Friday, November 28, 2014

Another Loss

I met Bob and Lou Crutcher at a CCE event at Roberta Meyer's house back in the early 80's. He had bright red hair and other than that, I thought that we had little else in common. I was wrong. He and I both shared common addictions.He was the owner/director of an iconic recovery center in St. Helena. His wife Lou, who he met at the St. Helena Hospital worked with him there. He was involved in alcoholism recovery here in the Napa Valley and contributed a great deal to many who went through Crutcher's Serenity House ( which has since been closed). He was also a veteran. Bob Crutcher was a class act. I don't know if he ever reconciled his relationship with his son Eddy, who had moved to Hawaii. But he and his sons were very much alike in their charismatic personalities.He drove a Harley and lived an enviable and full life. Later on in his life I had learned of a few setbacks, but he did not drink over these events and died sober. His humor and gentle spirit will be missed.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Friends that stay with you

This is a photo of a dear friend of mine that just recently passed. Although I fell out of touch over the years, we still remained strong in a heart-felt way. The woman I am speaking of is the one on the right. Probably the most talented and gifted person I have ever had the pleasure to know.

Her name is Roberta Meyer. I met Roberta early on in my sobriety, and she offered workshops for anyone with a desire to be in Communication. I spell that with a capital "C" because that was her gift. She brought that ability out in people just by her willingness to listen with intention.

She taught us that the degree to which we discount ourselves, is the degree to which we will damage others. In other words, love yourself, and know that you truly make a difference in the lives of the people around you. She authored two books, held many workshops and seminars, was an accomplished ballet dancer and taught dance throughout her life. She began programs that assisted families and youth at risk. She was a powerful speaker and  personality.

It was Roberta who listened when I had lost my mother to cancer. Ironically, she died from the same disease. She heard the language of my heart and I will forever be grateful to her for that. She was beautiful inside and out, and anyone who knew her would say pretty much the same thing.

May her Spirit live in the hearts of the people that knew her, forever.

Sunday, November 02, 2014

This Week So Far...

Monday I had a meltdown, Tuesday the Giants won the World Series. Wednesday I went for a hike around Lake Hennessy with a friend named Jim. Thursday I went to a men's meeting. Friday I prepared Coffee for the morning meeting and went to Thelma's house for Boysenberry Pie and whipped cream which Cathy brought, later i bought some fire cheetos for the trick or treaters who came by my place for Halloween. Saturday was the Farmer's Market where the rain lightened up and I made a modest income. Today is Sunday. A week of ups and downs.

I should mention that I went to see my physician on Thursday and was prescribed a medication. I am willing to give it a go. Doc says three weeks and then to return to his office for an update. It's a mild anti-convulsant called Lamotrigine. It is prescribed for bipolarity.

The doctor assured me that this has been very effective in treating people with mood disorders. I believe now that I fall in to that category. Over the years I have tried a few anti-depressants, believing that I just suffered from what I have learned is agitated depression. These medications have only served to make me feel a bit like a zombie. Emotionally flat. As an artist I was left generally uninspired and unmotivated. I gained weight and noticed that my libido was not was it was before taking these medications. I stopped taking them at different intervals throughout the late 90's and early part on the millennium. I stopped entirely around 2008. I don't like taking things that can be abused. These medications do not fall into that category.

Recovery from alcoholism has taught me to proceed cautiously when it comes to seeking advice and treatment from professionals. I have known my physician for over thirty years. I trust his judgement around his practice. I have been to other so-called professionals and have experienced many adverse results over the years, but have always returned to what has made a positive difference in my life. Good friends and fellowship has never failed me in times of desperation.
I am truly grateful for having been brought up in a loving family, however dysfunctional... we are all miracles. I am also grateful for my sobriety ,and the people that have supported that over the thirty seven years I have been drug and alcohol free. My life has been an incredible adventure and I would not trade my
problems for anyones. I have discovered how my experience can benefit others, but I know only a little. No one likes a know it all who is sometimes right.

Today, It is clear to me that I know very little yet am being directed through the belief in a Power greater than myself . That Power continues to serve me to the degree that I ask to be shown, and am willing to accept the outcome.

I am blessed to be living in a beautiful Valley, and thank God every day for the opportunity to live here.