Gratitudes Jan 31

  1. That I am fine after yesterday’s trauma
  2. I’m so grateful that last night, after a day of sobbing, I had relief.
  3. I’m so grateful for this new day
  4. And to wake up and BE grateful for the new day.
  5. M just called – said pack a bag and make sure birds have enough stay here if snow – SO nice. Good. Comforting.
  6. And I will do it
  7. Today’s readings
  8. and especially that last line: Use your time, wherever you are, to nourish and heal yourself.
  9. It *also* makes me feel less alone.
  10. My friendship with A. SO grateful not gone!
  11. My friendship with Jo
  12. Although it was difficult, I’m very grateful for our talk yesterday
  13. The police where I live. Helping with that man on my property omg
  14. That I am the first teacher invited to this district committee. In lie quarter of a century! Yay me
  15. That I helped Je get a job
  16. I’m grateful for all my opportunities
  17. for my education
  18. which my parents paid for
  19. for the braces i had
  20. which they also paid for
  21. for the piano lessons
  22. they paid for for so long
  23. my birdies
  24. that they ate and flew and played yesterday a lot
  25. and chirped of course
  26. the *different* sounds they make – can give away their mood…
  27. books
  28. sleep!
  29. coffee
  30. I am healthy. “When you have your health, you have everything.”
  31. My uncles always saying that
  32. parties I’ve had fun at
  33. Pretty dresses I’ve owned
  34. WW
  35. OA
  36. eyesight!
  37. fresh water!
  38. my new water bottle BPA free and has an infuser
  39. I *loved* my water yesterday with fresh lime in it 🙂
  40. My little ice pack things for my lunch bag
  41. Salads.
  42. chickpeas
  43. Lentils
  44. Fruit
  45. Whole grain and whole wheat breads
  46. I not only have all the organs I need
  47. I even have hair! (I have 2 female friends who don’t – due to alopecia)
  48. 12-Step programs
  49. Sitcoms
  50. Piano
  51. Rachmaninoff
  52. And O introducing me to his music to play
  53. Schumann
  54. And O introducing me to his music to play
  55. Biographies
  56. This laptop
  57. Lights. I am so grateful for electricity and lights
  58. and heat
  59. grateful for the special like sun lamp for the birds
  60. and pellets
  61. and treats
  62. and fresh organic leafy greens for them too
  63. and water for them
  64. and that I did a good cage-cleanout yesterday
  65. grateful for every day that I make the bed (I am supposed to leave it unmade sometimes due to allergies)
  66. Grateful that my house is neat and in order. I remember when it was a horror
  67. Grateful for showers
  68. and baths
  69. I remember during my injury when I really couldn’t
  70. grateful that I can walk. I remember when I couldn’t
  71. Also remember when didn’t sleep. After many months, the night I got 1 hour 40 minutes and I was so happy because that meant someday I’d get 2 hours etc etc. and now I sleep every night all night. So grateful for that.
  72. That maybe I can help others even more
  73. That I can read
  74. That I have a good job
  75. That I have health insurance. I pay a lot, but at leastI have it
  76. That I lived fine through my surgeries
  77. My breath used to be SO shallow. And now it comes all the way in! Grateful for that!
  78. I am grateful for the coooked veggies in my fridge right now that I made
  79. That my laundry is done
  80. Jo’s company yesterday
  81. His hugs when I was so upset too
  82. And later when I wasn’t
  83. Hope
  84. Who knows what the future holds. And – living in the moment
  85. I have sat with Thich Nhat Hanh!
  87. 3 retreats here in USA
  88. One in London ❤
  89. And one day at a theater in NYC
  90. I am grateful that I have this day of functioning with full brain and heart and mind and body and spirituality at a nice job, in front of me.
  91. I’m grateful for the friendship of D
  92. And L
  93. And St
  94. And Tr
  95. SO grateful for the aides in my room! It is wonderful in there!
  96. And so grateful that *they’re* happy there too!
  97. laughter
  98. smiles
  99. my eyes that smile
  100. my feet and legs don’t hurt so much now!


Readings Jan 31

For Today:

To say yes, you have to sweat and roll up your sleeves and plunge both hands into life up to the elbows. It is easy to say no, even if saying no means death. Jean Anouilh

It takes no effort, no risk, no investment of myself to stand back and not participate. There is no chance of being disappointed. Oh yes, I can look on, criticize a little, give advice. Not today! Today I choose to shout YES to life, to take whatever comes my way – indeed, to go out of my way. By forgetting myself, I can feel and not be afraid, experience and not regret, make decisions and not worry. I throw old cautions to the wind – some may even call me foolhardy – but I know I am not alone; I have a Higher Power to keep me balanced.

For today: I put aside old habits of negativity so I can experience a new closeness to others, to the present, to myself. I exchange my “Yes, but” for “Why not?”

My takeaway: I used to say no to life by hiding out in the den afraid of so much. Just eating and tv and sort of hiding out. So much less so now! Yay!

How to Eat:


In the original Five Contemplations as they were recited during the Buddha’s time, food was considered to be medicine. But I think that when the Buddha received good food, he also enjoyed it. I don’t think he thought of it as just taking medicine. We know the food nourished our bodies. But we can also appreciate and savor our food.

My takeaway is not just savor, but is think of food as medicine and eat that kind of good food more and everything else less!

Voices of Recovery:

“Just for Today.” – Program slogan

“Just for today” is one of the program slogans that works for me. It is even better than “one day at a time” because that suggests another day coming. Sometimes, today is as much as I can handle. As the pamphlet says, “I can do things for one day that I couldn’t begin to think of doing for any length of time, not even one more day.” At times, I have had to say to myself, “only four, three, two more hours until I go to bed, close my eyes, don’t have to talk to one more person or do one more thing.” It is a sublimely peaceful feeling to reach the end of that one day, to be finished.

“Just for today” also helps me avoid the notion that I have some space from my disease if I have a few days, weeks, or months of abstinence in a row. When the days run together and I get farther from my last compulsive bite, I can begin to think that I have somehow “made it” or that I’ve reached a safe distance from my disease. Nothing could be further from the truth. I am as close to taking that first compulsive bite today as I was on the day I came into program if I am not living in the present and aware that I am a compulsive overeater. “Just for today” reminds me that today is all I have.

My takeaway: Good. Hopeful. As far as eating goes – BUT *I* must be careful not to live this way in terms of life! Like not, “get through the day and you can sleep” aka hideout from life.



…we aren’t a glum lot. If newcomers could see no joy or fun in our existence, they wouldn’t want it. We absolutely insist on enjoying life. We try not to indulge in cynicism over the state of the nations, nor do we carry the world’s troubles on our shoulders. Alcoholics Anonymous, p. 132

When my own house is in order, I find the different parts of my life are more manageable. Stripped from the guilt and remorse that cloaked my drinking years, I am free to assume my proper role in the universe, but this condition requires maintenance. I should stop and ask myself, Am I having fun yet? If I find answering that question difficult or painful, perhaps I’m taking myself too seriously – and finding it difficult to admit that I’ve strayed from my practice of working the program to keep my house in order. I think the pain I experience is one way my Higher Power has to get my attention, coaxing me to take stock of my performance. The slight time and effort it takes to work the program – a spot-check inventory, for example, or the making of amends, whatever is appropriate – are well worth the effort.

My takeaway:


As Bill Sees It:

We Cannot Stand Still

In the first days of A.A., I wasn’t much bothered about the areas of life in which I was standing still. There was always the alibi: “After all,” I said to myself, “I’m far too busy with much more important matters.” That was my near perfect prescription for comfort and complacency.

How many of us would presume to declare, “Well, I’m sober and I’m happy. What more can I want, or do? I’m fine the way I am.” We know that the price of such self-satisfaction is an inevitable backslide, punctuated at some point by a very rude awakening. We have to grow or else deteriorate. For us, the status quo can only be for today, never for tomorrow. Change we must; we cannot stand still.

My takeaway: “far too busy with much more important matters doesn’t work – not only that but it can be a falsely-comforting cloud under which to hide”

How to Love:


Loving someone doesn’t mean saying “yes” to whatever the other person wants. The basis of loving someone else is to know yourself and to know what you need. I know a woman who suffered very much because she couldn’t say “no.” From the time she was young, whenever a man asked her for something, she felt she had to say “yes” even when she didn’t want to. It’s important that loving another person doesn’t take priority over listening to yourself and knowing what you need.

My takeaway: I can see that I’ve read this before and had even written, “Wow” on the page. But now – now I see it differently. Yes, needn’t say yes to everything and just people-please so as to not be alone… but also – must not put own needs so high and desperate that that person’s “job” comes to be fulfilling them 😥

How to Relax:


Do you have a space dedicated to relaxing in your home This doesn’t have to be a big space. It could be a small corner (not your bed!) or anywhere in a room that is dedicated just to breathing and relaxing. This is not a space for eating or doing homework, or folding laundry or building anything. This is as essential as a place to eat, sleep, and go to the bathroom. We need a small space where we can take care of our nervous system and restore our tranquility and peace.

My takeaway: I can use a big floor pillow in the “sunroom.” Want to start doing this. Or even a certain sitting spot (chair or “other” side of sofa) in the l.r. Want to start doing this, yes.

How to Walk:


When we are pushed and pulled in many different directions, we lose our sovereignty. We’re not free. Don’t allow yourself to be carried away anymore. Resist. Each mindful step is a step toward freedom. This kind of freedom is not political freedom. It’s freedom from the past, from the future, from our worries and our fears.

My takeaway: Do not let myself be “carried away” anymore. “Each mindful step is a step toward freedom.”

How to Sit:


It’s wonderful if you have a quiet place to sit at home or in your workplace. But you can practice mindful sitting wherever you are. If you ride the train or the bus to work, these are excellent places to practice sitting. Instead of thinking about your projects, your colleagues, your list of tasks, you can enjoy practicing breathing in and out to release the tension in your body and give your mind a break from being caught in thinking. You can create a meditation hall of your bus or your train. Use your time, wherever you are, to nourish and heal yourself.

My takeaway: Oh my gosh, I love this all! “Use your time, wherever you are, to nourish and heal yourself.” Ahhh. Yes.








Journal Jan 30

Good Morning! May this be a day of peace and “enough” and love for you (and me).

I’m grateful that I just meditated. Message: Take it slow. Be gentle with yourself. Feel My embrace. I love you. Gift: You are okay. This day. – Ahh

May I remember those things today.

May you also.

— 5:52 pm


so – it is what it is – i must accept – i don’t think i can even quite write about it now – except that – well – lots happened today – and it led to much muc rying and borderline despair – it involved: loneliness/ an intruder on my property, jo here and a very long talk/ police putting intruder in jail omg so much so much – fears and self-recriminations etc etc etc – but EVERYHING is what it is period and i shall be ok – i MUST accept and deal from HERE – here is all there is!. Amen. —

How come I can relax at 6;45 pm but not at 11:00 am? Because at 6:45 pm I feel like, “Oh – I’ve put in a day and now I get to wind down and relac” At 11:00 am I feel l the sense of endless loneliness and empties. So it’s ALL in the imnd!

Gratiudes Jan 30

  1. I’m so grateful for the grocery shopping yesterday.
  2. And how I felt going in – how lucky to have it all available. Including the freedom to just do it
  3. And the car to get there
  4. and the money for gas in the car
  5. And it is like, less than a mile from my house!
  6. And the free cart to use there
  7. And the aisles and aisles of so much! More than I could ever need!
  8. Choices even of brands
  9. Organic produce – right at my own local supermarket!
  10. I even got healthy snacks
  11. Spent $92.00, which is good, for me.
  12. Getting it lower and lower.
  13. Bought all I need
  14. Had a list, not only of what to buy, but everything here I can eat all week.
  15. Came home and make zucchini and an orange pepper in sauce, yum.
  16. Had some already.
  17. Nice checkout person.
  18. Clean, pleasant store.
  19. Had everything I wanted. Done.
  20. Then I even went back after putting away mine
  21. and doing laundry
  22. and practicing piano
  23. and making the veggie dish on the stovetop
  24. went back to do mother’s. So glad I can do that for her.
  25. Brought it over
  26. Y. put it all away
  27. We had nice visit, watching “her” cooking shows. Lucky me! (And her)
  28. I went to Weight Watchers meeting yesterday.
  29. It was great!
  30. So many people
  31. And so nice
  32. And I was one of the ones who helped a newcomer
  33. Such a nice leader
  34. Bought measuring cups and 2 spoons come with too
  35. Stayed in points yesterday.
  36. Practiced Rachmaninoff
  37. And Schumann
  38. Loved both
  39. Read a little
  40. Watched a little tv
  41. Overall healthy day
  42. Sick days with pay when needed
  43. Positive people
  44. Deep breaths
  45. Today’s readings that I did
  46. Today’s affirmations that I did
  47. Humor
  48. Laughter
  49. The Big Book
  50. other books
  51. When I was little, yoohoo from Noni and Papa Noni’s store
  52. And other treats
  53. And that my mother did limit us from taking advantage! lol
  54. My cousins. Including T
  55. K
  56. J
  57. L
  58. Lo
  59. B
  60. H
  61. S
  62. A (rip)
  63. P
  64. Mg
  65. Js
  66. C
  67. My Aunt L
  68. My Aunt J
  69. My Aunt Ju
  70. My Aunt M
  71. My Uncle C
  72. My Uncle J
  73. My Uncle G
  74. My Uncle je
  75. My Uncle M
  76. My Aunt R
  77. My Aunt H
  78. My Aunt Mi
  79. My aunt and uncle taking me in when my father died, for that month
  80. S.B.
  81. ML all those years
  82. That I remembered to buy bandaids yesterday.
  83. My antiques from my mother
  84. My mother’s laughter
  85. Poetry
  86. Paintings
  87. Stores
  88. Nature!
  89. Trails
  90. parks
  91. Oceans
  92. Dirt.
  93. Earth
  94. Sun
  95. Moobn
  96. Stars
  97. Solar System. Yes, really.
  98. So much help of every kind so readily available online and in person and in books and in so many ways. For all.
  99. I have Internet
  100. I have phones
  101. I have tvs
  102. I have books
  103. I have furniture

Readings Jan 30

For Today:

The best part of our lives we pass in counting on what is to come. William Hazlitt

What a waste. A life of expecting and waiting. Was the event ever as good as the anticipation? Seldom. Disappointment gave me climate to complain, reason to brood – and to seek relief in food.

In OA, I am in today – now, this minute – which is the only reality. Yesterday is a memory, tomorrow is not here. I will appreciate this minute for what it is. I will be conscious of a life outside myself so I can hear its sounds, feel its warmth and coolness, now another’s presence. Fear disappears, control vanishes; I let go and let God direct my life.

For today: In OA, I am regaining the capacity for simple enjoyment I once had: to explore, to accept, to trust and delight in present-moment pleasures as a child does.

My takeaway: yesterday is a memory, tomorrow is not here, so STOP BLAMING SELFA ND REGRETTING!


How to Eat:


Try to be present with your food and with the people sitting around the table with you. Don’t close your eyes or look down while you chew. You can open your eyes and if you are with people, notice them alive and well. When we chew with awareness, we’re not just nourished by the food, we’re nourished by our practice of mindfulness, peace, and happiness. While we chew, we breathe and we enjoy our breathing and our ability to eat and receive nourishment from our food.

My takeaway: I have done this. It was hard at first and giggly. But it is actually quite beautiful.

Voices of Recovery:

“Our true insanity could be seen in the fact that we kept right on trying to find comfort in excess food, long after it began to cause us misery.” -The Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions of Overeaters Anonymous, p. 11

I can remember when a little food gave me comfort or relief. That was many years ago. The quest to relive that feeling resulted in bigger and more frequent binges. Eventually, I began to see that this may not be normal – but insane? I wasn’t convinced.

Was it insane to eat to a point of such fullness that exploding might have been a relief? To purge myself with laxatives so the binge wouldn’t have time to cause a weight gain? To eat so fast and furiously as to cause cuts on my lips and inside my mouth, and still to keep eating until the bag was empty? To try starving myself for a  few days after a binge, almost as a punishment for what I had done? To eat the substances that caused me migraine headaches and rage outbursts? Was it insane to stop living in return for nonstop eating?

I must answer yes to all of the above I am convinced.

My takeaway: It was insane of me to starve in an effort to “make up for” what I’d done. It was insane to eat out of the garbage. It was insane to keep trying to find comfort in excess food, long after it began to cause me misery, as it says above. On and on. — I don’t have to live that way anymore. *I don’t have to live that way anymore.



A few hours later I took my leave of Dr. Bob . . . The wonderful, old, broad smile was on his face as he said almost jokingly, “Remember, Bill, let’s not louse this thing up. Let’s keep it simple!” I turned away, unable to say a word. That was the last time I ever saw him. Alcoholics Anonymous Comes of Age, p. 214

After years of sobriety I occasionally ask myself; “Can it be this simple?” Then, at meetings, I see former cynics and skeptics who have walked the A.A. path out of hell by packaging their lives, without alcohol, into twenty-four hour segments, during which they practice a few principles to the best of their individual abilities. And then I know again that, while it isn’t always easy, if I keep it simple, it works.

My takeaway: Keep it all simple.

As Bill Sees It:

Alike When the Chips Are Down

In the beginning, it was four whole years before A.A. brought permanent sobriety to even one alcoholic woman. Like the “high bottoms,” the women said they were different: A.A. couldn’t be for them. But as the communication was perfected, mostly by the women themselves, the picture changed.

This process of identification and transmission has gone on and on. The Skid-Rower said he was different. Even more loudly, the socialite (or Park Avenue stumblebum) said the same – so did the artists and the professional people, the rich, the poor, the religious, the agnostic, the Indians and the Eskimos, the veterans, and the prisoners.

But nowadays all of these, and legions more, soberly talk about how very much alike all of us alcoholics are when we admit that the chips are finally down.

My takeaway: – Because, keep it simple? … 🙂

How to Love:


Sexual desire is not love. Sexual activity without love is called empty sex. If you satisfy your body but don’t satisfy your heart and your mind, are you satisfied? Do you feel whole and connected? When your body, heart, and mind are satisfied, sexual intimacy connects you more deeply with yourself and your partner.

My takeaway: in all ways, keep body heart and mind connected.

How to Relax:


I started inviting the bell when I was sixteen years old, the age when I became a novice monk. We say, “Invite the bell” rather than “strike the bell” because we think of the bell as a friend. We want to invite its sound into our bodies. Inviting a bell to sound is one very simple way to relax. When we hear the bell, we breathe in and we breathe out, and we take in that beautiful sound. That’s it. If we don’t have a bell, we can use another sound – a phone ringing, an airplane passing overhead, the chime of a clock, a timer on the computer, or the natural sounds around us. We can even use the sound of a jackhammer or a leaf blower.

My takeaway: Yes, I think I’d like to find one.

How to Walk:


Walking is a wonderful way to calm down when we are upset. When we walk, if we focus all our awareness on walking, we are stopping the thinking, storytelling, blaming, and judging that goes on in our heads and takes us away from the present moment. To stop the incessant thinking in the mind, it helps to focus on the body. When things aren’t going well, it’s good to stop the thinking in order to prevent the unpleasant, destructive energies from continuing. Stopping does not mean repressing; it means, first of all, calming. If we want the ocean to be calm, we don’t throw away its water. Without the water, nothing is left. When we notice the presence of anger, fear, and agitation is us, we don’t need to throw them away. We only have to breathe in and out consciously and take a mindful step. Allow yourself to sink deeply into the here and the now, because life is available only in the present moment. This alone is enough to calm the storm.

My takeaway: I will try this! 🙂

How to Sit:


In the present moment, we can be free from regret concerning the past and from fear concerning the future. Happiness isn’t possible without freedom. Coming back to the present moment, we are released from our worries, our fears, our regrets, our projects, and our busyness.

My takeaway: Yes. I’ve been coming back to the present moment more and more. And may I do so yet more ’til all the time 🙂






Gratitudes Jan 29

  1. I’m grateful I went to that meeting yesterday.
  2. I’m grateful for this new day.
  3. I’m grateful for my morning readings
  4. I’m so grateful to hear the birds chirping when I get home, like yesterday. It brings me happiness
  5. And to hear them right now, starting their day (noisely lol)
  6. I’m grateful that I have a good deal of food in the house. I’m going to use more of it this week! And buy less! : )
  7. I’m grateful to have a meeting to go to today
  8. I’m so grateful for my new music!
  9. Practicing Rachmaninoff yesterday!
  10. And Schumann!
  11. Will find a way (financially) to have a lesson soon! : )
  12. And maybe some French also!
  13. I’m grateful for the detox bath:
  14. The little blue windows by the fireplace
  15. The Gold Girls jello mold
  16. The Thich Nhat Hanh calligraphies
  17. The Thich Nhat Hanh photo of him by the tree, raking by a friend of mine, in Vietnam, “I planted this tree,” 50 years later! Amidst the war ruins! A huge, thriving tree!
  18. Babies
  19. Puppies
  20. My birds
  21. That they are buddies now
  22. My rugs – they are beautiful
  23. My manifestation board.
  24. My book that I’m reading
  25. I am so lucky to breathe ad see and hear ad speak
  26. Walking
  27. WW near me
  28. And so many to choose from
  29. OA near me
  30. And so many to choose from
  31. The Internet
  32. WiFi
  33. My small flat screen tv in the d.r.
  34. And larger one in the den
  35. And that i do not have a tv in the bedroom
  36. I will practice piano today!
  37. That I type so very quickly! I LOVE using my hands!
  38. A’s friendship. That it isn’t lost!
  39. That I give to children.
  40. That people give to me
  41. 2 people commenting on me looking good Friday.
  42. and one BIG-TIME recently
  43. Exercise – every bit of it that I get
  44. That my new Fitbit charger DOES work (the first new one didn’t)
  45. My OA workbook
  46. A new meeting about to start near me – maybe on Steps!
  47. D’s friendship
  48. My cousins back in our lives.
  49. Those pics of my mother young
  50. and my father
  51. and my aunt
  52. and my grandfather!
  53. My eyesight!
  54. Hope
  55. Good eye doctor
  56. Good regular doctor
  57. good gynocologist
  58. Good dentist
  59. Veganism
  60. Vegetarianism
  61. That I don’t use leather
  62. Compliments on my adorable shoes yesterday
  63. And that they are not leather.
  64. And that I shared that with the complimenter.
  65. and she LOVED it! (I think the cheap factor helps!)
  66. Teaching
  67. I never thought I’d WANT a job – any job – EVER. But my job saves me. Thank God for my job
  68. Finding MY Higher Power last Feb end of month. Almost a year. WHAT a difference!
  69. That day in Best Buy when the veil lifted (Best Buy is just a coincidence – it happens to be wehre i was standing and I’ll never forget it!) Maybe not 100% coincidence because I’d been feeling fearful about going and hw to do… and it was GONE.
  70. I have never looked through a veil again since. In almost a year and 10 whole months!
  71. Even with cataracts. Wow.
  72. Vegetanbles
  73. My car
  74. My ability to drive
  75. My license
  76. Beaches
  77. Parks
  78. Trees on my own very property
  79. That I have a yard
  80. Stone steps
  81. A stone wall
  82. I love rocks. Thank You for rocks. I have loved them since my earliest memories.
  83. Little “wild” creatures.
  84. Grass
  85. Dirt.
  86. Mother Earth
  87. The native peoples’ attitudes toward our Mother Earth
  88. And that may of us still learn from it
  89. Open minds all
  90. Freedoms. All my freedoms
  91. Days off 🙂
  92. I have flown in airplanes. It’s so wonderful. And amazing
  93. I have swam in the Atlantic Ocean
  94. And the Pacific Ocean (well dipped in anyway)
  95. And the Caribbean Sea.
  96. And a huge river.
  97. I will take a detox bath before bed tonight.
  98. That I just meditated
  99. How easily accessible I have become in it. It takes like a breath or two that’s all!
  100. My muscles