Here I am not only writing a blog about recovery, but I’m also writing a book about my 23 years of being a sober single parent. (And that is 23 years without a break, thank you.) Ask me about a topic in a sober parenting life and I bet I’ve got some kind of a true tale to tell of my experience, how I got through it and letting go of old resentments. So – with that being said – I can not remember the last time I’ve felt such a deep level of “being a work in progress”! Parts of me feel raw and anxious. I have only written a couple of times about my food sensitivities and how I have endured chronic physical pain. Which leads me to think about insomnia. It is quite challenging for me to sleep when I am not feeling 100%. During my drinking history, once I fell down a flight of stairs (ok, I fell down a flight of stairs 3 or 4 different times through the drinking years) I drank through that pain. The time my old boyfriend and I broke up? drank through the pain. The thing is, when I drank, as much as I wanted to, I could not really choose what I could and could not numb out. If I don’t feel the pain in my life when I drink, then I don’t feel the joy either. The chronic intestinal pain has been unusually intense. I must say, I hate writing about this just as much as I hate talking about this. But it is a fact in my life. I am not up to phone conversations because I do not like to say when I am not feeling well. Even when I do everything in my power and with doctor’s care, some times it still happens – ouch! It’s been extra challenging this month. I know I will get back in balance again, but for now I am not loving it. . . . So, I finally went out side and walked to check my mail box today. The honey suckle was in full bloom and the fragrance so strong that it stopped me and it held my full attention. So overwhelming of a fimaliar fragrance that I traveled through time back to 4th grade – I was walking to the lunch line at the school cafeteria where I was to meet my big brother because he had a dollar bill to buy us both lunch. The fence where us kids lined up for lunch was jam-packed with fragrant honey suckle. All it took was one nano-second and the joyful memory of the past suddenly was stronger than the pain I had been enduring in the present. Now that is only something that can happen when I am sober. As I said, I have been avoiding answering my phone – just not up to it. I did reach out to a few friends who I needed to get back to and I wrote them E mails saying “only to let you know, not to complain or even ask for help or advise, but my chronic intestinal pain has really knocked me out and I am just taking care of myself right now.” I tried my best to be calm and cool about it. I feel disappointed, of course. But the amazing thing is that I feel blessed to know that I have every thing I need. The balance of mind, body and spirit can be so delicate, but when I find that perfect balance, there is nothing stronger. And that is the blessing today – I intuitively know that I have everything I need. Of course this would not be my choice to live like this, but I do have the choice to practice acceptance, and acceptance is an incredibly powerful tool that can set me free every time, no matter how much it might hurt. If you ask me, sober pain is much better to have than drunk pain, because when I am sober, I can always see that I have everything I need.