The Story of an Addict Who Recovered

Every addict has one thing in common, self punishment.  Until we figure out and heal from whatever it is we feel we must punish ourselves for our addiction will remain a mystery.  Clearly those who punish themselves must in some subconscious way feel they can beat themselves to a point of rendering their identity clean and clear from self loathing once again.

However, that is a sick attempts at getting well.  It’s an attempt which is seldom realized by the punisher.  And while we are in this state we also project our punishing onto those around us, often those we love most.

In The Beginning

My answer to the question “what was I numbing when I was using drugs and alcohol addictively?”
I had to numb my fear, shame, and intense feeling of inferiority.
For me, at a young age I was taught (in so many words and lessons)
that the whole world of people were all superior to me in every way. And that everything about me was wrong both inside and out. Therefore, I had to hide my
identity so no one would see how bad and wrong I was. Of course I had no idea of this at the time.
It took years of work to understand the emotional inner workings of my subconscious.

And so with this starke, devastating truth of who and what I was (inferior) I had to shut down and transform into someone else.
I (my true heart) became a prisoner in my own
mind always living/acting as status quos dictated, trying to be someone else. I was sold a bill
of goods and commenced to live up to what I was sold.

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For ANYBODY Who Wants to Understand ADDICTION

Facebook Group  Addiction Professional Referral Group:  In response to the comment that addicts don’t understand healthy fear and that healthy fear (the kind we need to survive) is somehow the culprit of addiction.  (This article is based on my own experience therefore may have nothing to do with yours. Read Disclaimer)

 

In short-Addiction is a solution to an emotional disorder defined as an inability to process feelings in a healthy way.  It is comprised of Intense shame usually because of neglect, abuse, and childhood lessons dictating that our feelings and we are all wrong.  And therepression of fear which intensifies fear.  Addiction is a solution to terror and the fear of loss and feelings.  Then- the solution goes wrong and we must find another or figure out the core pain and fear so as to find healthy solutions to it.  Simply put addicts are scared to death and have been taught they are bad, and wrong at the core.  Imagine going through life like that.  We addicts made the grave error of taking to heart what our parents taught us about ourselves.  We have been sold a bill of goods that is not easily remedied.  I don’t have a disease because I have found the core reasons for my fear and shame.  If the reasons under the reasons to drink and drug are not realized by the addict then he does still have a disease, obscure, and incurable.  Without self-awareness there can be no cure.______Laura Edgar author of Paradise for the Hellbound

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How To Become Who You Really Are

Get To Work!

Building Self-Worth takes time and work.  But it is a priceless result when we become who we were really meant to be.  We Become who our heart screams and claws inside us to be.

Join a home group and open-up to the group.  You have to be a friend to make a friend.  Show vulnerability. (true feelings) Express your fears.  The truth WILL set you free. (don’t incriminate yourself legally) Share “what happened and how it made you feel.)  Get phone numbers of same sex members.  Call them and check in.  Get a sponsor.

Chair meetings, bring meetings into jails and institutions, go to detox to share your story with others.  Get in the middle of the boat, per-say.”  Set goals to accomplish that are fulfilling to you.  Work the 12 steps with all your heart, leave nothing uncovered where shame can get a strong-hold. 

Shame is at the core; it drives us to isolate and puts us humans on the defensive.  Put one foot in front of the other.  Do Step Eleven and don’t stop doing it.  Years pass quickly.  I challenge you and myself to meditate 4 times a week and see where that gets us.  So what I am suggesting here should supply both inner fulfillment and enlightenment. 

If we lie still, chant a mantra of our choice.  The demons (metaphor) will leave, they hate when we lie still and focus on finding our Higher Power. Or IT/HE/SHE finding us. 

Meetings every day or two a day.

NOT ALL SPIRITUAL EXPERIENCES ARE GOOD-“My Overdose”

THE VISION I HAD DURING MY COCAINE OVERDOSE

From: “Paradise for the Hellbound” by author Laura Edgar
http://www.recoveryfarmhouse.net/paradise-for-the-hellbound/

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“TRAPPED IN 1978″

I was deep into my Cocaine addiction. I had a few people who enabled my drug use and one was a guy name Ed. He was a drug dealer, not a street dealer mind you. He had a three hundred-thousand-dollar house in the late 70s and it was very nice. He drove a brand new BMW which was way too small in my opinion for his fat ass. Sorry I guess there is some resentment left. He was a greasy Italian not the beautiful kind like my daughter’s father. Those dark olive skin beauties with the almond shaped eyes that wear the top lid eye liner so well. My daughter is gorgeous and I am very proud of her Italian heritage. No! This man was a pale skinned sweaty, greasy, over-weight (yet judged anybody that didn’t have a models body) jet black hair, blood like ice coursing through his heartless veins, probably connected to the mafia, he sure as hell acted like it, Italian. I resent the hell out of him EVEN STILL because of what he nearly did to me and the fact that I have not let it go. I promise to work on it.
I remember one day I rode around with him back in Tampa in the BMW that smelled like cherries all the time. He stopped to drop money off to a woman at her house in Lutz. I asked him why she was receiving money from him. He talked in the “we” context about his organization of some sort. He said that basically one of his dealers (the woman’s husband apparently” went to jail while selling the organizations goods. So the woman was hand delivered compensation on a monthly basis since her husband didn’t snitch. My drug dealing friends taught me at a very young age YOU JUST DON’T SNITCH-EVER! Unlike the attitude of the people I have met in the later years of my rampant addiction who automatically snitched at the drop of a hat. I was taught that’s the lowest most worthless thing you can do to anyone.
I went to jail myself back then not long after that conversation. Recently one of my old friends from back in-the-day said the organization  almost had me killed for fear I would turn them in once I was arrested. Well, leaving town back then for a very long time may have saved my life. I refused to snitch and was on the run for thirteen years because of my principles. They didn’t know that I had refused to snitch. How would they know? I was over the deep end in their opinion. I couldn’t handle my drugs in their opinion. The drugs they supplied that is. Once I was arrested Fat Ed treated me like a bad tooth. He pulled me out and threw me away. My overdose happened prior to that. Allot went on back then but this isn’t a book about war stories. It’s a book about my recovery and how it all happened.

Our Dope Shooting Binge

We used to eat Quaalude and then break open the Cocaine bag. We snorted it, smoked it, shot it, and any other way we could find to get it into our blood stream that’s what we did. Me and “Fat Ed” as we called him were on a two-day coke shooting binge on this day. God blessed me with some very large and very strong veins. I rarely couldn’t hit myself once I learned how. However, this must have been before I learned to inject my own drugs because Fat Ed was hitting me up at this time. We were shooting up in the bathroom for some reason don’t remember why. We did shot after shot after shot but I wasn’t satisfied, it was never enough.   Long story short I kept complaining “Ed it’s not enough give me more, I want more, more, more!”. And on and on I went. I can’t say I blame Ed; he finally did what I asked him to do after many warnings. He kept saying “Lori it’s too strong, we must be careful”. But the nagging finally got to him as he fixed me up the lethal shot. He knew it would kill me, he knew what he made up would kill me. He knew it was way too much. He was sick of me hounding him. Fat Ed is still alive today from what I have heard, unlike many other of my old friends.

HE GAVE ME THE HUGE SHOT
I crashed to the bathroom floor. What they told me after I woke back up was they gave me C.P.R. and I finally woke up after a couple minutes. But it wasn’t because Ed saved my life. It was because his roommate Mike was in the house and refused to let me die. Mike was Ed’s longtime partner. He knew and didn’t approve of what we were doing in the bathroom. But it was what Mike told me about his best friend after I woke and he pulled me aside that really shocked me. Mike saved my life and then said “Lori, if you ever date Ed again after this I won’t have any respect for you.” Mike continued, “Ed told me to take you out and throw you into a dumpster. He had no desire to even try to bring you back.” He said. Those were the most words Mike had ever spoken to me. I remember his concern waking me up, “are you OK Lori, do you know where you are and what day it is?” I was so lost back then. I had no identity.   I didn’t know who I was emotionally or spiritually. I was back knocking on Ed’s door a few days later once I recuperated from my shocking overdose in spite of what Mike had told me. I didn’t know how to love myself….yet.

THE VISION

While I was out cold, apparently I fell flat on my back to the floor. I could feel myself as if I were shrunk down to nothing, my body left me. All I was, was a thought without a body. I was invisible as if I had been shrunk down into a minute fraction of my normal size so small the human eye could not have seen me. But my thoughts were still just as large as before.   My ideas were still alive. I had a consciousness about me.   I was not aware of why I was shrunk down in the center of a rock prison.   I didn’t know that I had, at one time had a body and lost it.   All I knew is I was crushed into the center of a rock and I couldn’t move.   There was no white light.  I was imprisoned and compressed inside blackness  without a body there was no time or space in that consciousness. There was no light of God’s Spirit that I could feel.  No warmth on my body from the sun, no wind on my shoulder.
Suddenly something happened to me abruptly someone was pulling me from the rock. It was horribly uncomfortable to come back out of the rock. Have you ever been awoken abruptly from a hangover sleep by a glass of cold water on the face? Magnify that by a million that is how it felt being brought back from the dead. My body screamed! My consciousness screamed! No! I wanted to be left in the rock, the rock would become my home even though I had no power at all to do anything crushed without a body or limb to move. I was ripped from the rock and my body ripped with the movement. I see the rock now it was white and black speckles. Like a rock you would see in a North Carolina river. But this rock was animated hanging me in anti-space where there is no time or space. Space is a wonderful thing I tell you. I never ever want to return to the prison I was in when I died. My overdose happened before I met my God, knew Jesus, before my third step. There was no white light my friend only a prison and a thought.   And Fat Ed would have left me there he didn’t care.   But I didn’t remember anything in my prison it was devoid of knowledge. All there was is a silent awareness. Mike was my angel that day back in 1978. Mike saved my soul from that rock prison. Mike acted in accordance with God, my God. Mike is in my prayers where-ever he may be. Please my friends seek God while it is still light. Get to know your maker lest you end up in that horrible place. Life and Love and having a vessel to call a body is the best way to be that I know of. My soul was imprisoned while I was alive, therefore when I died it was also imprisoned. I don’t know if I would have ever been freed from that prison had I not been brought back to life . In 1986 I was born again, born of the Spirit a second birth they call it¬¬. I came alive when I found that little Baptist Church in the meadow and God introduced Himself to me in a big way. (see “the Baptism of the Holy Spirit” chapter of Paradise for the Hellbound). http://www.recoveryfarmhouse.net/paradise-for-the-hellbound/#BAPTISM%20OF%20THE%20HOLY%20SPIRIT

What is the easiest way to get sober?

 

HOW DO I CHOOSE A HIGHER POWER

DO YOU KNOW WHO YOUR HIGHER POWER REALLY IS?

Third Step Prayer short version

God, I offer myself to Thee—to build with me and to do with me as Thou wilt.  Relieve me of the bondage of self, that I may better do Thy will.  Take away my difficulties, that victory over them may bear witness to those I would help of Thy Power, Thy Love, and The way of life.  May I do Thy will always!
TWELVE STEP PRAYERS

A DOOR KNOB IS NOT A POWER GREATER THAN YOURSELF THEREFORE IT IS NOT A “HIGHER POWER”

We want to choose a god deserving of our faith not an inanimate object that has less power than the man who installed it into the door.  Why not seek God with our heart in prayer?  Seek and we will find.  Could it be our resentment, pain, and hurt is much too deep to even consider seeking a god whom we feel is the reason we have suffered?   Or is our desire to control all things too strong in us to risk relinquishing control?   Our pain and consequences of active addiction must be more intense than our fear of the unknown and giving up control.

In Narcotics Anonymous it has been said many times and is a popular belief that we may conjure up and name our own Higher Power.  Also members have said, if we want to use a door knob as a HP we can.   They say a door knob will work just as good as if we had one of the well-documented HP’s.  Perhaps the “Door knob” is the official-unofficial HP of N.A.  But again, a doorknob is not a power greater than any human.

Many people in N.A. have major prejudices against organized religion.  It is understandable that if we expect any group of people to be spiritually perfect or to adhere to all that their religion teaches we will automatically consider them hypocrites and not worthy of our respect when they falter, sin, or make a mistake contrary to their perspective rules of thumb.  These preconcieved type-sets that run deep in the neuron-pathways of our brain will have to be set aside or we won’t find a sponsor that we feel is fit to be our guide.  All addicts have character flaws and do all religious people.

The first mention of “God” in the 12 steps of A.A. is in Step Two.  “We came to believe that a power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity”.  When I did step two I believed that my HP “could” restore me to sanity.  However I wasn’t so sure that IT would restore me (if I had ever been sane).

My own HP is The Father that Jesus spoke of in the days of old.  My other HP is Jesus Himself.  If this pisses you off be sure to put your prejudice on your step four (I did).  Your feelings of resentment are there for a valid reason no doubt.  You were probably wronged by religious people.  However the steps are about releasing the baggage that deep hurt and resentments cause in our heart and soul.

Anyway personally I also believe there are many other HP’s which could actually be used as a person’s main recovery HP.  And that any of these god’s have the power available to them to keep a person sober when they learn to rely on them.  Christian doctrine would call my beliefs sacrilegious but, oh well.    I didn’t make-up my beliefs concerning Gods.  I learned to seek God and meditated for many years.  I believe that “The Most High God” and creator gave power to many other beings we can call gods.  Gods such as The Moon Goddess, The God of The Sun, and many more to choose from.

A THOUSAND GODS TO CHOOSE FROM

HOW TO TRULY FIND AND CONNECT WITH YOUR OWN HIGHER POWER

In this article I explain how to really find YOUR higher power by seeking with your heart.  There will be no doubts when God reveals itself to you.  https://www.recoveryfarmhouse.com/vengeance-is-mine-sayeth-the-lord/

Is Resentment the Number One Offender?

What does it mean and who said it?  “Resentment is the number one offender”

Bill Wilson co-founder of Alcoholics Anonymous wrote the phrase “resentment is the number one offender” in the Big Book.

Resentment is the “number one” offender. It destroys more alcoholics than anything else. From it stem all forms of spiritual disease, for we have been not only mentally and physically ill, we have been spiritually sick. When the spiritual malady is overcome, we straighten out mentally and physically. In dealing with resentments, we set them on paper. We listed people, institutions or principles with whom we were angry. We asked ourselves why we were angry. In most cases it was found that our self-esteem, our pocketbooks, our ambitions, our personal relationships (including sex) were hurt or threatened. So we were sore. We were “burned up.”

On our grudge list we set opposite each name our injuries. Was it our self-esteem, our security, our ambitions, our personal, or sex relations, which had been interfered with?

It means that if we hold onto resentments then we will relapse and resentment is the cause of our relapse.  But really how true is that?  Well at face value it appears that resentment toward others and anger is the cause of our relapse.  It seems to be the most dominant emotion addicts have when going back out.

However, I am not so sure the resentment for others has taken the relaps-er back out.  I rather think anger and blame in the form of resentment is the survival skill which helps us live with ourselves when we step back into a life we know will kill us.  There is actually only one resentment that sends us back out if you look deeper into our hearts, which is a resentment toward self.

But what lies underneath our self loathing?  Our self loathing is at the core of all our other resentments.  Ask any addict in the midst of a relapse and he will most likely deny to you his self-hate.  Addicts carry much shame and shame is at the core of our deception to self and others.   Un-processed shame, and hurt are at the core of our addiction.  These are the feelings stuck in our crawl.  These are what carries us to the dope man.

Addicts suffer from emotional constipation and Shame is truly at the core of that stuck place.  Shame is my #1 Offender Resentment springs from Shame to cover it up.  SHAME SUCKED MY LIFE FORCE AND LIED TO ME FOR YEARS

Bill W. touched on it when he mentions “emotional disorder” he just didn’t elaborate or realize that emotional constipation which is disorder was at the core of most addictions. (At least that’s my theory.)

Hurt transforms into anger and we can’t cope with hating ourselves so we bury the hate into a thing called blame.  We are constantly on the look-out for new people, places and things to blame for the way we feel deep inside.  We deceive us and others.  We must resent people and blame them to deal with and cover up the way we actually feel about ourselves.  The only true resentment that sends us back out is the resentment toward ourselves.

Why do people claim they have a cure for addiction?  Why are some people cured and others sign on to the belief “once an addict always an addict”.  Simply because they don’t know the cure.  Or they have done one part of the cure and left off another.

What is the cure?

Find the core issues of the original hurt and pain, usually stemming from a very early age, and emotionally process them. (cry, scream, write, share).  Transcendental meditation will show us our core issues.  While at the same time we must develop new routines, new habits, new people, places, and things.  Find new goals and a new purpose for life that is healthy.  Work the twelves steps and learn how to use the steps when needed including the fear list and steps three, four, eleven, and twelve.  Work step twelve for several years or some kind of service work to build self-esteem.  And the big one (included in the steps) get a Higher Power by seeking with your heart and stay in contact with that Higher power as much as possible.

That all sounds like allot.  Isn’t there an easier softer way?  YES AS A MATTER OF FACT THERE IS AN ‘EASIER SOFTER WAY’.  But it’s not something you can buy or special order.  You can put yourself in a position to get it but there are no guarantees if you do get it how long it will last as your only source of recovery.    The white light experience straight from God is the only easier softer way.  Usually people who receive white light experiences go on to carry the message of Jesus Christ or God while not doing any of the 12 step work on their character flaws.  And why would they?  They are riding a pink cloud.  But pink clouds don’t last.  God will remove some flaws during this experience but seldom, well I have never ever seen God make anybody perfect…ever.  So usually these people fall into some flavor of character flaw.  Most likely they delve into judging others, get their resentment back and relapse.  Then they really hate themselves even more because now they are turning their back on a God they know exists.

I know, sad story…I am talking about myself during my first bout of recovery.  And I have seen this same pattern manifest often in others, usually Christians in recovery.  Never the less it does not mean God fails or Jesus has abandon us somehow.  It just means God clearly WILL NOT TAKE A HUMAN’S SELF-WILL.  He will enlighten us, but it’s up to us to go out and get fulfillment once we are enlightened.  Hence step eleven and why it works, it fulfills us spiritually.  Step twelve builds our self worth, and fulfills us spiritually.  Step Ten, well I have found that Ten really isn’t enough, but instead it’s step four that I need to revisit every six months to a year and do thoroughly.  When fear of relapse slips in, I remember two things, I have turned my life and will over to the care of God.  And the program works, I can turn to the program, work a step.  This is what keeps me sober after countless lapses.  Sure if I rely on me I will fail.  I rely on God, the steps, and the fact that I am being healed and healing by processing core issues.

So can I really call this a cure?  ABSOLUTELY! There are many things that humans have to do to stay well.  Such as eating, sleeping, nurturing and being nurtured.  We do not call ourselves sick because we require food.  why would I call myself sick because I require a spiritual program?

I DO NOT NEED TO CALL MYSELF SICK TO BE RECOVERED.  THAT’S RIDICULOUS!  CALLING MYSELF SICK AND AN ADDICT IS NOT WHAT HEALS OR KEEPS ME SOBER IS IT?

NO.  I WAS AN ADDICT FOR 35 YEARS I KNOW WHAT SICK IS.  I WILL NO LONGER CALL MYSELF SICK UNDER THE ILLUSION AND FEAR THAT IF I SAY I AM HEALED I WILL RELAPSE.  THAT IS A.A. SUPERSTITION AND LORE WHICH IS DERIVED FROM FEAR.

The 12 Steps- every resentment, shame, every guilt, every hate, every prejudice, every intense hurt, every theft. We do this till a light goes off and we then recognize our character defect patterns.  I recommend at least 1 page of writing for each offense. Repeat the process every year and when we get bungled up.

New fellowship either church, AA people, somewhere we can start a new social life.

Therapy honest and thorough, we must go back and feel the pain and process it out in an emotional way.

God-find your God

Set goals

We can change who we are but it takes work.  So what Life is work.

Be Sure to read part 2 “Is Resentment the #1 Offender?”