My Angel

Gratitude List 31/10/2018

13 years ago today my mum passed away. She was an absolute diamond, incredibly kind and completely loving. Although I occasionally put her through the wringer, all in all, I believe we shared a special relationship.

My mum’s ‘anniversary’ has come and gone over the years and in all honesty they done so without me thinking too much about her. Yes, life goes on and I don’t want to isolate myself and be sad all day, but that’s not my excuse. My excuse is, whilst suffering from my illness, I was emotionally numb, even towards grief and pain. I wasn’t completely neglect of feelings and I did shed some tears, but I know in my heart something wasn’t quite right. I’m not even sure I’ve grieved properly.

The last couple of years have been completely different though. Through doing recovery work I have become open to all types of emotions. Not in a fragile way, but in a normal way – a normal way of thinking and living.

Today I am grateful I am thinking of my mum right now.

And that I miss her dearly. Sorely.

That in my next breath, the thought of her brought a huge smile to my face

That I can still picture her face, hear her voice and feel her love.

I am grateful for the years we had together and the memories we created.

For her direction, guidance, support and understanding. Only now am I fully appreciating how much she did.

I am grateful for how connected I feel to her. I’m not exaggerating when I say I can feel her warmth and love. She is one of my higher powers.

I am grateful I have a few special places I can go to. Places that strengthen our connection even more.

I am grateful that I believe she is proud of what I am trying to do. I believe she has forgiven me.

I am grateful for still having my dad.

Grateful for the memory

My angel


Gratitude List 30/10/2018

Last night there was a lot of talk about honesty. Until last year I was rarely honest with myself or with others. It took me to learn how to be honest for me to realise how rare it was. I now practice being honest and I say practice, because it’s still not natural for me to be so. Although, it is slowly but surely becoming a habit.

Being honest with others causes less harm despite what fears my mind has concocted surrounding telling a truth. Being honest with myself is absolutely vital for my recovery. I cannot progress if I deny or ignore what’s really going on.

Holding a truth inside, sometimes deep inside, will eat away at me. It needs to be released. The rewards of being honest are spiritually, emotionally and physically good for me.

Today I am grateful for being shown how to be fearlessly honest. If it was down to me I would have just skimmed the top.

Today I am grateful for the magic of putting something down on paper. For me, it brings my thoughts to my own attention – an extra and vital step in being honest with myself.

Today I am grateful for all the revelations being honest with myself gives me. Each revelation is another tool in my toolbox ready to use in my daily life.

Today I am grateful for nightly and spot inventories that keep the self honesty levels up and the toolbox full.

Today I am grateful for the lack of harm I have caused others recently. Furthermore, the honesty is often met with appreciation.

Today I am grateful for the lack of inner turmoil of my stomach turning and the overworking washing machine in my head – all caused from the habit of lying and the fear of being truthful.

Today I am grateful for the humility I will gain as a result of being honest. For me, there’s nothing more humbling.

Today I am grateful for the vulnerability shown by others when being brutely honest. This inspires me and gives me the courage to do the same.

Grateful for the memory

London’S effort at Ice Hockey! 2017

My default gratitude

Gratitude List 29/10/2018

I’ve sat here with ‘ Gratitude List 29/10/2018’ on my screen for some time now. To be honest, I’m not sure what to write about. It’s not that I haven’t anything to be grateful for, as I have plenty. I just haven’t been in the right frame of mind. A lack of serenity for some reason.

Time for some mindful thinking and simple gratitude.

Today I am grateful for the air in my lungs.

Today I am grateful for the lack of harm and destruction I have caused today.

Today I am grateful for the sun, its light, its warmth, its awe, its power, its reminder of what and where I am.

Today I am grateful for my abilities.

Today I am grateful for my health. It could be better but it could definitely be worse.

Today I am grateful for my circumstances.

Today I am grateful for the health and happiness of the people I know and care for.

Today I am grateful for the nutrition from my food and water.

Today I am grateful for the shelter and security given to me by my home.

Today I am grateful for my warm clothing.

Today I am grateful for my freedom.

Today I am grateful for my sanity.

Today I grateful I have a choice.

Today I am grateful for my returning serenity.

Grateful for the message

WE’re only human

Gratitude List 28/10/2018

How I react to life’s challenges has dramatically changed. Which is handy as these challenges come at me on a daily basis. I’m surrounded by human beings so it shouldn’t come as a surprise. As much as ‘I’m only human’ can be a reason for my defects, it’s only right for me to reason in the same way when others show theirs. I can’t keep having one rule for me, one rule for another.

It’s not yet natural for me to show consideration to others and what they may be going through, but I am getting better. The only reason I’m getting better is because of the step work.

Today I am grateful:

– I took the time to learn what consideration actually meant and the morales behind it.

– I revealed to myself through the step work how inconsiderate I can be.

– I took this revelation as a positive, knowing I can use this understanding to be more considerate in the future.

– that disagreements do not progress in the wrong direction and instead they seem to resolve a lot quicker.

– that others aren’t harmed as a result of any resentment I have.

– that I am not harmed as a result of any resentment I have.

– that having this consideration can lead to serenity and the subsequent acceptance of others as they are.

– that having this consideration could lead to me asking for the courage to change the things I can.

– that I always try to consider what part I have played.

I like me!

Gratitude List 27/10/2018

Back in February 2017 I spoke, for probably the first time, with absolute honesty. I remember it clearly, how I felt, how desperate I was for change, how much I didn’t like who I was. Thankfully, this moment was the end of one life and the beginning of another. That same night I found a sponsor and began to work the recovery program.

A good friend often says… ‘Today I woke up and I like Niall.’ Today, I am grateful I too ‘woke up and like myself.’

I’m not perfect in any way shape or form and there will always be room for improvement, but today:

– I like who I am.

– I like who I’m trying to be.

– I like the way I think.

– I like the way I behave.

– I like the way I act.

– I like the way I love.

– I like the way I dress.

– I like the way I talk.

– I like how I treat people.

– I like the partner I have become.

– I like the father I have become.

– I like the partner I have become.

– I like the brother I have become.

– I like the friend I have become.

– I like the fellow I have become.

– I like the employee I have become.

– I like my morales.

– I like how serene I am.

– I like how happy I am.

– I like how hopeful I am.


Gratitude List 26/10/2018

Yesterday I bumped into someone I caused harm to several years ago. It’s not the first time our paths have crossed as we live fairly close to each other. Each time we do, I can see the hate in his eyes. Fair enough, the harm I caused was pretty horrendous. Within a second my mind was taken back to the horrible person I once was. Despite this wrenching my stomach, my reaction to bumping into each other has significantly changed.

Today I am grateful that my reaction to his resentment is not to resent in return.

Today I am grateful that because I wasn’t resentful, I didn’t suffer from hate, anger or self-pity.

Today I am grateful that I see his hate as a front for the pain that I have caused him. He suffers when he sees me and has done for many years. I feel for him.

Today I am grateful that I get to make amends to him soon. Its been a long time coming. He may not want to hear me but I’ll give it my best shot. I owe him that.

Today I am grateful I prayed for his happiness and serenity last night. I prayed that our paths crossing doesn’t ruin his time with his family.

Today I am grateful that I prayed in hope he will one day be able to forgive me. Not for selfish reasons, but because I know, through experience that it will ease his own suffering.

Today I am grateful I was able to share this story almost instantly and get it off my chest. This is an absolute blessing.

Today I am grateful for this complete reversal in the way I think. As a result I am more serene. With that serenity the chances of me taking further positive action has improved tenfold.

Grateful for the memory

Hiking through the Lake District, summer 2018

What gave what?

Gratitude List 25/10/2018

What my illness gave me:

Pain, harm, destruction, resentment, fear, denial, surpression, anger, hate, intolerance, expectation, projection, impatience, insanity, risk, harmful thoughts, dishonesty, ego, loss…..

What the fellowship gave me:

Togetherness, opportunities, resonation, friends, experience, vulnerability, confidence, knowledge, service, a place to go, people to call, the message, the recovery program, a sponsor…..

What working the recovery program with a sponsor has given me:

Hope, belief, faith, strength, sanity, serenity, humility, honesty, tolerance, patience, self-knowledge, self-esteem, self-worth, connection, prayer, meditation, mindfulness, spirituality, release, industriousness, freedom, safety, health, gratitude, simplicity, peace, acceptance, responsibility, security, maturity, courage, consideration, wisdom, happiness, love, joy, amends, better relationships, better work ethic, forgiveness, change, guidance, direction, purpose, trust, power, recovery, my mind, my soul, my life……

I wonder why I do what I do???


Grateful for the memory Buttermere, Lake District, UK, summer 2018