It's 11:00 am, I sitting here in my sleep pants, cup of coffee and smokes within short reach, I have finished reading my favorite blogs or checking to see if anyone has posted a new one. For the most part it is peaceful outside the library window, I call the spare room a library instead of office because my bookcases are in here, my bills go on the kitchen table until I need to review and pay them, a chore for today, my desk is a place for the laptop to sit and for storage, plus a couple of junk drawers filled with nails, wall hooks, batteries, small tools, misc repair stuff, so office just sounds to stuffy for me, library on the other hand is a place of peace, a place to read and a place to reflect which is what I do when I am in this room, I also have art work by Mich and N's youngest on the walls. So now you know about the room from which I write this blog and comment you yours.
I was awaken around 9:15 by a heavy rain, something we need since the air last night was heavy with moisture so hopefully the humidity will be less today, doesn't bother me but I get tired of hearing others complain about it. I save what little weather complaining I do for bitter north winds and temps in the teens and below, anytime the temp is above 40 I am happy. I don't like the cold at all but live in a cold state and will probably spend most of my life living in a cold state, I accept this because I love this cold state, it's people, it's culture, it's fairly laid back nature, it's friendliness plus my family and love ones are here. When I lived in the central part of the state it was a work of acceptance, I am liberal they are conservative, I think Limbaugh is an intolerant moron with an ugly soul they think he is a God, I love blues, folk, bluegrass and jazz influenced music with the exception of a small town radio station run by 2 old hippies my music isn't played west of Lincoln, I love ethnic foods and culture sorry folks but Mexican and bland Chinese just don't cut it for me, I like seeing and talking to freaks on the street in the coffee shop and at meetings out west they are a rarity and people laugh and point at them, I am not a Christian and people out west have a hard time understanding this, but I spent 17 years living in that part of the state I am a better person for it. Once I got sober and stopped using my differences as a "poor me I am so damn unique I have to drink all the time" BS, my differences gave me a chance for growth, a chance to practice love and tolerance even when I felt like I was being shunned or looked down on for my beliefs. There is no way I can truly understand raw prejudice felt my people of color or homosexuals but I have empathy because I have had small doses of it. Jesus talked about turning the other cheek and loving our enemies as well as our friends, the Buddha taught the same, I was given a chance to live these words and apply them in my life so I hold no ill feelings towards those with different views or ideals. Now that I am in Lincoln, I feel right at home. I am still living in my wonderful Nebraska but I am in the one city that I feel I fit in completely, God had a time planned for this and it materialized when things were right for me. I think about the drunken years, the alcohol fuel hatred, hatred of others and self, the poor Me's and it seems like such a waste but it wasn't, it was a part of the past I can't shut the door on because one can of beer takes me back there, no matter how good things are now the alcohol will turn everything black and ugly, that is how the demon works in me, it blankets out the sunlight of the Spirit. I am grateful for my past and my present life.
My new job is allowing me to use the tools of understanding and right speech, not to mention awareness. There are some clients who are suffering greatly from shame and guilt, well all of them are but there are only a few who are open enough to talk about it with the techs. I have been given an opportunity to explain the promise "we will not regret the past nor which to shut the door on it" from my own experience, the above thing with living in a small town is trivial for the most part. The shame I can share about is the shame that those of us who had children during our active alcoholism feel about the damage and suffering we created. I am not proud of how I treated my daughter or my parents, I am allowed to share this with the clients and explain to them I no longer feel regret for what I did, it was part of being a selfish slave to King Alcohol, I share that for me remembering how I treated my daughter and parents has become a tool for staying sober, it is part of thinking the drink through to the very end when the "wouldn't a beer taste good right now" thought crosses my mind, it is part of a mental collage which also includes jails and homelessness. One drink, a thimble full of alcohol has the power to ruin my relationship with my daughter, granddaughter, mother and the rest of the people I love and love me, that's some powerful stuff and I can never forget it. Another thing I am learning is to work with people who are very mentally ill. I have spent a lot of time with chronic alcoholics, both in and out of meetings, those sad cases that just don't seem to get "it", some have died and some are still existing. The people I work with are the ones Bill wrote about in Chapter 5 " constitutionally incapable of being honest with themselves" they are unfortunate indeed. When I did service work at the mental health hospital I was in brief contact with some like this but now I am spending hours with a few people like this and let me tell you campers it is very sad. It is sad when the director tells us that these people are severely mentally ill and to please show tolerance and kindness towards them, it is sad to talk to or listen to someone with whom reality is sometimes an illusion, it is sad to know these people aren't even 40 years old and the future is very uncertain for them. There is one kid who really knows how to work you, he is mentally ill, in denial and gets verbally aggressive when confronted, this posed a challenge to me last night, I let him rant and rave, tried to explain or show him how this thinking was a wrong, I was granted the ability to be assertive without being aggressive, in the end I told him to go outside and cool down, later when I checked on him he was doing alright. We can't change these people a great deal but we still have to give them feedback in hopes the a small kernel of what we say may sink in, to help in anyway we can and I also feel that what loving kindness and compassion we show them in some ways is healthy for them also. My prayer and mediation time prior to work consist partially of asking for compassion, loving kindness and freedom from the bondage of self, yesterday I was given the honor of practicing what I pray and mediate for, it seems like a big order sometimes for this ex drunk, it seems almost overwhelming and scary. When I asked to be of service to God and my fellows I wasn't aware of of how much God would ask of me but God has faith in me and my coworkers who give me assistance and work with the clients also, just like it recovery it is all about "WE", I must not count myself short or the gifts I have been given, the old insecure Scott wants to do this at times. I take refuge in the 3rd and 11Th steps, I take refuge in the teachings of recovery, I take refuge in the Living Buddha and Living Christ, without these I am a dangerous man in a job that requires applying these principles every second I am there. I have said this before and will probably continue to say this, I love this job and I am grateful to my God for allowing me to have it, for the spiritual growth it gives me and with spiritual growth comes personal and emotional growth, tools I can use outside of the treatment center when I am in contact with my family, loved ones, friends and society in general. Must add I make mistakes, I am not perfect but I do the best that I can do. I use to beat the shit out of myself for making mistakes, you people in recovery told me I didn't need to do this anymore, that God forgives me and I need to forgive myself, thanks to God and you I have stayed sober enough 24 hours to practice this most of the time.
On a lighter note, looking out my window this morning I get the joy of watching the birds dig around in the wet grass for bugs. I get to watch the tree rats (squirrels) run and play. My bird feeder is a hit with all kinds of birds, even the black birds and blue jays are being nice to the smaller birds, I don't see the cardinals as much as I would like but every once in a while I catch a glimpse of them eating out of the feeder. I also have 3 rabbits who visit my yard, I take the bird seed and broadcast it around for them also. Life is peaceful and serene for the most part, I did have a bit uneasiness yesterday but did the footwork to correct it, once again my mind was telling me a story that was untrue but the only way to find out the truth was to trust God and ask the person I was worrying about the question that was on my mind, anyone who read this blog probably knows who I am talking about, all is well like I said it was just my mind telling me stories and my own insecurities feeding the story.
Well campers, I need to get my butt off this chair, take a shower, do some work around the house, look at a pay a couple of bills and then head to work.
Peace Love and Light to everyone!! and if anyone hasn't told you they Love you today then I will, I love you all.
3 hours ago