All posts tagged: encouragement

Clear Vision

Something eye opening happened recently. I had been holding off on writing a life-journal update because it seemed there was nothing exciting to share. Eventually I did—in my No News is Good News post—but by the time I sat down to write I was tired. What I failed to mention is that I had one of those aha moments just prior to writing.

Nurture

RDP Thursday: Nurture verb: care for and encourage the growth or development of. noun: the process of caring for and encouraging the growth or development of someone or something. My featured image is kind of random! I did so many assignments in the past semester that the rebel in me has been fighting to break free and do something that’s just “because.” No judgement, no grade.

Happy Anniversary!

Mere color, unspoiled by meaning, and unallied with definite form, can speak to the soul in a thousand different ways. Oscar Wilde Would you believe that today marks exactly two years for me here on the blog? Another week and I’ll also reach two years and seven months sober. Praise God for that! Time flies when you’re busy making plans, that’s for sure. Speaking of making plans, I had an epiphany recently. One of the students in my English class mentioned something about changing how society views a certain subject. I can’t remember what it was she was referring to, but that’s not really the point anyway—it’s what happened after. Grinning, our professor reminded the class that they were young, and that they had their whole lives ahead of them to change the world. At first, I felt a little sad. There I sat, surrounded by teens and young adults—the oldest probably 26 years old—and I was… well… somewhere in my fifties. Somehow his words just struck me. It’s not often that I get discouraged, but …

The Makeover

You can use an eraser on the drafting table or a sledge hammer on the construction site. Frank Lloyd Wright So true. It pays to fix your errors as soon as possible. Fortunately, there are also times when you can tweak or modify. That’s what I’m STILL doing here. It’s been quite a chore, but it’s also been enlightening. Reviewing some of my past writing has reminded me of things I’d virtually forgotten. On the one hand, I’m a little tired and stressed out after reading posts that I wrote over a year ago. On the other hand, it’s been a real gratitude exercise! For anyone who is blogging their way through recovery, all I can say is don’t give up! It’s so great to have something to look back at—something to remind you of where you were then vs. where you are now. Plus it keeps you busy! I also had some serious laughs last night when I came across posts where I was chasing birds, or chasing the wind—and my old Discovering Joy …

Food For Thought

First of all, I was asked to do a panel Saturday night. When I got there and saw my friend behind a podium (with a microphone!)… I almost lost my cookies. And yes… that is what I had to do. Share my story in front of a fairly large group from behind that podium. That’s a FIRST for me, for sure. One good thing about “telling your story” is that you really can’t mess it up, because it IS your story! It never changes! Overall I think it went well. Which leads me to the point of my post… My inner critic. Let the Lunatics Out of the Attic I read the coolest thing in a book on introverts. Visualizing your inner critic. I’m sharing it with you because there must be someone else out there who could benefit from it. That’s my guess anyway. So, the inner critic starts out looking like a big ogre. A large, mean and very grumpy looking character. He looks a bit like a judge; wearing a robe, a frown and holding a gavel. Why …

Having Enough

Of all the paths you take in life, make sure a few of them are dirt. John Muir Sometimes I think or say something, and later I realize that it wasn’t 100% correct. I try to look at it like there’s a lesson that I need to learn, or a new discovery that I can take away from it. I’ve mentioned before that it’s important for me to learn how to live sober, and that DOES (and probably always will) hold true—however—there are other things that I need to DO, and I always seem to put them at the bottom of my list! Giving. Being of service. Carrying the message. Thinking more of others. It’s not that I don’t have a huge desire to be selfless… I really DO! It’s that my mind keeps returning to my old thought pattern—which goes something like: What do you have to offer? You’re not ready. You’re not well enough. You don’t know enough yet.  I can go on and on, but you get my drift. IF I allow myself to listen to and believe those thoughts… I’ll NEVER be …

A Note on Gratitude

As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them. John F. Kennedy I should make it a habit to write in the morning. My outlook is so good when I first wake up. At night my thoughts get lost in a fog of the day’s events, and I’m not always thinking clearly. First of all I’m going to change my image challenge. The things I’m grateful for isn’t working for me at all! I’m finding it hard to use my imagination when it comes to choosing and/or creating photographs that coincide with the many things I’m grateful for, and the frustration in that process is trying to steal my joy! Go figure. 😉 Anyway, I really can’t narrow down my gratitude like that either. When it comes down to it… I’m grateful to God, and I’m grateful for life. My sober life. My new freedom in Christ. Everything beyond that is an added bonus. But seek first the kingdom of God and …

Reblog: I’ve Been Published For The First Time Ever!

Originally posted on Bec's Blurbs:
I always knew I was a creative person, but it wasn’t until a couple of years ago that I realized how much of my identity is shaped by it. The way I view the world, including my major life choices, all stem due to me being creative. It dictates the way I think, and therefore it’s the lens in which I make decisions and view life. I wrote this article because it’s important for people like me to know they’re not alone. I decided to submit it to Thought Catalog on the off chance that they would publish it. Since I’ve never being published before, I didn’t expect for it to get accepted; however, last Friday I woke up to an email with a link to my published article. This is what I want to do. I want to write to give hope to others. I want to dance my story to let others know they are not alone. I AM A CREATIVE.  ? Check out the article here: “To…

Stay Focused

First of all, as a little side note to my Confession series—I’ve been contemplating a reining in season for myself. When I started this blog in October, I was literally floating on a cloud of peace—focused on God. To be honest, sometimes I fear lately that I spend more time talking ABOUT God, than I do talking TO Him. I have a tendency to run VERY far ahead of Him, and I can almost envision myself tripping up. Not drinking, but that “free will run riot” thing. It is an absolute MUST for me to stop and listen to Him, and my eagerness and excitement about life these days can get in the way of that. Like Gil always says… my faith is very childlike… and I really DO feel like a child. And my Father needs to be in my sights… …or I am doomed. That being said, I had an epiphany while I was sitting outside, thinking about all of that. I was lost in thought and heard the old crow across the bridge. …

New Beginnings

Well, here I am… a bit weepy again. It’s a good cry though. It’s been two months since I started this blog, and in four days I’ll be taking a nine month chip. During these past two months—not only have I been sharing my story, my thoughts, my dreams, and my many pictures—but I’ve been semi-quietly trying to figure out just where it is I’m headed next. Attempting to lay out plans and chart my own course, as they say. I really AM a strong person. Sometimes I think it’s a good quality, and other times I think it may be a hindrance. Mainly because that outwardly resilient woman tends to boss around the fragile young girl that hides inside (who’s trying very hard to grow up, mind you); telling her to GET ON with things! Stay busy. Make a plan! It’s very nerve racking. Gil… my dear friend, brother, daddy figure, mentor (and so much more) said something to me when I first started putting my story together in a book-like format, and then again …

Conversation with God

Father, you feel so far away,I’m not sure that my words are right.All I ask is to feel you near…Did you hear my prayer last night? Open your eyes my little one,Remember the veil was torn apart.Be still, and know that I am God…for I am speaking to your heart. I’ve summoned the wind to join us,My spirit stirs amidst the breeze.Look! The branches, they dance about…Rustling leaves whisper melodies. Forever and ever I am with you child,I’m everywhere, and in everything.Your words need not be perfect…I know your heart, I hear it sing! Oh thank you Heavenly Father,for this song that you’ve given me.I’ll be back again tomorrow…to dance beneath our sacred tree.

The Journey Continues

My life today looks nothing like it did a year ago. There’s definitely still a lot of construction in progress, but compared to my life was when I was drinking—it’s like heaven. I am happy, joyous and free! I’ve been doing some thinking though. How do I propel myself into the next phase of my life? I want to experience growth. I’ll be fifty-five soon. My life has slowed down, and my priorities are now in order (for the most part). Things are definitely different, but I need to expand. I’m feeling stagnant. So… I decided to take on a challenge. The journey continues! For my fifty-fifth year I want to do 55 things I’ve NEVER done before, including random acts of kindness. That’s a little over one per week. I’m super excited. This will be a year to celebrate (sober!), and see if I can give something back.

A Step Forward

There’s a term pink cloud that refers to a state of mind in early sobriety, characterized by extreme happiness and grandiosity, in spite of problematic conditions. The newly sober person feels high on life because they’re experiencing emotions that were previously numbed by alcohol. Once I read up on the subject, I knew it was time to take a harder look at myself. Not to mention the fact that a couple of my longtime sober friends expressed their frustration with me, uttering cries that I “wasn’t getting it!” Needless to say, I was booted off of my big cushy cloud. Fortunately I didn’t plummet and hit the ground exploding, but I DID crash land. Rather uncomfortably, I might add. It appears I don’t handle criticism very well. After I picked myself up, I realized that I’d been holding onto an optimistic delusion about recovery. Every time I managed to “get” sober, I considered the crisis over, and deemed the problem solved. I’d frolic around—reveling in my sobriety—and never REALLY attempt to change. Given my previous track record, …

Through God’s Eyes

There was something else on my mind when I first contacted my friend Gil. I was trapped in that little world that I call SELF and I knew that I needed to get out of there. I wanted to make a contribution to this world. I’m going to back up and talk about the man that I saw for four months, who finally admitted he lived with a woman. I actually mentioned to him that I’d written about him in my story. I had to assure him that he was anonymous just to bring some color back into his face (and later I learned why!). Anyway, he had hopes that I likened his character to Chuck Norris, but I’m going to call him your average “Joe”. It was never my intention to present a one-sided version of this particular saga. Obviously he was dead wrong to withhold that crucial piece of information from me, but in spite of THAT, there are some really nice things I could say about Joe. We had many laughs together, he …

Hearing God’s Whisper

Whenever I talk about finding God, I always wonder how people perceive that. You know… like… I wonder if they think I saw a vision (or thought that I did). How else DO you acknowledge that you’ve found something that can’t be seen or touched? Sometimes people come into your life, and whether they stay long or just pass through briefly, they leave you with something. They have an impact on you. To me, that’s God. When I was younger, the handful of times I attended church had discouraged me. I showed up. I tried to understand. Sadly, I was like a fish out of water. I felt nothing. It was like walking into a theater… in the middle of a movie. The entire time you’re watching it you’re trying to catch up, but it’s not making any sense! Everyone there knows something that you don’t. They know the WHOLE story. I spent months on end corresponding with a dear friend of mine (the one who inspired me to share my story) when I was drinking …

Rewriting Your Story

I love road trips. When I hit the open road I feel a sense of freedom that I just can’t experience anywhere else. It’s so exciting to map out the route, book the lodging, and search ahead for landmarks to see and places to eat. In other words, my travels are pretty well thought out before take-off. It’s not quite as easy to plan a spiritual journey. Mine started off with a wholehearted search for God, and months of reflection. I was determined to understand how (or why) I fell in love with alcohol. In the awkward years of adolescence, my childhood innocence vanished and was replaced with the dreadful practice of measuring my “worth” by my appearance and popularity. Quite frankly, I wished I would disappear. It seemed to work, actually. Many grammar schools had melded into the seventh grade, and somewhere in that transition, I became invisible. I did NOT fit in. It’s almost surreal. Four decades (and a lot of haze) later, I still remember those days clearly, and can visualize myself observing the others. …