Two Years Sober: What I’ve learned

 

Hello Friends today is two years sober, I am filled with gratitude, love and purpose. Day one sober I was laying on a mattress in small apartment with nothing, only the want to be sober. I lost the love of my life and most of my friends. I was filled with self hate, guilt and shame. I knew with every cell in my body that the only way for me to rise from my rock bottom was to stay sober and find a recovery program. My addiction created a lot of chaos that was still alive and surfacing in my early days and months sober. All I had was my higher power and hope that one day I would be the Adolfo that the universe had attended. I saw no clear path because my mind, body and soul were still detoxing from the alcohol. All I did know was that alcohol took everything great from my life, and now I was saying goodbye to the only true friend I thought I had and that was the substance. Alcohol was my escape from my dark childhood, it was my confidant in my hard times and was there for me in my good times. Alcohol wanted to be the only thing in my life, and started taking everything away. After saying goodbye to alcohol two years ago I am now back with the love of my life. Just moved into a home in Venice Ca. Everything I lost because of my addiction I’ve gained back but even better than before. Alcohol was never a friend but an enemy preventing me from having human connection, a connection with myself and a connection with my higher power.

 

I still have work to do and I am never free from addiction disease, I know if I pick up again it will have a ripple affect in my life, and my life is so great why destroy it for that buzz. The buzz I now crave is feeling life and love. Most of my life I disliked feeling anything. Numbing for me meant no pain or hurts from others but it also numbed me from good feelings as well. Healing and overcoming my addiction involved growing strong emotion muscles. Now that I am able to feel life and not numb life I have to embrace every feeling in every situation. The more I feel life and not hide from life, the stronger my emotion muscles get. I also had to start feeling those dark and difficult sensations I use to suppress during my childhood and addiction. I grew up hating my feelings because I was a very sensitive child. Everything hurt so I thought if I just numb my feelings I wouldn’t hurt. The problem lies because when I numb the bad feelings I also numb the good feelings. Once I got sober I had to start trusting that my negative feelings won’t destroy me. The fear in sobriety won’t kill me. No feelings that come in sobriety will destroy me. Emotional development will be the inevitable outcome once my muscles grow strong. Cravings are terminated when there’s no longer a need to numb or run from my feelings or my truth. Feeling life will bring wholeness and healing. In the past when I tired to get sober there were recovery programs that scared me into getting sober but also helped me gain some insights into addiction. I was in sobriety and struggling to make my life work but in so much pain. That was a sign that I was not recovering. I had to let go of the past pain in order to feel life in the moment. I had to start seeing my life as a clean slate and create from there.

 

 

Thinking my way through life without embracing feelings was a way to survive as a child, living in the mind. That works against me as an adult. I looked for insight with my infected mind, some how thinking it will lessen my internal misery. When I first got sober I believed the recipe for happiness was buried within the chapters of a book or outside myself. Outside stuff will somehow heal my inner pain or relieve me of pain. Happiness is acquired in gradual steps . It’s an inside job that requires steady, hard work and dedication to growth and healing everyday. Baby steps will get me there. Wellness has to be a conscious choice. My mind, body and soul need to work together and be on the same page, or my life will go astray. I’ve struggled with bad feelings my whole life. I use to think bad feelings did me no good. At times staying busy helped me ignored them. I thought if I just worked a lot of hours or took a class I would feel fine. Bad feelings wont leave if I don’t embrace them and let them flow out of me or onto paper. It’s a human emotion that will always come up no matter how great life is, I will eventually feel sadness and that’s OK. I had to learn how to be comfortable in pain and not hid or react right away in pain. I have to embrace it, grieve and let it go.

 

I can use sadness as a guide to change or for art. Addicted behavior means stay busying, numbing and not dealing. When I was an active addict and in times that were calm and serene my mind started racing causing my emotions to start feeling bad. I would hit the bottle or use outside substance to numb me from feeling. That’s why being alone was the worst for me, all I had was this infected mind that made me feel fear so I would drink and drink until the next day repeating the cycle. I never learned how to deal with bad feelings. I would rush to my head, analyze those awful emotions. I would give them reasons to be there like I deserved to feel sad or anger emotions or beat myself up for wrongdoings probably some I hadn’t committed or even committed yet. I would than feel even worse. Emotions automatically became thoughts, and I never learned how to separate my emotions and thoughts from my true self. Now that I am sober, I can see that i am not my emotions, thought’s, or surroundings, I am the captain of those three.

 

 Anything that seemed unfamiliar or foreign brought intimidating feelings, my natural instinct is to want to feel safe in the unknowns especially as a child or when I first start having strong feelings for someone. I frequently found a hideout or an escape as a child in film or music. As an adult I turned to alcohol and never took a leap of faith without certainty. Now, I just embrace those unknowns and let them play out. I can’t let my mind prevent me from experiencing life in all forms. The goal of healing is to learn to feel everything. Feel my past pain, let it flow out of me. Feel my present moment and whatever that is. My feelings were suppressed as a child causing my emotional growth to be underdeveloped. I was at times abused when expressing happiness because my parents were annoyed with the sound of my voice. I started showing limited emotions out of fear. Growing up trying to function with a very limited number of emotions hindered my ability to react properly in life. That’s when I turned to drugs, booze, sex, and food to cope with difficult and awkward experiences. Those experiences created negative feelings. If my parents soothed and helped me learn to accept my feelings as a kid rather than escaping or shutting them down. I would never have needed to numb my discomfort with substances or behaviors. Running from my misery was the only means of surviving the dark childhood. As an adult it harmed and hindered my growth.

 

It always seems worse, before it gets better. That is very true when you first get sober. The worse stage only lasted a few weeks for me and that may differ in every one. It will get better but it will be challenging. The good news is there is so many outlets of support every step of the way from meetings and online groups. The next noticeable sign in recovery is noticing the absence of pain. That also felt uncomfortable because pain was a big part of my life, and when pain left I felt empty. That’s a good sign to start creating self love, compassion, gratitude, and positive emotions inside myself. It brings a life high that is indescribable and can last as long as you want it. As a child I learned to be a non-needing human. I had to adapt to situations instead of dealing with my emotions, those emotions built up overtime. My difficult feelings did not matter because I just needed to survive. My coping process that helped put those emotions away was living in my head. I fantasize most of my day about how life will be different when I grow up. I thought I would be in control over my life circumstances. I would also see sad movies and think they had it worst than I did, that made me feel better. I would compare my life to others and that helped me feel thankful for my life that was horrible, it made me feel grateful for my pain in some weird way. There’s always someone who has it tougher. We always hear stories of our grandparents having to walk in the snow for hours or work long hours. So I felt I had to accept my pain or situations. I would say well my pain isn’t so bad, minimalize  the pain I was in. It was an excuse not to change. Being mentally abused or bullied in school I would tell myself, well I could be dead. It was the wrong way of thinking. I built up an incredibly high tolerance for pain, misery and discomfort. My pain level had to be severe to get my attention and even then I would not change. My compassion was reserved for others and never for myself. When feelings surfaced that were difficult my parents thought it was unacceptable. When feelings are treated as bad or wrong, we regarded them precisely the same as we get older. Harshly judging them and myself as bad when they surface. Each time bad feelings like frustrations and anger came up, I tried to make them go away instead of embracing them and finding the root cause.

 

Beneath my addictions had a common denominator. I’ve been a survivor of traumas, filling my inner emptiness or deadness with substance. An addict to more than one thing, when I stopped one substance I moved on to the next. I couldn’t give up all drugs and alcohol, I needed something to fill me up. After detoxing and healing I can now start to search within myself for talents and abilities. I believe each of us come into this life with unique talents and abilities. When these inherent gifts are recognized we can begin to learn who we actually are. It has taken me twenty-eight years to find my talents and purpose. I guess I am what you would call a late bloomer. I feel one of my talent is, understanding human nature. My therapist once told me I should be a therapist. I did not understand what he meant at the time. He said I understood myself very well. It was as if I already knew the answer I just needed reassurance. I believe my childhood traumas and living with addict parents, growing through addiction has pushed me into finding out why people act the way they do. Challenging paths forced me to get intimately acquainted with myself so I can help others do the same.

 

Addiction is not the cause of my pain. I was the cause of my pain, i allowed to pain to grow and grow.  Addiction is only a symptom of needing to escape feelings that been dangerous or scary to have whether they’re bad, or good. It’s not just negative feelings that are scary. Feeling positive ones can be as well. I lacked the frame of reference on how to embrace happiness and love. It felt foreign and uncomfortable and the reflex to self-sabotage came out eventually. 

 

Healing doesn’t come quickly and if it did I would feel like I’m living inside someone else body. Two years of hard work has gotten me here today. If i did not go through the process from day one sober to two years sober than i would not know how to deal with life situations. I would feel threatened not being able tolerate the change if it happen quickly. Change happens gradually, so I can adjust to it as it comes. Change involves slow growth. Imagine being a normal citizen than overnight you’re famous. Change that happens really quickly can cause me to be destabilized. Now imagine if that change happened quickly inside us. I might go crazy, wanting to go back to my old addiction ways. Growth must occur slowly, or it might be hard to handle even if the rewards are huge.

 

While i was an active addict  and felt internal pain I search outside myself to cope. When I felt lonely inside I searched for sex outside. This is the same with love. Growing up I felt unlovable at an early age so I searched for love outside myself. Having a good relationship with myself was impossible while being an active addict. I found myself failing miserably in my early relationships because I had little self-love. Upon deeper analysis, I found out that self-esteem and self-love are issues that are related together. Suffering from low self-esteem, it is deficient of self-love. Loving myself felt unnatural in the beginning of sobriety because my mind was my enemy and was ingrained with self-sabotaging thoughts for twenty eights years. Creating self-love is conscious decision. When I didn’t love myself, I was basically telling the Universe that I was unworthy or undeserving of any love or positive outcomes. Manifesting unhealthy people in my life, allowing myself to stay in relationship that I suffered from, like cheating partners and abusive partners. I allowed people to be disrespectful to me because I was disrespectful to myself. Learning to love myself starts with making a conscious decision, an intention to become happy and lead a fulfilled life. It’s impossible to reach full potential with no self love or low self-esteem. Once I started creating self love and building up my self esteem my life started syncing together like a rebirth.

 

As a child no matter what my parents did to me, I still had deep love for them. I unquestionably loved my parents even when they abused me and were the source of my pain. I even lied to protect my parents from the police. With that I learned to accept that love comes with pain. That became the foundation to my relationships were all my adult attachments were built on. In short, love equaled pain and this pain must be calmed, or how can I maintain love? I put up with others hurting me and stood by there side no matter what, that created a lack of respect for myself. I thought i was unlovable so even the slightest touch of affection was enough. I thought since it was difficult to gain parents love, it will be hard to gain love from someone else. I thought I had to put up with others abuse and that pushed me to the bottle. I had to unlearn most of what i was taught as a child and i am still unlearning.

 

 I can’t escape my bad parts and only hold onto the good parts, I have to accept them all and if there are parts that need work, then I work on them. Before I work on them I have to accept than understand them. The longer that I am sober the more comfortable I am with my dark feelings or dark side. I  know use it for my artwork. It doesn’t mean I’m a bad person, I just enjoy finding pain inside myself to create poetry. I enjoy dark art and some unwatchable films. Knowing my dark side and good side brings me a more understanding of myself and also on what I need to change. Feelings are just parts of me that I discarded a long time ago, and they’re wanting to find their home again inside me. Feelings are not my true self just but a source I can use to find my true self. Being a healthy and a whole person means being able to experience and operate from a full repertoire of different types of emotions, without self-judgment. This is what’s required to be a multi-dimensional, fully integrated human being. My dark emotions are not monsters that live under my bed, they are inside myself and I have to embrace them. I can’t drown them or outrun them. My young formative years had powerfully influences on my beliefs, principles, and sense of Self. True healing means challenging some long-standing ideas, superstitions and rules I lived by, which had trapped me in self-loathing and toxic shame.

 

I am unlearning flawed beliefs and faulty patterns that has brought chaos to my life. My program may keep me from using but I have to be resolving the underlying pain that made me want or need to use. Getting sober has been easier than shifting how I think. It’s like having to learn a whole new way of thinking so I can perceive the world differently. Sobriety doesn’t fix my life it just gives me an opportunity to fix my own life through my recovery program. I wake up everyday happy and next to my love and working on the last chapter of my novel. It’s very possible to not only stay sober but to achieve dreams and goals that will heighten the love I have for sobriety.

 

So today i will spend the day in tears of joy with my love and good friends. I now know my past addiction, dark childhood, shame, guilt, pain, feelings, addiction symptoms, human errors are not I or my true self. I am who I choose to be right now, in this moment. We are all souls having a human experience and our worst parts do not define ourselves.

 

I  have been missing in action on Sober Is the New Black due to working on my first novel, it should be done very soon so i can get back to blogging and poetry. Here are some Poems i have created since my Last post, share them if you’d like. I can also email you any poems for free, most of my poems will be in the novel.

 

 

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Stay connected with love, Adolfo Vasquez

 

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600 days of sober

Hello Friends, today is 600 days of sober. I just got back from a three-week vacation in Palm Springs Ca. Palm springs is my hometown so I was surrounded by supportive family and friends. Seeing the ones I love with sober eyes and a clean mind is a great gift. Being in the moment around them and feeling noting but gratitude. The New Year will bring upon some amazing moments like my first novel being published, plus my job ending this month so I can start writing full time.  All I have to do is stay sober and believe in the universe and god guiding my feet

 

After healing old wounds, I started working on finding my true self.  What helped me in finding my true self was finding what I wasn’t.

 

I was born without any knowledge, or awareness of my own self.  Right away I became aware of my false self.  It has to be this way because my eyes open outward, so does the body senses.  Ears listening to others, tongue tasting outside foods.  First drinking breast milk from my mother.  All these senses open outward, learning from what others “tell me” or “show me” about myself.

Birth means coming into this world.  My mother is the first thing I came into contact with than I became aware of my own body.  My body becomes part of the outside world. My body getting hungry for outside food. I become dependent on surviving from what is given to me from the outside.

 Once I am done eating and fulfilled from the outside than I look down, becoming aware of toes.  My mother pulls on my toes and calling them toes, so I am learning early on who I am and what I am from others.

 A small ego is created , at that point I am looking to my parents on finding out who I am.  A false awareness is reflected by how others think of me and feel of me.  I am too fresh, too green and not aware of who I am.  My bones are still forming and can be broken easily, just like my mind, heart and soul.

The ego is born, through love and care, if I felt good and valuable, if I had some significance. Most of my life I knew what others thought me but not really who I was. “Living a life as a reflection of what others think” .  My early memories I felt unappreciated so my ego was born ill, sad, and worthless.

My parents built the foundation of my being and ego, others joined them in later years. My world grew as it did my ego became more developed.

 If I grew up living in the jungle isolated, I may not have an ego but would grow up like an animal even than I would never know true self.

 As a child I tried to make my parents proud and happy but they were addicts showing me rejection. I started seeking validation in others taking that into adulthood. Trying to please everyone in sight. As a child I acted out and tried hard to achieve attention that I lacked.

 I was born with two cores completely unaware that one core is true self and the second core is created through life called ego. Others early on shaped my ego core. This core is false, because nobody can shape the real core or true self.

 My Ego core is shaken when I do not receive what it needs, validation, respect, admiration, likes on Facebook.  If I did great in school I was rewarded with a toy that toy became an extension of myself and when I lost that toy I cried and felt I lost part of myself.

The more the ego receives the more the ego wants.  The bigger the ego core gets.  Early on we are taught subconsciously that the outside is an extension of who we are but that is false.  Trying to fit into society, feeling inadequate or ugly if I gained a few pounds.  My ego was growing bigger and bolder by society.

 Finding true self can be known only through false self. The ego is a passageway to my true self.  The real can be known only through life illusions.

 My core was a mirror of the world opinions of myself throughout life. The moment I started separating false self was day one sober, I didn’t know it at the time but I knew drinking was no longer part of me.  I wanted to change and knew if I wanted to find a better life or a whole me I would have to put down the bottle.

 First I have to know what are not my true self, my home, other opinions, and my past addiction. When I can see the false than I can see and understand my truth.  My ego is always in search to become bigger, wanting to survive. Somebody should appreciate it.

 My ego core is designed to control me, pull me away from my true self.  I have to behave in a certain way, because only then society appreciates me. I have to walk a certain way; laugh not so loud, follow a certain code of manners, a morality.  If society doesn’t appreciate me than my ego core will be shaken and when my ego core is shaken, I don’t know where I am going or who I am.

 

I have to get rid of all parts of the ego to attain my True core.

 

There comes a period when the ego core shatters. When I know nothing of who I am, or where to go. All the boundaries start to melt away. A feeling comes over of not caring what others think me.  I start doing stuff that I naturally enjoy doing.  I’m somewhat confused, feeling empty inside and chaos seems to be around.  This will cause fear because my ego was the source I look to, to guide me in life. I had to pass through the chaos before I found my true-self core.

 

Once I became sober I was able to take the ego core apart little by little by understanding that is the cause of all my misery and false. Everything started to settle. I started to just exist; everything suddenly became beautiful but a different kind of beauty. This beauty is louder and easy to see, it’s in everything.

 Whenever I was feeling suffering or great sadness or anger, I had to watch and analyze, somewhere in that misery I will find the ego.  The ego goes on finding reasons to feel those things. This ego comes continuously in conflict with others because every ego is  not confident about itself. Is has to be, it is a false thing.

For Example if I had my hand closed with nothing in it but I started believing there was something in it, a problem is born. I would fight with others  who . made me aware that I am carrying nothing. Anyone calling me something that I don’t identify with is like hammering a nail in a wound. The ego is false.

A person who finds their core of true self is never in fights with others, others may come and fight but a person who is their true self will never fight back with anyone.  You may hit, argue or try and fight with an enlightened man, but that is your problem, not his. And if you are hurt in that clash, that too is your own problem. He cannot hurt you.

 The ego lives for attention, any attention even if somebody is fighting and angry with you, even if somebody loves you or not loving you. The Ego has attention. If nobody is paying any attention, nobody thinks that you are somebody important, significant, then the ego will come out.

 Others attention is needed with an ego. There are a million ways I can attract attention from others. In the past I would dress a certain way trying to look beautiful, get skinny or behave in certain way. Become very polite, or depending on the situation changing so others immediately notice the change so others pay attention.

If I lost everything that surrounded me, if the whole world suddenly disappeared, or if the outside world is in chaos, it won’t make any difference because my true-self core is always still.

 If my husband leaves me for somebody else.  My ego core will be completely shattered because he is paying attention to some one that is not I.  He is now caring and loving someone that is not I.  He is no longer helping my ego core feel that I am somebody important. When I lost my ex of three years I felt as if my whole empire was lost.  On top of Dealing with an addiction I started thinking about suicide. I  can reflect back on why because I had no center of my own. Vince was my center; he was giving me a center.

 This is how people exist. This is how people become dependent on others. It is a deep slavery. Ego has to be a slave. It depends on others. Only a person who has no ego is for the first time a master; he is no longer a slave.

I have to look for the ego not in others, that is none of my business, but in myself.  Whenever I feel miserable, immediately I’ll close my eyes trying to find where the misery is coming. I will always find it’s the false ego core that has clashed with someone. I expected something and it didn’t happen or I expected something and the opposite happened. Whenever I am miserable, I have to find out why.

What causes misery isn’t outside us. It’s within us but we are program to always look outside. Asking ourselves

Who is making me miserable?
Who is the cause of my anger?
Who is the cause of my anguish?
And if we keep looking outside we will miss what it is that is causing misery.

Just close the eyes and look within. The source of all misery, anger, anguish, is hidden in you and I. The ego.

If I find the source, it will be easy to move beyond it.  If I can’t see it’s my ego that gives me trouble, I will prefer to drop it because nobody can carry the source of misery if they understand it.

 There is no need to delete the ego. I cannot delete it.  If I try to delete it, I will attain to a certain clever ego again which says, “I have become humble.” I can’t try to be humble. That again is the ego hiding but it’s not dead.  Nobody can try humility, and nobody can create humility through any effort of their own.  When the ego is no more a humbleness just comes. It is not a creation. It’s more of a shadow of the real center.

A really humble man is neither humble nor egoistic. He is simply “simple.”  He’s not even aware that he is humble. If you are aware that you are humble, the ego is there. Look at humble a person. There are millions who think that they are very humble. They bow down very low, but watch them they have the cleverest ego. Now humility is their source of food. They say, “I am humble,” and then they look at you and they wait for you to appreciate them.

“You are really humble,” they would like you to say. ” In fact,  you are the most humble man in the world; nobody is as humble as you are.” Then see the smile that comes on their faces.

What is ego? Ego is a hierarchy that says, “No one is like me.” It can feed on humbleness – “Nobody is like me, I am the most humble man.”

This is how the ego goes. It is so  cunning. We have to be very alert, only then we will be able to see it. Don’t try to be humble. Just try to see that all misery, all anguish comes through it.

No need to delete the ego. We cannot take it away or delete the ego. If we try to delete the ego than the person trying to delete the ego is the ego. It always comes back.

 Stand outside the ego and watch it work, try to understand it. Nothing I do like becoming more humble, getting humility, or become simple nothing will help.  Only one thing is possible, and that is just to watch and see that it is the source of all misery. Don’t say it. Don’t repeat it – WATCH. Because if I say it is the source of all misery and you repeat it, then it is useless. YOU have to come to that understanding. Whenever you are miserable, just close the eyes and don’t try to find some cause outside. Try to see from where this misery is coming.

 If you continuously feel and understand that the ego is the cause of misery than the understanding becomes so deep-rooted, one day you will suddenly see that it has disappeared.  Nobody deletes it – nobody can delete it. You simply see it has simply disappeared, because the very understanding that ego causes all misery becomes the deleting. The very understanding is the disappearance of the ego.

 The whole path towards divine, has to pass through the ego core.  The false has to be understood as false.  The source of misery has to be understood as the source of misery – then it simply deletes.

 When you know it is poison, it deletes.  When you know it is fire, it deletes.  When you know this is hell, it deletes.  Then you simply laugh at the joke that you were the creator of all misery.

A child building a sand castle while he sits in the middle, laboring away as the walls go up. A moment will come when he is enclosed; all around he has made a wall.  Then he cries, “Help, help!” He has done the whole thing! Now he is enclosed, imprisoned.

This is childish, but this is what I have done in my life. I made a painful house all around myself and cried, “Help, help!” The misery becomes stronger because there are helpers who are also in the same boat.  It is difficult to see one’s own ego.  It is very easy to see others ego but that is not the point, I cannot help others see their ego, each ego is different. I Just watch it my own ego.

I can’t be in a hurry to delete it, I have to just watch it.  The more I watch, the more capable I will become.  Suddenly one day, I simply see that it was deleted and when it deletes by itself, only then it is gone.  There is no other way.  Prematurely I cannot delete it.  It will drop like a dead leaf.

The tree is not doing anything – just a breeze, a situation, and the dead leaf simply drops.  The tree is not even aware that the dead leaf has dropped.  It makes no noise,  it makes no claim – nothing. The dead leaf simply drifts and lands on the ground, just like that.

When you are mature through understanding, awareness, and you have felt totally that ego is the cause of all your misery simply one day you see the dead leaf dropping. It settles on the ground, dies off on it’s own accord.  You have not done anything so you cannot claim that you have deleted it.

You notice it has simply disappeared. That is when True Self arises and that real center is the soul, the self, the god, the truth, or whatever you want to call it. It is nameless so all names are good. You can give it any name of your own liking. Sober is the New Black

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Stay Connected with love, Adolfo Vasquez

I Recently did an interview with After party Magazine. Here it is, hope it help’s inspire others to get sober or stay sober.

https://rehabreviews.com/reader-spotlight-got-sober-adolfo/

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

1 Year Sober

Today is one year sober; today I feel nothing but gratitude. A sense of self-awareness I have never felt before. In one year I’ve learned more about me than in the 28 years of living. What I’ve learned in one year sober is I am not my past, my mistakes, and my past addiction. I’m whom I choose to be today, in this moment.

A year ago today, I was sitting on a mattress on the floor in a new apartment, I’d lost the love of my life because of my addiction, and I was ashamed and embarrassed. Little hope, lost with no purpose or sense of direction.

Today every aspect of my life is amazing, like I am walking in a dream. I see the world with different eyes. Eyes that is clear and filled with hope and compassion.

Sobriety does not fix everything but it allows me to have a clear mind so I could fix my life. The first few weeks into sobriety my emotions were up and down. Happy, Sad, Hopeful, defeated, angry, confused, blissful, inspired, sobriety allowed me to feel life on life terms.

The list of gifts sobriety has brought into my life are endless. Surrendering everything to the power greater than myself has been beyond rewarding, it taught me a word called forgiveness. Forgiving everything including forgiveness for myself.

Sobriety put purpose in my writing. I heal through my art. Hopefully inspiring others to heal through art. I now see love in all aspects of my life. When I was using I was blind from the love that surrounded me. I was caught in my mind that created false stories that brought me pain so I would use, creating a vicious cycle of using.

Now I see love so big, I feel love so much it’s as if my heart going to explode.

The ISM in Alcoholism is Alcohol-Inside Self & Mind. My disease centered in my mind creating the body craving. I had to become aware of the mind voice. Once I was able separate the voice from my True self. I could stop the voice dead in its tracks. The voice would speak to me like just have one more drink or only wine. The voice would bring up my past; you had such a bad childhood, you should be angry, he’s cheating on you, blah blah on and on. How dare you, you offended me, blah, blah on and on.

The voice sounded like me, it knew what to say to get me to the next drink.

I’m stronger than the voice because I’m aware of my true-self. My true-self is stronger. I can shut it down. if it starts feeding me negative thoughts from my past.

Today I woke up happy, aware, with purpose; fire in my heart to create art, wanting to be a better me. Still working on love for myself and compassion for others. Staying open to learning new things. Sober is the new black.

I want to say thank you to the readers of sober is the new black. That allowed me to share my journey. There are no words that i can write down to show my gratitude. Thank you friends with more days sober who are my teachers and thank you friends with less days sober who my inspiration.

Sober is the New Black will continue on, my book will be out at the end of this year also an apparel line. Sobriety brings dreams that seemed unimaginable. God bless and until next time. Going to turn off my computer for the day and just live!!!!!! Seeing new sights with these clean and sober eyes.

Stay connected with love, Adolfo Vasquez

This video below was one year in the making. Hope it inspires.

 

 

one year sober

 

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Special thanks to Roxy Shih for the video

Vincent Sandoval for Photography

Stay connected with love Adolfo Vasquez

DAY 255 Sober: Surrendering

Hello Friends today is day 255 sober, the past few days have been really chill. Love waking up without hangover aches or guilt deep in my heart. Even if I wake up a bit down, I know I can control how I feel by seeing the positive in life, I just have to choose how long I want to feel down for.

One of the best parts of sobriety is the surrendering, I no longer have to carry all those heavy burdens I’ve carried for 28 years, I just let everything go. I don’t have any anger or hate for anyone. No grievances from the past. My past addiction was made up of a few things, childhood trauma, fear, and having a family full of untreated addicts. I remember being at the age of 4 sneaking into my stepfather bedroom dresser, looking for his pipe sucking on it pretending to smoke. I loved the taste of the weed resin. My stepfather and brother would take car rides and he would blow weed smoke in our face eventually at the age of 15 I experienced my first high that was weed, that turn into cocaine that turn into alcohol. I switch addiction once the substance I was using become deadly or just not fun anymore. I didn’t realize I was an addict until alcohol came into my life. I switch addiction also because I didn’t realize I was using to cope with my past. Numbing myself from reality.

Now the fear part, I was terrified of everything growing up, scared of wind, heights, mountains, and food, scared of people etc. In elementary school there was a couple of years where I wouldn’t eat because I was afraid of choking, my parents should have put me in the hospital but I eventually got over that fear. I was stick and bones. Growing up I was never taught how to connect with humans in a correct and beautiful way (Reason my previous relationship didn’t work) Now that I am sober and healing I am finding and seeing love in everybody I come into contact with. We are all flawed humans trying to connect with others. My Flaw just happens to be a disorder called addiction.

This past couple of day’s I realized my childhood wasn’t bad at all actually it was the universe preparing me at a very young age, In the process of finding out what the preparation was for. Sober is the New Black.

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Aloe Blacc is one of my favorite modern day soul singer, so inspiring and very handsome as well. hope you enjoy green lights. Check out his album Good Things

 

 

Stay connected with love, Adolfo Vasquez

DAY 41 Sober: Oprah Winfrey “Surrender”

Hello Friends today is day 41 Sober and it has been such an amazing day. I am sitting in a coffee shop in Koreatown, Ca. This place has been a safe place for me.  Sober is the New Black has been such a form of therapy for me and I am so grateful for it. Yesterday post on Oprah Winfrey was part one; the second part is about Surrendering. I saw this a while back and at the time I was struggling with surrendering but Oprah Winfrey has thought me how too. Surrendering brings so much peace.  Surrendering is a big part of me getting sober. The last few attempts at trying to stay sober was not successful because I thought I can do it on my own by not drinking. I did not understand the process of surrendering to a higher power! Once you Surrender to a higher power that you understand it to be in your life. Infinite Possibilities are waiting for you!

Hope this video helps anyone who is struggling with surrendering in any aspect in their life whether it be Loss, Addiction,or from past.

 

Stay Connect with love, Adolfo

DAY 39 Sober: FEAR

Hello friends today is day 39 sober and it feels so great! Everyday I am feeling stronger and stronger. I never knew I had this kind of strength inside myself. Addiction is such a powerful disorder that hides in your mind so its hard to separate yourself from the Addiction but once you do you take away most of its power and you become so strong and self aware nothing can take it away. Fear is such powerful thing that has haunted me for the past 28 years; it was in stilled in me at a very young age by my parents. Before I new how to talk I knew fear. Fear, that was put inside me at a cellular level caused by the blood baths. There are 4 types of abuse physical, neglect, sexual, and physical. I experience all 4 all in different levels at different times.  Starting around 3 years old into my early adulthood until I was able to fight back with my fist or run away. I will not get into my childhood quite yet but I will talk about the level of fear that crippled me and set up the foundation for Alcohol-ISM

My first fear was my parents than others came like the wind; if it were windy I would hide because I thought the wind would blow me away. When I was younger my fears were very simple like fear of wind, mountains, heights, even at a very young age I was fearful that nobody would accept me. I remember being in elementary school not having many friends because I would try so hard to be accepted I would be awkward. At a very young age I was also fearful of dying and getting sick. As I got into teen’s additional fears came about and they got more complex and I had a fear of choking so I did not eat for a couple years. I was forced and would not eat certain things. I would not chew gum; eat cheese, popcorn, etc. At the dinner table I would throw my dinner behind furniture when my parents would look away, put food into napkins than place it into my pockets than use the bathroom and flush it down the toilet. Of course my parent probably didn’t even notice or care. I probably needed therapy but was neglected from so much therapy was such a small thing in the whole picture. Fear of being evicted from are apartment caused from bouts of homelessness I experience at young age.   

 

As I got older some of those young fears stayed and new ones entered like fear from my partner cheating, fear of trust. So at a young age I was thought, Fear, to Lie, steal, anger, distrust, Self hate, these are just some of the skill sets that created the my foundation. As I got older my fear turn into Anxiety, Intense insecurity, no skill sets, lack of ability to love others including myself etc. I found ALCOHOL to help with all the inner turmoil. It was a Band-Aid for a while it buried all that fear. So with Alcohol I was able to go out make friends, connect with others, feel free, laugh, love, dance, smile, listen to people, cry without others, have sex. That Band-Aid eventually broke and all that pain came out when I was drunk and it was not pretty what so ever. That invisible line was crossed and there was no turning back! 

 

Acceptance, Forgiveness for others and self, living in a state of gratefulness, being kind to others, endurance, surrendering, learning how to love myself, crying, looking into people eyes and connecting with them all has help me, and connecting the dots from my childhood pain to how I treat people today and self. Has helped me in a tremendous way. Fear is in my core and roots so I am in the process of digging them out. The past 39 days have done wonders to my soul, I cry from joy and get chills from happiness, my mind is clear and my courage is at its peak! Ready to heal the 3-year boy who lived in terror for 28 years. Lets all be kind to one another and celebrate the beauty of diversity. Life is amazing to let are fears over take are mind and rob us from this amazing experience called life! Sober is the new black!

Leaving you with an amazing song from Eddie Vedder  called rise up “Gonna rise up
Turning mistakes into gold”

 

Stay connect with love, Adolfo