Friday, December 30, 2016

New Years.... resolutions?

I feel like this time of year is all about a revamping - new diet, new routine, hoping to be more fitness oriented, family relationships become priority, etc. I honestly don't want a revamping rather a refocus,  not on what is lost but what has been found. I honestly can say I lost myself and found myself all very quickly, there are parts I wish I could go back and change and aspects that are still all too cringeworthy but I can't say I would change it or take it back. Like I said I found myself, through all the pain, tears and almost unbearable heartbreak I found out how strong I am, and I found out Who gives me the strength.
With this refocus I want to just continue on my path in this mortality to become closer to God and my Savior. All the goals I listed above are great but also shallow, the depth of all those goals and the power to achieve them is from our Heavenly Father and by His Grace and His will we will achieve all.
 I have only one resolution that can consume all others- intention. I plan to set my intention each day, each week, each month, with Brian, with family, with friends, etc. with every new day and every conversation I want my intention to shine through. As long as my intention is in God's will and allows me to grow, is set with passion and will result in abundance I feel as though my minutes, days, and whole year will be blessed and filled with happiness.

Sunday, November 27, 2016

Staying grounded

I have come across myself thinking sometimes, ok now I don't need meetings anymore, or do I really need to stay in contact with people in recovery? These questions get answered very quickly and I am humbled by the way they come because usually it's in the form of the disease of addiction taking someone back down to rock bottom.
Once this question was answered by my counselor when someone had said they were losing touch with recovery, hadn't been to a meeting a few weeks, they didn't have a sponsor, hadn't touched their step work in at least a month. He replied back to them, when are you going to relapse? I was taken back, those statements of their current position with recovery didn't mean they had relapsed but just not doing what I would considering maintaining, right? Well if we aren't progressing we are regressing as that saying goes, and low and behold the same person comes back two weeks later relapsed and completely lost and hopeless. What a shocker to me, but really should it come as a shock that if we aren't being spiritually fed we will lose that divine assistance from our God that keeps us serene and sober?
The newcomer they say is the most important person in the room, self importance may tell me differently sometimes ;) just kidding. But for me I now see why the new comer benefits me. They are the ones who fill the seat I used to. They are so yearning for a new life and a softer way. They are so sick of being sick and look for true joy. If only I could for a second beam to their soul what I feel today. Just to hang on and hope and love and peace all come. Sometimes slow but when it comes it hits hard and they will feel so much better. Life will have meaning and happiness will come without any worldly assistance. Deep down we learn who we really are and that person is amazing and worth living addiction free for. I am so grateful for this freedom and for what God does for me everyday.

Wednesday, November 2, 2016

Normal life.

Bri and I were discussing some issues we were having separately that were very worldly and superficial, yet simple and easy. They are hardships of normal people, problems that have simple solutions and almost zero depth. I was especially distraught about what I thought was a "problem", and Bri gave me a hug and he asked, "isn't it great though that that is your biggest problem right now?" It made me think of how different my life is now, free from addictive chains and the chaos it creates.  Normal life is all I ever would have wished for in active addiction. I tried to will away so many ups and downs that caused my soul pain and anguish yet I was entrapped and literally felt like the world was collapsing around me.
Normal life wasn't achieved overnight and I still feel like my life and experiences are so different having gone through such a hardship, I look at the world differently and I see people in a whole new light. Some may call such a vision change "rose colored glasses". I call it recovery! I see the hand of my God working in my life showing me the world in a much brighter, better, and beautiful place in which all of us as His sons and daughters get the experience to dwell and find joy.
I definitely believe everything happens for a reason and we all get dealt a different hand in order to learn and grow to become our best version and a vessel to help others along the way become their best version. For today I am grateful for normal problems and normal life, a chance to focus on building spiritual depth and "recovery  insurance" as my counselor would say, because as we all know life will eventually happen; my perception and outlook is key to continually have joy regardless of my circumstances.

Friday, October 14, 2016


I attended a very inspirational fireside meeting last night which focused on Our Savior Jesus Christ. The thought kept crossing my mind as several women were speaking about focusing their lives for the last several months they have had a mighty change in their lives, in which they are now striving daily to follow the Savior's great example, but the thought was how will they maintain this. One lady spoke about how at first she was so engrossed in Christ's gospel that several hours were dedicated to this study, and now she has found a routine in which it's not as long now but definitely just as meanilingful.  I think that the key to preserving such "a mighty change" in which we all embark on when we first enter recovery or first gain such divine knowledge of our Creator's love for us is to have sincere and significant study or devotion to that incredible feeling or touch from the spirit. I think that for everyone this is achieved differently and very personally but it has to be found and acted upon. This will inturn allow us to MAINTAIN or better yet gain!
For me I have found that routine is key, everyday I try to do the same thing every morning and every night. Before I hit my feet in the morning I say a prayer that is full of gratitude, giving me several very tangible reasons to get up and be positive. I then read something uplifting, depending on the day and if my baby wakes up before me this is either 30 minutes or 2 minutes. Either way I gain some sort of inspiration to be better, think better, and focus on what is important in the big scheme of things. Especially in using days but even before I would find every excuse to stay in bed or to get 10 extra minutes of sleep, I have learned through habit and practice getting up when I wake up and filling myself with the Spirit and light of Christ is exponentially more important and allows me to find utter joy regardless of what my day transpires. At night the process is very similar involving getting into bed and reading my scriptures, not just to hurry and finish a chapter but to truly gain the knowledge and meaning it has for me in my life at this time. Following with a prayer with Brian and my own personal prayer which I set this prayer aside for communication with my Father in heaven which I just allow myself to talk to Him as if he were sitting right by me and telling Him of my fears, strengths I would like to find ways to use and also asking for genuine help for things I find myself needing divine assistance with. I personally am an insomniac so not only does this routine train my brain to slow down and sleep but that once again spiritual connection is reastablished and I feel His all loving, never changing love in my soul.
There are days harder than others and it was said in a meeting once that the more recovery and spiritual based reading that is dedicated the better those days go. Therefore on harder days I refocus and dedicate more time to such reading, reaching out and personal prayer.
I am so grateful that I have such an amazing testimony of my Savior's love for me and that I know His atonement and gospel are available to me to continually become a better person, friend, wife, mother, and member of society. With a Christ centered life there are no dark abysses that are to dismal, no faint heart that is too feable,  and no sin that is too unforgivable for His MATCHLESS love.

Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Service- step 12

Service is the single most effective way to cure any emotion that is bringing our spiritual self down. Step 12 is the last and single most important step in my opinion. I recently read a book about a lady who had a near death experience, while on the other side she encountered all the times she was able and willing to help those around her including her family, friends, and most importantly the least amoung her. When we are in service of our fellows we are in the service of our God. Her main point of the book was when she awoke in the hospital she came to the realization that we are placed on this earth to help others in turn blessing our lives. She made it very clear that doing the next right thing to those in society not just those we love is true discipleship to our Savior and Heavenly Father.
 I have loved the awakening I have had to the true meaning of service because before I always pictured it as going out to rake others leaves, donate to the food bank, or waiting till Christmas to donate presents. While those are indeed service I have found that it is and can be so much more. It is how the 12th step phrases it "practice these principles in all your affairs." ALL of my affairs, this includes word, deed, and thought. I can serve others simply in my heart and thoughts, how amazing is that? I can pray for others and catch myself when I am slipping into a place where I feel I am judging or ridiculing others in my thoughts. Service is having charity, loving others just as they are, being positive and uplifting regardless of how they feel about me. Service and truly practicing the 12 step principles is all around just being a better person, placing myself in a position spiritually to not only be better for me but allow others to be themselves and uplift them.
I am grateful everyday that I don't have to be the judge, that I get to strive to instead follow the single greatest commandment, to love others (everyone) as my Savior and Heavenly Father love me.

Sunday, September 25, 2016


Through experiences I have had, I have found that having gratitude outwardly is so important. But even more importantly to me I feel like a grateful heart changes a person. It's changed me, I want nothing more than to be a grateful person day in day out. A grateful person is easy to be around because they are kind and gentle, they don't put you down or make you feel inferior, rather they build you up and allow you to be your best self.  A grateful person can go without a lot, I have found that I can go with very little and still be very happy and thankful for what I do have. A grateful person is someone others want to be around because being grateful in-turn allows a person to be humble, happy, patient, not easily provoked and respectful. 
I have been humbled and also humbled myself through my addiction to get to the place I am. I know that life is hard and sometimes all that makes sense in the world is to turn away from gratitude especially when things don't seem fair. I know without a doubt that everything happens for a reason, and as cliche as it sounds everything happens to teach us a lesson. Cliche or not we do learn from hard things, but it's up to us on whether we decide to have it be a lesson to strengthen us and make us better people or a lesson on how to resent others, build walls around us, develop a stony heart or even worse have ignorance and be thankless. 
"Hard times are often blessings in disguise. Let go and let life strengthen you. No matter how much it hurts, hold your head up and keep going. This is an important lesson to remember when you’re having a rough day, a bad month, or a crappy year. Truth be told, sometimes the hardest lessons to learn are the ones your spirit needs most. Your past was never a mistake if you learned from it. So take all the crazy experiences and lessons and place them in a box labeled “Thank You.”   — Manisha Shrestha  Bundela
 I think gratitude is one thing we get to give back to our Heavenly Father and Savior who have done EVERYTHING for us.  I have such a strong testimony of the meaning of a broken heart being what we strive for. My gratitude for my Saviors Atoning sacrifice for me is amazing, and it is so deep that I get a very indescribable feeling of intense gratitude when I truly ponder Him suffering for every one of my sins and feeling every depth of despair I have felt.  With that in the forefront of our minds how can we not have a box that says "Thank You" and place every hardship in it?  It is overwhelming to think of how much more grateful I can and should be yet then I remember how grateful I am for His grace allowing me to continue to be imperfect and allowing me to continue striving to be the best possible version of me. 
Today I am grateful to be an addict and that I have gone through the depths of my own hell to be able to know the true joy of feeling my Saviors love for me.  I also know that I can go on in life with very little but there are a few people I wouldn't know what to do without, and I am so grateful to call them mine, my sweet husband and my amazing babe Meiken! ❤️️

Wednesday, August 3, 2016


In active addiction I like to think of it as a tornado. We create a such horrific damage and chaos along the way in relationships, self worth, serenity of the soul, ect. We Hurt a lot of people especially those closest to us. We burn bridges, lose trust, deceive people we care for, and break hearts. For me I know that I also hurt myself, I damaged my spirit and left myself broke. All of this is our own doing and there comes a time in recovery that "a boy becomes a man" and we get the opportunity to make a huge choice to take responsibility for the wreckage of our self created storm. When compared to a tornado there is a calm after the storm. A time in our recovery where we can acknowledge we are still breathing, those who love us still do, and that ultimately we are ok. But like a tornado it may be calm but the debris, rubble and devastation still surrounds us. Any disaster recovery group would probably tell you this is when the heartache and healing collide to move forward. Like a tornado recovering from addiction takes hard work and dedication. This is where restitution comes into create a new world of being right with God, yourself and society. There is a line between justice and mercy one without the other doesnt make sense. When we make restitution in whatever form we have to know that this is the justice part, I am learning that I have to own my part and accept consequences no matter how dire they may seem because as a result comes mercy. I have tiny glimpses of how much my Heavenly Father and Savior love me, I have hope and faith that when I resolve my wrong doing I am able to heal my broken spirit. In the grand scheme of things and eternal perspective all my very trying times and depths of hell will make sense but for now I get to have fear and faith collide to give me courage to face whatever comes my way. I love the saying "hold on till the miracle happens".
I am so grateful for such an amazing support system especially my husband because mircles wouldn't he happening as they are and I'm going to continue to hold on.

Sunday, July 24, 2016

Step 4- Truth

Make a searching and fearless written moral inventory of yourself.
This step for me came at a time when I was on a spiritual and recovery high, I wanted to do everything exactly right and perfect, basically just get it right. My couselor gave me a very detailed packet of questions that trigger memory to be detailed and thorough about every action, thought and behavior that can weigh us down from out past.  As this stage of my recovery was difficult and painful it was relieving. I made up my mind that I would be 100% honest and that in step five I would relieve myself of the baggage I was carrying around and read this detailed information to my sponsor. But I also decided that she was the only person I would share this information with. 
This dishonest by omission from everyone in my support system was detrimental to my recovery. As I see this step as a very private part of recovery and only to be shared with a trusted support person and priesthood authority, I also see how being transparent and rigorously honest can only help me. It took me seven months in recovery to see how diminished pride and full trust in my support is an anchor to sobriety. I have put everything on the table and anytime I'm questioned or inquired about my past I am able to be honest. Addiction created a bad habit of lying and deceit, which put that as a forefront of my character. Telling the truth wasn't second nature anymore and I hated that about myself. But with practice and patience with myself I am able to be honest true and humble enough to those I love and those trying to help me to tell the truth and not hide from my true emotions rather break down my shell and be free. This step comes full circle in step ten where when we are wrong we promptly admit it. I have a strong testimony of the freeing power of that and how much secrets, lies and pride are all ways the adversary uses to weigh us down and keep us chained to very sorrowful life. 

Sunday, July 17, 2016


In my life I have always needed to fill a void or succeed in some way. I did this in high school by playing sports, after in college it was earning a bachelor's degree, then running half marathons and one marathon, then it was crossfit, the list goes on. These things I put my heart and soul into and focused almost all of my attention. After I had meiken my gears shifted from me to her and my little family. How to be the best mom, the best wife, do it all. I obviously fell short without some other outlet to succeed I found a way to lose the disheartening fact that I am not the best or not living up to the standards I had set prior to becoming a mother. It was drugs, they altered my mind to be ok and not feel defeated in some ways they gave me confidence that my failures were ok and life is just life. After getting into recovery I asked my counselor why I seem to not be able to just be ok and not always feel like there is a finish line and feeling like there is a part of me that will never be fulfilled. He very simply told me that discontent after stopping using can only be filled by a spiritual connection. 
Crazy that it can be that simple. But it's so true, life is hard and we don't get a free pass to not have disappointments or hardships. Without struggle and humility we will never be strong and gracious. I know this void was always pseudo filled with external factors but now my life is different and I'm different.  Sure I still exercise and educate myself but that void is so readily and easily filled by my spiritual connection with my Heavenly Father and Savior. By allowing my life to be filled with his light it is in turn filling the void of despair, hardship, failure, and unmet expectations. I will never be perfect and I will never meet all of the standards life seems to have for me. Does this mean I stop setting goals or stop expecting greatness, of course not. But I have developed a certain grace for myself that is ok to not be the perfect wife, mother, friend, sister, or daughter of God. But I am the best mom for Meiken, the best wife for Bri, the best friend for many, and most importantly the best daughter of God for my Heavenly Father. He will always cheer for me to be my best and understand when I'm not. 
I am grateful for this trial in my life and all the unexpected turns it has taken me because I have learned what the Atonement of Jesus Christ means for me and found an everlasting way till rid myself of discontent if I allow myself to seek it out. 

Sunday, July 10, 2016

Trust in God

Step 3- Decide to turn your will and life over to the care of God the Eternal Father and in His Son, Jesus Christ.
I love the first three steps I heard in a meeting once that the first three steps can be simplified to -I can't- He will- and finally I will let Him. I think that is a way of crying out for peace. Living a completely insane life and knowing that the only way to serenity and that long awaited peace is by surrendering the fight and relying on His grace. GRACE- that is what this step is all about, to live in His will is a huge decision and seems impossible until we grasp the fact that it's not about our strength and will power it's about trying our best and having faith He will make up the difference.
An overwhelming answer to a prayer came when I was working this step throughly again a few months ago. I was reading the Book of Mormon for the pure intent of understanding the Atonement more throughly. I was wrapped up on words and trying to understand the history and story line. I prayed and asked for the strength to live more righteously. I then read a conference talk and Jeffrey R. Holland plainly said we get credit for trying. That was my answer, I don't need to understand the Book of Mormon perfectly and I don't need to be prefect but I do need to TRY!
I don't know God's will exactly but I do know I can try everyday to use the atonement and follow my Savior's example of love kindest and meakness.
I have heard several times now that we all have to experience our own Gethsemane, that we will hurt and suffer and will feel overwhelming pain. This addiction and the whirlwind of destruction has been my Gethsemane. The pain I have felt and the hell I've walked through has been the worst of my life. Now that I have had time and so many tender mercies an AA saying rings true "share your pain". It may only help me to share in meetings of where I've been and how I'm becoming a better person now. Or this blog of writing down my weakness and strengths. It might be for me to be able to reflect back on in hard times or God's will in mind help someone feel even an ounce less pain that I've felt through all of my hardships or give hope that the pain can lessened and learned from.
I know this step is a decision that has to be made daily and I am grateful I have a loving Heavenly Father who has a plan for me to be happy and be of service to others through the amazing gift of my Savior's atonement.

Monday, June 6, 2016


Come to believe that the power of God can restore you to complete spiritual health.
The first LDS addiction recovery meeting Brian and I attended together was on step 2, HOPE. It honestly was a make or break point for me and Bri's marriage. We were at the lowest of lows and literally had no where to turn. I asked him to go with me to the meeting and it was an answer to both of our prayers that it was on step 2. There is a part of the reading that says when we first attend the meetings we looked around at others laughing and talking and wondered how we would ever get to that place in our lives again. It was true we both sat there hopeless and broken. After the meeting we were filled with the love of our Heavenly Father and saw the grace of our Savior touching our lives. This was a huge tender mercy and sometimes recovery comes quickly and sometimes it comes slowly but all I know is that it was the first step to a quick recovery for us. Last night the meeting we attended was on step 2 and when Bri shared I cried and my heart was bursting for my love for him. He shared about how quickly we were able to lean on each other and turn to the Lord for peace and comfort in such a difficult time. He also said how he is so grateful that we are able to laugh and talk with others in recovery now and it is all because of those meetings and our ability at that time to turn to the Lord and ask for His guidance. I'll be forever grateful for this program and for the Book of Mormon for promping us to always to turn to our loving Heavenly Father to return peace and spiritual health back to our lives.
One huge part of hope for me was mentioned by a man last night saying that a lot of his hope came from his spouse supporting him through his recovery. That hit me like a ton of bricks and I was so grateful he said that because it helped me realize how much that has helped me have faith to preserve through the hardest time of my life. Without Brian's love and support I wouldn't have been able to reach the spirituality, hope, and faith I have now. He has such a strong testimony and isn't afraid to share it and has also been instrumental in helping me strengthen mine. He has cried with me, prayed with me, studied with me, and just allowed me to change myself, all the while loving me unconditionally.
This step 2 has a special place in my heart because it was the turning point for me and Brian to let go of fear and doubt of the future and regret and guilt from the past and realize what we have is now, and that we wanted nothing else but our eternal family and we will forever fight for us.

Friday, June 3, 2016

How I got here...

Last night I attended a meeting I go to every week. The facilitator that night mentioned we focus on how we got here. I think there are several reasons people admit to being powerless over their addiction, reasons that for a while are truly justifiable, legal, in control. I became addicted by a prescription to pain medication following the birth of my baby. I was diagnosed with post partum depression and the anxiety, fear and completely awful feelings overcame me. I felt like I honestly couldn't get out of bed most days and when I would it was only to care for my baby. A whole false reality was built up in my head and somewhere deep down I knew I needed outside help but my pride that was from deceit from the adversary told me I could handle it on my own. However despite this false reality I now was living the only thing I found at that time to feel those crazy thoughts dissappear was prescription drugs. I would take the medication and in a half hour I had energy, temporary sanity, will to carry on for a few hours. With Complete honesty I was a good mom to my baby, I lover her so much and cared about nothing else but her. I hid my depression for a while but the thoughts my head came up with were beginning to scare me. I am grateful I never had thoughts of harming my baby but who's to say that it wouldn't have come to that point. I have a counselor that I can honestly say was a huge part of saving my life and helping me come to the happiness I feel today. He always says we're only as sick as the secrets we keep. I look back on my experience and wonder why I felt like depression was such a dirty secret (also how I feel about addiction now). I could have seeked medical treatment sooner, avoided consequences from addiction that I am still facing. Coulda shoulda woulda right? I did get a few prescriptions for antidepressants but they took a while to kick in and weren't as quick of a fix as the mid altering medications I had at my disposal.
Today I don't feel depressed the post partum depression ceased and I am grateful I don't feel like that on a day to day basis. However I have several people in my life that have depression chronically and I have seen those who have continued on antidepressants and live full happy lives, of course not everyday is easy and full of roses and lollipops, but at least they get to chose to be happy. My honest belief is that when stuck in depression there is no choice of happiness, everyday is a struggle of powerlessness over the depression and utter despair. This is why I have seen a huge change in those around me who are treated for depression and also why I see those who suffer everyday. Because there is no cure and no means of going untreated (medically or spiritually) that a human can endure happily. 
I honestly think I have depressing days, days where I don't want to get out of bed, don't want to exercise, eat healthy, do chores ect. I have been brought to an understanding that there can be those depressing days and somewhere in our lives there is a void. A void that can only be filled my our loving Heavenly Father. Our Savior felt those awful feelings of despair, entrapment, flaxen cords, He felt the world closing in on Him and knows every thought, fear, and doubt we experience. That is why that void can be filled, it doesn't happen easy or fast everyone but that is why we are here, to endure the hard times. Perseverance is a habit and something we work hard at everyday but with our Savior and Heavenly Father our burdens our lifted and we can be comforted. He loves us and wants us to be happy.
I am grateful everyday I can fill my void because of His Atoning sacrifice.

Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Step 1- Honesty

Step 1- honesty, admit that you, of yourself, are powerless to overcome your addictions and that your life has become unmanageable.

When I first entered recovery I found this step to be defeating and for a weak person who wants to place blame for their behavior and weaknesses. I felt like I had a problem but I could control it. However that was far from the truth I had a marriage that was beyond strained, family relations that were hardened and shallow, friendships that we fading because I was falling apart. Step one was a chance to look at my past and say wow unmanageable is hard. My addiction doesn't just affect me or Brian, it affects a whole network of people in one way or another, hurt feelings, deceit, loss of trust, ect. I went through a treatment program for 28 days and once completed I felt confident and powerful, I knew I was done and I knew I had changed my ways. The key word to how I felt that set me up to fail again and relapse was powerful. If I don't work step one and admit every day that I am an addict and I can't use drugs successfully then I am basically saying I'm going to relapse. I don't have it, the saying "I've got this" doesn't apply to my recovery. I am a strong faithful daughter of my Heavenly Father and I am forever grateful for the Atoning sacrifice of my Savior. Because of Him I know I can admit defeat and admit to myself and Him that I can't do recovery alone. Being powerless is the first step to allow Heavenly Father to empower us! My life was unmanageable but today I feel as if I am living proof of promises of following His example and working these 12 steps that things will begin to work out in my favor and living in His will I will ultimately be blessed exactly how I need to be. Today I am happy, I have a very cringeworthy rock bottom to be able to reflect on and remember that if I use drugs I will wind up there again one way or another. Working step one means I am trying everyday one day at a time to not become unmanageable and to hold dear those things in my life that I almost lost, my amazing beautiful daughter Meiken and my husband Brian. I could have lost such an amazing life but ultimately I could have lost me. The LDS addiction recovery program has allowed me to find ME again and recover a person who is happy and loving to everyone. This program has brought so many miracles and tender mercies to my life and those around me. This is a program of honesty and through my Savior I have strength to be honest and turn my back on a chaotic life of misery and dishonesty that led me to complete unhappiness and despair.
My name is Lizzy and I am an addict in recovery.

Love always,
Recovery Lizzy\