TIME FOR SOME ACTION

43 DAYS CLEAN

Just for today: I will look for opportunities to be of service in everything I do.
Working with others is only the beginning of service work.

Basic Text, p. 59

As I think about yesterdays Just For Today about not just saying it but doing it. Putting words into action it makes me think of how it applies to todays Just for Today.

I have done nothing but take, take, take for the majority of my life. (due to my addiction) Now that I am not using I feel empty. I feel lost, at times I’m like twidiling my thumbs. I need to find something to make me feel useful and what better way than to be of service to others. I know its time to start giving back.

Today being the last day of the year there is no better time than the start of a new year to start giving back. The other day I posted Resolutions well I am going to add one more to that list. I am going to start giving back. It all starts with being Secretary on Wednesdays at my home group. I feel the need to do this and so it shall be done. I look forward to being a part of the solution, instead of the problem.
Thank you for reading today’s blog post.

As always feel free to comment below, join my blog or sign up for email notifications.

Peace and Blessings.

NAM

     

RESOLUTIONS

 41 DAYS CLEAN

 Just for Today:
I seek to see myself as I truly am. I will listen to what others say about me, and see myself through their eyes.
When someone points out a shortcoming, our first reaction may be defensive….[But] if we truly want to be free, we will take a good look at input from fellow addicts.” Basic Text, p.36

Hello and God Bless You.

I hope everyone has had a wonderful Christmas and Santa stuffed your stockings with everything that you asked for. As for me I spent my Christmas contemplating the New Year ahead and what changes I would like to incorporate into my life in 2012. I have sometime to think about this and there are a few things that I would definitely like to change next year. Here is a short list of short term goals for the New Year

1. QUIT SMOKING CIGARETTES
2. EAT AND LIVE A HEALTHIER LIFESTYLE
3. APPLY FOR NEW EMPLOYMENT

 CIGARETTES

This is a list of short term goals to start working on. There are plenty of changes I would like to make but one thing I know about me from past experience is that I take on too many projects and before you know it I quit all of them. So going in with this knowledge I decided to try a different approach. I am going to start off small first and foremost is my health. I have been smoking cigarettes for as long as I have been using and it is time to drop this nasty disgusting habit. I have quit before so I know I can do it. I started back smoking after hanging out one night at a bar with friends drinking and before I knew it I was lighting up a cig..SMH Relapsed just like that. LOL. Anyway its way overdue so I am preparing myself mentally to quit. I have set my date for my birthday Jan 20, 2012 but I plan of quitting before that date.


HEALTHY LIFESTYLE

This one is going to be a bit more difficult because for one thing I love junk food. I eat out everyday. I have a standing reservation at any Mcdonald’s, Burger King, Wendy’s, pizza shop, burger joint, greasy spoon. Thats all I know because the addict in me always takes the easy way out. I don’t do much cooking because they cook it for me..SMH Terrible ain’t it. I am going to have to do some studying on this subject, I can honestly admit that I know nothing about eating healthy other than it is time for me to start. I am not getting any younger and health issues from high blood pressure to diabetes runs in my family. I will make an appointment to see a doctor and get some facts and help on this. Plus I am open to suggestions from you guys too. I definitely need help on eating healthy.

I am also going to start working out again. I know that once I stop smoking weight gain is going to come along so I am going to have to stay in shape. On this subject I do not need any assistance because I used to go to the gym faithfully 3 times a week and I occasionally do push ups, pull ups, sit ups  and curls and things with the fellas at work. Yes we get it in…But I am learning to be open so I will take suggestions on exercise too..After all I am learning that I do not know everything like I once thought I did..

EMPLOYMENT

Yes I am in need of a new job. Please do not get me wrong, I am grateful to be working but I have potential and this job that I have now first doesn’t pay much, I do not use any of the skills that I have to complete my job, it is not something that I am looking to retire from. I am not satisfied where I am. I feel I would be better off somewhere that I can utilize my skill set and feel some kind of accomplishment at the end of the day. Until that happens I will continue to do my job to the best of my ability but in the meantime in between time and will be searching for the upgrade.

In the year 2012 I plan on turning over a new leaf. People, places and things that are not helping me to reach my potential and further myself are going to be eliminated from my life. As I have heard so many times there are certain people who are meant to be in your life and then there those that are only there for a season. (something like that) but you get what I am trying to say. I cannot afford to keep being around people who are not helping me to reach my goals and move forward. I have had enough of being held back. Time to turn the page on that chapter of my life.

Thank you for reading today’s blog post.

As always feel free to comment below, join my blog or sign up for email notifications.

Peace and Blessings.

NAM

PURPOSE

40 DAYS CLEAN

Just for today: I accept that my feelings of depression wont last forever. I will talk openly about my feelings with my sponsor or another person who understands.
We are no longer fighting fear, anger, guilt, self-pity, or depression.

Basic Text, p. 27

Hello and God Bless You.

Today I ask myself what is my purpose in life. Honestly I couldn’t even answer that question. I know what my purpose used to be. In the past my only purpose was to survive and use day to day. Today using is not in the equation but I am struggling to find my true purpose. There is a lot of confusion when I think about this because I never actually cared about it. Now that I have a little clean time I wonder about things. All sorts of things. Sometimes my mind wanders over so many things its like the noise of a using mind. I wonder about being able to stay clean, will things get better, what will my life be like now that I am not using? That’s just a few of the thoughts that circulate in my mind. It’s times like these that make it difficult to focus on what I really want out of life. I try to remember to stay in the here and now, take life 1 day at a time, but it can be difficult. I share this at meetings and I am going to talk with my sponsor about it today.  I do not want to overwhelm myself with these thoughts and then work up a imaginary fear knowing that fear is a dream killer. I think my addiction is once again trying to reek havoc and cause me to doubt myself so I will give up. I will not fall for that again.

So back to purpose. For now I will just say my purpose is to stay clean. I think that I shouldn’t be worrying about my purpose to much right now afterall I am only 40 days clean. I still have a long time ahead of me to figure out what my purpose in life will be. As a addict I always feel like I am not making progress and that starts a negative process which will eventually lead to relapse. So I am telling myself right now that I am making progress, and I am fulfilling my purpose in life just for today. Of course I have fear of failure and I still get depressed thinking about it but I am learning myself and how to push those negative thoughts out and push positive thoughts in.

Today I will not worry about my purpose in life and I will not fear failure. I am doing the best I can and that makes me a winner. God will help me find my purpose when the time is right so I will leave it up to God.

Thank you for reading today’s blog post.

As always feel free to comment below, join my blog or sign up for email notifications.

Peace and Blessings.

NAM

HAPPY KWANZAA

Kwanzaa is a week-long holiday honoring African culture and traditions. It falls between December 26 and January 1 each year. Maulana Karenga, an African-American leader, proposed this observance and it was first celebrated between December 1966 and January 1967.

A candle stick holding seven candles is symbolic of Kwanzaa in the United States.

What do people do?

Kwanzaa is a holiday honoring the culture and traditions of people of African origin. It is celebrated by people from a range of African countries and their descendants. Kwanzaa consists of a week of celebrations, which ends with a feast and the exchange of gifts. During the celebrations, candles are lit and libations are poured. A libation is the name given to a ritual pouring of a drink as an offering to a god. During Kwanzaa, a wooden unity cup is used to pour the libations.
A Kwanzaa ceremony often also includes performance of music and drumming, a reflection on the Pan-African colors of red, green and black and a discussion of some aspect of African history. Women often wear brightly colored traditional clothing. Some cultural organizations hold special exhibitions of African influenced art or performances during the period of the celebrations.
Originally the people observing Kwanzaa did not mix any elements of other festivals into their celebrations. However, in recent years, it has become increasingly common for people to mix elements of Kwanzaa with Christmas or New Year celebrations. For instance, a family may have both a Christmas tree and a Kwanzaa candle stick on display in their home. This enables them to include both Christian and African inspired traditions in their lives at this time of year.

Public life

Apart from New Year’s Day (January 1), the days on which Kwanzaa falls are not public holidays. It is largely a private celebration observed by individuals, families and local communities. However, it falls between Christmas and New Year’s Day, when some businesses and organizations may be closed or run fewer services. If you need to do business with a company or organization with an African-American orientation during this period, it may be wise to check whether they are open as usual.

Symbols

The main symbols of Kwanzaa are a mat, on which to put the things needed for the celebration, the unity cup used to pour libations, a candle stick holding seven candles, the seven candles, ears of corn, the Kwanzaa flag and a poster depicting the seven principles of Kwanzaa. The seven principles of Kwanzaa are: unity; self-determination; collective work and responsibility; co-operative economics; purpose; creativity; and earth.
The colors of Kwanzaa are red, black and green. The Kwanzaa flag consists of three blocks, one in each of these colors. Three of the seven candles are red, three are green and one is black. Each candle represents one of the principles of Kwanzaa. The candle holder is carved from a single piece of wood and its shape was inspired by the form of the Ashanti royal throne.

Background

Kwanzaa was first celebrated in December 1966 and January 1967. The holiday was proposed by Maulana Karenga to give those of African descent a holiday to celebrate their own cultural heritage and the key values of family and community.  Although seen as an alternative to Christmas and thus possibly anti-Christian in the early years, many people now observe aspects of both festivals.
In 1997 and 2004, the United States Postal Service honored Kwanzaa by issuing stamps depicting an aspect of the festival. In 1997, the stamp was designed by Synthia Saint James and showed an African-American family observing the celebrations. In 2004, the stamp was designed by Daniel Minter and shows seven figures representing the seven principles of Kwanzaa. Kwanzaa gained popularity quite quickly. It is now estimated that about 13 percent of African-Americans (nearly five million people) celebrate the festival in some way.

TRUSTING GOD

38 DAYS CLEAN

Just for today: I will place my trust in a Power greater than myself, for only that Power will never let me down. As we learn to trust this Power, we begin to overcome our fear of life. Basic Text, p. 25

Hello and God Bless you.

As we come to the end of yet another year, there is one thing that is different with this one. The difference is that this end of year I am clean. It has been a very very long time since I have not had a drink or a drug for the holidays. That’s not to say that I didn’t want to have a few drinks and lots of drugs but I didn’t use and I am grateful for that. I have just recently renewed my belief in a power greater than myself. To be more specific I have a belief in God. I remember when I was younger I never had much belief in God, and I hated going to church and Sunday school. As time went on and my problems multiplied by the thousands I really lost faith. Now that I am clean I believe simply because the life I was living there is no way I remained alive on my own. There had to be some kind of divine intervention. With that knowledge I have come to believe that someone or something great enough to be able to protect me from myself exist. I have some knowledge of the Bible and read it occasionally but I am not an expert on the word of God. As with all new things it will take some time to get a full understanding but for now I choose to pray and trust in God. Prayer is a lot easier than trust but I am beginning to develop the trust and faith that I need. Now some people might think I am crazy when I say this and that is why I love the rooms so much, because no matter what you say people can relate. Since the noise in my head has been slowly quieting down there are times when I believe I can actually hear God answering some of my thoughts and questions. It doesn’t matter to me whether people believe that or not because I BELIEVE IT!

I thank God for saving my life, for guiding me to the rooms of NA, for helping me find a sponsor with knowledge and patience.I humbly ask him to remove my character defects (of which I have plenty) and to give me knowledge of his will for me, the power and courage to carry it out, for the power to get out of my own way and begin to live the life he has planned for me. It is not easy but it is something that must be done. I will practice this new way of life and try my hardest to be consistent. I know that I tend to waver after a little while that is why I pray for consistency. I pray for the power because I can also at times not put my all into something and do just enough to get by. I don’t want that in my recovery I want to put in 100% so I can stop being the loser, the failure, the worthless piece of you know what that I been feeling like for so long. I also ask God to give me the strength to forgive myself and others and to forget the past or at least to let it go. I have been harboring old feelings for too damn long and I know that it’s been stunting my growth. I feel it is time to move on, to turn the page on this chapter.

So my practice for today is trusting in my Higher Power God.

Thank you for reading today’s blog post.

As always feel free to comment below, join my blog or sign up for email notifications.

Peace and Blessings.

NAM

MERRY CHRISTMAS

37 DAYS CLEAN

Just for today: God, please free me from self-will. Help me understand the principle of anonymity; help me to live selflessly.

Hello and God Bless.

I am grateful to God on this day for my life and everything in it. As I sit here in my living room alone I can’t help but think how things have changed for me this year. Last year at this time I was feeling really lonely and depressed and really didn’t want to live anymore. I was fed up with my life due to my addiction. I wanted all the pain and misery to end but was too much of a coward to commit suicide. Just like with everything else in my life I was looking for the easy way out, but the shortcut that I am so accustomed to would not come.

I remember thinking how I ruined my life and my relationship with my family all for the sake of using. I cried a lot thinking about the loneliness. I know that I had to do something to stop the madness.

Well here I am a year later, I have had my share of pain this year. I have relapsed 3 times and still to this day want to use. Knowing all the pain and misery associated with using I still have the urge to use. I think all the years of using has damaged me beyond repair. Insanity is doing the same thing expecting different results, what about doing the same thing when you know the results. Insanity times ten I guess.

I am struggling with recovery and I don’t really understand why. I mean this seems so simple. No matter what and if you don’t pick up..Simple right. Then why the HELL am I making it so Damn difficult..I know that my thinking is fucked up, I don’t process danger the way I should and that is scary. I will continue to fight the good fight. I will not take the easy way out, I will not be a coward when it comes to my recovery.

Thank you God for your guidance and for giving me the strength to stay clean this Christmas.

BAH HUMBUG

34 DAYS CLEAN

Just for today: I will open my mind to new ideas and learn to live my life in a new way.

I am trying very hard to keep an open mind and try new things but it is hard right now. My addiction is really fucking with me and it has me depressed to the point I wish I could lock myself in a closet. I am scared that i am going to fuck up and use. I have to work tomorrow I am off on Christmas and then back to work on Monday. 3 days next week I will be working overtime. Monday, Thursday and Friday. I am really trying to keep myself busy to keep my mind off of using. I am talking to people and sharing this every chance I get. I hate the holidays right now. I am not used to being clean and I am very uncomfortable right now.

On one hand the addict in me wants to use and on the other it wants these feelings to go away now, not in due time, not this too shall pass. I want this shit to go away NOW. I know that it is not easy to get and stay clean and as usual the addict in me wants the quick solution. Like I wish there was a magic pill or something or I could snap my fingers and be somewhere else..LOL IF ONLY.. I know that’s wishful thinking in fact I know that is not reality but can’t blame a brother for wishing.

I have been working really hard to stay clean, I am happy with the progress that I have made so far. I am seeing a change in me and I like it. But if I didn’t tell on myself and let people know that I also go through feelings of pain and discomfort then I am only hurting myself. I am tired of hurting myself. So I share the good times as well as the bad. I know this feeling shall pass and I am willing to wait it out. I haven’t got time for the pain, misery and suffering that will follow if I pick up..No Matter What.

Thank you for reading today’s blog post.

As always feel free to comment below, join my blog or sign up for email notifications.

Peace and Blessings.

NAM

THE BLUES

33 DAYS CLEAN

Just for today: I have found a new way to live. Today, I will seek to serve others with love and to love myself.

Hello and God Bless.

Well its holiday time once again and although I am clean I am starting to feel a little depressed. The holidays have been a point of misery for me for the past 15+ years mainly because of my addiction.

Honestly speaking I miss using. The holidays were always party time in my house. In the beginning it was fun, as my addiction progressed and I isolated I was missing from the holiday festivities. I made myself so distant from my family that now that I am a little clean I’m feeling lonely. I feel abandoned. Funny thing is I’m the one who abandoned them. I made it my business to stay away from my family because of the embarrassment I felt at being an addict. Although at the time you couldn’t tell me I was an addict, I now know why I stayed away. As a result of my isolation I have become a non-member of my own family. I spent Thanksgiving at a marathon meeting and will probably do the same for Christmas. I am not totally in the BAH HUMBUG mood but I certainly do not feel the Christmas spirit. I hope and pray that after I make it through the holiday that things become better and next Christmas I wont be alone again.

Its really depressing not having anyone to spend the holidays with. Or even worse having someone but not being around them. I will pray to God for strength and courage this holiday season. I know that through God all things are possible. I don’t want to make anyone depressed with my holiday blues so I will keep this short. I will share about it in a meeting later on today.

Thank you for reading today’s blog post.

As always feel free to comment below, join my blog or sign up for email notifications.

Peace and Blessings.

NAM

CHANGE

32 DAYS CLEAN

Just for today: I want to change. By working the steps, I will counter fear and denial and find the acceptance needed to change.

Hello and God Bless.

I think the just for today said it all. I want to change. But the fact is change is hard. It is a everyday battle to correct negative attitudes and behaviors and replace them with positive ones.

I will work the steps as best I can. I am currently back on Step1 and am not rushing through it. I am taking my time so I can take it internally. I have a lot of work to do because of all the years of neglecting myself. I am willing to face this challenge.

I will continue to reach out for help and I will offer help as well. I have noticed some change in my life and I will continue to striving to become a better person. I pray for knowledge of Gods will for me and the power to carry it out.

I know that change doesn’t happen over night and will take it One Day At A Time.

Thank you for reading today’s blog post.

As always feel free to comment below, join my blog or sign up for email notifications.

Peace and Blessings.

NAM