I’M A WARRIOR 

I love this picture and quote. It depicts strength and resilience. 

For a long time I couldn’t figure out what to do withwith myself. I was hell bent on a path that was leading nowhere quick. I thought that I couldn’t do any better. I thought that I was a lost cause. Somewhere deep down inside of me I knew better, but my mind was so far gone that I couldn’t escape the grips of my addiction. 

I’ve been many places and tried many things in my journey. Addiction took me through various levels of hell only to find that what seemed like my bottom wasn’t. There was a trap door in the floor that allowed me to sink deeper. Still I knew there was a better way. I just had to find it. I invisioned it many times in many states of utter desperation. But my twisted thinking led me to believe that I could never obtain it. 

I’ve been fighting since I was a child. 

The Struggle Is Real. Trust me when I tell you. Drugs was my escape from a mind that just wouldn’t shut off. The never ending succession of insanely negative thoughts and feelings just became too much for my young mind to decipher so I settled on believing what I was being told. 

The devil 👿 tried to make me do it. But he failed time and time again. My Higher Power’s will for me was stronger than my own destructive will for myself. Although I was fooled by those devilish thoughts for what seemed like an eternity, I was eventually led to the road to freedom. A freedom that came at a cost. A high price to pay to live so low. 

I’m not a survivor, I’m a fuckin warrior. 

People look at me and judge me because of my past. My background reads like a violent, crime and drug fueled action movie. They haven’t a clue what it takes to survive that, be able to walk away from it and share it with others. They haven’t got a clue and never will because they refuse to admit that it takes a lot more courage, guts and resilience then they will ever have. It’s easy to kick a man when he’s down and try to keep him down. But what about when he gets back up? Now you want to change your tune and pretend that you always knew I could do it. Whatever. It’s all good. I don’t need your fake ass support and damn sure don’t need your approval. 

People fear what they do not understand. So I say to you. Educate yourself, get involved, show support and encouragement. Don’t condemn and belittle people who are struggling. We do enough of that ourselves. We are not weak, we are warriors. Believe that. 

Peace and blessings. 

Eric Ease 

BREAKING FREE FROM MY MENTAL PRISON

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For many years, I held on tightly to the role of victim. I truly believed that everyone had it out for me and contributed to my failures. It was always someone else’s fault. It was a conspiracy, a set up or something or another. I wasn’t able to get honest with myself and take responsibility for my actions. I blamed my environment, my childhood, my parents, neighbors and even strangers.

Pointing ☝ the finger at anyone and everyone else was easier than admitting that I was to blame. Denial, justifications and rationalizations became my everyday norm. Little did I know that I was creating a monster, that I was creating a mental block, a fantasy land of lies and self deception. I was placing myself under arrest, locking myself up and throwing away the key. I became a imaginary cartoon character. Unable to fathom that I could possibly do anything wrong.

While I was in this state of deep denial, I used those excuses to commit offenses against the public at large. All the while feeling justified and believing that it was necessary at the time for my survival. Using drugs has a funny way of warping my thoughts and making them seem rational. The truth is now even without the use of drugs, my thoughts 💭 are often warped.

That’s where I am at today. Although I have been clean for 2 yrs, 7 mos and 29 days. My thoughts 💭 at times, are still like that of when I was using. I find myself suffering from delusional thought patterns, paranoid thought patterns and even the useless, hopeless and worthless thought patterns. It’s a struggle some days and others it’s not. More often than not I am in a good space, but I have been dealing with issues of not being grateful lately and I have shared openly with my sponsor and network about it.

I can be my worse enemy. I have a bad habit of being very critical of myself and allowing my past to have me believe that I will never be as good as I know I can be. I self sabotage and isolate myself from the same people that helped save my life. My Higher Power included. I had been feeling like this recently after being denied a job as a result of a background check. I immediately went into the pity potty mode and felt like giving up. The negativity was thick and I was caught up in the grips.

I am grateful that I do not have the urges or desires to hurt myself or others by using anymore. That is the farthest thing from my mind these days. After all, One thing I know for sure is my life is fuckin awesome right now. I will not trade it in for my old using life. No thanks. I will not think myself into trouble. I just had a couple of bad days that’s all. I am back to feeling great and I am back on my grind. Job searching, school work, meetings, family, and overall gratitude for the whole damn thing.

I just wanted to share that no matter what we go through.

This too shall pass.

Peace and blessings

Eric Ease

YOU CAN TRY, BUT YOU WILL NEVER STOP MY FORWARD MOTION

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So yesterday I was feeling disappointed and a little discouraged about something that I am all to familiar with. It’s a well known practice amongst the hiring world, the powers that be. It’s the discriminatory practice of the criminal background check. Now don’t get me wrong. I believe that it’s is needed, there are some nefarious people out there. In some cases it is necessary and definitely warranted. But in other cases. Well there needs to be some kind of guidelines and exceptions.

In my active addiction I racked up quite a few charges and sadly at the time didn’t know how badly it would affect the future me.. I have the misfortune of feeling those affects now. The fact that my records date back to the early 80s and the worst of my offenses happened in 1992. Now for those of us who know, that’s 24 years ago. I am still being prosecuted in a sense and am still serving that sentence.

I wonder if the powers that be even know that it has been that long. Do they bother to read the charges and the years of the convictions. Or do they just automatically render a judgment simply because there is a charge there. I tend to think it’s the latter. I believe that if they would bother to further investigate they would see that I am not that same person. If they took the opportunity to get to know me and evaluate my skills they would be amazed at just what I am capable of.

I have struggled with the issues of my past for years. I often wondered what, if anything I could do about it. Until recently I thought I couldn’t do anything. A few years ago I applied for a certificate of relief from disabilities from the state parole board and received it. Unfortunately it does very little and doesn’t hold much weight. The reason being no one gets to see it. They don’t ask if you have one on applications. They only ask if you have been convicted of a crime. I am currently looking into having my convictions expunged. I am reading up on the process and will be seeking some guidance in that area.

So my dialema is getting past the background check in order to actually get to express who I truly am. I am a survivor, I am no longer able to quit, get frustrated and use behind the feelings. Today I am equipped with a network of people who offer support and suggestions. I am able to take a minute to reevaluate the situation. I have tools to vent my frustrations and get the feedback that I need when I might not be seeing too clearly.

Yesterday’s disappointment
Is today’s determination.

Thank you to everyone who commented and offered suggestions on yesterday’s post. Your Love, Support and Encouragement helped me more than you can ever imagine. I am truly Grateful and Blessed to have such a great support network of friends.

Peace and Blessings

Eric Ease

HOW DO YOU LEAVE THE PAST WHEN THE PAST HAUNTS YOU EVERYWHERE YOU GO

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I’m feeling like fuck it. What’s the use. No matter how many steps forward I take, my past will always come back to haunt me. No matter what I do the wreckage of my past will always be a obstacle.

Im tired of hearing about letting go and leaving in God’s hands 👐. Every time it’s the same shit. I get my hopes up only to have my dreams smashed over some shit that happened decades ago. Tell me how come they can’t just let it go. How come I am still paying dues for things that I did way back when.

It’s hard to stay in a positive frame of mind. It’s hard right now, not to just say fuck it. I give up. I mean after all what’s the use. In the eyes of John Q Public I will always be a criminal and a drug addict. I will never measure up to the standards of society so why bother.
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I am not that person that I used to be, but they will never know that because all they see is what’s on paper. It’s not easy dealing with this life. Discrimination is waiting around every fuckin corner. Waiting patiently until I get a inch above a glimmer of hope. Waiting so it can stomp down and  smash my hope to dust.

Lost dreams awakened only to be shattered like the broken beer bottles of yesterday.

WHAT’S THE DIFFERENCE

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I often ask myself this question. I have been thinking a lot lately about how much my life has changed. But I have also been thinking about how much my life is still the same.

I am grateful that I can share my experiences with the world but even more, I am grateful that I have experiences to share. I know that I am doing things today that I have only dreamed of and my life is amazing right now. I know that I wouldn’t change it for the world.

I am still a work in progress.

I understand that fact, but there’s this underlying feeling that occasionally eats at me. A feeling that is hard to describe in words but it’s a familiar feeling. It’s a feeling similar to that of failure. It’s a  feeling that I know and then again don’t.  I have the unfortunate disease of complication, uncertainty and fear. I have a disease that tells me that I am not enough and what I do is not enough. This disease wants me to believe that I do not deserve the blessings that I have received and it has me waiting for the impending doom that has always been associated with my life.

The thing is

I love the changes that have been happening in my life. The thing also is I am still operating on a one track mind frame. I on one hand welcome change but on the other become closed minded when that change,  changes. When I am set on something I want it to come through, but when the variables change I balk. I become stuck and undecided. I become closed minded and find it difficult at times to snap out of it. That’s one of many of my character defects.

I know that it’s all in my head. It’s the result of years of drug abuse and not growing up and stuffing feelings and experiences that no sane person should ever have to endure. It’s from years of allowing fear to dictate my life. I also know that I have grown and am still growing and will face challenges.

So what’s the difference.

The difference is I am not who I was back then. I have changed. I have grown and will continue to do so. I will never give up, because the life I want is becoming a reality. It’s within grasp and is no longer my wildest dreams. I am not perfect nor do I want to be. I will have ups and I will have downs. I will not allow fear to have me feeling like I am not worthy. I am willing to work past those fears and character defects to get to my next level.

Progress not perfection.

Slow motion is better than no motion.

RISKS AND REWARDS

CHANGE

I am forever grateful for the opportunity to live life and not still be suffering from the ill effects of my addiction. That is not to say that my transition into this new life came without challenges and obstacles. I didn’t just wake up one day and all of a sudden my life was magically transformed into something wonderful. It took time for me to surrender to the the fact that the old negative habits, behaviors and attitudes were killing me. Slowly draining me of every ounce of life. I was on the road to a slow and painful death before I was able to make the decision to ask for help. It was a decision that came in the moment of utter desperation. I cried out to God and asked him to please save me from myself.

The call was answered but that wasn’t the end of it. I didn’t know then what I know now. That it takes hard work and dedication to maintain this new way of life. That the road to recovery isn’t paved with fluffy pillows and marshmallows. I wasn’t as ready as I thought I was. This new way of life forced me to start taking a different kind of risk. It forced me to start challenging myself and to start telling the truth about myself.

Fear my greatest nemesis blocked me yet again from receiving the rewards of a better life. Fear kept me locked and loaded into looking for ways and means to stay stuck right where I was most comfortable. In the pain and misery that I had become accustomed to. Fear of change kept me the same and doing the same things for years and it blocked my blessings in the beginning of my recovery and still pokes it’s ugly head in to check up on me daily.

I am suffering from the symptoms of fear right now. I am about to embark on a new journey. I have a interview this week and I haven’t been on a interview in almost 10 years.The last time I interviewed wasn’t pretty either. Lol I know I was a wreck and I know they knew it too. This time I don’t have addiction to worry about. I am clean and facing life’s challenges a day at a time. I feel all kinds of feelings whenever I think about this interview. My head is spinning from it all. I think that I am thinking about it too much. I do not want to psych myself out. I have prayed on it and I am trying to leave it in my higher powers hands. I keep taking it back though.

RISK

My life has turned around and it keeps getting better and better daily. Sometimes I can’t believe that this is my life. I am amazed at how far I have come in such a short time. There are times that fear would try to have me believe that I do not deserve this life. After all I am just a crack head right. That’s what my addiction still wants me to believe about myself. The fear of success, of progress, of growing and evolving has a way of breaking me down. Bringing me back to that scared little boy of  yesteryear. I will continue to fight past my fears. I have been doing a great job at facing my fears and I will continue to practice what has been working.

I know that the fear is all in my head. I will push pass this and continue on my road to success and happiness. I just needed to blow of some steam and share this with you all.

Thank you for listening.

Peace and blessings

Eric Ease

 

MISSING MY FATHER

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On this day back in 1937 my father was born. In August of 2001 my father had his home coming.

I remember my Father as a strick, hard working man. He made sure his boys knew the basics. As I got older and my addiction settled in my Father became my enabler of sorts. No matter how hard he fought he always came through. He tried his best to keep me from going to prison again and again. He tried his best to help me see the error of my ways. I was too caught up in the grips and ignored his every warning.

Before my Father passed away he was able to see me living a semi better life. He had seen me at my worse and he seen my struggling to try to get clean. Unfortunately he never got to see me clean. He never got to see his son get past his demons.

I never got to express to my Father how much I appreciate everything he had done for me and how much I love him. I never really had the opportunity to properly grieve his death and am still heartbroken. I still come to tears when I think about him and am crying now as I write this.

I miss my Father. He was my friend. I am feeling sad, depressed, angry and frustrated. I am going through it. I will get through it. I know he is smiling down on me and proud of where I am at today.

Happy birthday Pops

Peace and blessings

Eric Ease

THE NEXT CHAPTER BEGINS

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I am grateful for the opportunity to continue learning. To advance and further my education. Recovery has afforded me many things, but the most important thing I am getting out of this journey is finding out who I am and  what I like.

Fear has kept me from exploring new things. Fear of failure as well as fear of success. Fear of change and fear of leaving my old familiar pain. Yes that was a fear of mines. I actually had gotten so used to my familiar pain that I was afraid I wouldn’t be able to make it without it. Crazy as it might sound it’s true and that’s my distorted addicts thinking.

For a long time I couldn’t figure out what I wanted to do. Where or what I wanted to be. I was at a loss because I never thought about it. I never thought I would ever get out of the drug induced life that I lived for so many years. So thinking about a future seemed to be a waste of time. I was wrong and I thank God for helping me to see that I am worthy of so much more.

Being a recovering addict who is working my program to the best of my ability. I am finding new pathways, exploring new avenues and blazing new trailways. I am open to new and exciting  adventures and am living a life beyond anything I ever imagined possible. Recovery and spirituality have changed my life. Lost dreams have been awakened and new possibilities are arising.

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I am looking forward to the next exciting chapter in many chapters of my new life. I am about to embark on a journey that has brought me pleasure as a child and has been sparked again as an adult. Photography. 📸 I love taking pictures and I have enrolled in a course which will teach me the fundamentals and the advanced techniques. I am excited, exhilarated, scared, nervous and anxious all at the same time.

😁 Overall I’m happy about the whole damn thing. I would not trade the way I feel for nothing in the world.

Peace and blessings

Eric Ease

I’VE GOT TO BELIEVE

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I heard it said many times that if I think I can or cannot I am right. I could never quite figure out what that meant until recently. I didn’t understand the power that lies with my thoughts. That if I think negatively about something it will eventually have a negative outcome. If I think positively I will have a positive result. My circumstances are determined by my own energy and my attitude towards any given situation.

For what seems like a thousand years I have had a negative outlook on life. As  a child I can remember not liking myself and wishing my life was better,  wishing I was this or that. I defeated my own purpose then and as I grew older I  started experimenting with substances. My circumstances only got worse and  my life spiraled out of control because I truly believed that I  could not do anything about it. I wallowed in self pity and blamed everyone for what I thought to be my misfortune.  Taking no responsibility for my actions because I didn’t know how.

Coming into recovery all these years later it is difficult to undo all the damage that I have caused myself. My fractured thinking still at times will have me believe that I am not worthy and that things are going to end badly soon. I have come a long way since October 2013 but the truth is I have only begun to scratch the surface. I have a long road ahead of me I know. The main difference today is I am learning not to see my glass as half empty. I try to see the big picture and not self defeat. I fall short on many occasions believe me. That’s why I am grateful that I have people in my life. Those closest to me help me to recognize when I am blocking my own blessings and she helps me to see through my own mess. 

I can admit today that I need help and that I cannot always see past the obstacle that is me. But I believe that I will and that’s why I continue to do the work.

Peace and blessings

Eric Ease

PROUD OF WHO I AM

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For a long time I was ashamed and embarrassed about my life. I was brainwashed into thinking that I wasn’t worthy or even capable of living life that I saw others enjoying. To top it off I was made to feel less than by others. Listening to the name calling and opinions of people brought my self esteem even lower than it already was. I felt less than because I suffered from an addiction. A disease that I could not control nor understand. I allowed other people’s opinions of me dictate my life and as a result I sunk deeper into isolation and became a prisoner of my own mind.

The truth is. No one has the right to put another person down or to make anyone feel less than or unworthy. It says more about them than it does about me. But being that I already felt that way about myself I was easily swayed into believing it to be true. My fractured mind could not figure out why I was the way I was. It only allowed me to agree with the assessment of others. For years I lived in a state of depression, fear, agony, pain and misery. Never venturing out past my little self made prison. I was hopeless and wanted to end the miserable existence that was my life.

Thankfully God saw fit to save me from myself. I am in a life saving process of recovery. Not just from drugs but also from all the lies I believed, from all the harsh words from others, from all the desperation, degradation and despair. I am recovering from the harm that I not only caused myself but the harm that I caused others too.

I am proud of who I am becoming and NO One can take that away from me. Nothing anyone can say to me today will ever make me feel like I am less than or not worthy.

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