Traveling and Recovery

Hello Recovering People!

I have been traveling; so have not checked in for a while. Of all of the possible topics to discuss now, it seems that maintaining recovery while traveling could be useful. Spring break is coming up for those on a school schedule and others may be planning summer trips already.

In the past, my vacations were a product of my addiction, just like everything else. Continue reading

Recovery Step 12

Having Had a Spiritual Awakening 

“Having had a spiritual awakening as a result of these steps, we tried to carry this message to addicts, and to practice these principles in all our affairs.”

Spiritual awakening? What’s that? You know when you have had one, whether sudden, like a lightening bolt (hit’s forehead and says, ” I coulda’ had a V-8″, thinking, “why did this take me so long?”) or a gradual and subtle infusion of a sense of…connectedness. I am reminded of the cute little saying, “Life is what happens while you are making plans.” Similarly, a spiritual awakening is what happens while you are working the steps. We focus on working hard at the step in front of us, working them in order, struggling to “get a God”, making ourselves write out an inventory and look at resentments, gritting our teeth and looking at our part in these old and new struggles. Then we move on, with the help of a sponsor, someone who has worked the steps and had a serious and positive change in his or her life. We look more at ourselves, at traits we want to remove; we ask for God’s help in hitting “delete” on some of the stuff in our personality and behavior we find objectionable. Continue reading

Recovery Step 11

Improve Our Conscious Contact With God

“We sought through prayer and meditation to improve our conscious contact with God as we understood Him, praying only for knowledge of His will for us and the power to carry it out.”

We come into recovery with one of three positions on God.

  1. A belief that God exists, is good and can work positively in our lives.
  2. A lack of belief, or a belief that God does not exist or that we don’t know and don’t care.
  3. A belief that God exists and is not good or caring. We confuse God with Religion and may have been harmed in the name of Religion. We reject the concept that we can have a working relationship with a God who loves and cares for us. Continue reading

Happy New Year!!

Since my column is titled, Dr. Dawn’s Rx.  I thought I would write something at least tangentially medical on occasion. Now that 2013 is arriving, typical topics in meetings include new beginnings, resolutions, Step One, etc. Let’s have fun in this column starting the New Year by looking at and learning a bit more about how addiction specialists look at our disease. Below is the official short Definition of Addiction used by The American Society of Addiction Medicine

 The long definition covers about nine pages and can be found at the back of my book, From the Edge of the Cliff.

Short Definition of Addiction: “Addiction Continue reading

More on Holidays….aghhhh!!!

Author’s Note: I use the words alcoholic and addict almost interchangeably. An alcoholic is an alcohol addict and most likely capable of abusing more than just alcohol. The Narcotics Anonymous first Step tells us we are “Powerless over our addiction…”, which applies to every alcoholic and addict I know. I have not met any alcoholics who are powerless only over alcohol. I pray you will not take offense at the language I use in this column. If you do, please let me know your concerns… after you write a fourth Step and do a fifth Step with your sponsor on whatever is bothering you. Smile!  The Steps work on everything!

Small wonder many alcoholics and addicts mark their recovery date on or around January first. Many of us finally have had enough after going through yet another holiday season drunk, loaded, puking and/or passed out. Bad enough to not remember the parties and family time, but often we do huge damage. For compulsive overeaters, this is an especially difficult time and enormous weight gain is common. Continue reading