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Old 03-11-2013, 08:02 PM
  # 141 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by soberlicious View Post
Well, there is another big difference, Robby, that you see a difference between abstinence and AA sobriety. The way I see it, you use the 12 steps to better your life the same way I study Buddhism to better mine.
Exactly! I indeed use the 12 steps to better my life, and also becaue i honestly have an agreement that I do have an illness of alcoholism, as defined by AA. The definition rings all my addiction bells, and floats my recovery boat even in the most perfect storm situations.

Originally Posted by soberlicious
People can and do stagnate all the time. It has nothing to do with whether one has ever been addicted. Not growing and learning would not take me back to the bottle, but it would certainly make me unhappy.

OK, Robby, I understand your explanation of what you got goin' on...all except this:

You said this...
Originally Posted by Robby
AA did not help me quit, and I've never used AA to quit drinking.
and then you said this...
Originally Posted by Robby
I would return to drinking without the 12 steps to keep my alcoholism in remission,

I understand that you see your AA sobriety and non-drinking as 2 different things, but I don't understand what you mean in the above statements.
My AA sobriety is conditional on my belief in the veracity of my alcoholism illness. They are both faces of the same coin, for me. I can't have AA sobriety without having AA alcoholism... so... the only answer then is the actual real life practice of the entire 12 steps in all my affairs of my day to day living, and this for the rest of my life, unless I want to risk my alcoholism becoming active again. So, in this way, I would of course be in great dire straits, and drunk, if I quit my 12 steps.

I don't need meetings to work my steps. I don't need a supernatural deity either. My sobriety is entirely an inside job. This is why my AA sobriety is not contingent on my spiritual fitness, but the other way around.

As another example, I'm a Christian now that I'm sober, but if I got drunk, my Christianity would be false to me, without hesitation, same as it was before I got sober. God did not keep me sober back then, and he would not, and does not now, either.

Originally Posted by soberlicious
I have always been what others consider agonostic, but it wasn't until I quit that I began to be able to fully embrace nontheism. Being a drunk wasn't blocking my spirituality, since I wasn't ever spiritual, but when I was a drunk, I was disconnected from others and from myself. That, for me, was the equivalent of what others would call "spiritually sick".
I can grokk that, no problemo

Originally Posted by soberlicious
I don't consider myself an AAer nor an AVRTer even though I understand both paradigms. My mind does work in a more AVRTish way. I do however practice righting my wrongs, looking at my actions each day, and helping others and those are considered AAish things, but AA can't lay claim to the wisdom in the 12 steps, that's age old. Bill W just synthesized that wisdom and focused it toward ending addiction...Trimpey did the same.

For me one of the biggest differences is that AA is a "design for living"...AVRT is not. So in comparing them, it's like apples and oranges.
Awesome. Well said. I agree.
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Old 03-11-2013, 08:08 PM
  # 142 (permalink)  
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how does one practice ODAAT and have a BP simultaneously?soberlicious,
i'm one who neither made a BP nor did the ODAAT thing. i had a turn-around waking up-thing, got it on a to-me-new level that i was a drunk, and haven't drank since.
i did see it in terms of a forever thing. on one of my first days, i went to an on-line chat-room, and mentioned the "forever" since i was trying to wrap my head around that, and was told i didn't need to think about that right now. but i did. i needed to be really clear on that, for myself. (this was NO?T an AA chat-room, btw.)
ODAAT seemed like it would just immediately get me into "yeah okay, i can drink tomorrow" mode. seemed ridiculous.
in the meantime, i see that what i actually DO is of course one day at a time, as today is the only day i can do anything in.
so, in effect, i "practice" one day at a time ....practice is the word you used, and it fits well. the implementation of anything, any kind of plan, can only be this day at a time. i cannot practice tomorrow's plan today.
so, no conflict.
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Old 03-11-2013, 10:00 PM
  # 143 (permalink)  
 
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I can't have AA sobriety without having AA alcoholism... so... the only answer then is the actual real life practice of the entire 12 steps in all my affairs of my day to day living, and this for the rest of my life, unless I want to risk my alcoholism becoming active again. So, in this way, I would of course be in great dire straits, and drunk, if I quit my 12 steps.
I don't need a supernatural deity either. My sobriety is entirely an inside job.
Your sobriety is an inside job that does not rely on a supernatural deity, but does rely on living the entire 12 steps, 6 of which reference a supernatural deity directly.
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Old 03-11-2013, 10:22 PM
  # 144 (permalink)  
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Even though I'm completely all-in for a lifetime of not drinking, we can only take action and make decisions in the present moment. We live our lives out as they unfold, and in that way we cycle thru day and night, day after day, on such a natural cycle of sleep and wakefulness. Completely natural.

That is as far as I go with ODAAT.

As for what I believe, think, feel, imagine, hope, etc. all of this is not boxed-in by time. On my insides, all time is relative to my experiences, and not confined to my flesh and blood limitations.
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Old 03-11-2013, 10:24 PM
  # 145 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by soberlicious View Post
Your sobriety is an inside job that does not rely on a supernatural deity, but does rely on living the entire 12 steps, 6 of which reference a supernatural deity directly.
No. The steps allow an HP of mine own understanding. My understanding of my HP does not require a supernatural deity.

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Old 03-11-2013, 11:17 PM
  # 146 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by RobbyRobot View Post
I must always live by and practice my AA 12 steps, as I have come to understand them, or else I will absolutely return to drinking. No exceptions for this condition. I do the steps, or I lose my AA sobriety, because my AA alcoholism is kept in remission because of my practice of the entire 12 steps.

No program, and my alcoholic mind would not long be still asleep, and when it came back on line, my present psyche would be struggling for its life against my alcoholism. If I continued to not do the entire 12 steps thereafter, I would absolutely return to drinking.

So, I've made it clear, twice over, that I would return to drinking without the 12 steps to keep my alcoholism in remission
Thanks for making this clear, Robby.

I have another question related to a topic I brought up a little while back. I mentioned that I truly cannot recall the actual sensation of being under the influence of alcohol any more, and I'm not sure when or how fast I lost that memory, but I think it was a long time ago.

You said you can still recall the actual sensations of being under the influence after 30+ years. Could you confirm that for me because I'm thinking how that works and what it implies might make it a topic worth researching.
GT
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Old 03-12-2013, 12:37 AM
  # 147 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by GerandTwine View Post
Thanks for making this clear, Robby.

I have another question related to a topic I brought up a little while back. I mentioned that I truly cannot recall the actual sensation of being under the influence of alcohol any more, and I'm not sure when or how fast I lost that memory, but I think it was a long time ago.

You said you can still recall the actual sensations of being under the influence after 30+ years. Could you confirm that for me because I'm thinking how that works and what it implies might make it a topic worth researching.
GT
I have a similar question Robbie and I hope you are not offended by it. After 30+ years of being sober, what makes you so active and involved with the recovery process? I thought (or "hoped" is a better word) that after a few years, the desire for drinking fades away, we finally accept that we can't drink again and it becomes something normal; like a person with peanut allergy simply doesn't eat peanuts, instead of thinking daily about it.

After just 1,5 year I am noticing that my thoughts about drinking are becoming less and less frequent. In the beginning I had thoughts like: "Oh, I wish I could have drink while watching this movie" but now it hardly ever occurs again and when it does it's just countered by my version of the No. Walking past a liquor store was difficult for me, now I call it the legal drugs den and walk past by it smiling.

Isn't the addiction to alcohol replaced with the need to perfectionism of recovery? So instead of being recovered, a person remains in recovery, daily thinking about their alcoholism?

A lot of persons I know just quit without a program and are successful by simply accepting that they can't ever drink again. I just hope it will be the same for me.
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Old 03-12-2013, 02:10 AM
  # 148 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by Geralt View Post
I have a similar question Robbie and I hope you are not offended by it. After 30+ years of being sober, what makes you so active and involved with the recovery process? I thought (or "hoped" is a better word) that after a few years, the desire for drinking fades away, we finally accept that we can't drink again and it becomes something normal; like a person with peanut allergy simply doesn't eat peanuts, instead of thinking daily about it.



That's a good question. I quit in 2008 and I often wonder why I still find the topic so interesting to talk about. I drank for over 3 decades, lived thru the good, bad and ugly sides of it all and don't see the point in trying to act like that part of my life never happened. It would be cool to see how others feel about it.
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Old 03-12-2013, 07:19 AM
  # 149 (permalink)  
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It's a fine foggy morning here in the Boston area. Melissa and I drove up from Ottawa Sunday. I just had corrective surgery for carpal tunnel syndrome done on my left hand 4 weeks ago. Its healing nicely, and on March 25th I'll have the other hand done. Its a great relief from the pain. Walking on crutches to get around for me complicated my recovery.

I'm kinda limited in how much I can hobble about, since I can't for now bear any weight on my left palm, and soon on my right palm as well. It all goes to my underarms. I've used crutches my whole life, and this is the first time I'm so awkward on them, lol. I have a great little scooter in Ottawa that I use indoors. It's a big house with a huge basement. We even just installed an elevator, lol, so I don't fall down the stairs. Purchased the scooter last month so as to help with the healing. Awesome.

For those who don't know, I'm an amputee, and I have post-polio syndrome, I no longer walk unless I'm using crutches. I had polio as a young child, grew up with a flail and paralysed right leg. I wore a steel n leather leg brace. Things went decidely south for me age 12 with some "bad" surgery and I drank to be elsewhere and not myself. It worked all to well, unfortunately.

Just a bit of background so as to better answer these great questions. Thanks.

Originally Posted by GerandTwine View Post
I have another question related to a topic I brought up a little while back. I mentioned that I truly cannot recall the actual sensation of being under the influence of alcohol any more, and I'm not sure when or how fast I lost that memory, but I think it was a long time ago.

You said you can still recall the actual sensations of being under the influence after 30+ years. Could you confirm that for me because I'm thinking how that works and what it implies might make it a topic worth researching.
GT
Yeah, I remember the topic too. Yeah, I can confirm I still remember being under the influence. I also can remember being between drinks too, wanting to be drunk. As well, I can remember my struggles fighting against myself, my Beast, my alcoholic mind in my first 2 years of sobriety too.

For the initial start just after quitting, the "remembering" was forced and involuntary. As I progressed, this came more and more under my control. The first year I was gaining rapidly, and I could will it to silence if I was having a great day otherwise. Before the end of my second year, I had total control, and free choice of when I remembered. I can turn it off and on at will, no problemo.

I'm sure this has to do somewhat with my understanding of having an illness of alcoholism. My AVRT always "sees" my alcoholism, and that is no surprise that I've learned to tune in and out from that particular AV "noise"

So, what interesting implications are you seeing as topical?

Thanks for the question, GT.


-------------------

Hi, Geralt. Thanks for the conversation. Good questions.


Originally Posted by Geralt View Post
I have a similar question Robbie and I hope you are not offended by it. After 30+ years of being sober, what makes you so active and involved with the recovery process? I thought (or "hoped" is a better word) that after a few years, the desire for drinking fades away, we finally accept that we can't drink again and it becomes something normal; like a person with peanut allergy simply doesn't eat peanuts, instead of thinking daily about it.
I sobered up age 24 in 1981, and ended up working in the addictions field myself for almost twenty years. I'm no way as active these past years as I was back when, lol. I gave alot of service back then, and its been returned to me in many beautiful and awesome ways, but those days were hard and I've lost many people I loved. I worked from the street level up, so to speak, with the hard-hearted and hopelessly lost individuals who ALL wanted a better life then they had with drinking and drugging. They identified with me, and I was a kinda "if he can do it, so can we" kinda guy for most of them. Its not easy to earn the trust of street-wise guys, but once you do, its for life, come hell or high water. Within the window of their trust, I helped them come up for air, and be honest with themselves on doing the next right thing. Some of them moved on, some of them didn't. Street-level outreaches are what they are by nature. For myself, I'm more an exception than the rule of somebody who has successfully quit the street-life and done good with myself. My service to others is what made the difference, imo. This paved the path for me to walk out of my past misery and into a better reality of caring for my fellow man and woman.

So, short story answer. I hope it gives some idea of my interest in say, SR for instance. I do need to say as well, I don't suffer from wantings, or cravings, obsessions, what-have-you. I'm free and happy and very fortunate to have the life I live. I'm mostly retired at 55. I drive fast cars (Nissan 370Z 2012 Roadster) and I have awesome vacations with my loving Melissa, my wife. We have two homes, all paid. I'm debt free actually. When I last sobered up, I had a garbage bag of clothes, and an acoustic guitar, and an alcoholic schizophrenic mind. I've come a long way, baby. Pretty good for a guy who never finished academic school. I guess I took my classes elsewhere


Originally Posted by Geralt
After just 1,5 year I am noticing that my thoughts about drinking are becoming less and less frequent. In the beginning I had thoughts like: "Oh, I wish I could have drink while watching this movie" but now it hardly ever occurs again and when it does it's just countered by my version of the No. Walking past a liquor store was difficult for me, now I call it the legal drugs den and walk past by it smiling.

Isn't the addiction to alcohol replaced with the need to perfectionism of recovery? So instead of being recovered, a person remains in recovery, daily thinking about their alcoholism?

A lot of persons I know just quit without a program and are successful by simply accepting that they can't ever drink again. I just hope it will be the same for me.
I hope you get what you're seeking, Geralt. Its entirely possible, of course. Go for it. For me, I'm not "recovering" anymore. I was in my first three months or so of course, and perhaps up to even my first year on some points of interest. Having said that, I'm a completely recovered alcoholic drug addict, for decades now. I couldn't be more recovered from my past alcoholic life. As I said earlier, I've come a long way since my drinking and drugging daze. Yeah, I'm absolutely and hopelessly "recovered"


------------


Hey, BTSO.


Originally Posted by BackToSquareOne View Post
That's a good question. I quit in 2008 and I often wonder why I still find the topic so interesting to talk about. I drank for over 3 decades, lived thru the good, bad and ugly sides of it all and don't see the point in trying to act like that part of my life never happened. It would be cool to see how others feel about it.
Yeah. Awesome, BTSO. I won't act as if my past life never happened either. There are many ways to appreciate our past without harming ourselves. Forgetting is not an option for me. Forgetting selectively makes some sense of course. Generalising my past life so as to say, "See, I've left it all behind me. I'm new and improved! How grand, eh?" is not for me, and would in fact cut out of me the foundations of who I am. I'm the me I am today not because of my past failures hanging around my neck like a pork-chop for the street dogs to play with; but much more because of my creating success from the collective dust and ashes of my past failures. Opportunity knocked, and I answered in spite of my challenges, failures, foolishness, fears. I'm proud of where I have come from, and shame and guilt be damned. Thanks, BTSO.

--------

Thanks!
I hope I've cleared things up some.
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Old 03-12-2013, 01:03 PM
  # 150 (permalink)  
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Now THIS 'floats my recovery boat'!

[Editor's Note, how to get that neat box around quotes?]

Robby said:
"I don't act as if my past life never happened either. There are many ways to appreciate our past without harming ourselves. Forgetting is not an option for me. Forgetting selectively makes some sense of course. Generalising my past life so as to say, "See, I've left it all behind me. I'm new and improved! How grand, eh?" is not for me, and would in fact cut out of me the foundations of who I am. I'm the me I am today not because of my past failures hanging around my neck like a pork-chop for the street dogs to play with; but much more because of my creating success from the collective dust and ashes of my past failures. Opportunity knocked, and I answered in spite of my challenges, failures, foolishness, fears. I'm proud of where I have come from, and shame and guilt be damned."

Last edited by bemyself; 03-12-2013 at 01:06 PM. Reason: quote codes
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Old 03-12-2013, 01:39 PM
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Well, I don't act like that my part of my life never happened, but by the same token I also don't think there is something mysteriously different about me because I was addicted to booze and pills. One of the main reasons I quit attending recovery group meetings was the whole wearing-addiction-like-a-badge-of-honor, the mentality that the rest of the world just doesn't get it...or get "people like us". I don't dig that. at all.
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Old 03-12-2013, 01:51 PM
  # 152 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by soberlicious View Post
well, i don't act like that my part of my life never happened, but by the same token i also don't think there is something mysteriously different about me because i was addicted to booze and pills. One of the main reasons i quit attending recovery group meetings was the whole wearing-addiction-like-a-badge-of-honor, the mentality that the rest of the world just doesn't get it...or get "people like us". I don't dig that. At all.
yes!
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Old 03-12-2013, 02:01 PM
  # 153 (permalink)  
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Yeah, I'm not a flag waver for the cause of "we're different and special" either. Some folks like to really be part of something exclusive though, and its really not important to me.

As individuals we're all unique enough already, is my understanding. I'm more a loner then anything else, and it suits me well enough. Having said that, I'm certainly different for my experiences then I would have been without my experiences... we all are of course.
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Old 03-12-2013, 02:10 PM
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I'm certainly different for my experiences then I would have been without my experiences
one can never be "without experiences"...unless they're dead...and some would even debate that
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Old 03-12-2013, 02:18 PM
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Oh, yesssss!

Blake's 'Songs of Innocence and Experience' immediately came to mind....(mutter mutter mutter, must re-read it)
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Old 03-12-2013, 02:54 PM
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Originally Posted by bemyself View Post
[Editor's Note, how to get that neat box around quotes?]
You can use the "Quote" button in the lower right hand corner of the post you are quoting and then delete the unwanted text, or you can use the bb code {quote} The Text You Want In The Box **/quote}

EXCEPT, instead of using ** } to surround quote and /quote, you use [ ]

[/lesson]
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Old 03-12-2013, 03:10 PM
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You can also type {quote=bemyself} Copy and paste desired text **/quote}

Originally Posted by bemyself
Copy and pasted text
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Old 03-12-2013, 05:05 PM
  # 158 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by RobbyRobot View Post
Originally Posted by GerandTwine
I have another question related to a topic I brought up a little while back. I mentioned that I truly cannot recall the actual sensation of being under the influence of alcohol any more, and I'm not sure when or how fast I lost that memory, but I think it was a long time ago.

You said you can still recall the actual sensations of being under the influence after 30+ years. Could you confirm that for me because I'm thinking how that works and what it implies might make it a topic worth researching.
GT
Yeah, I remember the topic too. Yeah, I can confirm I still remember being under the influence. I also can remember being between drinks too, wanting to be drunk. As well, I can remember my struggles fighting against myself, my Beast, my alcoholic mind in my first 2 years of sobriety too.

For the initial start just after quitting, the "remembering" was forced and involuntary. As I progressed, this came more and more under my control. The first year I was gaining rapidly, and I could will it to silence if I was having a great day otherwise. Before the end of my second year, I had total control, and free choice of when I remembered. I can turn it off and on at will, no problemo.

I'm sure this has to do somewhat with my understanding of having an illness of alcoholism. My AVRT always "sees" my alcoholism, and that is no surprise that I've learned to tune in and out from that particular AV "noise"

So, what interesting implications are you seeing as topical?

Thanks for the question, GT.
Thanks!
I hope I've cleared things up some.
Actually, I'm not sure you've cleared it up. What I have forgotten is THE MEMORY OF THE ACTUAL SENSATION OF BEING UNDER THE INFLUENCE. Not the memories that I was under the influence, or how I behaved, or where I was, or all that stuff. Just the memory of the SENSATION of being high or drunk. I can't remember WHAT IT FELT LIKE.

Can you remember what it actually FELT LIKE to be high or drunk?
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Old 03-12-2013, 05:14 PM
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Originally Posted by GerandTwine View Post
Actually, I'm not sure you've cleared it up. What I have forgotten is THE MEMORY OF THE ACTUAL SENSATION OF BEING UNDER THE INFLUENCE. Not the memories that I was under the influence, or how I behaved, or where I was, or all that stuff. Just the memory of the SENSATION of being high or drunk. I can't remember WHAT IT FELT LIKE.

Can you remember what it actually FELT LIKE to be high or drunk?
Like I said, YES I CAN.

Originally Posted by RobbyRobot View Post
Yeah, I can confirm I still remember being under the influence. I also can remember being between drinks too, wanting to be drunk.
So, yeah. I can remember my feelings of my intoxication, in a physical sense, not simply a mental construct. With "feelings" and "headspace"

Can't be clearer then what I've already said.

And so now what?

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Old 03-12-2013, 07:00 PM
  # 160 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by RobbyRobot View Post
Like I said, YES I CAN.



So, yeah. I can remember my feelings of my intoxication, in a physical sense, not simply a mental construct. With "feelings" and "headspace"

Can't be clearer then what I've already said.

And so now what?

I have some ideas why this might be a topic worth studying, but before I go and narrow the field I'm hoping others will give their input.
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