Deep Thoughts by Babybloomr

So I’m sitting in an Al-Anon meeting the other day…

(Yeah, we’re a big fan of 12 Step meetings around here. Been going for like, 20 years. Wonderful program, I highly recommend it. Also? You hear great stuff in there and usually laugh really hard at least once. Love my Al-Anon peeps.)

Anyway, as I was saying. A woman there was talking about how sometimes when she overreacts to something someone says or something that happens during her day, she takes that as a sign that she needs to stop and ask herself what’s really going on inside. She said it like this: “I’ve learned that when my reaction is hysterical, the reason is usually historical.”

Isn’t that great?! I just loved that, and it made so much sense to me. One of my goals in my never-ending quest to Be A Grown-Up is to learn the difference between reacting and responding. The first one is knee-jerk instinctive, and happens without even thinking about it. The second one is more thought-out and self-aware. Now I’m not a real volatile person so my reactions, even to negative things, are rarely explosive or over the top. But I do know that sometimes when something hits me the wrong way, or makes me feel kind of anxious or annoyed it may have more to do with my past than my present circumstances. Russ calls those things ‘anchors’– they’re invisible on the surface but underneath it all there is something that connects you to a heavy weight that can drag you down. It may go back to childhood, or just an experience in my life that deeply affected me but the bottom line is that when I have a strong reaction to a person, place or thing that seems a little out of line with what the circumstances are, I’ve learned to recognize that as an anchor and give it a second look. It doesn’t have to be a big deal or send me running screaming to a therapist or anything, it can be as simple as stopping a second and saying, “Whoa, what was THAT about?” Usually I can identify the real source of the reaction pretty quickly, and honestly? The identification is really more than half the battle! When I know what is yanking my chain and why, then I can choose how I want to respond instead of just being swept along with the feelings of the moment. The most obvious example is the classic “stuff and blow” syndrome– like when something is bothering you and you just keep stuffing it down and then out of nowhere you blow up at something completely unrelated and relatively innocuous…

What? Just me?

Oh come on, YOU know what I’m talking about! Around here that can look something like this: The house is getting messier and messier, no one is picking up after themselves, backpacks and overflowing suitcases are lying around willy-nilly, and I am getting more and more frustrated about it. However, I haven’t actually sat down and talked about it and made sure that everyone knows what is expected of them and expressed the fact that the messiness really bothers me. But when one of the girls needs me to run something by their school that they forgot, suddenly I am huffing and puffing and saying things like, “Hello, I have a schedule too, I have things that need to get done today and I do not have time to drop everything just because you didn’t take care of your responsibilities blah blah blah huff puff…” Reality check!  Everyone forgets things occasionally (myself included), this is the exception rather than the rule, it is NOT a big deal, so what is my problem? Well, my problem is that the state of the house is making me feel like my needs don’t count and don’t matter to anyone.  I feel disrespected and ignored, which actually has NOTHING to do with what I am currently (over)reacting to, and everything to do with the fact that this is hitting an anchor in me– it is reminding me of other times in my life that it has been up to me to make my wishes known and to be clear about what I expect from the people closest to me, and I didn’t do that and it didn’t feel good. So the truth is, the person that has really let me down and ignored my feelings is… me. And when I step back and take a moment to examine why this little situation is getting all blown out of proportion inside, it suddenly makes sense to me. I get it– I have choices, I can change this, I don’t have to feel this way.

Now granted, that is a silly little example of something that really doesn’t matter much in the long run. But it is indicative of the pattern, and the reason I loved hearing about ‘the hysterical reaction revealing a historical reason’ is that now it is stuck in my brain and can help serve as a shortcut to my enlightenment! Now when I find myself in a situation like that–or even a more serious, important one– that little bumper sticker of a phrase will pop into my head and hopefully I will save myself some time, energy and angst. Because as Truman Capote used to say, “Life is too short– and too long– for that!”

So what about you guys? Got any thoughts on the subject? Got any favorite sayings or quotes that have helped you? Share ‘em with the class!

51 Responses

  1. MostlySunny

    OH, GOLLY, GEE WHIZ! Did you have to bring that up? You mean we can’t blame anybody else anymore?

    Yep – it comes back to personal responsibility doesn’t it – for communicating and all that. Shouldn’t the people living in my house just sort of “know”? Read my mind? Pitch in and help because…well, just because?

    Yep – the energy and angst (I love that word) we expend when we should just look in the mirror and say “You big dummy, it’s your fault. It’s up to you!”

    Then again, looking in the mirror I get distracted ’cause I always find something that needs to be tweezed, squeezed or concealed!

    Hangeth thou in there! (KJV)

  2. jonny

    OK, first the Mr. Editor part, “currently (over)reacting to,” you missed a space.

    Not only do we have anchors, but land mines, depth bombs, “sleepers,” all sorts of stuff in us we often have no idea is there until the moment, time, person, circumstances, conditions, etc. are right.

    The last few weeks I’ve had to deal with a lot of why I am the way I am, who I am, what I’ve become to a degree, the why of it. I’ve also been ‘second looking’ myself for around six years now and still feel I’m barely scratching the surfice. I really don’t like who I am most of the time, so working on the whys of that as well. Also dealing with what was used as a ‘not born normal’ child to protective himself from two very messed up, well meaning, but abusive/destructive/control freak, not normal parents. And to realize that these very twisted things that were used by a three year old and up are in reality, and have become even more so as an adult, very abusive and destructive not only to himself, but those trying their best to reach out to him in love, as well as others along the way. You want to catch me in the act of starting to behave oddly, be a little, or more than a little. hysterical, just watch what happens when I sudenly realize I’m with someone who truly cares for me, or, Lord forbid, I actually realize I’m in the middle of doing something well, or better than well! I also have a REALLY messy time being around other Christians who all seem to be well adjusted. For some reason it can really un-adjust me. Also, being in an uncontroled situation were I suddenly have to trust other Christians can make me lose a lot of sleep at nights.

    A catch phrase or saying… ‘You reap what you sow’?? For many years my dad would constantly tell me, after I did something I really had no idea why I did it, “Weren’t you thinking about the consequences!?!” or “What were you thinking!?!” I don’t mean to shuck any responsiblity on my part, but I now ask the same thing of him and my mom. They seem to be reaping what they have sown in their children, and I believe, at least my dad, has been feeling the weight of it. I don’t think any of us like the stale-mate positon we all seem to be in, but, at least myself, do not see any other alternative, choice at the moment. Especially when trust just does not, and probably never truly has, existed, or as with many other things, been pretty badly abused. I think second looking is not a bad idea, or trying to pay some serious attention to how others respond to the ‘you’ in things. One saying I find to be quite accurate, and I may be repeating myself here again, but usually the one responsible for the greatest evil in any given situation is the one least aware of their own weaknesses. I guess, speaking for myself, one can never be too good of a listener.

    There was something else that came to mind ont his topic, but can’t remember it now. If I do, I’ll share it with any of the other limit pushers on board here.


    Oh, and thanks for bringing this up, Tori.


    OK – am commenting as I read, since you are so good at keeping up w/ my sporadic brain flurries!
    What? Al-Anon? How did yall get into that? Thought it was folks trying to quit drinking, & you have spoken out publically about having a glass of wine here & there.
    As per the comment of hysterical/historical – I can certainly relate. I am a very, unfortunately at times, extremely impulsive, spontaneous, (some call it undisciplined and untactful), emotional person.
    So, I have learned that when I react strongly, (thats saying it mildly) there is a definite hidden thang goin on inside of me that I have to address – a lesson that needs learning inside of my make-up/personality/growth. Not saying a negative action/reaction – but ANY strong, I mean POWERFULLY STRONG EMOTIONAL RESPONSE, I find is usually connected to something that I am going tru, or need to work on in my life. I am a very open book, outspoken, inquisitive, and very friendly – but it is widely known in my circles that ya are gonna know whats on my mind, I don’t bite my tongue, tho it is needed from time to time. Something that I am constantly working on – my presentations of emotions.
    I feel ya when ya said the stuff about stopping and saying “whoa, what was that about?” thats what i do when a situation arises – those are my exact words/thoughts.
    I ahve spent several years, and now a condensed year examining miotives, emotions, reactions – anaklyzing it, readjusting thought patterns, expectations, sources of indignation/aggitation/anger/frustration/depression.

    Was good to hear that someone else does/feel somewhat the same – that it is not just possibly my burned out brain cells – which i really claim have been renewed by the renewing of mind through the Word, but the eneny will try to trip me up – especially w/ my OWN feelings/ etc. Good to see that someone else has come to some of the same conclusions that I have after dissecting, analyzing all my different emtional reactions.

  4. jonny

    “For over 55 years, Al-Anon (which includes Alateen for younger members) has been offering strength and hope for friends and families of problem drinkers. It is estimated that each alcoholic affects the lives of at least four other people… alcoholism is truly a family disease. No matter what relationship you have with an alcoholic, whether they are still drinking or not, all who have been affected by someone else’s drinking can find solutions that lead to serenity in the Al-Anon/Alateen fellowship.”

  5. LindaB

    Whoa! This is really turning into a group therapy session!

    I am usually very easy going, patient to a fault, understanding, and all that stuff. But Tori, I can really relate to your feelings about the house getting so messy that you feel frustrated and powerless and striking out at others whom you feel are not helping at all! I do that! But there are plenty of people around here to tell me what my problem is!!! I just have to resist the urge to take their heads off!

    My mother used to tell me this, and though it’s not deep or psychologically insightful, it works for me. She said, “In ten years, will this problem (the one I’m currently whining about) make any difference to you?” And I start trying to remember what was buggin’ me ten years ago, and I can’t think of anything! So, I know she’s got something there! In fact, I can’t remember what was bothering me ONE year ago! Of course, my memory isn’t as good as it used to be……but that’s another topic.

    Ya know, that would be a good topic sometime, Tori! You could ask us all, “What one piece of advice did your mother or father give you about life that you have found helpful?”

  6. jonny

    Some things that have bothered me more than ten years ago still come up and haunt me from time to time.

  7. chillybean

    Okay, so lots of things bother me far too often than they should. However, one little phrase that my favorite grad school professor taught me was “Panic Slowly.” (She and her colleagues developed this while steering a large houseboat on the Mississippi one summer. She taught this to me as I FREAKED out looking at the course syllabus.)

    Anywho…when I am getting to the boiling point over, let’s say, scraps of paper all over the floor from little kids using scissors, I like to ponder the statement, slow down, think, and then panic (only if necessary!)

  8. swerchon

    I come from a home of a alcoholic father and I have seen the HORRIBLE things which alcohol does not only to the alcoholic but to the whole family. This has and will always be with me, it is my past but it is NOT my future. I have put those memories in my “rear-view mirror” where they belong and have since forgiven my father thanks to my HEAVENLY FATHER.

    Recently on the Gaither Alaskan cruise I heard Gloria Gaither speak and she had said “our fathers give us our identifies”. When I heard this it struck a chord within me. Could I blame my father for some of personality flaws (maybe) or do I have a role in that development?

    When things get tough, or if I try to work on my identity/personality flaws e.g. SHYNESS etc. I realize that I have something living inside of me….I repeat my “mantra” FAR GREATER IS HE THAT IS IN ME THAN HE THAT IS OF THIS WORLD. Powerful words for me, keeps me going and helps me through all kinds of stuff.

  9. themema

    I like hysterical/historical. That’s great to remember and ponder.

    As for family/friend dynamics~~~~~Do I burn while I wait for someone to read my mind.
    If I can’t read your mind….. why do I think you can read mine?

    Did I send an “I” message? Or a “YOU” message
    “I” messages express your needs. “YOU” messages assign blame to another.

  10. auburn60

    Well,indeed, this is all very deep and reminds me of the little bit of history Russ and I were able to share the last time I saw him. (Still waiting to meet at Starbuck’s over pumpkin lattes to continue the conversation.)
    Because of my family background I have a purely visceral response when conflict is going on around me and voices reach a certain pitch in anger or just when people seem ‘out of control’–it is a physical response that I feel to this day that takes me back to a childhood and teenage-hood of abuse,chaos and insecurity. My heart starts to pound,I can’t breathe and I have vertigo and feel a need to rush in and ‘make everybody happy’ or just stop the conflict. I don’t DO that, mind you, but that is my initial response. I think it is a version of ‘fight or flight’–my mind/body connection is telling me that I may not be safe and to do something. Clearly an ‘anchor’. So yeah, I’ve learned to state pretty clearly what I need and how I’m feeling to the people I live with.I can’t really afford to let too many things be out of my control. As I told Russ–some days I think I’m pretty far along in the process of being OK. Some days-not so much. I think I may even analyze my own emotional responses more than the average person because ‘normal responses’ were never modelled for me.
    So now I have a new test phrase to say to myself: Hysterical or Historical?

  11. LindaB

    Chillybean, I love that——-“Panic Slowly”!!! I gotta remember that one! Is that like “hurry up and wait”?? LOL

    I feel so bad for you folks that had such depressing childhoods! I can’t imagine how life would be for those whose parent or parents were abusive and neglectful. I am humbled by your grace…………and from getting to know you on this blog, how nice you turned out to be! Must have been your own personal strength of character!

  12. LindaB

    ……….OR, the life-changing, mind-altering, heart-fixin’ love of God!

  13. delightedabroad

    Whoa, I have the feeling as if I could write pages this time ! Well, my history is also one of child abuse (different types) and a family where you only show a glimpse of feelings and DON’T EVER talk of personal feelings/problems. So yes, Tori, this topic is fitting. I’m SO grateful that God caught me, changed me and still is – good friends even say that today I’m a totally different person. Which is not true but I get nearer and nearer to the person God had originally created. Unlike to some of you I usually don’t ‘explode’ because I’ve learned over decades to keep self-control. (The last couple of years I have realized how life could be much easier when I show/tell what I need/like – for me AND for those surrounding me !) But the feelings are there anyway, just inside ! And you’re right it helps a lot to ask yourself ‘why do I feel this way’. Unfortunately my ‘self-control training’ was so intense that my reactions in some situations became reflex-like. At this point the ‘self-questioning’ doesn’t work.

    Themema, these “I” messages became a very important part in my life ! I think the most difficult part is to say CLEARLY what you want to say EVEN in “I” messages. To give you a typical (though a bit stupid) example: she states that the garbage can ‘should be taken out’, he just says ‘ok, I’ve heard it’. So what she really wanted to say was ‘I’d like you to take out the garbage’. Then he can agree (or not…). Do you get what I mean ?

  14. jonny

    Yes, I do get what you mean delighted. One thing I was born with, or without, was the ability to read between the lines well, if at all at times. REALLY challenging for me. And most women I’ve dated seen to not be able to ‘give it to me straight.’ Challenging.

    I can also, completely, relate to what Auburn60 shared. I’m in a bit of a mess right now with one person because of how I reacted in attempting to keep the peace, and reach out to them. It was taken the wrong way. Also, because of some things I was born with, and possibly because of what I experienced growing up, I don’t handle game playing very well. At all.

    Something all of us kids somehow decided growing up, and without consulting each other, is that we would not be, or be the opposite of how we preceved our parents to be.

    Another thing I find interesting, now mom only has sisters. No brothers. All the boys born to them, all in their forties now, have chosen not to have children, or been very careful about that. At least for my brother and myself, we are extremely cautious with who would be the mother of our children.

    Oh, and my brother grew up holding things in and suffered the consequences, especially health wise. I rarely kept things in growing up.

  15. delightedabroad

    Yeah, right that’s the trouble with holding things in: it’s easy for the others but somehow destructive for yourself. I know.


    Oh, LindaB & Tori – I just love waking up to coffee w/ you guys, and the rest of the gang! Thanks, jonny, for helping me understand the al-anon thing. Those statistics were gruesome, huh? But, hey Auburn – i have found out that there are some thngs – like things in me, immediately associated w/ me – that i CAN control – -but the ultimate control is in His hands, & my faith in Jesus is the sustaining factor. He knows whats gonna happened next year, right now! I used to also be a control freak – attempting to control my environment & others in it – but there are too many, waaaaay too many factors out there that are beyond my control. Shucks – i can’t even control the blinking of my eyes or beating of my heart?
    jonny – im w/ you on the no-games part! I just,unfortunatly, am soooo far on the other end now after playing too many of all sorts of games – i just blurt stuff right out there, lots of times w/out thinking. but, once again, there’s no doubt what page I’m on. have played too many serious games, dangerous games – life is shorter than we think!

    time for class!

  17. meb

    Were you eavesdropping on the conversation I had with my hair dresser the other day? It was very similar to this. One of the things she said and it really resonated with me is, “their stuff is not my stuff. I can be there to help or offer support, but I can not take on the emotional baggage of their stuff if I am not directly involved in the situation.” Sadly she and her husband are having to deal with his grown daughters problems right now, and it is making life difficult for all.

    But when she said this I realized that I do the same thing. I take on the responsibility for all these other things that I have no control over and shouldn’t load myself down with either. They aren’t mine. And wanting to be the “perfect child” (43 years later) I still feel like I have to make everything just right. I can’t take on all the problems of the world. I have enough of my own battles to deal with.
    One thing raising a child is teaching me too is to pick the battles. As cliche as it sounds it is true. There are some battles that just should not be fought.

    And as for the mind reading, I can totally relate to that too. I like what themema said – “If I can’t read your mind….. why do I think you can read mine?” I think I might have to have that tattooed on the back of my hand as a reminder.

    What a great community you have here Tori. That can share so openly and not be judged. Thank you.

  18. MostlySunny

    Wow! You guys are good! I appreciate you just “sayin’ it” like it is. Isn’t it amazing how we look at other people and think they’ve got it all together and we’re the only ones with problems? Just not true. We’re all navigating through this life trying to make it with all the baggage we’ve collected along the way. Then, we come to the foot of the cross and realize we can just leave it there (or release it and let it roll down the hill [Pilgrim’s Progress]). But there’s still that “residual” affect on us and our actions, reactions and emotions. The good thing is, after the cross, we’ve got the Holy Spirit on this journey until we make it home.

    I’m humbled that God has brought us this far…and we get to “meet” here.

  19. tori

    I love reading these, there is so much insight and wisdom here! Pain, too– but that’s ‘the cost of living’, isn’t it?

    jonny, delightedabroad and swerchon– Russ grew up in a very abusive alcoholic home. His dad was a Pentecostal minister and binge drinker, who would sometimes go years between binges. Russ is one of five boys, and four of them have battled addiction. The emotional scars from the abuse he suffered both physical and mental, have tormented him all of his adult life. 12 step programs have been lifesavers around here in terms of both of us understanding what happened to him, as well as good therapy. A couple of years ago Russ was diagnosed with having trauma symptoms, and dealing with that has opened the door to some truly miraculous changes inside of him. God used that diagnosis to bring people into his life that helped him finally unlock the door to the deepest part of the pain and let it go. He will always be living with the results of what he grew up with, but there has been such healing and restoration in him– God has been so faithful!

    Keep talking!

  20. delightedabroad

    That’s the point, Tori: what we grow up with is definitely a part of our personal history but with God working on it it turns from a burden to a deep understanding of and help for others. At least that’s a way for me to deal with it and not becoming desperate.

  21. jonny

    I think it’s harder to un, or re-laern something than it is to learn something anew. I’ve also been thinking a few weeks now that it is not our ignorance that gets in the way of our relationship to Christ, not the things we do not know, but more the things we think we do know. Does THAT make any sense!?! : / The number one thing from the Bible that seems to help me a lot is the be anxious for nothing/worry about nothing, never lean on one’s own understanding of things, never trust ones own understanding, as a result, never judge. And, at the end of the day, trust Christ with and in ALL things. Even the thngs we are discussing. He knows exactly what we are capable of, knows what He allowed when forming us, knew exactly what sort of situation we would be born into, and says, “It’s OK, I got it covered.”

    Some things from my devotional and Bible readings today that may fit in this concersation:

    “He owns the harvest that is produced by distress and conviction of sin, and this is the harvest we have to pray that labourers may be thrust out to reap.” Oswald

    At that time:
    So many people were crowding together
    that they were trampling one another underfoot.
    Jesus began to speak, first to his disciples,
    “Beware of the leaven–that is, the hypocrisy–of the Pharisees.

    “There is nothing concealed that will not be revealed,
    nor secret that will not be known.
    Therefore whatever you have said in the darkness
    will be heard in the light,
    and what you have whispered behind closed doors
    will be proclaimed on the housetops.
    I tell you, my friends,
    do not be afraid of those who kill the body
    but after that can do no more.
    I shall show you whom to fear.
    Be afraid of the one who after killing
    has the power to cast into Gehenna;
    yes, I tell you, be afraid of that one.
    Are not five sparrows sold for two small coins?
    Yet not one of them has escaped the notice of God.
    Even the hairs of your head have all been counted.
    Do not be afraid.
    You are worth more than many sparrows.” Gospel Lk 12:1-7

    Responsorial Psalm
    Ps 32:1b-2, 5, 11

    R. (see 7) ‘I turn to you, Lord, in time of trouble, and you fill me with the joy of salvation.’
    Blessed is he whose fault is taken away,
    whose sin is covered.
    Blessed the man to whom the LORD imputes not guilt,
    in whose spirit there is no guile.
    R. ‘I turn to you, Lord, in time of trouble, and you fill me with the joy of salvation.’
    Then I acknowledged my sin to you,
    my guilt I covered not.
    I said, “I confess my faults to the LORD,”
    and you took away the guilt of my sin.
    R. ‘I turn to you, Lord, in time of trouble, and you fill me with the joy of salvation.’
    Be glad in the LORD and rejoice, you just;
    exult, all you upright of heart.
    R. ‘I turn to you, Lord, in time of trouble, and you fill me with the joy of salvation.’


    Well, that was truly good for my soul, jonny! I enjoyed that!
    I have a devotional book that I read from along w/ designated scripture corresponding w/ it – daily. Can I ask what, if any, devotional aide/material you use? This has been one deep, deep emotinal blog site for the past two days, I have learned alot, and have learned that I have ALOT MORE TO LEARN!

  23. swerchon

    Tori, God is truly faithful !!!! I can so relate to what Russ went through in his childhood. The physical abuse has plagued me as well and I have battled with addiction as well but NOT drugs or alcohol but; SUGAR and CHOCOLATE. Later to find out that being addicted to SUGAR is a precursor to alcoholism so I stopped that immediately. I never had a desire to drink because I saw what it does to the person and everyone around them.

    Thank God Russ has had the outlet to release his pain. I love your song LONG HARD ROAD – I especially like the talking that Russ does at the end – I feel his pain…

  24. rockin robyn

    “We Are Broken To Become More Beautiful” I get a lot of healing and counseling from music. Just like paying attention when wise people speak, I also, actually listen to the words to songs.

    Everything that we struggle with in life – in later years I’ve grown to learn – is purposeful and is a learning experience, not only to ourselves but serves as an example to others… Can you imagine a world where we never saw the problems or struggles of others – that in fact “I” am the only one going through this, “I’m alone”. What a lonely, dark world that would be. But we are all designed to not have perfect lives… struggles and tribulations are apart of our “being” here in this test tube. When we no longer feel hurt and pain and we’re “free”?, than hallelujah we are HOME!

    But until then just knowing that we all have diamonds in our souls and once freed, that’s what makes us valuable to serve as examples to someone else with the same kind of anchors that take us under or just knock us down a bit.

    I am so fortunate (and ignorant) to have not known some of the struggles mentioned here with Al-Anon… hell I didn’t even know who Al-Anon was until I googled it… 12 steps — I kind of figured it out but didn’t know who Al was. I always heard of “it” as AA. I was blessed to not have that pain/illness in or around my life or my immediate family. I now have seen friends struggle with it but I was always scared of alcohol, truly felt and believed it to be the devils water. I thank God for that gift of knowledge.

    The song was written by Allen Shamblin and Sonja Isaacs, but no one can sing it better than Sheri Easter… “We Are Broken” Every word-every sentence in that song teaches me and gets me through a tough day.

  25. jonny

    That’s odd. The last Say it! I posted didn’t take right away, and there was a heading on it stating “Your comment is awaiting moderation.” That was a new one = /

  26. jonny

    ‘I started My Utmost For His Highest beginning of the year.’

    ‘haven’t gotten to them yet.’

  27. tori

    jonny– “My Utmost For His Highest” is one of Russ’ all-time favorite books in the world! So full of wisdom. (I have no idea what the “comment awaiting moderation” glitch was– I don’t moderate comments!)

    Rockin’ robyn– Al-Anon isn’t the same as AA, they are actually two different programs, though related. AA is a support group for the addict or alcoholic who has a desire to stop using. Al-Anon is a support group for the families or friends of alcoholics or addicts–anyone whose life has been affected by someone else’s addiction. It’s a very wide-ranging program. Over the years I have met people there who grew up with alcoholism in their home or were married to someone with addiction issues, but I have also met people there who had an alcoholic friend or roommate in college, or worked for an alcoholic boss. Even when they weren’t in contact with the alcoholic anymore, many have continued to go to the program because the 12 steps are just such a great guide for living your life! The name IS kinda confusing though, isn’t it?!

  28. delightedabroad

    Yes, had to google it too. What a great work; and I appreciated to read about Alateen. On this side of the ocean alcohol has become a serious issue for kids/teens. Especially this thing called binge drinking.
    swerchon, I also have to struggle with some kind of addiction, also not drugs/alcohol but I have to pay attention(with God’s help)to eating regularly. Have once been about to become anorexic.

  29. bettyrwoodward

    Not quite on the subject but I have learnt a lot this week. Please could I ask you all to pray for a young lady called Jo. We were on holiday and had met on a jeep safari in Turkey. We soon found we were all Christians and began talking. We reached a beautiful beach and Jo and I ran straight into the water so warm and lovely, soon our husbands joined us. Stuart and I stayed near the shore whereas Jo and her husband (aged 25) swam out further. They got into trouble with an undercurrent and called for help. Jo was rescued by a boat but her husband was not found. We stayed with Jo through visits by paramedics, police and the pro consol in the area. We took her back to our hotel and stayed with her until her brother arrived from the UK. She will be flying back to the UK tonight with her husband still missing. The last time she heard him he was praying and she was sure then that she was going to lose him. Just to hear her praying on the beach and talking to her has been a real privilege. This was the last thing I would have wanted to happen but it was a real God moment that we were there when it did. At one time yesterday we were sitting together in our hotel room with Jo singing ‘Because He lives I can face tomorrow’ with tears running down all our faces.
    I kept thinking about Rachel, that this could be my daughter. I even had to phone her at one time just to hear her voice. When we said goodbye Jo said that we were her Turkish parents. I am sure we will always stay in contact now and maybe sometime she will meet my daughter.
    Thank you God for letting us be there so Jo was not alone in a foreign country at this sad, sad time and give us all the strength to get through it.

  30. auburn60

    Thanking God that He put you there,also. Wow–what an experience. Of course we will pray for Jo.

  31. bettyrwoodward

    Thanks Auburn.

  32. MostlySunny

    Oh my gosh, betty! Yes, definitely a God moment. We never know when God will use us or how. So glad you were there. Jo will be forever grateful, even as she enters this valley of grief. Thanks for letting us know and for the privilege to hold her up in prayer. And for you and Stuart. Just remember, nothing in God’s kingdom is wasted. He will use this somehow!

    Loving you through this (with tears in my eyes).

  33. LindaB

    Oh my word, Betty! That is incredible! Such a tragedy is infathomable! I admire you for being there for Jo! Christians are never “off duty”, are we?

    Of course, I will also pray for Jo!

  34. jonny

    Will do, and have done sister Betty!! This seems to have been my day of prayer relating to lost family members. Please let Jo know the Bloomr readers got her back!!


  35. jonny

    I should have put, “tragically lost family members.” = /

  36. LOpitz

    okay, kinda dumb but I got a blog award and am passing it on to you!! If you wanna see, you can check my newest post!! Love you and miss you!!! See you at Thanksgiving!!! Also- we are having Perri’s bday party over Thanksgiving, did you talk to mom about this?? We were wondering what day you do Thanksgiving w/ the Smedleys? We are thinking of doing her party either Friday or Saturday that week!!

  37. themema

    Sugar and Chocolate will play with a lot of our minds~~ and bodies. In fact, we would be much healthier if we avoided ALL refined carbs. When I was a child… now this will date me…. there was little refined carbs available in food. There was sugar rationing because of WWII, and a coke was a special treat on Saturday nite, and limited to 4 ounces. We were healthier. There were many fewer incidences of anger management problems, ADHD, and mental illnesses. We have eaten outselves into most of our problems, either by eating too much, or eating the wrong foods. I know that when I stop the consumption of sugar and other refined carbs, my joints hurt a lot less and my brain is not as fuzzy. Some of you might want to try cutting out refined foods completely for a couple of weeks, and see if it makes a difference in how you feel. There is a lot of truth in the statement, ~We are what we eat~.

    For those who have mentioned Russ and his music, there is no product of his more heart wrenching and yet hopeful than Right Here Right Now, and no plea more heartfelt than Make me Whole. And since Tori has disclosed some of his background and struggles, I feel I can say that I have watched a miracle of healing over the past couple of years in Russ and in Tori, for no spouse is left untouched by the relationship with an addicted partner. I am so happy to have witnessed the transformation.

    Betty, we never know when God is going to use us, if we are ready and willing. Bless that young lady, and bless you for what you did to ease her pain and be her comfort.

  38. chillybean

    What is your blog? Can you put up a link?

  39. jonny

    I’m afraid I’m going to throw out a rather trivial request in this deep thoughts thread. As I believe I’ve mentioned at least a couple times, I’m into old American radio shows from the thirties and forties. Well, I found out yesterday that a set of Lone Ranger radio show CDs I’d been hoping to get for a couple years are no longer available. There was one last web site that had them for sale and when checking yesterday to send a friend a link to pick them up for me, they were gone. They’ve been out of print awhile now, and it looks like the next possible way to try and find a set is if a book store that offers these radio show CDs has one left on their shelves somewhere. If any of you who happen frequent book stores would not mind keeping an eye out for it, it would be so greatly appreciated! Here’s what the package looks like, just in case…

    OK, back to much important deep thoughts, prayer requests, blog awards and Tori’s Thanks-Giving plans!!

  40. themema

    johnny, check ebay, and be alerted if a copy should become available.

  41. themema

    Oh, and while you are there, check for Russ’ Christmas video. It is a winner, and often shows up there. Russ has the CD available, but I don’t know any other way to get the video.

  42. jonny

    I’ve been checking ebay, but those who have copies of these things RARELY sell them once they get them in their possession. I do a check about two or three times a week for radio show items that are hard to get.

    And Russ’ Christmas CD is one of my absolute faves!! I’ve covered some of his versions of the songs, and it has inspired a really cool, musically sharp, diverse annual Christmas Jam in the Helsinki clubs. I’ll do number three this year. It will be at the number two club for the first time, the one where I had the Marvin Gaye thing. And, at the moment, watching US videos is impossible. Maybe someone can put it on DVD one day = )

  43. Barbara M. Lloyd

    This is very interesting. I particularly liked the hysterical/historical comment. Some of the sayings that have stuck withme through the years are: The one least loveable is the one who needs to be loved the most; It isn’t as important who is right or who is wrong, as it is that there is evidence of the Holy Spirit within; I love everybody, but some are just a little bit easier to love. “Greater is He Who is within me than he who is in the world” (scripture). There are more but those are what come to mind quickly.

    Betty W, my heart hurts for that dear girl. Keeping her in prayer…and also you, dear one.



  45. delightedabroad

    bettyrwoodward, did you already hear something new from/about Jo and/or her missing husband ?

  46. bettyrwoodward

    Yes. The body was found last night. We had a letter from Jo’s parents today and she seems to be coping well. I think she will be so relieved that they have found Joseph’s body so that the waiting is over and now she is sure that he is with the Lord.
    Thank you all for your prayers.

  47. delightedabroad

    Thanks for sharing! And how are YOU doing ?

  48. bettyrwoodward

    Delighted thanks for thinking of me but I’m fine (most of the time). I’m just so glad that we were there for Jo.

  49. jonny

    I was recently thinking about her husband. Interesting that this news should be here when I visit the blog again. Thanks for letting us know, Betty! I also can’t thank everyone enough for prayers concerning my family’s situation with the loss of my coursin and her two sons. I heard really nice things concerning the memorial service/funeral last weekend. Apparently Christ really made the most of, took great advantage of one of His children being there. My mom was a real lean-on, solid support for the mother/grandmother, and what she shared when speaking, sharing at the service, was extremely appropriate and appreciated by many.

  50. tori

    Oh, Betty and jonny– I have prayed for both of the circumstances you told us about over the last several days. What tragedies. It is definitely not an accident that God had His people all around those situations…

  51. jonny

    So true, Tori!!

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