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Dream Journal

VOLUME XVII / MAY 2014


Two Dreams is a wellness program led by Andrea G. Barthwell, MD, FASAM that provides individualized care for those who dream of recovering a healthy lifestyle.

NOTE FROM DR. B.

Dr Andrea Barthwell MD

Our theme for this month is ‘Being of Service to Others’. This is extremely important for our well-being and for our peace of mind, whether you are in recovery or not. Think this month about possible ways to help others. The summer is a great time to take advantage of volunteering opportunities in your local area. Or perhaps you know of a friend or loved one that could use a little extra help this month. Regardless of what you do, find a way to give back to others. You will be amazed at how much joy it can bring to yourself.

Dream Journal

VOLUME XVII / MAY 2014

May Cover

Two Dreams is a wellness program led by Andrea G. Barthwell, MD, FASAM that provides individualized care for those who dream of recovering a healthy lifestyle.

NOTE FROM DR. B.

Dr Andrea Barthwell MD

Our theme for this month is ‘Being of Service to Others’. This is extremely important for our well-being and for our peace of mind, whether you are in recovery or not. Think this month about possible ways to help others. The summer is a great time to take advantage of volunteering opportunities in your local area. Or perhaps you know of a friend or loved one that could use a little extra help this month. Regardless of what you do, find a way to give back to others. You will be amazed at how much joy it can bring to yourself.


MONTHLY PROMISE

#5: "No matter how far down the scale we have gone, we will see how our experience can benefit others."

By: Brett Dunning, TDOB Clinical Director

April brings us to my personal favorite promise, "No Matter How Far down the Scale we have Gone, We will see how our Experience can Benefit Others". I have studied the original manuscript of The Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous thoroughly. The original manuscript was written in 1938 before The Big Book went into publication. Throughout the manuscript there are corrections and revisions scribbled in handwritten pencil across typed words, it presents as a mess though is very interesting. The promises which appear in the original manuscript on page forty-two (in the fourth edition of the Big Book the promises are on pg. 83) present with only one single change, the word "you" has been changed to the word "we". Written in Bill Wilson’s (co-founder of Alcoholics Anonymous) handwriting besides the promises is scribbled, "The one chance to free ourselves of criticism". I believe that Bill Wilson wrote this in reference to this month’s promise, "No Matter How Far down the Scale we have Gone, We will see how our Experience can Benefit Others".

I recall in active addiction how I was in emotional debt to my loved ones. This emotional debt consisted mostly of how my loved ones worried about me, how looking into their eyes, I was seeing a reflection of the potential lost due to the disease of addiction. This reflection cued my conscience to ask more of myself though this echoing was destroying the good times which mood altering substances once produced. My substance use once produced good times and good feelings though I now used to shut that conscience up, I tried my hardest to shut it up. I eventually shut that conscience up and isolated from my loved ones because I needed to hide from the reflection I saw in their eyes of the man I could be if I got clean. I was in deep, and I knew it, my substance use was now used as a means for self-pity and depression. This was the worst part of my addiction; I was used to dealing with outside negative consequences and reparations. I did not trust anyone, but worst of all I did not trust my own thoughts and motives and knew the beast of addiction had me. To be honest, living scared me more than death did.

I often hear individuals boasting in 12-Step recovery rooms about their negative consequences as if they are a type of badge of honor. This upsets me for I know the hopelessness we have all experienced is of far greater importance. Like drugs and alcohol are only a symptom of our disease of addiction, I believe the external negative consequences of arrests, divorces, lost material possessions, etc. are a symptom of our disease and of the least importance. We all have fell far down the scale of losing touch with who we genuinely are and which each day that passed in our addictions we lost touch of the people we were truly meant to be. This is the worst consequence which I experienced.

In 1938 Bill Wilson wrote on the indentation of pg. 38 of the original manuscript of The Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous, "The one chance to free ourselves of criticism". Initially I thought he meant criticism from others and how others viewed me. I now know he meant self-criticism. I live in a spiritual world and due to the 12 Steps of Alcoholics Anonymous I wear spiritual armor. My thought process is no longer based on how others view me, my thought process consist mostly how I view myself. I ask myself if I am doing right today towards myself as well as if I am doing right by others, regardless of how I am viewed. Bill Wilson knew that things like power, prestige, and money would not relieve us of the self-criticism as well as criticism of others. A true psychic change was needed so that we are able to gauge who we used to be, to who we are today. This change can measured how you are helping someone who has experienced that same hopeless mind state which we once experienced. Who are you helping today?


NEWS HIGHLIGHTS

May News

Medication-Assisted Therapies: Part of the Problem?

By: Jon Oelke, TD Program Manager

Prescription opioid overdose deaths have exploded since 1999, The New England Journal of Medicine reports. The number of overdose deaths has quadrupled between 1999 and 2010, up to 16,651 in 2010. The article points to substance-use disorder as the primary underlying factor. Many might be quick to point to the notion that medication-assisted therapies (MATs), such as prescription opioids, are just replacing one addiction with another. However, other research indicates that some MATs may increaseone’s retention in treatment and improve social functioning. This raises many questions: "what is the primary underlying cause to the increase in prescription opioid overdose deaths?" Are physicians over-prescribing MATs? Or is their simply a lack of oversight?

For Full Article

THE 3P’S

mental peace – physical well-being – personal productivity

May 3Ps

By: Kara Hamilton, Assistant Art Director

This month we were fortunate enough to have Christopher Kennedy Lawford as the guest speaker and host of our monthly catered networking events. He talked about his latest book, What Addicts Know and thanks to the support of Caron Treatment Centers, signed copies of his latest book were provided to all those who attended.

View His Latest Interview

What we particularly found so inspiring about this book is that it is intended for everyone, and not just recovering addicts. It is a meaningful self-help book framed in the eyes of an addict, who helps remind us what it is important in life and how to maintain balance.

A lesson that is especially relevant to our theme this month discusses how to practice helping others and reminds us that there are many ways we can give to others, and that doing so increases our own strength.

Purchase His Book


Thank you to our content contributors:

  • Dr. Andrea Barthwell – Founder
  • Brett Dunning - TDOB Clinical Director
  • Jon Oelke – TD Program Manager
  • Kara Hamilton - TD Art Director

For admissions and all staff call us at: (504) 510-2331

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Light regulates circadian rhythms

Why and How We Live Rhythmically at Two Dreams

The chains of habit are generally too small to be felt until they are too strong to be broken

- Samuel Johnson

Every living organism has a natural rhythm. These rhythms are disrupted by illness, particularly drug and alcohol use. A drug can create false sleep. A drug can stimulate alertness. A drug can suppress appetite. Another can stimulate appetite.

The science behind living rhythmically, strategies that promote and restore natural rhythms, and the role of sleep, nutrition, meditation, and exercise in the 21st century approach to healing oneself in recovery are all important aspects of your journey at Two Dreams.

At Two Dreams the concept of living in the NOW (No Other Way) is central to living a life in recovery. Similarly, mindfulness is a state of active, open, non-judgmental attention on the present. Many treatment programs and practitioners are employing mindfulness in the care and management of patients with mood, anxiety, and substance use disorders- diseases and symptoms which tend to cluster together.

Read more ...