marilea.rabasa@gmail.com

LOVE: Let. Others. Voluntarily. Evolve

  “The beginning of love is to let those we love be perfectly themselves, and not to twist them to fit our image. Otherwise we love only the reflection of ourselves we find in them.” ~Thomas Merton, No Man Is an Island My sponsor often tells me that whatever I decide to do in my relationships with people, let it come—not out of anger or spite, jealousy or resentment—but out of love. And if I truly love someone, I need to just let them be. This is VERY hard when a loved one is addicted. But I don’t have the power to change other people or their choices. When I make the effort to let go, things usually turn out...

“Keep It Simple”

One of my favorite sayings. Simplify. Makes my life much easier to manage when I clear out the unnecessary stuff. I try to focus on essentials. Everyone has a different set of them, but mine are important to me. What is necessary for my well-being every day? Food, exercise, rest, some human contact, some kind of work—in an office, in the garden, on my computer, shopping, cleaning. If I start to feel overwhelmed, then I’m doing too much. Back to basics. Simplify. And the world will keep...

The Gift Of Faith

“It wasn’t until I was tested as her mother that I found my ability to harness any faith at all. My sadness as a child paled before my growing despair as an adult child. The journey I’m on now has given me fresh new insights as I’ve confronted myself and understood where I have come from. My journey has in turn helped me understand where I have taken my own family. What was given to me has been passed down to my children. Yet I understand now that I could not have turned out differently, nor could I have been a different parent. My behavior as an adult was scripted from my childhood. What I need now is faith in something outside of myself to help me carry the burden—and gratitude that I’m finally able to ask for help. My faith has everything to do with turning over my self-will and accepting the will of another. I have found peace and serenity in acceptance of life as it is happening every day. Letting go and handing over the reins has given me the freedom to live my own life now without feeling shackled to the past or frightened of the future.” Excerpt from my award-winning memoir, A Mother’s Story: Angie Doesn’t Live Here Anymore, by Maggie C. Romero...

A Quiet Mind

From Courage to Change, September 4: “As we let go of obsession, worry, and focusing on everyone but ourselves, many of us were bewildered by the increasing calmness of our minds. We knew how to live in a state of crisis, but it often took a bit of adjustment to become comfortable with stillness. The price of serenity was the quieting of the constant mental chatter that had taken up so much time; suddenly we had lots of times on our hands and we wondered how to fill it.” Over time, I’ve learned how to “be still in the stream.” It took a long time for me to accept my powerlessness. But obsessing over Angie and living in all her drama was threatening my health. I was suffering from severe PTSD and endured many other negative consequences in my life as a result of my constant worry over something I couldn’t control. So, I took the first three steps in my recovery program. It was hard to do that because I felt that letting go was giving up on my daughter. Not loving her anymore. But that’s not how I feel now. Once, not so long ago, Angie was a loving daughter to me, a college graduate with her whole life ahead of her. Then, like the great cosmic crapshoot that afflicts millions of families, she fell out of her life and into addiction. She’s been lost to us all for a long time now. But my daughter Angie, not the addict that lives in her body, would want me to reclaim my life as I have, and learn...

There Are Many Paths To Spirituality

From Each Day A New Beginning, November 28: “’The idea of God is different in every person.  The joy of my recovery was to find God within me.’ ~Angela Wozniak Coming to believe in a greater power brings such relief to us in our daily struggles. And on occasion we still fight for control to be all-powerful ourselves, only to realize that the barriers we confront are of our own making…The program’s greatest gift to us is relief from anxiety, the anxiety that so often turned us to booze, or pills, or candy. Relief is felt every time we let go of the problem that’s entrapped us and wait for the comfort and guidance God guarantees.”     My program of recovery is not based on any organized religion. I was raised in a church, but my concept of God was childlike—a vision of Santa Claus to give me what I asked for. I lacked the maturity and discipline it takes to develop faith and hold on to it. When I started to read the literature and use the tools available, I entered into uncharted territory where I was asked to let go of my grip on circumstances and allow someone else to take over. Many people think of “God” as that other force, but just as many others focus on nature or the recovery fellowship found at meetings. The point is, my isolation is over and I am now partnering with a Being who is all-loving and all-powerful. I have learned to surrender to His will and put my faith in Him. This is the spirituality I speak...

Life Is For The Living; Live It Well!

    From Courage to Change, March 23: “They say that pain is inevitable but suffering is optional. If I learn to accept that pain is part of life, I will be better able to endure the difficult times and then move on, leaving the pain behind me.” ‘When we long for life without…difficulties, remind us that oaks grow strong in contrary winds and diamonds are made under pressure.’ ~Peter Marshall   There is no life without difficulty. But my recovery program has given me the tools to embrace the challenges I face with grace under pressure. Acceptance of what is. Joy in the simple things. Gratitude for all I have. When I steer my attitude in a positive direction, life is good. Let your brilliance shine like diamonds in 2018. Best wishes to my friends and family. God Bless Us, Every One!...