Thursday, March 31, 2011

Perceptions they are a changin'

Today is much better. Thank you for your suggestions & support!
I got my butt to a meeting last night,  I didn't want to be there in fact through most of it I was seething.  My skin was crawling with anger & resentment.  Somewhere during my not so great day yesterday I decided that all the big questions in my life needed to be answered and I also knew that they were not going to be but my ever willful self just decided to keep myself in that prison of despair & hopelessness, a downward spiral of my very own making that I was just plain too stubborn to pull out from.

I'm usually an action kinda guys especially when I'm feeling off, but yesterday I just didn't want to.  My ego or my sub-conscious or whatever crossed his little arms, plopped down on the ground and said NO, I'm staying.

The first crack in my veneer occurred outside the meeting, a very nice & short talk with my sister (who I'm usually giving advice to) who reminded me of something I needed to hear about myself .....shortly thereafter I was catching up with some other fellows when out came a day counter, right up to us and said hello.  We got to talk about him, it was a nice but brief break for my brain....then into the meeting,  which was a topic meeting, and the topic was perception.

I realized I needed a shift in perception.  I also realized that I can't force these things, that I just needed to feel my feelings and move with them. Sometimes where I am is exactly where I'm supposed to be.
I still have a lot of questions today, but I also have some patience, faith & stillness. I am so grateful for that and for the life I'm allowed to live because I am sober today.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

The Edge of Discomfort

Well hello,  sorry I stayed away so long.  Everytime I've tried to write I come up with reasons not to.

I think mostly it's fear.  I'm afraid of the things I've been thinking, feeling etc. and so I do what I know to do best - clam up.

Mentally, I know this does not help me.  I'm always amazed out how much pain or uncomfortablitly I can just sit in because, well, it's comfortable, familiar, safe.

We finished a series in Intensati based on 'The Four Agreements' by Don Miguel Ruiz this week.  It was a great month.  We also worked a series called 100% PURE LOVE (courtesy of the amazing Lindsay.  Both of these I think have pushed me to a place of extreme self reflection.  Which is fantastic!

What happens though when I don't like or am unprepared for the thoughts that occur?  Thoughts like:
I'm not sure I want to live in New York anymore
I'm not sure I'm willing to do the work it takes to succeed as an actor in this city

Thought I never thought I would be having.  Needless to say, I FEEL a lot about these thoughts a kin to a Tasmanian Devil whirring around inside.

I can't focus in meetings, it all sounds so good for that hour a day but when I leave, it all comes rushing back.  I feel I'm on a precipce of what I'm not sure and I feel the only thing preventing me from taking the leap of faith is me. This too shall pass, I just wonder if I should be doing something

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Why?

I once heard that 'why?' is an unfaithful question.

I heard a qualification the other day where the speaker talked about his first year in sobriety prior to his relapse, and the whole first year he kept trying to figure out WHY he drank the way he did. 

I started thinking about my own story and how I sometimes get very wrapped up in the WHY.  The truth is there were a million whys and it doesn't really matter why because I never needed an excuse to drink. I would find one. Or perhaps just do it cause it's what I did.

What matters and the reason I know that I'm an alcoholic is what happened after that first drink, or sometimes in the middle of it or even sometimes after that first sip.  I became consumed with having more,  more alcohol, more attention, more fun, more more more.  That is a fact I know. That is a fact I live with and that is WHY everyday I ask for protection to not pick up that first drink.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Gift from the Heart

While I was directing the round up play we did a secret Santa. My gift was the book 'The Language of the Heart' a collection of 'Grapevine' writings by Bill W. and almost a history lesson of this program of AA.

I've been reading an entry a night, just a couple of pages. Last night's reading (pgs 6-9) I found particularly interesting with regards to 'our public relations policy'

particularly this paragraph:
"During the his first AA years every AA has had plenty of the urge to revolt against authority. I know I did and I can't claim to be over it yet....I can look back on such experiences with much amusement. And gratitude as well. They taught me that the very quality which prompted me to govern other people was the identical egocentricity which boiled up in my fellow AA's when they themselves refused to be governed".

This struck because recently I've felt exactly that way.This reading made me feel very much less alone.
I've been working with my partner to try & get my finances straight. I want to do this so that we can save for our wedding. I also want to do this because I have never been disciplined about this area of my life. 'On paper' as it were, I was ready to try our new plan but when it came down to it and I had to be accountable these huge walls & resistance went up. I was reminded about the paragraph above.

I am praying to be more willing to work together with someone. It's hard to ask for help, but sometimes even harder to accept it. Progress not perfection

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Make Something

I am not one who enjoys art museums or galleries.  Actually, for the most part they make me sleepy.  Yes, I'm able to appreciate art in it's many forms but museums & galleries just don't get me going. 

Especially what is considered Modern Art.  For some reason, I always feel like: really? I could've made this...

Anyway,  I came across an article in Time MAgazine that I found fascinating.  It profiles a modern artist named Thornton Dial.  While the author delves into deeper meanings of this man's 'works of art'.  I was touched by his story.  He loses a job and simply starts to collect things,  mold them, meld them, paint them in an effort it seems just to make something beautiful.  The article notes that the artist lacks of formal training & has had very little school.

It highlighted for me that conundrum I often think about.  Talent.  I have it, I believe it's divinely inspired and I do my best to honor it.  I sometimes think though that I would have been better off not going to school for 'it'.  I left school with more doubts than I had before school and it's almost to the point that anything I do talent-wise (singing/acting) is covered cerebrally by all the things I 'learned' about how one is supposed act, sing etc.   Throw on top of that the fears, doubt and insecurity that alcoholism breed and it's one dangerous concoction for the soul.

I thinking about Mr. Thornton Dial,  I think about the talents that God blessed me with and how grateful I am to know that I possess them.  How grateful that when I honor them, I also honor my maker & myself. 

Art as subjective as it is is merely an extension of one's own creativity however that chooses to express itself in your life.  Go out & make something.  That's all Mr. Dial did, no thoughts to what i could be or should be.  Or in the words of my favorite lyricist:  "Let it come from you, then it will be new,  give us more to see" - Stephen Sondheim

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Long. Slow. Recovery

I was moved deeply by this morning's reading about hope & patience.

I remember when I qualified for the first time after hitting 90 days a few guys saying 'We Wish you a long slow recovery'  and I remember hating that they said that.

I had thoughts like 'can't you see how good I'm doing?' I thought I was on the accelerated track to recovery.

I know and very grateful that I wasn't on a fast or slow track at all, but my own track.  Sometimes I got things quickly & others I've had to learn slowly or again & again

I now get the idea of a long slow recovery and I wouldn't have it any other way. I get to work on patience. The other thing I realize, though not new wisdom is that nothing ever worth it is gotten quickly because that work, dedication and heart that goes into pursuing something is what makes it worthwhile in the end.

I try to remember this in recovery, in relationships and in pursuing my dreams.  All in his time, not mine - just keep working.  Slow & steady

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Make Our Garden Grow

I loved the Daily Reflection this morning:

It works - it really does

So Simple.  A great reminder that all I need to know is that simple fact.  I don't have to get wrapped up in the HOW & the WHY.  I just have to trust that it does.

when I doubt, all I have to do is look around at the garden of drunks around me who are all growing & basking in the sun to realize that I am too.  trust + faith = growth.