Destiny is Calling Me…

 

I don’t quite know where to begin, and my mind is racing in seven different directions, in seven different languages. 🙂

I am not fond of speaking of my past, in terms of the darker days. I feel a chill in the air, my mood plummets to the pits of hell-but God took me through those fires for a reason, and I know that my story is your story-you, the addict. And by addiction I don’t mean to chocolate: I’m talking drinking to the point of blackouts; stealing medications from clients; multiple “accidents” and that feeling in the pit of your gut-your guilt, coupled with the pain you are self medicating.

Nasty. Putrid. Bleak.

1267807_4628772416773_914926645_o

“How could I possibly clean myself up? What would I do with all of my raw, searing pain? How could I cope?”

Beloveds, listen to the wise old hoot owl-learn from my mistakes. I spent years running from a traumatic childhood, turned to booze and men, then pills and cocaine. I married the man of my dreams (ok, he is seriously on my nerves today-but we made vows and stuff) and when I had life by the balls? I washed it down the kitchen drain; hook, line and sinker. Ten years of my life are missing, literally. Yet, I was just another sinner, clawing my way out of the rat race; running at warp speed to what I had no idea at the time.

12219571_10203651372244307_1017795936136030929_n

I ran into the boys from Teen Challenge, an amazing program of hope and sobriety for men of all ages and backgrounds, who have failed in all previous attempts to get sober. Every holiday we see them at our local grocery store. I listened to their stories, we laughed-and cried together. I have an innate connection to the broken-I always will. Even without their stand and wares? I could have picked out those men in a heartbeat.

Addicts have a tell, and it takes one to know one. It’s all in the eyes-which speak to me in various ways. Today it was the look of the haunted. I knew immediately that they were just beginning their journey; the look of sheer panic, yes. But something about them stood out, as if they were old souls or friends I hadn’t seen in some time.

“I just got out of prison, was there for two years. Lost my family, home and job. I tried every program out there, and I relapsed every time-it is an absolute miracle that God found me when He did. It’s Jesus that makes all of the difference! I have my family back, ma’am. And you know who the glory goes to, now, don’t ya?”

Do not be afraid or discouraged, for the Lord will personally go ahead of you. He will be with you; he will neither fail you nor abandon you. -Deuteronomy 31:8

Every day you don’t take a drink is a miracle.

Be miraculous~

Fearless

Fear. Gripping, faceless, heart-stopping emotion. Different things frighten different people-but I remember, even as a child-being petrified by everything. I believe the dysfunction stemmed from a childhood in which I was raised by two incredibly anxious parents. As the years went by, I grew more and more fearful. Heights. Highways. Social venues. The straw that broke my back was the stalking I experienced two years ago-I dove into a depression so devastating, I thought for sure I would die of heartache. The world was becoming an increasingly violent place, and I wanted no parts of it, none.

I dove into the Word last Summer. The more I read the scriptures, the deeper my peace became. I began stepping out of my comfort zone: crossed a wooden bridge 800 in the air, over a rolling, rocky river. That was Jesus and to this day, I remember the way in which my terror was transformed within moments. After giving my husband a firm NO WAY, I quietly asked my Abba,

“Give me the strength Father, for Dwain. Let me be brave for my husband.”

Seconds later? I crossed that bridge like a boss, without any trepidation. I walked that rickety death trap twice, as we had to use the bridge to return to our truck, after having visited the other side of the river. One day I will find and share those pictures, as they may inspire hope in fellow Chicken Littles.

I began trusting Jesus for everything. Seemingly overnight, my crippling fear eased into a new normal, of brazen acts and caution, thrown oh so carefully to the wind. I put on the full armor of God. I prayed without ceasing, and failed often and miserably. One day I took notice. I stopped to reflect, to look back and see how incredibly far I’d come-how loved and cared for I had always been. I take it minute by minute, literally. I know the Holy Spirit will lead me to discernment. I force nothing-if it doesn’t feel good, it doesn’t get done.

In days such as these, when courage is required to simply be, it is as simple as calling out His name. I have my bad days, but not for stretches of time, as before. I know what to do, in those darkened hours of grief and angst: he will never desert you, ever.

No matter how hard it is, no matter what the size or magnitude of your pain, reach out to Jesus. He knows each and every hair on your freakishly large head. 🙂

Down to the Jordan Stream

One of the very best tunes I have heard in some time-this music soothes my soul.  I love old things: antiques, vintage clothing, the elderly, and I am reminded of simpler ways, kinder times.

Oh, hold on a second!  My husband is lecturing me about my absolute drive to come to the truth about our world, our society, our government.  

“I don’t know why you do it to yourself.”

“By the way, Tom Hanks is a pedophile,” I retaliate.

“Tom Hanks is a pedophile?” (giggle, guffaw, belch)

I say this with a lightness in my heart that hasn’t been seen since the day I married my man.  I know we are winning the war, the insidious little somethings that gradually grow and eventually manifest into full out plagues.  Sex trafficking.  ANTIFA.  Pedophilia.  Corruption.  Hellyweird…it’s getting to the point that people are waking up, and it encourages me.

Waking up was a process for me that, had I known what lay ahead?  I would have run for the hills.

Ah, Lord, I know I’ve been changed; I said Ah Lord I know I’ve been changed.  The angels in Heaven done signed my name-lyrics I relate to, believe me.  Here’s a little secret that I have been holding on to, wondering in what manner to bring it up in my writing-the closer you come to Jesus, the more you love Him?  Well, the more transformed you become.  I knew something was drastically different when I found myself loving my irritating, self righteous neighbor.  I am convinced she sells information about us all around this block, if you can call two square miles of countryside a “block.”

Yes, out of the blue, right after I became sober, the Grinch’s heart began to soften.  It came as a huge surprise because when I got sober-I got good and pissed.  At everything, really-I was a whirling dervish of RAGE and despondence.  Grief had crept up from the grave, and I went back and forth between crippling sadness over everyone I have lost thus far-especially my father-and the urge to beat the living crap out of anyone who even looked my way.  It’s like someone took you blanky, for crying out loud.  EVERTHING bothers you, my husband’s chewing was so irritating to me that I came close to sending him packing.  You cannot, and I REPEAT, you can NOT grieve, well, anything or anyone if you are using.  And when us addicts have to face pain, what do we do?  We medicate as quickly as possible.  Here’s something many don’t understand: alcoholics and addicts are extremely compassionate, empathetic and sensitive.  I know this for a fact.  I also know that I had, out of self preservation, put up an unsightly wall-against others, including myself.

When I was baptized by water last Easter, I wasn’t expecting any change, as I had been baptized as a child.  When I was saved, my life began anew-so I recommitted myself on a Sunday, in ice cold water-in front of a full church.  I was utterly and completely alone-no husband, family nor friends attended.  The air conditioning was on high, and I embarrassed myself by running from the altar, after having my clothing thrown at me by our Worship minister.  Not a pretty site.  Did I mention I had a sinus infection at the time?

Ah, I have totally veered off of my original point.  You will absolutely believe, deep in your soul, that Jesus is in and with you-when your heart begins to soften.  You stop thinking that you are any better/worse than the next guy.  I repeat that often, I am no better nor worse than my brothers and sisters.  You begin to put others first, and might even find yourself wanting to help others every chance you get-and it feels good and right and perfect.  The rage diminishes.  The cravings vanish.  Jesus sought after you, and you allowed Him into your very being.

So, if you think you’re turning soft, or that the hormones are raging-just call out to Jesus-then you will know beyond a shadow of a doubt that He will answer~

Tom Girardi and Erika Jane

 

This one is rather personal, in an eerie kind of way.  I want to begin by saying I am a lowly blogger, who contributes what she can to the #Q movement-I am not making accusations or jumping to conclusions.  I am simply showing you the information at hand, and I am sure there will be more to come, but this story?  It goes back two years ago, when I had been receiving Reiki Treatments and experimenting with the New Age.  At that point in my life, a rook of crows followed me everywhere, even on vacation in Potter County, a three hour drive from here.  I remember my 55th birthday, as my husband was flipping the burgers, he said:

“There’s your crows honey, they really do follow you everywhere!”

This is the same vacation that had me drinking, (recovering alcoholic) anxious and heaving with crying jags.  Brrrr..  I can’t go back there right now.  Suffice it to say, Jesus pulled me from the muck and mire that is the Satanic New Age Movement, convicted, forgiven and redeemed.  It was about this same time that I swore off Real Housewives of Beverly Hills, and Real Housewives of New York after seeing a party in which Miss Erika Jayne Girardi threw such a grotesquely lavish birthday party for herself-I had to turn off the television.

At that time, I knew the Holy Spirit was up to something, because after the lesson comes the blessing.  I was addicted to these reality shows in which women try to out dress, out spend and out drink one another.  They’re vicious vipers who would sell their soul for a buck.  This was when I was beginning to awaken, and as much as I loved those stupid shows?  It was nothing to give them up.  Nothing.

 

So, after taking in that video, I stumbled upon this.

Nothing to see here folks.

 

The Drunkard’s Prayer

 

I don’t remember if I talked to God while inebriated, but I know I sure as heck talked to Him hungover.  I remember walking the halls of Hearthstone Manor-an assisted living facility I worked for-there for four years, I was fired for sending a patient to the hospital.  That move cost me a census minus-and the resident died hours later.  They accused me of stealing pain medication, which was ironic:  I didn’t steal the meds from the med cart, but I have stolen hospice meds, in the past, while volunteering.  Don’t get me wrong, the meds I took were unused meds-I never, ever withheld pain meds from a dying patient.  The mere fact that I took anything that didn’t belong to me is a pimple on the ass of humanity-and I have hung my head in unabashed sorrow, only to be forgiven by the Prince of Peace.  Miracles happen every day.

I would arrive at 7:00 a.m., fifteen minutes late, but I never, ever called off with a hangover.  A strange code of ethics for an addict, but if I played-I paid, and dutifully went to work, the abject nausea and migraine headache be damned.  My anxiety increased, I would inevitably think of home, my man, and the fact that I had no memory of what had occurred the night before. I would walk past the rooms, even the office, and wish I could just lay my head down-and let the Lord take me away.

The State of Addiction is a twisted mess of nothingness, and no one is clearer on that than the person floundering in self hatred and wasted dreams.  I never thought I would escape my sentence-but Abba works in ways we cannot fathom.  As Grace would have it, I am almost twelve years sober, a fact I cherish each and every day.

Every day you don’t pick up is a miracle.  And just like any addiction, it isn’t what you are imbibing in, it’s the matter of what nightmare holds you hostage-unable to surface in a pool of despair and rage.

The promises-the lies.

One snowy day twelve years ago, I hiked the canyons near my home, in search of what I knew not, but hopeful in that morning mist.  I had a month of sobriety under my belt, to be honest?  I was a whirling dervish of angst and energy-it was pretty tough, and I truly had no intention of making sobriety a way of life:  I was just taking a break, you know, let my liver settle awhile.

Father, why have I lived such a tragic life?  Why am I so alone in this world?  Who will keep me strong enough, still enough to hear your voice?

And as I traversed the north side of the mountain peak, I heard my answer, loudly and clearly.  I remember being brought to my knees, the snow was deep and the wind biting.

My precious, precious child!  I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last, and I will come alongside you to comfort and heal you in this time of great trouble.

 

Renew Your Mind, the Rest Will Follow

I could not, for the life of me, get out of my own way today. You know that feeling-when you know, before it happens, that whatever you do/say/touch will be a mother loving nightmare of epic proportions. Yep. I should have known at the gas station, where I sat for ten minutes (no lie) trying to put my seatbelt on. A simple task performed day in and day out, and not once, but twice this happened today. I try not to get hysterical when something isn’t going smoothly-I always think that God may be holding me up for a reason, and that puts things in perspective.

At Walmart, I wore my brand new Batman hat, complete with ears that go up and down and it glows in the dark, the batman signal. It has long pom poms on each side. Incredibly warm. I set out today to make at least one person smile-and I was blessed by the reactions of most people this morning. I would say, ‘watch this’ to a complete stranger, and inevitably? If not a guffaw, a giggle and smile. I want to two of the cashiers that have been there forever. My whole heart goes out to them, they look so fatigued, so defeated. I felt pure joy when the saddest one laughed. In twenty some years, I have not seen her lips turned upward.

At the park, Jesse burst out of his orange hunting coat-whilst jumping in to the creek. This after chasing a heron so majestic it caught my breath. I begged him to go back into the creek and retrieve his coat. He swam right toward the thing, then balked at the idea-he hates this bloody coat. We were just beginning our trek, and as I waded in the Hammer Creek, ice cold water sloshing around in my shit stompers, I cried out to the heavens, “WHY, GOD, WHY???” Instantaneously over myself, I hiked the entire trail with freezing, wet feet. I remembered how hysterical my mother became at even the thought of my feet being wet, screaming – “You’ll get a kidney infection if you walk around in wet feeeeet!!!” That’s when I got teary, and remained emotional for the duration.

I stood at the window and took in the orange and blues, purples and pink of the evening sky. My husband had mentioned our Dylan, the golden retriever who lost his battle with Leukemia in 2015. I tried to hide my tears. Dwain came to comfort. I again began my nostalgic grieving-then, as I praised Him for the perfect Fall evening-a television reporter said these words:

“And after the ending, there is a new beginning.”

Cuffed on a Dirt Road

 

Okay, I have a million different things on my mind, it’s my 26th wedding anniversary, and I forgot my husband’s card.  I have eleventy hundred boxes of cards-as a matter of fact?  I collect them.  I.  heart. cards.  Big time.  I guess I could use one of those, but hey-it’s not the same.  Somehow, spending twenty bucks on a card makes it mean more, and Hallmark?  You have enough of my money, thank you.

Dwain and I have moved mountains since we met, or should I say God has moved mountains for us.  Financial instability,  cancer, anorexia, a motorcycle accident, the almost-divorce, alcoholism and drug addiction, the death of my parents-issues that would normally drive a couple apart, only served to bring us closer.

I wanted to find a way, if underwhelming, to put those years into a blog.  But there aren’t enough hours in the day-I have so many memories, which will turn into stories, perhaps, one day.  So, here’s the Reader’s Digest version, ’cause it’s our day and my man is kicking me in my kidneys.

I was engaged to a decent man.  Or so I thought.  We brought out the worst in one another.  He became abusive on our honeymoon.  He knew I was in love with another man, and despite my pleas, we were married on June 9, 1990.  Allowing myself to be coerced, I made the worst mistake of my life.  I had cervical cancer at the time.  The stress was overwhelming.  I sent Dwain a card from my honeymoon.  

The marriage lasted one week.

1913529_1117294534970628_80384438458204316_n
The biggest challenge and love of my life.

 

I moved in with Dwain not long after.

It was wild, all consuming, raw and passionate love.  We couldn’t keep our hands off one another, it was a sickness-a curse.  When he left the room, I ached.  When he came back?  I swooned.  We are still as passionate and crazy in love.

God protected us from murdering one another over the years.  Alcoholism.  Drug Addiction.  Anorexia.  A shit ton of mental health issues, denied grief and a violent temper-all on my part.  We never laid a hand on one another.  We have never cheated on one another.  Although, I deliberately tried to run him over when I caught him driving his secretary back from lunch one Spring afternoon, years ago.

We were poor.  Dirt poor.  His first wife took everything but his soul.  I was a violent, malicious drunk-and the tears flow every time I think of how I must have wounded him.  There was emotional abuse on both sides.   Cops.  Court orders.  And, finally?  Jesus.

He is the song I sing.  He will always have me, heart and soul.

What a beautiful gift He has given me!