Category Archives: faith

You Win Some and ……

I lost a client today. She wasn’t the first and I’m pretty sure because of my chosen career, she’s not going to be the last. But I can tell you, they are all hard losses. When your in school or in supervision meetings for your license, they tell you excellent skills and techniques like…leave it at the door when you leave work or you know that you’ve done all you could have done. And also, they made the choices, you can’t save them all, it’s the nature of this beast called addiction and yada yada yada.

warrior woman praying

They mean well. They often speak from their own experiences of the one who got too close to their heart, hit to close to home, reminded them of ole so and so or such and such’s daughter, son, uncle , mother…Here’s my personal favorite. I came up with it myself. I believe it with every ounce of my being and every fiber of my spirit! Some of us plant the seed, some water, some weed but only God can cause the growth. Truth I say! Truth! Dear friend it is the truth.

But when everyone left work today and I was by myself in my office, I cried. I cried for the fiesty woman that I met just 60 short days ago. I cried for the dreams she had, for the help she wanted, for the relationship she was trapped in that had killed her long before the cancers in her lungs and stomach every ate her insides away.  He was a cancer that sucked the life out of her and refused to allow her to get the medical attention she  needed a long time ago.

That speaks to his own issues. And quite frankly, she let him do it. That’s a WHOLE different subject that we can look at later. Cause this is about her!

Finally, some of the other clients got together and literally CARRIED her to the hospital and left her. THEY MADE HIM LEAVE HER. And I thank GOD above for those people. Otherwise, she would have died in a rented room, in excruciating pain, not being cared for properly, weighing all of 60 pounds soaking wet. Thank you for stepping in for her! I pushed hospice, I begged to get a release to talk to her doctor, but I was always told smoke and mirrors. Sticks and tricks. Things that in the scheme of things didn’t even matter.

Being the brawler that I am, I stopped allowing him to come into my office after meeting with her for the first time. My Spirit just said something IS NOT RIGHT HERE. If she really wanted him in there, she could have said, “Let him in”. Funny though, she didn’t. I saw her two times after that. Then things went downhill so fast my head was literally spinning.

Within 30 days of our first meeting, she had dropped a good 30 pounds (she wasn’t a big girl to begin with). I remember someone saying, “Hey, she’s in the lobby, come and see her”. I jumped up and ran out, afraid I would miss her. I didn’t really need to worry about that: She could hardly move.  My girl sat there all hunched over, hooked up to an oxygen tank. I smiled and told her how glad I was to see her. I really was. Oh, how I hugged her. Gently of course, because she was so very frail. I knew then, it was the last time I would see her on this side of life. My sweet firecracker, fizzled to a remnant of her former self. An empty shell of a woman sitting in the lobby of my clinic.

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Thanks to Deviant art~~ https://daniiroo.deviantart.com/art/We-re-Broken-People-517839798 caption

I was told that her daughter didn’t even know she was dying. I tried to find her on FB and other places and couldn’t.  One of the brave clients that made sure she was safe at the end of her life said that her son made it in, but that she did not get a chance to hear his voice before she passed. I think of how tragic it all is. How heroin tears up a life and then other lives attached to that life and then other lives attached to the other lives until there is nothing but a dank and rotten hole in the universe. I wonder how her daughter feels not being able to hold her mommy or stroke her hair at the end because she is hung up in her own addictions and was off to the races. Her sugar daddy couldn’t find her or refused to pass on the message that my lady lay dying. She was animate about finding her daughter but I couldn’t find her. She couldn’t find her. No one could find her.

Tears run down my cheeks. Theirs is not the only story that will end like this. I cry for every one that has been lost in this ongoing war. I cry for the babies of the parents that are dead, in jail, strung out, tricking, treating, what the heck ever. I cry for the families that are perpetuating this sickening play to the 3rd and 4th generation.  I cry for the army of men and women that report to the triage centers every day to patch up the walking dead, weary wounded soldiers that have fought one more day on the battlefield of addiction.

triage

I pray and cry over their lives. That the trauma would not grow to be too much. That they would practice self-care for themselves. That they would take time out of their days, weeks, and years to love their children, families and friends. That they would stop and smell the preverbal roses. I pray that the workers would learn to reach out to each other and stop killing their units with friendly fire.

I pray for a lot. I know. God knows, and He really don’t mind. Didn’t He say, “Ask for the Nations”.

Well Lord. I ask for everyone in my clinic and the other six that are affiliated with mine. Then for all the staff and clients of all the centers I’ve ever worked in. And while I’m at it, how about all of Baltimore City, and Baltimore County and hell, why not Maryland as a whole State.

Wait, while I’m asking, I cover their families, their children and grandchildren, and all the staff, I pray for answers to this opiate epidemic. I pray for the key to unlock all addictions, and the human brain, and your pretty big , I pray for the meth problem in the WHOLE WIDE WORLD AND the opioid and cocaine, and pill and weed and cigarette and alcohol and everything else.

jesus prayers for the world

Cover it Lord. Cause we can’t!!! It’s too big for us! Even all of us together. For this one little Lady that I pray is being feisty and fiery up in heaven with you tonight Jesus! For her and her daughter when this hits her like a ton of bricks that she wasn’t there.

 

Amen

 

 

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How the seasons can impact recovery

Here’s an interesting article on how the changing of the seasons can effect us.

Click here to read the post from “The Addictions Help Center”

every-leaf-is-a-flower

Remember to celebrate the little tiny things that make each day a gift to be opened and enjoyed

Life on Life’s Terms

What does that mean when you are in recovery?

Think about it…

I know that, today, I can handle some pretty difficult circumstances without running to the liquor store, refrigerator or shooting a bag of heroin. Today, I don’t want to numb myself.

Why? That’s a good question for me to contemplate…Why? Because I want to experience everything that my life hands me, throws at me and craps on me.  I want…no I need to be an active participant in the day to day living and dying of my life.

You see, today, my mom has basically lost the battle she was fighting with dementia. I’m about to go and get her from the hospital, where she has been for 5 days, and bring her home. My mom has sooooo many illnesses that she is trying to live peaceably with. It’s not working. Her lungs are shot (COPD). Her heart, well that old thing is tired, worn out and struggles to keep the blood flowing through AFIB, congestive heart failure, high blood pressure and Type 2 Sugar.

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This is my mom at Christmas in 2011-with her first great grandbaby

This old gal stood up to the courts of heaven and cried, screamed and plead during the throws of my addiction.  She lived it all as I numbed myself to escape the pain, she lived it.  So now it is my honor and privilege to enter the courts of heaven myself and cry, scream and plead. I want to be sober and vigilant. I want to be in my right mind as I battle this battle for her.

Oh Hon, don’t get me wrong, IT IS VERY HARD. I am a drama queen, a loud mouth piece, arguer, fighter- I am THAT WARROR who doesn’t know the meaning of stop or surrender. But through all that, through the anger that we may throw around, through the mean words spoken by both of us, I love that old girl.

I REMEMBER the days that I came home to try and hustle some money with my latest lies and schemes only to have her hand me a bag of food and send me on my way. She told me that she would cry for hours after she sent me on my way. I didn’t know that at the time. I do now. All the anguish and pain she was experiencing as I numbed myself every day for years.

Now I am the night watchman on the wall. When she cries out at night in fear, I quiet those fears and then I bombard heaven until I fall asleep again.

When she is confused and doesn’t know what is reality and what is not, I am here trying to be vigilant; trying to be the keeper of her memories.

I sometimes go along for the ride when she doesn’t know fact from fiction. I’ve been told that this will help her quiet her agitation. After all, when we are in the throes of our addiction, don’t we live in a fantasy world that we created so we don’t lose our sanity?

So that is why I live my life on the terms that the good Lord sees fit to send my way. I trust HIM enough to go along with the trials and triumphs that we call life. He is after all THE GOOD LORD.

So as you read this, look honestly at your trials AND YOUR TRIUMPHS! Look at how far you’ve come. Even with the mistakes you’ve made, you are STILL better off now than you were in your addiction

Put the work in

One of my biggest pet peeves with the Newbie to recovery is that they don’t want to put the work in. What does that mean??? It means that they often put themselves in harm’s way to get the money for the drug of choice, to find a place to use it and then to be high only to come into treatment and whine because they have to go to meetings or group!!!!

Are you kidding me??? Are you for REAL??!?!?!?! We sold our souls, stole from our families, our kids, we sold our bodies, we would do ANY THING that the corner boys told us to do to get a tester, a blast, out of the gate…BUT 2 weeks into recovery, we cry because getting up to go to a group or meeting is just TOO DANG BURN HARD.

hard work from freeimage.net

(Thanks to Freedigitalphotos.net for the picture)

I am sure I felt the same way. But when I entered recovery, I had a group of women around me that pushed me, believed in my recovery and went out of their way to help me get to where I needed to go and do what I needed to do.  Also my mom was my biggest fan. She provided the free babysitting that helped me get back to work within 5 months.

One of my mentor’s quoted over and over, “No correction feels good (Click the link to see Hebrews 11:12 in several translations)  at the time you receive it, but in the end it is very profitable for your recovery (Growth, success, etc.). That one saying carried me through celebrating 16 years of recovery 7 days ago.

Everyone’s story is not the same. It’s as unique as the individual. One thing that is consistent throughout the recovery process is that there are people who are willing to help. Even with all of the mess we bring into recovery. Just like in anything else in life, you have to find your tribe-your path.

And let me tell you, it does get easier! Otherwise we could not or would not recover. Addicts do NOT like pain-Why else would we put ourselves and our people through all of that if we could just walk into recovery and feel no pain.  IT HURTS TO RECOVERbut buddy o’ pal I wouldn’t change the journey at ALL (except for the pain I caused to my loved ones). That struggle, the pain, the tears all of the blood and gut wrenching pain has made me who and what I am. That Recovery Drill Sergeant that will fight with you until it is settled and you are on the other side of that moment when you chose recovery.

We’ve all heard the phrases and slang in the rooms or in jail on the wall –

“This too shall pass” or “My worst days in recovery are better than my best days in addiction” and oh how about this one “Recovery is not for people who need it, it’s for people WHO WANT IT.”

I like that one. Basically when I started in recovery I could only do it 5 minutes at a time. Then it went up to 10 minutes, a group length, a day, a few days, then weeks, months and now years.

freedom next exit

But any time I start to whine about the work or the struggle or whaaa whaaa whaaa , I turn to My Higher Power, my King and His Spirit encourages me, and lifts me back to my feet and brushes me off so I can finish the race.

I tell my client’s all the time. “We are either working on recovery or we are working on a relapse. There is no sitting on the fence and taking a time out. Because your addiction has been sitting in the recovery groups with you so it can learn what you’re learning and can throw that monkey wrench in your workings. It is crafty, devious and DEADLY!”

My goal is always to encourage and to lift up those in the struggle. I do NOT do this by hand holding and paddy caking. That’s not what a drill sergeant does. They get ½ inch from your face and scream at you and put foot to butt so that when you leave treatment, you will not die as soon as you get home. Or in other words, you won’t go cop as soon as you hit the hood.

Stop whining!  Or if you have to whine, whine as you keep crawling forward. Whine as you pick yourself up. Whine and WIN this thing.  How about this; instead of whining how about thanking your Higher Power for waking you up ad giving you one more day on this glorious ride we call living!

Thankful and humble people make it until the end of the race!

Here’s one of my favorite C. S Lewis quotes…

cs lewis hardships

 If you would like, I would welcome your feedback. Until next time! Live long and prosper dude!

 

 

 

You can be free from your addiction

Everyone can recovery. I know, because I was a hopeless case. My family had written me off as unredeemable. That’s just crazy! Every person that is was or will be can be saved. Saved from themselves, saved from their addiction no matter what they are addicted too and saved for hopelessness and despair.

If I can do it so can anyone else. The problem with recovery processes is that the person in recovery thinks that they can come int

freedom next exit

o treatment and then sit on their rumps for the duration and walk away a changed person.  That is a flat out lie!  If you are a drug addict using heroin every day, you had to make the money to get the drug. Then you had to find it and get some place that you could smoke, shoot or sniff it. THAT IS WORK.

So give yourself a chance. Come in to get help and then accept the help for what it is.Don’t try and tell help how to help you. Keep your mouth shut and your ears and eyes open and soak it in like a sponge. Freedom can be YOURS. All you have to do is want it bad enough and it will be yours.