RISK OR RESENTMENT

When I look back to where I was 3 years ago, I can’t help but be amazed. I am amazed because for 40 years before that I played it safe. I was afraid to venture out of my comfort zone. Believe it or not I was in a state of comfort in my active addiction. Yes it was a horrible existence, yes it was and I do not take addiction lightly nor downplay just how hard life was. Although my life was not my own and was ruled every waking moment by the obsession and compulsion to use. I knew what everyday brought. The pain and suffering I endured, I had become accustomed to. The regular routine of using and finding ways and means to get more was my main focus day in and day out. I knew what to expect, I knew what to do. Every day was the same, some days more painful than others but I had grown used to and settled for the life that I thought I would always live.

If I had known then, what I know now. I wouldn’t have stayed stuck in that never ending cycle.I would have found a way out a long time ago had I only taken a risk to believe enough in myself, taken a risk to believe in what others were telling me. Had I taken simple risk. The risk of trusting my gut feeling that I could live a better life if I only tried. The funny thing about taking risks is that I cannot think about it for too long. If I do I will think myself right out of doing it. Whatever it is. If I wait until the time is right, wait until I am better equipped, wait for this or that. I will never get anything done. Procrastination is one of my biggest character defects. It is one of my oldest, longest and most deadly character defects. Procrastination has killed more of my dreams, goals and ambitions than anything else in my life. It has kept me from achieving a better life for years because I always put off changing until I thought I would be better off. I would be able to handle it or I would just plain ole say. I will do it tomorrow.

Procrastination..It is born from and lives vicariously through fear.

Fear of one thing or another. Imaginary or real. True or False. Fear keeps me from extending myself to others. It keeps me from reaching my full potential and visualizing my goals and dreams. Fear can be a motivator but in my case it became a stumbling block. It became a devastating crutch worse than my addiction itself, because my addiction was a product of that fear. For years I told myself that I wasn’t good enough and that I did not deserve to be happy, I didn’t deserve to have good things happen to me or for me. I told myself those lies for so long that I believed them. I believed them as if I had a stack of evidence to substantiate it. So believing that I wasn’t worthy of those things I did everything in my power to keep myself from experiencing those things. I did everything in my power to sabotage myself. Unwillingly and Unknowingly and Understandably so. I had lied to myself so often that my subconscious took over the job and held me to my own words. I didn’t even have to consciously downgrade myself, now it was built in and it did a fantastic job. It did exactly what it was meant to do. It served it’s purpose masterfully.

Being closed minded to anything new, better or different.

I proceeded to live my life stuck in a never ending cycle. Anger and resentments, isolation and degradation, despair and self destruction all took a front row seat. They took center stage and clapped when I fell deeper and deeper into the hole that I dug for myself. The person who was once a happy, smart, curious child was gone and this monster was in full swing. Only that side I thought was gone wasn’t. From time to time I could hear him crying out. This is not right. Help me please. But I was too weak to help him. I was too caught up in a self destructive will. I was too fearful, scared, confused and lonely. I was to ashamed to ask for help so I suffered in silence. I suffered for years a prisoner in my own body and mind. I was paralyzed by fear.

God’s will for me proved to be the turning point. For many years I cried out to God for help and for many years I refused to accept the help that my higher power kept providing me with. I let so many life boats, rafts, preservers and opportunities pass me by. I couldn’t see then that that’s what they were. I didn’t understand that those were the chances to break me out of the prison I had made for myself. I didn’t take advantage of those life saving moments. I always chose to return to the scene of the crime and start my cycle over and over again. In my darkest hour God came through once again. The difference is this time I was open to receive the help offered. I was finally ready to turn my life around. I thought I wanted out but by the grace of God and his mercy I realized that I wanted to live. I saw the light after years of seeing nothing but darkness. My mind has been opened to a new and exciting way of life. I stumbled a few times in the last 6 years and went back out to test the waters.

In 2013 all that changed and my life has been the best I have ever lived. I still go through ups and downs, but there are way more ups than there are downs. I have learned to sit my ass still, ask for help and be willing to accept the help when it comes. No matter how it comes. I have dark days. I am not and never will be cured of this affliction. I have taken many risks since. I have moved from New York to North Carolina.I took a risk and purchased a home in a state where I barely know 5 people. Lol. Wow. Who would have ever thought that this die hard Brooklyn Bully would ever leave. I sure didn’t. But I did it. I packed up and moved with my fiancee. Oh did I forget to tell you. I took another risk. I actually allowed someone to get closed enough to get to know me and we are getting married next year. Not only are we getting married but we are starting our own business together too. We are living a life that I never thought I would ever live. If you would have asked me 3 yrs ago where do you see yourself in 3 years. I would not have said any of those things. But yet here I am doing them. Living them. Enjoying them.

All I can say is Thank you.

I am grateful because the truth is…

I almost killed the wrong person and I could have missed all of this.

R.I.P.

Recovery Is Possible.

Peace and Blessings.

Eric Ease

I DON’T THINK SO. NOT TODAY

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I have been allowing my thoughts to have too much air time the last couple of days. I have been obsessive and compulsive and as a result my emotions have been all over the place.

I have learned that the mind can be a terrible place to dwell. That my thoughts are often off by a mile and that I should second guess and seek suggestions on some of the things that I think about.

It has been my experience that the battle that goes on in between my ears, if not exposed, can cause me to make some very bad decisions. My track record confirms that, I am not able to consistently make good decisions. Taking matters into my own hands, living my way and thinking I am in control are all results of listening to that voice.

Yes. That Voice. You know the one. That negative nosey body that amps up every situation. That same voice that tells me to do things that deep down inside I know are not right. Its that voice that has gotten me in more trouble than I care to mention.

I used to be embarrassed to admit that I had That Voice. Today I know that my addiction uses that voice to attack me. To check in to see if I am still committed to my recovery. It turns quite thoughts into a audio conversation in my head. The battle between good and evil begins and there can only be one winner.

Thanks to the recovery process. That voice has been losing the battle. But it is a persistent son of a gun. It won’t go out without a fight. It might stay quiet for a minute but bet your bottom dollar. It comes back to check in. The difference is I am aware of it today. I know what it’s motives are and I know how to shut it down.

I learned and will continue to learn some very valuable lessons in my recovery process. I am grateful that I have the open mindedness and willingness to continue on my journey regardless of what happens.

I have learned to trust the process and not the voice.

Peace and Blessings

Eric Ease

OUT WITH THE OLD. IN WITH THE NEW.

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I have been constantly reminding myself of this lately.

My mind keeps jumping back to old behavior mode and old attitudes are proving to die harder than I originally thought. I find myself wanting to resort to some of my old methods of handling situations. I am not talking about using substances to solve anything, I am referring to street tactics and antics. I have been sharing about my feelings with anyone who will listen. I have been struggling in the area of letting go. I know that it takes practice so I am not beating myself up.

I really need to get with someone and find out how to let go and not take it back. How to release the need to still try to control situations and manipulate outcomes. How do I kick these thoughts to the curb and not go back and pick them up later. Staying focused lately has been hard and it has been affecting my overall attitude. My spirit is feeling uneasy and I have been really irritable. It has been showing in more ways than I care to mention. I need a break from my own madness, a vacation from my thoughts. I have been sharing that I need to plug back in. I do not wish to be like the animal who gets cut from the herd on to be eaten alive by the savage beast.

Been there. Done that.

I know that doing the same things expecting different results is the meaning of insanity. It’s crazy how the things I am learning, I am relearning over and over again in different situations and scenarios. In the beginning my insanity was using drugs and thinking this time will be different. Now my insanity is taking on a new meaning it has taken a different form but the outcomes are similar in the pain it is causing. I am becoming more and more aware of myself. I am also becoming more aware that certain things that I used to do are no longer acceptable to me.. Because if they were I would have acted off the impulses already. I am fighting a war and the battle ground is between my ears.

I am grateful for the process of recovery for it is teaching me how to say NO. It is teaching me to be honest about my feelings and my thoughts. It is teaching me that it’s ok to talk about my feelings and not to worry about what others think or say about me. It is teaching me that I have to be responsible for my recovery and for my actions. How to show up for people and to ask for help when I need it.

I am grateful to have found a place where there are so many people just like me.

I know that my old ways do not work. My old ways got me a whole lot of pain, misery and suffering. To think that anything has changed or that I can do it different this time would be me believing the lies of my addictive thoughts and will prove once again to be a suicide mission. I do not wish to try to kill myself again. Not today not ever. I will continue to seek the help I need to get through this without taking any shortcuts.

My old ways will not open any new doors. They will only open jail cells or a casket.

Peace and Blessings

Eric Ease

DRUG DREAMS

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Last night I had a dream that was so real that I woke up terrified that I had used. I haven’t had a drug dream in quite some time and I was a bit shook by it.

Every once in a while during the day I might have a flashback but the dreams stopped a few months ago. I am constantly reminded of my active addiction at work. There are more than a few addicts who work for my company. I can relate to them of course because not to many 24’s ago that was me. So I am reminded and have the occasional flashback.

I know that the dream was just that..A dream. It is not my reality today. I have no desire to return to that part of my life. I did not entertain the thoughts. I did not go back to sleep and continue to dream about using. I shared the experience with some of network and I feel better knowing that those dreams don’t have to come true.

I put it out there and let it go. I have no intentions to keep them secret nor do I have to be embarrassed about having them. I am human and I have used for almost 40 years. For me to think that because I am clean I shouldn’t have drug dreams is ridiculous.

Secrets keep me sick.
I reveal them so they can die in the light of exposure.

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Peace and Blessings

Eric Ease

GIVE IT AWAY

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I spent a lot of years wondering what was my purpose in life. I think I have finally got a clue.

I remember when I was a kid I wanted to be a doctor. A dentist to be exact. I had a friend who’s father was a dentist and they had a very nice house and a lot of money. I thought that would be  me. As time went on I think I changed my mind so many times that I just gave up on dreaming of what I would become. When I started using all bets were off. All my hopes and dreams were smashed and discarded. I had lost all hope.

As a adult I knew that I was destined to be more than a bum. More than some washed up drug addict but I didn’t know how to go about getting out of the mess I made of my life. With thoughts of using clouding my every waking minute I had again lost all hope. I settled for where i was and believed that it was where I would stay until I died. I couldn’t stop using and had no idea that there where people out there that felt the same way i did, but found a way out.

I was blessed to have been spared death and to have found a new way to live. I was lucky, so many of my friends didn’t make it out. I think to myself at times and wonder why was I spared. What is so damn special about me that I was able to make it out of the depths of the hell in which I lived. Why me? I am learning that I should be grateful and not question why. I should just learn from my experiences and share with others what I have learned in hopes that I may be a light for those who are still suffering in silence in the darkness of active addiction.

I am thankful that I am able to share my story with others and I only hope that through my experiences someone can make a connection, have some identification and get some hope that they too can make it out of the darkness. I know how they are feeling because I too have felt that way. I have lived that life, I have given up on ever finding a way out. I know exactly how they feel because I am and will always be an addict.

The difference is I am a addict in recovery. I am practicing a new way of life that has offered me the opportunity to help others. The same way others have helped me.

My purpose today is to give it away.

Peace and Blessings

Eric Ease

TAKING MY INVENTORY

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I am feeling a bit complacent lately. I have been procrastinating with continuing my 4th step inventory and I have been slacking in my meeting attendance.

Although I am feeling good about the past couple of days events. I know that this is a warning sign. I know all too well what happens when I get comfortable in not doing the work necessary to maintain my recovery.

I am not in any way saying that I want to use. I know from my past experiences though, that I don’t have to want to use, to use. Once I know. I cannot go back to not knowing. If I choose to ignore the signs then I am taking unhealthy and unnecessary risks with my health and well-being.

I woke up and decided to do something about it. I read my 4th step from my Basic Text and from It Works How and Why. I opened my Step working guide and I did some writing. I am currently working on resentments. I will also get my ass to a meeting today and make my meeting attendance a priority again.

I made a decision to not allow my recovery to become stagnant. I refuse to allow my addiction to take control again. I will continue to do whatever is necessary to keep my addiction arrested one day at a time.
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I know that if
I AM NOT WORKING ON MY RECOVERY. MY RELAPSE IS WORKING ON ME.

TODAY I CHOOSE MY RECOVERY.