No banking on Robin’s Computer
I feed wild finches and over the last month or so I’ve been watching them die little by little.
I’ve been grieving over the deaths of my beautiful birds and, though I feed them in trays on the ground, there’s dog shit around the area. Yesterday I realized that it’s probably been the dog shit that’s been killing them. They’ve had to tramp around in dog shit. I wept and screamed about it all the way home from a meeting I was at. When I got home I promptly picked up all their dishes in a tub so as not to spill any of the seed on the ground; brought them all in the house; washed them and put them outside on the other side of the yard where the dogs don’t shit. But it’s pretty much too late for the birds. Most of them are already dead. I’m so so so sad. It really really hurts.
I used to be very suicidal and this sort of thing could have very well been the catalyst to push me over the edge. It put me in that amount of grief. But today I’m no longer that way. I’m no longer on the suicidal merry-go-round. How did I get off that machine? I’m a suicidaholic and I don’t attempt suicide one day at a time… no matter what. With that attitude I’ve been forced to get better – or else suffer in great, great agony from my own torturous thoughts.
Since I didn’t try to take my life over this, here’s what happened next.
I talked to my friend Kathy about it and she said that she had a book on grieving pet loss now which she’s just starting to get into counselling about. She gave me a copy of the book to read and we’re going to get together to work on this. God has my back – as usual.
He’s coming through for me. He loves me and is taking care of my pain.
Thank you Pops.
(and God said)
I will restore to you the years the locusts have eaten.
I’ve had it hard for many years of my life but for a while now, actually since a couple of years after I put the suicide down, life’s been good to me for the most part. I have my up’s and down’s as most do but it’s nothing like it used to be.
In the midst of this heart-ache with the birds, today, this is the sort of thing with my friend Kathy that I pay more attention to. God coming through for me in the form of her help.
I want to talk about the ‘torture’ I mentioned above. Ever since childhood I had developed a very bad habit of thinking. I would nurture all the bad aspects of life and pass over all the good. If it was bad it warranted much attention but if it was good it didn’t warrant even a second’s thought. I had a laser focus for nasty.
This business with the birds is an example of how ‘cherishing the good and passing over the bad’ works for me. I don’t ignore the bad. Grief has to be addressed and dealt with until it is healed. But I don’t cherish it or nurse it like I used to. However, learning this new way of thinking was a long slow journey of baby steps from out of the blackness into the light. One small step of ‘cherishing each good thing like it was a rare coin’ at a time. Today, it’s a habit running so deeply in me that it’s become a part of my personality. I am no longer a suicidaholic. Not in the leastest, tiniest, littlest bit. Today, I can easily live life on this planet, not for just weeks, or months, but for decades – ‘for the long haul’.
The first step in this process of becoming suicide-free was, for me, from God giving me the heave hoe about stopping the suicide attempts. He told me “NO MORE!!!” And I knew in my heart that I was not going to be allowed to die no matter how hard I tried. Death was going to be outside my reach until He decided it was time for me to go. I no longer had any say in the matter. But I now believe that you don’t need an act of God to get to this step. Just like you don’t need an act of God to put down the drink. I think that putting down the weapons of suicide is the exact same thing as putting down the drink. It’s done one moment at a time – abstinently. You make it ‘just not an option’ anymore no matter how much you want to imbibe. And with that attitude you have to grow in spite of yourself. Eventually it will become a habit and you will become comfortable not doing it. To get comfortable you will find you are forced to make ‘attitude adjustments’ (as I’ve described above) in order to gain this comfort-ability. But making these attitude adjustments are as hard to do as changing the course of a battleship with a small rudder. It took me a tremendous amount of time and effort to overcome my family of origin message installed in me from when I first learned how to think.
Life is hard and then you die.
Such a simple message you would think. But it was a killer for me.
And God spoke all these words:
“I am the Lord your God,
who brought you out of Egypt, out of the land of slavery.
“You shall have no other gods before me.
It was a very hard row to hoe for me to get sober. Very, very hard. I barely made it. It took everything I had to get and stay sober. Many times I almost lost this precious sobriety I hold so dear. Having alcoholism is horrible. It’s a horrible condition. It stunted my emotional and mental growth because of the way I metabolized it, I can only say this from the inside, I do not know what it’s like to be a non-alcoholic, but this is what I believe as an alcoholic.
I believe that it was my physiological body that was my downfall. I believe I was born with alcoholism. My first drunk was as a four years old when I was told I drained all the left over wine glasses from the Thanksgiving table and came into the living room drunk out of my gourd. Everyone laughed. They thought it was so funny.
I believe that, as an alcoholic, the way I metabolize booze in my body is unique. For me this is also true of sugar and white flour. It helped me sidestep the stresses that were necessary for my emotional growth from a child into an adult by removing these stresses from my body and mind, making them ‘disappear’ and putting me into instant la-la-land. Every time I drank it this effect happened instantly, so naturally I drank it as often as I could get my hands on it. When I wasn’t drinking it I was eating sugar/white flour. After all, who wants stress when you can get instant relief from it? Therefore on the outside I was physically growing up but on the inside I was staying a mentally and emotionally stunted child. I became what to all intensive purposes was a circus freak. A child mind in a grown-up body. Suddenly I found myself thrust into a grown-up world. And, here I was, face to face with the harsh realities of a grown-up world for which, as a stunted child, I was totally unprepared to cope.
This world of gown-ups demanded that I produce like a grown-up. No one could see me for the child I was inside. Meanwhile the way my body metabolized the booze was such that it continued to take the stress off of all this mess and to help me ‘feel better’ (de-stress) in regards to what was happening around me. More and more, the stresses kept piling up. First there was the day-to-day stresses that I’d evaded learning how to cope with but that wouldn’t go away no matter how hard I tried to evade them. Then there were the past stresses of the messes I’d created from my lack of coping skills and exacerbated by drunkenness. Then there were the future stresses that scared me half-to-death because the booze (sugar/white flour) had kept me from learning how to handle ‘future thinking’. On top of that there was the pain from childhood abuse that I was never able to properly process because the booze kept me from doing that correctly. All I could do with that was cry drunken tears for myself. And drunken tears never help process pain. Everyone I knew was either mad at me or didn’t want me around because I’d never learned out how to cope with people or with life. I knew I was a total failure at all of it and my self worth was in the gutter.
Meanwhile there was always the booze. Ahhhh the booze, and it’s allure.
I couldn’t stay away from it’s allure. I knew it would take all this horrible stress off my shoulders. It was so easy. It kept pressuring me;
“I will help you. I will help you. I will make you feel better and get you away from all this mess. Come to me and I can make it all go away for you…..”
But it’s promises always came up empty. The next morning reality would come back with a vengeance. More problems to deal with… even more stress to cope with. But then, after the waters calmed down there it was again, calling… always calling, pressuring me…. “I will help you…” Then I had to sober up to face hard, hard, reality again. Even the booze itself — my friend — played an evil part in adding to all the stress. Every time I ‘came to’ there it was… REALITY… right in my face again. Each time it became worse… and worse. More and more horrible. But then there was the booze again. The alluring booze that kept fooling me into thinking it was going to take the stress away but only added to it. Calling me. Pressuring me. Telling me this time it would really work! A merry-go-round of the macabre.
And it all started because of the way my body metabolized booze. It’s physiological and it’s horrible. I don’t think non-alcoholics metabolize booze the way alcoholics do. It doesn’t give them instant relief. I think they still must face life stress and grow up the way they’re supposed to grow up even if they drink alcohol or eat sugar/white flour during the process. I don’t think reality disappears when they drink booze or eat sugar/white flour the way it did when I drank or ate it. So they grow up and learn how to cope with life the way grown-ups are supposed to do.
When I got sober I had to learn life’s in’s-and-out’s and go through the whirling and stressful growing pains that children must endure to become normal adults while, at the same time, being a physical adult, I had to keep up with what life required of me in a grown-up world. It’s hard to go through growing pains as a youth but it’s murderous to have to do it in an old grown body. And even, 36 years later, it still is some times. Now I mostly don’t eat sugar or white flour and must grow up even more during that process.
This is not to excuse alcoholics for their behavior. It’s just a description of what it was like for me as one.
To my dear sober AA friend,
(excerpts from a letter I wrote to my friend Stewart)
While I was on vacation I had the opportunity to spend a lot of time sitting on the sand dunes where I read and did some writing. The writing started to pick up faster and faster until I was going at it at a furious pace. I was thoroughly enjoying myself. I gathered together in words some of the things I’ve come across in my sober journey. In 30 years a lot of stuff’s come across my desk but most of it just whirls around in my head – there’s been no solidity. So I decided to try to create a holding place for some of this stuff. To get it more clear in my own mind and to share via paper with others if they care to know. This way I won’t be cornering them but at the same time get a small sense that I’m contributing.
So my friend and I had a big fight and my head is reeling from it. I don’t do ‘friends’ with people and, to tell you the truth, in 60 years this is the first real friend who I’m starting to try to be real with in my life. That’s how much abuse I’ve had to deal with. I’ve been real with my husband but then we’re like two ships passing in the night with each other. There’s very little of anything between us and, to tell the truth, it’s been that way since we got married. Almost right away, he changed after we got married, but that’s another tale to tell for another time.
So my friend and I had a big big falling out and I just wanted to write about it and maybe get some advice from anyone out there who has had some friendship experience along with dealing with child abuse issues of their own.
My friend and I met in Al-Anon. She’s also an alcoholic like me with a lot of years sober. Before I go into what our problems are, I want to say that we have a lot in common and that there is a basis for some good connection between us. We are ‘reading buddies’ in that we read and study together. She likes to learn new things as much as I do which is rare these days. We just finished reading a book on western philosophy and now are tackling one on eastern philosophy. After this were going to go to work on doing a little physics. We both have no children for the same reasons and we both come from very abusive backgrounds. There is more between us too but that’s enough to say right now.
But I’m a ‘fawner/freezer’ and she’s a ‘fighter’ type in our responses to our abuse and to life’s realities in general. I hide (freeze) and people-please (fawn) while she just plain gets mad and yells for all she’s worth. This kind of makes me scared of her. I’m already scared to confront people and her fighting me makes it even scarier. One time I mentioned that she never hardly picked up the phone when I called and I always had to leave messages (which was true). She went ballistic. Told me it wasn’t true. How could it not be true? I’m the one who should know, after all I was the one leaving all the messages. But she fought me and I backed down. Eventually she decided it was because she was on the phone with other people and that’s why she didn’t answer it. It wasn’t the truth but I let it go, I wasn’t going to fight with her.
About the actual fight. It was more my fault – I think (but actually I have no idea since I’ve so confused by the whole thing). While we were reading our book, we got into a discussion about where babies come from. I said they essentially came from dirt. That plants grow from dirt, the mother eats the plants and grows the baby from the plants she eats. My friend went ballistic. She said that babies come from God. I said “No, they come from…” and re-iterated my point thinking that it was so obvious. Suddenly she said “I think you should go. I’m not going to be abused.” So she kicked me out of her house. I think I was being more dogmatic than I realized at the time. When I got home I called her and managed to get her to pick up the phone with a little coaxing on her message machine. We went around and around but I eventually saw that I was probably ‘channeling’ my father with his dogmatic attitude on her and that that wasn’t very nice. If she wanted to believe that babies came from God then that was her prerogative to believe that way and it wasn’t for me to ‘straighten her out’ like my father did to me.
But our relationship is progressing and I’m finding out that it’s getting more and more impossible for me to be as ‘nice’ as I’ve been when some of the things she does irritates me. Now she knows that I’m not her ‘perfect’ friend that she says she ‘loves’. The truth is that she doesn’t even know me so how can she love me? And she doesn’t seem to be interested in finding out who I am either. We share our ‘history’ with each other but it’s not really ‘with each other’, it’s more that she shares and I listen (I’m a fawner and fawners are good listeners). I hate when someone says they love you but are not interested in finding out who the person is that they say they love.
So I have this friend who I very much like to hang out with (I don’t love her – that word is sacred to me). But who is a fighter and not that interested in finding out who I am but likes the ‘perfect friend’ who is me.
What do you think? I’d be very interested in some advice.
I’m reading a very good book by Peter Walker called “C-PTSD From Surviving to Thriving“. (C-PTSD – Complex Post Traumatic Stress Disorder from childhood abuse). A couple of friends from Al-Anon told me about it and I finally picked it up and am reading it. Fascinating and horrifying at the same time. To put it mildly, it’s hot. He uses words like ‘miserable’, ‘tormenting’, ‘having little use for (a child)’, ‘routinely ridiculed’, ‘minimal nurturing’, ‘dangerous’, ‘bitter’, ‘sarcastic’, ‘parental betrayal’, etc. This man knows about C-PTSD from personal experience and 30 years of working with victims of this condition. The book also contains a lot of ‘solution’, not just description of the ‘problem’ like so many self-help books do.
I copied this from a the website: HERE. (It comes with a neat video too). I stumbled onto this myself a while ago and it really does work. Please copy and spread it around if you will. If we all get together and do it, it could really make a difference with road rage.
Don’t try this in the fast lane. For some reason it makes drivers crazy when you try to do this in the fast lane. He was doing it in the fast lane in the video but I think that was only because it was an exit lane.
AND A CURE FOR WAVES & JAMS
1998 William Beaty Electrical Engineer
My first ‘experiment’: accidentally erasing traffic waves!
I’ve been free of flour/sugar products for over two years and cigarettes for over one and a half years and I haven’t lost any weight at all. It’s been very discouraging to say the least but I think the tide is finally turning regarding the weight. I think God finally had enough of my wining and stepped in to give me a little advice.
I had a spiritual experience a couple of weeks ago about losing this weight. It went something like this.
God: You know how to lose this weight dear.
God: You know how.
Me: No I don’t.
God: Yes you do. You’ve done it two times before the in exact same way with complete success.
Twenty minutes a day.
God: One time just before you moved to Santa Cruz. And one time while you were in Weight Watchers. It worked like a charm back then and there’s no reason why it won’t work again this time. So… if you really do want to lose this weight… why don’t you…
Get back on the ball.
Well I’ve been doing cardio-exercise (which is what I did before) on the elliptical machine twenty minutes a day since then.
I know I will lose the weight this way. God is right. If I want to lose the weight, I have to exercise. I’ve experienced losing the weight this way two times before. I really do want to lose the weight. Enough so that I don’t have any resentment about doing the exercise anymore. I used to have a big resentment at doing even ten minutes. I’ve always talked myself into this resentment by wining things like…
How come I have to exercise
to lose weight and
everyone else doesn’t.
But when God talked to me that day, I knew instantly what a load of crap that was. He put on my heart the reality that just about everyone who has a slim figure has to exercise… the same as I would if I wanted a slim figure too. Suddenly, doing twenty minutes a day on the elliptical is a piece of cake. Not only did He give me the information I needed to loose the weight, but He took all my resentment about doing the exercise, away too!
My baptism was ‘not that great’ as it turned out. This is an understatement. Here’s what happened.
I became a Christian in my bedroom, alone, by accident, at 27 years old. The story of my conversion is HERE. Then I was a ‘closet Christian’ for three years before I got with a church. After that, it took another year or so before I got the guts to come forward and ask to be baptized. I knew about baptizim, and I knew you were supposed to get baptized after you became a Christian, right? It’s just something that Christians were supposed to do. You get baptized to declare to the world that you now follow Christ. I had no problem with that. I knew I belonged to Jesus and to God and that I owed my very life to Him.
Life is like a fast moving river filled with spinning logs. We spend our lives frantically leaping from spinning log to spinning log trying to stay afloat. Mentally, emotionally, physically, we leap.. and leap… and leap. But God lives in the calmly moving depths of the water between the spinning logs. How did I connect to Him there in the depths? How did I stop frantically leaping from spinning log to spinning log to get to Him? The answer… one time I stopped leaping. It sounds impossible but one time I sat down on a log and gazed into the water to look for Him… and I found Him there and saw Him return my gaze. It was marvelous. The spinning logs be damned, this is where I finally found peace. I stopped the constant leaping from log to log, and as I sat down on the log I found that it stopped spinning. I sat down for a time and gazed into the water, and He helped me with the constant spinning. And all I did was just sit down.
It was a dark and stormy night….
No… really… It was a dark and stormy night. I was six years sober at the time. SIX YEARS SOBER AND I STILL HAD THE OBSESSION TO DRINK! YIKES!
Don’t ask my how I could have pulled that off. How can a drunk, who is drooling for a drink, not drink… for six years. Fear. That’s all I can say. Plain fear. Unadulterated fear. I’d had a vision of my life if I’d continued down the drinking path, and it wasn’t pretty. It was a horror movie. God showed me my future in living color six years before that, and I couldn’t deny the truth of that future if I continued to drink the way I was doing. And I couldn’t stop the drinking the way I was doing it. So I dragged myself to A.A. and they got me sober.
Once upon a time there was a train. On this train were many passengers coming and going about their business. Some were reading their newspapers; some where furtively ‘people watching’; some where just looking out the windows at the scenery passing by.
Then a man got on the train. A man with his three little kids.
Among many, many ‘two groups of people’, this is one type….
Smokers & Non-Smokers.
The idea is to jump, for all your worth, from the one group (Smokers) into the other group (Non-Smokers). You need to do this deeply so that both feet are firmly planted into the Non-Smoking group of people.
And never look back again.
As you can already tell… when I wrote the post “What is it with you people?!!!“ I was in quite a snit. Let me explain.
Like innocent animals who would never hurt a flea, children are close to my heart. They have no rights of their own and can hurt no one. But we hurt them plenty without thinking a thing about it. We want to give birth to them when we want. We use them to gratify us and many times we don’t think that what we are doing by creating them is doing them a great injustice. They are born to go on to suffer lives of desperation and that’s just not fair to them. They grow up to become adults. They grow up to become painful… us.
Now-a-days it seems like almost everyone is
having children with the plan to
“Play Parent” for a couple of weeks;
then go right back to work again, shipping their
new born infants off to some cold, uncaring
What is it with you people?!!
No wonder our youngsters are getting
more and more demented every year.
Children need loving PARENTS to grow up
straight and true!
So what’s the matter with you??!!!
You say; “I can’t afford not to work.”
Well, if you can’t afford not to work,
then what the hell are you having children for
in the first place if you can’t afford them??!!!
When I am quiet in the morning
I imagine the love of God
He is the Father
He wears a long heavy cloak
He draws me to Him
~ gently ~
~ slowly ~
~ tenderly ~
~ sweetly ~
He enfolds me into His heavy cloak
I lay myself against His chest
I am ~me~ I am accepted
I am ~me~ I am encouraged
I am ~me~ I am warm
I am ~me~ I am safe
This is my Father’s love for me
I can stay here for hours.
Talking with Him.
I never want to leave this place.
God written / channeled through Anonymousonetoo
I’ve been exercising on the elliptical for a month now. Twice a day for a total of an hour a day – and I can’t get enough of it.
(to read about how this started see this post: HERE)
I was thinking about ways one tries to numb one’s emotions and how one ‘pays the bill’ for the different ways to numb.
Well I’ve been free of flour/sugar products for 1½ years and cigarettes for 1 year and I haven’t lost any weight at all. It’s been very discouraging to say the least but I think the tide is finally turning regarding the weight.
Suddenly I find I can meditate! I’m doing it for an hour a day with almost no trouble at all. AA’s Step 11 (Sought through Prayer and Meditation to improve our conscious contact with God as we understood him) was absolutely impossible for me. It used to be, even at 34 years sober, that I couldn’t sit quietly for even a couple of minutes. The goolie and goblins would get me. Those goolies called:
You’re nothing but a piece of shit! You ought to be ashamed of yourself! No body wants you let alone loves you! Why don’t you just go away and die! (etc, etc, etc.)
abstinence, Addictions, alcoholism, C-PTSD, child abuse, christianity, complex ptsd, God, inspiration, Mental health, mental illness, peace, post traumatic stress disorder, PTSD, relationship, spirituality, trauma
This is a copy of a post I wrote about six months ago –
Yet now I am feeling this way on a long term basis not just for a day like I was here.
(the first post in this series is here: On Being a Social Outcast )
* * *
Here is a list of things I no longer practice:
Things I No Longer Practice
* * *
This ride of ‘no addictions or obsessions’ has suddenly transformed itself. Up until now, I’ve been careening at break-neck speed, through the pitch blackness, on a hairy, frightening, roller coaster; being tossed around like a rag-doll, completely out of emotional control. But suddenly, an abrupt change has occurred. Suddenly I’m finding myself in a place of absolute quiet stillness. It feels like I’m riding on a smooth white platform that’s silently and swiftly skimming across the surface of a pale blue, sparkling, glassy sea.
When God first made man… Genesis 1:26 …
Let us make man-kind
in our image.
God told Noah (even after the fall)… Genesis 9:6 …
For men are made
in God’s own image.
It is my belief that the above passages infer that every person (and not just Christians I might add) on planet earth carries a piece of our holy creator within themselves. From the president of the United States to the people who call the streets their home… everyone carries a piece of the Holy God… an image of Him… inside their persons (however, those who heed God’s call to Jesus the saving Christ, have a soul redeeming relationship).
Something very interesting happened tonight that I thought you would like to hear about. I’m taking training to be on the Crisis Call Center hotline. This evening we did role playing with the trainers for the first time in the training. Well I did a pretty piss-poor job of it and the feed-back I got from the others showed that too. This would have been a perfect ‘set up’ for me to rail against myself you think, wouldn’t it? This would have been the perfect situation for the ‘ugly voices’ to have come at me – enforce.
(this may seem hard to do at first but we caught on and I’m as impatient as a 30 second french fry in a fry cooker and my husband is as dense as a raw potato)
CAUTION: This is really, really, really important!! You must read through this entire article… first… maybe several times, in ordered to be fully mentally and emotionally prepared to do this exercise.
The thing is… Fights in a relationship create Fire… and fire has massive power behind it to destroy. You must realize that this is what you are dealing with when you fight. FIRE!! And like with any fire, when you’re handling it, utmost caution must be taken to keep it contained and under control so that it doesn’t incinerate you or your relationship.
* * *
(an e-mail I sent to my pastor in response to the sermon he gave today. Regarding something he talked about that made me think on the word – compassion.)
* * *
I want to say more about the word “love”. I just don’t care much for that word. It’s been bandied about too much. Like an old wad of crumpled duct tape. It’s kind of useless anymore.
I love potato chips (?)
I mean. Come on!
But – compassion….
What if you’re a Christian… and you have Attachment Disorder… what do you do… with God?
I’ve been in Alcoholics Anonymous a very very long time and I have a lot of time without alcohol. I’ve tried to follow the ‘program’ for all I’ve been worth but have been a miserable failure at it. The only thing I’ve managed to do… by hook and by crook…sometimes by the skin of my teeth… is to not drink.
Until a person recovers from the shock of being physically traumatized, they have absolutely no capacity to either give or receive love. The trauma forces all their faculties to focus inward to deal with the trauma and so they can not be reached. I believe this same understanding can be applied to the shock of psychological trauma as well. All the faculties are focused inward trying to deal with the trauma. This is what I know from my own experience anyway.
More on the ‘no addictions’ journey…
Well I’ve tried the ‘self-soothing’ thing many times before, and for many years. People have told me of it’s importance more than a few times in my life. But it never really took. Not really. I wanted to do it. It sounded like a great idea. But I only was able to do it by rote – robotic like. Needless to say, it didn’t help anything.
As I continue to stumble onward along this ‘no addiction’ journey…
Let Us make man-kind in Our Image.
(It says: “All Mankind” – not just Christians)
When I was made, God placed in me a piece of Himself. A ‘fragment’ of Himself if you will. Then He went along His way doing what He does. Creating things and such.
This is a continuation of a previous post: HERE
I woke up very early this morning. Dread from the trauma memory weighed heavy on my heart. “What to do with all this new information? How am going to get out from under all this trauma as an infant? How am I going to deal with this? How?”