate the pork chop yesterday so it had time to be delightfully flavorful. YUM! Then I fried up some spinach in olive oil with onion, garlic, salt, pepper and Romano cheese and topped the meal off with half of one of those mini corn muffins. They are so cute! I have a full dinner for tomorrow night with the leftovers. If you think cooking for one or two is difficult, it's just cause you aint cooked for my diet!!! It's challenging to say the least. I want to make big batches of everything. Well, I am getting better...progress not perfection.

I hoofed it to the meeting tonight. It was well worth it. The speaker was incredible. I found a missing piece of my puzzle, as it were. Folks talk about how they had good times partying, how they used to drink socially and I have never 'gotten' that. For me it was about dissolving that barrier so I felt like a part of the crowd. I used it to create the illusion that I didn't feel like an outsider but without a substance I always did. Getting sober has changed that in ways I can't quite comprehend so explaining them is not gonna happen at this point. More clarity will come with time. It always has.

I was sitting in the meeting at toward the end all hyped up. I was having trouble sitting still. I could feel the energy of the mania coursing through me. It gets pretty intense at times. I had tried cutting back on my caffeine, telling myself that was the cause. I knew better but I didn't want to acknowledge that. Now, granted, caffeine is not my friend about now. I really don't need any substance giving me any more energy.

I left a message for my doctor and my therapist a couple of days ago but haven't heard from them. Time flies with this mania. I've lost track of the fact that was Monday when I called them. The agency has communication issues and they don't always deliver messages as they should. Been there done that on this one before. So, I put a note on my desk calendar to call tomorrow. This flying without a net crap is just that...CRAP! It is up to me to be proactive. I have to pay attention to not letting time fly by me. This IS my life after all. Who better to live it than me? Who better to take charge of the parts of it that need to be taken charge of?

I could keep writing for hours. REALLY! My racing thoughts do not require documentation however. I need to do what I have to do online and then get my computer shut down so I can get to bed at a decent hour. I have an early wake up call. Besides, giving in to the urge to stay up late and get up early just compounds the problem. Proper sleep is essential, especially now.

So, I'm zipping outta here!

Sunday, March 15, 2009


Most of the time I don't even know I have neighbors. This is NOT one of those times. I don't what the hell is wrong with those folks but sometimes it just seems that they blow a head gasket. I am so freakin grateful to be single! TRUST ME!

He was screaming something (peppered with much profanity) about her having a 5 year old daughter and what kind of mother would be downstairs (visiting a neighbor?) when their kid is upstairs. Then the doors start slamming and someone is revving the motor on the car...the car that she broke the driver's side window out of last front of her kid. The little girl was yelling to someone...mommy or daddy...I suppose whichever one left through the slamming door.

I've got this ball in my stomach, kinda like I swallowed a whole brick without chewing first. Tossing my cookies would be a relief right now. Really.

The other neighbor was arguing with his fiance (don't marry him lady) earlier today or yesterday. I forget. It's kind of a gray recollection. He was hollering cause the tape he put on the back door (sick puppy) wasn't broke but he was sure she had snuck out the front door while he was away.

Yuppers! It is entirely possible that I have lunatics on BOTH sides of me. This isn't normal, right? I mean, I've lived other places and not had all this madness and mayhem going on around me. Was it just a fluke that I never heard anything like this before? I mean, I've lived it before...but I haven't been on the sidelines of it. I don't believe that I care for this perspective one bit, thank you very much. For 13 1/2 years I lived this until I got sober and sane and realized I could walk away.

God help me to throw up or stop shaking...or anything else that might help about now. The car has pulled out of the driveway and it is quiet now. Still, I wait for the other shoe to drop. It just feels like that will happen. I believe that is the feeling known as foreboding. Sucks to live that again.

I'd like to go into my room, shut the door, turn the radio on and crawl under the covers. Well, that's a hell of a thing. I have other things to get done right now. So, I took some ginger in the hopes it would make my tummy happy and I will grab my to-do list and go about my business. Tomorrow I will reread what I've written here. I'll need to do that with a little perspective garnered from the passage of time. Perhaps that will make it make more sense to me. This is too guttural to be dealt with rationally in the here and now.

As for the rest of my day...well that went rather well. I got my ride to church in the morning...good sermon. Deep. I got some things done here and then it occurred to me that it was too beautiful day to stay inside so I got out and walked the "block." Well, it was actually a 3.5 mile jaunt that took me down North Street to Maple and then down Rock Avenue and back down 12 to get home. What a wonderful day to be out and about, taking it all in!!!

I took some photos while I was out. I have to get a good look at them on my computer. I have an idea...just an inkling of what I want to do with them. They aren't the beautiful scenery type pictures. I was just inspired with a thought while I was walking. I had grabbed my camera cause it seems when I don't, there is always something I do want to take a picture of with the fool thang. Details to follow but don't expect film at eleven. It's a digital camera for crying out loud. Besides, I have to sit on it and see where inspiration takes me.

I baked a piece of fish for supper and it came out mahvelous dahling, absolutely mahvelous. I still got it!!! Oh yea, I can cook. I had some broccoli on the side...loaded it up with salt. That will have to do until I can get that salt lick set up in my kitchen. Hopefully that will convince my blood pressure that it doesn't have to bottom out just cause it can. We'll see about that one! LOL (I's not funny, it's serious stuff but even if it is no laughing matter, it is no matter if I laugh).

The St. Alban's meeting was very good tonight...step 9. I heard a lot of good things. There was such a positive energy in the room. I'm looking forward to the morning meetings (Monday and Wednesday at 9 AM over at the club). I do so like to start the day out right. That'll do it for me!

Well, that's all the news that isn't news which is why you are reading it here instead of in the Hartford Courant. LMSAO

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Just another day in paradise....


I had a very good day...nothing too exciting or too stressful...just another ordinary day in the ordinary life of an ordinary person. That's nice!

I made it to the hospital meeting this morning. That is such a good meeting...heard lots of good to see lots of friends. It's a lovely way to begin the day, fer sure.

I had time to come home and regroup before Linda's 60th birthday party this afternoon. It was a lovely time. The club was abuzz with lots of well-wishers. We laughed, we talked, we caught up on each others lives. I had a chance to visit with some folks I hadn't seen in quite a while. I took lots of pictures which I am posting discretely on Facebook. This is turning into quite the lengthy process. The tab system on my Firefox browser sure comes in handy at a time like this. I can peruse the internet while I upload pictures on another tab. Whew! It would be way too boring to have to just wait for the process to do its thing!

I do want to get all the photos uploaded tonight. That will preclude the possibility that I forget to finish. This damn muddle age thang really messes with my memory sometimes. LOL

Tommy and I had a really good conversation today. He is turning into such a fine young man. It's always a joy to have a chance to talk to him and tune into what is on his mind. I am constantly amazed about the breadth and depth of his interests and by the mature perspectives of one so young.

I reminded him of the day, a few years ago now, when we were in church at St. Philip's and his 8 or 9 year old self said, "keep coming" after the Lord's Prayer...during Sunday mass. It's one of those 'special' moments that I remember and hold dear. There were a bunch of us 'program' people there who burst out laughing while the rest of the congregation was just flat out bewildered by our laughter. Maybe you had to be there to 'get it.' Maybe you have to be 'one of us' to enjoy it. For us it was a bonding experience.

Well, I only have two more photos to upload after this batch gets posted. YAY! 'Bout time!! I guess I overestimate the technology. I expect that I should be able to upload pictures quick, fast and in a hurry. NOT SO! All things take time...Things I Must Endure. Ah yes, that magic word that keeps coming at me from all angles.

Well, speaking of is about time for me to hit the hay. I am so ready to lay my head down and let slumber carry me away to dreamland. Tonight it will be a delight for my head to hit the pillow....IF I CAN EVER FINISH UPLOADING THESE FOOLS PICTURES. Soon, very, very soon...they will all be posted very soon.

Good night to all!

Friday, March 13, 2009

Fear, doubt and insecurity....

Fear, doubt and insecurity are a part of my make up. I engage in them as naturally, as instinctively as breathing. Maybe that is why they are such fundamental parts of my essence. While I can change a thought, instincts come from that which precedes thought, from the genetic programming that insures survival of the species.

I was thinking about that tonight. It doesn't take much to get me thinking. REALLY! Not much at all.

I was wondering, what does a bird a think the first time it falls from the nest? Does it know that it should be able to fly? Does it know that one day it will be able to glide through air as if it were the wind itself?

FAITH. What exactly does that word mean? To the birds of the air? To me? To human beings in general?

I've heard that faith is the absence of fear. Yet that thought does not quite ring true. When I face my fears utilizing my faith, then and only then do I possess the courage to conquer those fears. I heard once in an old war movie that courage was not the absence of fear but rather that it is what one does in the facing their fears.

Do birds fear flying? Do young birds doubt that they can fly? Do they have faith in their potential to soar above the solid earth?

The human mind is a terrible thing to waste...or is it? Do I let myself get in the way of me too often? Do I let myself get in the way of life too often? Note to self: stop second guessing yourself so much. LOL

If I let go and let god (group of drunks, good orderly direction*, your standard concept of an higher power, dog spelled backwards)I am walking on water in a spiritual sense. What a concept! I too can soar if I allow myself the freedom, if I remove the bondage of self. Hmmm!

*my personal favorite folks!

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Busy is good!

It's been a whirlwind couple of days. Yesterday was a blur. By the time I got the car yesterday I had barely enough time to skip down to Plainfield for the digital box and then scoot over to Pomfret for the 12:30 meeting. I gabbed a bit afterward and then I was off to the Post Office and then to the laundry mat to put my clothes in the washers. the police station to get my license in order and to the community cneter to join the gym. Of course, by then I had to go back and put my laundry in the dryer while I trekked down to Stop & Shop and Lowe's. I got back in time to grab my laundry and be a bit late returning the car. I got home, grabbed a protein bar and walked over to Broad Street and came home after the meeting to cook a bit of something substantial. Whew!

And today was just as hectic. I worked around the house, doing some chores. The lock I bought at Lowe's is causing me problems so I compromised and placed it on the inside door then called the landlord to let him know I was perfectly happy with it where it was but the outside door situation had not changed though it isn't really an's a damn double door scenario, hey.

I walked downtown to the post office to mail some things (my mailbox is not up yet) and then hit the town hall so I could register to vote in Killingly. After that I stopped at the library to trade in my Woodstock card for a Killingly one. Details! Details! Details!

The kicker is, I will keep thinking of things that I have to do to be an official Killingly resident over the next few weeks. Hey! At least I get around to these things eventually. It's hard trying to figure out what all I have to do. Jeepers! You'd think since I went through this just this past July it would all be in the forefront of my muddle aged mind. RIGHT! Like that is some kind of option.

OHMIGAWD! That reminds me...I had the hot flash from hell during the meeting last night. It occurs to me that there are only so many layers one can take off in a public place without creating a scene. I was really tempted to test the limits of that thar boundary. I damn near spontaneously combusted right there in the church basement. I am so grateful that doesn't happen too often.

I suspect that's why menopause has a reputation for being hell. It's about the sudden rising of one's body temperature without warning. I felt possessed of hell for a time last night. If this keeps up I am going to have to invest in flame retardant clothing and asbestos underwear!

Well, it is early to rise tomorrow. I am meeting Anne for breakfast then we will stop by Sue's (not me silly, the other Sue..duh) to pick up a couple of plastic bins I need to get out of her way. Later I will be going to Hartford with the Institute for Living. She's got an appointment down there.

Saturday is the Corned Beef dinner at the club. Mary Lou is gonna scoot into town to grab me for house sitting and we will stop by there on our way to Willi. Sunday is an Ashley kinda day. Monday is Stew and Story at church (I'm one of the cooks) and then Wednesday I head to New Haven myself.

I have a couple of options for Tuesday night...speaking in Waterford or a toy party. Hmm...wonder what Sue will end up doing. Details to follow. I get back into town on Wednesday night.

Having said all that...if I don't post here for a few days...DEAL WITH IT! I have a life for Pete's sake. LMAO

Busy is good!

Monday, March 2, 2009


The snow has stopped falling for now. There's a pristine blanket of snow hugging the earth, wrapping it in a sense of fresh and calm and clean. All the noise in the world couldn't detract from the quiet acceptance of what is unchangeable...the weather, the past, life on life's terms. Winter reminds me that what is, just is. I find peace in that thought.

It's not about how I got here. That's the past. What matters is the answer to this, "Where do I go from here? Where do I WANT to go from here?"


Well, it is the little things in life. I want to get a hair cut. My bangs are driving me nuts again. Hair is so annoying...and baffling. Do I get it cut short like I usually do so I don't have to mess with it for a long time? Do I just get a trim? I like the way it looks mostly. It's just those damn bangs getting in my eyes.

Of course, getting it cut today is just setting myself up. We are supposed to be doing the 'soup and story' thing at church. There's this gal there who always comments on my hair cuts. She starts out pleasant enough, saying it looks good....EXCEPT MY BANGS AREN'T EVEN! EVERY TIME! Well, I am in a feisty mood, so I may just enjoy bantering with her. There's a character defect or shortcoming in that. LMAO

Forgiving her would be the high road.

I'm still learning about forgiveness though. I learn a little more with each lesson. I was thinking about the connotation of 'good.' There'd be no good if there was no bad to measure it against. It's kind of a tally sheet for life when I look at it that way, but life isn't so much a tally sheet. Life is a journey, a process, one hell of a ride sometimes.

I think about that old ARMY commercial, where they want to make you "all that you can be." Hmm...there's a lot of that 'all' in me that aint so good. STUMBLING BLOCKS. But, if I turn that into trying to be the best that I can be I can find the path again. STEPPING STONES.

Yes, indeed, where do I go from here? CHOICES! I can make good ones or bad ones. There's that dichotomy again. Hmm...

DIRECTION! I like that concept. It works with my journey analogy. Life isn't about standing still. Sobriety isn't about standing still. If I'm not walking away from a drink or a drug, then I am most certainly walking toward my next one.



I can start in a direction and then choose another. Nothing is carved in stone. I won't always make the best decisions but that doesn't mean that I can't make other/better/different decisions later.

I am right where I am supposed to be, but I am not where I am supposed to stay. Everything that I have done up until this moment has gotten me here. For that, I am grateful. I like where I am at today. I like who I am today. My past is the bridge that brought me to this new land of hope and opportunity. It is up to me from here on out...