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

 

LEARNING TO DANCE IN THE RAIN

DANCE

Hello and God Bless You.

As you have probably noticed I cut my blog back to once a week. I have to start implementing some balance in my life. With my work schedule being so erratic it was becoming very hard to also write my blog and do all the other things so I chose to make my blog a weekly post for the time being.

As much as I love to share my thoughts and feelings with you all it does pain me to have to cut back so I have decided to start sharing my older posts with you.

With that being said

I have been suffering from a case of negative thinking patterns again. I know that sometimes it can sound like crying wolf but for those of you who know how addiction works this is a battle for my life and the old negative thoughts will never completely go away. Also if you know anything about addiction you know that I am only as sick as my secrets and exposure helps defeat thy monster. Now this doesn’t happen all the time but it does pop its ugly head up in some of the strangest and most serious of times in my life. For instance I was feeling a bit low the other day and the I CAN’T tried to invade. I can’t do this anymore. I can’t continue living like this, I can’t make this new position work, I cant make a meeting today. Well you get the picture.

Of course I know that this is just my addiction checking in to see if I have a weak spot in my recovery as it will do from time to time because it not only wants me back but it wants me DEAD. I have learned so much in recovery that I am aware of this today. There was a time when I used to believe all the negative thoughts and I would be out there all fucked up right now. I lived that lie for too many years..NOT TODAY. I have a tool box full useful techniques and people who are wise beyond their years in my corner who help me.
(THAT’S RIGHT I AM TALKING ABOUT YOU)

Also I was on Facebook the other day and my friend Regina H mentioned a book which I haven’t read in a while so I decided to read it again The Power of Positive Living by Norman Vincent Peale. It has helped to remind me that I am going to live what I think. If I think that I can’t do something and keep telling myself that I can’t then guess what. I can’t. It also reminded me that I have to replace the negative thoughts with a counter thought a positive thought to out weigh the negative one. Once I do that then I have to keep reinforcing it or the negative thought will haunt me and pop back up.
(This is so true because it happens to me from time to time)
I am grateful that I use what I choose not to loose.

One of my favorite phrases is
PROPER PLANNING PREVENTS POOR PERFORMANCE.
It is just a little something that I keep saying to myself and it helps me in times when I am in my feelings.
I know that this is a lifelong fight. I accept the challenge gracefully. I have a higher power that I choose to call GOD. I pray and pray some more. I am not gonna sit here and have you thinking that I got it all together and life in recovery is so freaking easy because it is not. It may seem that way at times because I try to remain upbeat.

IT IS NOT ALWAYS SUNNY BUT I AM LEARNING TO DANCE IN THE RAIN.

Peace and Blessings

Eric Ease

A HEARTFELT THANK YOU

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I have been nominated for The Dedicated Blogger Award by my friend Xena author of the blog We Hold These Truths To Be Self-Evident. I truly appreciate the nomination and am very honored. I especially feel thankful because it’s always a great feeling when someone acknowledges your work. I feel a sense of gratitude because I know that by me telling my story I am helping others. I look forward to continuing writing my story and sharing it with the world in hopes that it helps.

I ALMOST KILLED THE WRONG GUY

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I am a recovering addict. I’ve used drugs for over 3 quarters of my life and I never thought that I would ever stop using. Today I am 2 years 1 month 2 days clean.

I had plenty of support (in the beginning) but as time went by and I kept using no one cared anymore. No one tried to help me because I refused to help myself. I refused to help myself because I believed the lies that I was telling myself. I believed that I wasn’t that bad. That I could stop any time I wanted. That I would die using. ALL LIES. I had given up all hope a long time ago and settled for life the way it was. I was miserable all the time, I was angry, lonely, desperate, tired, ashamed, guilt ridden, fearful, disgusted, broken, battered and bruised. Then one day I realized that when I tried to stop, I couldn’t stop. For the life of me I just couldn’t stop.

Addiction had it’s grips on me from the beginning. I’m talking about being a dead black out drunk at the age of 12. I’m talking about snorting coke and heroin, smoke dust and dropping tabs of acid before my 15th birthday. All the while telling myself that I can stop anytime I wanted to, I just didn’t want to stop. I was having fun. I was free and everything was alright.The more the evidence pointed towards me having a problem the more I denied it. The thicker the cloud of denial the more I used. The progression got deeper and deeper and I got lost in the covering up and hiding. My whole life changed for the worse and I still lied to myself about my problem. Deep down inside I knew better but I had no idea how to turn things around. I had no idea the depth of my addiction. Jails and institutions followed but I still didn’t stop. I would come home and start the vicious cycle all over again. Over and over, year after year.

My story is probably no different than a lot of other people’s. I say probably because I can only tell my truth. I cannot speak for someone else. I can however say this.

THE STRUGGLE IS REAL.

Addiction kills everything. It killed my hopes, my dreams, my faith, my family, jobs, friends, relationships and in the end it almost killed me. I was ready to die. I wanted to die so bad that I looked for ways to carry it out. I thank God that I was not successful. I am grateful that I was blessed with opportunity after opportunity until I finally took advantage of the help that was being offered. If I had been successful in killing myself…

I WOULD HAVE KILLED THE WRONG GUY.

The guy that I wanted dead was fueled by obsession and compulsion, by self centeredness and ego. I was brain washed into thinking that I was worthless by a disease that wants me to believe that I am better off dead. But I was sick and I really didn’t have a choice. I was saved by my higher power. Something called and the real me in a moment of clarity was able to answer. A desire was awaken in me to change and I was blessed with yet another chance. I am given this chance to make a difference not only in my own life but to spread my knowledge, my experiences, my hopes to others. Letting others know that there is a way out of that mess. There is hope and life after the living hell from which I escaped. I know this today and I keep reminding myself that.

I would have killed the wrong guy.

 

Peace and blessings

Eric Ease

HOSPITALS AND INSTITUTIONS

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A couple of days ago I posted about going to a detox unit to share my experience, strength and hope. I talked about how gratifying the experience was and how satisfied I was when I left there. I remembered what it was like sitting in those seats oh so many times myself and how I never utilized the life saving information that the members of H&I were so freely sharing. I remember it like it was yesterday when I was there sharing and I even felt a little saddened about how long it took for me to get this message.The sad feeling was very short lived. I am learning to love myself today and not dwell in the mistakes of my past. The truth is I just was not ready. I was in denial of my addiction and would not have made it here any sooner. I know today that I cannot allow the pain and misery of my past to dictate my actions today. I can only live for the moment.

So in living for the moment, I was thinking about different things that I want to do with my life in this moment. After going into the detox it got me to thinking that this would be the perfect thing for me to do right now. I would like to find out more about doing service in Hospitals & Institutions. I expressed this thought with my sponsor, my woman and some of my network who encouraged me to go for it. They reinforced what I was already feeling, that this would be the perfect opportunity for me to give back and help carry the message. To be able to share recovery with  those who are not able to make meetings. It will also benefit me and help in my recovery process. It will help me to continue to grow and become more responsible. After all I cannot keep it unless I give it away.

So with all that being said I decided to take action. I went to the H&I Subcommittee meeting today and observed the atmosphere. I spoke to some people who knew that I wanted to get involved before and told them that I was ready. I was introduced to the coordinator and got some more information. I was able to make a decision and I am now a member of the training track for H&I. I am extremely excited about doing service on this level. I feel like this will be a good fit for me and look forward to learning the procedures and policies of Hospitals & Institutions. I look forward to having this commitment and doing it to the best of my ability. This is a step up from doing service on the group level which I have done since becoming a member of the fellowship.

Growth involves change and this is just another step in the ladder towards that change. That means stepping out of my comfort zone. I am grateful for the opportunity to be able to do service for a program that has changed my life for the better.

 

GETTING OUT OF THE COMFORT ZONE

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I have been trying to find what it is that I want to do lately as you all know. I have been running myself ragged thinking, thinking and more thinking but wasn’t putting forth any action.Then I had made a decision to focus more on my blog and start posting, reading and commenting more. Getting back to the basics of why I started my blog in the first place but also wanting to take it to new levels. I have been reading new blogs and posting comments, following new blogs and reaching out to other blogs that are not recovery oriented as well. I also have been promoting my blog on social media outlets and even inviting guest bloggers to submit articles about their own experiences in this wonderful journey of recovery.

I feel good because I said I wanted to do something and I focused on doing it and but forth the action required. I have been talking a lot about doing this or that but not putting the action behind my words and I was feeling a little stagnated. I was stuck in a old but familiar place. Comfortable in being in a safe place. A zone of taking no risks so I would not be  disappointed. Safe in the zone of fear of moving forward for fear of failure. That old attitude and behavior that kept me sick for so, so long. I thank my support system for all the encouragement and love that they have given me over the last 2 years. I would not be where I am today if I had continued to try to do this alone.

I know all to well what happens when I begin to feel that I should not try to do new things. The old thinking creeps back in and tries to convince me that I am not worthy of any of the gifts that await me and that I should not try to move on my ideas, dreams and goals because I will just fail and feel miserable all over again. Well to those thoughts I say

KICK ROCKS WITH FLIP FLOP

I am a different person today. I am not that same old scared to do anything person. Today I look forward to moving out of my comfort zone and although it is difficult at times I want something better for myself and I have to move in order to get it. If I stay stuck in yesteryear I will get those same stale results. I want fresh new results and I am determined to see them come to fruition.

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New beginnings.

I have a wonderful woman in my life today and she is truly amazing. She has the spark that I have been missing and I draw from her energy. She is her own woman and is very independent. (I Love That). My woman is starting a new journey and it really has been an eye opener. I watch her and the enthusiasm that she displays and it motivates me to want to do better. She’s smart, sexy, has determination and a vision. She has goals and she is not afraid to go after them. She is definitely a go getter. Boss Lady. I love her and I want to do whatever it takes to make our dreams a reality. I know that whatever we decide to do, wherever we decide to go we as a team can make anything happen. I look forward to having a partner to grow with and to build with. This is new territory and if I was to say it’s not a little scary I would be lying. But fear will not stand in the way of my happiness. Not today.

I truly believe that this is my time. I can feel it and for me to just sit back and watch it slip away again would be a tragedy and a waste of another perfect opportunity. I think I’ve done that enough in my lifetime. The time for action is now.

OBSESSIONS, COMPULSIONS AND CHARACTER DEFECTS

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I have just learned about my obsessive and compulsive behavior only a couple of 24’s ago. I didn’t understand when I was using why I couldn’t stop thinking about it or why I continued to use knowing the consequences of my actions. Thanks to the process of recovery. I am beginning to get an understanding.

Now that I understand a little about obsession and compulsion I am noticing those behaviors in other areas of my life. I can no longer blame the drugs or blame anyone for my behavior. It has become painfully obvious that the problem lies within me.

My last bout with obsession and compulsion had me searching for love in all the wrong places. Banging my head against the wall and blaming others for my unhappiness. Getting involved in relationships that I had no business being in and feeling not worthy in the end balled up wondering why me, why am I here again. Only to repeat it the minute someone shows an interest.

Low self esteem and still having feelings of wanting to fit in have plagued me lately. I have to resolve those old issues and build my own self worth and love of self. I have to stop looking outside for what can only be found inside of me. Until I do I will never be able to fully commit and have a healthy relationship with anyone.

I am grateful that I no longer have the need to always be right, to beat myself up or to run, duck, hide and quit when the going gets tough. When I make mistakes or when I repeat something because I haven’t quite learned the lesson yet.

I have found the strength to let go of obsessing over people. Just for today I am concentrating on me. I am looking forward to doing the work necessary to grow. I know that I can be my biggest cheerleader and also my worse critic and my worse enemy. But as long as I continue to show up. I know I will grow up.

I will put down the bat and pick up the feather. Focus on what needs to be done and not on my need for instant gratification.

Peace and Blessings

Eric Ease

OUT WITH THE OLD. IN WITH THE NEW.

old ways

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

STOP TRYING TO FIX IT.

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When I read this quote it hit me hard. It made me realize that I have been chasing after something that I will never get back. It was a once in a lifetime shot thats gone.

It takes me back to my active addiction. For years chasing a high that I would never be able to duplicate. Chasing after a dream that would never become a reality. Trying so hard but always falling short. Yet and still trying anyway.

In recovery we equate insanity with doing the same things, expecting different results. I always looked at that as meaning my life in my addiction. Using drugs with the hope that this time would be different. I am beginning to realize that insanity is not only referring to my active addiction. Insanity still manifests itself in my life in recovery.

Insanity is still active in certain areas of my life. It’s just showing up in different ways. It all has to do with my thinking and my using. Not using drugs but using people, places, things and situations. Addiction is cunning, baffling, insidious and insistent. It never stops trying to find ways and means to make me destroy myself.

One way or another it doesn’t want me to be happy. It wants me dead but will settle for me being miserable. I have to be on constant lookout for signs. Attitudes and behavioral changes. Its a never ending battle.

Letting go is easy, not taking it back is where I struggle. I try to damn hard to have a peaceful existence with myself and others. Trying to manipulate situations for favorable outcomes. Especially in relationships. I need to let go. Its broken and I will not try any longer to fix it.

I will fall back, stay in position for the blessings that are coming and stop trying to create own.

Peace and Blessings

Eric Ease

UP, DOWN AND ALL AROUND.

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I am all over the place emotionally. One minute I’m up the next I’m down. I am having difficulty letting go of a situation that I have no control over. I let go only to pick it back up and go through the hopeless feelings again.

All the while I know deep down inside that in the long run I will be alright. I cannot stand the feelings of worry and impending doom that I am feeling. I know that if I surrender and just continue to do my best that all will be well.
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So why am I struggling with surrendering. Why do I continue to plot, scheme and try to figure out ways to get around this situation. Rather than just let be what will be. I know that its just me wanting what I want when I want it. I still struggle with wanting instant gratification.

This too shall pass. Not in my time but in time.

Peace and Blessings

Eric Ease