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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HAPPY VALENTINES DAY

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It’s been a long time since I had a reason to think about Valentines Day. I remember seeing the commercials on TV for jewelry or chocolates or flowers and saying some pretty mean and nasty things. I was bitter, angry, frustrated and resentful to say the least. I hated the day and everyone else for being happy. Loneliness and isolation will do that to you. Needless to say it was just another day for me. Another day to be miserable about my life and how it turned out. Another day to blame everyone but myself for my circumstances. Just another day to be mean and spiteful. Just another day to use to try to escape my reality.

I am grateful that I do not feel that way today. For the last couple of years I celebrated loving myself on Valentines Day. I took the opportunity to treat myself to chocolates and a movie or whatever else. No I did not buy myself flowers or jewelry…Lol. I know someone out there was asking themselves that question. Although I did not have a girlfriend at the time I turned to myself and showed love. I have to admit. It was not the same as having someone to share with. But it worked out just fine.

This year I am happy to say that I have found the love of my life. I have someone to share this day with and the rest of my life with as well. We will have many Valentines Days and many new beginnings and special days, months and years together. I spent the holidays with my lady and even though I had been sick from Christmas through New Years running a fever, cold chills, sneezing, body aches and temperatures ranging from semi normal to 103 degrees. We had a wonderful time together and we made the best of it. She took great care of me and I appreciate her all the more for the time we spent together and apart. We have lots of fun together. We laugh and joke, we talk, we go out, we travel, we communicate and we love each other for who we are. We do not try to change each other. We accept each other for who we are and respect each others opinions and views. I am grateful that my higher power saw fit to bring us together and I am thankful that she has the ability to see me coming at times and not let that get in the way. She is a wonderful woman and I am blessed to have her in my life.

So I will take this moment to acknowledge her in my blog the way I acknowledge her in my life.

Thank you for being in my life. I love you sweetheart.

HAPPY VALENTINES DAY. MUAAAAAAAH.

MY VACATION IS OVER. WAAAAAH WAAAAAH SNIFF SNIFF

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I am grateful for many things. I have a higher power today that allows me to have the faith that anything is possible. I have friends today that I can actually count on when I need them. I am working on relations with my family. I have a job that I actually can show up for. I am healthy, a lot better than I should be for someone that has been through what I survived. I have the most amazing and wonderful woman in the world in my life. I have been afforded yet another opportunity to experience the blessings that I have taken for granted for so long.

I could continue but I would never be able to write down all the things that I am grateful for. I can only express my gratitude by continuing to live life doing the next right thing. I finally understand and accept that I do not have all the answers. That I do not know everything and I will never be too old to learn. I learned things from some of the most unlikely of people. People I probably would never have met or ever spoken to if not for the process of recovery.

As a result of my new way of life, I am learning how to enjoy the journey and not always look ahead to the finish line. Living a day at a time has helped me slow down and experience the joys that have passed me by for so long. Simple things that bring about joy. Going on vacation. Spending time with my friends and going to functions and events. Going on road trips, making meetings in other states, connecting with people whom I only knew on social media. Sharing our experiences, having laughs and breaking bread.

Life looks really good from where I am standing. I owe it all to my Higher Power, Network, Recovery and my own willingness to try something different. I wouldn’t trade this for anything.

Live, Love, Laugh and Let Go
Peace and blessings

Eric Ease

GOOD MORNING

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Today’s a great day.
LIVE , LOVE, LAUGH AND LET GO.

I am grateful for everyone and everything in my life today. I recognize the difference in how my life is shaping up compared to how my life used to be not to many 24’s ago.

Then

I was always angry, frustrated, lonely, in despair, desperate, lost, useless, worthless and disconnected. My life was in shambles. I just lived to used and used everyday to live. I thought that was all I could expect from life. I had lost all hope of ever accomplishing anything. I gave up on myself and settled for less than I was worth.

Now

Life is amazing. I am learning to love myself. To not be so hard on myself. It’s a process. I am very hard on myself and I am learning not to take myself so serious all the time. I feel a sense of purpose and the freedom I am experiencing is nothing short of spectacular. I feel like I finally belong somewhere and that I can make a difference. I am willing to give back what was so freely given to me. I help people and I am no longer afraid to admit when I need help or to ask for it. I am happy and joyous. I look forward to waking up and whatever the day brings.

The difference

The difference came about from devine intervention. I know that it was the God of my understanding that brought forth this change. I cried out for help and the universe answered. The difference is this time I heard it and was willing to do something about it. I finally realized that I can pray all day but if I am not willing and if I do not do the work necessary nothing will happen. I cannot sit around and expect my life to change if I do nothing to bring about that change. I also know that I have to remain vigilant. I cannot expect to keep this gift I have been given without the continuously working on myself. Construction is always underway. Change happens when I am in the solution and not stuck in the problem.

Gratitude is my Attitude.

WE DO RECOVER.

BECAUSE I’M HAPPY

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I used to think that I would never find love or be happy. It seemed that I was destined to be miserable and alone for the rest of my life. I couldn’t understand why I kept getting into bad relationships and why they always ended with me being the bad guy. Hurt and alone one day I decided to give up. I figured right then that being alone was better than being in another bad relationship.

Deep down inside I truly wanted to find someone to love and to love me. I felt lonely and like no one cares. I felt abandoned, betrayed, unloved and unloveable. My mind raced with all the reasons why I didn’t need anyone and as a result. I became a bitter person. I blamed everyone and everything for my circumstances not realizing that it begins and ends with me. I was the cause of my unhappiness. I was the reason my relationships weren’t working. I was selfish and self centeredness is the core of the disease of addiction. But I was in denial and continued to blame everyone else.

Eventually I realized it, but it took me years to understand it. It wasn’t until I came into recovery that I began to get an understanding. I was afforded the opportunity to do some work on myself, ask questions and get acceptance of the part that I played in all of my relationships. I began to understand that it’s not all about me and that I am not as good nor as bad as I’ve told myself for all those years. I am finally able to take a look at me. To talk about me, my feelings, thoughts, hopes and fears. I am learning that being vulnerable is not a bad thing. I’m not saying that I like being vulnerable and it’s definitely not a easy thing to do. But I understand that I don’t have to be afraid to be vulnerable because I grow from the experience and exposure. I am learning to love myself for who I am. That I don’t need anyone to validate me. I am worthy of love and it starts from within.

I am not saying that I have mastered anything. I fall short on a regular basis and make plenty of mistakes since getting clean. I have tried and failed and felt like giving up from time to time. But I know that If I allow myself to give up then I am not allowing myself to grow. I will be stagnant and become complacent. I will eventually return to my old ways and that is unacceptable.

That being said I met someone recently. In the beginning I wasn’t sure whether I was really ready. I was afraid of being vulnerable because I allowed my worse fears to make me feel inadequate. To make a long story short and that is by no means to take away from how we got to where we are today. I am happy. She makes me happy. We are happy together. I miss her when I am not around her. I think about us and I can’t help but smile and I get a warm feeling. It’s been a long time since I’ve felt this way about anyone. It’s scary at times, but I will not allow fear to rob me of my happiness any longer. Learning to love myself has allowed me to learn how to love her. It is still a learning process and I will never be perfect. She allows me my process and I allow her hers.

I never thought I would be happy again. Recovery has afforded me my gifts and I am truly grateful. But no gift I could ever receive is better than the gift of love. When it’s given and received.

That my friends is priceless.

OVER COMING MY OBSTACLE.. ME

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I remember how I used to let minor setbacks and obstacles deter me and stop me in my tracks. I would get so frustrated and perplexed. Literally bent out of shape by the smallest of things.

My lack of confidence and my inability to deal with problems as they arose became a stumbling block that I just couldn’t seem to get over. As time went on I refused to even try. I tried to avoid problems and proceeded to live life like I was walking on eggshells.

I would go around, over, under or back the other way. Trying to avoid dealing with problems became a full time job because in my active addiction problems were around every corner. It was exhausting, time consuming and hazardous to my overall health and well-being.

Eventually I became my biggest obstacle. I blocked my own blessings. I blocked my own growth, and blocked my self from progressing to bigger and better things. I allowed my fears, low self-esteem, lack of confidence, low self worth and despair to become a way of life. I accepted that as my fate. I gave up and settled for less than my best.

I thought that was how it was supposed to be. How my life was meant to turn out. Using and becoming addicted at an early age afforded me nothing but missed opportunities. I missed out on learning how to grow up and learning how to cope with life. I just tried to numb away my problems and pain.

Today thanks to the process of recovery I am over coming my biggest obstacle. Myself. I am learning so many things now that I should have already known. My thinking wants me to believe that I am stupid and tries to have me believe that it’s too late to change. I know better. I do not feel less than any longer because I am just now getting it. I feel grateful and thankful that I am alive to get it.

Obstacles are placed in my path every day. The difference is today It’s not me that’s the obstacle. Today I have the tools to get through them and I utilize them. I am moving forward towards bigger and better things and nothing can stop me now.

Peace and Blessings

Eric Ease

WHY I CARE TO SHARE MY STORY

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I have been sharing here on my blog for almost 4 years now. I started when I first came into recovery back in 2011. I’ve shared my ups and my downs. I have shared my feelings and my thoughts. My triumphs and my failures. At best I try to share as much of my life in recovery as possible without sharing too much of the negative side of my addiction. I give glimpses of some of the horrors that I have seen and been through without going into the specifics. I tell my story how it was then and how it is now.

I used to wonder if I was doing the right thing. Exposing myself for the world to read. I already know that there is a negative stigma attached to the words addiction, addict, drugs and even recovery. I also know that there can be some negative repercussions behind it. To tell you the truth. I don’t care.The public can and will use this against me and try to make me feel like I have done something wrong and deserve to be alienated or punished for it. The public has a unhealthy fear and a uninformed opinion about addicts and people in recovery and they need to be informed. It is time that people stop turning a blind eye and start getting the information needed to not only understand addiction but to help fight it.

I feel that my story is one that needs to be told and that nobody can do it better than me.

I want people to know that addicts and people in recovery are human and not cast away’s. Not lost souls or garbage that you just toss to the side and forget about. That we are suffering from a disease not a lack of respect, scruples or discipline. That it is hard enough dealing with something that I can’t describe let alone understand and the last thing I need is you judging me. People need to know that addicts have no control over their addictions.

People need to know that its not about why won’t they just quit. I wish I was able to just quit. But the obsession to use was over powering and the compulsion to continue using no matter what was the end result. That once I was caught up in the grips of addiction all rational thoughts begin to cease and self centered thoughts on getting and using and finding a way to get more begin to take over. It is not personal, it is not intentional. It is not about you. Not at all.

The world needs to understand that addiction is a mental, physical and spiritual disease that is hell bent on destroying not only my life but the lives of those around me as well. Addiction is a deadly disease. I know first hand the damage it causes, to not only the addict but to everyone affected by the addict.

I want people to know, to understand that addiction is not the end of the road. That there is a way out. That if I can do it, SO CAN YOU. That is why I share my story. I want the addict who is still suffering and the family member to know that there are people who have made it out and are living productive lives. That they too can do it.

I had to learn how to ask for help. I had to want to receive the help that people were offering me. I could not do it for anyone else. And no one else could do it for me.

I had to do it and want it for myself.

STARTED FROM THE BOTTOM NOW WE HERE

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I remember how hard it was for me to get clean. I can remember plenty of nights crying myself to sleep. (When I could sleep) I was so distraught, desperate and just beat down. I was at my lowest and thought I would die like this. I remember wishing that day would hurry up and come. I remember wanting to expedite that result because it was taking too long.

I remember where I came from. I keep it fresh in my mind so I will never forget it. I share it constantly as a reminder of where I can return to. It only takes a second. One wrong decision. One drink or drug. I will be right back in the grips. The never ending cycle. The desperation,   The isolation, The degradation. The Loneliness and Despair. It only takes one. I know this today.

I used to get frustrated and angry because I felt I should be somewhere further along than I was. I was trying to rush my process looking for quick results in short periods of time. I realize today how damaging that was to my recovery. My addiction made me feel that the process wasn’t working. Instead of me looking at how far I had come, I was focusing on how far I had to go and why it was taking so long.

My disease played me right back out the door.

Starting over wasn’t easy. I was very hard on myself. It took some time and some help from my Higher Power and from those in my Network but I eventually was able to learn to forgive myself and allow myself my process. To allow myself to grow at my pace in my own time. I stopped comparing myself to others. I started to compare myself to where I came from. I was able to start seeing the growth. The change was there all I had to do was look inside myself. Not outside at everybody else.
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I started from the bottom and now I am here. I am right where I am supposed to be.

Peace and Blessings

Eric Ease

THERE IS POWER IN LETTING GO

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Recently I had been struggling with letting go of a situation that was happening in my life. It was repercussions from not handling my responsibilities while suffering in active addiction.

I tried unsuccessfully, everything under the sun to control and manipulate the outcome of said situation. The only thing that came out of that was me being stressed out, angry and resentful. Because I was placing unrealistic expectations on myself. Because I was trying to out think the problem. Because I was looking for instant gratification.

It took me some time to finally realize that I was caught up in a cycle of insanity. I was doing the same thing expecting different results without the use of any mind or mood altering substance. I had to take a hard long look at my behavior patterns. It was an awakening that led me to finally surrender.

Once I was able to say I surrender and it is what it is. I was able to let it go. I had to start looking past the problem. I had to stop trying to fix something that was not broke. A funny thing happened once I was able to do that. I felt lighter. Literally.  I felt the weight of all that stress, worry, anger and aggravation lift off me. It was an awakening that led me to a sense of freedom.
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I am beginning to understand that there is a certain power in letting go. I cannot fix, manipulate, con, go around, under or over. I have to be patient and work through. I have to understand that I have no control over certain situations and that even the worse situations eventually will pass.

Peace and Blessings

Eric Ease