Robert B

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What No One Told me About Acceptance

What No One Told me About Acceptance

What I initially heard at my first AA meeting was useful, I would even argue, necessary for me to take at face value in order to see the harsh reality of my psychological dependence on alcohol to cope with a life that often felt painful. Acceptance was the answer to all of my problems today, that day, April 21, 2007…

My Last Drink of Alcohol Day

My Last Drink of Alcohol Day

Thirteen years ago, April 20, 2007, I went to a special place for me, a wildlife area on the edge of town. I go there annually, much like the waterfowl migrating there each spring. On April 20, 2007, I didn’t go there to watch birds. I went there to drink. At 10:30 am, I drank a pint of…

The Boon and the Bane

The Boon and the Bane

The Boon and the Bane: Boon and Bane; Blessing and Curse these they bring me joy and they steal my joy. Gratitude and Resentment; thoughts and feelings that free me and that imprison me; inviting me to be a better me and trapping me in the shame of a life seeming unfulfilled. Replete with wonder one moment and consumed by…

Hero, Victim, Martyr I’ve Been

Hero, Victim, Martyr I’ve Been

The couple of months before my sober anniversary, I’m usually intensely introspective and reflective. Oft it leads to a degree of self-shaming as I remember weekends and weeks lost to alcohol binges, letting my family down, especially the worry that I know that I caused, the possibilities of a career that at times seems as though it fell…

A Meditation on Uncertainty and Fear

A Meditation on Uncertainty and Fear

Sober, I’ve developed several practices, ways of being that I was unable to consistently use before. Awareness was, and can still be a source of anxiety for me. Sometimes, life’s pressures push me closer and closer to that familiar edge from which I once fell…

The Moon, the Sun, and the Stars

The Moon, the Sun, and the Stars

When I stopped drinking alcohol almost 13 years ago, I was left to face fears, anxiety, regret, guilt, shame and depression. It was overwhelming. The universe that I had lived in for so long was quite small, often a room with curtains drawn and the ringer and e-mail/text notifications off…

Spiritual Not Religious

Spiritual Not Religious

I sometimes worry I cross the line. I like my lines bold, thick, and clear. I identified as agnostic at about 8 years old as a child in a devout Southern Baptist family and community…

I Try To Remember It Wasn’t All Bad

I Try To Remember It Wasn’t All Bad

My first few days, weeks, and months newly sober, my emotions were raw. They often swept me away. Moments of peace rare. Fear was ever-present. My life seemingly teetered on the brink of spinning out of control to that place of ‘no return’ several times a day…

Three Poems About Love For Valentines Day

Three Poems About Love For Valentines Day

Love and intimacy have taken on new meaning for me these days. My spouse and I, in many ways, are an improbable, imperfectly perfect match. It’s not the first marriage for either of us. We produced no children together, meeting when our children were teenagers. The Brady Bunch we were not. With time, patience and acceptance, our family is…

What Are You Afraid Of?

What Are You Afraid Of?

Somewhere between my consciousness and subconscious, I knew that this was a question that I was even afraid to ask – this the power that fear held in my life. I’ve had a long pattern of avoiding as a way to cope…