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Post Info TOPIC: Courage to Change 8/10

~*Service Worker*~

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Posts: 698
Courage to Change 8/10

The writer shares how the way we keep our home shows the effects of living with alcoholism.  One person cannot feel comfortable unless his house is perfectly tidy, which makes him feel in control. Another person lives with clutter, which allows her to isolate and keep people at a distance.  The writer realizes that she is keeping a cluttered house, the same thing that bothered her growing up in an alcoholic home where she was ashamed to invite friends.

Today's reminder: By taking a fresh look at what I thought of as just a bad habit, I can free my life of some clutter today. I can consider hidden motives for that habit without condemning myself or my family. Clutter doesn?t have to be physical; I may also find areas of my mental, spiritual, or emotional life that are in disarray. I can heal without making moral judgment about myself or others.

Quote: "... the Al-Anon program can give me a new view of my world by helping me to see myself more clearly?" - One Day at a Time in Al-Anon


I really relate to this topic. My house wasn't cluttered, but it had been gradually taken over by someone else's needs that overshadowed my own needs.

For the past few years, I have been gradually renovating my home -- one room at a time.  This project is allowing me to make the home my own, after having felt uncomfortable there because of the disease.  As I work on each room, I have the opportunity to remove things that no longer serve me and fix defects that had irritated me for a long time.  Old possessions, old wiring, triggers of past pain, things that don't function well -- these defects can be removed, repaired, or replaced. Some things I have learned to fix on my own:  I acquired some tools and watched YouTube videos on how to do things. Like at an Al-Anon group meeting, I could watch someone who has done this before. I am proud that I learned how to install new doorknobs by myself!  

For other tasks I needed to employ special workers. There was the time I had to call a special worker to help me fix the mess I had created by trying to install a towel bar.  Not only did the towel bar fall off the wall after I installed it, but I had drilled into something I shouldn't have. I needed someone who had the right tools and perspective for this job.

Just when I think I am finished and there is no more to fix, I find another thing? often it?s an old piece of wiring for a system that isn't used any more, or a malfunctioning item that had been around so long I didn't even realize it wasn't serving me well.

Like the writer in C2C, I can see the parallel between this house project and my own personal renovation through Al-Anon.  I have gradually been able to move from the brink of insanity to the process of creating serenity for myself -- and I don't have to do the job alone.

-- Edited by Freetime on Friday 10th of August 2018 09:37:45 AM

-- Edited by Freetime on Friday 10th of August 2018 09:39:31 AM


~*Service Worker*~

Status: Offline
Posts: 1354

 Thanks Freetime... aww...

                                    ...the reading is slanted towards to women in the home- which is fine!

Long before reading this book I had learned 'to read between the lines'. To take what I liked and leave the rest. biggrin ...

My family home was full of clutter, as was the property. My parents were well respected- played golf and served on committees... but home was different.

And I bought this into my adult life too. My SO came from a similar background- so our acceptance of this- well no is caused shame and anger, really. It sure did... ...and it took years of patient ~letting go~ to gradually get things better.

I sometimes, still... feel that the programme isn't working fast enough!

I can take this to a step 10- to myself; and to a step 11- letting go...

...something I learned today- we do change- but unless we are in a group of some sort- there is no way of telling!

So this is the upside... of all the work at changing, and adapting... wink ...

thanks. smile ...


One day at a time.

~*Service Worker*~

Status: Online
Posts: 16485

Great reminder Freetime I like order and try hard to not impose it on others.  Program has  given me the ability to hire the experts to do a job and I am so grateful.

Thanks for your service and have a lovely day

-- Edited by hotrod on Friday 10th of August 2018 06:28:52 AM




~*Service Worker*~

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Posts: 1047

WOW!!! Freetime, great share...I downsized my home, tidied up and also deep cleaned..changed out some of the furniture with vintage pieces, Mrs. clean and tidy and order..which really is what I prefer

growing up, we lived in "near filth" my mother who was the alcoholic was horrid housekeeper..she DIDN"T clean, that was the problem..we kids got stuck with it and I resented doing "her work", but when I got out I found that dirt and filth and clutter and disorder was not my thing, but I wasn't really strict with it..I would let stuff go, but I noticed that where I eat, sleep and use the restroom had to be clean

As I evolve in my programme, I notice that I am very orderly and cleanliness is a must...I spend one day a week cleaning, general and then I'll really deep clean one room , say, each rid of tons of clutter, really downsized, streamlined the place.....I see the removal of "my clutter" was a manifestation of my getting rid of mental clutter as well....I am tidying up my mind, and it shows in my house...I really do think my home reflects my mental state...I am content and feel "safe" now with parting with things I just don't use, won't use and so give it up to a charity where someone CAN use new project is shoring up my aging chain link fence..i bought some T-posts to strengthen the fence where the poles are leaning some , hence leaving the chain link part (i don't have the top bar) is loose, so I've been tightening up my fence...then after that, its time to take on the car, LOL...its becoming a bit , messy, it does need a good vacuuming out and vinegar and water on the glass....I just hate any kind of "nasty" or "messy" even at work, my stuff is all organized and tidy....I must be healing because in the past, as long as I could find stuff, I was "OK" even tho it wasn't really orderly and clean....thats all changed....

thank you for this GREAT share.......I am really encouraged about my recovery progress, just lookin at how I live now as opposed to , yea, I can find stuff, but waaaay too much clutter and I wasn't the "mrs. clean" that I am now...I am more strict now, LOL......




~*Service Worker*~

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Posts: 9052

Thanks Freetime for your service, the daily and all the shares! I had to chuckle as I read this --- I am cleaning deeply as my parents are driving in - they arrive Sunday evening. I keep a clean house but I go the 'extra mile' when company is coming as I do believe a clean house is a great way to welcome visitors.

I am a self-professed pack-rat. I tend to have emotional ties to most things I hold on to - mostly from special people who've passed on or life events that make me smile from memories. I have been slowly purging as I plan to downsize - soon. If I had just me to consider, I'd have already moved to our smaller home. It's mostly renovated and mostly ready --- waiting for my AH to be ready to leave this larger home.

I am grateful that recovery has given me a new way to look at things. For a long time, this house made me sad as it's where I watched my boys self-destruct. I wanted to get out as fast as possible. Yet, I know now it's just a house, home is truly where the heart is. With letting go of the past, and focusing as suggested on the present, I could live in a tent in the back yard, and keep my serenity.

Happy Friday to all and a great weekend from my world to yours! I'm excited to see my parents and glad they're headed here. This will probably be my mom's last trip home and she still goes out with her high school friends (she's 83)....I am so grateful that I have the means to provide them a place to stay for as long as they want/need to to see all who they can. We've got a large family function next weekend to celebrate a great Aunt's 99th birthday, and I'm happy for my mom that she gets to come to it...

I'll be around less than usual for the next few weeks - (((hugs))) - as I play hostess with the mostess!! Ha.ha.ha.ha.ha....


Practice the PAUSE...Pause before judging.  Pause before assuming.  Pause before accusing.  Pause whenever you are about to react harshly and you will avoid doing and saying things you will later regret.  ~~~~  Lori Deschene



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