Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Being Convinced..... Step 3

The first requirement is that we be convinced that any life run on self-will can hardly be a success. On that basis we are almost always in collision with something or somebody, even though our motives are good. P60

I am well and truly out of
a tunnel I slipped into last week
having a mixture of PMT
and self will run riot
I told my sponsor I wasnt happy
she asked why
and I listed a heap of stuff!!

I needed to get that one out
She said that its hard trying to control the world
I was not a victim and if I took the drama away
I am just facing a few challenges
thats all!

When am in a tunnel
I cant see anything clearly
I can feel everything
I have slipped into a few times along the way
I used to look for the light switch
or the light at the end
Cos I didnt trust the darkness
This time I knew to keep walking
knocking into stuff I cant see
just keep walking
doing the next right thing
knowing at some point
i dont know when
it will become lighter again
and it has
faith is key for me
its grown from experience

I put the study books down last week
didnt go on a social
and went to a few more meetings
my peace of mind IS more important
to me that the course
without stability sobriety
I am nothing
guess what?
all was ok (are you suprised?)
I am not
Hindsight or as I heard this week
delayed wisdom LOL
used to be my teacher
now experience is my tunnel guide
and faith that I will be ok in the dark
as long as i dont sit down and wait for
things to change or give up and stop

They said at the beginning of the course
Turn up for everything
No matter what
Things are getting harder
So its even more important to
keep on keeping on
Got an excellent mark in an assessment
evidence to me that am on the right track

Everything is exactly as it should be
I dont have to make everything better
sometimes everything is
very challenging and difficult
if it were easy, everyone would be doing the course!

I needed to stop trying to try to let go
and just let go
get it?
no, I dont now
but it made sense at the time
and it will again when I get reminded

God, I offer myself to Thee-to build with me and to do with me as Thou wilt. Relieve me of the bondage of self, that I may better do Thy will. Take away my difficulties, that victory over them may bear witness to those I would help of Thy Power, Thy Love, and Thy Way of life. May I do Thy will always!" P63

Johno stop listening to your head
it tells you a pack of lies
just keep on keeping on
til your done!

Remember it was agreed at the beginning we would go to any lengths for victory over alcohol. P76 I also agree to put victory over old ideas in this one aswell.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Monday, October 22, 2007

Say hi to Sid and Dominick!!

New bloggers

say hi to

Sid "a Christian 12 stepper"

and Dominick hammering his way through with a sense of humour!!

Today (I)

We began to see that the world and its people really dominated us. In that state, the wrong-doing of others, fancied or real, had power to actually kill P66

Today I had someone living rent free in my head (resentment)
Today I have been praying through the day
Where did my freedom go?
God has dealt with this stuff in his own way
Tonight God gave me a wonderful phone call with a sponsee
I gave time time
I had faith

Praying works

When I dont know what to do
I know what to do
I continue to pray for Direction
until I know what to do
about what I dont know what to do...
Then I do it

Sunday, October 21, 2007

My Pain v Your Pain

My pain is more painful
Until I listen to your pain
then I think my pain isnt that bad

You really dont understand how I am feeling
You think I really dont know how you are feeling

Open your mind!

Is the pain you felt after being grabbed/assaulted in the street
LESS painful than I felt in childhood sexual abuse?

Is the pain you feel in giving up smoking and staying stopped
LESS painful than my giving up drinking and staying stopped?

Is the pain I felt after losing a parent
LESS painful than you feel changing a sponsor?

Is the pain I felt in turning up for work everyday
LESS painful than you feel turning up for a home group each week?

Is the pain i feel when you suggest I go out somewhere new
MORE painful than the way you feel when I suggest you pray?

Is the pain you feel when you eat too much chocolate
LESS painful than the pain I feel when I refuse to eat?

Is the pain I feel when you suggest I delete a number off my phone
MORE painful than the pain you feel when I suggest you stay away from that bar?

Is the pain I feel when I get to work late
MORE painful than the pain you feel when you take a line of coke?

Is the pain I feel when I see you smoking when you have cancer
MORE painful that the pain you feel when you hear I wont pray?

Is the pain I feel when I hear your pain when you wont take inventory
MORE painful than the pain you feel when you hear my pain when I wont let go?


Pain is Pain is all painful

Its my arrogance that tells me my pain is more painful than your pain
How do i know?
Its my arrogance that tells me my pain is not as painful as your pain
How do i know?

To try and exert our will try and live along spiritual lines
Forgiving others for their shortfalls
accepting I am just the same
Is painful

Pain is not a weakness
Its simply part of the human condition
Knowing that doesnt relieve the pain
Accepting it doesnt relieve the pain

Pain is the problem
Pain leads to growth
Growth is found in the solution
Pain to peace is possible
Living in the solution
Going to anylengths to releive the pain
Face Everything And Recover

Do you like being in pain?
Do you know any other?
Do you like living in the problem?
Have you tried everything ?

have we given time time?
have we set conditions on when we want the pain relieved?
have we set conditions on what we will do to relieve the pain?
have we set conditions on what we wont do to relieve the pain?
... well nearly anything....
Its ok, Spiritual lines is.... not immoral or illegal

When I am in pain...
there is always something I havent tried
which always relieves me of pain

which doesnt include
anything mood altering
or old isolating destructive behaviour

having said all that
this post is about
pain and pain

we all feel it
Question is
what are we prepared to do about it ?


If we dont know...
Give time time
We will soon know

Saturday, October 20, 2007

And another Paulo

Warrior of Light Blog
and how I see it fits
with the Just for Today card
and Big Book

This is Edition no 157

Fragments of a non-existing diary

In the plane between Melbourne and Los Angeles
This extract from the on-board magazine is attributed to Loren Eisley:

“The journey is difficult, long, sometimes impossible. Even so, I know few people who have let these difficulties stop them. We enter the world without knowing for sure what happened in the past, what consequences this has brought us, and what the future may have in store for us.

“We shall try to travel as far as we can. But looking at the landscape around us, we realize that it won’t be possible to know and learn everything.

”So what remains is for us to remember all about our journey so that we can tell stories. To our children and grandchildren, we can tell the marvels that we have seen and the dangers that we have faced. They too will be born and will die, they too will tell their stories to their descendants, and still the caravan won’t have reached its destination.”

Just for today
I will adjust myself to what is,
and not try to adjust everything to my own desires.
I will take my "luck" as it comes, and fit myself to it.

Notes to self
Enjoy the journey
Pay attention
No need to be afraid
everything is exactly the way its meant to be
Enjoy the present moment
There is no fear in the here and now
God doesnt give me more than I can handle
Have faith
We paddle, God steers
There are no coincidences
Put in the footwork, let go of the outcome
Turn up and see what happens
Face everything and recover
To thine own self be true

Big Book

The spiritual life is not a theory. We have to live it.P83

We will not regret the past nor wish to shut the door on it. P83

Established on such a footing we became less and less interested in ourselves, our little plans and designs. More and more we became interested in seeing what we could contribute to life.p63

Is he not a victim of the delusion that he can wrest satisfaction and happiness out of this world if he only manages well?P61

God, I offer myself to Thee-to build with me and to do with me as Thou wilt P63

All men of faith have courage. They trust their God.P68

We do not tire so easily, for we are not burning up energy foolishly as we did when we were trying to arrange life to suit ourselves. P88

We missed the reality and the beauty of the forest because we were diverted by the ugliness of some its trees. We never gave the spiritual side of life a fair hearing.P50

Take away my difficulties, that victory over them may bear witness to those I would help p63

Make it plain he is under no obligation to you, that you hope only that he will try to help other alcoholics when he escapes his own difficulties.p94

He had come to pass his experience along to me-if I cared to have it.P9

We feel we are on the Broad Highway, walking hand in hand with the Spirit of the Universe. p75

I pray that you now remove from me every single defect of character which stands in the way of my usefulness to you and my fellows.p76

Sunday, October 14, 2007

A Taste of Honey, Tasting much Sweeter than Wine....

Been down the gym
then spent most of the day
writing an essay, in silence
tis done YAY
Silence, yeh, i couldnt find anything
to have on in the background
Today Silence was Golden

Tonights different
Theres been a load of programmes on TV
about Bob Dylan and folk music
for some reason, its been perfect background
for me tonight, another assignment done

Its not been an easy week
Abit like self knowledge is not enough...
I have all this new information
and no idea how to set it on paper LOL
Thankfully someone volunteered to show me
a method yesterday which I have followed today
structuring an argument and supporting it
Phew! not perfect I am sure
But for a first attempt, I am pleased
will read it again tomorrow
before handing it in Tuesday

Great weekend really
Homegroup Friday a late one!
Out with friends last night
feeling really ok
it seems ages since I drank alcohol
it seems alien that I drank alcohol
seems normal now to order water etc
got home and made a start on the essay
this is the freedom from bondage
to get home nearly midnight
and willingly make a start
just putting about 800words of
whatever was in there on paper
It made today so much easier
some of it was irrelevant
some was suprisingly ok!

Gym this morning
and then back on it
Course became my higher power earlier this week
or was it my primary purpose for living...
those days were very hard
gladly the hair shirt is off for the time being
and am wearing life a little more like a loose garment

I also became aware of a relatively new non AA person
who has been more in my thoughts and in front of me this week
more than usual i mean, i have known for a while now though
since being sober
The old habits, old ideas, reappeared
thankfully I see them coming, and how destructive they are
I didnt question, I am trying to live my ideals
not be ruled by my defects
so a new healthy relationship is happening
(no assumptions, no fantasy, no predictions, no mind reading)
a relationship which means talking to someone and listening LOL
friendship, intimacy, taking a risk
see how it goes
whatever happens, I will still breathe

A Taste of Honey popped into my head tonight
and it reminded me of a summer
when I was well into self harm
isolating and being an all round
miserable f*cked up teenager
I stayed at a friends grandparents in Heage
a village in Derbyshire for a weekend
All I remember is the sun shining all weekend
they have a really big lawn
and an old victorian house
massive greenhouse not quite as big as those pictured in the link!
and a croquet lawn
we went down to the village fete or something
I enjoyed it and also remember feeling disconnected
not present, numb
the garden, the green and the sunshine, feeling warm
really sticks out
and it was the year I first encounted
the Venus Flytrap!

An I only just as I got to the end of the post realised
whet the 2nd line of the song is!
so I added it in the title

Anyway thats enough tonight
One last assignment before bed
I will leave you with
the song that I first heard that weekend
played on an old 45rpm vinyl!

A Taste Of Honey - The Beatles

sadly its abit jumpy am afraid

Thursday, October 11, 2007

another Paulo Coehlo

Melbourne, Australia

I step out on to the stage with the usual apprehension. A local writer, introduces me and starts asking me questions. Before I can conclude my reasoning, he interrupts me and asks another question. When I answer, he says something like “that answer wasn’t very clear.” Five minutes later, I feel a certain restlessness in the audience. I remember Confucius, and do the only thing possible:

“Do you like what I write?” I ask.

“That doesn’t matter,” he answers. “I’m doing the interviewing, not you.”

“But it does matter. You don’t let me finish a sentence. Confucius said: ‘whenever possible, be clear.’ Let’s follow that advice and make things quite clear: do you like what I write?”

“No, I don’t. I have read only two books, and I hated them.”

“OK, so now we can continue.”

The camps were now defined. The audience relaxes, the environment fills with electricity, the interview turns into a true debate, and everyone – including the writer – is satisfied with the result.

Just for today
I will be agreeable.
I will look as well as I can, dress becomingly,
keep my voice low, be courteous, criticize not one bit.
I won't find fault with anything,
nor try to improve or regulate anybody but myself.

Paolo & Just for today

Hakone, Japan

I finally manage to get my editor, Masao Masuda, to invite me to a traditional tea ceremony. We go to a mountain near Hakone, enter a small room, and his sister, dressed in the ritual kimono, serves us tea.

That is all. However, everything is done with such seriousness and protocol that a daily practice is changed into a moment of communion with the Universe.

The tea master, Okakusa Kasuko, explains what happens: “The ceremony is the adoration of the beautiful. All efforts are concentrated on the endeavor to attain Perfection through the imperfect gestures of daily life. All its beauty consists of respecting the simple things we do, because they can lead us to God.”

Just for today
I will be unafraid.
Especially I will not be afraid to enjoy
what is beautiful and to believe that as I give to the world,
so the world will give to me.

Paolo Coehlo - inspires me, I love so much of this mans writing and what he shares of others

Paolo Coehlo has been a conistently
inspirational writer for me
for a few years now
His simplicity and gentleness
is exactly what I need
his writing gives my heart that glow
I identify and love reading
his Works
God gave us Paulo Coelho
So I thought I would share some more
of his Warrior of Light Blog
and how I see it fits
with the Just for Today card
and the Big Book
If not members of religious bodies, we sometimes select and memorize a few set prayers which emphasize the principles we have been discussing. There are many helpful books also. p87

Again This is Edition no 157

Fragments of a non-existing diary

Copacabana, Rio de Janeiro

Strolling along the promenade, I hear a young woman saying to another in a very convincing voice: “I’ve programmed my life in the following way ...”

That made me wonder: does she take into account things that happen just when we are not expecting them? Has she considered that maybe God has a different plan, a far more interesting one? Has she thought seriously about the hypothesis that, by including other people in her program, she might be interfering in different ideas and projects?

I am not sure whether the sentence I overheard was born of inexperience or total delirium.

Just for today
I will adjust myself to what is,
and not try to adjust everything to my own desires.
I will take my "luck" as it comes, and fit myself to it.

Notes to self
I dont know whats good for me
I dont know whats best for me
Am I sure I know ? no
Am I sure I dont know ? no
My best thinking got me in here
God obviously wants the best for me
Trust God
Have faith
Blind faith
Why do you need to know whats gonna happen?
Why do you neeed to know?
Let it unfold
The joy in not knowing
I dont like suprises
I would like to like suprises
Do I trust you? 100%?
let go, let God
Analysis paralysis
Some of us have tried to hold onto our old ideas...
Rigidness, does not allow the sunlight in
Open up the dirty window
Lighten up
Dance like there is no one watching
Stop predicting
Stop mind reading
Stop crystal ball gazing
Stop thinking and just do it

Big Book Alcoholics Anonymous
Most people try to live by self-propulsion. Each person is like an actor who wants to run the whole show; is forever trying to arrange the lights, the ballet, the scenery and the rest of the players in his own way.p60

First of all, we had to quit playing God. It didn´t work. Next, we decided that hereafter in this drama of life, God was going to be our Director. He is the Principal; we are His agents. He is the Father, and we are His children. Most Good ideas are simple, and this concept was the keystone of the new and triumphant arch through which we passed to freedom.p62

We constantly remind ourselves we are no longer
running the show, humbly saying to ourselves many times each day “Thy will be done.” We are then in much less danger of excitement, fear, anger, worry, self-pity, or foolish decisions. We become much more efficient. We do not tire so easily, for we are not burning up energy foolishly as we did when we were trying to arrange life to suit ourselves.P87

We are sure God wants us to be happy, joyous, and free. P133

Saturday, October 06, 2007

Tradition 11 - Attraction NOT promotion - safeguarding the future of AA for the still suffering alcoholic who hasnt made it YET

Tradition 11 - Our public relations policy is based on attraction rather than promotion; we need always maintain personal anonymity at the level of press, radio, and films

Its easy to get bogged down with
oh well I can ignore this tradition
its about
press, radio, film
so it doesnt apply to me?
So whats it mean to the likes of me or you
who "today" is unlikely to
be pressed, radiod or filmed?

I speak for myself here
I look at what does apply, not what doesnt
what I can apply and not what I cant
and strive to maintain it
Public relations... thats anyone not in AA
whom I come into contact with
Attraction not promotion
this is practicing these principles in ALL my affairs
It is helpful to the still suffering
or the out their wilding it about unaware

When I apply the principles of this
programme at work
my colleague knows I led a "wild" drinking life
(wild is not a word i would use :D)
and likens it to hers...currently !?
she knows I have stopped
She knows the consequences became to disturbing
she identifies when I discuss my past
she knows her drinking is a problem
she hasnt yet reached a point
where she has had enough

So my job is to be of maximum helpfulness
and do my job, rock solid
even when she cant, and doesnt
I do
it helps her, that i am there
no matter what

I have no idea what the future holds
But I do know that
by leading by example it helps her
By living the spiritual way of life
I help her

A cousin is well in drinking himself to insanity
I have been watching
speaking with him (on and off) about AA
and them about Al-Anon
(for friends and families of alcoholics)
not rescuing, helping and letting go
helping and letting go over the last 4 years
often repeating myself
which is so often what you guys did for me..
until we are ready to hear
My uncle called me up recently and asked what he could do
This man is a proud man, retired armed forces...
big pint drinker... though not a drunk (i dont think!)
to call anyone up and admit he is beaten
and at a loss what to do with his son
IS a credit to AA and attraction not promotion
its not me, I am just the message carrier

By NOT standing in judgement or
the great know it all Alcoholic expert
just by being me
by being a responsible daughter
practicing patience, tolerence and love
with my Dad, it helped my dad, talk with his brother

We have a responsiblility when we get well
to carry the message (Step 12) and safeguard this thing
for the future alcoholic who wants it (Trad 5)

When? How long for?
The answer my friends is now and forever
Both of which reside in the present moment

Heres an extract from Paulo Coelho's Blog
I read today which
inspired the post along with my
Home group last night which was
on Tradition 11

Thinking about future generations

When he was a young man, Abin-Alsar overheard a conversation his father had with a dervish.

‘Be careful how you act,’ said the dervish. ‘Think about how your actions might affect future generations.’

‘What have I got do with future generations?’ said his father. ‘I won’t ever meet them. When I die, that will be that, and I don’t care what my descendants say about me.’

Abin-Alsar never forgot this conversation. All his life, he tried to do good, to help people and to carry out his work with enthusiasm.

He became known as a man who cared about others. When he died, he left behind him a large number of charitable projects which considerably improved the standard of living in his city.

He had ordered the following epitaph to be engraved on his tomb:

‘A life that ends with death is a life not worth living.’

Is your life affected by someone's drinking?
To help them, you have to help yourself first
call Al-Anon/Alateen
.... This week, I have had a massive hit of
"new vocabulary" OUCH!
... and acceptance
I will be wearing a dictionary in my left hand
for the forseeable future :)

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Settling in on course & plumbing fixed

The course, well I think
Well not its not all new
just knowledge presented in a different context
some new stuff though aswell

Oh yeh
as usual when embarking and embracing
change starting on a new Step, new job,
or letting go of an old behaviour,
sponsor, idea, partner
The Nightmare came SUNDAY
I had been watching out for it
and well gave up on it
and it came with a vengence
Nightmare Sunday night
EEEEEEEK it was a shocker
I have no idea
how my mind comes up with them
God please tone it down next time

Monday, after lecture
I slept SOOO soundly or did my brain just flake off?
I slept through alarm clocks
Infact sponsee woke me up with her early morning call!!

Yesterdays was easier, and I left lighter
So I am very happy
Lots to do this week
but manageable and attemptable
Its easy to see how complicated I could make it...
If I didnt listen and be guided by the lecturer

Day to day
Back in on Yoga
Back down the gym tonight
Turning up for work and working
(as opposed to think about course)

Plumbing... yes plumbing thats a story
Blocked pipes for a while
Plumber recommended some drain uinblocker
Plumbers merchant refused to sell it me
Cos "if I wasnt careful I would stain my furniture"!?
I still get resentment when I go into a plumbers merchant
and they talk to me like I dont know what a copper pipe is
or where my stop cock is and what a ball cock does
Dont they know who I am!? the arrogance of me yeh get down Johno
(I am a DIY enthusiast)
I didnt argue, just left after a few attempts to buy it
I just had to accept they didnt want to sell it me for my own good
Gods Angels and Kindness, comes in many forms

I went to B&Q saturday
and bought the same drain unblocker
off the shelf with no human aid
the instructions and warnings are on the box
clearly written

Resentment and defects aside
B&Q is MUST, its got everything I could want and need!
Its a 4th dimension
Its one of the few shops I can leave
WITHOUT getting a resentment
I love B&Q! its true!

Anyway, used it EXACTLY how it was said
nothing happened
put more in
and again
next morning again
nothing... still blocked
self will run riot
not willing to spend out on a plumber
determind to fix it on self will
and prayer

finally, gave up and let go
tried the plumber who was MIA all week...
his phone had been locked in on a job!

It is worth waiting for I promise...

So my AA plumber is sick
so i offer to take my key over to him
so he can come over sometime to fix it
yes, so i make a 5 hour round trip to take key
for my benefit, we have AA chat at same time
great company I have to say

I get home
Put the washer on just incase its fixed
even though am telling myself that
INSANITY is repeating the same thing over and over
and expecting a different result

Anyway, what happened was, the blockage had shifted
I ran a bath, it drained in RECORD time
what had occured ?
a bleeddin miracle!?

I was prepared to finally let go and hand it over
to a PLUMBER greater than myself
God knows how much that was gonna cost
and it fixed itself...
Itself and the drain unblocker.. and prayer of course!

I am grateful this is a win win win situation


I got peace of mind, my plumbing is fixed
I dont get a very large plumbers bill
which means I got more money to spend on
very expensive uni books!

win win win

Have a good week all :)

I am happy and grateful
I am not immune,
I have fear around my course
inventory shows me the truth
A day at a time
follow the instructions
ask questions
keep it simple
be guided by the lecturer/s (power greater than)
just turn up to everything
attempt everything
do my best
right or wrong
nothing... NOTHING goes to waste!

Thank you God