by Jen Smith
I’m supposed to accept everything in my life at this moment as exactly the way it’s supposed to be. But I don’t want to. There are parts that I don’t particularly like and I can rationalize quite well around my perceived notion that these things are not the way they are supposed to be. Unfortunately I also believe that my resistance to the moment being as is, and lack of acceptance, prolongs and increases my suffering. So what’s a girl to do? Continue reading
by Jen Smith
I’m a big believer in positive thinking. As many great modern spiritual teachers insist, our thoughts are very powerful and have a huge affect on the world around us including creating our future. I know this and believe this and have gotten better at paying attention to my thoughts keeping them in line with the positive energy flow that I feel is all around us to tap into. Despite all of this there is one area in my life where I tend to fail at positive thinking way more often than I would like to admit and that’s my work life. Continue reading
I’ve been thinking a lot about spirituality lately, particularly what it is and what it isn’t. I can look it up like anyone else and get random people who perhaps are spiritual like Ewert Cousins who say spirituality is a belief in an ultimate or an alleged immaterial reality. I like the immaterial part because for sure being materialistic is not spiritual. Then there’s Philip Sheldrake who says spirituality is an inner path enabling a person to discover the essence of her being; or the deepest values and meanings by which people live. Now this is a little better but the inner path part implies that you can be spiritual all by yourself. I’m not so sure about this; I’m starting to believe that spirituality has to do with personal relations between human beings and maybe animals too. Continue reading
My family recently tried to get together in Florida. It didn’t go so well. My family is dysfunctional due to generational alcoholism. My brother and sister-in-law from Boston made last minute plans to stay in Miami Beach and expected me, our mother, and my other brother and sister to work around their last minute plans and gather at Miami Beach. Mine, my husband’s and my son’s plans to be in Florida for the week were made months prior and we were just waiting for my sister-in-law in order to finalize our trip details. She never called me with her plans. I eventually found out from my mother what days they were going to be in Miami Beach, Monday through Thursday and that Monday was the day my sister-in-law decided was best for her to have the extended family visit. My son had been invited to stay in Miami with them but in the last conversation I had had with my sister-in-law she said she wasn’t sure there would be room for my son and it would depend on the hotel room situation. Two days before I was to leave I decided to just assume it would be okay for my son to stay with them and began to make my final plans. Continue reading
Guest post by Jaron
Hi my name is Jaron, I’m 25 and I live in jail. I’m halfway home which means I’ve been in for a year and have another year to go. My good friend and adopted mother Jen, (I kind of just claimed her as one of my Moms and I guess she’s cool with it) asked me to write a story for her blog. I’m going to start this story by saying that I don’t know what a blog is but fuck it- here goes.
So like I said I’m in jail doing two years and this isn’t my first rodeo. One way or another all of my crimes are drug related. You would think that after the first few times I would have learned my lesson but nope, not this guy. Continue reading
1. What does it mean to be co-dependent? Why would Jen feel responsible for Greg’s behavior and actions? For example, when Jen went skiing in Tahoe with Gunner, Greg picked her up after taking way too much Ecstasy and Jen felt responsible for Greg’s absurd behavior. Consider the implications emotionally of feeling responsible for someone else’s insane behavior.
2. Discuss the ways Greg distanced Jen from her family. For example, having her mother help clean up the apartment she left, and calling Jen’s mother and telling her Jen had taken off with his kid and was messed up on drugs and that he was very worried about her. Consider the impact on Jen. Is this consistent with emotional abuse? What might Greg have been trying to accomplish? How did it serve his needs? Continue reading
The Christmas season is passed and I’m grateful. I didn’t drink and I didn’t do anything to make things with my family worse although I had a bit of a realization where my brother is concerned. I’ve always sought out approval from my very successful (monetarily) big brother or at least any indication that he might actually care about me. Both seem to be more unreachable every time I see him which is rare, twice a year at the most. When we were younger our father died a month after I turned 14. My two brothers and sister were out of the house as they were much older than me. My mother got a night time job and I was left alone. My oldest brother and sister tried to help my mom with me as they could but the brother in question never came around, never called, never concerned himself with me in any way what-so-ever. I never thought about this at the time but as I’ve grown in sobriety and learned how to truly care for people I’ve realized that this was a pretty crappy thing to do to someone.
In early sobriety about six years ago I moved from the mid west back to the east coast where my family resides in hopes to develop healthy bonds with members of my family for my young son so that he would have more people in his life that loved him. Continue reading
I spent a weekend at a women’s recovery conference and I am certain there is nothing more powerful in recovery than woman helping and supporting other woman. When I finally got into recovery I wanted nothing to do with women. I preferred to hang around with people I could manipulate and control and they were the men. I did not relate well at all with other women. The first person I approached when I went to my first recovery meeting was the biggest bad-ass looking biker guy I could find. Luckily for me there was one right out in front and all by himself on a bench. Going up to this huge scary guy and plopping myself next to him was no problem for me, but the thought of going up to a woman and sitting next to her was terrifying. It was unthinkable to the point that it never even crossed my mind. Continue reading