I have torn my labrum, along with a slight tear in my rotator cuff, in my left shoulder. I have no idea when it happened, as I exercise regularly and do a lot of heavy lifting on my own. It let me know last Tuesday night at 2:30am that something BAD had happened in my left shoulder. I woke up with excruciating pain, and I could not raise my left arm above waist level. Having had two rotator cuff operations on the right shoulder, I knew from the pain, it was something bad. I also knew that I was heading into dangerous territory.

It was the first two back to back shoulder surgeries that led to my addiction to opiates. The first surgery was not done right, after, I was still in immense pain every time I moved my right arm. Physical therapy put me in agony. Each time I went back to the surgeon, he wrote me another prescription for Vicodin. I was taking them daily for close to two years before I had the corrective surgery. The next surgeon was equally as giving with the pain medication. This was 10 years ago , prior to the opiate epidemic we are facing today, but it was enough to get me hooked. There was nothing more relaxing than a pill and a bottle of wine. This combination numbed the world away, brought it all to a manageable blur.

The morning following the sleepless night of pain, my husband, the retired doctor, and I went to the E.R. Ex-rays were taken, pain pills were given, along with a prescription for 24 additional, and we were off to the orthopedic doctor who had fixed my right shoulder. He gave me a steroid shot, and set up the MRI, which gave me the results of the tear.

This all did my head in. I was closing in on six months of sobriety from the opiates, and here they are front and center in my life again. Part of my long term recovery plan for the last 3 1/2 years since I quit alcohol, was running and exercise. Now I was sidelined with one of my worst enemies sitting in a little yellow bottle on my night table.

I know my limitations, and I desperately do not want to go down this ugly road again, so I handed the bottle to my husband, the retired doctor, and asked him to manage them for me. To only give me one at the end of the day if I asked.

On day three, when I returned from an AA meeting, I asked husband for a pill. I had worked all day using the arm, which of course one uses their arm, it is an ARM. I was in pain. Husband had been drinking, and when I asked for a pill, he came out and HANDED ME THE WHOLE BOTTLE!! His comment was, here, you manage this.

It felt like someone had gut punched me. I was devastatingly hurt, as well as completely flabbergasted that he could be so cavalier, unsympathetic and show no empathy.  I felt like I was living with a stranger.

He has been with me through this struggle for the last 4 years. He knows I have stolen his pills whenever they have been around. He knows I have gone to Maine, to help my father, and have stolen all of his left over pain medicine. He knows I am an addict, yet here he was, handing me my drug. I just couldn’t understand in, nor believe it.

I called my girlfriend and asked her if I could drop the bottle off with her. She was leaving for the weekend, so I kept 3 for the days she would be gone, and I got them out of my house.

When I handed them to her, I told her I would not need them again. I had given myself the deadline of Monday to figure out how to deal with the pain without taking the pills. I did end up needing the three I had set aside, but it has been Tylenol since Monday.

I am still gutted by my husband, the doctor’s, actions. I am so angry, and hurt, I have yet to address it with him. I don’t understand how he doesn’t understand.




Relapse-Reset & Rigerous Honesty Sucks

I picked up my 60 day chip on Monday night. It made me feel like shit.

When I got sober, from alcohol, in 2013, each milestone felt amazing. This just feels crappy.

Rigorous honesty sucks. I feel like quitting AA again, just so I can walk around saying I have 3+ years of sobriety. White knuckle it, again. It worked so well the last time. :/

Being a weak ass addict sucks too. I am not even sure, right at this moment, that if a Vicodin landed on my desk, I wouldn’t take it, and that REALLY sucks.

It has entered my mind just to say fuck it to all of it, and chuck it all.

The damage is done, I could go back to my old ways, then quit again, and be where I am right now. In my warped thinking, that would feel like a true reset.

Go big or go home.



2017 and percocet relapse

I was lying in bed last night, wishing I had a journal to write in. I have had journals, but I have stopped writing in them because my husband reads them. He reads them even though I have told him, “Hey, this is my journal, it is going to live here on my night table, please don’t read it.” I find this to be a huge invasion of my privacy, among many other things that I am not going to get into today, so I stopped journaling. I moved my current one to the car, which is not a convenient place to find time and put down thoughts. I would suspect writing in a journal while driving is up there in the don’t column along with texting while driving.

Being in recovery, I have discovered that NOT writing down my thoughts has not helped me process the thoughts, or get the thoughts out of my head and put them somewhere else so they no longer make such a racket. The noise keeps me up at night.

I remembered, in my early sobriety I used to blog. I never really enjoyed blogging, I always felt my writing wasn’t good enough, or I wasn’t being insightful, or I wasn’t posting frequently enough, so I shut my blog down. That was about 2 1/2 years ago. I was blogging for the wrong reasons. This blog will now be my journal, somewhere for those pesky, keep me awake at night thoughts to live. Somewhere that the husband won’t find them.

A lot has happened in 2 1/2 years. Of course it has, it has been 2 1/2 years. I am still sober, from alcohol. I have 1,179 days. I have been in AA, then quit AA, and now my road has brought me back to AA. (more on that another day)

I never disclosed in my prior blogs that I also am an opiate addict. I had a botched rotator cuff surgery, and my doctor’s answer to my complaints about getting worse instead of better, was a continuous supply of Vicodin prescriptions. I had the shoulder repaired again, and got more opiates. As time has gone on, there have been various injuries that have required prescriptions for opiates. I have never refused or disclosed my predilection for addiction.

I found that alcohol and opiates were the perfect combination to keep me numb. As long as I had my wine and a pill or two, I was happily high, and nothing bothered me. I could drink and drug and never have to bother with any of the myriad of bothersome, hurtful issues that life consists of.

I had a year of opiate sobriety until two days ago. I found my husbands percocets that he had gotten when he had kidney stones last year. I had previously requested that they be hidden, which they were, (which in itself is pathetic to me, but that is another post) but we are away, and they aren’t hidden well, so I found them.

Then life happened, which it has a habit of doing, so I took 2 percocets. Never one, always 2, 1/2 at a time, spread out over the evening. Naturally, the self loathing was there immediately the following morning.The sick feeling,and the abject sadness at having relapsed after having a year of sobriety with pills.

As I am sitting here, life is coming in fast and furious once again. Things are ramping up to a place where I have no control. Control is my thing, as I believe it is for every addict. I still know where the perocects are, so I am telling you. I am telling anyone who is reading this that I am thinking about taking a percocet to make these feelings go away.

I am also thinking about how shitty I will feel if I do that, so for this moment, I am not going to do it. I am going to finish this post, then go do fold some laundry, and get through the next moment, then the next, until this feeling passes.

And then when my husband gets home, I am going to tell him I found them, and to please hide them again. That is what I am going to do.


I just saw the movie You’re not You.  This song is at the end, and it really resonated with me.  This is how I feel about my sobriety, this journey and my sponsor.

At least I am falling forward.

Finally I’m laying down these arms
The ones I held so close to see me through
And I’m just like a sparrow in a barn
I’m flyin’ for that tiny patch of blue
I dive head-first into the dark
I don’t look back, I just keep stumbling
I trip and fall
I hit the ground, I skin my knees
I just keep going
I made a mess, I’ve been a mess, I guess
And guess what – life is messy
And if I learned anything
At least I’m falling forward
Because of you
I’m fallin’ forward




I would estimate that I have had the worst two months in my entire life.

In August my mother was diagnosed with Stage 3 multiple myeloma.  I went and spent close to a month with her to get her chemotherapy started.  We did a half a cycle, and she quit.

I then worked with my brother to get her moved to an assisted living close to him in St. Louis, MO.The timing was perfect, and the move went without a hitch.

During my time in Virginia, I attended AA meetings, and when my mother decided to have wine, I respectfully declined. I also did not comment about her drinking even though she had been told not to, or to limit it  A GLASS if really necessary.  I let it go, and let her be.


Mom moved in to her new place and began to get used to her new lifestyle.  She seemed to enjoy the constant attention, the meals in a dining room, and especially not having to cook!!  I began to think things were turning around for the better.

I had been informed by my husband, the doctor, that my mother’s multiple myeloma would not be the thing that ended her life.  It would take a be something else, such as pneumonia, or heart failure, as the disease would continuously compromise her immune system.

Two weeks ago, I could tell from talking to her that she was beginning to get a cold.  I suggested she speak with her attending nurse to get her the nebulizer breathing machine to ward off any potential lung issues.  Unfortunately, it took four days for it to get ordered and into her hands.  She started using it, but was still having difficulty.

I spoke with her again last Thursday, and she informed me that she couldn’t breathe while lying down. She had to prop herself up on a pillow to get comfortable tobe able to breathe well enough to fall asleep.  My husband was adamant she get to a doctor immediately.  He felt that she either had pneumonia or was beginning to have heart failure.

My brother got her to her oncologist last Friday afternoon.  They walked her from their office to the hospital room where she still is.

The last week has been a nightmare.  I understand the process of testing for A to rule it out, then continuing on to B, etc.  Unfortunately, again, living with someone who has practiced medicine for 35 years, and has seen everything once, I was getting too much mind-boggling information to fast.

Every time a new symptom was discovered, my own doctor knew the cause, the effect, and the eventual diagnosis.  Although, he always added, I may be wrong, I haven’t seen any her or her chart.

He then had a conversation with the lead doctor on her case.  That night he spent quite a long time drawing me pictures, and explaining what was happening, and telling me what the outcome was going to be, without REALLY telling me what  the outcome was going to be.  I got it, I have spent the last 72 hours crying off and on, crying and waiting.

I waited for the tests, for the doctors on site, for anyone, to prove him wrong.

Sadly they did not.

They called a family meeting to discuss the diagnosis at 3pm today.

This afternoon the oncologist confirmed what my husband painstakingly drew, described and diagnosed on Monday evening.

My mother has Stage IV lung cancer, untreatable, incurable, lung cancer.  Now she has two types of incurable cancer.

Tomorrow she will turn 79 years old, in a hospital room, knowing she only has months to live.  Happy Fucking Birthday.

As for me, I have run the gamut of emotions.  I have spent days crying off and on.  Feeling like I may vomit at any moment.  I have had my issues with my mother.  Our relationship was always tenuous at best.  I have never asked her how she felt about it, now I never will.  As I stated in August I have let it go, it doesn’t matter anymore.

I called her today and told her that no matter what, if she needs me, I will be there.  I will bring my blow up bed and move in and do what ever she needs.  I promised to stay with her until the end, if that is what she wants.

What I know right now, this very minute is this.  If there was a bottle of wine in this house, right here, right now, I would be at the bottom of it.

I know that alcohol never solves anything, or makes it better, in fact it makes things worse, way worse. But I would love to numb this pain away for an hour or two.  Right now I am hanging onto my sobriety by my fingertips, white knuckling it, all of those cliche sayings, I am living them. I actually feel like I DESERVE a drink for having to go through this.

Thank goodness I don’t keep wine in this house, and thank goodness the closest liquor store is over 20 minutes away.  I don’t have the physical or emotional energy to go get any booze.   Thank goodness for that too.

I will make it through this night, and tomorrow will be another day where things will probably not be better,  more time will have gone by, and this urge may be gone.  If not, I will spend the day in my safety spot, my bed.

As my sponsor said, what would booze solve anyway?

As always, she is right.

My mother is going to die, and I want to drink.

One moment at a time tonight, one stinking fucking rotten gut wrenching I may vomit moment.



Is My Higher Power Testing Me?

That was my thought this morning as I was running. I was thinking about all of the stuff that has been happening this summer:
My husband and his 99 year old father,and the trash, the dirt, and the driving.  The fact that the hubs hasn’t set foot in his own home since 6/3.

Me and my mother, our awful relationship, and me now having to be her caretaker, decision maker, and part time therapist. Having to be brutally honest with myself and come to terms with the fact that this relationship is so toxic and damaged that I just don’t care what the outcome of all of this is.

The fact is that  I am really only here so that if and when something happens I can get up in the morning, look at myself and realize that I did the right thing, no matter how painful this is to my psyche. No matter how many body shots I have to take from her foul, bitter attitude. No matter how many drinking triggers this sets off.  No matter how many times I have to see her snot flying drunk.

Is this my higher power throwing down lighting bolts, laughing and saying, “Will she really stay off the bottle? Is she up to this life on life’s terms? Can she manage everything I am throwing down and not go get drunk?”

Maybe it is payback for being a shitty person for so long. Putting a glass of wine before everything and everyone. Maybe my metal is being tested. I don’t know.

As these questions consumed me during my run I shook off the negative thinking, and looked up. This is what I saw.

2014-08-14 11.35.24

Maybe my HP decided to shine on me for a few minutes. Whatever it is, I’ll take the strength it gave me to keep on keeping on for the rest of today.

Tomorrow, who knows. Right now I am looking down at where my feet are.

Life on life’s terms


Overwhelmed is my word of the day.

  • Making no progress getting the 99 year old driver off the road.
  • No progress in getting a cleaning person for the 99 year old.
  • No progress in getting the 99 year old to get trash pick up so he isn’t running all over town putting his garbage in other people’s dumpsters.  (They HATE that out here, it is a huge fine if you are caught.)
  • Had a third showing on our house that has been for sale for 3 years, and no offer.
  • My mother was hospitalized on Monday via ambulance in Virginia, where I just was.
  • Today she was diagnosed with full blown multiple myeloma, blood cancer.
  • Waiting, waiting, waiting for the oncologist to call, he told her at 11 am EST he would call me to discuss the diagnosis and options.
  • Can’t get any of this to stay in the God box.
  • Still waiting…..
  • Practicing patience, impatience is winning.


Jealousy or Mental Illness?



I had a very disturbing conversation with my mother Friday evening.  It brought back a flood of emotions from my childhood.  Her jealousy and contempt was laid bare, and she wasn’t even talking about me.

I have a very beautiful, vivacious, intelligent niece.  She excels at most everything she does, and is in accelerated classes in school.  She is a pleasure to be around, sincere, sensitive and sweet, not a malicious bone in her beautiful presence.  She was the target of my mother’s vitriol during dinner Friday night.

Our Friday evening dinner consisted of the usual, meat, carbohydrate and vegetable.  The vegetable was broccoli.  My mother did something I had never seen before: she dumped blue cheese salad dressing all over her broccoli.  I made the comment that the blue cheese on the vegetable was something new.  She told me that my niece, A, had introduced her to it, and she LOVED it.

She then said, that after the first time she had it, she sent A a thank you email for telling her about it.  She angrily said that A had never responded to the email.  My mother was beyond angry that she didn’t get a thank-you for the thank-you.  (This is the same person who will send you a card, and if you don’t immediately call and thank her for it, she gets extremely annoyed.)

At this point, the diatribe that my mother launched into has disturbed me since.

She told me that she had asked A if she had gotten her email about the dressing.  A said that she does not use email, she uses Instagram and Snapchat.  Nevertheless, she thanked my mother for sending the email.

My mother then sneered, and with a perverse smile on her face, she informed me that she likes to DIG at A about the email.

“I like to DIG her, I DIG at her every time I see her. I ask her about it every time I see her, just so I can get to her.”   DIRECT QUOTE.

I was stunned beyond speech.  I scrambled around in my brain for a response, yet came up completely empty.  HOW does one respond to something so disturbing?

As I tried to go to sleep that night, the conversation kept swirling around in my brain.  I couldn’t reconcile the contempt, hostility, and malicious hatefulness that I had witnessed emanating from my mother

All of the feelings from my childhood came flooding back.  Her contempt when my father paid any type of attention to me.  My confusion as a young girl as to why my mother would be SO angry with me, when I had done nothing but try to have a normal father daughter relationship.

The longer I thought about it, the pieces began to fall into place.

My mother had begun to refer to my brother, A’s father, as her HUSBAND.  Therefore, A was the competition that I had been.  A was no longer a niece that she should lavish love on, she was the rival for the affection that my mother felt should be showered on her by my brother, her husband replacement.

So, tell me, is that jealousy or is that deranged?   download

I know what I think.



Keeping my Side of the Street Clean



I am at my mother’s.  As I have stated before I find this relationship to be difficult, she apparently does not.   She has no cognitive awareness of how mean and nasty she is.  I have always known, but was usually have in the wrapper so the vision of it had blurred edges.

Now I am sober, and I am seeing it with sharp, clear eyes, and it is really ugly.

Her responses to the most mundane questions are sharp and filled with anger.

I knew this would be the case, so I asked my sponsor how to handle these situations.  She told me that no matter what happens, keep my side of the street clean.  I am.

I am responding to every caustic remark with:

Why are you speaking to me that way?

Why are you so angry?

Why don’t you CALM DOWN and we can talk about it.

So far it has diffused her.  It has been a lot of work, but it is working, and I am riding the street cleaner to victory, SO FAR.

I am in the midst of working on my fourth step, so this visit is coming at a fortuitous time.  It is showing me so many reasons why I carry many of my resentments and fears.

As I have said before, my mother is an active alcoholic.  I learned all I know about how and when to drink from her and my father.

The first night here, it hit me like a load of bricks WHY I drank while sitting in front of stupid, blathering television shows, it is because SHE does.  It was like someone walked into the room and hit me in the head with a wine bottle.  DUH!!  It was so CLEAR  and scary, that I had to leave the room and retire. I visualized  myself sitting in that chair, age 79, sipping from that same overflowing wine glass, staring glassily at the television.  I shuddered.  That WAS me.

It no longer is, thanks to my HP thanks to AA, thanks to my continuously supportive sponsor, M, and all of you wonderful sober bloggers.

On to another day of trying to be a better person, and picking up the trash as I go.





Last night I watched a movie I had seen before.  Of course it was while I was drinking my way through a large bottle of wine.  I can recall hating the movie, thinking the plot was ridiculous and the acting terrible.  That being said, it was raining, and television really doesn’t offer much anymore, so I went with it.

As it began, I thought to myself, I am sure the plot will come back to me as I am watching, and I will remember it.  NOPE.

There was only one scene I vaguely remembered.

Yes, the movie had a thin plot line, and Cameron Diaz is a terrible actress, but I did not hate the movie.

When it was over, this terrible feeling washed over me.  It was my brain screaming, YOU ARE SUCH A FUCKING LOSER!  

For years I have sat on the couch every evening with tumbler after tumbler of wine going down my throat, missing everything around me, purposely making it hazy or nonexistent.  Conversations, movies, interactions with my kids and spouse.  All in a haze.

Yes, I was there, but I really wasn’t.

I can recall getting irrationally angry, yelling, screaming, laughing, crying, making slurry telephone calls, and sending stupid emails all in my “I’m not really that drunk, drunken stupor.”   I would wake up every morning, and have to replay the events of the past evening in my head.  Did I yell at someone?  Did I get in a fight with the husband, the children?  Was I slurring when I went to bed?  Did I say something snarky and roll over in a huff to pass out?

What a waste of a life.  

I frequently would tell myself that what I was doing wasn’t normal.

Normal people don’t start drinking mid afternoon and drink until the bottle is gone or 10 pm rolls around, which ever happens first.

Normal people don’t “pre-game” drinks in case one isn’t offered immediately upon arrival at an event.

Normal people don’t drink to get drunk EVERY FUCKING NIGHT.

Normal people remember conversations, events and what they say to their spouse or children.

I have wasted a lot of time being a drunken loser.

Time I will never get back.

It makes me feel terrible.