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    Following My Heart, Trusting My Gut, Using My Head, & Hearing My Angels

    The options of where to go for recovery these days is mind boggling. When I first realized I needed serious help with depression back in January, I researched the crap out of what place would be best for me. I looked into about a dozen different facilities and spoke to as many people as I could who had experience with treatment. I did my due diligence. My intellect and tenacity served me well. I gathered and synthesized about as much information as I could handle. I didn't want to get into analysis paralysis (something I can be guilty of and something I can be really good at), but I wanted to make an informed decision.

     So after I had done all the research, this one place kept pulling me towards it. More precisely, this place was pulling my heart, and my gut was telling me "This is where you belong right now". So I followed my heart and my gut to a place called Sierra Tucson. Even though it meant I had to pay out of pocket, while there were plenty of other options that my insurance would have completely covered. I was fortunate and blessed to have the resources to go anyplace. And I knew that, because I had the means, when it came to saving my life, there could not be a price tag.

    After my 5 weeks in residential treatment at Sierra Tucson, I had to choose where to go next for my Intensive Outpatient treatment, the next step in my recovery from depression. I once again did my research. As is the case in the wacky world of insurance coverage, I had choices that would have cost me next to nothing. But my heart and my gut, once again, were telling me where to go. And, just as importantly, I trusted my primary therapist at Sierra Tucson. She was the best therapist I ever had, and I love her dearly. So I chose The Camden Center in Los Angeles. Once again, it was the right place for me.

    When I got back to Boston and relapsed into a sea of alcohol, I knew I needed more help. Some dear and precious friends came to my aid, and I am forever grateful. However, this time, in my compromised state, I made an impulsive decision and ended up going to a facility in California. It was a great place. Wonderful people, amazing group of recovering addicts, and I have nothing bad to say about it. But it just didn't feel like the right place for me at that time. I was in a really bad place. I cried a lot, got on my knees many times, asked my Spirit Guides and my Angels for help, and meditated on what to do. There was a reunion for Sierra Tucson alumni starting in just a few days that was yanking at my heart and hitting the hot spots in my gut, activating my instinct. So I left that place in California, against clinical advice, and went to the reunion. 

    The reunion was the best place I could have been, the best thing I could have done, and the best move I had made for myself since I had left treatment in August. One again, my heart and my gut led me where I needed to be. And I listened to my Angels and to my Spirit Guides.

    Continuing the broken record theme, when I relapsed once again when I went to Phoenix after the reunion, I knew I needed another detox facility to clean up. And once again, the options were many. I reached out to my sister Cheryl (I don't know where I'd be without her), and found a sponsor named Angel (coincidence? No fuckin' way). And once again, my insides were guiding me to a particular place. So that's where I went. That's where I am now. And it's exactly where I need to be.

    I believe in higher planes, higher powers, and the spirit of the divine, My Spirit Guides made themselves known to me. I've realized that I've got Angels in my corner. I've always had Angels in my corner. I just never fully accepted that. My ego and my ignorance got in my way. My Angels have been silently, and not so silently, guiding me just as much as anything else.

    I keep having to learn this lesson over and over again: My mind, my powerful intellect, is but a tool. And, potentially, a dangerous Weapon Of Mass Self Destruction. 

    My mind, like any tool, when properly applied, is useful in getting the job done. But it isn't actually doing the work. I am doing the work. And I am not my mind. I am not my intellect. 

    Using just my mind to make decisions is like this is like building a house by just researching what the best hammer is, buying that hammer, but not using it properly. You need so much more. You need your body to take action. You need your heart to fire your passion to create the house. You need your gut to guide you on the many decisions you have to make. You need your Angels, your Spirit Guides, to counsel you to make the whole process a divine experience. 

    "The Great I Am", as they call it in 12 step programs, can not do this alone. I need a community. I need other people. I knew that when I was in treatment, but quickly forgot that once I got home. I've come to know that when I synthesize my head, my heart, my gut, and trust My Angels and my Spirit Guides, ask for help from the people I love and reach out to my tribe, that I find peace and clarity in the middle of a shit storm. I find that I move ahead in life. I find that I follow the path I was meant to travel.

    This has been a hard lesson for me to learn. As I've said, I can be guilty of having one hard fuckin' head. I have a strong will, but I also have a strong won't. Those must be stringently tempered by higher, wiser, more enlightened, more ethereal elements that exist not only inside of me but outside of me, on a much higher plane. 

    My will and my won't can't run the show on their own.

    Been there. Done that. It don't work.


    ©2017 Clint Piatelli, MuscleHeart LLC, and Red F Publishing. All rights reserved

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