keep open to people from all backgrounds

This message was sent to subscribers by email september 15th.


from me:

saturday morning, i think the residual jetlag is finished, i slept 10 hrs last night so that’s good. but the bad news is that upstairs neighbours moved out this morning, one of those mini crane things shows up outside our window, like a fire truck’s long extension ladder, and they put boxes on it and it shuttles them to ground level, so that they can avoid the flights of stairs. We don’t know who’s coming in next. in these old wooden buildings, your direct neighbours can change the quality of your life in ways not easily predicted. do they have 3 kids awake at 5 a.m.? do they have a dog that they’ll leave home all day, alone, to bark, and chase imaginary birds. are they midnight partiers, will they smoke out the window and drop their butts on my balcony? city living. apartment living. i could dream of a house all I like but this is a large city, with compressed spaces, it’s not happening. we’ve been in this apartment four years already. I am putting a request in to the universe today, that our new neighbours are a professional couple, travelling all the time, serious, studious. that they speak english. that they are warm and easy-going and go to bed at 10 p.m. that’ll happen, right?

notes from my inbox:

A: “Since I have no one else to announce this to, because no one in my “real” life knows my struggle, today is my Day 30!!! I am overcome with joy and amazement that I made it this far!!! I had all but given up hope before I found you. I had tried so many ways to get on the sober train over several years but that train would crash and burn after just a few days at every attempt. I was terrified that I was going to die, I was desperate to find a way out of the wine and permanently ashamed. You changed everything for me. Receiving your email updates of encouragement and your lovely postcards and now Mr. Bs beautiful, inspirational paintings has allowed me to latch on to something powerful in order to successfully pull through this all encompassing nightmare. Thank you thank you thank you for saving my life. Each day I grow stronger. Each day is a gift and I open every new sober day with a clear head and a healthy body, finally rid of toxic trauma. In fact, as I write this, it’s still dark out here. Soon the sun will rise and so shall I, set free, soaring, sober!”


M: “I felt compelled to write you about the hurricane. I’m in central N.C. and was preparing for this storm to hit. We were planning for several days without power, so stocking up on water, supplies and non-perishable food. I had no idea the hurricane would be the thing that makes me want to drink the most. I sailed through the holidays, my 50th birthday celebration, and vacations without being tempted. But so many here are using the bad weather as an excuse to party and stock up on booze, and I’m feeling the pull too. I’m not going to buy wine. I’m not going to drink. I’m just noticing the urge and the thoughts. And I wanted to tell someone, so thank you for being that person!!!”


Miss P: “Hi Belle, So how fast does your man paint??? Wow!  I have been impressed by the colors and the passion his paintings have made upon me. So, I am still just a reader. I have a lot of support in friendships and people who make Miss P great again, yet I have still not found my perfect balance. Sobriety is ok, but I get bloody bored with people’s conversations and life itself and the fact that we have to always be so freaking politically correct all of the time. These facts create a very deep thirst. I am looking for a new hobby besides working to fill that down time, though it is usually filled up by driving children to their various activities. So, I write to encourage you to keep up the creative work with your blog and your ideas. Keep open to people from all backgrounds, Faith-based, crazy loon, artistic, poorer than dirt or the richest bitch on the block. I do believe this is one of your greatest strengths. Thanks for following your vocation. Miss P.”


J: “Belle, I’m so sorry, and I truly don’t mean to be rude or negative but, for me, your emails have now become 90 per cent about flogging your husband’s “art”. Not an approach for me, I’m afraid, so I’m unsubscribing. I do, though, wish you both well.”


Step 1. Exit
Step 2. Stay Here, Stay Focussed, Stay Sober
Step 3. Potential opens up for you. “I have potential because I’m sober.”

original painting here, this is #197



I want to put this online, to hold myself accountable. I want to document the noise in my head. I'm tired of thinking about drinking. date of last drink: june 30, 2012