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Dream Journal

VOLUME VII / JULY 2013


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.

GUEST COLUMNIST

Chris Schroeder

We also admit that, "Our lives having become unmanageable". There are two distinct types of unmanageability we experience: outward and inward. We all experience the outward effects of our behavior. If we drink we can get DUIs and suffer through hangovers; if we over-eat, we gain weight; if we gamble we lose money we need. These effects cause setbacks, and hurt the ones we love the most. We fail to live up to what we believe is our potential. These feelings dominate our spiritual and emotional condition and leave us with little hope of any true happiness. And any happiness we do find is usually related to using something or someone to get an artificial, temporary sense of elation. We refer to this state of unmanageability as "life on life’s terms" or "just the way things are". You come to believe there is no other way. How could you compare a recovered perspective with your current condition if all you have experienced is a path of addiction? You only really come to understand how sick you have become after you have begun to experience recovery. Many who continue to consistently practice spiritual recovery principles can say that every year they engage in recovery disciplines, quality of life dramatically improves. Year 25 in recovery is significantly better than year 24 if there is consistency in the application of the 12 step program.

Dream Journal

VOLUME VII / JULY 2013

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.

GUEST COLUMNIST

Chris Schroeder

We also admit that, "Our lives having become unmanageable". There are two distinct types of unmanageability we experience: outward and inward. We all experience the outward effects of our behavior. If we drink we can get DUIs and suffer through hangovers; if we over-eat, we gain weight; if we gamble we lose money we need. These effects cause setbacks, and hurt the ones we love the most. We fail to live up to what we believe is our potential. These feelings dominate our spiritual and emotional condition and leave us with little hope of any true happiness. And any happiness we do find is usually related to using something or someone to get an artificial, temporary sense of elation. We refer to this state of unmanageability as "life on life’s terms" or "just the way things are". You come to believe there is no other way. How could you compare a recovered perspective with your current condition if all you have experienced is a path of addiction? You only really come to understand how sick you have become after you have begun to experience recovery. Many who continue to consistently practice spiritual recovery principles can say that every year they engage in recovery disciplines, quality of life dramatically improves. Year 25 in recovery is significantly better than year 24 if there is consistency in the application of the 12 step program.

No one wants to admit defeat. We have been conditioned to never give up, to keep fighting. Most of our heroes and role models have been the type who overcame adversity and succeeded in what Joseph Campbell calls "The Heroes Journey". However, we must admit that our lives have spun out of control in order to develop the enthusiasm needed to start working on a spiritual solution. An accurate appraisal of one’s true powerlessness brings on a sense of urgency. That sense of urgency can ensure that the highest priority is given to regaining our health.


STEP OF THE MONTH

Step 7 is one of the most fascinating and mysterious steps on the road to recovery. It is often overlooked, downplayed, and misinterpreted, though it is one of the most important steps on the path to healing. Step 7 is all about humility—about admitting to your shortcomings and giving them over to your Higher Power. The idea of giving your flaws over to a Higher Power can seem like you are simply abdicating responsibility for your own shortcomings. This is not true. In fact, Step 7 is about realizing that you cannot change or free yourself from your shortcomings without humbly knowing and accepting your flaws, and asking for the help of a force outside of yourself. Step 1 was admitting that you were powerless over your addiction. Step 4 was making a fearless, unstinting inventory of you faults and mistakes. In step 7 you must admit that you, acting alone, are powerless to eliminate your flaws, and that only by abandoning your pride and humbling yourself before your Higher Power, can you be free of the limitations of your past. Step 7 is being truthful and unstinting about the extent of your flaws, and realizing that you cannot overcome them through willpower alone. A key part of this step is eliminating any negative influences in your life by avoiding any persons, places or objects that could lead you back to temptation. It is also important to surround yourself with people, places and things beneficial to your healing process. As long as you hold on to your pride, and insist on walking this path alone, you will never recover. Only by humbly presenting your shortcomings to your Higher Power, and admitting your own powerlessness to fight them alone, can you truly be free.


NEWS HIGHLIGHTS

In a recent report from CESAR, parents of teens greatly underestimate whether their teens are misusing stimulant medications for ADHD. According to the report, only 1% of parents believe their teens have used a stimulant to prepare for an exam, to do homework or to stay awake. However, between 5% and 12% of 8th, 10th and 12th graders have used stimulants when not prescribed.

According to a recent study by HealthDay News, older women who take antidepressants or have depression may be more at risk for diabetes or cardiovascular disease. In the study, those with depression or taking antidepressants were more likely to have a higher Body Mass Index (BMI).


COMMUNITY

This month, our community spotlight features Morgan Morris’ surf program. While the program might only be in its second season, it is firmly grounded in the 3Ps embodied by Two Dreams: mental peace, personal productivity and physical wellbeing. Morgan, who is the lead case manager at Two Dreams Outer Banks, says, "Being in the ocean promotes mental peace and tranquility with the water. When the clients learn to surf with the waves, they become part of a larger entity."

Surf lessons take place for two hours a week, and clients have the option to observe from the beach should they choose to refrain from participation. In the first lesson, clients listen to a presentation about surfing: history, traditions and contributors to the sport. The second lesson is devoted to land instruction and practicing standing on the board. On the third lesson and onward, clients are out in the water receiving individualized instruction in a group of one to three other surfers. The takeaway to receiving surf instruction? "The clients are learning a new hobby, and actively engaged in an activity that they can carry out throughout their lives," he says.


THE 3P'S

Personal Productivity

Enjoy the summer sun and ocean breeze in a fun way exercising in and around the water. Throw sunscreen and a cold water bottle into a bag and rent either a canoe or a bike from a seaside rental shop.

Biking has many health benefits – cycling improves your heart’s fitness and reduces your risk of getting coronary heart disease; it works several of your muscle groups, from your legs to your core, while having low levels of impact on your joints; and it’s a great way to lose calories and accelerate your metabolism, which will help you process food faster.

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Powering yourself through the water in a kayak, whether it is off a beach or on a lake, also has many health benefits. Paddling improves your coordination and helps you build muscle in your upper body. Like biking, kayaking will also reduce your risk of getting heart disease. The repeated motion of paddling will increase your joint flexibility, reducing stiffness and other ailments that might occur as a result of inflammatory conditions.

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More than improving the health of your heart and the muscles in your lower and upper body, respectively, biking and kayaking will simply make you feel better. There is nothing in the world like moving through the summer heat at pace and feeling the sea breeze go through your hair.

Mental Peace

July is the month of independence. Several countries, including Belarus (July 3), Surinam (July 1), Bahamas (July 10), and Peru (July 28), share the month of independence with the United States. Get in the spirit of liberation by thinking about how you can work towards your own freedom from your addiction. Legendary leaders like Thomas Jefferson, Johan Ferrier (Surinam), Sir Milo Butler (Bahamas), and Jose de San Martin (Peru) fought for the ability to control their own lives and not be influenced by an external force that sought to manipulate them. In the same way, those suffering from addiction must learn to be free of the substances and materials that color their lives, and continue to try to stay sober, achieve recovery, and adopt healthy habits to live by. This process, like the Americans seeking help from the French, may require admitting to yourself that you can’t do it alone, but the end result is worth the relinquishing of one’s pride.

Physical Well Being

No need to leave the grill and go inside to make dessert – make good use of the last of your charcoal and grill off some fruit. Grilling fruit creates grill marks and unique flavor, as the fruit sugars will caramelize. Make sure your grill is hot and the cooking grates are clean before preparing this easy yet sophisticated dessert! Top it with a scoop of frozen yogurt to make it even more refreshing.

From Epicurious

Makes 6 servings

Ingredients:

  • ½ cup honey
  • ¼ cup balsamic vinegar
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 6 firm nectarines, halved and pitted

Preparation

  • 1. Whisk honey, balsamic vinegar, and vanilla in a bowl.
  • 2. Set grill to medium-high heat.
  • 3. Brush nectarines with glaze and place on grill.
  • 4. Cook until fruit is cooked through, about 4 minutes.
  • 5. Serve with frozen yogurt with leftover glaze on top.

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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 ...