Serenity Practice: Freedom from fear... Program Principle: Giving up fear offers us an opportunity to live free. "Ultimately we know deeply that the other side of every fear is freedom." Marilyn Ferguson, Contemporary writer, author of The Aquarian Conspiracy
He's been talking about doing it for a couple months and I've been supportive and non-threatening. He keeps asking how I did it and it reminds me of just how long it took for me to feel and enjoy being sober. As always, I've offered to go to a meeting with him if he wants. He says he doesn't want to get off work and instead of going home and drinking he'd have to go to a meeting. That's not how he wants to end his day. I just keep my mouth shut. I remember all the times that Norris just didn't say anything (I'm sure he could of) when I would talk about my fears and anger. I'm trying to help him but I won't expect anything from him. It's easy for me to remember all those times I went back out and drank. I'll be there for him...that's all I can do. Gotta get to work!
Yesterday, after I got home from work, I took a nap. I know I was dreaming but I'm not sure about what. The doorbell rang once, then twice and I woke up and jumped out of bed and put on my pants and opened the door and there was Tim. Tim is one of "those guys" that I used to trick with back when I was drinking and doing drugs. I just now realized that it was over 2 years ago and yet they keep coming back! Was I that good in bed or is it more about how easy it was to get me to buy more drugs and let my stuff be stolen? I don't know how I did it! How could I spend almost every penny I had and still make it till the next paycheck? Anyway, Tim has a great body and he seems to be a pretty nice guy, for a hustler. He said, "Hi Larry. How are you?" I said, "Fine." He said, "Can I come in for a drink of water?" And then standing on my doorstep, I looked at him, then back in my apartment at my computer, TV etc. and then told him, "No, I can't let you in. I'm sorry." Then he went away. I WON'T GO BACK TO THE WAY I WAS!!! I put too damn much work into getting sober to give it all away for some guy who doesn't care about anybody or anything except getting high. It's hard for me to believe that after two years those guys are still out there doing the same old thing. Thankfully, I'm not.
He mentioned something about the Mexican kids protesting and how appropriate it was that they were getting punished for skipping school. I was surprised he said this as I know he's marched in Washington protesting the war in Vietnam back in the 60's. I reminded him about that and asked if he didn't skip school to protest here in Houston like I did in Pennsylvania. I only skipped school once to do that cause I was a good boy. After I graduated I marched in several protests in Butler and Pittsburgh. He smiled sheepishly and admitted he had done the same. Sometimes it's hard to remember that the kids today aren't that much different than we were back then.
I went to an art festival this weekend with my foster Mom and Sister. All three of us smoke. Foster Mom smokes like a chimney, lights one right off of another. Lucky for her, her hearing aids don't seem to pick up the comments people make when they smell the smoke. We were there for about 4 hours and in that time I smoked the same cigarette the whole time. A few puffs here a few puffs there. I was embarrassed. I told sis that I almost never smoke in public anymore. Then I lit up after lunch, in the picnic area and watched the woman beside us lift her nose in the air and sniff and sniff and then her head swiveled left and right as she tried to pinpoint where the cigarette smell was coming from. Then she said loudly, "I smell cigarette smoke! Let's move the kids." I put it out. I'll bet she drives a big SUV with dual exhausts that's polluting the atmosphere and doesn't think she's doing anything bad. I'm so mean.
And for some reason this kind of reminds me of the same thing.
Thought for the Day: "We don't see things as they are.We see things as we are." Anais NinThe Daffodil PrincipleSeveral times my daughter had telephoned to say, "Mother, you must come seethe daffodils before they are over,"I wanted to go, but it was a two-hour drive from Laguna to Lake Arrowhead."I will come next Tuesday,"I promised, a little reluctantly, on her third call.Next Tuesday dawned cold and rainy. Still, I had promised, and so I drovethere. When I finally walked into Carolyn's house and hugged and greeted mygrandchildren, I said, "Forget the daffodils, Carolyn!The road is invisible in the clouds and fog, and there is nothing in theworld except you and these children that I want to see bad enough to driveanother inch"My daughter smiled calmly and said, "We drive in this all the time, Mother.""Well, you won't get me back on the road until it clears, and then I'mheading for home!" I assured her."I was hoping you'd take me over to the garage to pick up my car.""How far will we have to drive?""Just a few blocks," Carolyn said. "I'll drive. I'm used to this."After several minutes, I had to ask, "Where are we going? "This isn't theway to the garage!""We're going to my garage the long way," Carolyn smiled, "by way of thedaffodils.""Carolyn," I said sternly, "please turn around.""It's all right, Mother, I promise. You will never forgive yourself if youmiss this experience."After about twenty minutes, we turned onto a small gravel road and I saw asmall church. On the far side of the church, I saw a hand-lettered sign thatread, "Daffodil Garden." We got out of the car and each took a child's hand,and I followed Carolyn down the path.Then, we turned a corner of the path, and I looked up and gasped. Before melay the most glorious sight. It looked as though someone had taken a greatvat of gold and poured it down over the mountain peak and slopes.The flowers were planted in majestic, swirling patterns-great ribbons andswaths of deep orange, white, lemon yellow, salmon pink, saffron, and butteryellow. Each different-colored variety was planted as a group so that itswirled and flowed like its own river with its own unique hue. There werefive acres of flowers."But who has done this?" I asked Carolyn."It's just one woman," Carolyn answered. "She lives on the property. That'sher home."Carolyn pointed to a well kept A frame house that looked small and modest inthe midst of all that glory.We walked up to the house. On the patio, we saw a poster. "Answers to theQuestions I Know You Are Asking" was the headline.The first answer was a simple one. 50,000 bulbs," it read.The second answer was, "One at a time, by one woman.Two hands, two feet, and very little brain."The third answer was, "Began in 1958."There it was, The Daffodil Principle. For me, that moment was alife-changing experience.I thought of this woman whom I had never met, who, more than forty yearsbefore, had begun-one bulb at a time-to bring her vision of beauty and joyto an obscure mountain top. Still, just planting one bulb at a time, yearafter year, had changed the world. This unknown woman had forever changedthe world in which she lived. She had created something of ineffableindescribable) magnificence, beauty, and inspiration.The principle her daffodil garden taught is one of the greatest principlesof celebration. That is, learning to move toward our goals and desires onestep at a time-often just one baby-step at a time - and learning to love thedoing, learning to use the accumulation of time. When we multiply tinypieces of time with small increments of daily effort, we too will find wecan accomplish magnificent things. We can change the world."It makes me sad in a way," I admitted to Carolyn."What might I have accomplished if I had thought of a wonderful goalthirty-five or forty years ago and had worked away at it 'one bulb at atime' through all those years. Just think what I might have been able toachieve!"My daughter summed up the message of the day in her usual direct way. "Starttoday," she said.It's so pointless to think of the lost hours of yesterdays. The way to makelearning a lesson of celebration instead of a cause for regret is to onlyask, "How can I put this to use today?". . . . .(One person at a time!)Author Unknown
Program Principle: Our very first challenge is to accept our present circumstances as they are, ourselves as we are, and other people as they are.
"Anything in life that we don't accept will simply make trouble for us until we make peace with it." Shakti Gawain, Contemporary American teacher
I try for acceptance in everything I do. It's not always easy. I'm pretty easy going as far as other people are concerned. I'm pretty good with the circumstances of life but I do seem to have trouble with accepting myself as I am. There's always room for improvement. I'm my own worst critic. I'll keep working on it.
and asked him when we were going to get some furniture in our reception area. He said he guessed he'd have to get his wife to go to Ikea. I said don't send her, send me. He said OK. He gave me no idea how much he wanted to spend or what kind or color of furniture to get. So I went scouting today and found one couch I really liked for a reasonable price which of course, wasn't in stock. Pick #2 was nice enough and the price was pretty inexpensive and it was comfortable. It's called brown but it's very close to plum and I think it will go nicely in our area. So, back to Ikea with the boss's credit card and the couch and chair will be delivered tomorrow. I decided to wait for the extras, like rug, lamp, end table and maybe coffee table until we see what kind of room is left. He agreed. So then he comes to my office and says he knows he didn't hire me to be the decorator and I said, Hey, I'm gay. I'm supposed to like this kind of stuff. He chuckled and then told me what he wants for the conference room. I said sure, I'll look. Hey it gets me out of the office a bit and I do like to shop while spending someone else's money. A perfect world!
So tomorrow morning I'm putting it on and I'm really really going to try and quit. I've been noticing for some time now that I'm extremely short of breath. Since I've had pneumonia and bronchitis so many times it just makes sense to go ahead and quit. Please remind me I said all this in about a month. Wish me luck.
I haven't been to a meeting in quite a while. I'm not really feeling guilty. I've just been busy but I always knew that if I needed one there were many available even though I never go anywhere but Lambda. It's a nice feeling to know there's always one available. My job finally moved. We moved last weekend, actually, they moved. I was sick. I did get to go today and worked for about 5 hours. Becky (one of the girls I work with) and I decided to go exploring and see what the building had to offer and where the smoking areas are. We noticed there were a couple restaurants in the building too. Well, one snack bar and one club of some kind that evidently served food and had a great smoking area with little tables under the eves surrounded by trees. I decided to check out the club and found out the name was The Post Oak Club. Sound familiar? Yep, it's THE Post Oak Club. The AA club. The one I've heard so much about for the last two years. The one I've never been to. Someone is hinting that I should go to a meeting. Guess I'll check it out.