Monday, August 31, 2009


I will always play with you. We're best friends forever. *

God's love. Mother's love.

I've got my eye on YOU.......!

God's tender love. God's healing touch.

Please, let's not squabble anymore!


Prayer Girl
I have to thank Mr. Steve for pointing out to me that today is not actually Wednesday. :) - I had to change the title to reflect this.

(Photo credits: * Diaper Duet by Anita Hogue, ** Eye See You by Sunset FL, ***Afternoon Squabble by Florida Fan)

Sunday, August 30, 2009




("Alcoholics Anonymous", p. 84 - 5th 9th step promise)

I hate to admit it, but I felt sorry for myself a large part of my life - that is until I found Alcoholics Anonymous. I was not aware of this fact, but my trip through the 12 steps revealed it to me. I played the victim, the martyr, the "oh poor me" role. I was filled with self-pity. Not a pretty sight when I was finally able to see it. But being aware is the first step in change. Then I accepted this was true and took action to change it by continuing to work the steps.

My self-esteem was in the very negative range by the time I found sobriety. I felt useless, of no value to myself or anyone else. The 4th and 5th steps uncovered these horrible feelings about myself. Thank God the rest of the steps were there for it was by taking all 12 steps that I was able to turn things around, asking God to remove my shortcomings, making amends, and establishing continuous contact with God.

Today, the only time I feel useless or harbor self-pity is when I find myself in "stinking thinking". It is my thoughts that take me to those places. I try never to stay there for long anymore. I have learned I have a choice. I can choose to pray, reach out to help another alcoholic, get to a meeting, call my sponsor, call another recovering person. These are ways I can adjust my attitude.

God uses me as I work the 12th step. When I keep gratitude in my heart, I cannot be in self-pity. I have been given much and for that I am grateful.

Love and prayers,
Prayer Girl

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Sunday 8/30/09 - "LOVE IS..."


"LOVE IS..."

Love is.....

catching the one you've been after long enough to place a kiss.

opening your life and making enough room for brand new members of Alcoholics Anonymous, of Al-Anon who are looking for help, looking for truth, looking for some hope, searching for health, searching for God (whether they know it or not).

sharing your life with the vulnerable of this world - babies, the young, the elderly, animals, the injured, the ill, the disabled, those who are hurting.

demonstrating love through loving actions.

spending time with those you love.

taking the time to pray for those in need of prayer. Taking the time to place their names in the book that will be taken to the altar during mass.

getting on your knees and asking for God's guidance each day, asking God's protection for those you love, and bringing people by name into God's presence in prayer.

caring about people you have come to know through the writing of blogs though you've never met them face to face.

being willing to do God's will.

'letting go' of someone when it is in the interest of their spiritual growth.

detaching (with love) when necessary.

being appreciative of and using all of God's gifts and graces.

God's gift of the 12 steps.

Prayer Girl

(Photo credit: Women by Wendy Goeckner)

Friday, August 28, 2009




Hubby on his scooter.
The route - Rocky Mount, N. C.
to Charlottesville, Va.
The weather map - dark, dark green all the way.

Tropical storm Danny?

On a scooter?

On my knees in prayer.

Dear God - praying for a "safe ride".
Praying he'll ride between the raindrops.

Seven hours later.

Report from the scooter rider.
Most beautiful ride - scooting between the raindrops.

Thank God for answered prayer.

Prayer Girl
(No kidding!)

( * Photo credit: Raindrops by Tekkaus)

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Friday 8/28/09 - "PERFECT FRIED CHICKEN"



I remember: aroma of flour-dipped chicken sizzling, popping in a cast iron skillet, tasty tiny pieces of crisp coating snitched from the platter, biting into that delicate crispness giving way to juicy tenderness.

Mom is gone, the recipe that was written in her mind gone with her. I'm still searching for that "perfect fried chicken".

Prayer Girl

Flash Fiction Friday 55

is a story written in exactly 55 words.

Let the G-Man know if you write one
and read the ones of your fellow writers.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Thursday 8/27/09 - "OUR EXPERIENCE BENEFITS"


("Alcoholics Anonymous", p. 84 - 4th 9th step promise)

The elevator down to hell that I was on during my descent into alcoholism had many exit floors. When I finally exited, I had gone down the scale further than some and not as far as others.

Weight-wise I looked like a concentration camp victim when I got sober.

I was unable to hold a job. One day, I simply stopped going to work. I didn't bother to explain why, but in my mind I probably just thought of it as a "nervous breakdown" (if I thought anything). It was my alcoholism.

I was unable to function as a wife or mother. I was unable to care for my youngest child who was often taken to a neighbor's home when I would pass out.

My mind resembled scrambled eggs.

I was emotionally and spiritually near dead.

There was plenty to be ashamed of, to feel guilt about. However, as I worked the steps and the promises came true, God was able to transform the shame and guilt into something of value and worth by using those same experiences to help others recover.

Over the years of sobriety, I have had countless opportunities to share these experiences with others who have either reached that same miserable place themselves or are heading there. Today, I can share the hope and strength I found in Alcoholics Anonymous.

The miracle of one alcoholic being able to talk with another alcoholic when no one else can, the miracle of discovering there are people who "speak the same language", and that ability to identify, are all ways in which I find my experiences can help others.

As I share with another alcoholic, I experience the joy of step 12. Spiritual experiences are often the result of working with another alcoholic and practicing these principles in all my affairs.

Loving the promises,
Prayer Girl

(Photo credit: Flutter by Jessica Jenney)

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Wednesday 8/26/09 - "HAPPINESS ALIGHTS"


"Happiness is as a butterfly which,
when pursued,
is always beyond our grasp,
but which if you will sit down quietly,

may alight upon you."

Nathaniel Hawthorne

This describes the way God speaks to me, influences my life at times. I must always be taking positive and constructive actions, but I also need to remember that no matter how hard I pursue something I need also sit quietly until, if it is God's will, what I pursue comes to me.
("God could and would if He were sought" - NOT 'caught'.)

I took the action of the 12 steps - "THE" result being I had a "SPIRITUAL AWAKENING", but that awakening, that connection with God was God's action. I do the work, God produces the results.

"In silence He listens to us; in silence He speaks to our souls. In silence we are granted the privilege of listening to His voice.
Silence of our eyes.

Silence of our ears.
Silence of our mouths. the silence of the heart
God will speak."

---Mother Teresa, from "No Greater Love"

In the silence, the butterfly alights.

Stunning blues and splashing yellows bright
Red flash and glint of black catching light

On gently blowing breezes kaleidoscope arrives
Flutters in, alights upon me, so brilliantly alive

In the hush of shaded day I sit in silence and in peace

Its endless darting here and there suddenly has ceased

Into my quiet self it slips - an overwhelming urge

To let this precious gift from God within my spirit merge

Prayer Girl

P.S. The inside commotion has passed. All is well.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Monday, 8/24/09 - "LOCOMOTION COMMOTION"


There is too much commotion in my inner self.
That is, in my mind, emotions, body, spirit.
I can't blog.
I didn't sleep.
It will slow down and pass.

There have been no "train wrecks" and I don't anticipate any.
But the train is creating quite a commotion.

When the train comes to rest, things settle down, and peace and serenity return, then I'll blog.

In the meantime, I trust my blogger friends will wait. Thank you for that.

Love and prayers from the land of motion,
Prayer Girl

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Sunday 8/23/09 - "BITS OF BLUE"

Baby Blues *

Blue moon - I love blue cheese

Blue - spirituality, mysticism

Am I a little Blue? In a Blue mood?

Alone in the mysterious "blueness"

Blue is Beautiful - all it's Brilliant shades and hues

Prayer Girl

(*Photo credit: Baby Blue Eyes Portrait Painting by William Everly,

Friday, August 21, 2009

Saturday 8/22/09 - "SIX WORD SATURDAY"






Prayer Girl

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Friday 8/21/09 - "THE LAST DRUNK"



Sober three months that July 4th, she could repeat, but didn't understand "don't be in slippery places with slippery people".

She on the dark island with drinkers, fireworks ended, boat broken, sitting alone on a cooler of beer.

A mental blank place, she stood, turned, opened the cooler, drank the first of her last drunk.

Prayer Girl

Flash Fiction Friday 55
is a story written in exactly 55 words.
Let the G-Man know if you write one
and read the ones of your fellow writers.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Thursday 8/20/09 "SERENITY AND PEACE"


("Alcoholics Anonymous", pp. 83 & 84 - 3rd 9th step promise)

The words "serenity" and "peace" as they applied to me personally were extremely elusive till I was over 40 years old and had been in Alcoholics Anonymous over a year.

Prior to sobriety, did I comprehend the world serenity? No! no way! I believed there was serenity happening when no calamity was rocking my emotionally sensitive world and when things were going my way. I think I thought I was experiencing serenity each time I "fell in love" - that rush of good feeling.

Did I know peace? I understood about "peace to the world", but of "peace within" I had very little understanding. I was usually on an emotional roller coaster - elated and flying high with a new love or a momentary success at work or devastated, depressed, and having thoughts of suicide.

The years I have spent working the 12 steps has illuminated for me what serenity means. Serenity for me is having the ability to stay calm even when all around me is chaos. Serenity is being able to maintain a tranquil composure when others are angry, upset, disturbed. As the "Serenity Prayer" says, if I can accept the things I cannot change, I probably have some serenity.

I have peace within myself today. I accept myself as I am. If there is something that needs changing, I ask for the willingness and ask God to remove it. Then I do my part. I recognize my talents and gifts and give thanks to God for them. In relationships with others, I have freedom from quarreling and disagreement with others. I can state my position, hear another out, then leave it be. There are more harmonious relationships.

Serenity and peace are a direct product of faith and trust in God. It is a product of keeping my life turned over to God. The more I stay in step three and in the present, the more of these qualities I have.

Do I have serenity and peace at all times? Of course not. I am not a saint, but I do my best to grow along spiritual lines. The longer I focus on strengthening my relationship with God, the more serenity and peace I experience.

I wish all you bloggers peace and serenity,
Prayer Girl

(Photo credit: Jen D. Rodriguez)

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Wednesday 8/19/09 - "WE WILL NOT REGRET"


(Alcoholics Anonymous, p. 83 - the 2nd 9th step promise)

When I first got sober it took a while to move my mind out of the past. I hashed over and over in my head the sadness, tears, confusion, mental and emotional pain, and failures I thought defined my life in its entirety. As the months and years passed, I was able to move out of the past and into the present that was improving slowly,
but surely.

I had many regrets that my life had turned out as it did. As I worked the steps, I looked deeply into myself and discovered that my problems weren't totally of everybody else's making as I had been so sure was the case. I became able to see that in very large part I created my own problems. Not knowing how to live life on life's terms, I turned to behaviors, ways of thinking, and coping skills that may have served me at some point, but eventually failed me entirely and resulted in my turning to alcohol as the final solution to my problems. This led to near disaster.

By the time I worked the 12th Step I had found a new relationship with God. I felt God forgave me, I made amends to those people I had harmed, and I began to forgive myself. I had accepted my life. This acceptance has grown over the years.

Today, I know that God has been in my life always. I know that every experience I have had - good and bad - God has used to help me grow or to help someone else. I no longer regret.

Prayer Girl

Tuesday 8/18/09 - "NEW FREEDOM & HAPPINESS"


(Alcoholics Anonymous, p. 83)

I have found that new freedom and new happiness that is promised in the 9th step. I don't know exactly when any of the promises began coming true for me, but I know that they did.

My freedom and happiness have been growing, changing, and transforming me for many years. The more I am free in my mind, body, and spirit - the happier I am. The more I practice being satisfied and happy, the freer I am.

Sounds to me like I think they are directly proportional to each other. I have never thought about this till just this moment, but freedom and happiness seem linked in the same promise for a reason. As one is manifested in a life, the other is as well.

Some freedom came my way very early in sobriety when I realized I had been freed from the bondage to alcohol. When I finally crashed to the bottom, surrendered, and asked God to help me - which He did - including the lifting of my obsession to drink, I found I was no longer a slave to alcohol. That is real freedom. Was I happy? Maybe at that time happy would have been too foreign an emotion for me to feel, but I certainly felt tremendous relief and a sense of hope. I had not felt either of those emotions for a long time.

As the years have passed, my experience of freedom and happiness has grown exponentially. I found the freedom to live life on life's terms, the freedom to take actions and make choices that are in the best interest of my sobriety. I have grown to love myself and have so much of that love that there is plenty to give away, to use to help others. I am free from guilt and shame, my constant companion for so much of my life prior to finding Alcoholics Anonymous. What joy that brings.

My desire for freedom and happiness has grown as well. Today I believe I am of value, I am worth all the good things that come my way. I believe that God does want me to be "happy, joyous, and free". I am free to become the person God intended me to be. I am free to do God's will. The more I do God's will, the happier I am.

Today, right now, I plan to go out into this day with the knowledge of my God-given freedom and happiness and spread it around as much as possible.

Here, blogger friends, have some freedom and happiness,
Prayer Girl

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Monday 8/17/09 - "MUCH GRATITUDE"


I have so much to be grateful for:

My daughter is visiting her cousin in Virginia, by the shore. This morning she told me they were going to the "Outer Banks". Later, I was reminiscing with friends about different places on the Eastern shore they love and I remember visiting. I can still smell, feel, and hear the sound of the Ocean. I am so grateful for the memories of the beach from my childhood and youth. They are among the sweetest and powerful memories I have.

I am grateful to have had the opportunity to do the 8th step with a sponsee in Al-Anon this afternoon. It is a miracle to watch the transformation in another person. It is such a gift to be allowed to "pass it on".

I am grateful that I had the opportunity to place my hands on hubby's hurting leg and bring some relief. I am also grateful that when an accident happened today and his head was hit very hard, I was able to again place my hands on his forehead and bring healing. Thank you God.

I am grateful to have spoken to my wonderful daughter-in-law and to hear from her own lips that she is healing from her accident when someone in a vehicle hit her on her bicycle. She is on the mend and able to start back to her teaching job tomorrow. Grateful to have also spoken with my son. I love hearing his voice.

I am grateful to have been able to spend some time with my hubby, just him and me, having a coffee together. I love any alone time I have with him. I cherish those moments.

I am grateful for God's loving and caring guidance in my life and in the lives of those I love.

I am grateful that I know to ask God to go with me tomorrow morning when I return to my volunteer position as a pastoral care assistant at the hospital. I am grateful that I know He will answer that prayer. I have been off for the summer and return to the regular Monday schedule tomorrow.

I am grateful for each night's sleep and the joy each day brings.

I am grateful for all you bloggers,

Photo by Prayer Girl

Sunday 8/16/09 - "SUNSHINE"



Prayer Girl

Friday, August 14, 2009

Saturday 8/15/09 - "THOUGHTS WITH LOTS OF LIGHT"


Some thoughts just "light up" my mind. I heard some at a meeting today and others I have heard or read in the past, but love them now all over again. I'm sure some of these you may have also heard before.

Being "busy" and "clutter" distracts us from needed change.

I'm turning this one over in my mind. I admit to being a "pack rat" and that can create clutter. I have at least stopped buying, stopped adding to my possessions. I have made the smallest headway in getting rid of things, but I have a very long way to go. As far as busy goes, on a scale of 1 to 10 I would say I'm about an 8 at staying busy. Sometimes I think if I slowed down a bit, lowered that number, I would have more time for those "intuitive thoughts".

There's two kinds of business:
One - my business
Two - none of my business

Many meetings - many choices
Few meetings - fewer choices

Meetings open my mind to more possibilities. When I am faced with a difficult or fearful situation, God often speaks to me through other Alcoholics Anonymous and Al-Anon members. I discover more possible resolutions than I had originally seen. This is one of the reasons I tend to increase the number of meetings I attend when difficulties arise.

Thoughts in mind duplicate in kind.

This reminds me of my blog the other day about the Magic Magnifying Mind - what we focus on is magnified. When I focus on the positive, the positive increases. When I focus on the negative, the negative increases.

"God proves straightaway what He really wants by the results. The most important thing is to pray and pray, to see which (path) will produce the greatest good." - Mother Teresa

When I first read this quote my thought was, THIS IS ABSOLUTELY TRUE. In the current situation with my loving daughter, I did pray and pray. My husband and I prayed and prayed. I know many, many people were praying and praying. (We are all still praying.) From the moment we went to talk to her until now, I feel the hand of God firmly on her and all of us. God has shown His guidance, His will, result-by-result. Every choice, decision, and opportunity has felt so "from God" in my spirit. So grateful.......

"Why do I allow myself to suffer? Is there any meaning or validity to the items I am permitting myself to suffer from? ..... Even if it was meant to hurt, it cannot reach the real me, if I stand guard at the door of my mind."
(From "One Day At A Time In Al-Anon", August 13, p. 226)

What I love most about this quote is the idea of standing guard at the door of my mind. This brings to mind another often heard phrase - "restraint of tongue and pen". Words are powerful, those we speak and those we hear. In my opinion, for me, I believe it is better for me to think before I speak. And if someone says something that is hurtful, I have the choice to guard that door to my mind and not allow that harmful thought to lodge in there.

Let's all think thoughts filled with lots of light today.

Prayer Girl

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Friday 8/14/09 - "MARY LOU'S SWEET SHOPPE"



That hot summer afternoon, my best friend and I rode our bicycles down the long tree-canopied road to Mary Lou's Sweet Shoppe.

Inside the coolness welcomed and refreshed us.

The soda fountain counter with swivel stools ran the length of the right wall.

We sipped the heavenly, fizzy, vanilla sodas wishing summer would never end.

Prayer Girl
(My 55 is a memory from my teen years.)

Flash Fiction Friday 55
is a story written in exactly 55 words.
Let the G-Man know if you write one
and read the ones of your fellow writers.

(Photo credit: Soda Jerk by Norman Rockwell)

Wednesday, August 12, 2009



Alcoholics tend to hate change. They also hate being in a rut. What the ----! No wonder we have a tendency to be restless, irritable, and discontented. This makes for being a little nutty, doesn't it? No wonder we need the 2nd step, "Came to believe that a power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity."

Being a recovering alcoholic means I must always be changing. If I am not moving forward, I will be falling backward. Standing still is an illusion. I heard this when I first got sober and I still believe it today.

Walking through change usually means walking through pain. Even though I know change is for my good and leads to spiritual growth, I still resist it. In that resistance, I experience the pain.

Sometimes I initiate change, but more often, it is God who pushes me in the direction of something different. He often does this by closing a door. A change happens on the job, a job is lost, a marriage breaks up, a child gets in trouble, a health problem arises, a loving, mutually-satisfying, balanced relationship slowly disintegrates, the ability to follow a profession is ended. These are just a few examples of doors closing.

I have learned over time that when one door closes, another one always opens. However, it can be a long time (in my estimation) for that door to open. Sometimes I hunt for wiggle-room trying to force the closing door back open. This never turns out well. It is trying to force "my will", not allowing "God's will". In the interim I spend time in the hallway.

I have also learned over the years that when the next door opens, it is always into something that is even better than where I was before. The best things that have happened to me, I have rarely had anything to do with.

I hate being in the hallway, but given that in my experience it "always" leads to something even better, it just once again proves to me that I don't know what is best for me. God does.

For all of us who may be standing in the hallways of our lives, I pray God gives us the faith to persevere, to stand patient in prayer till the next door opens. May we wait in hope for God's perfect timing to bring the next best thing into our lives.

Prayer Girl

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Wednesday 8/12/09 - "POWER TO SET MYSELF FREE"


"Freedom from despair and frustration can come only from changing, in myself, the attitudes that are maintaining the conditions that cause me grief.

I have the power to set myself free by conquering the personal shortcomings that chain me to my problems. And not the least of these is the short-sightedness that has made me refuse to accept responsibility for the way I am."
(From "One Day At A Time In Al-Anon", August 11, p. 224)

How amazing it is to discover that it is not the other person - how they act, what they say, or what they think about me that sets me free. The power to do this lies within myself. What a marvelous discovery. I learned that I am responsible. I am responsible for my life - how I react to things, my attitudes, and my behaviors.

These are some of the ways I am free today:

I am free to feel. I no longer censor or deny my feelings. Today I can cry, laugh, be angry, acknowledge any feelings I may have. I no longer judge them. They are what they are.

I am free to choose who I wish to have relationships with and those I prefer to keep at a distance. I can set boundaries. I can protect myself from people who are not healthy to be around. I can surround myself with people who are on the same path to recovery that I am on.

I am free to say "no". I am free to say "no" without having to explain myself. I am free to decide what is best for me and if something is not in my best interest, I can decline. I can say "no" just because.

I am free to hold on to negative feelings and thoughts OR let them go.

I am free to choose the God of my understanding.

I am free to disclose things about myself as I choose and free to keep private what I feel should be kept private. I am free to share these private things with my sponsor and that is what I do. It is secrets that have the power to make me sick. I am free to share them and stay healthy.

I am free to reach out to help others. I am free to be gracious and not take it as a personal affront should they reject my offer.

I am free to allow others to be who they are. I am free to allow others their life experiences.

I am free to love God, hold whatever beliefs I may have, and pray as I am led to pray.

I am free to blog. I am free to write whatever I choose to share.

Happy to be free and praying you are free too,
Prayer Girl

Monday, August 10, 2009

Tuesday 8/11/09 - "MAGIC MAGNIFYING MIND"


"It was as if I had, rather than a Midas touch which turned everything to gold, a magnifying mind that magnified whatever it focused on."
(From "Alcoholics Anonymous", p.418)

"When I focus on what's good today, I have a good day, and when I focus on what's bad, I have a bad day. If I focus on a problem, the problem increases; if I focus on the answer, the answer increases."
(From "Alcoholics Anonymous", p.419)

My mind magically magnifies whatever it focuses on.
When I found Alcoholics Anonymous and first got sober I had a difficult time focusing on anything other than all my problems. It was a "woe is me" focus. Some of the problems I faced were real. I returned from treatment to a home where my husband was drinking alcoholically. Before I went away for those 28 days, all I could think about was his drinking, everything he said and everything he did. My vision was almost 100% on him. I thought he was my problem. He was magically magnified by my mind into THE ENTIRE PROBLEM. He was certainly a part of the problem, but focusing on him did not help me. The more time I spent worrying about this, the worse I got. I kept getting drunk.

I discovered what my problem really was. My problem was my alcoholism. When I returned from treatment I was focused on the solution, on my recovery from alcoholism. I kept my mind on what I needed to do to stay away from a drink, to not be overwhelmed by my emotions. I planned each and every day around what I needed to do to become healthier. I had learned that alcoholism is a disease and I was a sick person, not a bad person.

I went to a meeting everyday until I was nearly three months sober. At that point I got a job so meetings were frequent, but not every day. I stayed close to my sponsor. I prayed. I minded my own business of recovery more and my husband's business less. I did the best I could to become more of a mother than I had been when I was drinking.

As I continued directing my attention to my recovery, I began to recover. I went to meetings. I listened in meetings. I worked the 12 steps. I prayed for help. I very slowly began to make some friends in AA. In my case, I needed additional help and had regular counseling for several years.
Within only a couple of weeks of leaving the treatment program, I had suicidal thinking. Rather than having to leave my family again and be locked up in the crisis unit, I increased my counseling sessions and began taking an anti-depressant. I continued taking this medication for several years until I was stable enough to be weaned off of them. That was about 21 years ago. I have not experienced that kind of suicidal thinking since then. Thank God.

Today, I find that it is true - when I focus on what is good about my day, I have a good day. If I shift back to the "woe is me" mentality, my day is not so good. I have often heard people say that AA stands for "attitude adjustment". For me, when I attend an AA meeting, it always reinforces my positive thinking and if I am in a negative state, an AA meeting has a way of "adjusting my attitude", shifting my perspective to the positive.

I prefer feeling good. If I feel bad, I can take action to switch my magic magnifying mind onto the positive in my life. When I do this, life is good again.

I pray also that your magic magnifying mind will focus on the positive today which is the love of God.

Prayer Girl

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Monday 8/10/09 - "JUST WANT TO SMILE & LAUGH"

"Hey, you're tickling my funny bone!"

They say bouncing is what tiggers do best, but
I think it's laughing that tiggers do best!

Laughter makes me feel so good, so alive, so full of joy!



I went to a benefit dinner Friday night. While there, one of the girls came to our table, sat down, and told the following joke:

A woman died and found herself at the pearly gates in front of St. Peter. St. Peter said to her, "Before I can let you into heaven, you need to pass a spelling test." She asked what she had to spell. St. Peter said, "Spell the word love."
She said, "L. O. V. E.". She was allowed in.

St. Peter told her he needed to see God and would be back in a short time. He asked her to watch the gate while he was gone. The next person to arrive at the pearly gates was the woman's husband. She told him there was a spelling test that had to be passed before he could enter. She told him her word had been LOVE and she spelled it correctly and was allowed in.

He said, "Fine. Give me my word and she said, "CZECHOSLOVAKIA."



Prayer Girl

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Sunday 8/9/09 "BACK TO BASICS - A,B,C"


"Remember that we deal with alcohol - cunning, baffling, powerful! Without help it is too much for us. But there is one who has all power - that One is God. May you find him now!"
(From "Alcoholics Anonymous" 'Big Book', pp. 58-59.)

Whether we have one day, one year, one decade or more of sobriety, we must never forget the basics. When I was newly sober I had no idea how to stay sober and I had to keep it simple so I followed the basic directions I was given. Even after many years of sobriety, life can throw not just curve balls, but gigantic objects at me. At those times and all the times in between, I must practice the basics. I must remember that the physical distance between me, an alcoholic, and that first drink is about as long as my arm and this distance is not apt to change. All it would take would be an unguarded, nonspiritual moment in my mind when my brain says, "Oh, F--K It!"

The spiritual distance between my mind and spirit and that first drink is the distance I must rely on to prevent taking that first drink. This distance was important then and is now. Just one drink and I'm back into the allergy with its obsession and compulsion that is too powerful to control - that will take me back to Hell.

The greater my connection to my Higher Power, to my God, the greater the distance I am from taking that first drink. Here are the basics that helped me form, strengthen, and maintain this relationship and still work today.

A - Get on my knees and ask God to help me stay away from a drink today. I also ask him to help me with any difficulties I may be having. I need the power He can provide - the power I lack. At night I thank Him for keeping me sober.

B - Reach out for help from the people in Alcoholics Anonymous. I had a sponsor that I called, got together with, and worked the program with. As hard as it was at first, I had to also reach out by phone and in meetings to other alcoholics trying to stay sober. I remember a time early in sobriety when I was a wreck in my mind. I don't remember what the issue was, but I could not deal with it alone in my own head. It was a Saturday morning and no one was at home. (No cell phones back then.) I couldn't reach my sponsor or the few friends I had. Thank God I had a list of women's phone numbers. As hard as it was, I just kept dialing numbers on the list until someone finally answered the phone. I did not know who I was talking to, but I just kept talking to her until I was sane again. It worked. That was a powerful lesson in the healing power of one alcoholic speaking to another alcoholic.

C - Go to meetings, listen, and try to identify with people rather than compare. I had to keep an open mind. This still works.

D - Another basic was the mantra I repeated in my head, "I don't drink 'NMW' - No Matter What!" I also used to hear often, "Even if your a -- is falling off, pick it up and carry it to a meeting." That is what I did.

E - I must always remember that I can not do this alone, can't stay sober alone and can't live life alone. I need other people and I need God.

I thank Alcoholics Anonymous and all the wonderful people in the program who taught me the basics and continue to keep my memory green and keep me repeating the basics.

I am grateful to you bloggers. You motivate me to think about so many aspects of my sobriety. That is such a blessing.

Prayer Girl

Friday, August 7, 2009

Saturday 8/8/09 - "A BLOGGER'S PRAYER"


Dear Bloggers,

I read many blogs daily and in them I hear truth and honesty, joy and happiness, and often despair, pain, fear, and anguish.

I am offering this "Blogger's Prayer" for the many needs I see as I read.


I'm praying for those experiencing debilitating pain. Please strengthen them, give them courage, and increase their faith that their pain will be lessened, treated effectively, healed.

I pray for those with challenging health problems. Please guide them to health.

For those living with loved ones who are using and abusing alcohol or drugs and whose homes are in chaos and conflict, I pray for moments of serenity and peace in the midst of turmoil. I pray that the loving arms of their Higher Power will hold them up when they feel they're falling down.

I pray for those who have been victims of childhood abuse and neglect. May God guide their search for wholeness in a personal world that was broken early on through no fault of their own. May God bless those whose innocence was stolen and vulnerability exploited. I pray that love and light may fill their lives as they journey to soundness of mind and spirit.

I pray for those who are victims of adult abuse. May they find the strength and courage to reach out for help and may God provide people and situations to support them. May they open their hearts and minds, and allow those who wish to help, do so.

May those who have been betrayed by people they trusted find the love of God. May that love guide them to experiences and people that will allow them to trust again.

For those who struggle to achieve and maintain sobriety, I pray they find acceptance of their powerlessness, surrender to a Higher Power, and find the willingness to follow God's will.

I pray for those who are alone, lonely, isolated, not understood, feeling alienated from life and from other people that God will lead them to other people they can identify with who will in turn lead them to the love of God.


Prayer Girl

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Friday 8/7/09 - "THE CALF"



He limped with crippling pain from a badly strained calf muscle.

She placed her hands there and heat like a hot oven poured in.

The pain began to pull back from the outer calf areas, slowly shrinking inward into a tiny ball.

Suddenly he jerked as the knot of pain jumped out of his leg.

Prayer Girl

Flash non-Fiction Friday 55
is a story written in exactly 55 words.
Let the G-Man know if you write one
and read the ones of your fellow writers.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Thursday, 8/6/09 - "THOUGHTS I LIKE"

(Joyfully reaching for the stars!)


"Character - the willingness to accept responsibility for one's own life - is the source from which self-respect springs. - Joan Didion

Today is the tomorrow I worried so much about yesterday and 'all is well'.
(Heard in a meeting today.)

Practice being satisfied.
(Said often by a long time sober woman in Alcoholics Anonymous who passed away years ago.)

May the pain of today be transformed into the joy of tomorrow.
(I wrote this on the flap of a book I gave my daughter recently.)

Things I'm grateful for:

Attending a wonderful Alcoholics Anonymous meeting with sober daughter, her boyfriend, hubby, and me this evening.

That the topic at the AA meeting was powerlessness and to hear person after person share about their powerlessness and the power they found through a spiritual connection with God.

A fantastic dinner after the meeting at Longhorn where all were happy, relaxed, and joyful that the gathering was a time of blessing and sobriety.

I am grateful for the fabulous filet mignon I ordered that was cooked to perfection and tasted heavenly.

The beauty of new life possible through the programs of Alcoholics Anonymous and Al-Anon.

That I can joyfully reach to the stars with my mind and spirit.

An all-loving God who I "know" is guiding me and those I love.

My blogging friends.

The many prayers I know are being said for me and those I love.

A good night's sleep.

Prayer Girl

Tuesday, August 4, 2009




Life is happening too quickly for me. It's throwing more curve balls all at the same time than I can comfortably cope with. When I am out of my 'comfort zone' for too long, it affects me in a less than favorable way.

There have been extremely difficult situations recently that involve more than a few of my loved ones. They have pulled my 'mother' and 'wife' strings taut - almost to the point of breaking. However, no breakage has occurred and I credit my 24 years in Alcoholics Anonymous and 5 years in Al-Anon for that.

My daughter has come face to face with a personal crisis and needed major changes in her life.
My son's wife was hit by a car while on her bicycle.
My husband blogged about his situation in the heat.

Bottom lines:
Daughter has been scooped up into the loving arms of God and I believe He is firmly guiding her.

Daughter-in-law spent hours in the ER, but was not hospitalized, has had surgery for a broken nose, just found out her knee did not sustain a tear or break and will heal without surgery.

Husband 'survived' heat exhaustion.

I am very tired. My spirits are not tired, but my body is.
I continue to turn everything over -- daughter, son, daughter-in-law, and husband.
I trust God and will never stop - never!

I have been involved with a lot of activities that are not usually on my plate. I have managed to blog at least something most days. I have been unable to do much commenting. I am trying to read as many blogs as possible. I know that you wonderful bloggers will understand.

Loving you all,
Prayer Girl

Monday, August 3, 2009

Tuesday, 8/4/09 - "SWEET MOMENTS"


I "choose" today to think about some "Sweet Moments" in my life.

I wrote a 55 a few Fridays ago titled "First Kiss" -- what a very sweet moment. I think it is pretty hard to recreate the mystery, surprise, and beauty of a first kiss. The boy on the other end of that moment became my first boyfriend. Being the 'all or none' kind of person I am, I always either had no guy or was madly and wildly love. This fellow was the latter and it lasted at least a year and a half - each day sweeter than the next - first kiss and first love!

I remember my first prom. My mother's parents lived in Illinois. My grandmother had died some years before when she was in her 80s. My grandfather finally agreed to come to Washington, D.C. with two of his unmarried daughters for a visit with our family. By then he was 90. He missed his wife so deeply. He was visiting at the time of my prom. I had a pink satin prom dress, hair all done up, and as I came down the stairs to meet my date, my grandfather began to cry. Later I learned he cried because he said I looked like my grandmother when they were young. As nostalgic and somewhat sad as this was, it was still a sweet, sweet moment in my life.

No list of sweet moments could be complete without the birth of my two beautiful children. They were precious to me from the first moment I held them in my arms, continued through some of those not so cherished times in life, and remain most treasured always.

The day I walked down the aisle to meet my Mr. Steveroni at the altar was one of the sweetest and God-given moments of my life.

That first sweet moment when God used my touch to heal a dear friend will live in my heart always.

Today, every single sober day I live is a sweetest moment of my life day after day after cherished day.

May you have a sweet moment today,
Prayer Girl

(Photo credit: Sweet Moments by Cindy Harter)

Saturday, August 1, 2009

Monday 8/3/09 - "COUNTING"


"Not everything that counts can be counted, and not everything that can be counted counts." - Albert Einstein

Not everything that counts can be counted

I cannot count the number of prayers that pass through my mind and heart in so many split seconds of my day as someone appears in my thoughts or I am told about someone's difficulties.

I cannot count the number of prayers that have been and are being said for me and my loved ones.

The capacity for love in the depths of the heart can not be captured in a measurement - cannot be counted.

The ripples in the sea of recovery cannot be counted. When a person finds recovery, that person's recovery affects many people--parents, spouses, children, friends, work associates. Sometimes that recovery attracts others to the same way of life and in turn affects parents, spouses, children, etc.

Not everything that can be counted counts

I have a habit like OCD (obsessive-compulsive disorder) of counting the number of people in a room. I almost always count the number of people in an AA meeting including large speaker meetings. I know, however, that the number doesn't count. Whether there are 50, 20, or 2 people present, an AA meeting is happening and God is "at work".

I can count the numbers of dollars I have in checking, savings, retirement accounts, wherever, but do all those dollars count if my life is filled with dissatisfaction, remorse, pain, anger, resentment? NO! Those dollars won't count at all in relieving a life lived in negativity.


Prayer Girl