Backing Away, Fingers Laced Behind My Head…


That line comes from Marius Gustaitis, blogger extraordinaire and top notch do-gooder-hell-raiser.  One my favourite writers out there. Period.  Full Stop.   I can’t recall the first time he mentioned that phrase, whether it was on this blog or his, but it obviously has to do with certain protocol used by our finest to keep certain persons of interest off the streets.  I’d love to say I am unaware of said protocol, but that’s just how things unfold sometimes when you’re one of our kind.  You know…glug glug, another round barkeep, etc.

I mention this because I am backing away a bit from the cyber interweb for a stretch.  Fingers laced behind my head.  Ready to move into a new position.  Prostrate.  All submissive-like.

As you know, I spend a lot of time reading and commenting on blogs – that’s my dig, ya dig? But when the Creator nudges me somewhere, I listen.  He got me out of dilly of pickle that was my old life, so I am apt to listen when The Great Mechanic says he’s got new parts for this tired engine.  So having said that, I have a few things that I would like to focus on in the next while. Namely:

  • Training for a half-marathon, which happens to be held on the exact day of my third birthday in May (how groovy is that?)  I’ve never run a race of any kind, so it will be fun.  I think. I promise to take a selfie from the back of the ambulance as they take me away if and when I cross the finish line.
  • Writing…in non-blog format.  I have some ideas that I am playing with, but will require great amounts of time to devote to them.  Finding space and time to write will be a challenge.  I haven’t written the way I used to write since getting sober.  So there is a bit of fear involved, but a good chance of regaining my chops sooner than later.  Writing here has been a big help.  If anything, it’s helped me remember the difference between “their”, “they’re” and “there”.  I think.
  • Pushing and broadening my spiritual and recovery spheres.  No alarm bells or anything like that going on in that department, but I just want to deepen what I have and take a little more time on working with others if I can.  There is a Regional Conference I will be doing service at in March and hope to do more alumni work at my old treatment center.
  • Work commitments are getting more intense at this time of the year.  I am in charge of recruitment, and we are getting ready for another busy spring and summer season.  Interviewing and testing and training staff reaches it’s nadir starting about now until May.  So much so that it may cause me to cancel my March Break vacation time that I have already been approved for.  Bummer-esque.
  • Cruising, baby.  We’re going on our first cruise ever in April, and the first trip with both boys (our youngest has been with us for about a year now, and everything is all but finalized with him, so we look forward to celebrating as a family).  It will be internet-free as well, so that will take me further into the deep blue seas of unavailability.

No longer is this the winter of my discontent.  Like the seasons, this is a budding time approaching.  I already pruned my short-lived other blog, and have been pruning other things quietly during this winter.  I’ve been de-cluttering and making psychic and physical room for the last while, not knowing why.  But I was moved to do this things…and hopefully this is why – clearing room for these challenges.

So time is my enemy.  And as such, it goes where it needs to go, capsice?  I’ve got my marching orders.  Stand down, soldier.

If there are any issues, see the General-in-absentia himself – Marius.  He has the back-up battle plan if needed.  But, frankly, you all have your plans and procedures in place already.  There is always a place to turn to when you’re lost, a friendly person to turn to when the heat’s on, a warm and dry shelter when the storm’s hitting hard.  In the end, the answer is inside each and every one of us.  Just gotta look a little closer, close your eyes and listen to that wee voice that tells you what’s the next right thing to do, as indicated.  That’s about as True North as one can get.

I’ll probably pop up now and then…lurking…chiming in now and then, when you least expect it…until then…

Cheers and Blessings, y’all!

Paul

P.S I am not internet dead, so I still email – drop a line if you’re bored: carrythemessage164@gmail.com  🙂

the-isaac

105 Comments Add yours

  1. bornsirius says:

    Awww shucks Paul. I’ll miss you around here. Your voice is such a presence in the online recovery blogging world. But I do understand, and I am glad to hear that you are taking care of yourself. Hoping that the aforementioned selfie is actually just your victorious face at the finish line. 🙂
    See you around, friend! Peace to you in your break.
    Laurie

    1. Thank Laurie – will miss being around…but I am not dead…I will still probably drop in to see you now and then 🙂

      Peace, my friend 🙂

  2. Thank you for your help and I sights. It was nice “talking” to you. Thank you for sharing your time and knowledge.
    Good luck with that half marathon. Half Higdon has great training programs. I used him when I trained, and I made it even though I drank the night before.www.halhigdon.com.
    Best of luck in your new endeavors and I will let you know when I find my higher power. 🙂
    Thanks.

    1. We’ll still talk, my friend 🙂

      I have the Hal Higdon plan – going to use it (Christy from Running On Sober mentioned that one to me as well)…thanks! It’s going to be tight, as the race is in about 10 weeks…not a lot of time to train. Great to know that you’ve done it (evn hungover…lol).

      I still owe you an email.

      Paul

  3. You will be missed! God has plans for us all as long as we are open to see them! Good luck and god speed! Regional conference? Where is that? My husband is going to one too, in Texas.

    1. Aw thank you. I might stop by now and then and say hi. The Regional Conference is the one up here in Ontario. I volunteer / do service every year. I hope work doesn’t get in the way this year. It’s a lot of fun, as I am sure you know. Nothing more powerful than having 1200 people reciting the serenity prayer together at the same time.

      Hope your husband has fun at his…and thanks for stopping by 🙂

      Paul

  4. mishedup says:

    well,
    miss you or not, good for you.
    Sounds exciting…life. Life in all it’s glory!
    I hope to see you around, or read something fab by you. or whatever…
    onward and upward Paul….you got this!
    xoxo
    michele

    1. Thanks Michele…nice to have the support from you. You’ve always been a wonderful friend 🙂

      Looking forward to these new things. I have to admit it will be a bit hard to pull myself away from this, but it will go well, methinks.

      Thanks for all that you’ve done. May drop by your corner of the world and say hi 🙂

      Hugs and blessings,
      Paul

  5. One day at a time says:

    You are going to be missed by a lot of people but your life sounds, well, like a life being lived to the full. You have been a great help to many and are a fantastic writer. Keep us posted on your writing project and enjoy your family cruise.

    1. I will…thanks! I have an idea of what my writing will consist of. Just a little meditation upon it and getting down to brass tacks will direct me. It’s actually something that was started a while ago, and abandoned. Will blow it up and start from scratch…but the original elements will be there.

      I’ll miss ya too – isn’t a groovy thing when life gets in the way in a good way?

      It’s all good 🙂

      Hugs and blessings,
      Paul

  6. mike (big mike no more) says:

    Paul

    There are eight million stories in the naked city; yours has been one of them.

    Thanks for sharing.

    1. Ha ha…just noticed your new moniker, Mikey. Love it.

      I’ll be back – can’t let this baby atrophy for too long.

      Drop me a line, Mike, if you’re up to that kind of thing – would love to hear from you in the meantime. Especially a cool cat like yourself.

      carrythemessage164@gmail.com

      Blessings
      Paul

      1. mike says:

        Peace Bro.

        1. Thank you for this, kind sir 🙂

  7. stephrogers says:

    Wow, you have a lot going on! I wish you luck, and I hope you find what you are looking for.

    1. Thanks, my friend. I will still stop by and see what you’re up to over there in your wonderful corner of the world…might do ninja lurking 🙂

      Love and light,
      Paul

      1. stephrogers says:

        Thanks Paul. I’m quite partial to a bit of ninja lurking. Say hi every now and again huh?

  8. nowine4me says:

    First of all good luck with training and running your first half! What a great way to celebrate a birthday day (non-belly button)! 🙂 I am so excited for you and inspired. Now I know what I want to do for my 365 day!

    You are a wonderful writer, and I am sure you will find success in that avenue. You will have to update us when you a final work, because I would love to read anything you write. I too am working to broaden my spiritual base. Thanks in part to you teaching me to keep an open mind and a watchful eye.

    Thank you for reading and commenting on my blog. You are a positive influence in my sobriety. I am so thankful for the wise lessons you have taught me. They say that gratitude is a gift that you pay forward. You my dear friend are a master of gratitude.

    Thank you – Heather

    1. Aww…thanks Heather for the kind and generous words. I am glad that you’re going to be focusing on your spiritual base…I mean, what’s the downside to *that*?

      And yeah – paying it forward. How fantastic is that? We give it away to keep is, as they say. It’s like water – if it stays still, it gets stagnant. When the river rushing and flows, it’s invigorated with life. it moves to other bodies of water to feed them, and the river itself is fed from others. It’s a network of ongoing power and love passing to and fro.

      I am just happy that you’re a part of this with us all 🙂

      I will keep you updated for sure, Heather.

      Hugs and Blessings,
      Paul

  9. NotAPunkRocker says:

    I’ll miss seeing you as often, but given the list you have of things happening offline I can’t be too sad. Sounds like the start to a great new season 🙂

    1. Thanks Sheena! I laugh at your avatar there now, because I saw the LEGO movie last night and *loved* it. Spaceship!! And yeah, I love when life gets in the way like it is now. Can’t say that I won’t miss the camaraderie out here…it’s been very fulfilling. But I know it’s not going anywhere 🙂

      Have a groovy week 🙂

      Paul

      1. NotAPunkRocker says:

        I need an excuse to see the movie again. Or I’ll just go anyway. I loved all the characters, but Spaceguy is me, though I am a girl LOL. Always wanting to help but not quite able to or kind of awkward.

        Plus, it’s Charlie Day from “It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia”, which is my go-to show after a bad day.

        1. I need no excuse to see it again! I loved it through and through. I just had that “Everything is Awesome” song in my head for hours after though! Ugh. Oh Tegan and Sara, I remember when you just strummed on a guitar and sang of heartbreak…lol

  10. I am so excited for you, Paul! Though I will miss you greatly (duh!), your words will give me enough to go on until you come back and let us know how all of your endeavors are going. Good luck on the half training…you’ll be fantastic and we will all expect a full recap of the race (you’re gonna love it!!).
    Please drop by if you need anything and, when it’s time, give us a hint about what you’ve been writing.
    Much love, sunshine and fun-filled cruise vibes being sent your direction from MamaMickLand!

    1. thank you Michelle. I will miss ya too, my dear friend. I am looking forward to being a part of the Halfers as you mentioned. I have gotten some great advice so far. When it comes down to it, it’s finding the time and space for actually doing it. Plan on going after dropping the kids at school, methinks. I am registered for the race, so that is incentive enough to get going on it!

      Thank you for being the wonderful you that you are, and how you support so many others out here – you have quite an abundance of love and wisdom to share with us all.

      We’ll keep in touch 🙂

      Have a wonderful week

      Hugs and blessings,
      Paul

  11. I’ve been lurking here for a while now, but hadn’t gotten around to saying “hi, I love your blog!” – so will do so before it’s too late 🙂 Good luck with the running and writing and enjoy the cruise! I first came across your blog when I was still drinking – and I stopped 2 weeks ago. Your blog has been a part of this journey for me – I’ve found your writing so inspirational and helpful, and perhaps even part of me learning to speak up and speak out. Thank you – lots of love and best wishes for your future. Sounds exciting!
    MTM. x

    1. Thank you, MTM…and nice to meet you 🙂

      I can’t tell you how happy I am to see you at two weeks sober. What a gift! Speaking out and sharing…this is such a big step for us. We normally hold it all in, try to be champions and therapists and clergy and enabler and judge, jury and executioner all rolled up in one. But sharing brings us to a new place, opens us up, shows us a different way to be.

      Glad you’re sharing. Look forward to reading how things are going for you.

      Blessings, and thank you so much for being here.

      Paul

  12. Wishing you the best with all the exciting times you have ahead. Your writing is amazing so I do hope you get round to it and it’s not a the bottom of that very busy list, that would be tragic. You are very gifted and that has helped so many on here, including myself.
    Please keep adding your words of wisedom when you can.
    Meanwhile, enjoy your family and take care as you continue the next stage of your journey.
    Thanks for being part of mine 🙂
    Carrie

    1. Thank you Carrie for your kind and wonderful comments. I do feel excited about it all. I am already feeling the benefits of just a few days already. The cruise..well that’s just a lark and a nice excuse to get pampered 🙂

      I will certainly stop by…and thanks for making my day here…you are on a wonderful journey and always look forward to reading how things are going with you. Big changes since I first started reading about your path 🙂

      Blessings and hugs,
      Paul

  13. Will miss your awesome writing, but super happy for you branching out into the “real” world. And maybe we’ll be reading your writing somewhere else one day? Certainly hope so 🙂 Best wishes on the running and enjoy that cruise! Hope to see you on Twitter occasionally.

    1. Ha ha…yes! The “real” world. Spent so many years sheltered from it, might as well see what the big fuss is all about 🙂

      I do hope that my scribbles will be seen outside these screens. It’s a tough slog, of course. Nothing at all is preordained. I am doing it for me, and if it finds an audience some how, that’s icing.

      Twitter I will be around, just not as much. It will certainly help keep me connected to others…including you. 🙂

      Have a wonderful day!

      Paul

  14. Lisa Neumann says:

    Somehow I know that wherever you go you’ll be carrying the message. You will be one of my forever friends, so there’s no saying goodbye. Thank you for you love and support over at Sober Identity. xox

    1. Thank you Lisa…we all carry it in our own way, don’t we? Might just be in another guise. And forever friend indeed – no goodbyes. I will be here before I know it, and it will still feel like home with you here. Thank *you* for the love and support you give everyone…myself included. You’re a special person, and definitely a part of my recovery.

      Blessings and hugs

  15. Good luck with all of your endeavors and we shall see you on the flip side. Drop by when you have time. Thank you for all of the wisdom you have shared. xx

    1. Thank you kindly, Jeni. It will pass quickly, this time away. It will be a good refocusing for me as well. Promise to update at some point…be well on your journey, my friend 🙂

      Paul

  16. sherryd32148 says:

    This space will not be right until you’re back but I completely get it. Enjoy your time away. I’ll miss you.

    Sherry

    1. I’ll be back, Sherry. It’s all good 🙂 I’ll miss ya too – might lurk on you 🙂

      Namaste

  17. fern says:

    Wishing you smooth sailing for all of your days here on this earth. You will be remembered and missed, but time marches on and so shall you! I wish you all the best, Paul.
    {{sniff}} {{sniff}}
    ~~Fern~~

    1. Fern!!!! I will be back. I ain’t dead yet…lol. Just a sabbatical. I am probably going to steal glances at your words…watching your journey open up has been an honour to bear witness to. Smooth sailing to you…and remember, you can’t change the winds, but you can adjust your sail 🙂

      Hugs,
      Paul

  18. stacilys says:

    Ohhhhh, I’m going to so totally miss my Canadian blogger buddy. But you know what, GOOD FOR YOU. You gotta do what you gotta do. I hope you won’t be a stranger though. Every so often you must grace us all again with your excellent posts and LOL humor ok. Have a great cruise and good on you in all you set out to do Paul.
    Many many many blessings =)
    Staci

    1. Look at us – a bunch of hosers typing words back and forth, quarter of a planet away from each other and yet we connect in a way. How groovy is that? What are the odds of us crossing paths? The Creator had a hand in this, no doubt. He’s always up to this kind of thing. Must mean we are to learn from one another. Sounds like a good pinkie-promise thing to do.

      Thank you so much for being here, Staci…I look forward to peeking at your poems and prose when I can…it’s always a treat 🙂

      Blessings and hugs,
      Paul (or Paulo, if I were from Brazil, but it’s really Pablo, on my birth certificate)

      1. stacilys says:

        Really? Pablo? What’s up with that? =)
        Yeah, I know, 1/2 a world away, yet still connect on a ‘not-so-superficial’ level. Yah, I’m sad to see you go. I really enjoyed your blogs and our mini cyber conversations. You’re a great writer and I really wish you all the best, sincerely. And if you do stop by my little ordinary corner of the internet, please make sure you say hi and leave a comment. It will totally make my day (and I’m not just trying to flatter you, but really sincerely mean it.)
        God bless you and your family as you go about your journey together, and as we sign off in Brazil…
        Abraços
        Staci=)

        1. I will certainly be back…this is more of a sabbatical than anything. It will be hard to not check in and read everything I have in my reader (I have over 200 blogs I follow) and to not get involved with other blogs…but that’s part of the growth. Sometimes letting something go for a while, or for good, is a sign of healthy growth. I am certainly not ready to give up the ghost here, but I have had a pull for some time to focus my energy on other things. Good things. Different things. But I know that I will sneak peeks now and then…still need to drop a line or two now and then…don’t disappear completely. I have made too many good friends out here to just drop off like that!

          Be good 🙂
          Me

          1. stacilys says:

            Agree with you. Sometimes letting go for a while is a sign of healthy growth. Good on ya. God bless you richly.
            =)
            Staci
            Me? Be good? Always? hmmmm, ok, maybe not always. hehehe.
            p.s. i just posted one of my songs from my cd on the songs page if you would like to check it out ever. plus i’m going to be doing a series on all my songs and uploading them for people to hear. no pressure though. =)

  19. Lilly says:

    Ok, this time I can’t complain too much because it sounds like you have very sound (and excellent in fact! yay for you!) reasons for backing away from the blogosphere. But, like the others, I will miss you and I really do hope you will still hang around now and then when you need some writerly procrastination and certainly that you will post every now and then – even if it’s just a quick ‘heya’ to keep us up to speed on how you’re doing. Meanwhile, enjoy! And good luck with the marathon! Oh and happy 3rd birthday! You young tot you. xo

    1. Oh Lilly – I am not quite ready for a very long break, but a good sized one fits this soul (sole?) fine right now. I think we all need a good charging of the batteries, yes? We’re all worth it – that includes you, my dear friend! I hope you are finding ways to be gentle to yourself. I will probably pop on by and do a “hi, hello” post at some point, but in the meantime, onward soldier 🙂

      Thank you for the kind words and I will catch you on the flip (flop) side…ha ha.

      Paul…getting his 3 yr old drool bib ready for May.

  20. Paul, your thoughts and musings will be greatly missed here. But when the timing is right for us to carry on with the things which drive us, we find our purpose. It’s what wakes us up every single morning of our lives, filling our once empty spaces with passion and excitement. I wish you all the best with your new ventures over the next few seasons. As usual, I will be sending you some astoundingly positive vibes. Hugs.

    1. Thank you Gina for the fine words and sentiments there. I have a large butterfly net to catch those vibes. Gonna store them in the best possible places. Let my soul catch fire with them. Must be why I have been in a great mood the last few days. Fear is subsiding and a sense of adventure is on the way. Not a normal thing for me, so excuse if I look in the rear view mirror now and then and see if a dragon is on my tail.

      Until then…I will be back. I will no doubt see you on the Twitter thingy or on the email thingy (I am hearing things…lol)

      Hugs back at ya,
      Paul

  21. Phoenix says:

    Fare thee well and we’ll see you on the other side. 🙂

    1. Thank you – it will go by pretty quickly, methinks 🙂

      Blessings,
      Paul

  22. Good for you, Paul. Love the broadening of the spiritual, esp. (And the cruise.)
    Enjoy the sun and fresh, salted air for me.

    Blessings,
    Diana

    1. Thank you, Diana. I am already reaping the rewards of enlarging my spiritual life…can’t wait to see where it leads. I’ll take a lap on the deck there for you. 🙂

      1. It hit me that the respite will rejuvenate you for a lot more writing. WPress, you’ve seen nothin’ yet!

        1. If I can achieve even a modicum of your level of openness, honesty, insight and wizardry in my own writing, then I will be blessed.

          1. *Shaking head*
            Too much.
            You’re too much.

          2. Assessment:

            Is he
            open? Check.
            Honest? Check.
            Insightful? Check, check again.
            Wizzy? Check.

  23. lifecorked says:

    Paul, I totally get it and wish you all the best! You have been one of my biggest supporters and I thank you greatly for that. You have such a gift when it comes to writing – go with it! And, I’m SO impressed with the half-marathon – you go! Can’t wait to hear all about it! Blessings!

    1. Thank you Chenoa…I am day one of no sugar (again) for that halfsie. I have to think of everything that I jam into my mouth now…ha ha. Don’t want to carry that extra weight on race day 🙂

      Love and light to you, my friend 🙂
      Paul

  24. Paul, there’s no one like you and I’m going to miss your thoughtful input but I’m excited for you! Life takes us where we need to be. Godspeed my friend.

    1. Thank you, Karen – I am excited about this new chapter of things. Slow and steady, but I’m just happy to get here. Life certainly does take us where we need to be…it got me here thus far, crossing paths with you and watching how we have both grown…what a treat 🙂

      Thanks for all the inspiration you have given me over this time…you’re one-of-a-kind too.

      Blessings
      Paul

  25. Okay. You obviously have valid reasons. Many other important endeavors to work on. You’re clearly being directed by a trusty intuitive guidance system, to find different ways of sharing your gifts with the world. To evolve. Physically with the marathon training. Spiritually with your service in recovery. Work-wise with more attention to matters. Artistically as a writer by working in different formats. Growth is one of the natural by-products of sobriety.
    You have every reason to be confidant you’ve made the right decision–that putting aside this blog for a while is the right thing to do.
    Except for the fact,
    that I don’t want you to.
    So obviously we have a big problem.
    How do we overcome your selfishness, Pauly? With prayer? Too late for that I think. I’ll continue this guilt-tripping for now until something else pops up.
    Message has become an important and beloved weekly event for me. I have so little. Don’t take this too away. Just to better your own life. That’s not fair.
    Anything? Not trying to dissuade you (yet) just poking around. For pangs. Trying to read your face for fertile fields to plow with my International Harvester of Sorrow. It’s blitzkrieg. Find the weak spot in the defenses and pour in the dive-bombers and tanks.
    Unfortunately, there seems to be a force field around you. My Stukas are being swatted away like paper airplanes. It appears that your individuation is shielding you from emotional manipulation. I was afraid this would happen. It’s like Pintrest taking off. One more thing I didn’t want to happen, happening. When will it end, O Lord?
    Maybe this will be like listening to MGMT. Something I initially recoiled from, but have grown to enjoy. But those things are rare. I usually remained recoiled. I guess well see.
    If I un-recoil.
    In the meantime, I wish you continued success with whatever your Midas pinky rests upon. No matter what. It’s going to be good. If we’ve learned anything here, it’s that. That shit falls away but the good endures. I include you in that good. So I guess I can rest assured that you’ll be around. In one way or another. And I’m okay with that. So you’re off the hook.
    For now.
    Grateful to have gotten to know you, my sparkling wunderkind. ,
    Fingers laced, legs spread, forehead against the wall and compliant to verbal commands,
    Marius

    1. Mr. G…you had me doing the proverbial laughing out loud in many spots here. There I was, leaving work, phone in gloved hand, taking in your words as I made my way to the bike rack to hop on my two-wheeler. Had to stop and chortle. Luckily no one was around to document it. They might have to take me to HR to do a special psych test or something. Put me on a special probation – keep me away from the thumbtacks and spicy mustard in the cafeteria. I could McGuyver some sort of ground-to-air missile with yarn, old photocopier ink cartridges and lime zest.

      How do we fix a problem like Maria? Not sure. I heard the original dame from which the movie was based on died the other day. What a shame. Who wouldn’t have wanted that Von Trapp to stick around? So things must certainly take a leave. Not so permanently, but at least for a few months to change the seats over. Sweep the popcorn and old Diet Shasta bottles off the ground. Scrape the Juicy Fruit from the sticky floor. Dust the fake chandeliers with a fake duster. I guess that’s a poor analogy for what I am doing. But then again, I will learn to get my analogies up to snuff. Perhaps this is a testing ground. Like Area 51, but nothing at all like Area 51. At. All.

      Got the writing bug, and Message can’t contain it. Got the old flu…the one where writing reams of useless nonsense is the remedy. Perhaps put that nonsense in a sort of form. A form others might understand as a language of sorts. Perhaps put simple ideas into simpler words and not slip into my old purple prose days. Got the teen angst poetry stage out of my system a long time ago, so no need to worry about that. Got the sitcom stage out of there too. Already learned years ago how to stop the procrastination and over-researching phase out too. Brass tacks stuff now. Struggle a bit. hate my stuff. Get a good resentment towards all of this. Perhaps will read some heavies and get an idea how they do the deal…dust off some of the classics and give them a whirl…but above all else…write, write, write.

      And like recovery, I will find a new path…even the ones laid bare with bits of broken glass and scorpions. The hardest path is usually the right one…until it comes a time when I don’t always need a sting or a slice to keep me upright. We do get some fringe benefits in the plan, don’t we?

      MGMT? You surprise me, kind sir. I saw you as that Johnny Cash guy, yes? Rhyming words in a different kind of way…like how Morrissey would rhyme “school” with “school”. Audacious.

      We shall talk, Marius. That email thing still works on my machine. I promise not to remove it from the fancy typewriter here. You’re always near to my thoughts.

      Pinterestingly yours,
      Paul

  26. Hey that’s no way to say goodbye!

    (sorry, couldn’t resist)

    Enjoy your time away, Paul, and remember you can always come home. Seems like we go through a lot of the same things at the same time, have you noticed?

    1. You always have Lenny on the brain…lol.

      I too was thinking about this the other day when I was drifting away on all this. I remember how you took a break as well, and how you also started into new projects (I read about some of them…so exciting – even the tiling!) and how there was a shift going on for you too. I seem to be on your coattails on these things (I am slow on the uptake). But it truly is funny to see how there are some parallels. It’s a good thing, methinks.

      Glad to be on the journey with you (and if I am not mistaken, we are two days apart on sober dates?)

      Thanks Christy – will keep an eye out on how things are going there for you 🙂

      Paul

      1. May 6 here … I think you ARE two days older than me. 🙂

        I let go of a lot of the “pressure” I felt before with blogging. I mean, seriously, it just a blog. I’m not getting paid. It’s all in fun.

        I don’t hit all of the blogs like I used to, but I stop around as I can, and people always know how to find me.

        But yeah, gotta keep it all in perspective. The break was REALLY good for me. I know it will be for you too. And I know how to find you. 🙂 And ditto!

        1. Yes – that’s what I thought about the dates! I might be two days older in sobriety, but you’re light years ahead of me in other ways 🙂

          I am with you on the “it’s only a blog” thing now. I actually haven’t had any longings to read any posts the last two days, nor to post anything. I am just responding to comments and that is about it. It’s a nice feeling to not be affixed to it. It’s all fun, as you said.

          This break already feels different than the last time. There is an ease about it. Have gotten lots done already…so it’s groovy stuff.

          I know how to find you indeed. We’ll cross paths again soon.

          Hugs to you and Spot
          Paul

  27. mike says:

    You know how when you are wracking your brain in front of the keyboard and the spouse says something like “dinner is ready” or “time to go” and you reply “Just a minute Honey”

    And you know that ‘just a minute’ ALWAYS turns into 5 minutes …..10 minutes

    The spouse can only take this shit for so long, before they confiscate the laptop or smash it against the wall.

    Pauli, you didn’t by chance pen your farewell blog on your IPhone did you?

    1. Ha ha…I can see that happening in one way or another, Mike.

      I was always good at blocking out time for the computer. Doing that these days too. Sometimes the Creator does it for me. For example, I took my son to karate yesterday. Normally I drop him off, and go find a coffee shop that has wi-fi so that I can do stuff on the blog, or anything else internet-related. But the boy, for the first time, asked that I stay. I protested a bit, thinking about the time I could be using “properly”, etc. But he insisted, and so I capitulated. And while I was there, it dawned on me that I didn’t need the internet – I had my own writing to do. And so I did. And got a good chunk done. Not being in a cafe getting distracted was exactly what I needed – I had a chair, no one around me, the joy in knowing I was there for my son, and I could write solidly for 45 minutes. I was able to get my book work done. It was marvellous. Thy will be done, indeed 🙂

      But yeah, those “one minute more” moments can and do linger…

      Hope you’re well, my friend.
      Paul

      1. mike says:

        Moderation, Balance. Ying and the Yang. All that happy horseshit that we are lousy with. Keyboarding can be a bit addictive, no?

        I miss you anyway.

        1. Oh yeah, the happy horseshit indeed…ha ha.

          I am being a bit addictive the other kind of keyboarding right now…well, it’s more manageable that is.

          Miss ya too, kind sir 🙂

  28. My best to you, your family and your future. I’ve really enjoyed your blog. You will be missed.
    God Bless.
    Sharon

    1. I’ll be back sooner than later, my friend 🙂 Have a wonderful time in Florida! We’ll meet up after some time back from both our hot weather journeys 🙂

      Blessings
      Paul

  29. warmginger says:

    I’m going to miss your posts, but I love all your plans. Of course, as a crap runner myself, I’m also delighted your getting out there a bit more involves a half-marathon and on such an auspicious day too! There’s a lovely symmetry in that methinks.
    And a family cruise to celebrate all the greatness in your family – could my smile be any bigger at that thought? No. 😀
    I’ve actually wanted to email you privately about something that’s been on my mind (nothing major, don’t panic!), so I’m going to do that right now.

    1. Awww…thanks K. It’s been fun emailing with ya. Got your latest, so I will reply when I get a chance…and no, you’re not bombarding me…lol.

      Talk soon!

      Paul

  30. Come on, Paul! I go away for 48 hours, and you disappear on me!?!

    Those plans sound incredible, funny that we are both going away at the same time (just island for me, no cruise)!! Ditto what everyone else has said, and I really hope we can keep in touch, even if it’s just email! Best of luck in the half marathon (I bow to your greatness), and I look forward to some kind of update on how all these projects go! I miss you already!

    1. No disappearing act…just hanging back tying my shoelaces back here – you guys go ahead, I’ll catch up later kind of thing.

      Wonderful news on that island! Sounds delicious. 🙂

      Yeah, I am email friendly still – I still have that going for me!

      No greatness here, Josie – I am going to get my butt spanked on it, but it’s a goal. It actually helps to make decisions for me like- should I stay in a take a nap and do laundry and eat too much or should I run in this frigid weather? Well, let’s get those clothes on…it’s either that or not be able to do that run later in spring. 😦 So it’s a good motivator, if nothing else. Also helps me with what I am eating – back on my oatmeal, fruit, etc. Cutting out my sugars and all that too…so if anything, I get back on the health train.

      Anyway, I’m lurking in the background. I promise to keep in touch 🙂

      Paul

  31. byebyebeer says:

    Those all sound like lovely, rewarding causes, worthy of your time and attention. Know you will be sorely missed, and I hope you will still post. Good luck and enjoy!

    1. Thanks, K. I am in the midst today of -27C weather now deciding if I should run or not…ha ha. This is where rubber hits the road, literally and figuratively. I will run, no doubt. Gotta. I can test some of my new running gear 🙂 Anyway, thanks for this – I will post now and then at some point, but for now, I have the writing bug back in me and have eyes for that right now…and the road ahead of me 🙂

      Enjoy the glorious day, my friend 🙂

      Paul

  32. Glenn says:

    I look forward to seeing you again Paul.

    1. thanks Glenn! I got all your other responses to past posts – wow, you did some catching up, yes? lol. Anyway, I am so glad to see you here and for your thoughtful and honest responses. Made my day to see them all lined up like ducks. I hope to pop into your corner of the world when I come up for air 🙂

      Paul

  33. risingwoman says:

    Yeah! I am SO GLAD to hear that you’ll be writing in non-blog format…. I think that is just so excellent.

    Enjoy your time away from the blogosphere – but do drop by my blog later next week, OK? My next book will be on Amazon for free, and I’ll make the announcement on Rising Woman. I hope that you’ll read it – but after you train for the marathon, naturellement!

    I think this is a great decision, my friend. Take care, and I’ll see you on the flipside 😉

    M

    1. Thanks Michelle. I’ll swing by 🙂

  34. big mike says:

    Paul

    Check out this guy. Spiritual AA and a good writer too.

    http://oneonezerozeropaces.wordpress.com/

    1. Will do, Mike. Thanks brother.

    2. have checked out his site. Thanks for that Mike…nice to see another friend of Bill W out here… 🙂

  35. lucy2610 says:

    Paul great news on all your new and expanding adventures. I’ve run a half and full marathon and if I can offer any hints or tips you know where to find me 🙂 Gonna miss your posts that reach out and touch my soul but I know this won’t be the last time we cross paths. Thank you L xx

    1. Thank you Lucy…I may take you up on the offer of tips 🙂

      This won’t be a long sabbatical…but it’s been wonderfully strange not being around the blogs..ha ha.

      Blessings

  36. jrj1701 says:

    Life is full of changes, some good, some bad, some a mixed bag. I have enjoyed your posts and hope that your sabbatical away from blogging won’t turn into a permanent vacation, cause I will miss your unique take on this sobriety thing. Take care and remember to pray for this silly sinner†††

    1. True, JR…mixed bag, methinks. I don’t see this as a permanent vacation at all. Just stepping back for a short spell, is all. Thanks for the props. I certainly will keep you in my prayer, silly sinner dude 🙂

      Be well 🙂

      Paul

  37. DB says:

    Hi Paul, good luck with things! I have been in the back-ground reading all of your entries. I still will crack up out loud everytime I review your line,”they are getting their F-16 pilot license while taking Kids A and B to their orthodontic appointments and than whipping up homemade mac and cheese”. Your writing is really special. I have really enjoyed it!

    1. Thanks DB – I am so glad you wrote – made my day!

      I am blessed and honoured to have you here. Glad the words resonate. Hopefully we’ll run into each other a little bit more here and elsewhere 🙂

      Blessings
      Paul

  38. Al K Hall says:

    Hey brother! Thank you so much for your love and insights on the internet. Yours is a voice that will surely be missed. Please do keep us posted on any writing projects that may come to fruition and also on your legal issues. Until next time, bon vent!

    1. thanks Al! I won’t be gone that long, but long enough that I certainly miss you guys (already have been!). It’s strange not reading posts, commenting, writing, etc. Feels like I am outside the circle, but I know that y’all aren’t far away, and reachable any time. That’s the groovy thing about what we do, yeah?

      I will update, for sure. As for the legal stuff – I think I covered it all here: https://messageinabottleblog.wordpress.com/2014/01/18/the-sentencing-and-the-veil/

      The only fly in the ointment is that it looks like yet another year will be added to my driving suspension. Ugh. It is what it is, though.

      Anyway, thanks for spreading the love and the message, Al.

      You’re fantastic 🙂

      Paul

      1. big mike says:

        be cool. sometimes aa doctrine dosent go over well in state sponsored courses. the facilitator is always correct and in charge. capiche.

  39. Mrs D says:

    Shit! I haven’t been here for a while so I missed this. First I saw this post had 89 comments and I though ‘WHOA MOTHERFUCKER THAT’S A LOT OF COMMENTS’ then I read it and it all became clear. Paul I think what you are doing makes good sense. Because you give so much.. your posts are always so considered and rich.. and your comments on others blogs are always so detailed as well I’ve often pictured you as someone who must devote a lot of time to your keyboard. We have been the grateful recipients of your online offerings but I do think breaking away from that for a while will be a good thing. Maybe when and if you can come back you can do more fleeting offerings. Whatever you decide to do I have faith that you will do it right. You are a good man and I thank you for everything you have given all of us. xxxx

    1. Thank you Mrs. D. You’re doing more good than I can ever do – the Bubble Hour thingy and then a book about your story coming soon (yay!) and just the amount of women that you attract to your site…wow…speaking of offerings, my friend 🙂

      And with a book – I see someone else is dedicated to the keyboard 🙂

      I look forward to reading, hearing, seeing and whatever else you’re doing you soon 🙂

      Paul

  40. HighOnHugs says:

    NOOOOOO! The selfish person that I try not to be is totally bummed about reading this post! Yup you’re now on my 4th Step! Muahahahaha! Joking. But I need you! Besides, you and Maggie are about the only folks that read my blog!
    Thank you for all your encouragement over the past few months. I’m still waffling on this blog thing myself. I do feel good after writing though. And I do very much get the timing and listening to HP. So until next time…
    Thanks for all the love & encouragement on here. Big wonderful Wyoming HUGS to you & yours-
    Clairey

    1. HighOnHugs says:

      oh and FYI, I nominated you for The sunshine award. Figured walking away with a bang would be nice ;0)

      1. Thanks Clairey – that’s awfully kind of you 🙂

        Congrats on your Sunshine 🙂

        Paul

    2. Aww…thanks Clairey. It’s probably not the first time being on someone’s 4th step inventory…ha ha. But I am certainly not gone for good. Just taking a break – trying to use my time in a different way, really. But I do miss it out here and miss reading your blog too! But the thing with blogs, is that it comes down to timing, willingness and effort. Like many things. That’s why I blew up the newer blog – didn’t feel right. And now taking time off here – feels right. As for yours – you know I enjoy it very much – I hope that you aren’t writing because you don’t have a lot of comments. People do read, but don’t often comments…lurkers, as they are called.

      I spent the first while with no comments – but then again, I wasn’t out there commenting on other people’s blogs. Took time to build up a friendship and network. But we all have limited time on these things. In the end, and in my very long winded way of saying this, it’s about what feels good and right for you. If writing makes you feel better and are moved by your HP to do so, then write. We all write for our own reasons. Go with the flow 🙂

      Thanks for the note here, my friend. And yeah, I lurked over at your latest post – loved the pictures (seed spitting one rocked).

      Blessings,
      Paul

      1. HighOnHugs says:

        Thanks Paul,
        I feel good after writing. But I’m a service junkie and I think that in this situation is my hang up. I want instant gratification damn it! Lol! I believe the care taker in me is messing with my head. ;0) If everyone could just see the endless possibilities when sober. Sigh. Then giggle. Oh my how I’m a work in progress. My love to you my friend. Let me know when that novel of yours is done ;0)

        1. We all have our ways of doing service. Some love the GSR type things. Some love treasurer, etc. Some enjoy the coffee and tear down. Me, I like greeting. Less messy. LOL. I also like the reaching out online and in meetings. Not much of a GSR type guy, or into the numbers or committees, etc. We all have our strengths and joys – that’s what it’s all about, isn’t it?

          Love back to ya, my friend 🙂

  41. Sounds like exciting rhings are happening for you, darling – especially getting into a good headspace and preparing to write again.
    Things are going well for me despite a major setback with my friend who launched the Kickstarter. Hope to see you from time to time – was wondering if you’d lost interest!

    1. Ah Helena, writer-extraordinaire herself 🙂

      Thank you for stopping by the blog…we’re doing some behind the scenes stuff, the management is on a bit of leave but we’ll make sure that the cleaning staff come by weekly to empty the waste baskets and freshen up the lilacs in the lavatories.

      I got your latest Kickstarter email today, and all I have to say is Hurrah! I look forward to my personalized copy of the book 🙂

      Hopefully I can repay the honour.

      Today is another writing day.

      Thanks for making my day.

      Paul

      P.S Never shall I lose interest! I am just lurking around…

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