Saturday, June 30, 2012

Good Karma or the God/Goddess/Divine Smiles on US

Hi all!

I picked Mich up from jail at 11:30 Wednesday morning. All of us were glad she was home. The last couple of days of having the kids on my own were very stressful, nothing they did but papa was just exhausted from chasing after them, correcting them, or having one of them under his feet at all times. Working outside in the heat didn't help matters and oh yeah my Surburban broke down to boot.  

Mich had plenty of energy from sitting in jail for 5 weeks to thoroughly clean my house, which I appreciated. I tried to keep up on the house work but by the time I got off of work the best I could do was cook supper, wash dishes, laundry, pick up the floor, too tired to vacuum and mop. She is better at working with kids under feet than I am. The kids treat her different than me, even though I was acting in the parent role, I am still papa, the one who gives them his attention when they want it. They don't demand the attention from their mom the way they do me, part of this is papa has had a habit of giving them what they want fairly easily, where mom says no much more. 

I have hit a meeting every day since she has been home, much needed time to sit and listen plus give back what was given to me. Yesterday, not 1 but 2 guys asked me to be their sponsor, they both said they liked what I shared in the meeting. Both are on court cards, mandatory meeting attendance. I shared in the meeting the only way to achieve long term sobriety and find contentment and a form of easy in living sober was to get a sponsor and work the steps, in my opinion. I shared, steps 1, 2 and 3 weren't that hard to do on my own and I survived on them but it was working the rest of the steps with a sponsor which really change my life and allowed me to accept life on life’s terms. I shared what has worked for me and also what has worked for anyone who is happy in recovery. Both guys said they are ready for a change and need help, both are tired of living the life they have been living and want to be sober and learn to live comfortably in recovery. I accepted being their sponsor but the rest is up to them, they both have Big Book's, so now it is up to them to come to me and start working the steps via the Big Book and the 12 and 12. If I can help these guys in any way to stay sober then it is my responsibility to do so, to pass on what was freely given to me, it isn't about me, it is about sharing the message the way the Big Book talks about. I hope at least one of them follows through for selfish reasons; it has been quite a few years since I took someone through the steps and doing this helps me as much as them.  

Mich starts work on Monday. She will be working with mentally challenged people, assisting them on a daily bases with their special needs. This is regular job with day time hours so she can keep the kids in daycare. One of the things I told her when she got out was she needed to find a job that worked with daycare hours because the kids needed to stay in daycare plus she wouldn't have the hassle of finding someone to watch them in the evenings. She had this job lined up prior to getting busted but wasn't sure it would still be there for her, one of her friends works there. The job will be a very good experience for her; they will provide the training she needs. I am glad she found a job and one not as a waitress, she needs to expand her horizons. Also part of our new deal is she starts paying rent; this helps her be responsible plus takes a chunk of the financial burden off of me.  

My job has been very iffy, pretty much on a week to week bases. They didn't tell me when I took the job that it might not last through the summer. Once the all the corn was emptied from the big outside bunkers, it freed up a couple of people to help out around the elevator, thus taking some work away from me. I probably would have been let go last week but 1 guy was fired for lying about a safety issue. We haven't been overly busy so my missing work hasn't been a problem, thank God I was working here when the stuff with Mich went down and not at the factory, I would have been really up shit's creek at the factory. 

Because there hasn't been any guarantee of how long I would have a job I have been job hunting again. I can't get a regular full time job because I start college on August 20th. I have been checking out hotels for front desk help, I have worked convenience stores before but prefer not to go there because of the clientele, sorry but selling alcohol and lottery tickets to people who don't need them is something I would just as soon not do again, not saying I won't but I want to try other avenues first. I applied for and got a job working at a newly remodel hotel. I will be working 3pm to 11pm, 3 to 5 days a week, every other weekend off. I knew by working in a hotel I would be sacrificing my weekends so was pleased that this hotel has you work every other weekend. On my short weeks I will see if I can pick up some hours helping maintenance. I have a friend who does landscaping and she has offered to pay me cash to assist her on occasion so that will be a bit extra too plus Mich paying her way now helps, sorry got off the beaten path. Another reason for hotel work is it fits with my college classes and meetings. I like working with people, have experience with people of different backgrounds and geographical locations, know the needs of business people from years as a buyer, I have lived here for years and know the best places to eat that are not a national chain, know out of the way things to see and do if people are looking for something different. So anyhow I was smiled upon, I found a job before I was laid off and desperate for work. 

With my whole job thing, I am putting a lot of faith in my God's hands/branches by quitting the regular workforce and going to college in hopes of a better future. Two to four years of college and not having a normal 40-50 hour a week job seems like a hell've a long time and quite honestly it is scary. I see the smaller paychecks and get nervous but know with the right footwork I will be alright. I am receiving a work study grant, it pays me $1250.00 for 10 hours a week doing whatever is assigned for me at the college, this is per semester, plus I have my student loans which will be put in savings to help out if need be. Once I get use to the routine I will be alright, it is just a matter of getting used to living on smaller means. I know deep in my heart going to college and getting a degree is the best thing I can do, it will hopefully pay off in the long run. I have some good people on my side making sure I stay focused and chilling the fears.  

Sunday J and I are taking a road trip to a lake north of here to check out camping and what there is to do in the area if we go there camping; it is a reason to get out of the house, chill with a good recovery friend. J found out you can rent a livestock tank; the tanks are about 30 inches deep and 12-15 feet across, look one up on line to see what I am talking about if you need a better picture, for $75. What you do is, 5 people get in the tank with a cooler and float down the river; it is a really cool and relaxing way to spend time with nature and friends, like tubing but different. I know of an old army outpost in the area too, J and I are going to swing by it to see if it would be of interest to our group. We probably won't take the camping trip until August but part of the fun is checking out the local and what there is to do.

Angel turns 4 on the 4th of July, not doing a big party this year, I will take her to the parade in my home town so she can get candy and see the horses, probably have cake and ice cream in the afternoon. J and his wife are having some of their close friends over for a cookout, J bought a new grill and is all about using it:-) I will spend the evening with them; see if they are alright with Mich and the kids coming over later to shoot off fireworks with us.  

Well campers this is all for now. I survived and was given a few gifts in return for putting the needs of the kids ahead of my own, this isn't something I had to make a mental choice to do, I just did it because that was what was in front of me to do. I couldn't have done any of this if it wasn't for being sober and love and support of friends both in and out of recovery.  

Hope you all have a wonderful 4th of July, whether you are American or not.  

Peace Love Light


Saturday, June 23, 2012

What a Challenge

Hey all!! Angel is pretend reading Grapevines to Carter, they are sitting in Carter's crib, surrounded by Grapevines and being good for the moment.

I received a big kick in the groin on Wednesday; Mich has to serve another week in jail. They didn't tell her until Wednesday morning, shock to both of us because she was ready to get out and so was I for different reasons. They gave her 7 more days for probation neglect/violation. What messed me up was not having childcare lined up for Thursday and Friday. Thanks to whatever Divine Karmic force there is, 2 people helped me out and I was able to work full days.

I wasn't given assistance for 40 hours of daycare but Mich was given 20 hours for job searching and the daycare I put the kids in said they would use her assistance from HHS. This has allowed me to work plus a friend has helped some and Carter's dad took the kids for a few days too. I have been able to work only 30 hours last couple of weeks but at least it is money coming in. The daycare has been very good for both kids. Angel really likes it even though it is a battle every morning when I drop her off; she is not a morning person for 1 and I think she still has fears about being left and not being picked back up. Carter is being good at daycare and they love him, think having a confined space helps him from getting into stuff; he only has so much stuff he can mess with.

I have to admit these 4 weeks have been a big challenge to my sanity and serenity. Both kids are a handful for different reasons. Carter has a very limited attention span and further more is very bull headed. He is very persistent about doing what he wants to do when he wants to do it. I have tried a variety of things to discipline him, holding him down in time out, setting him in his crib, I have been upset enough to pop him on the butt or thigh and all to no avail. The biggest problems with him are getting into the fridge, messing with the stove, getting mad and hitting, throwing food on the floor. I have gotten after him more times than I can count on these things and he still does them.

Angel minds better but with her our fights are over how she handles the kitty, plus sassing back. Time out works with her but I have lost my temper on how she has handles the kitty.

Getting the kitty at this time wasn't one of my brighter ideas. I found the kitten via a Facebook for sale group. The kitten came from a farm which to me means mama was a good varmint catcher which is what I wanted for hopefully getting rid of the mice. He is a sweet little guy very playful. He made himself right at home, no crying at night, used the litter box right away and didn't hiss at the dog. Over the last few days the kitty and dog have become best of friends, running around the house playing together, I have had to move them off my bed because they want to play on the bed when I am trying to go to sleep at night. Another reason for wanting a young kitten was I figured the dog would accept it easier than I older cat and vise a versa. The kitten is also very good with the kids, hasn't swatted them for how they carry him.

I have been hitting a meeting here and there and talk to my sponsor every couple of days. My bits of frustration only last a few minutes, well maybe 15 or so, they come and go. I am not stressed all the time just moments when I need some me time and either one or both of the kids is in need or want of attention. I do understand part of their acting out in negative ways is because they miss their mom and don't know how to express their feelings. Carter is fine going with his dad but Angel has mixed emotions, she expresses in her own little way she would rather stay with papa.

I have tried to express to Mich how much of a strain her not following probation and the judge’s orders have placed on the kids and me but I doubt she really understands. It took me working really working the steps to fully comprehend the impact my actions had on others.

There have been many lessons learn for both Mich and me during this time. I expect her to get a job once she gets out, one where the hours are the same as daycare, so the kids get the benefit of it. She needs to file for custody of Carter and also make me Power of Attorney. I can't control her actions but I can set up some rules for her to follow if she lives here. I found out just how much she was dragging her feet on the HHS assistance or just plan out bullshitting me. There is still a part of me that takes it easier on her than I should at certain times due to my actions when I was an active drunk. I need things like this to happen to make me work on me.

I am doing my best breathe campers. I appreciate the time I have to do just a bit for me, whether it is a meeting, talking to my sponsor, hitting the store alone. I am thankful for the people who have helped me through this, those who have stepped up and taken care of the kids for me, my niece has really been there to allow me time for meetings and a bit of me time, helps she is in recovery and understands what I really need. I appreciate the new Joe Walsh album which has a few songs about recovery and gratitude on it, I appreciate Pink Floyd Echoes album which just flat out allows me to drift into another world, music more than the words have a real calming effect on me.

I am really using the 3rd step, understand what I have control over and what I don't. I haven't craved a drink or drug since this all started and that my friends are a wonderful thing. The 3rd step has always been a learning process for me. I have faced a lot of challenges in recovery, every time accepted the things I couldn't, changed those I could, knew the difference and trusted the God of my understanding, by doing this my serenity has stayed fairly well intact. I hate having my Yin and Yang out of balance, I use the tool kit of recovery and the teachings of the Buddha to bring the balance back, isn't always easy and sometimes I have to swallow my pride and ask for help but I feel wonderful when I am at peace inside and out.

Well the reading of the Grapevine lasted 5 minutes; I am finishing this at 8:30 at night. Thanks for your prayers and positive energy. I wish all of you the best on your journey. Love ya

Peace Love Light