Thursday, September 28, 2006

Please welcome Musicman

Please welcome a new recovering blogger to the blogosphere. Check out Musicman's blog. He could sure use some support on Day 2.

Sunday, September 24, 2006

checking in

It doesn't pay to be late. I went to my regular Sunday meeting today and was too late to get my 30 day chip! Well, I got it after the meeting actually but I admit, I wanted the applause for staying sober especially after the last couple of weeks. LOL. Is this what they mean by ego?

Today is actually day 36 and you can bet I'll be on time for my 60 day chip...

My Dad has improved somewhat. He is still in ICU but they performed a tracheotomy and he is supposed to be able to talk again in a few days. He has life in his eyes which he didn't before and I sense that he is improving.

Today I'm grateful for:

My Dad's improvement

All the supportive comments I've got on the blog

All the support I've received from friends and co-workers during his illness

36 hangover free days

The beautiful weather we had in MA today

Monday, September 18, 2006

Still sober, still sad

Today is 30 days again for me. I'm going to wait to collect my chip next Sunday at my regular meeting. I haven't been getting to any meetings at all lately as I've been mostly at the hospital with my Dad.

His condition remains serious. He went into cardiac arrest last Thursday (sorry if I already posted that) and the doctors started talking about "end of life decisions". We were all basket cases on Thursday, my siblings, mom and myself.

Then Friday came and they managed to wean him from the ventilator. We were overjoyed as they were very pessimistic they would be able to accomplish this. On Saturday, he was still off and he was able to communicate with us for the first time in a week. A little profanity from Dad about doctors and hospitals did us all some good.

But Sunday, he had a setback and he was back on the ventilator. We were all wiped out again. Today, he was alert but on the ventilator and unable to communicate. He was frustrated trying to use hand motions to let us know what was on his mind. He had a breathing episode while I was there which was scary.

It's been an ordeal. I still have Airplane moments, but I am holding steady in staying sober. I'm just really tired and sad these days.

Thanks to all for the support.

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

A Hard Time

The past five days my 83 year old Dad has been in the Intensive Care Unit . He was admitted last week with chest pains and it turned out he had a "touch of pneumonia". However, he was doing pretty well according to my mother and brother and so I wasn't too worried. During his first night he took a turn for the worse. Apparently he was having a great deal of difficulty breathing and became quite agitated. They had to sedate him and put a breathing tube in. He's been on a ventilator since then. Worse, he has also suffered a major heart attack while he's been in the ICU. It's been awful. He is heavily sedated and full of needles and tubes and the upshot is my larger than life father looks like a small old man. A small dead old man.. when I first saw him he looked exactly like a corpse, that flattened look about the face. I, who don't handle ICUs well, lost it the minute I laid eyes on him....

He is a very sick man. His cardiologist, whom we talked to today, isn't offering any sugar is extremely serious. My father, according to the cardiologist, was a "house of cards" in terms of his cardiovascular system (he had a heart attack in his 50s and has high blood pressure and vascular disease, plus he's had several mini strokes--all this but he was as hale as anyone you ever met until last week.) The pneumonia was like pulling a card out and the house is falling. Even if he survives this, he will not be where he was. He will likely be an invalid for the rest of his life. It is so hard to see my father who was so strong and a real son of a bitch at times like this. Weak, frail. Near death. I'm not sure he would want to survive if it means he can't work in his beloved garden or walk his dog three times a day like he's always done.

I am upset, and stressed and feeling pretty lost. And I have really, really, really, really, REALLY wanted to drink the last few days. I have not given in to that impulse and I won't. Drinking will only prolong the grief that I feel right now.

Please say a prayer to your higher powers for my Dad.

Thursday, September 07, 2006

Thursday Day 19

I went to a meeting last night which I enjoyed and which settled the craving for a drink that I was experiencing. After the meeting, I enjoyed a chat in the parking lot with the woman I met a few weeks ago. We do seem to have a lot in common besides alcoholism.

At the meeting, so much of the speakers spend time describing how grateful they are for the Program. I have to say, I can't really relate to that yet. I want some practical advice on how not to drink when my cells are screaming for alcohol. How did they do it??? But I'm shutting up and listening for the time being.

Today I am grateful for:

A hangover free morning

The fun party at dAAve's site the other day

Some nice September weather

Connecting with another alcoholic

That the school year is off to a somewhat smooth start.

That this is a short work week

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

There's a party goin on over at dAAve's

Be sure to stop by and say happy sober third birthday to him!

Saturday, September 02, 2006

Audrey Kishline interview

A friend on one of the recovery email lists I belong to posted this transcript (link below) from a Dateline interview with Audrey Kishline that apparently aired last night. It moved me to tears. It is so scary to think that I could be Audrey Kishline. Her story sounds so similar to mine--keeping it functional, deluding myself that I had no problem because I could keep my job, house, family, quit during three pregnancies. And I've prided myself so much over the years about how at least I never drink and drive. And I didn't. But Audrey's story proves how we don't have control over any of that. It would be so easy for me to pick up the keys and drive off in a huff or a fit of anger after I've been drinking.

I remember checking out Moderation Management years ago when I first thought I needed to do something about my drinking. I never tried it because I just couldn't imagine going thirty days without alcohol. (That should have been a clue to get to AA.) Now I know that there is no way I'd be satisfied with 9 drinks a week. What's the point? Straining at the chains, is how the interviewer put it. He's right.

I came away from reading this article much more thoughtful about Audrey, who I previously dismissed as some sort of hypocrite. What a tragedy this disease is. No drink is worth anything--sobriety is key.

My friend wrote and I agree: If you are at all in denial about your addiction and think that perhaps you will be able to moderate, please do yourself a favor and read about her life. Moderation doesn't work if you are truly an addict. Learning more about Ms. Kishline will help you stop the denial and commit more to total abstinence. If we don't ever take the first drink again. If we can come to accept that addiction is not a character flaw but something we need to take seriously and nurture ourselves around, then we can then get to the job/joy of building sober/clean lives.

Today is day 14. I am grateful for:

Waking up hangover free.

Getting 8 hours of sleep finally.

My recovery email lists and the support I get there.

That at last night's AA meeting I was greeted by a woman who remembered me from previous attempts. I've admired her and am thinking I might ask her to sponsor me.

That I've got a rainy lazy day ahead of me.

That my new backsplash is finally installed in the kitchen and it looks pretty good.