God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can and the wisdom to know the difference.

I can’t even attempt a description of the peace I am experiencing from where I am sitting right now.  But nevertheless, imagine a pool in front of you, (if you smoke) a cigarette in your hand, a clean kitchen, a (made) king size bed to sleep in, and people surrounding you, not professing their love for God, for yourself and for others, but living it.

However, everything is not a magical freaking fairy tail , let me tell you.  I was (and still am) severely pissed off at whoever is now, as I speak, a bicycle richer.  I strapped the thing through it’s wheel, through the frame, to a treadmill, which is standing right outside my door, in a yard, behind a closed and locked gate.  And even this was not much of a deterrent for this lad (or lass) who took it.  And as if that wasn’t enough, the police officer had the audacity to reprimand me for not taking enough responsibility for my things.  Read the above paragraph again, and then please let me know how much more responsibility I could have taken.

But everything seems to be a part of a much bigger picture.  I am, for the first time ever, moving into a more positive direction as far as my religion (or lack thereof) is concerned.  And the more inquisitive I become about the whereabouts and the modus operandi of a loving God, the more Evil seems to attack, in its endless pursuit of getting me to slavishly adhere to its rules.  And return to the very familiar hell that binds my hands.

So on that note, whoever took the bicycle: I understand more than you could ever imagine where you are coming from, taking what isn’t rightfully yours. I wish you well, enjoy the ride (it’s a great bike).  Just don’t do it again – (and then true to my nature) : Things like this, it’s got a way of biting you in the ass when you least expect it, and when (not if) that happens, don’t come crying to me.

I am grateful for a beautiful place to live in, beautiful angels right next door watching over me,  for my two music students, and for love.

God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can and the wisdom to know the difference.

I woke up this morning feeling quite different to the way I usually feel.  It didn’t take me as long as usual to realize all my blessings, and the gratitude I feel towards them.

I agree with what I had once read, that I don’t find bastard coated bastards with a bastard filling nearly as annoying as naive bobble-headed optimists walking around vomiting sunshine all day long.

I don’t and (hopefully) never will fall into the latter category.  But there isn’t much point in poisoning the world with perpetual negative cynicism either, is there?

So what I was feeling this morning was just a quiet, introspective awareness of the way things are seeming to pan out for me.  And things might be looking up for today by virtue of a little more effort, and slightly more perseverance on my behalf.  By taking a chance or two, maybe pushing myself out of my comfort zone and becoming a little more vulnerable than I have in the past.

I must try to remember: It is always darkest before the dawn.

I am grateful for being able to see, hear, feel, taste, smell, walk, laugh, cry.

I am grateful for hope.  And I am grateful for love.

God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can and the wisdom to know the difference.

Two days ago I had this burning desire to chat to someone about quite specific things going on for me at the moment.  This lady is what I would present as the perfect example of what Christianity is about.  She exudes this unwavering, relentless faith without trying to force it down on others.

A big decision was yet to be made by me.  All the evidence pointed towards only one viable option, which was to pack my things where I’ve been staying for the last 6 months and move on.

The modus operandi (unusual as it may be) of the housemates and the home I will be calling mine for the time being, seems like something that might just work for me.

But everything is not just all smiles.  It was hard for me to pack my things and leave our old place.  The house, the way things were done, the way people loved and cared for each other, the laughter, the tears, the pain, the ecstasy, the despair.

I know that I did my very best and I know that it was ultimately in my best interest to move on.  As the friend I mentioned earlier so beautifully enlightened me after I (as usual) had been complaining and whining about my current predicament:  God have been gradually closing doors for some time already at the place you were living before.  But he only closes a door once he is sure that there is another one opened.  And Madonna also probably nails it by saying that “there is only so much you can learn in one place.  The more that you wait, the more time that you waste.”

So this is an exciting time for me really.  I am blessed beyond belief.

I am grateful for this new place I am at now: both physically/geographically and emotionally/spiritually.  These are the ingredients to a hell of an exciting time, and the only requirement is for me to stay clean and to observe, recognize and grab the opportunities that present themselves – and run with it.

I am grateful for my parents.  They are the two most resilient creatures on this planet.  God must have purposely made them this way – he kept in mind that one day I would come into this world like a little prima donna wreaking havoc more often than not.

I am grateful that I have all my senses to enjoy a this summer day in Greyton (however I was told “dit raak kak warm hier Koebie” by the maid).  This I am yet to experience.

I am grateful for the incredible warmth and the palpable love that I walked into yesterday.

I am grateful for my friend for taking my hand and with the help of God, guiding me through a time where I couldn’t see (or convinced my self that I couldn’t see) clearly enough.

God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can and the wisdom to know the difference.

It’s been some time since my last entry. The serenity prayer is a deep thing. I was confronted (or lets rather say I kind of “confronted myself”) with a situation, where there was so much I could have done to change the situation I was about to get myself into. After six months clean, I relapsed.

But I know that this relapse started a week or two before. The thinking, the lying, the cheating, the planning – covert behavior. Now I am in a situation where I must accept the things I cannot change. Yes I relapsed, and yes I disappointed many people, including myself. Some even got hurt. Some are angry. And then there are some that might even have gotten to a point that they honestly don’t care anymore.

What I need to do now, is finding the courage to change what I can. And it is in my opinion that there is absolutely no shame in stumbling. The books on addiction wouldn’t have had a chapter on relapse if it wasn’t part of the disease. The shame is in staying on the ground, and making no effort to get up again. Self-pity and what not.

Absolutely, I did feel sorry for myself for a day or two. But then I got up, early in the morning, made my bed and got on with the things that everyone else does day in and day out. And I made peace with this relapse (and it’s consequences) quite quickly, I must say. Because honestly, is there any sense in it at all to stay stuck in that “should have, could have” mode?

I don’t regret relapsing at all. The last time I relapsed (about six months ago), I learned from the experience. This time even more so. This time I was taught that my life, and the lives of others, go on regardless. The world doesn’t stop because I fucked up.

I am grateful for opportunities that came my way – and I am now more sure than ever that my higher power is letting things fall into place. He, she or it couldn’t have chosen a better time. Keeping busy is the best medicine to keep me from beating myself up (which is very pointless…)

I am grateful for the support I am getting: people from all over are sending emails, facebook messages, text messages.

I am grateful for being able to get up after this episode, and that I am still alive. So many times (including this time) I decided to walk in that narrow space that I know so well – what separates “fun” and flatline.

God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can and the wisdom to know the difference.

This morning I was lying in my bed, thinking there’s not much in me that wants to get up, shower, get dressed, get on with the day.  I tried wallowing in that feeling a little, realized that there is even less sense in that.  Most of the time there is some kind of reason behind feeling that I want to hide in my sleep.  It’s been like this for the past couple of days, and it is probably time now to give it a name.

In all honesty, I know what is going on.  There’s someone I miss a lot today,  this person is not and will probably never be conducive to my recovery and I am struggling to accept this.  That’s the trifecta of absolute misery.

Here the serenity prayer could probably help me to get to a point where I can see some light.  But as it was once so cleverly said, that so many of us rage against the hand life has dealt us.  Today, this is me raging.  Quietly so, but still raging.  And maybe it is just that – that I am doing it quietly, and not making any effort to seek help and guidance, be it from someone close to me, someone wiser than me, something bigger than me.

It is hard indeed to accept the things I cannot change, but I make it even harder when I trick myself into believing that “the things I cannot change” are in fact things I CAN change.  The wisdom to know the difference is lacking profoundly here, as you can see.

So I can with some safety deduce from what I have been writing here, that my predicament is 99% self-inflicted by means of my cheap thinking.  Shit stinks, but at least it’s warm – no, no, no.

I am grateful for my parents, for friends, for food, for a place to stay, for my dog Mia, for 10 fingers and for my eyes.

God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.

I slept in quite late today.  This is a little out of the norm for me these days – but I sure am not complaining.  And yet I was still tired when I got up.  I had lunch with my folks.  My mom cooked up a storm.  A fish dish appeared for lunch.  This fish dish consisted primarily of left-over fish from Friday evening.  It was quite tasty, I must say.  Friday night’s party – where all the fish came from – was in my opinion the quintessential “go-home-if-you-came-here-just-to-eat-all-our-food-because-there-are-way-too-many-of-y’all” -evening.  Keep in mind (… and in retrospect it would have been a fantastic idea if we had also kept this in mind planning this event):  our house ain’t no mansion, so under no circumstances attempt to fit ±40 people into it.  And at one stage the whole lot decided that it must be extremely pleasurable and a fantastic idea for them all to form a bottleneck of note in the kitchen.

The food, however, was delicious. And thanks to my funny friend, the one-of-a-kind super-freak Marjaan, I didn’t lose my mind that night, for what it’s worth.

(Un)fortunately there weren’t any alcohol-related cause for hilarity.  Actually, the opposite was true – there was a group of ladies chatting away in the lounge.  Alcohol-free “champagne” (effectively grape juice) was being served to said group of ladies at some point in the evening.  If there was ever any doubt in my mind whether there sits any truth in the so called “placebo effect”, doubt there was no more.  People CAN indeed get tipsy from anything – especially when it comes from something  resembling a champagne bottle and it is served in a wine glass.  The laughter, coming from the lounge as the group started approaching their second and third rounds (of juice), provided enough evidence to support the absolute truth that placebo can be as real as the real thing.  The same principle applies to some folk getting high on Panado or Disprin.  This is (technically) as unlikely as being beautiful, wealthy, SINGLE and STRAIGHT.

That said,  it still is interesting how drunk other guys seems to be getting ever since I got clean.  I find it quite amusing sometimes, and then other times it annoys the living daylights out of me.  I realized this: when one is tipsy it becomes customary that whatever is said, must now be shouted, and whatever is not that funny at all, must now be pant-wettingly hilarious.

But then again, maybe we were just deliriously happy.  Because in our defense,  we had a lot to be happy about this weekend.

Wow, the fish we had for lunch this afternoon had quite the story to it.  Thanks for listening.

I am grateful because I can see, I can hear, I can smell, I can taste, I can feel, I have two places I can call home, I have two people I can call mom and dad, I have a beautiful dog called Mia (I gave her a bath by the way, she smells fabulous now) and I have loads of  cool people who (seem to) enjoy being in my company.

I quoted this on my Facebook profile over a year ago, and stumbled upon it again the other day. The serenity prayer is straight forward enough. But this goes along with it brilliantly.

Ps. I am still waiting for that significant event to write about today… any ideas?

The Serenity Prayer

There is a prayer intended to give strength to people faced with circumstances they don’t want to accept. The power of the prayer comes from its insight into human nature.

We ask God to grant us the serenity to accept the things we cannot change, because so many of us rage against the hand that life has dealt us; the courage to change the things we can, because so many of us are cowardly and afraid to stand up for what is right; and the wisdom to know the difference, because so many of us give in to despair when faced with an impossible choice.

The good news for those who utter these words, is that God will hear you, and answer your prayer.

The bad news, is that sometimes, the answer is no.

God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.

Such a beautiful evening here where I am right now. 

My brother got married on Saturday August 28, 2010 at 15:30 CAT

In all honesty, we all knew that this day was bound to arrive at some point.  But so soon…?  Anyways, so I started stressing about this big day weeks ago already.  First about my outfit, then about my skin (which started embellishing itself with the one pimple after the other), then about my hair, then about my outfit again (by now I have gained a pound or two – force will now be needed to zip up the pants and get the shirt buttoned up) – and then the worst of all, I was asked to sing a song at the wedding – for my brother and his wife.  

Everything was okay in the end.  My mouth was dry as hell and I was pretty damn nervous.  This was after all the first time in years that I perform without a lil’ something to calm the nerves.  But I could feel.  I honestly prefer feeling nervous rather than not feeling at all.  And everything was cool.  Then I walked up to my brother and gave him a hug.  And he hugged me back.  He almost cracked my one rib.  And I realized at that moment that this is the starting point from where I want our relationship to move – in the right direction.

The rest of the evening was fantastic.  Some got very drunk (and in my humble opinion aka. fucking annoying).  I was happy that I didn’t need something in order to be happy.  The food was very delicious.

I am grateful for feeling accepted, for my brother and his wife, for my parents and for my dog.

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