Saturday, July 27, 2019

I hear you

A group of women from my most regular Al Anon meeting have an email list for gratitude. Each day whoever is motivated sends a gratitude list to the group.  This morning I sent a gratitude list in which I expressed  how tired I am of living with this horrible problem of my son's addiction.  I guess a lot of the time I try to put on a good face.  Today for whatever reason, probably because I want attention, I exposed my misery.

I am jealous of a woman in the group.  She is probably the youngest of us.  She has a really great job in administration at a university.  She clearly has recently inherited money as well, and she inherited property in Florida.  She has two teen-aged kids and apparently has a good relationship with both.  She's divorced so she doesn't have the kids all the time.  She's dating.  She obviously comes from a close family since she just had a big ceremony for scattering the ashes of her parents in the Atlantic Ocean.

She has money, she's young, she's highly educated, she's successful, she's dating.  I have or am none of those things, except for a certain degree of success which is NOT reflected in the amount of money I earn (and I'm now financially devastated due to my son's addiction).  So I'm jealous.

Anyway, another younger woman in the group replied to my post.  She simply said, "I hear you". 

I want to be heard.  I want to be remembered.  I want to matter. 

Sunday, December 25, 2016

Christmas 2016

Whirling Betty blog has been inactive for a while, just like my self-awareness and self-examination.  I believe in staying in the present, since the past is gone and the future is unknown.  So here is my present:

I began the day with an Al Anon meeting today, Christmas, at 9am downtown.  Then another Al Anon member, Ginny, and her husband took me with them to deliver Meals on Wheels in a bad neighborhood located near the area where my son began taking hard drugs.  Then we ate at Waffle House with a guy who works for them.  (They rehab rentals in the same neighborhood where we were and rent out the units.) 

My son was in my house asleep.  He still is asleep now at 3:43pm.  At least when he's asleep he's not demanding drug money from me.  So my life is best when either he's asleep or I'm away from the house. 

I don't think I've been examining myself and my life enough lately.  I attend Al Anon meetings sporadically, but I basically ignore the teachings of the program.  For reasons inexplicable, I have been failing to attempt to improve my conscious contact with God.  The only way in which I do attempt to contact God is when I think to myself, "God, thank you for the house I live in" or "God, thank you for giving me a job to go to today".  Besides staying in the now, I also believe in the power of gratitude.

Today I discovered that my son sold the $1,000 laptop I bought him just over a year ago.   That was a lot of money for me to spend, but it's the one he wanted, and my goal was to give him the best possible shot at graduating from high school, so I bought it.  He sold it for drugs and now has no computer.  

The best thing I can say about this day is that my son has so far slept through it, and therefore has not yet demanded money from me.  Over the past year he has demanded and received $20,000 from me.  And now I live in debt.

Superficially, I am aware that I am absolutely WRONG to give him money.  The stories he concocts are lies.  And the times that he shrieks about the drug dealer waiting outside my house for my money, I should be calling the police instead of handing over the money.  But it's as though I have lost control of myself. 

Superficially, I know he should not be allowed to live in my house, and superficially, I want him to move out.  But he has nowhere to go.  I suppose that's not my problem.  But have you ever been in my shoes?

I don't know what to do.  I wish I had help.

Merry Christmas.

Gratitude list:
Today's Al Anon meeting
Time spent with Ginny and her husband
My house
The location of my house
My job
My car
My son is alive
I am alive, with no apparent physical problems
I have the day off from work
My laptop
Cable TV
My dog
Today's mild temperature
There is nothing wrong with my house currently
Living in a great location for taking the bus
Pleasant meal at Waffle House today
My sobriety

Thursday, November 24, 2016

Thursday, June 30, 2016

This is what I want to learn

 One of my facebook friends shared this post by Zen master and activist Thich Nhat Hanh today.  Because these words struck me as being profoundly important, I'm coming out of my hiatus from this blog in order to post it.  Maybe I'll even keep posting.  I have a lot to post about, if I can talk myself into doing it.  We'll see.

Thich Nhat Hanh

We have lost our capacity to say things calmly. We get irritated too easily. Every time we open our mouths (or write), our speech becomes sour or bitter. We know it’s true. We have lost our capacity for speaking with kindness. We can train ourselves in the art of deep, compassionate listening and loving speech. The Fourth Mindfulness Training can be our guide.

“Aware of the suffering caused by unmindful speech and the inability to listen to others, I am committed to cultivating loving speech and compassionate listening in order to relieve suffering and to promote reconciliation and peace in myself and among other people, ethnic and religious groups, and nations. Knowing that words can create happiness or suffering, I am committed to speaking truthfully using words that inspire confidence, joy, and hope. When anger is manifesting in me, I am determined not to speak. I will practice mindful breathing and walking in order to recognize and to look deeply into my anger. I know that the roots of anger can be found in my wrong perceptions and lack of understanding of the suffering in myself and in the other person. I will speak and listen in a way that can help myself and the other person to transform suffering and see the way out of difficult situations. I am determined not to spread news that I do not know to be certain and not to utter words that can cause division or discord. I will practice Right Diligence to nourish my capacity for understanding, love, joy, and inclusiveness, and gradually transform anger, violence, and fear that lie deep in my consciousness.”

Saturday, June 13, 2015

Happy Birthday, Cinque Cento

My car turns two this month, although I still refer to it as being brand new.  It's a Fiat 500, appropriately named "Cinque Cento". And it's red just like the Fiat on the cupcake.  However, there really should be two candles on the cake.........
Happy Anniversary!

Scientific Proof Thoughts And Intentions Can Alter The World Around Us!

Scientific Proof Thoughts And Intentions Can Alter The World Around Us!  

Check out this article posted by my friend Lynilu on Facebook today.  We've been told that our thoughts (and most certainly our words) affect our lives and world, but here's actual proof of it. 

I don't know about you, but I've never been good about being aware of my thoughts.  My thoughts are like breaths - they are automatic and unexamined.  But perhaps that's not for the best.

Meditation teaches its practitioners to become aware of breathing.  Perhaps meditation can also help with awareness of thinking.

I  have been advised to stop worrying. How can I stop worrying if I remain unaware of my thoughts?  I guess I'm going to have to do something. 
I took this photo in my garden this morning of a visitor encountering a meditating Buddha.

Monday, January 06, 2014

Enough, already, and happy new year

“Enough is abundance to the wise." - Euripide


Indeed.  This is a valuable outlook, especially for anyone living on planet Earth in 2014, where the majority of people definitely do not have enough.

I have been thinking about what I want my word of the year to be.  I've never before had a word of the year, but I stumbled upon the concept when reading something by the author Gretchen Rubin.  She's great about coming up with a list of rules and goals to live by.  

I have decided that I want my word of the year to be "peace".

Now, to figure out how to live by that one-word rule......

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Gram's garden

I have tried to find my grandmother's apartment from my early childhood on previous visits, but couldn't quite be sure which building it was, since everything is even more run down now than it was then.  But a couple of months ago I suddenly remembered her address,and after  checking with google maps, I knew it was correct.

So I walked there yesterday.  The area can only be described as a slum, and unfortunately I have to leave my valuables (phone, camera) at my father's house when I go out walking.  But I found Gram's apartment.  It looks like a regular house, but it is and was a four-family.

I was eager to revisit the special garden in back which had been so fascinating so many years ago.  It was a flower garden which had its own little cement sidewalk outlining its perimeter.  Gram and I slowly, respectfully, reverently traveled that path every time I could talk Gram into it.  (She probably felt like a trespasser, when in fact the landlady may have enjoyed seeing others appreciate the fruits of her labor).  

I was so taken by the little tree bearing beautiful berries at the back of the garden that I begged Gram to find out what type of tree it was from Mrs. Thetga, and then I nagged her every day until she finally gave in and bothered Mrs. Thetga with the question.  It was a Mountain Ash.

I was afraid to go behind the building to the stairs to her back second floor apartment, but the allure of the garden summoned my courage.  (I was afraid of being shot.  It's that kind of place.)

I guess it wasn't that big a surprise that the garden was gone, replaced by grass, weeds and rusting metal.  

But the Mountain Ash still stood.  It looks weary and lacks the orange red berries it should have at this time of year.  But it's there, guarding the ghost of a long ago garden.

In my memory, the garden was enormous, and our walks through it were adventures.  But yesterday I saw its actual size.  How can such a small space create such huge memories?