Category Archives: Faith

It’s really all spiritual.

Growing Your Beautiful Life

Hello Friends! I know I’ve been absent for so long. I am making an effort to return here regularly. I’ve mentioned before that I’ve stayed away from here because I realized that “Mother of Addict” had become too much of my identity.

Now I’m back because I know that “Mother of Addict” is not my identity. It describes one of the many roles I play in life – but it does not define me. I realize that while I don’t have control over many things in my life (or, even more so, in my children’s lives), I can have control over my own perspective about who I am.

One new identity I’ve added recently is Certified Christian Life Coach. Part of the reason I haven’t been here is that I’ve been building a new blog. I hope you’ll visit me there. My coaching blog (and my coaching business) is called Growing Your Beautiful Life. And we’ve just begun a journal project there. It runs for 10 weeks – and just started yesterday. So if any of you are interested in using my journaling prompts to explore who you are and where you’re going in this new year, please feel free to check out the blog and the project and jump in. You can formally register here (for a more personalized approach), or you can just use the journal prompts I’m posting each day. There’s no charge to register – it’s my gift to you!

In the meantime, I’m still OneMomTalking and continuing the journey. Know that I pray for you all (collectively and often individually), and send love across the cyber-miles.

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The search for 20/20

looking backHindsight is always 20/20 – or so they say.  But whoever made up that quip … I don’t think they had an addict in the house. Looking back doesn’t really make it any clearer.

Recently, a friend told me that she read this whole blog; so I decided to come back here and read it myself from the start.  I has been a few years and I was wondering what I would think. I tried reading as if I was a stranger to the story, which wasn’t very hard to do. I felt like I was a stranger to the story!

Here are some things I noticed:

  • The child who was in the most trouble (or causing the most heartache) got all the press – with only a few exceptions.
  • Insomnia inspires blogging.
  • Drug addiction sucks – for everyone in the family.
  • I was in some real denial even when I thought I had stopped being in denial.
  • This place and all of you here in blogland helped me preserve some sanity. Thank you.
  • My journey really has been God-centered.
  • The severity of the crisis made it seem (to me, at the time) like all this addiction stuff had been going on for years, when it was only one year from when I discovered the problem to when I chose to move away. (That left me feeling bad; like I gave up too soon – but I let that go quickly too).
  • I have so much to be grateful for.

Another popular saying:  “Don’t look back. You’re not going that way.”  Good advice.  There’s nothing I (we) can do about the past. Eyes straight ahead – forward, march!

Like Wind Through My Window

Image“The Power of Now” (Tolle) has spurred me to begin regular meditation sessions here at
home. He says to get quiet and feel the inside of your body. That intrigued me and I tried it and I find that it works to quiet my mind. I cannot sustain inner dialogue or ponder mistakes from the past or  create “what-if” scenarios if I am breathing in and breathing out and focusing on what’s inside my skin. May sound strange, but it works.

Today I stayed home from work because if illness. My chest is scratchy and my sinuses hurt and my whole body feels exhausted. Tomorrow I’m supposed to drive from South Carolina to Florida to see my dad for Christmas. So this morning I was grumpy and concerned that my illness might prevent this trip.  And so, in response to both the illness and the grumpies, I decided to turn off the tv, close the laptop, and meditate. Here’s what happened:

Round One: I sat cross-legged on my bed, breathing in and out, reciting a bit of a prayer/mantra, and getting quiet. I became aware of the stuffiness of the air in my house. I haven’t had windows open in weeks and I was filled with a desire for a fresh, clean breeze. I opened my eyes and got off the bed and opened the bedroom window, plus a couple of others around the house.

Round Two:  I resumed my position, this time facing the open window. I resumed my breathing and began to focus on the sound of the wind through the trees. I am one with the wind. The wind and the trees and I have the same creator. Slow breath in through the nose. Slow breath out through the mouth. Hear the leaves brush against each other and the passing cars… CRASH!! 

Apparently the window wasn’t inserted properly into its frame. The wind blew the window in (the bottom section – the glass and it’s surrounding frame). The wind blew the window in, it fell onto the nightstand, knocking down the lamp. The lamp fell down and off the table onto the floor, hitting the nearby ironing board as it fell, knocking the iron onto the floor as well.

So much for my quiet time. But It did make me aware of the need to fix the window.

As I put everything back where it belonged, believe it or not I became aware of how the wind through the window was a metaphor for life. Yes it was. Sometimes everything just gets knocked over. Sometimes something that we think will be peaceful creates a ruckus. So we pick up the pieces, look for life lessons to learn, and move on.

I am now reading Marianne Williamson’s new book “The Law of Divine Compensation.” She says that the Universe corrects us when we get off course. Sometimes, I think, it does that by knocking a few things over and showing us a new plan. (Fix the window, put the ironing board away…).

God is like wind through my window. Refreshing and beautiful, with an occasional surprise. May the peace that passes our understanding sustain you in your travels. God bless.

Peace and Now

You are nowYou’ve heard of “peace and quiet.”  I suggest we change the phrase to “peace and now.”  Now is quiet – maybe not outside of us, but internally…spiritually.  At the core of who we truly are, now is silent and cannot be altered.

Sounds too easy?  It is and it’s not.  I’m reading Eckhart Tolle’s “The Power of Now,” and I’m in a  section toward the back of the book titled, “Give Up the Relationship with Yourself.”  What? Isn’t our recovery about RECOVERING our own relationship with ourselves. It’s the same thing. Just roll with it for a minute and I’ll do my best to explain.

It’s this idea: “If you develop a sense of identity based on your [victimhood, loss, recovering-parenthood, etc.] you have escaped one trap only to fall into another.”  (That’s a direct quote from the book except for the parens).  This is because any identity other than your pure essence (some might say “God”) is frought with some earthly or ego-centered frailty at one point or another.

Here’s the peace in NOW:  Right now I am this breathing body filled with the spirit of life.  If, tomorrow, I experience a trauma and my mind/body experiences intense pain of some sort or another, at any given moment I am still this breathing body filled with the spirit of life.  What I’m trying to get to is this question (which we’ve discussed before in a different context): How do you identify yourself?  I’m thinking that the answer to this question begins any person’s true recovery.

I’m really just thinking through this “out loud” here on this screen.  But I’m experiencing access to an always-accessible quiet of “Peace and Now” lately. And this time it’s not just because my boys are in full recovery – because one of them had a relapse recently.  He had a relapse and I started to re-identify with my “parent-of-addict-filled-with-fear-and-worry” self again. But I was reading this book, and I find I’m changing a bit in my ability to … as A Course in Miracles says … “See things differently.”

Please know I’m not lecturing or making light of where you are, what you’ve been through, or what you’re feeling.  I’m just sharing an idea that might help others as it’s helping me today. Right now. God bless you.

Video

Questions for God

This is my first humble attempt at creating a youtube video with a bit of spiritual teaching and an original song. Surely we’ve all had questions for God. Please view gently – I’m just testing this out.

The Mourning Shall Rejoice

So my last post was a mournful one. Self-pity. Whaddya gonna do?

This post is rejoiceful!  My son, Dan, now 21 years old, completed his 1.5 year program in Recovery Court!  Yesterday they had a court hearing for all the Recovery Court people. And when it was Dan’s turn, lo and behold, he was greeted by: his current judge, his original judge, his parole officer, his counselor, his NarAnon sponsor, the people who worked in the jail when he was there, even the prosecuting attorney.  Even the judge’s clerk … and it was her day off.  They all came to congratulate Dan on a job well done and to give testimony, on the record, of what an inspiration it has been to watch him grow and heal.

I wish I could have been there. But his dad was there, which is good. I’m tearing up just writing it.

In this case, for my boy, “The System” worked.  The system I often railed against came through, partly because the program is a good one – a real example of the “it takes a village” philosophy.  So I hope that program continues to be supported.  But the program only works because of the people who run it.  They did their jobs with heart, and they — plus the hand of God — saved my son’s life.  And he has touched theirs as well.

I’ll write an official letter to someone there to express this, but I want to say it here: Thanks to all public officials who are in their positions for the right reasons, doing the best they can for everyday citizens.  Whatever I end up owing the IRS…it’s nothing compared to the gratitude I owe to all the people who walked beside my son at a time when I had to walk away.

God bless us all.

The Twelve Days of Christmas

The Twelve Days of Christmas – One Mom style, with many thanks

On the twelfth day of Christmas my children gave to me…
Twelve prayers answered,
Eleven years of therapy,
Ten gifts bought with their own money,
Nine brand new friends,
Eight college credits,
Seven hugs for Mama,
Six job applications,
Five straight good nights’ sleep!
Four of us in church,
Three siblings laughing,
Two new family members,
And the blessing of their sobriety!
~~~

I cannot believe that I get to spend this Christmas with all of my children! My boys are doing so well, my son’s girlfriend is also doing great and taking care of herself and my grand-baby-to-be… I have so much to be thankful for.  So to you all – those who share a season of blessings and those who are in the midst of the darkness that addiction can bring – I send you my prayers and my love.  Keep on living.  You are not alone.  We’re in this together.  God bless!