Daily Reflection

“What we want for others doesn’t work unless they want it for themselves.” (Bryant McGill)

You know that old saying, about how you can lead a horse to the water, but you can’t make them drink it? Well I’m that person who’s often tried to force many horses to drink the water over and over and over again, without much success. I tried for years to get my mother to go into 12 Step recovery for her alcoholism, but she had every excuse in the book as to why she didn’t want to, yet that never stopped me from trying to convince her otherwise, which frankly exhausted and drained me incredibly, right up to the point of her tragic passing from her addiction. Sadly, that wasn’t an isolated incident in my life either. Add in the countless people I’ve dated, sponsees I’ve worked with, and friends I’ve been pals with along the way who’ve each struggled in their lives with various addictions or other unhealthy patterns, all whom I tried desperately to lead to some brighter light, yet watching them in the process repeat the same patterns again and again, leading me to beat my head against a wall because of it.

The simple reality that I’ve had to learn the hard way is that what I want for others and even see could be for their highest good, can never come to fruition if they don’t want it for themselves. In other words, they have to want to drink that water. They have to want to do the work. They just have to want it, not for anyone else, but themselves, and to get there, it often means watching them fall completely apart, becoming totally broken, and losing everything that means something to them to figure this out. Unfortunately, I’ve also learned it’s meant watching some people lose their lives to tragic deaths because they never got it, like my mother, several sponsees, and a number of friends of mine, each who picked up alcohol or drugs, or some other addiction, one more time, only to have it take their lives away permanently.

Currently, I know of a few who keep falling prey to the sickness of seeking prostitutes for what they feel is bringing them comfort and reassurance to their lives, even though it’s not. I’ve done everything I can to show them the sickness of it all and shed plenty of light onto the solution, but have watched both relapse repeatedly. I’ve finally come to acceptance that the best I can do is pray for each to one day find the willingness to actually do the work that will help them achieve the healing I know their soul wants from deep within, while in the meantime shifting my focus onto those who are seeking to do the work to get onto a much higher spiritual path in life.

The bottom line is that even if I am able to see the best in someone if they just do “this”. Unless they want to do “this”, they will continue to do “that”, until the pain becomes great enough for them to want to otherwise.

Dear God, thank you for the wisdom I’ve gained in realizing I can’t fix anyone. I know now it’s up to each and every individual on this planet to find their way to You. And sometimes that means watching them become completely broken, where they finally seek You, which in turn allows You to guide them to people just like me, who will use Your guidance to finally help them on their way to greater Light and Love.

Peace, love, light, and joy,
Andrew Arthur Dawson

Silly Joke Friday

Silly Joke #1

A guy goes to see the doctor, because he’s a little too well-endowed. In fact, it’s 25 inches long and he can’t get any women to have sex with him. Anyway, the doctor says there’s nothing he can do medically, but recommends a witch doctor that he thinks might be able to help. The witch doctor takes a look at the problem and tells him to go to a particular pond, deep in the forest, and talk to a frog that lives there. “Ask the frog to marry you and each time the frog says no, you’ll be 5 inches shorter.” Worth a try, he thinks, and off he dashes into the forest. He finds the pond and sees the frog on the other side, sitting on a log. “Frog, will you marry me?” The frog looks at him, disinterested at best, and calls back, “No.” The guy looks down and sure enough, he’s 5 inches shorter. Hey, this is great he thinks — let’s try that again. “Will you marry me?” The frog rolls his eyes, and shouts back again, “No!” Zappo! — the guy’s down to 15 inches. Well, that’s still a bit excessive, he thinks. Down another 5 would be perfect. So, he calls across again, “Frog, will you marry me?” The irritated frog yells back, “Look. How many times do I have to tell you? No! No! NO!!!”

Silly Joke #2

On the first day of college, the Dean addressed the students, pointing out some of the rules:”The female dormitory will be out-of-bounds for all male students, and the male dormitory to the female students. Anybody caught breaking this rule will be fined $20 the first time.” He continued, “Anybody caught breaking this rule the second time will be fined $60. Being caught a third time will cost you a fine of $180. Are there any questions?” At this point, a male student in the crowd inquired: “How much for a season pass?”

Silly Joke #3

Little Johnny and his family were having Sunday dinner at his Grandmother’s house. Everyone was seated around the table as the food was being served. When Little Johnny received his plate, he started eating right away.“Johnny! Please wait until we say our prayer,” said his mother. “I don’t need to,” the boy replied. “Of course, you do,” his mother insisted. “We always say a prayer before eating at our house.” “That’s at our house,” Johnny explained. “But this is Grandma’s house and she actually knows how to cook!”

Bonus Silly Joke

A 5-year old boy went to visit his grandmother one day. While playing with his toys in her bedroom while grandma was dusting furniture, he looked up and said, “Grandma, how come you don’t have a boyfriend?”Grandma replied, “Honey, my TV is my boyfriend. I can sit in my bedroom and watch it all day long. The TV evangelists keep me company and make me feel so good.The comedies make me laugh. I’m so happy with my TV as my boyfriend.” Grandma turned on the TV and the picture was horrible. She started adjusting the knobs trying to get the picture in focus. Frustrated, she started hitting on the backside of the TV hoping to fix the problem. The little boy heard the doorbell ring so he hurried to open the door. When he opened the door, there stood Grandma’s minister. The minister said, “Hello son is your grandma home?” The little boy replied, “Yeah, she’s in the bedroom bangin’ her boyfriend.”

Peace, love, light, and joy,
Andrew Arthur Dawson

Thought For The Day

Quote #1

“The greatest threat to our planet is the belief that someone else will save it.” (Robert Swan)

Quote #2

“What we are doing to the forests of the world is but a mirror reflection of what we are doing to ourselves and one another.” (Mahatma Gandhi)

Quote #3

“Forests are the world’s air-conditioning system – the lungs of the planet – and we are on the verge of switching it off.” (Prince Charles)

Bonus Quote

“The rainforest once covered 14% of the world’s surface and now it covers a mere 6%. 2.47 acres of rainforest are destroyed every second. Approximately 135 plant, animal, and insect species are being lost every day due to deforestation. At this rate, the remaining rainforest could be consumed with 40 years. What do you plan to do about it?” (Unknown)

Peace, love, light, and joy,
Andrew Arthur Dawson

The Amazon Rainforest Burns Away And Hardly Anyone Seems To Care…

When Notre Dame caught on fire and was in danger of burning down, the world reacted in sadness, billionaires swooped in to save the day, and repair became imminent. Yet even though the Amazon rainforest is now burning at a rapid rate and is something that most definitely affects our global ecosystem, hardly anyone seems to care, especially those who have ample money and resources to do something about it.

Frankly, I’m amazed at how very little people seem to care these days about preserving and protecting nature. I’m sure many have no idea that 10 to 20 percent of our world’s oxygen supply potentially comes from the Amazon rainforest. Can you imagine a world where our oxygen supply has depleted so much due to us not caring enough about nature and because of it, everyone now struggles with something as simple as breathing and oxygen has become a commodity that only the rich can afford? I’m sure the idea seems quite preposterous and sounds straight out of the pages of a future science-fiction book or movie script, but is it really that hard to believe that something like this can happen in light of what we are seeing happening all around our planet?

Glaciers are melting, various species of life are disappearing, the planet continues to experience the effects of global warming, solely because too many of us keep on polluting it and too few of us are doing enough to make a dam bit difference. Everywhere I walk, I see tons of trash strewn on the ground. People eat their fast food and then leave it in parking lots next to where their cars were parked. Empty drink containers commonly get tossed out of windows from moving cars. And let’s not forget all those cigarette butts that get left behind in the environment, which I’m sure for most of those who smoke, they have no idea that each one of those they toss is going to take anywhere from 18 months to 10 years to decompose.

But why care about all this when the consequences of our own actions in the environment isn’t affecting us right now? That’s at least what the ego’s answer is to all this isn’t it? Selfishness and self-centeredness are driving people to litter and burn our world away and no one seems to be blinking an eye. Yet, people seem to care more about a man-made structure like Notre Dame burning down, something that wouldn’t have impacted the everyday living of the rest of the planet, where millions and millions of dollars is still donated to fix it. The priorities people seem to have on this planet feels outright ridiculous these days.

While most of us probably don’t have the ability to make much of an impact on the burning Amazon rainforest other than donating a small amount to a legit organization dedicated to preserving it, there is plenty we can do much closer to home. Reduce, reuse, and recycle is the tagline that’s often used for guidance in this. And let’s not forget that we all have the ability to pick up trash when we see it. How often have you come across some trash that’s left on the ground somewhere in our environment that we ourselves could pick up and drop in a receptacle that’s mere steps away?

There will come a day when the impact of us not caring enough about our environment, as much as we do about the material worldliness of this world, is going catch up to us. If we allow too much of our rainforests to get destroyed, if we pollute too much of this planet, and annihilate too much of our natural ecosystems, there’s a good chance that those dystopian science-fiction novels and films will come to fruition, which I pray that if that day ever comes, I’m long gone.

In the meantime, I’m most certainly going to do my best to try to prevent that from happening and it starts by being more mindful of my own contributions to waste, by reusing what things I can, by recycling the things that are recyclable, by picking up my own trash and even contributing to picking up others, and making a small donation to a legitimate organization that can help the Amazon, which include The Amazon Conservation Association, the Amazon Conservation Team, Amazon Watch, Rainforest Foundation US, Rainforest Trust, or the Rainforest Action Network.

Peace, love, light, and joy,
Andrew Arthur Dawson

Question Of The Day

Today’s question is…

Who would you say is the funniest comedian (alive or deceased) that can always make you laugh whenever you see them performing one of their routines?

Peace, love, light, and joy,
Andrew Arthur Dawson


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Grateful Heart Monday

Welcome to another chapter of Grateful Heart Monday where every week begins with me expressing a piece of gratitude from my life, which for today is getting to see a very funny Wayne Brady at the Motor City Casino Sound Stage in Detroit, Michigan about a week ago now.

The first time I ever saw Wayne Brady was on television in a show called “Whose Line Is It Anyway” and boy did he make me laugh from the onset. His quick off the cuff and totally random sense of humor that always seems to involve his pretty amazing singing voice and some seriously good dancing skills truly makes for a unique and quite hilarious style of comedy that’s straight up my alley.

The first time I ever saw him perform live was back in Washington D.C. in the early 2000’s at the Kennedy Center and man, his style of comedy was even better in person. So, when I saw he was coming to Detroit’s Motor City Casino in mid-August this year, I made sure to let my sister and my partner know that tickets to it would make a great birthday present when they asked what I wanted for it back in early May.

The truth is, I really needed to see this show because I haven’t been laughing much at all these days. With several tragic losses of close friends and the ongoing saga of health and family issues, I rarely seem to feel any desire to laugh, let alone even smile anymore. But, if anyone was going to make me laugh, it would be Wayne Brady. And that he did. In fact, I laughed so hard during his show that my facial and jaw muscles hurt by the end of it.

They say that laughter is good for the soul and beneficial for healing the mind and body. I’ve even read of stories where people healed themselves of various ailments, including cancer, by watching comedy movies and television shows day in and day out. Thankfully, I can say that Wayne Brady definitely helped me on that path, as I felt a whole heck of a lot better after his performance. Some of that may also be because he actually called on me in the audience at one point and asked what I did for a living. I told him I was in the recovery from alcohol and drug addiction field (which is indeed the only work I’m doing these days), at which point he asked the room to give a round of applause, which frankly felt really good in the moment given how draining recovery has been with so many deaths as of late.

So, yes, I’m extremely grateful for getting to see Wayne Brady in another live performance. The man is definitely most gifted and God has surely blessed him with a talent that seems to make just about any type of audience laugh incredibly, including one that even had a downtrodden me among its midst, which is something I know I truly needed the other day, probably more than any of you may ever know.

Peace, love, light, and joy,
Andrew Arthur Dawson

Question Of The Day

Today’s question is…

What is one thing you can definitely say is better about your life today, as compared to the past when your life was fueled by an addiction (besides just being sober that is)? (For those who may never have succumbed to an addiction-fueled existence, what is one thing that’s better about your life today, as compared to where you were at ten years ago?)

Peace, love, light, and joy,
Andrew Arthur Dawson


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Daily Reflection

“I’d gladly take any day sober over all the days I was giving in to each of my former addictions.” (Andrew Arthur Dawson) 

About a week ago, I posted a very similar quote on my Facebook page and told the world I was really struggling to continue believing this, even though it’s been a widely accepted quote throughout the many rooms of recovery from addiction. But, after much retrospection, especially after reading all of the ensuing friend comments that came from that posting, I realized it’s only my ego that’s been trying to convince me of this, which is the very thing my disease of addiction wants. Why? So, that it can drive me back out there, into the depths of despair, where hopelessness and a futility of life became my constant companions.

While it is true that my life has felt exceptionally difficult this year thus far continuing to navigate the day to day trials of chronic pain, dealing with several close friend’s tragic deaths, being ostracized from my sister’s family due to her husband’s resentments of me, and overall feeling like I’m more invisible than not in this world, the reality is my life is far better than any of the days I was engaged in the pursuance of promiscuous sex and codependent love, or chasing after massive quantities of alcohol, drugs and cigarettes.

Waking up in stranger’s beds, constantly feeling the need to shower because I felt so dirty, not having any sense of personality or identity with self because I kept giving my power away to toxic people who didn’t really care about me, losing time in all my states of fog, causing plenty of damage to my mind and body, the fact is through a simple reflection upon each of those years where I lived in any one of former addictions, I can see clearly just how much my present sober days aren’t half as bad as my past addiction-laden ones.

Frankly, there is only one reason why my ego fondly remembers any of my addiction-fueled days. It’s because during each of them, I didn’t care, about anything. I was shut down. My heart was closed, so much so, that I remained constantly numb, which is precisely why my ego would like me to cave in and dive back into an addiction-filled existence. Yet, I know that even though it might feel good initially to not feel all this pain and suffering, in the long run, it will only create more.

So yes, while I may not like my present circumstances of life, I most certainly like them much more than all those days when my life was governed mostly by addictions.

Dear God, I thank you for helping me to remember how dark all my days were when I lived in one addiction after another. I know that at least remaining clean and sober from all of them gives me a fighting chance, more hope, and a much stronger ability to hear You. Please keep me listening to You and not my ego, as I know my present sober days truly are much better than at any of my past addiction ones.

Peace, love, light, and joy,
Andrew Arthur Dawson

Silly Joke Friday

Silly Joke #1

A man was walking home alone late one night when he hears a BUMP… BUMP… BUMP… behind him. Walking faster he looks back, and makes out the image of an upright coffin banging its way down the middle of the street towards him. BUMP… BUMP… BUMP… Terrified, the man begins to run towards his home, the coffin bouncing quickly behind him … faster… faster… BUMP… BUMP… BUMP… He runs up to his door, fumbles with his keys, opens the door, rushes in, slams and locks the door behind him. However, the coffin crashes through his door, with the lid of the coffin clapping… clappity-BUMP… clappity-BUMP… clappity-BUMP… on the heels of the terrified man. Rushing upstairs to the bathroom, the man locks himself in. His heart is pounding; his head is reeling; his breath is coming in sobbing gasps. With a loud CRASH the coffin starts breaking down the door. Bumping and clapping towards him. The man SCREAMS and reaches for something heavy, anything .. his hand comes to rest on a large bottle of Robitussin. Desperate, he throws the cough syrup as hard as he can at the apparition… and… the coffin stops!

Silly Joke #2

A lady went into a bar in Amarillo and saw a cowboy with his feet propped up on a table. He had the biggest boots she’d ever seen. The woman asked the cowboy if it’s true what they say about men with big feet are well endowed. The cowboy grinned and said, “Shur’ is, little lady. Why don’t you come on out to the bunkhouse and let me prove it to you?” The woman wanted to find out for herself, so she spent the night with him. The next morning, she handed him a $100 bill. Blushing, he said, “Well, thankee, ma’am. Ah’m real flattered. Ain’t nobody ever paid me fer mah services before.” “Don’t be flattered! Take the money and buy yourself some boots that fit!”

Silly Joke #3

A very successful businessman had a meeting with his new son-in-law. “I love my daughter, and now I welcome you into the family,” said the man. “To show you how much we care for you, I’m making you a 50-50 partner in my business. All you have to do is go to the factory every day and learn the operations.”The son-in-law interrupted. “I hate factories. I can’t stand the noise.” “I see,” replied the father-in-law. “Well then you’ll work in the office and take charge of some of the operations.” “I hate office work,” said the son-on-law. “I can’t stand being stuck behind a desk all day.” “Wait a minute,” said the father-in-law. “I just made you half-owner of a moneymaking organization, but you don’t like factories and won’t work in an office. What am I going to do with you?” “Easy,” said the young man. “Buy me out.”

Bonus Silly Joke

A young ventriloquist is touring Norway and puts on a show in a small fishing town. With his dummy on his knee, he starts going through his usual dumb blonde jokes. Suddenly, a blonde woman in the fourth row stands on her chair and starts shouting, ‘I’ve heard enough of your stupid blonde jokes. What makes you think you can stereotype blonde women that way? What does the color of a woman’s hair have to do with her worth as a human being? It is men like you who keep women like me from being respected at work and in the community, and from reaching our full potential as people. Its people like you that make others think that all blondes are dumb. You and your kind continue to perpetuate discrimination against not only blondes but women in general, pathetically all in the name of humor!’ The embarrassed ventriloquist begins to apologize, and the blonde interrupts yelling, ‘You stay out of this!!! I’m talking to that little shit on your lap!!!’

Peace, love, light, and joy,
Andrew Arthur Dawson

Thought For The Day

Quote #1

“Family isn’t always blood. It’s the people in your life who want you in theirs; the ones who accept you for who you are. The ones who would do anything to see you smile & who love you no matter what.” (Maya Angelou)

Quote #2

“Family isn’t defined only by last names or by blood; it’s defined by commitment and by love. It means showing up when they need it most. It means having each other’s backs. It means choosing to love each other even on those days when you struggle to like each other. It means never giving up on each other!” (Dave Willis)

Quote #3

“Family is life’s most precious gift and greatest blessing. An irreplaceable, close-knit group that works, plays, and loves together through the good times and the bad, whether near or far.” (Unknown)

Bonus Quote

“Families are like branches on a tree, we grow in different directions, yet our roots remain as one.” (Unknown)

Peace, love, light, and joy,
Andrew Arthur Dawson

“The Farewell”, An Emotionally Heartstring Pulling Movie About Keeping A Painful Secret At All Costs

Could you keep a secret at all costs from a family member or some other loved one from your life who was diagnosed with a terminal disease but didn’t know? That’s the very premise of a very emotionally heartstring pulling movie titled “The Farewell” starring Awkwafina as Billi and written and directed by Lulu Wang.

The film begins with Billi living her life far away from her roots in China in downtown New York City when she receives a phone call from her grandmother, who she affectionately refers to as her Nai Nai (played by Shuzhen Zhao). It’s obvious how close the two of them are, even though they haven’t seen each other in person in a long while. That’s all about to change though when Billi discovers from her parents, who actually brought Billi from Changchun, China some 25 years ago to America, that her Nai Nai has stage 4 lung cancer and has been given less than three months to live. Due to a Chinese tradition, the family has opted not to tell Nai Nai the truth about her health and instead decide to carry the burden for her. Chinese culture believes it’s far better for the person who’s diagnosed not to know, as it tends to make their remaining days on Earth far more positive. Nevertheless, everyone from Nai Nai’s family is in on the secret except for her of course and a wedding has been quickly arranged to bring the whole clan together under a much more hopeful pretense rather than a saddened one. Unfortunately, Billi is asked not to go by her parents because they don’t think she can keep the secret, yet Billi is determined to go anyway. Can Billi ultimately hide her sadness and spend a few of her Nai Nai’s remaining days connecting as they always do? That indeed becomes Billi’s greatest dilemma and hardest challenge she’s had to face in her life yet.

Watching this movie made me realize just how different Chinese culture is from our own. Here in America, the idea of keeping a terminal cancer diagnosis from the patient themselves seems utterly preposterous. Yet, in Asian culture, not knowing about a terminal diagnosis has actually proven to have beneficial effects on the patient, and in some cases led to much longer times of survival. I get that completely, as I can absolutely promise you that if I was diagnosed with a terminal illness and told I had very little time left, I’d probably just give up and crawl into my shell until I moved on from this plane of existence. On some level, that’s precisely why I don’t go to doctors anymore, because the news they always gave me did nothing but make me depressed and leave me with very little room for hope. That’s why I’ve lived with chronic pain for so long without doctor intervention because my hope has absolutely superseded what doctors first told me years ago.

Regardless, I’m not sure if I could keep a secret from say my partner Chris if his family suddenly told me they knew he had a terminal disease, but he didn’t. It’s not that my words would break the secret and bring the truth out though. It’s more like I don’t think I could hide the pain of it from my face or stifle the tears. I tend to wear my emotions on my sleeve, which is precisely the battle Billi faces throughout the film.

“The Farewell” is mostly spent in subtitles and truly explores Eastern culture in a way that felt extremely genuine. It really helped me to understand just how different the Chinese-American culture is from the Chinese culture itself and kudos to Lulu Wang for creating such an authentic film on every level. There wasn’t a single moment where I felt like I was watching people acting, as more so it was as if I was watching the tragic events of a terrible diagnosis unfold before my eyes with a closely-knit family who truly loves and supports each other in ways I’m not sure I ever could. I fully expect this movie will garner a few awards season nominations when it arrives and I definitely give it five stars.

Peace, love, light, and joy,
Andrew Arthur Dawson

Question Of The Day

Today’s question is…

If life truly does exist beyond our current vessel and you were given the ability to take one thing from this life with you into the next, what would it be?

Peace, love, light, and joy,
Andrew Arthur Dawson


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Grateful Heart Monday

Welcome to Grateful Heart Monday where my week always begins with a piece of gratitude from my life, which for today is for a customer service supervisor from Delta who truly offered me a blessing when I most needed it.

I’m sure many could probably think of at least an unpleasant experience or two they’ve had during a call to one of those 800-number customer service hotlines. I know I sure have, but thankfully a few weeks ago that wasn’t the case when I ended up having to call Delta’s 800 number late one Tuesday night to cancel a flight I was on that was only two days away. After suddenly learning that my sister’s husband’s resentments of me had led to him spoiling the surprise of me coming to visit for her 50thbirthday weekend, I was asked by my sister, who was in a terrible state of anxiety and stress because of it, to reschedule my trip to a later date, one she knew where her husband was going to be away. Needless to say, it would be a gross understatement in saying I wasn’t in the best of headspace when I dialed Delta’s number.

Given I had a non-refundable ticket, I didn’t have very high hopes of what that call was going to achieve, especially after having to wait for a 50-minute callback and another 45 minutes on top of that due to the first agent having constant computer malfunctions. But, my first piece of gratitude came when I was transferred to a supervisor who was very friendly and actually open to listening to all what I was going through. For a good ten minutes I opened up about my struggles with my physical pain, all the issues I had with my sister’s husband, and the state of my mental health over it all. On some level, this woman became like a therapist who was simply willing to listen, something that I often feel many customer service agents don’t do. Thankfully this one did. Because at the end of it, she told me she understood and was willing to change my ticket to the future date with no penalties whatsoever. Even better, the rescheduled flight was about $40 cheaper and became a Delta credit for any flight I may book down the road. But, the biggest blessing came when I asked her name at the end of that call, because it was one that I feel was maybe God sending me a message through.

What was her name?

Grace.

And boy did I get that from her, a lot in fact.

So yes, I feel that I received much of God’s grace through a woman named the same, simply by her just listening to me, offering compassion, and changing my flight with no issues whatsoever. I’m sure when I actually board the new flight a few months from now that I’ll be thinking of her and silently expressing my gratitude to God for a woman He named Grace because I sure got a lot of that late one Tuesday night on a call to Delta’s customer service.

Peace, love, light, and joy,
Andrew Arthur Dawson

Thought For The Day

Quote #1

“Anger makes you smaller, while forgiveness forces you to grow beyond what you were.” (Cherie Carter-Scott)

Quote #2

“Everyone makes mistakes in life, but that doesn’t mean they have to pay for them the rest of their life. Sometimes good people make bad choices, but it doesn’t mean they are bad, it means they are human.” (Unknown)

Quote #3

“Forgiveness doesn’t excuse their behavior. Forgiveness prevents their behavior from destroying your heart.” (Hermant Smarty)

Bonus Quote

“Many people have trouble with forgiveness because they have been taught it is a singular act to be completed in one sitting. That is not so. Forgiveness has many layers, many seasons.” (Unknown)

Peace, love, light, and joy,
Andrew Arthur Dawson

When You Miss Your Sister’s Surprise 50th Because Of Someone Else’s Resentments…

I missed my sister’s surprise 50th birthday celebration this year, not because I didn’t want to go, and not because I couldn’t go, but because my sister’s husband’s judgements, anger, and negativity of me prevented it from happening.

It’s no secret that he doesn’t like me much. After many years of me living a full life of recovery from my former addiction-fueled existence, he still can’t seem to see me beyond the mess I once was, when selfish addiction behaviors ruled my life. Instead of fully forgiving me for my past and seeing all the recovery work I’ve done to become a better person, he tends to still see me as a selfish addict, even though his own family has forgiven me and seen all the positive changes I’ve made to become a far more selfless person. It’s this very reason that led to the cancellation of my trip to surprise my sister for her 50th birthday.

Unfortunately, for someone who sees me in such a negative and judgmental light, it’s been next to impossible to prove to him I’ve changed, as was evident during the planning of this surprise birthday weekend. It began one Sunday afternoon when I received an email from him that said he was planning some surprises for her 50th and that he had booked a flight for me as part of the surprise using a combination of his money and frequent flyer miles. What he didn’t ask though was whether those dates and times actually worked for me, as I do have a life and health issues to consider whenever I’m making any sort of plans, especially to travel somewhere and on such short notice (two weeks out). Instead, he told me the flight was set and not changeable and only required of me to send him my full name and birth date to finalize the ticket. Ironically, I found out later that the other person he flew in, my sister’s best friend, didn’t receive the same treatment and instead was asked whether the flight date and times worked for her.

Nevertheless, when I called the airline later that night and asked if my flight was indeed not changeable, they said I actually could modify it and all I needed was to pay the difference if the switch made the flight more expensive. So, I modified the flight and ended up having a slight increase in price, which I paid for myself, that ultimately allowed for two things. One, transportation to and from the airport, as the previous flight times didn’t allow for that. And two, to arrive the evening before, so that I could take care of my health and do my normal spiritual routines the next morning to be more present mind, body, and soul for my sister.

Sadly, after notifying my sister’s husband of my changes, he cancelled my flight, told me not to come, and said I was selfish, even though none of my changes would have affected his plans, nor had I asked him to accommodate me any differently. When I booked my own flight after that, using none of his funds or miles, it only led to him becoming even more angry when he found out. He told me in a very unsettling phone call that I wasn’t welcomed in his house again, and that he’d be filled with so much animosity if I chose to still show up on my sister’s surprise 50th birthday weekend that she wouldn’t have a good time. That call ended with him hanging up on me in the midst of me attempting to work through the situation.

I’ve spent my whole life caving into bullies just like this, but I stood my ground and emailed him to say I was still coming, as this was about my sister and not him. That only led to him ruining my part of the surprise two days before my flight was leaving, as he told her I was coming and convinced her they would be busy until the end of the weekend. Because of this, she asked me to cancel and reschedule to a future date where she could spend more time with me. I did my best to suggest he wasn’t telling the truth and that there was more going on beyond what he was saying on her birthday weekend. Unfortunately, she became overwhelmed and said she couldn’t handle the anxiety this was causing her, and asked again for me to reschedule to a future date, of which I did, solely because I know my presence at that point would only have led to his animosity of me hurting her even more.

While I very much struggled with sadness throughout her 50th birthday weekend because it triggered some old childhood issues, I struggled more with sadness knowing how much my sister didn’t have the birthday weekend she originally asked for and deserved. Regrettably, she’s still living in the same pattern we both did with our mother, someone who controlled our very existence, who limited our ability to be ourselves, and rarely saw us in the love and light we deserved.

Regardless, while there’s a good chance my sister’s husband may never accept me with the unconditional love and light of Christ like my sister and my nephews do, I will continue to pray that one day he still might, where he no longer allows anger, resentments, judgments, and control to dominate his life and hurt others in the process.

As for me, I decided to set a boundary and not spend time around him anymore. I realized how unhealthy it is for me and my sister. And although I’ve forgiven him for this and all the pain he’s brought upon my life, I won’t allow myself to be treated again in the way he has, the same way I used to allow myself to be treated by my Mom and so many others.

And as for my sister, I want you to know how much I love you and wish I could have spent your surprise 50th birthday weekend with you, but I understand why I couldn’t. One day I’m convinced you will find your inner voice to stand up for what you truly need, for what you truly want, and for what you truly deserve…including having any birthday exactly as you wish, and seeing your brother whenever you want as well.

Peace, love, light, and joy,
Andrew Arthur Dawson

Silly Joke Friday

Silly Joke #1

Three men were waiting to go to heaven. Saint Peter was at the gate and said to all of them, “However good you were to your wife, that is the vehicle you will get in heaven”. The first guy comes up to the gate and says, “I never, ever cheated on my wife and I always unconditionally loved her”. So, Saint Peter gives him a Rolls Royce. The next man comes up and says, “I cheated on my wife a little but I always did my best to still show her all the love I could.” Saint Peter then gives him a Mustang. The next guy came up and said, “Sadly, I cheated on my wife a lot”. Saint Peter then gives him a scooter. Next day the guy that got the scooter was riding along and he saw the guy who owned the Rolls Royce crying. He asked, “Why are you crying when you got such a nice car?!!!” The man sobbed, “My wife just went by on roller skates!”.

Silly Joke #2

Sally was driving home from one of her business trips in Northern Arizona, when she saw an elderly Navajo woman walking on the side of the road. As the trip was a long and quiet one, she stopped the car and asked the Navajo woman if she would like a ride. With a word or two of thanks, she got in the car. After resuming the journey and a bit of small talk, the Navajo woman noticed a brown bag on the seat next to Sally. “What’s in the bag?” asked the old woman. Sally looked down at the brown bag and said, “It’s a bottle of wine. Got it for my husband.” The Navajo woman was silent for a moment, and then speaking with the quiet wisdom of an elder said, “Good trade.”

Silly Joke #3

A mother took her little boy to church. While in church the little boy said, “Mommy, I have to pee.”The mother said to the little boy, “It’s not appropriate to say the word ‘pee’ in church. So, from now on whenever you have to ‘pee’ just tell me that you have to ‘whisper’.” The following Sunday, the little boy went to church with his father and during the service said to his father, “Daddy, I have to whisper!” The father looked at him and said, “Okay son, why don’t you whisper in my ear then?”

Bonus Silly Joke

A cowboy rode into town and stopped at a saloon for a drink. Unfortunately, the locals always had a habit of picking on strangers, which he was. When he finished his drink, he found his horse had been stolen.He goes back into the bar, handily flips his gun into the air, catches it above his head without even looking and fires a shot into the ceiling. “WHICH ONE OF YOU SIDEWINDERS STOLE MY HORSE?” he yelled with surprising forcefulness. No one answered. “ALL RIGHT, I’M GONNA HAVE ANOTHER BEER, AND IF MY HOSS AIN’T BACK OUTSIDE BY THE TIME I FINNISH, I’M GONNA DO WHAT I DUN IN TEXAS! AND I DON’T LIKE TO HAVE TO DO WHAT I DUN IN TEXAS!” Some of the locals shifted restlessly. He had another beer, walked outside, and his horse is back! He saddles-up and starts to ride out of town. The bartender wanders out of the bar and asks, “Say partner, before you go…what happened in Texas?” The cowboy turned back and said, “I had to walk home.”

Peace, love, light, and joy,
Andrew Arthur Dawson

Question Of The Day

Today’s question is…

Name one thing that didn’t quite meet your expectation and because of it, you attempted to control, muck with, or fix yourself, only to see the problem become much worse in the process? (Ex. Attempting to fix a leak in a sink that ends up causing some flooding and a call to an expensive plumber to rectify.)

Peace, love, light, and joy,
Andrew Arthur Dawson


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Daily Reflection

“Things will happen. You can’t stop them from happening, but you can control your reaction from making things worse. React positively. Live happily.” (Ravi V. Melwani.)

I can’t count the number of times I’ve messed with something that wasn’t quite up to meeting some standard my brain had set for it. Just the other day in fact, after a very long day, I came home to see the work a contractor had done for me in my shower. His task was to paint some old faux tile to make it look more modernized. It looked great and so I proceeded to put the bathroom back together, as I had taken everything out of it for the small job. Unfortunately, the paint hadn’t fully dried quite yet, of which I quickly discovered upon putting my shower curtain rod back up against the area where some of his work had been done. The result? A small nick in the paint that to others wouldn’t have mattered, but to me it was totally glaring me in the face.

I know I should have left it alone. After all, it was only a small nick. But I didn’t. Instead, I mucked with it, so much so that I made things much worse. That small spot turned into a much larger one, one that ended up needing the contractor to come back again the very next night to fix the mess I had made, which ended up costing me more money out of my pocket as well.

This is a repeated lesson that keeps on surfacing throughout my life. I’ve done things like this repeatedly, again and again, trying to grasp control of some “thing” my brain doesn’t like and fix it as quick as possible, only to create a domino effect of the absolute worse messes because of it.

So, what’s the solution?

Acceptance.

A word whose application seems so simple, yet something I’ve struggled with immensely for a very long time. The acceptance of things that appear less than perfect to my ego and the subsequent letting go of my attempt to control all the imperfections of life that cross my path has truly been my Achilles heel. I surely still have more work cut out for me with this and I know it most assuredly begins with continuing to work on my level of acceptance.

God, I thank You for the constant reminders that keep popping up in my life to show me that acceptance truly is the answer to all my problems today, including all the ones that I continue to create and make worse each time I don’t accept the imperfections that life brings my way. I thank you for the ongoing help and guidance you keep on sending my way to work through this issue.

Peace, love, light, and joy,
Andrew Arthur Dawson

Thought For The Day

Quote #1

“The people who are successful are those who are grateful for everything they have. Giving thanks for what we have always opens the door for more to come, and ungratefulness always closes the door.” (Alan Cohen)

Quote #2

“Gratitude produces deep, abiding joy because we know that God is working in us, even through difficulties.” (Charles Stanley)

Quote #3

“When I started counting my blessings, my whole life turned around.” (Willie Nelson)

Bonus Quote

“What if you woke up today with only the things you thanked God for yesterday?” (Anonymous)

Peace, love, light, and joy,
Andrew Arthur Dawson

Grateful Heart Monday

Welcome to today’s Grateful Heart Monday, a time of writing that’s always reserved for expressing some gratitude, which for today is for having a lot more energy and stamina this summer that’s allowed me to do many more activities that I haven’t done in years.

In the past few weeks alone, I attended the Ohio State Fair for the first time and also went to Cedar Point twice (once to the amusement park and once to the water park). Between the three I’ve walked some 40,000 steps and over 15 miles, which for me is a huge, and I mean huge, achievement, as it’s something unheard of in my life over the past bunch of years. Add in my trip to Poughkeepsie where I walked the large grounds of two historic sites and a day I spent in New York City where I traversed much of Manhattan on foot, I’ve actually done more physical activity than any of the previous seven years of my life. It’s not just with places I’ve gone to either because I’ve also been able to do an incredible amount of outdoor yard work this summer as well.

While I may still be dealing with plenty of health limitations, by the grace of God, none of them have stopped me dead in my tracks this summer, as they have in so many prior summers. I’m not exactly sure why this is, but the reality is I’ve been far more physically active ever since the weather began warming up this year.

In light of that, instead of focusing in on any of those physical things that I’ve wished I could do and haven’t been able to yet, I’m simply going to thank God today for the fact that I know my health is improving on every level, because this summer has absolutely, positively been chock full of things I haven’t done for a very long time.

So, for all the gardening and landscaping I’ve done, games of mini-golf I’ve played, rides I’ve ridden, miles I’ve walked, places I’ve travelled to, and the plenty of other things I’ve gotten to try this summer that I haven’t in a long time, I’m grateful to You God, as I can see how much You truly have been answering my prayers and healing me all along.

Peace, love, light, and joy,
Andrew Arthur Dawson

Question Of The Day

Today’s question is…

What is something that you could tell God right now that you’re thankful for that happened to you today?

Peace, love, light, and joy,
Andrew Arthur Dawson


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Daily Reflection

“God gave you a gift of 86,400 seconds today. Have you used one of them to say ‘Thank You’?” (William Arthur Ward)

“Act as if Andrew!” That was the suggestion given to me by my sponsor in recovery recently when I told her I was really struggling with prayer and not feeling like anything was being answered in my life. When I asked her what she meant by that, she said why not act as if God has already answered my prayers by thanking Him, rather than constantly praying for what I feel I need.

Honestly, of the 86,400 seconds that occur every single day, I probably say “Thank You” to God far less than I ask Him for something. Most of the time I find myself praying for my health to improve, instead of thanking God for all the healing that’s already taken or currently taking place. Or the fact that I pray for my relationship to improve with my partner, instead of thanking God for how close the two of us have grown and continue to grow. Or that I pray for my sponsees to get their step work done, instead of thanking God for how much work He’s done to keep them sober and how much they’ve done in turn.

The reality is it feels pretty foreign to thank God for things I’ve been praying for that I feel haven’t been fully answered. But I’ve been wondering about something ever since my sponsor made this rather simple suggestion. Could it be possible that many of my prayers haven’t totally materialized yet because my focus has mostly been on what I feel is lacking in my life and in others as well, instead of being on all the wonderful blessings that are right in front of me all the time or the ones that I know will come when they are meant to?

Maybe it’s time for me to stop praying for so many things I think I or the world needs and instead start thanking God for everything, as maybe then I might start seeing the world through a more joyful set of eyes, rather than looking through ones that have been too blindly focused in prayer to see that God has already answered quite a number of my prayers.

Dear God, I thank you for helping me to praise more than pray, to acknowledge more than ask, and to focus on what I’ve been given more than what I feel has been taken. I know I need to act as if You’ve already answered all my prayers, because the truth is, you probably have…

Peace, love, light, and joy,
Andrew Arthur Dawson

Silly Joke Friday

Silly Joke #1

One day a fella was driving home when he suddenly realized that it was his daughter’s birthday and *shock* he hadn’t bought her anything. Out of the corner of his eye he notices a shopping mall. Knowing that it was ‘now or never’, he pulls his car through three lanes of traffic, finds a parking bay and runs into the mall. After a frantic search he finds a toy store, goes inside and attracts the attention of the shop assistant. When asked what he’d like, he simply says: “a Barbie Doll”. The shop assistant looks at him in a condescending manner and asks, “So Sir, which Barbie would that be?” The man looks surprised so the assistant continues, “We have Barbie Goes To the Ball at $19.99, Barbie goes Shopping at $19.99, Barbie goes Clubbing at $19.99, Barbie Goes To The Gym at $19.99, Cyber Barbie at $19.99 and Divorced Barbie at $249.99.” The man can’t help himself and asks, “Why is Divorced Barbie $249.99 when all those other Barbies are selling for $19.99?!!” “Well Sir, that’s quite obvious!” says the assistant, “Divorced Barbie also comes with Ken’s house, Ken’s sports car, Ken’s furniture, Ken’s entertainment system, Ken’s workout equipment, Ken’s pool table and well, pretty much anything Ken has ever owned…”

Silly Joke #2

There once was a fly buzzing around a barn one day when she happened upon a pile of fresh cow manure. Due to the fact that it had been hours since she had had her last meal, she flew down and began to eat. She ate and ate. Finally, she decided she had eaten enough and tried to fly away. She had eaten too much though, and could not get off the ground. As she looked around wondering what to do, she spotted a pitchfork leaning up against the wall. She climbed to the top of the handle and jumped off, thinking that once she got airborne, she would be able to take flight. Unfortunately, she was wrong and she dropped like a rock, and smashed when she hit the floor. Dead! So, what’s the moral of this story? Never fly off the handle when you know you’re full of shi*t.

Silly Joke #3

A preacher was completing a fiery temperance sermon: with great expression he said, “If I had all the beer in the world, I’d take it and throw it into the river.”With even greater emphasis he said, “And if I had all the wine in the world, I’d take it and throw it into the river.” And then finally, he said, “And if I had all the whiskey in the world, I’d take it and throw it into the river.” He then abruptly sat down. The song leader then stood very cautiously and announced with a smile, “For our closing song, let us now sing Hymn # 365: “Shall We Gather at the River.”

Bonus Joke (Credit goes to my friend George C.)

Do you think that at the 12 Step recovery meetings for Arson’s Anonymous that they still ask at the end of each meeting if anyone has a burning desire?

Peace, love, light, and joy,
Andrew Arthur Dawson

Question Of The Day

Today’s question is…

If you suddenly found yourself stranded on a deserted island where you actually discovered a home with a working tv that didn’t get any channels, but did have a DVD player connected to it, and were able to have one movie of your choosing to play on it for the rest of your existence, what would you want it to be?


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Peace, love, light, and joy,
Andrew Arthur Dawson

Daily Reflection

“You will get there when you are meant to and not one moment sooner… so relax, breath, and be patient.” (Mandy Hale)

I was cleaning my partner’s car one morning and hit the button on his key fab to open the trunk only to watch it rise so incredibly slowly. I tried to push the tailgate upward to make it go faster, but to no avail. After cleaning the area where the trunk met the bumper, I hit the button once again, only to watch it descend just as slowly. Once more I tried to make the process go faster, but again to no avail, when suddenly I realized how much this was just like my life.

How many times have I tried to rush things along that seemed to be progressing ever so slowly? And how many times have I ever gotten much success from those forced efforts to speed things up?

Very little, if any at all…

Because things in life like the healing I’m going through I’ve learned truly have their own cycle of time and require nothing more than patience, something I’ve struggled with immensely throughout my life. Maybe everything in life happens when it’s meant to and not one moment sooner, and any efforts we make to change this reality are only going to stress our minds and bodies out. So, maybe it’s time I focus more on relaxing, breathing, and working on being a little more patient while it all unfolds exactly as it’s meant to?

Dear God, I know I’ve been quite impatient throughout my life, especially as of late when it comes to my health and healing. I thank You for all the lessons I continue to learn when it comes to the art of patience, like the one that came through something as simple as a slowly moving automated tailgate…

Peace, love, light, and joy,
Andrew Arthur Dawson

Thought For The Day

Quote #1

“Flowers always make people better, happier, and more helpful; they are sunshine, food and medicine for the soul.” (Luther Burbank)

Quote #2

“A garden requires patient labor and attention. Plants do not grow merely to satisfy ambitions or to fulfill good intentions. They thrive because someone expended effort on them.” (Liberty Hyde Bailey)

Quote #3

“The glory of gardening: hands in the dirt, head in the sun, heart with nature. To nurture a garden is to feed not just on the body, but the soul.” (Alfred Austin)

Bonus Quote

“A garden is a grand teacher. It teaches patience and careful watchfulness; it teaches industry and thrift; above al it teaches entire trust.” (Gertrude Jekyll)

Peace, love, light, and joy,
Andrew Arthur Dawson

Grateful Heart Monday

Welcome to another chapter of Grateful Heart Monday, a day where my writing always reflects upon a piece of gratitude, which for today is for all the gifts and lessons I’ve been given from gardening and landscaping.

Back in the day, other than being forced to cut my family’s yard, you would never catch me digging my hands in the dirt to plant something or trying to beautify anything. In fact, it was more the opposite, where I probably caused wreckage in nature more than not. Back then I wasn’t connected to nature whatsoever, let alone God for that matter. But, when I bought my first home in Falls Church, VA around 1999, that all changed, as then I found myself caring a lot more about it, mainly because I now had a yard and garden to maintain. Trimming, pruning, weeding, fertilizing, edging, planting, and the like soon became the norm for me after that and it was then I first began experiencing gratitude from it all.

I remember the first tree I ever planted in the front of that yard, a crape myrtle, and how excited I got the next spring when suddenly it exploded in color. It was as if some part of me came alive along with it. I’ll never forget that feeling, which was precisely what drove me into my love for gardening and landscaping. I found a real sense of peace and connection to Source from it, which sadly, is why I felt sadness when I sold that home, as it felt like I left a piece of me behind there.

I took gardening and landscaping to another level when I moved into the bed and breakfast I purchased after selling that home. For the four years I lived in that inn (The 1848 Island Manor House in Chincoteague, VA), I worked hard to improve the grounds. Working side by side with a professional landscape company, I was able to turn a very dated property into an extremely modernized one with all local plants and foliage. I spent most of my time there outside keeping everything looking tip top and while many find work like that boring and annoying, for me it’s a form of meditation where the stressors of the world temporarily slip away while doing it. While I no longer own the inn, I still have a sense of gratitude in knowing what I left behind there, as I’m sure many guests will enjoy and find peace in the beauty of it all.

Regrettably, I went through a period from 2007 to 2012 where I rented rooms in other people’s homes and felt a great sense of loss from not having a garden or yard of my own to take pride in. I had come to love gardening and landscaping by that point, and without that always felt like I was missing out on a part of me, which is one reason why I felt so blessed when I met my partner Chris in early 2012, as it was then I discovered he owned his own home along with a nice small yard and gardens.

While he had made a good start a few years prior to making it look beautiful by adding sod, several ponds, and a Japanese maple, I saw plenty of potential to give it even more of a “Wow” factor. Ever since, I’ve done my best to make that happen with my main goal always being to create something that might help people feel a sense of God’s peace and joy. Over the years, some of the work that’s been done here is adding new fencing in the back for privacy, putting in rock gardens in areas where grass just didn’t seem to ever want to grow, making a mulch garden along the driveway and adorning it with long Shepard’s hooks where flowering baskets hang from it, removing the old plastic edging in all the gardens and replacing it with bright silver metal edging, changing the fountains from sprayers to bubbles, putting in lights in the ponds and along the gardens, planting a flowering dogwood in the center of the yard, and finding a ton of new native perennials that could shift with the spring, summer, and fall to have color during at least three of the four seasons here. So, yes, gardening and landscaping have provided me many gifts, now about those lessons.

What have I learned the most through landscaping and gardening?

It will never look perfect.

Boy, have I had to learn that lesson again and again, especially with the diseases that the yard has gotten in recent years, where I had to start over several times, and when some of my plants unfortunately didn’t quite make it in the areas I planted them in.

Plants and nature give love but need it to.

I pray over my yard and gardens a lot. It’s not uncommon to see me doing so and although you may think it silly, it’s been proven by science that plants and foliage respond favorably to love and kindness.

And lastly…

Plants and nature are a great tool to connect us to God. 

People often don’t understand how important remaining grounded is, as the Earth connects us to God. I find that all I need to do is take my shoes and socks off and walk around my yard or put my bare hands in the soil of my gardens, as both open my heart and bring me much closer to God.

So, yes, gardening and landscaping have done wonders for my life and taught me quite a bit. I have much to be grateful for when it comes to all I’ve learned throughout the years of doing a task that some choose to think is bothersome and tedious. I can promise you that for me it’s most definitely far from that and something I will always treasure immensely.

Peace, love, light, and joy,
Andrew Arthur Dawson

Question Of The Day

Today’s question is…

What is something you are proud of about yourself that you probably don’t or wouldn’t ever receive any compliments for?

Peace, love, light, and joy,
Andrew Arthur Dawson


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I’m Still Standing…

Just over a week ago now I lost another sponsee to a drug overdose. This was the fifth person I have worked with over the years in the 12 Steps who lost their life in this way and if I include them in the grand tally of all those I’ve known who’ve lost their lives to drug addiction, the total is probably well over 100 at this point.

Reports say that the war on drugs is better this year with a 5% decrease in overdoses. Personally, I think it’s extremely misleading to tell the public something like this, because for someone who’s deep in the trenches of alcohol and drug addiction, doing their best to save souls, I’ve seen anything but a decrease in recent times with this disease.

Yet, for as much as I’m grieving another big loss in my life due to addiction, I’m at least thankful that I’m still clean and sober. I must say though that the night I found out that another sponsee (and close friend at that) had died from an overdose, I really questioned whether I wanted to give up as well. For a moment there, or maybe several long moments, I actually thought about picking up alcohol, drugs, sex, etc., and just saying “F#$k it”.

Nevertheless, I ask myself what more can I do on this war with addiction. I say addiction in general, because I fight this war on multiple fronts and have seen the devastation other addictions do to people as well that destroy their families, their health, and frankly their souls. In the very same week this latest sponsee passed away, two other sponsees from my other 12 Step program let me know they relapsed as well. It surely is frustrating to give it your all and help another suffering individual who’s deeply struggling with an addiction when all you seem to hear about is relapses. But, as I’m so often reminded, what matters the most is this.

I’M STILL CLEAN AND SOBER.

Although I think that darkness/Devil/Satan, etc. would like to see it otherwise. The fact is I’m always one drink, one drug, one random sexual act, and so on, away from being right back on the other side of this disease and most likely becoming a stat myself. As they always say in my world of recovery, I may have another relapse, but there’s a good chance I may not ever have another recovery in me again. I’m not willing to take that chance and I must keep fighting the good fight, doing the best I can to keep spreading my message of experience, strength, and hope to those who want it, those who know that 12 Step recovery is something you do for the rest of your life and not just until you feel better. Because our addictions are always doing push-ups around the corner, waiting for us to re-engage.

My sponsee may not have another chance at recovery, but if you’re reading this and are still engaging in some type of addiction that’s robbing your life of any type of joy, you still have a chance. Don’t give up. I surely haven’t, even though I’ve gone through so much and endured incredible amounts of pain through it all. As Elton John once said, “I’m still standing” and with some recovery work, so can you.

Peace, love, light, and joy,
Andrew Arthur Dawson

Silly Joke Friday

Silly Joke #1

So this reporter checks in at some old hotel smack in middle of nowhere. Coming into the lobby, he is confronted with the strange sight of an old Indian, whittling stick, long black hair, reddish skin, sitting on one of the chairs as if he intends never to get up.”That’s Old Chief Forget-Me-Not,” whispers the man behind the desk reverently, “he is allowed to stay here for free because he let me build my hotel on his reservation.” “Why the weird name?” whispers the reporter. “Old Chief NEVER forgets anything that happened to him since he was a very young kid. Now he is 102. Fantastic memory.” Once the reporter has checked in, he decides to check out old Forget-Me-Not. “Hey Chief!” he calls, “What’d you have for breakfast on the morning of your 21st birthday?” “Eggs,” replies the Chief without even looking up. The reporter is so amazed, he jumps in his car and drives at least two hours over to where his other reporter friend is staying. Once telling the story over, both reporters jump in the car and drive right back two hours to the hotel, smelling a big scoop. On the way, the second reporter tells the first: “Why don’t you address the Chief more respectfully, so he’ll demonstrate to us more?” Following his friend’s advice, the first reporter greets the Chief with a resounding “HOW!!” “Scrambled,” replies the Chief.

Silly Joke #2

When a woman in my office became engaged, a colleague offered her some advice. “The first seven years are the hardest,” she said.”How long have you been married?” I asked. “Seven years,” she replied.

Silly Joke #3

The following was a true ad in the Atlanta Journal: “Single Black Female seeks male companionship, ethnicity unimportant. I am a very good-looking girl who loves to play. I love long walks in the woods, riding in your pickup truck, hunting, camping, and fishing trips, cozy winter nights lying by the fire. Candlelight dinners will have me eating out of your hand. Rub me the right way and watch me respond. I’ll be at the front door when you get home from work, wearing only what nature gave me. Kiss me and I’m yours. Call xxx-xxx-xxxx and ask for Daisy.”Over 15,000 men were reported to have called and found themselves talking to the local Humane Society about an eight week-old black Labrador retriever.

Bonus Silly Joke

A man walks in his room after work and is surprised to find his wife lying naked on the bed. After careful examination he spies a pair of bare feet sticking out from underneath the curtains. He rips open the blinds to find a naked man standing there.’Who the hell are you?’ he yells. The naked guy replies ‘I’m the moth inspector’ ‘Oh yeah! what are you doing naked?’ He looks down and exclaims ‘Oh my god! I’m too late!’

Peace, love, light, and joy,
Andrew Arthur Dawson

Thought For The Day

Quote #1

“It’s easy to look at people and make quick judgments about them, their present and their past, but you’d be amazed at the pain and tears a single smile hides. What a person shows the world is only one tiny facet of the iceberg hidden from sight. And more often than not, it’s lined with cracks and scars, that go all the way to the foundation of their soul.” (Unknown)

Quote #2

“Sometimes the nicest people you meet are covered in tattoos and sometimes the most judgmental people you meet go to church on Sundays.” (Earl Dibbles Jr.)

Quote #3

“You never really understand a person until you consider things from their point of view…until you climb inside their skin and walk around in it.” (Harper Lee)

Bonus Quote

“Please don’t judge people. You don’t know what it took someone to get out of bed, to look and feel as presentable as possible, and face the day. You never truly know the daily struggles of anyone until you’ve gotten to know a lot more of the story by reading all of its pages.” (Andrew Arthur Dawson)

Peace, love, light, and joy,
Andrew Arthur Dawson