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Bits of Hope While Crazies Surround Us!

This talk was recorded the day after Thanksgiving, and leading into the Holiday Season. Fresh into the crazy! By continually learning to and gaining tools to maneuver through this time of year, or through any groups or gatherings, with some sense of sanity. Fr. Tom shares insights on how we can do better during get-togethers of any kind and learn more about ourselves. When we are in recovery, somethings can seem like a crisis, whether new or having been around for a few days.

Fr. Tom talks about being able to wake up in the morning without dread and learn how to celebrate life. By reading, writing, and meditating and not wasting time on things we cannot change, really frees up your days. We learn we can not change the past, but we can better our future. By coming into the program, we hopefully have received the Gift Of Desperation. We often don’t realize it’s a gift for a very long time.

At this retreat Fr. Tom has a special guest, Dr. Mary cross. Dr. Cross touches on the benefits of the 11th Step and Conscious Contact in your daily practices. As we awaken in our recovery, we see our “dry bones” and may recognize for the very first time that our life was a train wreck. We may recognize that we were so angry because we were so scared. We learn how to sidestep traps by responding to the crazies rather than reacting. We practice learning how not to say everything we are thinking.

We only have today to live, that 24 hours is a gift. We learn how to do this by practicing with the tools we have picked up in our recovery and not thinking or projecting into the future, that’s insanity.

Practicing this to the best of our ability, we can learn to lessen the crazy! This is the freedom that comes by Living Life One day At A Time. (11/19)

Honesty Gets Us Sober,

and Tolerance Keeps Us Sober

Making mistakes is important in recovery. If something doesn’t work, we can begin again. For those of us who have been around for a while, it might be time to try something new — maybe begin to review our days and looking for grace, kindness, and mercy. When you let this energy flow doors open, kindness and grace happen.

Begin to train your eyes to see all that is beautiful and full of life. You will develop your own experiences of God. Fr. Toms explains how to open our hearts and have a richer recovery program — living more authentic little by little, coming back to life. (11/19)

Stop Fighting Everything All The Time…

In this series Fr. Tom discusses topics like:

Are you miserable enough to be welcomed in? We are so glad to see you.
We often don’t know what healthy looks like when we're used to unhealthy.

If we haven’t had any examples of sanity, it may be difficult to know what sanity looks like.
What do we do when we come to and wake up, to a lot of chaos.

In recovery, we gain tools to learn how to be vulnerable and transparent with sponsors, mentors and our peers. We learn how to participate in life as human beings by waking up and coming to.
In the program, we learn how to be and let other people be. Instead of pushing people away we let them in. These are some of the tools that we gain that we may be astonished! Learning how to let go of the past and let go of the future to practice being in the moment. (9/19)

Learning How To Live Your Life, And Letting Others Live Theirs

There is freedom when you practice letting go. By practicing being present, being here, you can develop a sense of peace, a chance to listen. It takes a while in recovery, and we learn by practicing the principles in our daily living. When you lose faith and hope it’s time to HALT and take time for some self-care. The result of any addiction is isolation. The Gift Of Desperation, or G.O.D., is a Great Gift. In Recovery, you are not alone. Our program offers tools to reconnect and gain back little bits of hope and sanity. Through the history of Alcoholics Anonymous, we learn how much work and practice went into getting us to where we are today. One day at a time! We understand because we are the same. We all get to make a million mistakes, and with each other, and the program, we can get back on track. Stay and look for the similarities and not the differences. The Steps help us make progress, and that is where Miracles Happen by learning how to live your life and let others live theirs. Your life can become much Lighter! (7/19)

Secrets Have Power - Telling Our Story Heals

There is healing in telling our story. From sharing our stories, we learn to identify with other people’s stories. When we share stories of struggles and joys, our lives become so much better.

We soon realized we have all come back from hard lives and situations. Knowing we’re not alone and finding that common ground with a common solution. Finding hope and help through generations of alcoholism, addiction, and dependencies where there has been isolation, misery, shame, and secrets. Through our stories, we create a kinship based on common suffering, finding that we are not alone. In recovery, we get to wake up and start looking at the damage and the steps to repair it. Taking care of unfinished business and no longer drowning in self-centered fear. Finding out we are not alone and don’t have to recover on our own! Having hope and help as we continue on the journey of recovery, sharing stories with others. (5/19)

Show Up, Pay Attention, Tell The Truth And Let Go Of The Results
The program is for living. Many of us know how to survive, but not live. Our survival skills have helped us function to this point because of our denial and survival skills we don’t recognize how crazy we may be.
The program offers us a reprieve from the worst of our crazy. We learn that there is freedom in acceptance. As we ask for our defects to be removed, we are reminded they are not erased.
We recognize we truly are humans being, not human doings. When we feel exhausted, or overwhelmed, we can use the tools of Al-Anon. If you deal with the public, you need Al-Anon.
We are friends, companions, and allies in a world filled where humanity could use Al-Anon. We learn to have the life of a grown-up. Becoming less obsessed with the past and coming into the present to heal. Recovery helps us feel better, do everything better, not perfect, as we learn to allow our Higher Power to sort it out. (4/19)

Balance Through Work, Love, & Play

When in recovery having worked the steps the next phase is emotional balance. You may ask what is that? Father Tom gives guidance on how to bring balance to your life through work, love, and play and learning how to make decisions while serene, not in the H.A.L.T.  Hungry, angry, lonely, tired crazy stages.
Breathe deeply, don’t get discouraged, healing takes time. Recovery takes a while, recognize that you are growing and changing also. Continued written inventory is helpful in recognizing your growth. Reflect on what stands in the way of your usefulness to God and others. Then ask your Higher Power to show you what small changes can you make to make a big difference. This is slow, gradual growth. Remember to take what you need and leave the rest. (1/19)

The Flexible, Practical, Useful Twelve Steps

Are we willing to get well someone else’s way? Are we willing to have a beginner’s mind as a basis for daily living? Can we turn things over to God’s good care as a way to get out of the argument and stop fighting? While going through the 12 Steps, Fr. Tom W. tackles hard issues such as intolerance, bigotry, isolation, and feeling disconnected. Tom shares his understanding of God and what to do when you don’t have enough hope. What do we do about anger in ourselves and from others? Tom discusses what healthy looks and feels like, what makes a good share at a meeting and what restored to sanity means. It’s not enough just being in recovery, it’s finding the joy in recovery. (7/18)

Take What You Need And Leave The Rest

It’s easy to take what we want and leave the rest, but what if we take what we need?  Recovery is learning that we have our own stuff to deal with.  We wish we could change others – but we can’t.  In these great talks for those of us who love an alcoholic or addict, Father Tom talks about some of the changes we need to participate in.  And he shows us how to bring willingness to the changes. 

Father Tom discusses feelings.  Are we aware when we are feeling fear?  Or do we just get mad?  He talks about decision making.  Father Tom discusses ways to evaluate our emotional maturity.  He talks about approval seeking, paying attention rather than obsessing, and confusing love and pity.  These wonderful talks are not to be missed!  (6/18)

Waking Up To The Here And Now

In these wonderful talks, Father Tom W. shares with us how to focus on the present, where we are continually restored to sanity. Living in the present is where we find serenity, our truth, and our HP.  Do we have a willingness to respond?  

Recovery is an ongoing process.  We don’t get fixed, we get to wake up.  And if we are willing, we keep waking up.  Fr. Tom reminds us to pay attention and not get discouraged.   Do what works.  Keep growing.  Keep learning new things.

Whether you are a newcomer or have been in the program for a long time, these talks expand our awareness, recovery, and gratitude. (1/18)