All To Thee I Surrender All

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Hi Everyone, 

I am catching up again, because of physical issues it’s been hard to stay up to date. 

Life is often a mixed bag. One is never without struggles and they are also never without many things to be grateful for, at least in my life this is true. 

I am learning to be more of service as a chairman or facilitator of meetings and answering the call when someone asks for help. Maybe it’s just listening to others and getting out of my own head for a while. 

I am having to ask for help from others today and that’s very humbling. 

Things that have always been true but refreshers are always needed are: 

I realize tonight for me, that alcohol and anger really are one in the same for me. Neither serve me very well. I am tired, the anger has worn me down. 

  • We can’t lie and recover. 
  • We can’t hold onto anger and recover. 
  • It doesn’t matter what was done to you. What matters is what you are doing to others and if you are taking responsibility today. 
  • I am willing to be alone today rather than have someone take my joy and peace. 
  • I don’t have the right to judge you today. 
  • We all have choices choose them wisely. 
  • Our greatest message is how we live and not what we say. 
  • Just because we disagree doesn’t mean we can’t come to an understanding. 
  • Tomorrow is not promised to any of us. 
  • What we sow is what we will reap. 
  •  People will fail me at some point and I will them too. That’s a promise. No one’s perfect. 
  •  It’s okay to let go I don’t have to try to control everything. It’s not my job. 

I think back to the church hymns while growing up and I was very young, about 10 years old.  “All to Thee My Blessed Savior, I surrender all. I surrender all, I surrender all!” The minister would ask in the middle of that hymn do you really, people? Do you surrender all? 

Each of us have that same question to answer for ourselves and how we choose, will determine the rest. 

Not only do my decisions affect me today. They affect others as well. Especially, those around me. I am not my own person today. I am a part of a we thing. 

  • I am grateful for help today. 
  • I am grateful for the truth. 
  • I am grateful to be able to surrender. 
  • I am grateful for the opportunity to listen to others today. 
  • I am grateful I can choose today. 
  • I am grateful for the care and the transparency of others. It teaches me to do the same, to the best of my ability. 
  • I am grateful I picked 4pm, it will keep me accountable. 
  • I am grateful I don’t have to make excuses today. 
  • I am grateful I get to stay in contact today and stay connected. 

This has been another blog post entry of Boxcar Mike and I thank you for reading! Over and Out! 

God Bless Y’all Everybody! 

Everyday A Chance To Change My Story

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Good Morning Everyone,

I am a day behind and it’s okay. I will hopefully get caught up with a second posting this afternoon.

This morning I am sitting here drinking my coffee and listening to hymns by Selah and thinking about my morning gathering around the tables. How grateful and wonderfully awesome is the chance for change.

Everyday is the chance to change my story. I am thinking about the strength and hope others have given me, as well as them sharing their experience.

I know I am not sharing much about the book right now. Maybe my experience is just what’s important to share right now.

I have been considering the past few months, how far away I am from the God of my understanding and as I don’t understand Him. Please don’t try to correct me on this because, the God of my understanding tells me there is a mystery I don’t understand.

After all a power greater than me and an all-knowing presence …There has to be more than I understand or can ever comprehend. It’s the God connection that changes my story.

You can get as angry as you want, I am finally surrendering to the fact I can’t ever know all there is to this. I am not shoving it down your throat, this is my experience.

I am not sure I can ever go back to the child understanding of God. Each hymn takes me back to childhood part of me and it also raises inside of me, a belief stronger than I have had in maybe, years.

What? Am I supposed to leave this out of my experience, because it might make others uncomfortable? It’s part of my journey! Whether you realize it or not, all of you are part of my journey and so is every experience.

It’s all still piece-meal for me, accepting truths a little bit at a time.

What I do know is the simple part. Striving to wake up each morning and asking God to direct my thinking that I would not be sucked into self-pity or false pride. Asking for God for protection and care to keep me away from a drink.

I need help doing the next right thing, as well as what I can do for someone else.

Throughout the day asking God to help me pause in difficult times or when I am tempted to be angry saying the prayer to save me from being angry. Yes, there’s a lot I need saved from and it always seems to be, being broken down enough to ask for help.

I cannot do it on my own. By the same token though, no one can do the steps or the foot work for me.

It also means pausing before I speak or do anything. The three questions always to consider is it kind, is it necessary, and is it helpful.

At night remembering to go over my day would be key as well. Making sure I have corrected any wrong along the way. I am a slow learner at this. Then finally saying a prayer of thanks for one more day. The bottom line, if I do my part God can’t help but do His part.

We are now back at the beginning, where we started with the first 100 people. They each woke up each day, having the chance to change their story. Just for today I can do this with God and everyone else.

Thank you for reading! This here’s Boxcar Mike over and out!

God Bless Y’all!

To Thine Own Self Be True Always

Hi Everyone!

Today was a rather busy day. I first had to deal with medical and physical issues the first half of the day. It was one of those mornings where it was hard to get up on time. But I trudged through today.

I still read in my book. However, I feel it more important to share about my day, along the journey. Part of recovery is building friendships and being open to allow the day to unfold as it will. The friendship and fellowship are all part of staying connected.

I was so blessed today in a few ways just sharing with others in person. Being clean and sober is so much better when you can honestly share with others. We get to share and be as open as we want. I find sharing everything from the gut and where we honestly stand now, is so helpful in a way to remember to be grateful.

Once you have a few 24 hours under your belt you can even see in yourself some growth just by sharing. When you’re not down in the dumps and you can find that gratitude, you learn that you can be happy and celebrate with others, in their growth as well.

In the near half day mark, I took time to share with my driver and friend. Maybe I should say he took the time more so. It did help clarify things and though this person may not necessarily be at the gatherings, just having that human contact is helpful.

When I got sober the saying used to be to “wear life like a loose coat.”  Don’t take everything so serious. Especially, we shouldn’t take ourselves so seriously. The point is growth and we don’t have to be all doom and gloom.

After all part of recovery is learning to enjoy life and with a purpose. (Man, I hope I am hearing myself, right now!)

In the latter part of the afternoon, a friend came over she cut my hair and did a wonderful job. I didn’t have to explain much. But even doing stuff like this is like trusting people. Learning to trust each other is a gift. The chance to be trusted is also a gift. The great thing is we all share when you really become part of, rather than just being around.

This evening was even more special as my therapist came for a one on one time. If you’re anything like me, you need all the help you can get through therapy. I received my 15-year coin of sobriety. It meant so much to me that he presented it. I cannot wait to take it to my gatherings to pass it around the tables.

This therapist I have saw some of the me that used to be. He has also seen me through the years go through valleys and mountain tops. Tonight, I just needed the reminder I wasn’t alone. No matter how old we get and even though we know we aren’t alone, we just sometimes need that reminder.

Now that I have written it all out, I can see I had reminders all day. I was never alone. I am grateful for that today. To Thine Own Self Be True.

Thanks for reading. This here’s Boxcar Mike over and out.

God Bless y’all !

 

 

 

My Journey is About Progress Rather Than Perfection

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Hi Everyone!

I just have to keep writing. I couldn’t get what I wanted to write about into words. Instead, I am sharing my experience today. I want to be intentional and do better. I also want to be better.

I guess I am amazed because every time I think I am going to write on a subject, or use it to chair a meeting, it gets switched. Today I am not sure if it’s God or if I just let myself run out of time.

Maybe a bit of both happened. I am thinking God can use our weaknesses and make something beautiful out of it.

It was a really long day I was trying forever to get caught up on a few things. I also wanted to help someone else. I found myself being helped a lot too. What an amazing day, even though I could feel my energy just being drained.

It was time for my ride, and I felt so unprepared, but I grabbed my stuff and went out the door. I am very grateful for rides today. They help me stay connected. We also get time to share before and after each gathering.

Tonight, someone made me realize it was important to share my anniversary/birthday, even though it felt repetitious.

I also learned what I share matters. It can mean so much to someone relatively new, to know others have stayed clean and sober longer than twenty-four hours.

In spite of everything I have still grown, and someone’s been trying to get me to see that. Sure, maybe I have a lot of work still but compared to how I once was. I can put some words together and possibly say a prayer, and every once in a while, even pause.

I am not quitting on myself today. I want to keep going forward even when I get tired.

A long time ago a friend handed me a card with his phone number on it. On the back of the card, it read me, and my friends don’t hurt each other or ourselves today. We still learn today that we do sometimes hurt others and ourselves today.

We just try not to hurt ourselves or others today. I am guilty of both. I keep searching for the next right thing to do.

Sometimes the next right thing to do seems like a tall order this is why we need to stay connected. I can’t do it alone. I do have to do the work and the piper will come, if I ignore my behavior.

Part of what I can do is carry this part of the message and share my journey along the way as living amends. I cannot change without mending my ways. Finally, I just realized as I am writing this, it takes a lot of grace!

I do want to share with you there is a way out of our self-destructive, messed up ways. There is hope and we have to hang on to it and be willing to take the steps out of the insanity.

The last thing I want to say in this entry is that one day is just as important as someone who has 5, 10, or even 15 years. It works. We can start for hope’s door anytime we choose to.

Thank you for reading! As I’ve mentioned I have Facebook Page Boxcar Mike search for me on Facebook and if you want to be friends let me know on that page or drop a comment here and let me know your name. If you just add me without me knowing you, then I will suspect more spam.

This here Boxcar Mike, over and out! God bless y’all everybody!

 

 

Alcoholism Two-fold A Physical Craving and A Mental Obsession

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Photography: WordPress Wallpaper

I haven’t stopped reading. I have not posted in a bit though. I apologize for that.

Chapter four of the book, “A Program for You” has been hard for me to put into my own words. I think its is extremely important to always go back to the source. The truth is a lot of stuff is repetitive. It is important to repeat because so much gets said that another person said.

This is why going back to the source is necessary, at least for me. I don’t feel I can fully comprehend things without having that source.

I think for me for years I saw the disease of alcoholism as an allergy and that would be my excuse once more for saying things are not my fault. This is only a half truth. I am responsible for my own actions. Once I am armed with the truth of the disease, I am even more so, responsible.

The disease described as an allergy is twofold. The first part is the physical craving brought on by the first drink. The second part of it being an obsession. This can be arrested by following a simple program.

As I read this with understanding now, it is clicking in how it works. I have to keep going back to the doctor’s words. I have never been able to just trust that someone said something, that someone else said. I think the bottom line to this has always been, since I don’t trust myself, I sure can’t trust others either. Not on their words alone.

You’ll hear it said over and over, it is one of the diseases that will tell you, you don’t have the disease.

Let me just state, I have deep distrust and dislike for doctors in general. I will also say some are miracle workers that go above and beyond their calling. That said, there is something to this Dr William D. Silkworth.

As we read later on in Bill’s Story, it all began with Ebbie T. from the Oxford Groups, a friend of Bill’s. He was hopeless and would be committed to an asylum for the rest of his life if not, for the doctor. Because of his story and getting to share that with Bill. The proof that came from doctor’s opinion resulted in over 100 people recovering from a seemingly hopeless state of mind.

Alcoholics are those that have an abnormal reaction to alcohol. I have an abnormal reaction to alcohol. Its not that I have this abnormal reaction that makes me a victim, sinful, bad, weak, or wrong. It just is.

I have shared with a couple people and gathered with several people this week.

For most of my childhood I lived in the country. I suppose that’s in fact drawn me to the country and that way of life. Most of my drinking was done in the country, after coming of age and few years before. I have always loved country songs and been to many dances etc.

There’s one country song that came out since I have been sober. It makes me think back to when I drank. It talks about the genie in the bottle and how she lies to you. I bought a bunch of lies and have told several myself. Today I want the truth and need to really be recovered.

I am powerless over alcohol my life is unmanageable. But again, alcohol is but a symptom too. More on that later.

Day 8 3 things grateful for  21 days to rewiring my brain to be happy

  1. I am grateful for the Doctor’s Opinion
  2. I am grateful for fellowship
  3. I am grateful to write.

I will probably start the 21-day challenge over next month in hopes to stay on tract. However, in order to write. I am still going to post 3 things I am grateful for. I find it motivating.

Thanks for reading another blog post entry of Boxcar Mike over and out!

God Bless Everybody!

 

 

A Recipe Study Thinking I Was Ready

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Welcome Back! This is a Day 7 Blogpost entry. I am far behind.

I thought I was ready to start in on The Big Book. I got drawn back to read another chapter in the book “A Program for You.”  I really thought Id even get done reading the big book and be ready to do chapter by chapter and step by step this week.

I even shared that fact with my therapist. His recommendation was to take it slow and not rush things.

Now that I have read this third chapter, I am seeing why its important not to rush things. The important things brought out in this third chapter are finding out and understanding our problem, to begin with.

The first step shows us our problem is being powerless, and we need power to overcome our powerlessness. Third thing we have to find is that power which is what was recalled by Bill W. Dr Bob and Bill D.

The three basic questions are as follows:

  1. What is the problem?
  2. What is the solution?
  3. What is the program of action necessary for me to find and to use or implement that solution?

This is where we can finally see The Big Book as a text and study guide or recipe. I am glad that I can see where I was rushing and yet also, I can see where I have now procrastinated and used tiredness as an excuse to fall behind.

I do believe in the Book Alcoholics Anonymous and I do believe in a power greater than myself; Whom I choose to call God as I understand Him and Don’t Understand Him. I don’t expect everyone or maybe anyone, to believe the way I believe.

No matter what we believe I do know that there are no two people on this earth who believe exactly the same.

What I do believe is that the first one hundred people, recovered and they used a simple text or recipe if you will, that is a program of action. I am certainly not saying I wouldn’t love to rush through this. However, if taking my time gets the best results and following these simple directions help me do that, then I want all I can get from it.

I have to keep pressing ahead and do the best I can. I cannot afford for my recovery and well-being to take any days off of blogging.

The blogging happens because I read and learn. I take time to pray and meditate in the middle of it. That’s where the excitement for growth happens but sometimes it is so hard to want to pry the book open to learn. I also have to do better with communication with my closed mouth friend.

I have literally gone to sleep early and taken naps, blowing off our time. I really do care and want more for myself I just have to prove it through action.

I have come to understand a couple of things in recovery time is a great reminder and good to have for milestones to capture those moments in. Quality is what I want to today. Some days I just have to want it more than I want it sometimes. Especially when I let days go by.

21 day Challenge of 3 things to be grateful about for rewiring my brain to happiness:

  1. The opportunity to admit when I am wrong.
  2. The chance to write and share my experience with others.
  3. I am never alone even if I feel like it.

Thanks for reading another blogpost entry by Boxcar Mike. Over and out!

God Bless Everybody!

I Cant Get it Through Osmosis

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Good Morning Everyone,

Welcome to another thought on my journey. I wanted to get back to the book I am now reading “A Program for You.”  In my last post about this book we learned that the first 100 People of AA wrote The Big Book.

The main starting of the Fellowship began out from the Oxford Groups with Ebbie T. Bill W and Dr Bob were the co-founders of AA and much help from Dr William D Silkworth. Bill D. was AA number three. It would take two years to write the book and have it published in 1939.

Chapter three of “A Program for You”, is learning to use The Big Book correctly. I am so grateful for this chapter. It really brought a lot to light. Here’s the real deal of this book. The authors state that if you never read any part of The Big Book to put down this book and begin immediately.

That tells me a lot about the authors having integrity and their belief in using The Big Book. They are out to help jump start people into reading it and following the program of action.

They explain through out this chapter to which I can attest to over at least hanging out in AA how over the years the true message has been watered down. The fellowship of AA came out of the Program of AA not the other way around, as said exactly in this book. I know That I have just wanted to take what I want and leave the rest.

I realize this may sound like I am preaching AA. For me this is the message I needed to hear. You all are only getting to hear what I need. After reading this chapter, I now even realize how important it is for me to read the first 164 pages of The Big Book.

While we cannot do this thing alone it has been told proven to me time and again, no one can do the work for you. You cannot get this through osmosis. This is what I know for me. After all I am just writing this for me and if it helps someone else, then great.

They say the proof is in the pudding. Well I want to take these steps now, and really have a program working in me.

I can write and read all I want. Without change it is fruitless. This I know. I am not willing to let myself water down the experience or the actions in taking these steps. The thing is, I really want more spiritual experiences and to be able to trust and let go.

I also hope to share my journey with anyone else who has this in common. I am so blessed by any who have and are apart of my life. It’s time for me to read and take some direction so that change is a reality and not just a dream.

Day 6 3 things I am grateful for 21 days of rewiring my brain to be happy:

  1. Grateful to the Program of AA
  2. Grateful to God for waking me up for another day
  3. Grateful for the chance to change

Thanks for reading! This has been another blog post entry of BoxcarMike over and out!

God Bless Everybody!

 

Checking Your Foundation and Getting Real

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Hello Again, Everyone!

As I have stated in another post; I believe I did anyway. I am going through the 12 steps again and in preparation I am actually trying to do what is necessary.

It’s no secret I am an alcoholic and addict. The disease of alcoholism is a progressive one.

I think it’s important to take every suggestion that one has the ability to do. If you can’t I truly believe surrounding yourself with good, quality sobriety is the best way to make it possible. We cannot do this thing alone.

I also believe it all has to be done by design of The Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous and I am sure many may balk at this. I admit I am using Hazelden’s workbooks, but they are the ones guided by The Big Book and the Book written by two anonymous authors, “A Program for You.”

Today I just read the first chapter and it is jam packed full of facts of exactly how AA began and how the Big Book even came into print, by the first 100 people. Thank goodness for The Oxford Groups and Ebby T bringing the message of hope to Cofounder of AA Bill W.

In this first chapter we learn we learn that the disease is two-fold physical and mental illness. It is a disease that will tell us we don’t have a disease. Yet, we end up in the same situations because nothing changes.

This describes nothing less than insanity when we keep doing the same thing over and over, expecting different results. There are so many things this applies to, or so I believe.

We cannot recover from a seemingly hopeless state of mind without a spiritual experience. Many experiences though I believe are more of the educational variety as opposed to the lightening bolts and flashes of light. In alcoholism it is the drink that takes the next drink because we get the craving for it and wanting that first euphoria.

While I am almost 15 years clean and sober, I feel that I have a had a break in my spiritual foundation caused by myself. I believe the only way top fix the said foundation is to go back to the beginning of recovery.

It starts even before the admission of defeat this round. Thank goodness, I didn’t need to go back out and drink or use more!

There is no shame in going back and fixing the foundation of your whole system. What would be shameful and sad, even heart breaking for many of my friends, loved ones and myself is to go back out and throw everything away.

I would die never knowing I could be happy, joyous, and free. Today, I know I want to fix the foundation.

It all starts with being honest with yourself, God, and others. Or if you prefer a power greater than yourself. Early on they told me when the pupil is ready the teacher will appear. The big motivator is pain.

Pain will drive you to your knees and make you start praying in ways, you haven’t ever thought about maybe ever, or in many years.

One of the things that really made me think was when I was sharing about my anger someone shared with me and others how they watched a person go backward before they died.

The rawness of this disease is you don’t have to take another drink to die from it. I don’t want that to be my legacy. Its time to let of the pain, anger, and even shame.

Day 4 of 3 things to be grateful for in 21 days

  1. My Friend Kassi
  2. Learning Solutions
  3. I am not alone today

This is me getting real! Thanks for reading!

This has been another blog entry post by BoxcarMike over and out God Bless Everybody!

 

The Courage To Change The Things I Can

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Photo by Logan Stephens @unsplash.com

Hi Everyone,

Today I am going to discuss how the serenity prayer is important for me today.

One of the things that’s most important to me as a writer and person is to always be honest with where I am. Sometimes that can be challenging but I usually feel better with honesty. It goes a lot better than trying to pretend I got everything under control.

Let me just say for the most part my relationship and lack of one at times with God has been complicated. It’s not always so cut and dry. If it makes you uncomfortable, oh well! I won’t pretend that crap is over. I trust and then I take it back. It’s always been a two-step dance almost. It makes for a complicated relationship.

(On a side note, I think that if we were all so trusting and faithful in God we wouldn’t even be here. However, as I said before in other places, I am not here to out anyone or to tell anyone else’s story besides my own).

I know I want different and I have used prayer and meditation because they are important for me. I am not as consistent as I need to be in order to achieve healthy living. I do believe both faith and healing are something we learn, rather than something we just possess.

When I go to write an article here it seems I get a refresher course in how well I am not doing. Some days I still get mad because I cannot afford to drink at some situation or person that has gotten under my skin. I am not a well person. I am just less sick than I used to be.

I have to be willing to change and some days that includes picking up the 700-pound phone to text or call someone or make it to an extra gathering around the tables when offered. Sometimes it means listening to others and their dilemmas. There are things I can do to change my mind-set it’s just when I get there, it is hard to get myself out of that pit.

This is where the crazy train comes back to ask if I want a free ride. Let me just say that ride, is anything but free.

Let’s look at The Serenity Prayer (Short-Version):

God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, Courage to change the things I can, and wisdom to know the difference. Amen

What I have found is I can’t change other people, places, or things. I can change me. Even if I am not willing, I can pray and ask for the willingness to change.

What are the things I can do to change me?

  • Do an inventory: of who or what, the cause, how it affects me.
  • Talk to others phone text listen to someone else and their problems also
  • Pray for others even or how to be of service
  • Meditate
  • Forgive others and yourself
  • Start day over ask God for the ability to get out of the resentment and self -pity
  • Go do something good for someone and try not to get caught doing it or found out that you did good
  • Writing
  • Reading
  • Is there an amends I could be doing that I am avoiding, or have I confronted all my wrongs?
  • Don’t forget to laugh at myself because some of the situations I have gotten myself into, are so unbelievable. Having that other friend who makes sarcastic remarks reminds me of how silly some of the stuff is that I take so seriously.
  • Don’t be an ass

Everything I have listed here is really having the courage to change. I don’t always do these and sometimes it takes me a while to be willing to even ask for the willingness to be willing. That’s the real truth. It’s a day at a time for real and sometimes moment by moment.

Thanks for reading!

 

 

 

 

 

 

BoxcarMike What it was Like and What it is Now

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Hello Everyone!

It is good to be sharing my story of what it was like, what happened, and what it’s like now. I have to remind myself constantly I am not here to share anyone else’s story. I can only share mine.  This is not my parents or family’s story it’s mine.  From birth on I had multiple set of parents because I became a foster child. I thank God today for my birth mother who chose to carry me until I came into the world.

I was born in the mid sixties and grew up in the seventies and eighties. If you were talk to most people today, they will tell you I still have a lot of growing up to do. I grew up in church most of my life. Even between parents as a preteen I chose church. Its what I knew to be of some normality. I had the misfortune of things happening to me starting at a very young age. I have allowed it to follow me most of my life. The best I can describe it as chaos reigned in the one foster home, I was in from 2years of age until 11 years old.

As a result of that home I do have PTSD and it has been a real deal to recover from. Yet, somehow today it gets easier, then harder, and sometimes it’s just different. At 10 and 11 years of age I started running away from home. Everyone thought it was just the normal kid not getting his way and sulking. Today I do know that I did want to teach those people a lesson because I was hurt and traumatized by many things. I had to scream but I had no words to explain why.

Running has been my theme most of my life. I wanted to smoke it away and with cigarettes you might say I still am doing that anytime I feel any emotion.

By 12 years old I found a friend because I wanted to die, and I didn’t want anymore of this world. My world had crumbled I lost a family and felt like I was in jail. The worst part is the real criminal went free. The friend I found was alcohol and it was my first drunk ever. I passed for 16 years old with a catering company and decided pouring beer in the gravy would be an excellent idea. I had more ideas similar that turned out really bad after that. I was fired and asked to not come back by the family who had helped me get weekend job.

I soon learned what anger was again living in two different group homes. The second one was where I learned I had power! I realized I could slam a door hard enough to go through to the other side of the door jam and plaster fall. I was amazed at this. it put people in fear. The same fear, I experienced in my many dilemmas growing up in the foster home.

I met my now Mom, when I was 12 years old. Later she and her husband would adopt me into their loving family. They had no idea I was a packaged time bomb ready to go off at any second. I was silent some, but deadly during those times. I know today it was not easy for them to know how to parent a child with such a past as mine. I also know today they did the best with what they could, and people should have told them truth. I mean the whole truth.

I did mediocre in school and soon poorly. I learned what it was to do weed and drink. I wanted that feeling back and I kept chasing it for many years. I didn’t even graduate when I was supposed to and later after being sober some years like 9-11 years sober, I finally earned my GED.

I would keep hurting my family and running away. I would keep on getting drunk and high. Looking back, I told others my parents were not there for me. Today I know the truth is they tried to help me get out of many scrapes and most of the not talking for some years was due to me not wanting face the music. I ended up in a treatment center in East Central Missouri. My dad came and got me the day after he and mom drove the 3 hours or whatever in hopes of getting me out that evening. But I was too high on Ellaville. I became addicted to that stuff and always asked for it when I would wind up in mental health.

I would never last long at home.  I would clean up and get a job sometimes. But this time I would end up right near where my dad had got me from before only this time I ended up in a small town and soon left there after more drinking scrapes. I then hitch hiked not too far because, I ended up with a truck driver all the way to Florida. I think someone from a youth place called my parents as I was only 19 still. My parents said they had no interest in helping at that point.

I could not blame them. While the sobering thought went in, I went to get loaded instead. I had to move it out like every other thought. My idea of a drunk was one who ended up in the weeds, barely dressed, and by the railroad tracks. (This is where Boxcar Mike was born just recently, as I shared this with some people). It was a turning point so to speak.

Behind the railroad tracks, was a place to get help. I answered some 20 questions to see if in fact, I was an alcoholic. While the score card was yes to almost every question, I got an opinion that I was just an out of control late teen. But I held the right to be alcoholic from that moment to nine months later.by after 60 days I think it was I was in halfway house for men. You had to call every day and say that you were an alcoholic, you had been to so many meetings and still sober before you got a bed there.

I would stay sober 9 months and on an ordinary day a good day even, I was drunk that night in a bar I had never been to a bed I never slept in before and $1600 -1700 dollars gone in one swoop. I didn’t make curfew at the halfway house and I didn’t make it to work the next morning. I went to a meeting that next night and took a white chip. They got me back in the halfway house. I also had many times of suicidal rages both sober and not.

It would take 20 years for me bouncing in and out of doors of help to finally be serious about being sober. Many people die doing this! My parents even took me back a few more times. I kept moving back and forth and even to California at one point, Oklahoma another point, and after Illinois they said no more. They were done.

August 28th, 2004 is my current sobriety and clean time date. I still have a lot of work to do and a lot of amends to still make because some are just life long and some I have not completed and some I have not even begun but I am willing.

I do ask God for help and thank Him. I have had a real battle with my belief. The biggest thing for me was when the weekend my Dad would have a stroke. We got to talk face to face one last time, never knowing it would be the last. He said he wanted me to know he loved me, he is proud of me and I am to never forget that. I was 10 months sober. It still brings tears not just because my dad died. But because in all of my disease and selfishness he forgave me and saw past who I was and who I became. One month later after my dad had died in July, my mom celebrated with me my one-year anniversary at a meeting.

This journey is a spiritual one and I still screw up, but I don’t drink or use. I try to do better. I still want to do better today. I love my mom and her husband more than anything. I owe a lot to her and countless others. I get to stay clean and sober and hopefully make better choices. It’s one day at a time. I have more to share on recovery and helping myself in future posts.

Thank you for reading!