Letting Go – Episode 7

In this podcast, Spencer, Mark, and Swetha discuss letting go as a path to serenity and happiness. But if we do, to whom are we letting go?

letting go of caresSpencer, Mark, and Swetha discuss letting go. We talk about how we were or weren’t able to let go of things in our life before we came to the program. Spencer identified the slogan “Let go and let God” as a tool that he could adopt early on. At first he could only use “Let go”. He kept telling himself to “Let go” when he was tempted to try to control his loved one’s drinking. Mark shared that, before he entered the program, he did a lot of “letting go” — letting go of his needs and responsibilities, really letting go of almost everything other than his attempts to control his son’s drinking. His fear for his son overwhelmed him, and all he could do was try to control. Swetha “let go” of everything that didn’t happen the way she thought it should and that she couldn’t control, ignoring and denying unwanted reality, or else accepting defeat. Mark agreed that he was also letting go of reality, because he couldn’t face it.

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Expectations – Episode 6

We talk about expectations, how they can lead to resentment and disappointment, how we recognize them, and let go of them.


In this episode of The Recovery Show, Swetha, Kelli, and Spencer discuss expectations. Swetha wonders about the distinction between boundaries, expectations, and rules. She suggests that her boundaries are what she needs, her expectations are what she wants, and rules are an agreement about how people in a relationship will behave. Spencer notes that his expectations are frequently unexpressed – he expects others to read his mind, and to just somehow know what he expects them to do. Usually, people don't meet his unstated expectations, leading to resentment. Kelli feels that boundaries are about things “in her hula hoop”, and expectations are “outside her hula hoop”. Kelli relates the question to the Al-Anon Steps, Traditions and Concepts.

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learn to surf – a meditation



You can’t stop the waves, but you can learn to surf.

Jon Kabat-Zinn

This reminds me that when I accept reality, I will find new choices. When I do not accept what I cannot change, I waste time and energy fighting it. When I recognize it for truth, then I am freed to accomplish something better.

A meditation for January 13, 2013.

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only love – a meditation


only love can heal such a scar

Only love, only love can leave such a mark
But only love, only love can heal such a scar

Only love, only love can leave such a mark
But only love, only love unites our hearts

U2 — Magnificent

We come to Al-Anon when the drinking or drugging of someone we love has made our lives unmanageable. If we did not love them, it would not be so hard, it would not leave such a mark on our lives. Over time, loving an alcoholic can scar our souls, and can affect our lives and our manner of living long after that loved one is gone from our day to day life. In the program, we find a different kind of love. I found the love of my fellow Al-Anon members, who shared their innermost secrets, so that I might heal. I found the unconditional love of a Higher Power, and I know that the God of my understanding loves me just as I am, and wants only the best for me. This new love has been healing the scar in my soul, and my life is all the better for it.

A meditation for January 12, 2013.

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closer – a meditation

closer to perfection



I may not be there yet, but I’m closer than I was yesterday.



I am a perfectionist. I want everything I do to be done perfectly. This is not a realistic attitude, it leads to disappointment, and sometimes even prevents me from starting on something because I can't do it perfectly.

I have learned a new way of living. The slogan “Progress, not perfection” reminds me that I will never be perfect, but that I can make progress and improve myself and my life. There are times when it seems that my life is still a wreck. If I take a moment and look back, I can see that, while it is still not everything I'd like it to be, my life is much better than it was in the past. I am not out of debt, but my debt is smaller, and I have a plan to make it smaller still. My belly is still rounder than I want it to be, but it's smaller than it was. I still sometimes react angrily to someone's actions, but not nearly as often as I did a few years ago.

I may not be “there” yet, but I am closer than I was yesterday. For this, I can be grateful.

A meditation for January 11, 2013.

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