Robert B

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Transformation

Transformation

I just wanted to stop drinking alcohol because, that’s all that I thought that I needed to do. Truth be known, I just wanted to stop drinking for a while, just long enough to save my marriage, my career, my relationship with my son and daughters, and a handful of friends. I mean that, not with flippancy, nor arrogance…

Restoration

Restoration

Restoration – I recently visited my son and his family—his wife and one year old daughter. A relationship once broken, now restored…

Wonder and Beauty I See

Wonder and Beauty I See

I just completed my annual 4th and 5th step. I’m lucky in a sense that I first got sober in spring. Spring cleaning in AA feels good,creates hope and as a life-long ‘avoider’ and procrastinator, it helps me to not let life build to the point of becoming an insurmountable mountain of lingering problems, most relatively small…

Resilience

Resilience

For three decades now, I’ve studied the ability of ecosystems to respond to change, to ultimately adapt. I’ve never thought about resilience as part of recovery. Though I fancy myself keenly perceptive, sometimes I do ignore the obvious. For me to recover from alcohol dependency and the associated anxiety disorder and depression, I had to move past just…

And One Day I Realized That I Was Creating My Own Mythology

And One Day I Realized That I Was Creating My Own Mythology

When I first began to write and share poetry, now approximately 4,383, but who’s counting, I sought to describe what I saw and how I felt. I did not seek meaning, or at least that was my intent. But as sober days became sober months became sober years (paraphrased from AA’s Big Book), I began to need…

Just One More Day Was All It Took

Just One More Day Was All It Took

The day before I went to my first AA meeting, was almost my last. I was either going to kill myself or with any luck, not wake up. The day after, everything changed. I wanted to live. I wanted to live no matter what. Consequences of untreated alcoholism, acute anxiety and chronic depression were crashing around me and they echoed…

Holding Sorrow and Joy With the Same Heart

Holding Sorrow and Joy With the Same Heart

I used to compartmentalize my life, my days, my feelings. Sober I’m learning to be whole. I am willing to hold joy and sorrow in the same moment. This became possible for me when I stopped numbing, avoiding, and escaping pain, suffering and sorrow because they overwhelmed me. Touching sorrow I found joy. Experiencing fear I found courage. Meditation…

The Worst Days of My Life (Thus Far)

The Worst Days of My Life (Thus Far)

I’ve had many worst days of my life. Too many to count. Dark days when I stopped wanting to live and I bought a rope. The death of an old dog that was still too young. A daughter that died much, much too young. A career I thought I’d have forever that changed. The pain that I finally…

When I Lost Everything

When I Lost Everything

What was your bottom? Twelve years ago, I truly believed that I was losing everything that I valued. Dying seemed a relief from a life I could no longer face. I consciously lost more and more each day. I saw myself for what I had become – hopeless. Hope that was what had always helped me get through the hard times…

When Want Became Need And I Became Free

When Want Became Need And I Became Free

I remember how uneasy I felt newly sober. Consequences still rained down on me, affecting health, relationships, finances and career. And it was my mess, the miserable mess I created and now without the numbing effect of alcohol, owned. It took me two years of trying to stop drinking alcohol with the hope of reducing harm to those closest to…