|The old temple downtown. They built a new one in the 1950s. I think this one is beautiful!|
Kelly asks: From what I recall reading, you've once been involved in an abusive relationship....as someone who has broken free of that, and moved onto healthier relationships, do you have any words of wisdom for someone (me) just breaking free of an abusive relationship (but still struggling with an emotional attatchment to the relationship)?
Hang in there, pray, and turn your thoughts to others. Breaking free of my last marriage was probably the most difficult thing I ever did. I remember thinking when we were still together and I knew I had to leave "I am not done with him." Really, I just wasn't done. Maybe him killing me would have gotten me to be done. I was powerless over my feelings for him, and I just had to surrender them to God. I worked with others which really helped me. I was also the GSR of a group at that time which also helped. I couldn't think myself out of it. I just had to step out in faith even though it felt horrible. I swear, it physically hurt me to leave him and then stay away from him.
Anonymous asks: What are the best things that can be done to support the troops serving overseas? I don't live near any military personnel that I could volunteer to help the families at home ... but would like to do something to help.
My first response is to suggest you pray for them. And treat them with respect. Not gushing all over them, just with respect for what they are doing and what they have done. Also, if you know any families with someone deployed, just say a kind word - ask how their soldier is. As a family member, it is so nice when you feel like you aren't alone. Other than that, I don't really know. There is a lot of support in place for our troops. I used to knit hats for them, but was told they don't need them. They get a lot of donations. My son can't even look at a girl scout cookie, he had so many of them when he was in Iraq (which was my fault - I got a whole girl scout troop involved).
Annette asks: I thought I had read awhile back in your blog, that you had become an ordained something or other? lol If I have that correct, what is your title and what led you to pursue that?
I am guessing you are referring to my graduation from the Biblical School last May. I finished a four year school studying every book in the Bible. So, I don't have a title, and I wouldn't even consider myself an expert. But I am grateful for what I learned. I love the Bible - I did even when I was drinking. I wanted to spend more time with it. I miss the class terribly. I used to spend at least 8 hours a week studying the Bible. Now I just read it a bit every day.
Kary May asks: I'd love to know how you keep your enthusiasm for sobriety so fresh? I remember being shocked when I read how long you had been sober. You write through the eyes of someone that is seeing the world anew everyday.
KM, I would say that this is something I have to consciously do. I am by nature a not very optimistic person. I have never done anything in my life as long as I have stayed sober - except bodily functions like breathing, etc. By going to AA meetings and being in touch with other alcoholics, I see what the effects of alcoholism are. I realize, that by the Grace of God, I "dodged the bullet" in many ways since I am sober, which makes me very grateful. I have a choice of how I look at my life every day. I can see that I am divorced, which I never wanted.... or I can see that I live in a peaceful quiet home, which is in stark contrast to my marriage. I can see that I have a hard job that I am struggling to adapt to, or I can be grateful that I am a 60 year old woman with a new opportunity, gainfully employed! I have to keep it always fresh in my mind that I am an alcoholic who probably wouldn't be alive today if I were still drinking. And I definitely would not have the life I have today. I just have to spend a minute reframing things and make sure I am grateful. Without gratitude, I think we are all sunk. It makes such a huge difference.
Thanks guys. This has been fun. And now I will lay my sober head on my sober pillow and thank God for another sober day. What a wonderful world this is!