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Unread 09-13-2013, 03:38 AM   #301
michaelc232
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Thanks Saint! I have thought about it, but have little ambition to pursue further education. I feel that in today's economy and workforce, degrees mean so little anymore. I have friends with masters degrees that can't find a job in their field of expertise. But thank you for the suggestion!

Today was pretty darn fabulous if I do say so myself! I had some drink cravings, but quickly thought myself through it. I had a very ample opportunity to purchase alcohol today, but chose not to. And I got some writing done, which made me feel accomplished!
BTW, the jerk that I was writing the essay for, that I talked about in my last post, still complained about his essay. He demanded a refund. I wanted to get upset, so I had to stop and have a quick little talk with myself. I told myself "Michael! You have two options here. Refuse his refund and get a negative review, which will hurt your customer income. Or, give him what he wants, and be done with the guy. But no amount of complaining is going to change these two options."
So long story short, I gave the guy his refund, and started working on other jobs that had been sent to me recently. I wrote a history paper today that my customer really liked, and have two essays to get done tomorrow.
So to wrap things up, life is good, I am happy, and I am sober. Blessings.

Michael
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Unread 09-13-2013, 07:57 AM   #302
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Hi Michael, good job working through your wanting to drink!

Love to hear you say "life is good, I am happy, and I am sober".

Nancy
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Unread 09-13-2013, 01:47 PM   #303
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MIchael,

Good job thinking through that first drink. COntinue to use your tools when the urge to drink arises.

Regards,
Saint
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Unread 09-13-2013, 10:35 PM   #304
michaelc232
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Thank you Nancy and Saint.

Right now I am slowly but surely working on step 4 of the AA program. What a big job! Making a "searching and fearless inventory of oneself" is a painful process. But I completely see how it is necessary and helpful in ones healing from their past, and journey towards sobriety. I am trying to discover something new about myself each day. Something that makes me, me. As alcoholics, we use alcohol as a way of escape. A way for us to get out of reality temporarily, so that we don't have to deal with real life in that moment. For me, and I think this is true for most alcoholics, I need to have what I am calling a "Sober Escape." Something healthy that we can use to get out of reality for a minute, and creatively or emotionally let our mind ease itself. For me, that is writing. When I am writing, whether it's an essay I am doing for money or working on my own Novel, I am able to completely escape for a while. When I grab a cup of coffee, put my headphones in, turn my music up and start typing, I go into a different place. It makes me feel as if I am creating a whole other world on paper. And in that moment, I am in control. The characters do what I tell them to, they think what I want them to think and react with the personality that I have given them. Perhaps that sounds a little narcissistic, but it is truly working for me.
So, right now, Michael is working on discovering Michael. The process is going to have it's ups and downs, but I will see it through to the end. Blessings.

Michael
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Unread 09-13-2013, 11:21 PM   #305
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Michael, Great job thinking through that urge to drink.

I do question the act of helping someone cheat by writing their essay.
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Unread 09-14-2013, 10:58 PM   #306
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Thank you R.Lee, and you are right. It is definitely not a noble cause.

I'm 2 weeks sober today. I had some severe cravings go on, but got through them. I haven't had any cravings that pushed me to the point of actually wanting to buy alcohol yet, so that is good. Today was a good day overall. Blessings.

Michael
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Unread 09-15-2013, 12:11 AM   #307
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Michael, Way to think through 1st drink. Sometimes it is one moment at a time. Call someone if you need to.
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Unread 09-15-2013, 01:55 PM   #308
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Michael,

You've had cravings the last two days. A suggestion.... how about calling someone today to let them know what you've been going through. You know break the ice so to speak . So when the time comes you'll be a little more inclined to reach out. Michael.... do what it takes to stay sober.

Continue to think through that first drink. Reread your posts from when you were sober, how happy you were. Keep that thought in your mind and recall it when you think of drinking. That's s what you're working for....

Hang in there!

Saint
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Unread 09-16-2013, 01:31 AM   #309
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Thanks Saint and R.Lee!

Today was pretty good. I just relaxed and chilled for most of the day. It felt good to rest. I'm getting ready to crash pretty soon. I have been LOVING the uninterrupted sleep that I am getting now that I am not drinking. The dark circles under my eyes are slowly fading away. Celebrated 13 days today. Blessings.

Michael
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Unread 09-16-2013, 06:04 AM   #310
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Way to go Michael! I'm glad you're sleep is improving. Not to sound like your Mother but it is important to get the sleep we need as well as good nutrition. It all helps towards maintaining sobriety early on in my opinion.

Glad to see you posting regularly Michael.

Regards,
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Unread 09-16-2013, 08:05 AM   #311
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Hi Michael, keep up the great work! As R.Lee and Saint mentioned, really think about having someone to call just in case. It's always good to have a back-up plan for anything.

Congrats!

Nancy
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Unread 09-16-2013, 05:29 PM   #312
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Glad to see you posting and helping others Michael. You have a lot to bring to the forum. Take care,

Frank
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Unread 09-16-2013, 06:01 PM   #313
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Michael, Keep up the great work one day at a time. Think through that 1st drink. Have phone numbers to call if you need to.
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Unread 09-17-2013, 02:47 AM   #314
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Thank you everyone. I have my sponsor's number programed into my phone for when I need to call him. If he does not answer, I have two other sober friends who have told me to call them anytime that I feel I am going to drink. I have the right tools, I simply need to use them when necessary. Today was a little on the crazy side. The PAWS have kicked in and the mood swings have been a little outrageous. My mind is fuzzy at times. I am normally a social butterfly, yet lately I have found myself getting nervous in a room full of people. For example, we had a guest speaker come in tonight, and I was at the church. It seemed like everyone showed up and came into the sanctuary at the same time. Everyone was talking, laughing, and having a great time. All of a sudden, I got extremely nervous and paranoid. I had to get up and leave, walk over to my house, and smoke a cigarette. After I calmed myself down I walked back over to the church and felt a little better. It's so true that the withdrawal effects get worse and worse each time you start and stop drinking again. Sometimes the thought even crosses my mind that I may have permanently messed my brain up. I'm sure that things will get better in time, just as they did the last time I got sober. It's almost 1 a.m. here so I am now celebrating 17 days sober. Blessings!

Michael
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Unread 09-17-2013, 12:21 PM   #315
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Michael, I'm glad that you have the phone numbers to use if you need too.

I do not like large groups of people. I get anxious too. Mine is a result of PTSD from Vietnam. Some times I have to leave & go outside get it together & come back in.

Congratulations on 17 day of sobriety.

It was good that you helped a new person last night here.
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Unread 09-17-2013, 10:34 PM   #316
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Michael,

Congrats on another day sober!

If your anxiety doesn't get better over time or should worsen seek the assistance of a Physician. I know when I was younger I drank to feel at ease in large crowds, parties, etc. Many people self medicate with their drug of choice for any number of reasons. Not saying this is the case with you but something to consider.

Hope your feeling better today. Remember your body is going through a lot of changes physically and mentally. The proper amount of rest and nutrition may help reduce your anxiety.

Take care and congrats on your sober time!!

Regards,
Saint
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Unread 09-18-2013, 03:22 AM   #317
michaelc232
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Thanks R.Lee and Saint! Today was much better. Celebrating 18 days! Blessings.

Michael
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Unread 09-18-2013, 09:13 AM   #318
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Great job on 18 days, Michael! You are again sounding like the Michael that I "know". Take care! Jenm
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Unread 09-18-2013, 10:06 AM   #319
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Michael, You just have to stay sober today. Good job on your 18 days.
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Unread 09-18-2013, 04:22 PM   #320
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Saint View Post
Michael,

Congrats on another day sober!

If your anxiety doesn't get better over time or should worsen seek the assistance of a Physician. I know when I was younger I drank to feel at ease in large crowds, parties, etc. Many people self medicate with their drug of choice for any number of reasons. Not saying this is the case with you but something to consider.

Hope your feeling better today. Remember your body is going through a lot of changes physically and mentally. The proper amount of rest and nutrition may help reduce your anxiety.

Take care and congrats on your sober time!!

Regards,
Saint
You described me and probably most on this forum Saint. It sure worked for me at parties etc., but of course it eventually turned on me going from super man to a soup sandwich. Thanks for bringing that up Saint as I need to hear it and often.

Frank
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Unread 09-18-2013, 09:44 PM   #321
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Hello Michael,

Maybe you read some of my comments in Tryns thread so I don't want to rehash all of that but maybe its worth considering some of that same stuff for you?

I continue to believe and see in myself that the reason I drank was certainly not just a chemical need of my body. I did not drink like I did because I liked being a drunken buffoon all the time... if I could just be normal I would have! But there were deep seeded wounds, fears, insecurities and emotional/spiritual/relational needs that I had which were not being delt with or processed in healthy ways.. and they continued to pile up week after week on top of all of my years of shame and guilt with drinking.

The social anxiety, along with urges/cravings and many other things are warning bells from your body/mind/spirit telling you... I need care- I need help! Drinking was always the Band-Aid... when we decide it can't be any more... we need to proceed to other healthy ways to deal with all this stuff.

I guess all that being said - the advice you have been given to reach out to people, to your sponsor a consoler, your church or whomever you can is great advice. Spill your guts to them, and allow them to "help". Also maybe consider this vein of thinking I mentioned above and in Tryn's thread- maybe there is some healing and freedom in that arena for you as well.

Just my thoughts Michael, I am praying for you, and rooting for you! Great Job on 18+ days now!!

Regards,

rix
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Unread 09-20-2013, 11:26 AM   #322
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Michael,

Glad you had a better day. We all deal with our own issues, 'crap' if you will, while getting sober. It wasn't easy for me..... going through a divorce which also meant I wouldn't be there everyday for my daughter whom I love very much. It was a very emotional time for me, I was emotionally exhausted and physically tired most of the time. I had to find a new place to live, move my belongings after over 20 years of marriage,etc. etc. Looking back I was depressed and looking for a reason to keep moving forward. I had made my mind up that I would put sobriety first above all else. I knew that if I didn't stay sober I wouldn't be able to be there for my daughter, to love and care for her the way she deserved to be. I sought counseling after several months of sobriety because I made an agreement with the ex I would seek out help if she thought I should(we were still living together at the time). The counseling helped reinforce all the reasons I wanted sobriety. I had to take care of me. If I didn't I wouldn't be able to be there for my daughter or others. I needed the counseling more that I thought or realized at the time. When my counselor told me there was no more reason to meet regularly I recall feeling like the rug was pulled from under me. Meeting regularly was like a security blanket for me and I had needed it more than I consciously realized or acknowledged. I tell you all this not because I want you to feel sorry for me because I don't. I just want you to realize that you can get through all your 'crap', you can deal with it. And I want you to realize that sometimes we are not the best judge of what is best for us. Sometimes others see things in us that we do not and we need to be humble and open enough, to trust enough in others to accept their suggestions and help.

Keep putting the work in and you will find the Michael you want to be. There is a better life for you without alcohol.

Regards,
Saint
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Unread 09-20-2013, 05:32 PM   #323
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Thank you everyone!

I would definitely agree that I need some outside help to get me through early sobriety. I would also agree that issues in my past, as I have mentioned on here before, are my number one issue. I have resentments, hurts, and scars from my past. I realize that I need to deal with these things if I am going to move forward. I do not have a plan in place right now on how I am going to get the psychological help that I need. I hope to get that worked out soon. Celebrating 20 days today. Blessings.

Michael
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Unread 09-20-2013, 08:37 PM   #324
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Good job Michael. Continue to keep sobriety first. We move towards that which we think about.
Think through that first drink.

Regards,
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Unread 09-24-2013, 01:40 PM   #325
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Hello everyone. Sorry that I have not posted in a few days, our internet has been down.
I am really enjoying being sober. Every day I seem to find something new to be grateful for. Right now, I am really enjoying not having paranoid episodes. When I was drinking, and even into my first 2-3 weeks sober, I was extremely paranoid and exhibited symptoms of OCD. Now that I am a little over 3 weeks sober, the paranoia has virtually disappeared. I have so much more control over my mind, and my emotions don't run away with me like they used to.
I continue to have really good days, and sometimes I have days that don't always meet my expectations. But I am fully persuaded that if my head hits the pillow at night and I have not drank, then that was a good day!
Another thing that is so awesome is that the people around me are so loving. I have been able to rebuild almost all of the relationships that I tore down while I was drinking. People seem to understand that the person that did them wrong was not the real Michael. It's so wonderful to feel accepted and loved even after my vile outbursts and emotional verbal slashings. I recognize that some people get sober, and are only able to rebuild a few, if any, relationships. Thinking of this makes me realize how blessed I am. I also recognize that if I go back to drinking it might not be so nice the next time, if there would even be a next time.
Yesterday, I really felt like drinking. I was experiencing alot of stress and anger and I knew that if I didn't do something I was going to buy alcohol. So for the first time ever, I called someone first. I called a very good friend of mine. She is like a mother to me, and has been sober for many years. She talked to me and encouraged me. She made me laugh, and put me in the right perspective. I have always been so reluctant to reach out for help in those desperate moments, but I am so glad that I did.
Life is good, and I am so grateful to be sober. Celebrating 24 days today. Blessings!

Michael
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Unread 09-24-2013, 06:06 PM   #326
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Nichael, You did the right thing when that urge came yesterday. Just think what you would feel like today if you drank yesterday instead of calling a sober person.

We all have good & bad days. We have to deal with them just like drinking. Think through that 1st action. If needed call someone.

You are doing the right things keep it up.
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Unread 09-24-2013, 11:12 PM   #327
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Wow, proud of you Michael. Things are never as bad as we imagine them. So happy you reached out. Glad you added another tool to your toolbox!

Keep up the good work Michael.

Regards,
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Unread 09-25-2013, 07:43 AM   #328
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Hi Michael, ditto everything R. Lee and Saint said too!

I'm very proud of you!

Nancy
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Unread 09-27-2013, 02:29 PM   #329
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Thanks everyone for the encouragement! Our internet has continued to have issues, so I am still only able to post every few days when I can make it down to the library.
Everything is going good for me. I am continuing to think through the first drink, and make it one day at a time. My emotional stability and clarity continue to increase each day.
I went to the hospital with my Pastor today to visit a guy that used to go to our church. He just recently had surgery on his legs for the 3rd or 4th time because of circulation issues. He abused Meth for several years and has continued to use alcohol. He is a hard working man and stayed healthy for many years, but now all of his addictions are catching up with him. Watching him lay there in that bed in terrible pain, knowing that the surgery may not even work, was surreal. It made me realize how much harder I need to work to maintain sobriety. Some people die quickly from their addictions, while others are banished to a long life of suffering and regret. I'm grateful to be alive today, and so glad to be sober. Blessings.

Michael
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Unread 09-27-2013, 10:56 PM   #330
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Michael, You are working a good program & it is working just for today.
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Unread 09-28-2013, 09:41 AM   #331
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Hi Michael!

I'm so proud of you! One day at a time. It is good for us to see an example of what we could look like. It is amazing to me how our minds can make us think that our bodies are just fine with all of this poison we continue to put inside ourselves. Alcoholic liver disease has little to no symptoms at first. I can tell you this because I've seen it with one of my family members. The swelling of the body, infections, hospitalizations for weeks, emergency surgery, unable to get comfortable or even get up out of bed, it is an ugly, ugly sight to see. And it could be any of us if we continue to drink. I am so very grateful that The Lord took away my need to "fill up my empty space" with alcohol. Instead I fill it up with Him! Take care! Jenm
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Unread 09-30-2013, 03:49 PM   #332
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Thanks R.Lee and JenM! Everything is going good. I'm celebrating one month sober today!
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Unread 09-30-2013, 04:49 PM   #333
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Congratulations on one month Michael!

Fabulous!

Nancy
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Unread 09-30-2013, 05:09 PM   #334
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Congratulations Michael!!!

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Unread 09-30-2013, 10:33 PM   #335
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Michael, Great job. Wow one month sober. Keep doing what you are doing. You just have to do it one day at a time.
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Unread 10-01-2013, 11:50 AM   #336
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WAY TO GO, MICHAEL!

I can "see" your happiness in your words. Do not forget this feeling when temptation happens. We are never free from temptation, but we have a spiritual "took kit" that we can use when it happens. Take care and I'm proud of you! Jenm
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Unread 10-01-2013, 03:18 PM   #337
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Hi Michael,

Congrats on 30 days! When the high/novelty of staying sober wore off I would always give in to the urge. For me it took just putting it off knowing full well that I wouldn't be able fight it the following day, but just for kicks (miserable kicks) I just did it anyway and it worked. You know it's going to happen so just try it. Sit on your hands. Put it off. It gets easier! Like Lee said; "If I can do it anyone can".

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Unread 10-01-2013, 11:27 PM   #338
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Michael,

Great!!! congrats on your 1 MONTH sober... way to go friend... One day at a time!

Regards,
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Unread 10-02-2013, 09:53 AM   #339
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Ashwin,

Great to see you posting!

Regards,
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Unread 10-02-2013, 12:13 PM   #340
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Many congrats, Michael. I hope I can one day say the same.
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Unread 10-02-2013, 06:14 PM   #341
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Same here Ashwin, nice to see you posting.

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Unread 10-02-2013, 10:27 PM   #342
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Ashwin, How are you doing? Are you sober?
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Unread 10-08-2013, 12:50 AM   #343
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Michael,
How have you been?

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Unread 10-08-2013, 11:59 AM   #344
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Michael, it concerns us when we don't hear from you.
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Unread 10-08-2013, 10:46 PM   #345
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Michael, What is going on? You are missing in action.
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Unread 10-09-2013, 07:42 AM   #346
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Quote:
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Michael, What is going on? You are missing in action.
Ditto!

Please check in when you can Michael.

Nancy
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Unread 10-09-2013, 01:08 PM   #347
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Hey everyone. I am so terribly sorry to have worried yall. Our internet has been down for some time now, so I am still only able to post from the library. I am still sober, and doing great! My clarity has completely returned to me, and I am truly enjoying life again. I have taken the steps to finally forgive some people that I have held resentments against for so long. Oh how freeing it is to release someone and no longer harbor anger and hatred! Life is good, and I am celebrating 39 days today. Blessings!

Michael
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Unread 10-09-2013, 03:50 PM   #348
Saint
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Michael,

Great news!! Very happy for you. It is great to hear you happy and moving forward. Keep working it!

Regards,
Saint
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Unread 10-09-2013, 06:35 PM   #349
R. Lee
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Michael, Good job. One day at a time.
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Unread 10-09-2013, 07:35 PM   #350
NancyB
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Thanks for checking in Michael! Congrats on 39 days - you're really doing great!

Nancy
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