“…..get up, stand up, stand up for your right!”

What does your bedtime routine look like? Personally, I prefer to read for a bit then go to bed early.  Geez though, you have be careful what you read as the day’s headlines are so damn depressing.

I was too lazy to get out of bed and walk twenty feet to the living room where I’d left my magazine so I picked up my phone.  The phone at bedtime! BIG MISTAKE. I made the all too familiar mistake of looking at my email and two hours later I was too worked up to sleep.

To educate myself about the Opioid Epidemic, I have Google alerts which provide me links to daily news articles.  Tragically there are so many daily alerts that’s it’s hard to keep up.  So why do I put myself there? Because I chose to and because I’m a Fierce Mama turned Advocate. I will advocate to reduce the stigma of substance use disorders and influence policy makers to provide more effective and affordable treatment options. Incarceration is not the answer.Just like Bob Marley said, “get up, stand up, stand up for your right.”  I have a right to be me and follow my passion just like you have a right to be you.

 I’m exercising my right to speak up. I believe one person can make a difference.

So why opioids? My family has been and continues to be impacted or shall I say devastated by my son’s misuse of opioids. It’s hell. Actually hell sounds nice compared to our story. It’s impossible to describe the gut wrenching nightmare we’ve endured. The pain has sent me to my knees a million times over.

Please note. I do NOT want your pity.  This is NOT why I’m writing about my experience.

I write because it helps me cope. It grounds me. Writing heals me.

“My Girlfriend Voice” arose from my frantic attempt to survive the chronic stress of my life. Not only did I have a child suffering from substance use and mental illness, I had another child who desperately needed his Mother’s attention and love.  I was depressed and ending a long term marriage. I dreamt of running away.

Now while I don’t claim to know everything, I know I am resilient. I am wise because I learn from my experiences. Yes, I make mistakes. I cry big ugly snotty cries and I swear like a sailor. I rage, although not as often. I have bad days just like everyone.

Despite all of “this crap”,  I’m happy and optimistic. It’s hard work but a terrific return on my investment. I am grateful for my deep compassion and perspective.

Thank goodness we gain wisdom as we experience pain!!

I’m willing to let you witness to my process. I’m willing to share my thoughts and my tools in hopes that these stories will help you. I don’t want you to ever feel alone and hopeless.

Do you think this is weird? Narcisitic? You have a right to your opinion! I respect that! I don’t have to defend my motives or intentions.

In the spirit of sharing, here is a post I wrote last week. (Pasted below) “My Girlfriend Voice” encouraged me to show up strong and empowered. Finally I am comfortable accepting the consequences of who I am!!!!!!! It’s the only way I want to live. Free and open hearted. Get up, stand up! Don’t give up the fight!

I’d love to hear from you. Have you made contact with your Girlfriend Voice? What’s she telling you?

Are you ready to accept the consequences of who you are?

From the heart,

Cara

No parent EVER believes that they may someday need drug treatment for their child. Why does Trump propose such nonsense with his health care proposal? It will be even more difficult and much more expensive to obtain medical assistance.


What if only 10% of cancer patients got treatment? I’m serious. I’m real serious because I’m livid.

Drug overdose is now the LEADING cause of death for 50 year olds and under yet no one wants to talk about it . We MUST talk about it!

1. I don’t want to hear from you if you accuse me of trying to take pain pills away from those patients in need. I’M NOT!

2. Don’t bother saying addiction is a choice. It is a disease of the brain! Would anyone want the life of an addict? Would you want to watch your child slowly self-destruct and then bury them?

3.  Addiction is NOT a moral failing. Period.

Pharma companies manipulated us into believing opioids were safe. It’s atrocious.  Despite the tragic numbers, and by the way there were more deaths last year than lived lost in the Vietnam War, there is too little regulation regarding writing opioid prescriptions.
While I’ve been writing this post 4 people have died of an over dose. 4 people!! That’s 91 people dying every day. It’s senseless.
We incarcerate instead of rehabilitate.
We shame and isolate addicts and their families. It’s cruel.
We look the other way instead of shouting enough is enough!

“As of 2014, Medicaid picked up the tab for 21 percent of substance-abuse treatment spending and covered roughly one-quarter of medication-assisted treatments. Democrats have said that Medicaid rollbacks that would follow a partial repeal of the Affordable Care Act could strip access to services that patients use to combat drug addiction.”

Please help me take stand.

1. Please call your senators and say no to HCA. (202) 224-3121 is the US Capital Switchboard

2. Please use social media to express your concerns.

3. Feel free to share this post.

If you’ve read this far, I thank you. I thank you for your willingness to understand this urgent medical crisis.

#opioids #heroin #painkillers #SUD #ServicesNotCells #DualDiagnosis #91DeathsADay #OpioidEpidemic #Fentanyl #Narcan #Suboxone #Methadone #BlackTar #MAT

©2011-2017MyGirlfriendVoice

There’s a New Voice in Town!

2017-05-24 22.13.36
I believe in getting familiar with all of the voices in my head.  You might remember me mentioning some of them in previous posts.  I “humanize” these voices – not sure that anyone ever told me to do that but it made perfect sense to me.  I want to meet “face to face” with Penny  Perfectionist, Bitchy Becky, Anxious Abbie and the rest of that motley crew who contribute to the negative banter. My Girlfriend Voice lives with those mean girls and helps to keep them in check.

This weekend a new Voice had her debut. Let’s call her Warrior Woman. Rather than REACTING,  she RESPONDS from a place of power and passion. She is not to be silenced or shunned.  She is a fierce Momma – unleashed to lead and educate. It’s extra cool that this happens to be my 100th post!  Continue reading

The Best Gift You Can Give Yourself

 

SELF-CARE!  Taking time out is necessary for our health.  Along with Pianist Daniel Roberts, I created a free Guided Meditation for my friends and family.  It is approximately 15 minutes of total body relaxation and it is free for you! Please fill out the request below and I will send you the download link.

Enjoy your much deserved time out and feel free to share this recording with those you love!

Warmest regards from my heart to your heart,

Caramia

A Picture is Worth a Thousand Good Feelings!

Last July, I participated in a free Facebook challenge and it wasn’t the ice bucket challenge!!  This was a challenge to “journal artistically” for 30 days.  Based on an email prompt you received daily from Artist Lisa Sonora, you would fill the page with the ideas inspired by the prompt. (getting started with a blank page is often the hardest part so the prompt was really helpful!)  You had complete freedom to do whatever the heck you wanted!  I admit, doing anything on a daily basis is hard, especially something  new AND in an area where you are weak but during July something magical happened.  I got FREE-feeling. I felt the freedom creativity invites in to your brain. Continue reading

Word of the Week (WoW): SURRENDER

Word of the Week: SURRENDER

səˈrendər/ (verb)

  • to yield or resign, to abandon or relinquish
  • to cease resistance
  • a courageous act

The word “surrender” is often interpreted as giving up, as weakness, as admitting defeat. Although this is one way to use the word, we will use it in a different way. Surrendering means letting go of your resistance to the total openness of who you are. It means giving up the tension of the little vortex you believe yourself to be and realizing the deep power of the ocean you truly are. It means to open with no boundaries, emotional or physical, so you ease wide beyond any limiting sense of self you might have. – David Deida
The word “surrender” is often interpreted as giving up, as weakness, as admitting defeat. Although this is one way to use the word, we will use it in a different way. Surrendering means letting go of your resistance to the total openness of who you are. It means giving up the tension of the little vortex you believe yourself to be and realizing the deep power of the ocean you truly are. It means to open with no boundaries, emotional or physical, so you ease wide beyond any limiting sense of self you might have. – David Deida

Rewrite? No, I’ll Redefine!

Author’s Note:  I found this blog on my computer, written last April, but not published until today.

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Writing has become difficult these days.  My brain races from topic to topic.  One thing I know is that it would be really easy to list the things I don’t have.

bad day

Continue reading

I Vant to be Alone

AH aloneThere are times when you just need to be alone. Decompress, evaluate, cry, binge on TV, sleep, eat cookies, fret, eat more cookies and then WRITE about it.

I’ve found myself requiring more solace than usual lately. Respite and quiet times are healing but to the outside observer, this may look like isolation. In a way I guess I do isolate myself but this is a necessary part of my self-care regime. BUT, if you don’t see me surface after a few days, please check on me. I may have been arrested and hello, there is no internet in jail. Continue reading