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Old 04-16-2014, 05:01 PM
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Ann
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What You Do Next

Wednesday, April 16, 2014
What you do next

Donít define yourself by your past. Define yourself by your possibilities.

The version of you that now matters is the version of you going forward. See your life in those terms, from that perspective.

The only thing that can really hold you back is your reluctance to fulfill your best possibilities. Though progress is rarely easy, it is always possible.

You cannot just walk away from the obligations youíve incurred in the past. However, you absolutely can choose to honor those obligations by going above and beyond them.

No matter what the past has been, today is an opportunity. You are alive, capable, motivated and in a position to make a positive difference in some way.

Look forward, see that opportunity, and dive into the fulfillment of it. What really matters now is what you do next, so make it something great.

ó Ralph Marston
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Old 04-16-2014, 05:04 PM
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Ann
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Don’t define yourself by your past. Define yourself by your possibilities.
I love this reading today and brought it here to ponder with all of you.

Sometimes I get so stuck in my past, regretting my mistakes and wishing things had turned out different...but when I do I lose all the joy in today and the dreams of tomorrow.

I am older than many of you here, hell, I am older than most of you here, but the possibilities for my future are endless and I plan to spend the days ahead following my new dreams.

One is to learn to dive and then to dive off Key West this coming winter. I have always wanted to do that and have been too afraid. No more, fear doesn't run my life anymore and I hope to find great beauty under the sea.

How about you? What are the possibilities you would like to fulfill?

Let's dream and share and then make our dreams come true, because darn it, we've waited far too long.

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Old 04-16-2014, 06:03 PM
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Ann,

I love your idea of learning to dive! There are some wonderful underwater cameras so you would find a whole new world to click and capture in the Keys. I'm looking forward to seeing your pictures - experiencing the underwater world off Key Largo was high in my list of all time favorite things.

Many of my passions are things I do alone. None of the folks I am closest to who live near me share my interests. I am comfortable alone, but need to challenge myself to engage more and interact with people - meet folks who share my interests. One of my goals this year is to participate in a few triathlons at the beach this summer. I have been a runner for most of this decade, but I need to build up my distance swimming endurance. I love the ocean, but I usually only swim out to catch a wave to ride in. So I recently joined the pool at a local college and swim several mornings a week. When the weather warms I hope to join the Tri club for their mile ocean swims and hopefully meet some great folks. I love regaining my passion for swimming and how relaxing and soothing it is to my soul.
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Old 04-16-2014, 06:06 PM
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Ann,
I love that reading too. I have given it some thought, to see what sort of possibilities I see for myself.

I have many regrets, and much grief over things , some my fault, some not. I have come to see that I spend too much time, too much thought of me, me, me.
Time to stop that, I am tired of grieving the past.

My children often express that they want me to be happy again, like I used to be.They want me to do the things I used to love to do. So, my goal would be to find the joy again.

I want to give, want my children to learn something good from me, how to be happy, in spite of life's problems. Give them a happy mom.... that would be a nice unselfish gift, I think.

my girls are so intuitive where I am concerned. I guess it isn't hard to see that I have become depressed, even though I thought I was putting on a good front.


Diving, how exciting! Ann. Now that is a goal! I can't imagine the beauty of seeing it first hand.
You are right. We lose the joy of today, if we are stuck in the sadness of the past.
I want to claim all the joy I can find!

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Old 04-16-2014, 06:10 PM
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Ann
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We're both water people, Greet, I think that is a big part of the reason I am overcoming my fear.

Like you, I am happy on my own but some things are more fun when done and shared with others.

I couldn't dream when I was stuck in my codependency and fear. It is very freeing to plan my dreams now and fulfill them.

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Old 04-16-2014, 06:14 PM
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Oh I hope you find your joy again, Chic, it will make your children happy but more than that...it will set you free!

Sometimes we just need to let go of the fear and just DO.

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Old 04-16-2014, 08:22 PM
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Thank you Ann for such a thought provoking post. I have no answer at the time though and I am now riddled with fear that I will stay up all night pondering it. You did say you were available 24/7 though, right? So, if you hear a little tap on your bedroom window tonight, please don't call the police, it will just be little ole me needing to talk. Thank you again.
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Old 04-17-2014, 05:13 PM
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As codies we tend to love others based on possibilities/potential. But not ourselves. It seems that while mired down in this bog, we see the shiz that we're in...scary. we look to the addict as full of potential and used to be's..if only xyz...remember when...that dashed dream of the future??? Why is it so hard to award those thoughts to ourselves? We are worth it, right?
It's hard to live there when we take care of so much if the present unpleasantness.
Hn.
thanks Ann...I think I needed to think this.
c
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Old 04-17-2014, 07:30 PM
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Originally Posted by cheekie View Post
As codies we tend to love others based on possibilities/potential. But not ourselves. It seems that while mired down in this bog, we see the shiz that we're in...scary. we look to the addict as full of potential and used to be's..if only xyz...remember when...that dashed dream of the future??? Why is it so hard to award those thoughts to ourselves? We are worth it, right?
It's hard to live there when we take care of so much if the present unpleasantness.
Hn.
thanks Ann...I think I needed to think this.
c

So true, but like with all addictions, we have a choice to seek recovery. I wished it was easier, I wish there was a magic wand. But it takes hard work and commitment but we ARE worth it.
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Old 04-17-2014, 07:51 PM
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Thanks for posting this Ann, it sure has got me thinking! The first thing that comes to mind is that I want to continue working on myself and my recovery so that I can get to a place where I feel capable and competent enough to help others who are struggling. I have been attending my local AA fellowship for about 3 months now and I'm ready to choose my sponsor and get to work.

I was asked to chair our Men's meeting next wed and I look forward to getting a chance to tell my story in hopes that I can touch someone and show them that they can get sober and live a more fulfilling life. While I still have a lot of work to do, these past 21 months sober and 16 1/2 months free from pot have really shown me that the possibilities are almost endless!

Good Luck in your future diving adventures!
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Old 04-18-2014, 06:09 AM
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Ann
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Thanks all for the inspiring words.

My mother used to have a plate that hung on her kitchen wall, it read "You've Got To Have A Dream Before It Can Come True".

I think of that often. I think of that when I don't see my life going anywhere or when I think I have run out of dreams, especially in my darker days of codependence.

When I found my balance again in recovery, in my meetings and here, I once again saw the "possibilities", the "ya know, maybe I CAN's" and the "just do it's" and set my sights on making some new dreams come true.

I took up photography because I love nature and that inspired me to go find it, even by myself some days. That led me to becoming a birder, watching and identifying many different birds here and in the south where I winter. That led me to bigger nature, like gators and manatee and dolphins and panthers and bobcats...really beautiful creatures that make my heart gasp with joy.

Each dream leads to another, each possibility brings more opportunties, and each one of these helped me overcome the fear I carried for so long. I wasted too much time in the darkness of fear and will spend whatever remaining days I have in the joy of adventure and discovery and making more dreams come true. I better have a lot of days/years/decades left...it's a big and beautiful world, all mine to discover.

And..all of this...each step of the journey...depends on what I do next...what I choose and commit to doing with my life.

None of us has to stay stuck, I know because nobody was ever more stuck than I was and somehow, by the grace of God, I became unstuck and found a light I could follow called recovery and 12 little steps that would guide me my entire life.

Happy Easter dear friends, take time to decide what you will do next, then make a commitment to yourself to do it. You CAN if you believe in yourself and your dreams. Our dreams no longer depend on anyone else but ourselves to fulfill them.

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Old 04-18-2014, 06:25 AM
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Originally Posted by Ann View Post
The version of you that now matters is the version of you going forward.
I needed to read that part today. Thanks
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