SafeTrip4 – Day 5


I forgot to set up my wakeup call and my alarm so I got to Sleep in a bit. got up a bit after six. I was a bit late for a call with a sponsee that was supposed to happen at six, but he was very forgiving about it. we talked while I ironed my shirt then I got out of the hotel for my morning walk, then I had a call with another sponsee. I love talking to my sponsees, carrying the message of recovery does keep me sober.

I got back to my room, showered and started packing as I needed to check out before I get to work. I got my luggage sorted then went down to have breakfast with my colleague before we both headed to our meeting in another hotel.

it was a day long training with some interesting segments and some “needs improvement” segments but overall it wasn’t a complete waste of time. the training was supposed to finish at 5 pm Singapore time and my SLAA Egypt Skype meeting was supposed to start the same time the training finishes. luckily I was able to reach out to the members and tell them that I will be a little late. also I was able to get access to the hotel WiFi.

after I got out of the training and said goodbye to most of my colleagues I went to the hotel lobby and started the Skype meeting. Thank goodness for the tower of Babylon no one understood what I was saying. so while I was still surrounded by a lot of people I still had privacy speaking in Arabic.

when I finished I went back to my original hotel where I used to stay, I had stored my luggage there. I was so sweaty and sticky so I sneaked into the hotel spa (which technically I should only access as a guest of the hotel) but never mind that. I got in there, took a fresh towel and had a nice shower and changed into fresh cloths. afterwards I went to drop my luggage at the apartment I will be staying at for my last night then headed to my friend’s house who was having a nice BBQ in the park. I had good food and good chat then I got back ‘home’. I said my prayers, put my cloths to wash and I am now typing this.

I would really like to remain awake till I put my cloths in the dryer but for all you know, I might collapse before the load finishes washing (20 more minutes to go)

 

Fast Reflections Day 19


Today marked the last day of the Bahai fast, the first fast that I had sober for the entire period. and probably one of the most major milestones in my recovery journey.

My last post was talking about the fabulous sleep I had the night before. looks like I jinxed it. I stayed a bit late that night (by a bit late I mean till 2 am) by the time I got to bed my daughter had wet her bed, I had to change the sheets and change her, then she eventually wanted to sleep in my bed. by five thirty both my kids were up because of whatever. the conclusion is I had 3 hours of sleep.

breakfast, then kids out of the house then working from home followed by a trip to the office in the afternoon and a relatively productive day despite my exhaustion. when I got home, my lovely wife offered that I go for a nap and I did, taking the little baby in my arms. I had a good 90 minutes of deep sleep.

I got up, broke the fast for the last time with my mom and my mom in law then I rushed to my office room to host the SLAA NZ Skype Meeting. so a lot of the guys are on a retreat in Taupo so I was thinking no one is going to show up to the meeting. the meeting started with 4 participants and half way through it a few of the fellows who were on the retreat got on the call. it was great. and everyone had a chance to share. I love the skype meeting.

I want to thank you all for keeping me company during this special time. I might post one more reflection tomorrow celebrating Nowruz but if not then I will post later about something else.

also tomorrow I don’t have to wake up before sunrise, so if the kids remain asleep I will be sleeping in. it is the weekend

 

Fast reflections day 11


another exhausting day. my 4-year-old wet his bed for the second night in a row. I woke up at 4 am to change sheets and wash him up. I am wondering if that is because of the new sister. my 2-year-old was also unsettled in her sleep so I pretty much had very little sleep and I am not a good person when I don’t get enough sleep.

while I was planning to work mornings only this week, my job allows me flexibility. I decided to push work aside to the afternoon and went with my mom in law to the hospital after we dropped the kids off at day care. we spent a bit of time with my wife and baby then went to run some errands. I got home to do some work and then took my mom to pick the kids up and go to the hospital so the kids can spend some time with their sister and mom.

when we got back from the hospital we spent a bit of time playing then showering the kids, feeding them dinner, hoping to put them to bed early. IT TOOK TWO HOURS! I am fasting, I am tired and really grumpy. I wasn’t the best farther. actually I was a terrible father. I snapped at the kids.

I am really tired AGAIN (I bet you are tired reading that I am tired). but well. I love that I get to sleep and have another day tomorrow

More reflections to come.

 

Fast Reflections day nine


so this week I am working half days only so work doesn’t pile up while I am looking after my family. so on Tuesday woke up early for breakfast before sunrise, started the day with the kids, did a bit of work from home till about midday then went to see my wife and baby, ran some errands, then back at the hospital for more time with my wife and baby then back home again to get the rest of the family to see the baby for the first time. by the time I got home it was about 5:30 pm. we don’t break the fast till 8 pm and the visiting hours are 6 to 8.

the “plan” was that the grandmothers (we have both of them visiting) will look after the kids, feed them early dinner so that we head to the hospital and the rest of the family gets to see the baby for the first time. while they feed the kids dinner I was hoping to take a quick nap as I was really tired and grumpy. then we get back round 8 so that mom and I can break the fast. of course that was MY PLAN. need I tell you it didn’t go according to MY WISHES?

Got home my daughter was crying to the top of her voice cause her brother hit her. calm my daughter down, talk to my son about what he did, give them both hugs and reassurances. I understand that they are both acting out because they miss their mom and probably impacted by the new arrival. when things settled I was hoping to get a power nap. went into a room, and twice my son stormed into the room just as I was about to drift away. long story short I am still tired and grumpier.

we went to the hospital. kids had fun patting and holding the baby but of course the grandmothers are exclaiming every other minute “watch out”, “not like this”, “careful the baby”. so I knew that will eventually be too much for the little ones to take so I took them to the visitors lounge along with their new puzzle that their mom and I bought on behalf of their little sister. we got some play time, while the two grandmas catch up with my wife and baby.

I got home just after eight, hungry and tired and the kids need to sleep. tried as much as possible to assist while my mom in law was looking after them, then got to eat a bit and I went again to attend to the kids as they were still up at 8:30. I got into the room with them, said prayers and told stories of their baby sister until they fell asleep.

I managed to brush my teeth and get into bed. I was really tired. I missed praying that day and I feel bad about it. the night wasn’t the best either. my son wet his bad so I had to wake up at 4 am, change sheets, wash him up and settle him back to sleep. then my daughter woke up a couple of times. SIGH

more reflections to come

Angry at my Son and I blame recovery


Here is another one of those eye openers I referred to in my previous post.

Most recently I have been having an increasingly difficult time with my kids’ bed time routine. My son takes forever to go to bed and the last few times I put him to sleep up until the point mentioned in this post I actually raised my voice and threatened of different types of punishment if he were not to stop fussing/tossing/talking or whatever else he does to stall and prolong the process. And I hated myself every time afterwards.

The time I want to mention here was a new low. And it wasn’t even night time, it was nap time. He was really tired and he really needed to nap. Or more like I needed him to nap so that he is well rested and we don’t spend the rest of the day with a grumpy child. We started fine and the pattern followed. This time I hit a new low. I got really upset with his tossing and the subject this time was that the cover wasn’t adjusted properly. I got so angry I snatched the cover while yelling “stop this” and as I placed the cover after snatching it, it hit his face. I had no intention of hitting him, and this is the first time I ever did such thing. Even though the intention wasn’t to hit and the cover hitting his face was accidental and wasn’t too painful, it was a shock to him. And more importantly a shock to me. What happened to me?

Let’s take a few steps back. As a young man, I thought parents around me sucked big time. I arrogantly wanted to have children to show the world how it is done. I knew I was going to be the “perfect” parent. As if such thing existed. I did eventually realize that I am not a perfect parent and that parenting is harder than what I thought it would be. That being said I still pride myself on how I kept my cool. I was always calm and thoughtful about my parenting decisions in the most stressful situations. I could face hours and hours of grumpiness and constant crying but still stay “Zen”. I was the parent described in the book “Scream Free Parenting”. I also made my wife feel terrible about herself as a mother for snapping at the kids. Questioning her ability to mother if she couldn’t keep it together. That was the case before recovery. And so that you know, my wife is on my step 4 resentment list for snapping at the kids.

Now back to the day mentioned earlier. I was feeling miserable the rest of the day. My wife asked me “what’s wrong?” I told her that I hit our son and shared what happened. She gave me a hug and said “I relate.” We chatted about it further and as we were discussing she asked me “could this have anything to do with your recovery? Cause I never saw you so angry!” It got me thinking. Then she added “as crazy as it sounds, it makes you more human. It always amazed me how you never snapped at them”

She was right, and I know the reason why I was so calm with the kids. I was under the influence. I was high on acting out. I had the “perfect” way to process such overwhelming emotions. Now that I am sober I am faced with the real beast within me. My character defects that need to be removed rather than be sexually medicated. I found myself tearing and saying sorry to my wife. When she asked what for, I replied “a whole lot of stuff”. this is not my amends making but this experience will contribute to my amends making process.

As for my son. I have been attempting things differently. I start bed time routine by explaining that I understand he doesn’t want to sleep. Or that he finds it difficult to sleep. I tell him about things that he found once frustrated and now he masters. I tell him that it is okay he finds falling asleep difficult and that he will need to learn to fall asleep. Whenever he fusses and provokes me to get the pattern started I remind him that “dad will not yell at you tonight” and that I will support him to help him fall asleep. It is been only a couple of days but I feel like my relationship with my son is going in a slightly more positive direction than the one it was headed towards prior to this realization.