Let us always love the best in others—
and never fear their worst.
~ Bill Wilson ~
August 24, 2020 ~ To say it’s been a “long strange trip” would be euphemism for “how the hell did I get here?” The world as we knew it may be on fire with actual fires as the glaciers melt way too fast, while pretty much every social norm we’ve known has been called into question due to a global pandemic — with a side order of WTF here in the US with our mad political scene.
Seriously. Some folks might see this as a bleak backdrop, and perhaps it is, but honestly, my life has never been better. Yes, this is a privilege not everyone has shared. I’m aware of just how fortunate I am, and gratitude is a daily thing as I try to share what we have with those who are hurting.
Since the last time I wrote in this occasionally annually updated post, Wayne and I have stumbled upon and purchased our dream home — complete with an AMAZING recording studio. We’ve always thought we would retire in New England and run a small hobby farm with chickens and goats… We didn’t think it would be here in NJ or so soon or have a rockin’ (literally) business in the back yard!
Way back when this sobriety thing all started, all those old-timers (who had like 5 years and were 30 years old) told me that if I stayed sober, my life would turn out far better than I could ever imagine. I was skeptical because I have a colorful imagination and was very greedy at the time.
Fast forward 30-something years and wow! They were right! I’m living a dream I didn’t even know I had. HP (God, Universe, whatever) always knows better and I have spent years surrendering to this fact — many scars to prove it!
Those that know me, know I’ve had chicken envy for many years. Not sure why. They are odd birds, but I love them. I spoil them and they respond with a bounty of fresh eggs and constant entertainment. Who knew chickens would be so fun? Next year goats… stay tuned!
August 24, 2017 ~ I woke up and a friend, who I haven’t seen in over 30 years remembered (before I did) that it was my AA anniversary — Thank you Craig! I have had a habit of re-reading this post on my anniversary since I wrote it 3 years ago. It still holds up pretty well. I don’t endeavor to edit it, but thought I’d write a brief update.
Having just survived a big move, I’m sitting here in my new home on a pond, near a lake surrounded by big wise trees, with the windows all open, listening to the breeze and the birds. Yea, I’m grateful all right. Much like sobriety, it came on the heels of a great effort that started months ago — one box at a time. I recall sitting there thinking, “how will this all get done?” Feeling overwhelmed by the sheer magnitude of our mountain of “stuff.”
As if on auto-pilot, I pulled myself to the present tasks at hand and literally almost repeated to myself out loud like a mantra, “one box at a time, one box at a time, one box at a time.” And on our moving day, my husband turned to me and said, “Meg, we have way too much crap!” Which after doing almost all the packing and trying to inform him of this fact for 3 months was ironic… As I was ruthlessly purging each room of items to giveaway or throw away, my poor husband would pick through the piles and find a memory and a reason to keep almost each thing.
But now, we have a complete inventory of our lives and the things that seem to make it up. Having rid ourselves of a great deal, it feels good to wander through our new space admiring the things we kept, the things we love, the things that we have dragged through these many moves.
Perhaps sobriety, recovery, maturing (?) is a lot like this moving process — I hope to have gotten rid of old notions, habits, resentments, etc. and in the process have gotten to know this person I am, this person I am becoming still, cherishing the things about me that remain. One day at a time, one box at a time, one dream at a time…
Please read and enjoy my musings from a couple of years ago.
25 years ago today, I picked myself from the fetal-position heap I was in on the middle of my bed and made a decision not to kill myself. Or maybe it was the fleas that made me move. Whatever it was that propelled me, I moved from that spot and drove myself to a “meeting,” where I suspected there would be no fleas and knew my friends Carol and Alvin would be. They were annoying, those two. They kept coming around and lurking quietly and asking questions like, “are you done yet?” They always seemed to appear when I was experiencing a dreadful hangover. How did they bloody always seem to know?! Perhaps it was because if I wasn’t drunk, I was experiencing a dreadful hangover. Duh. In hindsight it is painfully obvious, but at the time, I thought that despite being irritating, they were kind of brilliant.
I went to that first meeting imagining my life at 26 years old was over. No more “fun” times. No more excitement. I LOL’d as I wrote that because as I know now, there was NO FUN for me the way I was destroying myself with drugs and alcohol for many years in my then short life. I shuffled in the door breathless, dead inside, surrendering to whatever penance I would have to endure because it was that or I would have to sprout a pair of balls and figure out how to kill myself. It was all over for me either way. Little did I know it was the beginning of a sparkling, fabulous, crazy, twisted adventure — my first wobbly steps on the journey of recovery, also known as the foreign concept called sobriety.
So, wasn’t I stunned to see all these cheery faces greeting me and hugging me. WTF!? How can you people be so f’ing happy about this? Doesn’t your life suck without drugs and alcohol? Carol and Alvin were there, and to my shock and horror, so were quite a few other folks I knew. I was a bartender at a popular local joint and I saw some faces I hadn’t seen hanging around the bar lately. Hmmmm. Moment of panic when I considered there was some kind of conspiracy. ha ha ha . . . [keep reading, click on next page below]