Why Me? Why Write? Why Now? Why Not?

The Me is Doug Curran…Douglas M Curran…Douglas Metcalf Curran. Douglas is Celtic for “dweller by the dark stream”. Curran in Gaelic means “little spear”. And Metcalf? Scottish for “I met a calf”? Hey I don’t know! I don't have all the answers. I'm still trying to get the questions right. At least I seem to be a spear fisher by some dirty water. Or maybe I'm a Druid. And that Curran thing may not even be as Irish as my Irish American wife, Colleen Fitzsimmons, hoped it was when she married me. Ok, I might be a Viking. It's like this. I was reading this book, The Lion Of Ireland, see, and the author, Morgan Llewellyn, recounts a last battle between Brian Boru and the Viking invader king, to regain Irish dominance again throughout the island and kick the fureners out. The Viking king's name? Olaf Cuaran? Cuaran? Curran? I'm a Viking now, so I am? And a descendent of one of those marauding and murderous pillagers and plunderers? I've never pillaged a thing in my life...well, maybe a book or two from somebody. I'm really just a gentle giant who loves books and music. Ok, I bought a sword recently, but only as a wall decoration to enhance my Irish family history coat of arms! Honest! Viking, Schmiking, so rest my Irish soul! Or my wife will have my old bald Irish head!

June 23, 2009

Sean's Sobriety...

Went to an AA lunch meeting with Colleen and Conn today, to support and celebrate Sean's five years of being clean and sober from pill addiction, something I mentioned in my recent post "Basketball Twists And Turns". Though pain killers were his downfall and he does attend NA, he likes this particular AA group. The recovery process is virtually the same 12-Step program though. These are sobering meetings too, no pun intended - lots of love expressed towards each other and hope to meet the everyday struggles against addiction. Sean shared first and was very emotional, as were we, realizing what he does to maintain his new life. Others shared from the depth and honesty of their hearts. It truly is a lot like attending an LDS testimony meeting we have at church once a month.

There was so much confirmation there of how powerless we all are against our addictions and compulsions and the need to turn it all over to a Higher Power if we are to overcome. And though we relapse at times, it's all part of the recovery and we all need support and acceptance, never judgment or rejection. For any addict, it's a lifelong project and whatever intervention is needed to get to the point where denial is overcome and total acceptance of the addiction is admitted, that's the most important start to a clean and sober life.

I admire Sean for his determination and perseverance, for the strength of his will - and though five to seven years is the most dangerous time for relapse, I feel Sean will stay strong. He has many admirers for his sobriety at his age - but he is always aware of pride and never being complacent, because it only takes one pill to put him right back where he left off. Kudos anyway Sean - we're all so happy for you!

I have to tell on him in one regard, though. He recently got another car, probably his third this year already, and each time he gets a better deal and a better car by trading up. But I couldn't help reminding him the other day that this is starting to look a lot like the sports shoe addiction he had when working in many different shoe stores as a younger man in the local mall. I think he had over fifty pairs of basketball shoes in his closet at one time. Later that same day as he left the house after doing some recording in his studio he has set up in our house, he said laughingly, "By the way, Dad - thanks for calling me on my crap." That's what addicts do in meetings if they feel someone isn't sharing honestly and really owning up to their addictions and the problems they cause. I guess we could all be called on our crap in some way or another.

Sean is an amazing musician too. He has learned how to write music and beats with a computer, a keyboard and a Garage Band program, as a way of supporting his recovery, something that is therapy for him, a way of writing down his experiences and thoughts about his struggles. But he also knows how to record all of this, has already released two cds and is continually writing and teaming up with other guys. He performs locally at times with his brothers and other musicians, not the least of which is his supportive younger brother Conn, also an amazing talent, a singer in the Sinatra/Connick/Bubles mode, but willing to do a little hip-hop with Sean so they can still hang out and stay close. Just put their names out there on YouTube and see what comes up!

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