Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Abs Chat Tonight: Don't Let Me Be Lonely

Join me in the chatroom tonight, we'll be talking about anything you want, as long as it's about not drinking.

9 PM Eastern, 8 Central, 7 Mountain, 6 Pacific

Abs Chat Tonight! 

Been pretty quiet in the Abs Chat Room Lately but I hope tonight is different.

Abs Chat is focused on abstaining from alcohol—on a permanent basis,
long-term, or even for a shorter period of time (like a 30!).
Everyone is welcome to attend, and to participate, but we won't be
discussing moderation techniques or plans. For discussions of
moderate drinking, we invite you to participate in the Monday Night
Book Chat or the Tuesday Night Online Meeting.
So if you're abstaining, planning to, curious about it, wondering
whether it would be a good idea, or just want to hang out for sober
fun, stop by!
See you there! http://www.moderation. org/chat/

** PLEASE NOTE: Abs Chat will be held in the Abs Chatroom. When
logging in, use the drop-down box to select MM_Abs_Chat. If you wind
up in the wrong room, you can move between rooms by clicking on the
room list to the right of the chatroom screen. **

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

I'm Listening

My old friend Hilda once described to me the day she relapsed after 6 years.

"It was just another day, I got off work and decided I wanted to drink, so I did," she said.

Followed by, "I've never been able to stay quit so long since then."

I couldn't understand how someone could give up 6 years of sobriety that easily, but then there was last week.

Just like Hilda's "just another day," last week was "just another week." Before I get you too worried, I did not drink. But I wanted to worse than I have since the early days of my sobriety. And there was no good reason, which makes me think, What if there had been a good reason?

Instead it was a week of the usual insecurities, those moments of feeling like an outsider, those moments of feeling I've not done as well as so-and-so or as much, those moments when my best will never be as good as someone else's and, really, why would I even try? Do I really want to set myself up for failure. For ridicule? What if I let everyone down?

I whined about it all week on the message boards and during chat, causing some alarm amongst those that see me as the Pollyanna of the non-drinking world, because that's usually my take on sobriety. I even whined to the cap'n.

"Sometimes I don't think you realize how hard it is. Sometimes, like right this very minute, I really, really miss drinking!"

He just told me that he "got it' which of course he doesn't since he still drinks. But he also told me how proud he is of me which helped a little.

Then Sunday morning rolled around. I've been making myself go to mass every Sunday lately, I'm not sure why, seems like I've done pretty well without it all these years. But just like when I started this blog, and just like when I decided to write the never-finished book, that inner voice-it's really not all that still, Eckhart, old buddy-has been urging me to go. Last Sunday was no different but I was steadfastly ignoring it and not feeling bad at all about it. Then, at the last minute, I decided to go.

See, I've learned that my inner voice usually knows something I don't.

The Gospel was a familiar one, the one where Jesus tells his apostles that they have to give up all their earthly goods to follow him.  The priest expounded on it by saying that it doesn't really mean that we have to drain our bank accounts and donate our houses to the homeless to do His will, it just means that we have to recognize what it is we're supposed to do and be willing to sacrifice whatever is necessary to do that one thing.

Because it is the right thing for us.


I knew the one thing I had to do and I knew that I had to give up all my earthly insecurities to do it. Because it is what I'm supposed to do.  The tides turned and all the missing of drinking and feeling sorry for myself disappeared. I've been riding a cloud of "rightness" every since.

It was the same when I finally quit drinking, when I finally listened to the "right" voice and did what I knew I was supposed to be doing all along. Once I accepted that, the urges and the doubts disappeared. Because it was the right thing for me.

In the last 24 hours, I have seen four people return to the sobersphere, to their blog or to their online support community, after being gone for a while. They may not know it, but they are following that inner voice, they are doing the right thing.  Whether we believe in a Higher Power or not, we recognize what is right for us, we just need to learn to embrace it.

Even more, to revel in it.

Saturday, June 25, 2016

WOMBAT Chat Tonight! 9:00 EDT; 8:00 CDT; 7:00 MDT; 6:00 PDt

Come on, it'll be fun.

I'll be hanging out in the chatroom tonight if any of you WOMBATS want to join me. Remember this is a co-abs/mods chat, respect all other Wombats' choices.

Monday, June 20, 2016

Guest Post:

Acupuncture: What Role Does It Play In Addiction Treatment?

For decades, medical professionals and therapists alike have struggled to find the cause and the cure for addiction. Scientists have studied it from both a genetic and an environmental perspective. Family and friends have tried everything they can think of. Even addicts themselves have tried one thing after another to try and get relief from the problem. They may try counseling, moving to a different state, punishing themselves, rewarding themselves, checking themselves in to rehabs or going to church. Some people seem to get to a point where they are done and after seeking treatment or making drastic lifestyle changes appear to overcome their addiction. Others struggle throughout their lives, eventually dying without ever getting the help they need.

What Works For One Person, Doesn’t Work For Another

So how do you overcome addiction? There doesn’t seem to be an easy answer. Some swear by rehab, others by twelve step programs. Still others insist that it is a behavioral problem that can be fixed with rigid self-control or willingness to change.

While willingness to change is certainly a bonus, there are plenty of people out there who are tired of using and who have the willingness to do something different, yet find themselves back to square one again and again. Then there are those who show not a shred of willingness, yet leave rehab free of cravings and somehow achieve long-term recovery.

Some respond well to the twelve step community, others to a structured rehab program. Then there are those who go to rehab after rehab only to relapse and come back again.

Traditional rehab settings use a combination of individual and group therapy, psychoeducational groups, behavioral therapy, a structured, protected setting and a focus on accountability to get results. This does work for some people, but does not work for many more. Many find a combination of rehab and twelve step programs helps them to stay clean and sober.

The Introduction Of Holistic Therapies In Addiction Treatment

Addiction treatment has yet to come up with a consistent, proven, effective formula to help those who are addicted. The quality of treatment programs varies widely, and many are not using evidence-based treatments, nor do they offer comprehensive services. There are plenty of good treatment centers, though, that offer evidence-based treatments, quality therapy, comprehensive services, and many that also offer holistic therapies for their clients.

Holistic therapies are simply those that address the “whole” person. This includes physical, mental and emotional health. Holistic medicine isn’t just about treating a symptom, it’s about treating the person, and delving into the root causes of problems. Holistic addiction treatment does the same, with therapies that help the individual on multiple levels. Also, holistic treatments often include alternative therapies, some that are relatively new, and some that have been around for over a thousand years.

Acupuncture In Addiction Treatment

Acupuncture is a traditional Chinese medicine that is used to treat a wide variety of both physical and mental maladies. It may be used to alleviate pain, improve digestion, aid in sleep, fight depression, and more recently, help people who are struggling with addiction or who are in early recovery.

The practice consists of using the acupuncture needles in 3 to 5 spots around the ear. These particular pressure points, when stimulated, are believed to help reduce cravings, improve sleep, and improve kidney and liver function. This can aid the body in the detox process.

While there are plenty of skeptics out there, many people swear by acupuncture for addiction treatment, and more and more rehabs are offering this service. Clients and addiction professionals alike are singing the praises of this time-tested practice, stating that it helps newly recovering addicts feel better during the early phases of recovery. This is pretty big, if you think about it, because it is during this early phase that people tend to be the most vulnerable. They are more likely to leave treatment prematurely and relapse if they can’t get their cravings under control, or if they are overwhelmed with symptoms like insomnia, fatigue and depression. These happen to be common issues in treatment, as the client is often going through post-acute withdrawal syndrome (PAWS) theses symptoms can be quite severe, and can interfere with the recovery process.

Other holistic therapies that have been shown to help recovering addicts include yoga, meditation, massage therapy and nutrition therapy.

So, does acupuncture for addiction treatment work? Many think so, and research is looking into the claims that it is an effective treatment. So far, the jury is still out. Again, it may come down to the individual. Some may respond well to this type of treatment, while others won’t. While no one is suggesting that acupuncture be the only line of defense against withdrawal symptoms and cravings, there are those that believe that the recovering addict needs all the help they can get. And, it really can’t hurt.

Personally I can say it made a huge difference in my personal journey into recovery.  I found that it helped significantly with anxiety and Post Acute Withdrawal Syndrome.  I also suffered from a lot of stomach pain and insomnia I found relief relatively quickly.  I would highly recommend that anyone at least try it once you may be surprised at how much it helps.

Would you try acupuncture? Or have you had experience with it in the past? Do you think that it is a good addition to rehab therapies, or a waste of time?

Rose Lockinger is passionate member of the recovery community. A rebel who found her cause, she uses blogging and social media to raise the awareness about the disease of addiction. She has visited all over North and South America. Single mom to two beautiful children she has learned parenting is without a doubt the most rewarding job in the world. Currently the Outreach Director at Stodzy Internet Marketing.

You can find me on LinkedIn, Facebook, & Instagram

Saturday, June 18, 2016

WOMBAT Chat Tonight (Women's Only Chat) 9:00 EDT, 8:00 CDT, 7:00 MDT, 6:00 PDT

I'll be hanging out in the chatroom tonight if any of you WOMBATS want to join me. Remember this is a co-abs/mods chat, respect all other Wombats' choices.

Sunday, June 12, 2016

What Can We Do?


I find myself sitting and wondering what I can do, what can anyone do.


I can't do anything to change the hate that seems to be overrunning the world.

All I can change is myself.

I can love more deeply, more thoroughly and more openly.

I can be less judgmental.

I can be more forgiving.

I can say only good things, positive things, hopeful things.

I can work steadfastly at doing all this and removing whatever barriers hinder me.

I made a giant step forward when I decided to quit drinking five years ago, and I know, without a doubt, that if I hadn't done that I would be sitting here today hungover, unable to love myself as deeply as I know I can, unable to quit putting myself down as weak and hopeless, unable to forgive myself.  I wouldn't be able to summon one good, positive or hopeful thing to say about myself and my world today. I would be so wrapped up in my own pain and the futility of my own struggle that I couldn't fully feel others' pain. Or care enough to do anything. But drink more.

Thank God, that has  changed. Thank God I did as my friend, Jackie, over at Sassy Sober Living  talks about and got out of the f'ing box that alcohol put me and my life in.

Now, even in the midst of the darkest times, I have hope that I can make my world better.

It's what I can do.

Friday, June 10, 2016

I Think I'll Start Drinking Again...When Wine Comes From Cows

The other night at abs chat we had a familiar conversation. One of our members who has recently decided to quit drinking forever isn't enjoying it too much. She's depressed, she says, when she thinks of never, ever drinking again.

Some of us old timers did a virtual nod in commiseration.

We all race to type in, "That's why we don't say the word forever. We just take it that proverbial one day at a time."

It got me to thinking about what kind of circumstances would lead me to drink again. Then I got a little too excited and happy thinking about funerals and terminal diagnosis's so I quit thinking in that direction. 

I finally decided I could try drinking again when it held as much allure for me as MILK.

I don't hate milk. I just haven't drank it for about forty years. No, not even when I was pregnant or breast feeding, I just doubled up on the calcium supplement which might explain why my oldest son is in the medical journals as the youngest person with kidney stones. ;0

See, I could imagine visiting Wisconsin and not drinking milk, even though it is known worldwide for its milk.

I would have no problem going to a milk tasting and spitting out my "taste" before I moved on to the next frothy bottle of milk.

And, I'd have no problem taking a sip of milk from a wedding toast and then dumping the rest of it in a potted plant.

When I get to that level of disinterest in booze, then I might try drinking again.

I don't see it happening anytime soon.