Even though my son was raised in another country, I taught him to love our homeland, the U.S.A... Even though we lived in poverty with only 2 beds and cardboard boxes for night stands, I instilled American patriotism in him.
. No one outside our home knew of our lack except the 12 and 13 year old farm girls hired by my husband # 3. It wasn’t hubby #3’s rage attacks that pushed these girl out the door almost as unexpectedly as when they had been dropped off by one of hubby #3’s seven private chaffers. These girls were used to macho rage on their ranches and farmlands.
Their peasant families had sacrificed them to come to the scary big city, so they could eat well and learn some American housekeeping and American cooking talents. That way the girls would have good resumes as far as house servant credentials are concerned. I really tried to feed my baby and these helpers first. What was left, was for me. Hubby #3 ate at fine restaurants and perhaps in one of his other homes with another of his wives and lovers.
Unfortunately the young farm girls’ pallets were not satisfied by being rationed and consuming the cheap animal parts that my son and I ate.
You know how there are 101 ways to cook ground meat or shrimp or even chicken? I bet I know 101 ways to cook chicken necks, chicken claws and chicken liver; cow guts, cow udder, and cow brains; hog cheeks, hog eyes, hog toes! We survived and did it with organic fresh spice flavors, singing: “Jesus Loves Me”, Bible stories, and the daily pledge of the allegiance. Hence, I was not surprised my son joined the U.S. Navy.
Adam was on his second tour in the Navy, when he called and reported that his base housing felt like it was floating back and forth inside a bowl of Jell-O. That was during the big earthquake in Tokyo!
His first year in the Navy I had escaped to America for my life. He and I never had an apartment or house in the States. But my loving husband #5 (we have skipped hubby #4 for now) worked night and day with only 3 days off that year Adam was coming home from active duty. Hubby #5 was working to pay for an extra bedroom and on suite to be built for his blended family son. Good thing I was well versed in poor man’s cooking. It was a very hard year money wise. We didn’t mind a bit. God had finally given us my 30 year dream of: Mama bear, Papa bear, Baby bear! Our son was coming home! We tied yellow ribbons on the corner street sign, on the mailbox and on the carport.
Adam is no longer my son. Adam is our son. One day Adam came home from his civilian job with a new family member. It was Hercules. Hercules was an expensive cricket and lettuce eating, Australian lizard.
Oh man, how Hercules beamed up to ‘lizard heaven’ each time I stroked his little head!
He grew at a rapid pace. Hercules used to ‘play-like’ nibble at my fingers. Soon his jaws gained cricket protein power and his nibbles smarted. One of the head stroking sessions Hercules bit way too hard. I yanked back my hand and to Hercules’, Adam’s and my surprise; the lizard did a double back flip and landed head first on the bedroom floor. Ouch!
Hercules was stunned. Our eyes were popped out as we waited to see if he would regain his senses. He began to move and looked O.K. But nope! He never regained his senses.
He had some good days, but most of the time his personality oozed fear, confusion, depression. He never again liked touchy-touchy. He trusted not and he hissed. He flat refused to be loved! (I guess I just mentioned hubby #4)
Just like Hercules, there are so many people that will not let themselves be loved. They suffer fear, confusion, and depression. Because like Hercules, they are little lizards that have been knocked in the head before birth, after birth, physically or emotionally, or sometimes religiously. They have become as fragile as crystal goblets. But the goblet can only contain so much rejection and condemnation. After which, they begin to condemn themselves. This is when lizards curl their tail between their legs under their tummy.
They lower their roster, no longer feeling highly of themselves. As they trough the rocky roads of normal life, the tale tips get scratches and stumped over and over on the stones along the way.
The tail inflames from the soreness of it all. One side of the tail bears pain. The other side seeks numbness. The lizards are screaming: “I need drug & alcohol relief!”
That description is the classic lizard who needs Dual Recovery. If you know a lovely lizard with emotional shortcomings and substance abuse habits, please read on.
Solution is real! Solution is found at Dual Recovery Anonymous. It is known as DRA. They are 12 Step meetings. They are chaired by peer support. Peer Support means folks who have been there and already done that, so they get it.
I, too, needed this. My mind had shut my body down unsuspectedly on 2 different occasions, while living in Mexico married to hubby #4. My tail was so damaged and inflamed. It was as if I had two tails glued together. My tail had doubled in size.
The left section had some good days, but most of the time it oozed fear, confusion, depression. The right side of my double tail, was trying to numb the left side’s discomfort by screaming for more stress pills and pain relief pills. Or, if meds were not available the scream was for alcohol at any lever: starting with (a) laced coffee latte to (b) social classy martinis held with curled pinky finger to finally (c) the sugar cane moonshine that the town bums around the Mexican produce market drank as they passed out on the sidewalks.
I had fallen on my head one too many times. Then, I got into recovery and I learned the process.
I know the whispers, the voices and the internal screams.
One voice tempts: “One little drink or pill won’t hurt. You have been so good the last days. Come on, you deserve a relief. I will be O.K.”
The other lying voice tells us: “You don’t need today’s medication. It’s all good. You have been good a whole week. What do they know? You know better. Don’t have your medication this one time.”
(Being professionally monitored as one is weaning off of a certain mediation is one thing. Drastically changing the body’s intake of a mediation all at once can cause havoc and relapse big time. The thing about relapses is that one never can be sure in what state they will return from a relapse or if they will return all at. It is playing Russian roulette.)
In DRA, Dual Recovery Anonymous, our double wide inflamed tails do get healed. We deal with life on life’s terms. We learn to cultivate the 3rd voice. This 3rd voice was chattered over before and we could not hear it. This third voice warns us, alerts us, loves us. This third voice teaches us how to carry and use a light weight recovery tool box. We stand upright. And….get this:
We laugh, live clean and sober, manage our medication correctly, keep our therapy appointments, and our healthy tails glow as we pamper and coach new comers through the 12 Steps of Dual Recovery into a good life. We are pleasing ourselves, our recovery community, and our Higher Power (as we have come to understand Him.)
Cool stuff. Important. This is all important. Oh! Have you ever stopped to think about the baby lizards caught in the middle? We can get clean, sober, and sane. Yet, what happens to the baby lizards? Be sure to check out the next Lizard Tail Tale story. See Ya then!
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Hi! I am Cindy Lizard. My Lizard Tales are stories of recovery & restoration. Why not join the Lizard Gang by submitting your story? Cindy will write it and get the artwork. She would love to hear from you! Enjoy the reads & please share our tales on Facebook,Twitter, LinkedIn, etc.