Mystical Epiphany

Epiphany

 

Have you ever had a mystical instant epiphany like experience: A sudden perception of something significant, which in and of itself is an intuitive realization of reality that is simple and yet fully striking?

In 1990, I experienced my first known instant mystical epiphany in that, without scientific reason, I knew in the primal depth of my soul that I was through with chemical peace of mind.

Tonight, while at Denny’s having oatmeal, I think I might have experienced my second instant mystical epiphany in that, without scientific reason, I do not believe I will be sucking air long enough to witness the social acceptance dance of the next failed elected replacement president of these United States.

I am at peace.

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Merry Christmas Everyone that Reads this Blog

Merry Christmas Everyone: It is a beautiful day to be alive.  Just woke up from a much needed long sleep. Anxiety is a strange thing. My blood pressure was as high as 198 over 118 with a pulse rate of 98 last night but now it is back into a very normal range. 140 over 90 with a pulse rate of 73. Thank you to the two special angels that stayed with me and talk my anxiety into calmness. Special hugs to you both and hugs always to everyone. Guy

R.I.P. Harold Paul Lewis III “AKA Hal”

HAL-002a

It is a privilege and great honor to be the person asked by the family to eulogize my dear friend and brother who passed away on December 13, 2012 at the age of 59; 7 days before his 60th birthday.

Harold (Hal) was born December 20, 1952 in Nashville, Tennessee to Harold Paul Lewis Jr. and Loretta Jane Green. He attended and graduated from Villa Park High School. He was a loving faithful providing husband and supportive father of a beautiful daughter. He had many occupations including, Sunkist packing, food services, volunteer fire-fighter, licensed practical nurse, registered nurse, and decorated veteran of the U. S. Army Medical Corp. Hal lived his life dedicated to helping people.

Hal was preceded in death by the passing of his brother Timothy.

Hal is survived by: Wife Dianne Atkinson and Daughter Jennifer of Fullerton, California, Parents Harold Lewis and Loretta Green Lewis of Salem, Indiana, Brothers David Lewis of Apache Junction, Arizona, Guy Lewis of Payson, Arizona, Daniel Lewis of California, Christopher Lewis of Manitowoc, Wisconsin, Sister Paula Lewis Herdt of Salem, Indiana, many cousins, nieces and nephews and his beloved cat’s: Scooby, Chomper, and Ashley.

***

Hal was my friend, my brother: Right now, I’m am 100% sure that Hal is in a better place.

You see, even though we each basically took different paths in life, I was blessed with watching Hal take the courage to face life, going against our dad’s wishes for his eldest son by choosing to make a difference in the lives of others instead of seeking the material riches of corporate America; choosing the care giving path.

In so many ways Hal was more than a brother; somewhere along the way, true trust grew and two individuals learned to help each other grow and face life. In 1974, with me, still wet behind the ears; Hal was the person to console me at the ending of my High School relationship – informing me that life goes on and “this too shall pass.”

During the last 10 years of my drinking and drugging career, Hal was one of the few people that did not give up on me; encouraging and supporting my efforts to escape a chemical hell. Hal’s tireless support was rewarded on January 28, 1990.

In January of 2006, when facing my first ever major surgery: Tumor gripping the lower aorta, Hal again was a big encouragement, by helping me face reality with grace and courage. Hal helped me learn to face my fears. Hal knew that this retired cop was scared to death at the possible surgery. Like a true friend, Hal comforted me with words of hope and courage: Letting me know that God would be with me in the surgery and that I would be ok. Hal would tell me that I would live through the dangerous surgery because God was not done with me here on earth.

Twice, October and November 2012, Hal cared so much for me that he personally contacted the Arizona Heart Hospital, to ensure I was in the best of care following my major heart attack. He cared so much that he sent the operating staff and the ICU staff a wonderful fruit basket and a personal thank you card for their efforts to save my life.

I know that Hal’s passing is hard on his wife and daughter, sister, brother’s and parents. I know in my heart he is with us. I know how much he loved you, me, others, and life.

Hal was the kind of friend that stood by you no matter what. He was the kind of friend that did not direct you but walked with you through life’s ups and downs. He was the kind of friend that lived his integrity by doing his very best to always do what he committed to do. He was the kind of friend that made the best brother ever.

Hal will always be with us, and his legacy will continue through his wife, daughter, friends, and family, in our memories. Hal would smile if he were here with us today. He would have some funny story to tell to make everyone comfortable, and we would, for a moment, forget our sadness. I will miss my brother and my friend dearly, but I am also grateful for having known him.

There will never be another Hal.

I know that he is safe from harm, free from the physical illnesses or pain, and I know that he is not afraid.

Hal loved us all and we all loved him.

***

As a brother and friend of Harold Paul Lewis III, it is my hope that this poem will inspire all of us and that its effect will linger a very long time, or better yet, forever, in our hearts!

I hope to make the dash of Hal’s life: Something worth remembering.

The Dash

I read of a man who stood to speak

At the funeral of a friend.

He referred to the dates on her tombstone

From the beginning…to the end.

He noted that first came the date of her birth

And spoke of the following date with tears,

But he said what mattered most of all

Was the dash between those years.

For that dash represents all the time

That she spent alive on earth

And now only those who love her

Know what that little line is worth.

For it matters not, how much we own,

The cars…the house…the cash.

What matters is how we live and love

And how we spend our dash.

So think about this long and hard;

Are there things you’d like to change?

For you never know how much time is left

That can still be rearranged.

If we could just slow down enough

To consider what’s true and real

And always try to understand

The way other people feel.

And be less quick to anger

And show appreciation more

And love the people in our lives

Like we never loved before.

If we treat each other with respect

And more often wear a smile…

Remembering that this special dash

Might only last a little while.

So when your eulogy is read

With your life’s actions to rehash

Would you be proud of the things they say

About how you spent your dash?

By Linda Ellis, 1996

“I see the light at the end of the tunnel as being the entrance to a new journey…”

 

When I was 9 years old, I turned to drugs and alcohol to make life go away: To make the reality of life in my parents home go away. It worked for a little while and then the drink finally took me: That hideous day when I understood in my heart of hearts, that I had reached a point where I could no longer live with or without alcohol & drugs. It took me 12 years of daily effort to finally get one full day clean and sober. On January 28, 2013 I will have saved up 8400 days clean and sober: One Day at a Time. I give God all the credit for this accomplishment.

Hugs, Guy

“The Child Returned the Favor”

“The Child Returned the Favor”

I was born in Harlan County Kentucky: Part of the country where my ancestors made quality moonshine.  At 10 years old, I was outside with some kids and I came into the house where my parents were fighting.  I tried to pry them apart.  Dad beat me and I ran.  Some big kids found me.  We drank and smoked pot.  Reality went away.

After that experience, I sought out chemical salvation often.  I drank and drugged at every chance.  I was not a connoisseur: More like a kind-of sewer with drugs and alcohol.

When I was 17, plotting my escape from the confusing life of childhood, attending my second High School – I dropped out and joined the Navy.

At 33, my drinking and drugging had taken a complete nose-dive: Crashing out of the fantasy friendly skies. I was consuming as much as I could every day.  In late 1989, I had my annual physical and the doctor called me a walking miracle and a functioning alcoholic.  I got offended at being called an “Alcoholic.”  Then on January 27, 1990, when the chemicals had stopped making reality go way, my local bartender asked me if I wanted to keep drinking or go to a Recovery meeting.  She gave me directions to a meeting and I went.

TERRORBEWILDERMENTFRUSTRATIONDESPAIR – Those hideous Four Horsemen visited – yet again. The DT’s visited – yet again.

My Four Horsemen were like spiders in the dark crawling all over me.  Skin was clammy! Skin cold! I was shaking so grave I could not eat.  I locked myself in my office and wanted to stop the mental pain, but could not bring myself to pull the trigger.  After four days, I went to my boss and he said, “I have been expecting you”.  In two days, I was in my last treatment center.  When I arrived I was so angry, so scared, that I felt more lost in life then ever before.

My daughter was going to come to visit me at the time.  I had to call and break yet another promise to her.  Valerie did not get mad at me.  Valerie did not act sad.  All she said to me was, “That’s ok, Daddy, I love you and I am glad you are finally going to get well”.

I cried.  This was the first time that I ever heard unconditional love from anyone.

The child I gave life to returned the favor.

By Guy Lewis, Payson, Arizona: 

Fall 2010

Thank you Valerie Lewis

If You Are Able And Willing

If You Are Able And Willing

This Friday, the 28th of January, will be a milestone in my life: 21 years without any alcoholic drinks or illegal drug use. To some this might seem like a no brainer and yet to others it might seem impossible.

Both groups are right.

In my 54+ years on this planet, one thing I have discovered to be 100% true is that each and every one of us has our own dance with addiction. There are no people in my life that do not struggle in their own way with this issue.

Some like myself, the issue of addiction has mainly settled with alcohol or alcohol and some drugs. Others it has mainly been drugs or drugs with some alcohol. Still others have addictions with food, coffee, cigarettes, lust, money, driving fast cars, cheating on taxes, making their own rules, material satisfaction, pride, resentments, envy, blame of others, self-righteousness, educated arrogance, birth arrogance, skin color arrogance, political arrogance, and list goes on and on.

Wrong is wrong no matter what colorful paper we personally choose to wrap the explosive gift in. Sin is sin no matter how we franticly endeavor to redecorate it to our liking. We fool very few with out tireless efforts of making the truth.

I first drank at about age 10. I first used at about age 10. My last drink or use was on January 27th, 1990 when I was 32 yeas old. The simple math says that I used to escape reality for 22 years of my life. So even with the great milestone of being sober now 21 years, I have yet to balance the slate between sobriety and addiction.

Some people say that addiction of any kind is a disease. Some people say that addiction of any kind is a choice. I do not have an answer that will agree with every person’s premeditated opinion in this area. What I do know is that one in 3 or 4 people in the United Sates today have troublesome issues with addiction. That to me means what ever it is: It is an epidemic.

I am grateful that God loved me enough to open my eyes 21 years ago and allowed me to see that I did not have all the answers. I am grateful that God allowed me to see my human faults and failings. This has been the best gift of my collective life.

I am further grateful to God for allowing A.A. to lead me to Him. I am further grateful to A.A. for leading me to God.

Recovery has not ever – ever been an easy path to walk in life. It has been an up hill road laced with exotic boulders, beautiful quick sand, kitty cat clothed lion’s, beautiful thorns, and enticing prehistoric creators from hell: Many tears. Many scares. Many mistakes.

God, through A.A. and many people that actually cared about me as a person, human, worthy being (though many time times lacking complete understanding): Walked with me daily up the hill of recovery. For these few people I am eternally blessed. To these angels I say thank you from the deepest depth of my soul.

On Friday the 28th of January 2011, I will thank God for giving me a second chance at life that I richly do not deserve. I will honor Him at the 1:30 meeting of Rule 62, here in Payson, Arizona for loving me enough to take the time to open my eyes and bless me with a life so few have ever be graced. If you are able and willing, I invite you to share this time of gratitude with me in honor, respect, and love for a God that cares enough to actually change the lives of millions of people world wide: One Day at a Time.

I am thankful that God is not done with me yet.

Thank you for being a part of the magical miracle of my life.

Sober hugs,

Guy