The Seduction of Sobriety

August 20

 

 

 

THE SEDUCTION OF SOBRIETY

 

 

I was seduced away from my duties as an alcoholic by the promise of sobriety.  Allegiance to my disease was sidelined.  Alluring stability and beguiling integrity curried favor with my desperate heart, pulling me from the arranged marriage of addiction.  How could I cling to the corpse of dependence when sanity shimmered just out of reach, then not out of reach but within my grasp?  I couldn’t resist the golden flicker of life.  I had been bound to death, unable to see an alternative. My loyalty to loss and grief slipped from me and I limped into the daylight like the widow of the night.  I have been lured to my senses by a love like no other, the love of life.

 

 

 

Raise the ceiling on optimism.

*

 

 

Blind Man’s Bluff

 

Turning your head to see

doesn’t help when you have a blind eye.

All the rotation in the world won’t restore your sight.

 

Addressing life problems with a solution

involving spin is counter productive

and sometimes counter clockwise to boot.

 

If I find I just can’t see, then maybe

it’s time to listen better and compensate

for my shortcoming through some other action.

 

Turning away doesn’t help and walking away is worse.

When I am blind in one eye and can’t see out of the other

stepping up to the plate may not be an option,

but I still need to find a way to stay in the game.

 

 

You are reading selections from Sober on the Way to Sane and More Lines From My Life by Sherrie Theriault

http://www.amazon.com/Sober-On-The-Way-Sane/dp/1440417342/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1388576888&sr=8-1&keywords=sober+on+the+way+to+sane

http://www.amazon.com/More-Lines-From-My-Life/dp/1448677203/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1388576956&sr=8-1&keywords=More+Lines+From+My+Life

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Comfort & Willingness

August 19

 

COMFORT AND WILLINGNESS

 

 

 

Closer than comfort is willingness.  Comfort is at the skin but willingness is under it. I can live without comfort but not without willingness.  Both are unseen but felt deeply.  Willingness drives to the destination and comfort settles me in once there.  Comfort is a gift like warmth; willingness is a gift like breath.  I have been tempted to let go of willingness to hold on to comfort.  True willingness brings true comfort; never the other way around.  No matter where I have to go, willingness will take me there; I hope comfort will follow.

 

 

Draw satisfaction on the wall of your brain.

*

 

Go Where it’s Warm

 

The intangible rightness of cohesion is difficult to explain.

What is it that makes a group congregating into a congregation?

What makes a rag tag tousle into a home group?

 

It is the thing I yearn for, but dare not chase.

I know this too makes a grub into a butterfly,

yet private transformation seems necessary,

where the change of masses is gratuitous.

 

A thousand geese fly overhead;

arrows of individual miracles,

pointing the way to the meaning of it all.

 

 

 

You are reading selections from Sober on the Way to Sane and More Lines From My Life by Sherrie Theriault

http://www.amazon.com/Sober-On-The-Way-Sane/dp/1440417342/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1388576888&sr=8-1&keywords=sober+on+the+way+to+sane

http://www.amazon.com/More-Lines-From-My-Life/dp/1448677203/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1388576956&sr=8-1&keywords=More+Lines+From+My+Life

Posted in 12 step recovery, Affirmation, Alcoholics Anonymous, comfort, Hope, Humor, Poetry, willingness, Wisdom | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Don’t Be

August 18

 

DON’T BE

 

 

Don’t be stupid.

Don’t be crazy.

Don’t be anything out of the ordinary.

Don’t be angry.

Don’t be hateful.

Just don’t be that way.

Don’t be sad.

Don’t be mopey.

Smile for the camera.

And pretend for everyone.

I wondered often why I felt like dying and it took me years to understand why.

Don’t be equals death.

Don’t feel.

Don’t cry.

Don’t love.

Life is about action, presence and content.  You’re wrong if you break the rules and dead if you keep them.  So, please be you and don’t be them.  Look back when you have to but step out of the grave.

 

 

 

Learn followership too.

*

 

 

 

Single Serving Sterling

 

 

When the menu of life feels vast

I must focus on my teaspoon;

a simple tool that fits well in my hand,

whose use I well understand.

 

The possibilities conceived

when I ponder the intangibles

conspire to suck me down the rabbit-hole

where all that’s left to me is a drug.

 

When I come back to stir my tea

and lick the spoon clean

the world revolves around me

and without need of my completed unified theory.

 

Need looms, loss stacks,

salvation keeps a steady distance,

my only hope is to drink my tea,

I shan’t even sharpen my spoon;

 

I can and need to stay out of my fear built prison

and off the streets of hell.

My task is at hand and the size of the scoop

is a reminder to take all of life in small doses.

 

 

You are reading selections from Sober on the Way to Sane and More Lines From My Life by Sherrie Theriault

http://www.amazon.com/Sober-On-The-Way-Sane/dp/1440417342/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1388576888&sr=8-1&keywords=sober+on+the+way+to+sane

http://www.amazon.com/More-Lines-From-My-Life/dp/1448677203/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1388576956&sr=8-1&keywords=More+Lines+From+My+Life

Posted in Alcoholics Anonymous, 12 step recovery, Humor, Poetry, Don't Be, teaspoon | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

In the Prairie

August 17

 

 

 

IN THE PRAIRIE

 

 

In the prairie, there are small fenced cemeteries, family plots.  The flat expanse of land opens to the eye; hand carved monuments stand in testimony to love and service.  In these places grow the wild flowers… bluebells, paintbrush, lupines, and all manner of reedy grasses… these places cordoned off from mechanization and  Agra-business.  Held in trust are the bones of loved ones and the soul of nature.  Deep inside me is a place like this.  The place I have buried my young—the little ones who died of shame, neglect, and hurt.  And I must return, not to exhume the dead, but to pay tribute.  To return with honor and love, harvest the daisies and buttercups, grow them in the garden of my heart.  I can tend the flowers that spring from destruction.  I can mingle them with the growth of my sober life; restore my prairie to a splendor it has never known.  I can enjoy the bounty of saving the seeds worth saving, and planting my Higher Power’s will for me.

 

 

 

Make a list of decoys.

*

 

 

 

Endlessly Moving Maps

 

 

I try to survive by memorizing the chaos.

I do well up to five layers deep

and then lose it, as the details become too great.

 

I am staking my life on my ability to track the patterns

in a storm while at the same time treading water.

I think this skill kept life and breathe in me for many years.

 

Now I fear I’ll drown in this roiling mass.

I must touch down my tender toes

and learn to walk this twisting path

and keep a pace with this spinning world.

 

Everything moves and I am overwhelmed.

I have forgotten my flesh and blood nature;

have mistaken myself for a stone, one which dare not roll,

one which has no part in this endlessly moving map.

 

 

You are reading selections from Sober on the Way to Sane and More Lines From My Life by Sherrie Theriault

http://www.amazon.com/Sober-On-The-Way-Sane/dp/1440417342/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1388576888&sr=8-1&keywords=sober+on+the+way+to+sane

http://www.amazon.com/More-Lines-From-My-Life/dp/1448677203/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1388576956&sr=8-1&keywords=More+Lines+From+My+Life

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I Am

August 16

 

I AM

 

 

I am my own hope.

The spring of willingness flows within me and makes everything possible.

 

I am my own dream.

Colors and sprinkles fly in my mind and mix with a sprite’s laugh and make me enchanted.

 

I am my own joy.

Filled with wonder and delight, my quick turns and ready mind warm my heart and pink my cheeks.

 

I am my own prize.

New and exciting, every day that I am myself,

I win.

 

 

 

 

Pith is dry and dead, be marrow.

*

 

 

 

 

Dewy, Cheatum & Howe

 

 

I must radically sever the close connection I have

with self-seeking, self-pity and dishonesty.

What will I use to pay the retainer

for the representation I will need to pursue this divorce?

 

Willingness is the earnest money,

which will start the ball rolling,

hard work pitches in its share

and faith pays the note each day I apply it.

 

All this and more is what it takes to divide

the endless stream of my compulsive thought

into a survivable day’s worth of life.

 

I have the prospect of being happy as a divorcee

or I could be a miserable widow

if I stay wed to my disease.

 

 

 

You are reading selections from Sober on the Way to Sane and More Lines From My Life by Sherrie Theriault

http://www.amazon.com/Sober-On-The-Way-Sane/dp/1440417342/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1388576888&sr=8-1&keywords=sober+on+the+way+to+sane

http://www.amazon.com/More-Lines-From-My-Life/dp/1448677203/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1388576956&sr=8-1&keywords=More+Lines+From+My+Life

Posted in 12 step recovery, Affirmation, Alcoholics Anonymous, Hope, Humor, Poetry, Sponsorship, Wisdom | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Things Which Are Thicker Than Water

August 15

 

THINGS WHICH ARE THICKER THAN WATER

 

“Pudding, mud, ice cream, cement, sauce, paint, sap, drool, gravy, wood.”

“What is that?”  I ask my sponsor.

“A list of things thicker than water.  There are so many; why do people get so hung up on blood?”  responds my sponsor.

“Survival?  Or maybe comfort?  Tradition?”  I counter.

“I’m sure you’re right.  I’m sure there are many benign reasons why we strong-arm one another into relationships with family we may or may not be ready for.”

“You mean the families we drank with?”

“Or sometimes drank to get away from.  But it’s not the family; it’s us.  We have to learn to do what we need to do.  We can’t force ourselves into relations with anyone for any reason other than it’s what is best for our sobriety.  Shoulds and oughts have no place in the family situation.”

“So I can just walk away from them one and all?”

“You can’t do anything in that sweep of the wand.  In the same vein, don’t obligate yourself to people due to viscosity.”

“Got ya.  There has to be a real choice made.”

“Sounds like a promising start.”

 

Have what you want unless all you want is MORE.

 

*

 

 

The Dark Fantastic

 

 

When the tornado touches down worry ends;

the anticipation is over and thought stops.

Tragedy is funny that way.

 

In the aftermath I find out what mattered

and what didn’t;

whether I have helped or injured myself

trying to plan for the worst.

 

I fail to realize there are cloud filled days

when nothing happens

and days when trouble comes from out of the blue.

 

What matters ultimately is if I was happy yesterday

all the way into today until the thunder struck.

Greed is not: living for today;

greed is my attempt at gathering the future

while dragging the past.

 

 

 

You are reading selections from Sober on the Way to Sane and More Lines From My Life by Sherrie Theriault

http://www.amazon.com/Sober-On-The-Way-Sane/dp/1440417342/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1388576888&sr=8-1&keywords=sober+on+the+way+to+sane

http://www.amazon.com/More-Lines-From-My-Life/dp/1448677203/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1388576956&sr=8-1&keywords=More+Lines+From+My+Life

Posted in 12 step recovery, Alcoholics Anonymous, Family, Family Dysfunction, Family Ties, Hope, Humor, Poetry, Sponsorship, The Dark Fantastic, The Family Plot, Wisdom | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Never Let Go

August 14

 

NEVER LET GO

 

 

When it grows dark on one side of a transparency the other becomes reflective.  When addiction doesn’t hold a flame for me, I see the true face of its results.  Because I know now the destructive possibilities, I must print the picture and post it on the wall, for the day may come when addiction appears as a light for me and the mirror will be gone.  I need to keep clear the truth even when my eyes lie to me and my sensibilities catch on fire.  The glass can be the boundary or the tumbler.  The glare of day can be harsh or bright.  Light is forever shifting.  I cannot count on shadows for predictions.  I must know it when I see it, chant it to remember and hold hands and never let go.

 

 

Sort advice like laundry.

*

 

 

Participant Observer

 

Underneath it all I am more than naked;

I am hidden by exposure.

My body can never be as nude

as life with you in my thoughts.

 

My mind is a polygraph you wander through.

I have determined this is more than safe

and unlock the closets.

 

You are not my warden looking for contraband,

nor the janitor looking for trash,

you are here, you are my friend.

 

Having a better look around

simply to know me better

and to love me well.

 

Your unfamiliar stride is exciting,

I show off the places I long for you to see

and stand aside from the rest,

it is all yours to look through.

 

I do not resist.

You are my peaceful guardian;

I am your willing charge.

 

 

 

You are reading selections from Sober on the Way to Sane and More Lines From My Life by Sherrie Theriault

http://www.amazon.com/Sober-On-The-Way-Sane/dp/1440417342/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1388576888&sr=8-1&keywords=sober+on+the+way+to+sane

http://www.amazon.com/More-Lines-From-My-Life/dp/1448677203/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1388576956&sr=8-1&keywords=More+Lines+From+My+Life

Posted in 12 step recovery, Alcoholics Anonymous, Hope, Humor, Poetry, Wisdom | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment