November Gratitude List & Recovery Warriorship vol 1 no. 8
We’ve had an amazing Thanksgiving, thanks to the spirit of Brotherhood and our many supportive families. But we’re not going to rest on our laurels in the holi-daze for long! Before I get into our next batch of sober living program activities, I’d like to make a gratitude list. Why? It’s walking our talk. It’s one of the things we ask of our Members from time to time, and personally thanks-giving is a lifestyle. Yet the past several weeks there have been several standout people and organzations I want to publically acknowledge for their contributions to our Program and me personally.
- The family that supplied the turkeys, prime rib, and many of the dishes for Thanksgiving Day;
- The family that visited with us on Thanksgiving Day and supplied deserts, dishes, and great conversation!
- The Owner and Staff of The Road IOP– you are stand up professionals and your hearts are beacons of true hope;
- My Life Skills Director Lucian Siedler (who needs more titles) for being an ever present cheerleader;
- His sister Dr. Hillary Siedler for her warmth, jokes, innerconnection, and deep fried turkey!
- The parent that is the vigilant proofreader of this blog (you know who you are!);
- Buncombe County District Attorney Todd Williams for his big heart and care about people in recovery;
- Grace… not a person, but the action. It’s been plentiful, and from and to that Source- thank you (Meister Eckhardt: “If the only prayer you ever pray is ‘thank you,’ that would suffice”).
We’re starting our new group work of sober living program activieis today by learning the Haka, a movement of sacred warriorship of the Maori people of New Zealand. Many people know it through its performance prior to NZ matches in rugby and soccer. The process of learning our own Haka will take time. It is personalized to Firebird and the concept of men in transformation.
Manu ahi e rere a aianei! (Fire Birds are flying today!)
Ko I Te Tangata Hurihuri… (I am the changing man)
Everyone here- including staff- will be participating. I can’t tell you how excited I am about this… and even how excited some of the guys are. No, it’s not an instant “hit,” because it makes men vulnerable. That’s exactly the point. To face down fears, be vulnerable, and grow strength from that. The Members will be facing an opponent: fear, relapse, anxiety, trauma- that’s for them to identify. The Haka is a demonstration of strength, personal attributes, and the collective determination of the tribe. The opponent is then weakened, or backs off entirely. Below this post is the “Ka Mate” Haka of the NZ All Blacks Rugby Team, to give you a taste. When we’re ready to reveal the final product, however we do it, we’ll also be making a donation to a non-profit in NZ supporting substance abuse intervention for at-risk youth out of respect to the culture.
Ka Ora, Ka Ora! (It is life, it is life!)