219- Marty C- Genuine Love for Alcoholics Anonymous
Marty C 00:00
When I talk about my love and my passion for Alcoholics Anonymous, if John, if you'd asked me to come down there to Texas to do this air this show, I would have come, I would have walked, I would have hitchhiked, that would have got there. You're here. A lot of people say when I came to AA, or when it came to the doors of a it's a terminology that's very common. I never came to the doors of AA, AA kept coming to me. And I want to make that really, really clear. These old geezers who are sitting there watching survivor on the Tuesday night and snowstorm and all that would get up off their asses and they would get in their vehicles and they would drive to these institutions and they would put on ama meetings, they all they came to me who the hell am I to ever reject an opportunity to, to do a form of service? Who am I to do that? I can't I can't do that
John M 00:47
what Hello friends of Bill who and other friends you have landed on sober speak. My name is John M. I am an alcoholic. And we are glad you're all here, especially newcomers, newcomers that is both to recovery as a whole and newcomers to this podcast. Sober speak is a podcast about recovery centered around the 12 steps of Alcoholics Anonymous. My job here on sober speak is simple. My job is to provide a platform to the amazing stories of recovery all around us. Consider sober speak, if you will, your meeting between meetings. Please remember, we do not speak for a or any 12 Step community. We represent only ourselves. We are here to share our experience, strength and hope with those who wish to come along for the ride. Take what you want, and leave the rest at the curb for the trash man to pick up. Ola. K tell me amigos MB AmigaOS. That was the voice of my friend Mr. Marty see the you heard at the beginning of this episode here on New Year's Eve? Well, if you're listening to this on the day I release it, it will be New Year's Eve and so let me go ahead and say very quickly. Oh, I started to say Felice. No, no, it is Prospero en yo, and I believe that means happy new year. And I hope you had a police Navidad and I'm assuming that means Merry Christmas because that those two phrases are both in the famous song. Anyway, but that was the voice of Mr. Marty see that you heard at the beginning of this here episode. And you are going to hear so much more from Mr. Marty see in just a moment. But first things first, this episode is brought to you by anonymous. And Krista and Michelle and Jason and Trudy and Kate, and Gerhart and David. So you asked yourself what exactly did anonymous think Christa and Michelle and Jason and Trudy Kate and Gerhard and David do when they went to our website sober speak.com They put a little Debbie Debbie Debbie in front of it then you know with a little dot and then server speak calm and they clicked on the little yeller, donate tab and made a contribution to so thank you, anonymous, Krista, Michelle, Jason, Trudy Kate Gerhardt and David, this hair episode that is being released on New Year's Eve is coming right out to humans. They get very much I like a wearable. We're very very much Ah, why did I just go into an Elvis impersonation? Who knows? Really? Who knows? Who knows what goes on in this little pea brain. But nonetheless, this episode is brought to you I've already did all that. I I'm losing my brain here. Ah, Hi, John M. Just another Bozo on the bus will be the chairperson for this meeting between meetings and I am truly honored and privileged to serve all of you listening. So take a seat if you will around it if you can't see but I'm doing a little circle with my hands around the virtual table and let's get started. Remember now, four out of five sponsors surveyed recommend sober speak to help improve your conscious contact with your higher power. And we're glad you're all here. So I'm kind of looking around. Okay, so just so you know, I'm recording this actually
John M 05:19
right before Christmas. And, and I'm looking around and in Studio A here there is a big box with a bunch of I don't know bows and Christmas paper and tape and in all this inboxes and this is where now people come into Studio A when I say people my face, not just random people. But they come into Studio A here, as I have mentioned quite often is a multipurpose room. And they, I don't know, wrap stuff and do all this kind of my daughter and my wife are kind enough to do it for me so and you don't want to see my wrapping. But anyway, all that is around me and the lovely Mrs. M is downstairs right now, I don't know exactly how all this happens. But I know there are things that we do here. I say we it's really me it's my wife and the kids and and whoever else comes over a decorating Christmas cookies. So now you who are cooker types will will understand this. But I know that it takes a long time to make this particular dough that the cookies are made from that end up getting decorated after they're cooked. And this the this this cookie dough, all I know is I see the lovely Mrs. M down there. And by the way, sometimes if it's humid outside, I've never quite gotten this but if it's humid outside, the dough does not do very well. And then I see her down there beating on the dough with this big wooden they would roll a big wooden roller. And eventually these cookies getting made. But I know it's a very manual, an intensive process. And by the way, she is in a really good mood today. And and one of the reasons is is that she went and got her nails done now I've never quite understood this whole thing of you go to the nail shop and you come out of the nail shop and you're in a much you know, or you're in a great mood. It's not my thing, but I but But I get it and so anyway, what else is going on here and I'm hearing noise in the background. I don't know if you're gonna pick it up or not. But my son keep in mind once again he is he's 15 years old. And he's having a what he organized called a a secret Santas or a party in the background. And there are about five or six teenage boys in what we call the playroom. And I don't know exactly what's going on in there. But I know there is it's more than gift exchanging because they're there I walked in for a moment and they're wrestling and they're hopping up and down there makes a lot of noise. But you know, I love it. And you know, one of the reasons I love it is because I grew up in an atmosphere where that did not go on. And when I say that, inviting a bunch of kids over and having fun and being in a safe environment. And I'm just glad that they can all do that I really am. So that's about it. So in here's the other thing that I want to put out there. And that is I know that this entire time of year whether it be New Year's Eve or Christmas or even going into the new year, whatever whatever you have, can be a difficult for some and it has been very difficult for me in years past but I do want to say this. Don't get hung up, if you will, on all those Instagram photos and Facebook photos that you see of all the big happy families and all that stuff and kind of thinking If only that were me, because how do I put this? There are not normal people out there. You just have people that haven't shared with you yet.
John M 09:56
And just because it looks normal in a photo and It looks like something you would want to be part of. Most times when you start digging a little bit further their issues and there's problems and things that people are dealing with. And I just want to put that little word of caution out there. So wherever you are, just enjoy your holiday or wow, I guess this past the holiday now that you're listening to this, but you could still take that particular message into the new year. Alright, let's go ahead and talk about our special guest. And this is brilliant that we get to start the year off with a friend from up north a Canadian friend a. And this is Marty see and this is called genuine love for Alcoholics Anonymous. Marty is from Hamilton, Ontario, Canada, and got sober on July 16 of 1987. We'll talk about his time being locked up in a prison and as he puts it, he was framed again. Here's he was getting framed a lot. Marty shares openly about sexual abuse he experienced as a child, his motto was, Don't talk, don't trust and don't feel it coming from a background like that Alcoholics Anonymous was gonna be a change of pace, for sure. Before Marty is what he calls his 14 year experience, Marty was what he refers to as full time, middle of the road, unquote, in Alcoholics Anonymous, we almost get to Marty's 14 years experience sober in Alcoholics Anonymous, but we talk about that on Marty's next appearance on the podcast, we had to schedule some time to come back and be with Marty and I will be releasing that probably later in January or February sometime but anywhere but anyway. We will have plenty Oh, listener feedback at the end of Marty's discussion. So sit back, enjoy the ride. Without further ado, ladies and gentlemen, I present to you Mr. Marty. See, enjoy. Okay, everybody. So today we are sitting here with the one the only Mr. Marty see from the Great White North Mr. Deasy First thing first, why don't you go ahead, introduce yourself. Give your sobriety date if you would wish and let people know where you're sitting in this great land of ours.
Marty C 12:54
Thanks so much, John. i My name is Marty Cosgrove with Marty see I'm an alcoholic from Hamilton, Ontario, Canada, and very honored to have been asked here to be with you. I'm coming live from my office chair. And yeah, I mean, I don't know if you're just listening or if this is a visual, but I'm really happy to be here, John. No, they're
John M 13:15
just gonna they're just gonna hear the audio fact, you had just made a comment about that beaming light coming from behind you of Canada. And that again?
Marty C 13:28
Well, if anybody like we haven't had sunshine in six or seven days, and I would I set up this this camera. The light behind was coming through the window at an incredible rate. And it looks like it's got I've got all this radiance beaming from my head. But if you asked anybody and knows me, they say, Well, no, that's not true. That's an illusion. That's what we call an illusion.
John M 13:49
Well, that is God's Spirit sitting down upon us, though, for this particular interview, I'm sure.
Marty C 13:55
Thank you so much for that intro prayer. That was beautiful. Appreciate that. John getting Yeah, thank you.
John M 14:00
Yeah, you're quite welcome. So let's, let's talk a little bit about how we came together. Here. There is a gentleman who listens to the program. His name is Jason F. And Jason F reached out to me and he said, Hey, there's this guy named Marty see in Canada, and he is absolutely out of this world. I think you ought to listen to him. And if you listen to him, and you're agreeable, I take you out. I have him on the podcast. So I actually tuned in. And this rarely happens where I could do this, but I happen to be sitting at my computer that night, I was actually doing some post production work on one of the episodes of silver speak that I had to do and so I decided to kind of tune in and I had you going over on the left hand side of the of the monitor while I was doing my work. And lo and behold, I see Charlie P in there as well. He's on camera and he's listed again I go look there's Charlie is so I called you could use it you would surely have some sort of relationship and I think you had some sort of base knowledge of silver speak if I'm not mistaken. Explain that to me.
Marty C 15:10
Well, yeah, Charlie and I go back a few years, just to conferences. I've had him up here a number of times him and Katie to, to carry the message up here. And through that, as developed a wonderful friendship. I attend regularly the primary purpose group on Wednesday nights, which is the online meeting that they host in Texas. Fantastic meeting, just just a wash with with good, good stuff. And I just love them in. And so what happened was, I got linked on to silver speak and I said Charlie had done a couple few pitches here for you. And of course, I wanted to hear those so I listened to them in the and there's something that's inside of Charlie's just as a natural human being a real human being. That we got some good stories off off the grid, like out of the a community that we've done together. And he's he's just a real human being if you've never sat down and broke bread with Charlie P, it's a great idea that you do. It's a lot of fun to sit down and have a meal with the guy.
John M 16:07
Yeah, he's a good guy. And like me is a Dallas Cowboys fan. So he comes up here to Dallas
Marty C 16:12
gratulations you guys go You guys didn't win that Easter?
John M 16:15
Well, yeah, you know, so far, so good. It's a long season, as you know. Yeah. Yeah. So yeah, Charlie's a great guy. I absolutely love him. I'm gonna have Katie on more toward the end of the year as well. So I'm really looking forward to
Marty C 16:30
interrupt, interrupt her a lot. She likes that she really likes that. Just Just quickly, with respect to Jason, I met Jason a number of years ago at a men's retreat, and that my friend, Brian and I were co facilitating, and he is one of the most gentle, kindest men I've ever met. And what a what a very, like that subtle power in, in recovery in Alcoholics Anonymous. That's what Jason's about, you know, some of us guys get cast to the front with our big mouths and our big personalities and stuff. And Jason is just a lovely, lovely human being. And I so appreciate his support. He comes to our meeting every Thursday night, and I just so appreciate his support. So
John M 17:10
cool. So cool. I also want to talk about you know, we we were talking a little offline right before we started, I said, hold that because I want to get that on, on a recording, but you mentioned about your enthusiasm. I mean, first of all, I can tell just from talking to you on the phone, the first time we talked, and then doing this beforehand, and just our first few minutes here, you have an enthusiasm and a passion for life, and you just have a wonderful attitude. Right? Um, there's so many different ways to describe that. But talk about what you're talking about on the front end your your love for Alcoholics Anonymous, and just just put that into words.
Marty C 17:51
It's not always easy. Like, it's an inspirational thing through conversation, I'll get stimulated and then I go right off, you know, and oh, my God, it's like, it's like talking about your children. Nobody else really showed all your pictures of your little puppy, your kids. Nobody really cares. But you've got all of this. Wow. And the thing about, here's the thing that I can't, John, I'll start crying if, if I take enough time with it is that it's getting worse. I'm 34 years sober. My sober date is July the 16th 1987. And it's getting worse. When I say worse, I mean, better, worse, worse, better. It's like, I'm a madman for this stuff. And, and I have no it's like it's not cultist, or it's not. It's not driven by it's just, it's this. It's just power. And I am never ever closer to God than I am when I'm with another alcoholic. So being around AA and NA and, and this, this pandemic, and everything has cost me somewhat because I've always been very close to other alcoholics in our community. And but man, oh man, opening up the book into the literature, talking about recovery principles, and watching people's lives come back together over and over and over again. It says it's something that you don't want to miss, I'm going to tell you. It even goes it goes further than that. For me, I'm blown away by it. It's almost like there's nothing that gives me the kind of inspiration that an Alcoholics Anonymous activity does nothing. Nothing.
John M 19:23
Yeah, I just got back from a meeting right before this morning. We're recording on a Saturday right now. So everybody knows and it's about 130 Here my time 1:30pm And I went to a meeting at 12 o'clock and there were there were two or three people there one was a I'm just gonna go ahead and say their names because there's first names that I don't think that care at all. A one was named Mary, as she's getting her chip. Tomorrow, her one year chip. There was another gentleman named Brad, who was getting is eight months. And then there was another guy in there kind of a newcomer, his name is Tony. And he was sharing about the gifts of sharing his sobriety and being able to go out to a treatment center. And I found myself getting, like, teared up. And I'm going, you know, and I, Marty have a silver since 1989 By the grace of God, and I think what I mean, when is this gonna stop? I mean, you know, I'm still here getting teared up. And this still means so much to me. So I can I can so much relate to what you're talking about. Okay, Morty see? So let's get into a little of your story or a lot of it, we shall see. But why don't you take me back? I guess, you know, to the beginning where you came from, you know, you know what you were like, right? And then what happened? And then we'll get into what you're like now?
Marty C 20:53
Yeah. Yeah, I won't stay. I won't stay too long there in the formative years, I think I think, you know, I have this sandy beach became a pretty good friend of mine. And in one conversation, Sandy and I were having, he said to me, the older I get, the better my childhood was. And I was only there's 10 years ago, 12 years ago, and I wasn't very in tune with what he was talking about. And you fast forward. Now I get what he's saying. You know, when I first came to Alcoholics Anonymous you to thought I was raised in hell. And because it just that seemed to be what everybody was talking about. 1986 8788 was around abuse in the boat, all these kinds of things. It was our generation. I don't know what the hell it was. But it was pretty common. So I would have been the poster boy for the Children's Aid Society up here. You know, Family Services, I would have been the poster boy for that. That's not my life. That's not what happened when I was coming up my family. My dad's an alcoholic, my mom's this person has never taken a drink. What I knew was that alcohol was the most important thing in our home growing up. Absolutely. Undeniably, there wasn't the relationship between my mother and father. And it wasn't my father's relationship with us kids. And it wasn't my, the most important thing in our home was alcohol. My mother was either ardently and vehemently against it. And my father was very strong proponent of it, nothing I ever witnessed. I never witnessed it, let my father down. It was always there. He went through job and financial difficulties, he went through difficulties in his relationship with my mother and that but the vodka was always there. And, and so I watched this positive love relationship between my father and substance, alcohol. I tell the story sometimes watching you know, wrapped up just come through this fairly quickly, just for people's identification is that when the family was going on vacation, or a trip of some type, they would be there, we got four children, my older brother and my younger brother, younger sister, and the car would get packed. And the way it will get packed is first of all, we'll be all the kids clothes, and it'll be all the kids sporting goods, gloves, baseball bats, these kinds of things that that hotkeys and wouldn't the stuff go in the car and then my mom's clothing would go in, and then my father's clothing would go in, and my dad would come out and he'd have a cooler. And in the cooler, be a couple bottles of whiskey and cut balls, vodka and some beers and maybe a little love food. So there'd be some meat in there that he was going to take to wherever we're going. And he'd walk out with this cooler, will it be no room out would go the kids toys, oh, we'll go. And the cooler was coming. And so the relationship with alcohol, I was always a witness to the priority. It was always a priority. And I took my first drink at 12 and a half years old and my life changed forever. I had no idea that I was so disturbed or broken inside until I wasn't anymore. You know, I had this life where I swam, and I fished and I jumped off a ropes into beautiful like, I lived in a gorgeous place in northern Ontario. And I played hockey at a decent level and I I excelled in school and, and this was this is the sort of the life I was growing up as a kid. A lot of friends and again, really like in school and stuff. So there were no problems there. I took a drink at 12 and a half and I felt normal. I had no idea I was at such unease and disease until I took a couple of bottles of beer. And you know, I got violently sick. I just shoved them back and I got really, really sick at puked all over the place. I woke up the next morning and thought that was the single greatest thing that's ever happened to me in my life. And I knew that I would be doing that again. And that that's kind of how it took off for me. You know, I had no you know, I came through this at eight years old I was sexually abused I never talked about it never was a part of my life. I don't remember feeling defective because of that. I do remember that when my teenage years I used to lay awake and think to myself What was that I was putting out there to make that guy think it was okay to do that to me. I remember that disturbing feature when I was on on Enesta sized by anything right? And drinking was my thing. Although I came up in a culture of strong drug use. Drinking was my thing. I loved alcohol. And before all else, alcohol. So let me ask
John M 25:07
you something real quick. So in regards to the sexual abuse, because there's gonna be a lot of people that are listening in that, you know, say, God, that happened to me as well. So in this is probably part of your story later but as long as you brought it up now, when when did you start to deal with that as an adult? Was it in Alcoholics Anonymous? Was it before that was a counseling? Take me through that journey there?
Marty C 25:37
Well, it was dutiful obli dutifully sort of suppressed. I mean, it was no I didn't know that, again, all of a lot of my life reactions after that were were string to that I had no idea that and, and when I talk about that 12 and a half year old experience, I had no idea how broken I was until I was fixed. So who knew? Right and then alcohol treated everything that was wrong with me. And so I go through the years and, you know, as the story goes, lots of trouble getting into lots of difficulty with human relationships, and used to get framed a lot. Spend a lot of time in custody, and custodial moments, I would have all this time to think about things right. And I would have to say, to be quite a skip right up to your question. A 14 year sober I met a man at around at around those 14 years sober. And there were accounts, there was counseling experiences, there was there was some acknowledgement that something had happened when I was a kid, the seals and all the people in my life that became aware of this always look to that as being the defective part of myself that can never allow me to be happy, joyous and free. And I bought into that shit when it was suitable. I bought into that stuff when it suited me. I played that card. When I was almost in prison, my adolescence in my young adulthood was all in prison. So that was a common thread that would always come back up. And 14 years sober, I met the man that I'll talk about in a little while to set me on the course of doing these 12 steps and then taking these 12 steps. And getting into inventory for the first time. For the first time of 14 years sober. I did a bit book inventory. My story is like Charlie's at 16. And I thought I was in the middle of a I thought I was like smack dab in the middle of a having a large and charge fully experienced and a 14 years sober, I got woken up and directed into inventory. And in that inventory, the way it's properly done. And if you ever have me back, and I'll do I'll do a talk on adjust inventory is that not only did the the abuser come up in the last column, I was able to reconcile so many things about me and the things that I had done and the things that I had hurt other people in the ways that I had hurt other people was so able to reconcile it. And when you stopped me there and asked me to sort of slit stay on that for a few minutes. Because there's listeners out there, it doesn't matter where I do this, John, I have conversations with people at depth, a lot of men come to me and talk about being hurt in that way. And I'm going to again, fast forward to the healing. It was proposed to me a long time ago that my worst difficulty or the most significant difficulty in my life would become my main asset and helping others that as a tool. I am so at ease and comfortable with all of that I am never, I've never been destroyed by it never. And it has become an absolute tool to pull me closer to men who've suffered similar difficulty. And I'm here to say, on the airwaves, that you can be beyond that 100% And maybe even more, and I'm getting goosebumps. And again, I can be brought to tears and talking about the power of this stuff, the way it changes things. It's unbelievable. And it all has to do with the process of steps four through nine, all of it. You know, it's never been a part of my life since and it's become my best tool and working with others.
John M 28:57
Do you remember a time when you're going through that process after 14 years sober and us and you thought to yourself? Wow, I can talk about this now. There's there I'm not carrying around the shame that I want carrying around.
Marty C 29:12
Yeah, but again, awareness being awoken. It's like if I asked you what you were thinking about last night while you were sleeping, you wouldn't have any answers from you might come up with a couple of real cool dreams. Some of them maybe not even appropriate for you. However, you wouldn't really be able to tell me what you're thinking about. It was not there John that's that's the power of the ego and the power of the mind. It wasn't there. You know, I it was an incident that took place and I could never be brought to the agony of the pain or the shame and none of that stuff. I can never be brought to that I don't know if my ego protected me from it. I'm not sure but the bottom line is is remember I was saying like there were times all growing up in my teen years and when I was in prison and stuff where I would lay awake at night and wonder what was I doing that made that guy think that was okay to do that to me and and I would never be disempowered that way again, never, not in any way, not even not sexually or any other way I became not a bully. But I, I would crack first and ask questions later, I became a very aggressive individual.
John M 30:14
So let's go back to that I kind of brought you to a point that, and I've heard you talking about being in custody and laying and jails and all that sort of stuff. So something happened between 14 and whenever you got to the rooms of Alcoholics Anonymous. So I know you're taking me through in first before you do that. Let me just read a little announcement here real quick. We will be continuing our conversation with Marty see in just a moment, just to reminder, you were listening to sober speak, you can find us on the worldwide web at sober speak.com. You can also find the donate button on our website, which you can use if and only if the spirit moves you to do such please keep in mind. This is a podcast funded by you the listener All right now back to Mr. Marty car. So take me to, you know, whatever you want to talk to me about during those sounds like fairly tumultuous years.
Marty C 31:10
They certainly weren't for my parents and for anybody who loved me. I mean, there's no doubt about that. I, I think what happened if it probably it will 15 years old Johnny sort of rolled it up and gave up. And I remember thinking to myself, that I was powerless, then I didn't have the language to it. But I remember I was I was puking, and it was bleeding. hanging onto the toilet. It was five o'clock in the morning. I remember thinking I'm never ever, ever going to do that again. But I also remember that afternoon getting jacked up again. And remembering that I had made a commitment in the morning, where did that go? I remember that experience. Like, I guess I'm doing to live this way forever. And that that happened a lot in my life where I always felt I was condemned to live a certain I remember being 19 years old and I was in a holding I was in the hole in prison again. And because I don't play well and play nice with others and I'm in the hole again. And thinking to myself is this it, I'm never going to know the level of a woman, I'm never going to have a family, I'll never have a career this is going to be it for me prison. And I will condemn myself then to the to the behaviors and sort of the modifications that were necessary to survive in the environment I was in. And again, it was a lash out strike first, sort of demeaning, and it just kept getting me in trouble. Here's the important thing that I want to put out here for people is this is that when I talk about my love and my passion for Alcoholics Anonymous, if John, if you'd asked me to come down there to Texas to do this air, this show, I would have come I would have walked, I would have hitchhiked, I would have got there. i You're here a lot of people say when I came to AA, when I came to the doors of a it's a terminology that's very common. I never came to the doors of AA, AA kept coming to me and want to make that really, really clear. These old geezers who are sitting there watching survivor on the Tuesday night and snowstorm and all that would get up off their asses, and they would get in their vehicles and they would drive to these institutions. And they would put on ama meetings. They all they came to me. And you know, who the hell am I to ever reject an opportunity to, to do a, you know, a form of service? Who am I to do that? I can't I can't do that. So. So that's an important piece in a 17 I met my first Alcoholics Anonymous member at 17 years old and said this story, I'll tell it another time. Awesome human being, but nothing to do with me. I mean, I said to the guard, I said Who the hell was that? He said, those were the amas don't don't let them weirdos in here again. Like, I don't know why he came to see me. But you know, I fast forward to 19 years old and I'm in a federal penitentiary again, framed again. And I'm sitting there doing time for a few years. And Alcoholics Anonymous is Everywhere I look, you know, it's it's all over the place. There's literature, there's, there's all kinds of stuff, you know, and I have no interest in, in in recovering from a disease or a problem that I don't even think I have, you know, I have this anger problem. I was told this as a young kid that I have a temper and all that kind of stuff that was told that. So I thought that was my issue. And, you know, the CEOs and I was talking about the sexual abuse, the CEOs always wanted to talk about that. You know, that's what they want to talk about. Every time I got into trouble or something like that, within three minutes of any interview by a psychologist, psychiatrist to any any commanding officer, and they would look at my file. Mm hmm. Yes, yes. Yeah, I see here that you were you were hurt when you were a boy. And I see what you mean. I understand that you were you were sexually abused when you're eight years old by a guy down the street. Yeah. Do you want to talk about this? No, no, no one talks about that. And they would say okay, no, that's okay. At your time in the context of the interview would totally change. I had just either broken beaten somebody or I'd been involved in some sort of scam or some sort of thing that went on that should have been punishable, seriously punishable. And it would totally change the context of every single interview I ever walked in and out of. So it became an ace and it became an ace up my sleeve, it became, you know, my hidden sort of gem that I could pop up, I'm going to tell you something else, is that when I talk when I've been, it's not, it's not a coincidence, I end up in the field I work with, I work with men and and women who have been significantly sexually abused. And I've heard stories that make my hair curl. And I don't identify with them for the ongoing longevity of their abuse and the abusers themselves and, and what it was that they experienced, it's like, Oh, my God, my heartbreak from my empathy is there. But man, you know, I have it's not like you can compare one to the other, our messages to ourselves, were all were the same. But you know, back then I don't want to get rude.
John M 35:57
So real quick, how did you end up getting into that field?
Marty C 36:03
Well, I got injured, I was trying to avoid it. I always wanted to be a schoolteacher, but you know, long. Below, people don't want me around their kids, I don't know. But the bottom line is that I got injured. Landscaping, I was making good money at a good living. I was I was a little girl and I was I'm sober and happy, and I got injured. And all these psycho vocational testing kept pointing to the helping professions. So I got retrained and went back to school, and always stayed in university and had university courses going on. So I became educated and fell into this incredible domain. And I was in private practice. For many years, I worked at the detox for the first year, probably the best job I've ever had, as far as going to work, and I just, I mean, when we get the opportunity to serve, in even in our employment, not as an AEA member, but just as a human being. It's quite a, it's quite a wonderful thing. And then I went into private practice. And it was very lucrative for a number of years. And then I heard about this opportunity, which is the Omni addiction specialist for St. Joseph Hospital here in Hamilton for the outpatient program called act assertive community treatment. And I work with people on the street with alcohol, and drug addiction and mental illness. And so that's, that's how, and almost everybody, almost all of them have been at one time or another perpetrated upon. I mean, it's just no doubt about it. We go through it a lot, you know. And so that's, it just ended up there. So I've been doing that for 30 years. And it's like, an insane thing with my life. I love this job. I do this for free, man. And it really pisses off all the sort of high union nurses. When I say that, because they're always so tired and fatigued. I get up in the morning. I'm singing doo doo doo doo. Another day to be of service another day to be helpful. Isn't this lovely guys?
John M 38:07
Okay, so I got you off track as I do a lot. Okay, so let's go back. You are in and out of sounds like you're in and out of jail quite a bit. And I mean, take me through that period. What else do you want to cover there?
Marty C 38:27
Well, I just don't want to say that. Okay, let's go right to the chase. Let's cover it's just so 19 to 23 years old. I'm in a federal penitentiary and Alcoholics Anonymous comes again and I meet a guy named Steve and Steve's this square John, and for sake of a better term, he's just a guy who's never been in trouble and, and he has a sponsor who said to him, and I don't even know what a sponsor is, at the time, when he says, the sponsor guy told me I got to come down here and do this, you know, put on coffee and all that kind of stuff. We have this conversation him and I and he's just a really, really nice man. He doesn't ask me what I'm inside for. He doesn't ask any of those questions. He's just a really nice man. I don't know any nice man. I am a man and a good guys. You know, I don't trust them. But he's just a really nice gentle guy. And that's not what I'm accustomed to or we're sitting right here he and he hoodwinked me and then a few other guys and going to this round up. It was a 13th institutional conference of Alcoholics Anonymous, the days in in Kingston, Ontario, which is the Motherland for all of our federal penitentiaries. And he invites us to go to this conference, and we go, and I had an AA experience there, my first one, and it was when the chairperson said Is there anybody out there doing time on April passion and please stand up and vote 14 or 15 minutes stood up and all you weirdos clapped? And then he said, Is there anybody out there who's ever done times will turn people in? And anybody out there who's ever done time, could you please stand up and the whole room stood up and the chairs pushed back on the floor and made that creaking sound? And there's just like this. And everybody just there was this moment of silence. Like you could hear a pin drop, and this young girl screamed out with joy and everybody he just laughed and screamed and fell into each other's arms and I thought, oh shit. I'm one of them. Oh, no, not the A's these are my people. No
John M 40:14
this guy's anything but this.
Marty C 40:17
Yeah. So So that happened. And of course, I went back to the like there's this there's a little story around that to some of the time and I came back to the understanding maybe what what I was and perhaps where I belong, there was an openness there were okay. All right. You know, it wasn't like I was seeking any any truth or any need. I went there for a purpose. I wanted to get a lady. I don't know where I was gonna take your jackals would have interfered a tad. But when I when I had that experience there and it was it disturbed me. And I thought, Okay, I'm going to look at these steps things that they were talking about, right? And then they were on the wall in the same room. I've been in for three years working out and I had never even read them. And I saw an esteemed guy said those of us 12 steps of AA and I looked and I thought yeah, one Yeah, drink is bad man. I drink bad shit happens. That's not good. Step two, and now you're getting weird. And step two, step three, you're not even hiding it anymore. You're going to capital G that ain't happening. Step four. I could do inventory. I'm not writing anything down but I can mentally do some inventory. Step five. I'm not telling anybody. Don't talk Don't just don't feel those are my rules. Step six and seven defects. Okay, I knew yours were but I didn't even understand what defects and shortcomings were. I mean, step eight and nine. I'm not paying back the money. That's ridiculous. Whoever came up with that idea that needs to be relooked at step 10 Very strange, Stan tenza Very strange step and it happens to be my way of life these days. But it was a very strange step to look at on the wall and step 11 No, you're not hiding it at all anymore. You're going right for Jesus Come on stop at jumping for Jesus I'm not doing it in step 12 Yeah, I can help people. So I ran around the institution for the next year and a half doing step one four and 12 and nobody got sober nobody got sober and I got drunk few times inside none of the info but nobody got sober around me but I got a parole I got my my sentence was reduced through an appeal and I got a parole and automatically bang I was out into the community and that's when my a life started. I went to my first real Alcoholics Anonymous meeting and I began to experience the fellowship of Alcoholics Anonymous this crazy crazy aspects of the first guy they picked me up was in a great big white van he had like, knee high Wellington's on covered and cheap shit come on let's go to be a me going anywhere with you. And then the guys in the halfway house are saying yeah, that's our ride to the meeting. file and file into the van with this guy met the meeting. And I haven't I have another experience that this is where I belong. I can't believe it these guys are lunatics. I can't believe I belong here. And then here's my story. John, I fell in love with a rake den it's never changed and for the next five years, I met a guy Scottish guy who said I'm new sponsor son. And I said I'll come I don't get the so when the be my sponsor says you're too stupid. And the next five years that was in his back pocket and in my life my life had changed you know when I talk about all that place when I say changed um this is what this is the delusion I saw all the all the trouble stopped all the outside trouble stop. No more prisons no more. This my family three and a half years in my family had me there for Thanksgiving and Christmas. Three and a half years in, you know, I'm working in them. But I'm back and being educated. I'm in school, I'm in in relationship I, I have a car, the license plates exactly the same on the front as it is in the back. Miracles now I'm talking miracles. And if you heard my mother, she would come to the AMA's. And she was oh my god, I love what you guys have done to my son. It was on AA had saved her son's life. And I bought that line of shit to there's no doubt about it. The trouble stopped. But inside I was restless, irritable and discontent all the time. And now what would manifest inside of me whether it was sexual behaviors, or whether it was the lying or stealing or dishonesty or, or gambling or whatever it was, you know, I never turned to drugs or anything like that. But, but it would always be it would manifest in some lunacy. You know? It could be playing hockey eight times a week it could be constant misdirection, you know, and, and it would show up in the most bizarre ways as it tells us in our book, it shows up in very bizarre ways. Now, this is not on Alcoholics Anonymous, just on Alcoholics Anonymous in my area. There was no message of Alcoholics Anonymous in my area. It was don't drink and go into meetings and hit as many meetings as you can do 90 and 90 CFAES for you that that was the message that that's the message for the new guys. I'm smack dab in the middle of loan so I'm doing as the Romans do. I love a and I'm in all the time. I love meetings. I didn't ever rejected a meeting. I love Being so I'm going all the time, I get involved in service and service commitments around in a district. And, and GSR, and I'm involved. I'm a member of this, this, I am a member of this community, I'm a Hellraiser to win. And then our Roundup is going on. And I'm the chairperson of our big roundup that we have here. And everybody knows me, I
Marty C 45:18
got a big mouth, I got a stable a sponsor, these are the most nutty guys and all of a I sponsor them all, exactly the way that I wish sponsored step one, and two, there wouldn't be a term for it, if there wasn't such a thing. It's called to stepping. It's in our literature, don't drink and help people. And for the next several years of my life, up to 14 years, I had an AA experience that was full time. middle of the road, full time, middle of the road, not middle of a middle of the road. So that that was my that was my life. That's what happened. And then And again, I want to be very, very clear about this. There was no contest in my delusion. There was nothing that I loved a I would say I spoke at roundups conferences I was I was so on fire for God and my years 10 nine through 1213 that I was began to become the closing speaker at a lot of conferences and roundups on the Sunday morning me. Me Why, because I got a big mouth and I read a lot. And so I began to to be this spiritual speaker on Sunday mornings, which is kind of an insult a now I've been at some Sunday morning meetings that have been magnificent. Now before I say anything else, I didn't talk about this. But on July the 16th 1987, which is my driving, I was in a jail cell. And again, again, I was going back to prison. And the power and the pain of my life and decisions and the way it has unfolded for me, brought me to my knees and that jail cell and I screamed for help. And that help came in the form of a power that had no ever no relationship with ever. Marty man talks about a Bill Wilson talks about it. There are witnesses to these kinds of things having every time I'm in a big venue talking about one or two, three people come to me afterwards and said, I heard the voice. I screamed, and I don't want to live like this. I don't want to live like this anymore. And I heard a voice say you don't have to, you don't have to live like this anymore. So that was my experience that drove me into the heart of Alcoholics Anonymous. So for many years, in my conversation in my talk, I would talk about that message. That was the message. That is not the a message. And that was the problem is that I had this stablest guys around me, but none of them were getting sober. I wasn't carrying a message of depth and weight. I wasn't carrying a 12 step message. I was carrying a message that said, you need God and you better get him get better. You know, I don't know what you're gonna do, but you're gonna have to suffer a great deal. And then, and then maybe it'll happen for you. Let's cross our fingers and hope for the best. And that was the a message that was involved in here. You know, there'll be people saying all the time, I'm always recovering. You know, I'm always I'm only an arm's length away from a drink, all that kind of horseshit. Those were common things that were said in the environment that I live in. They were cute, quippy little a things like the slogans and stuff like that I don't have a problem with these things. It's just, it's not a you know, it's not and and then I'll take you like, I'll take you to the year 14, where it starts.
John M 48:16
So what happened when we got to 14 years that was so significant. Okay, so
Marty C 48:21
in that time, in that time, I had, I had a partnership for daughter's education, career money home, I had a standing in Alcoholics Anonymous. And again, on the outside looking in, you'd think this is incredible. How does this guy go from this scrap pile? To this? How does that even happen? Now I know in my heart that it was a revolutionary God thing, I know that I have been moved by some sort of spirit to this place. But that's not evident in anything that I'm talking about. I don't have a 12 step message. So I would say in the first little while that I was here, maybe the first five or six years of Alcoholics Anonymous was about not drinking. It really was about not drinking, you know, most meetings and dimensions of my alcoholism in my recovery talk was all around not drinking the next few years, and they had a little girl there, man, there's
John M 49:12
so let me dive into that real quick. So I think I understand what you're talking about. But I just want to make sure and you even referenced it in some of your previous comments. But are you saying that, like, you weren't making amends? You weren't doing daily inventory? You were doing the prayer? Is that kind of what you mean by that? Yeah,
Marty C 49:35
there were no specific directions to my, this is where the delusion came from, is that I belong to a 12 and 12 meeting. I attended tons of 12 and 12 meetings, I didn't see a big book anywhere. For the first several years I was in recovery. But I will go to these 12 and 12 means we would read a step. And in reading this step, I would identify with some of the outcomes that were described. When Bill Wilson wrote the essays about the steps I would identify with the outcomes. And so I would think to myself, Well, I must have done that. Now that's gonna sound very silly to the listener, how could you be so duped? I dare say I'm not the only one, right? I am not the only one since the mid 70s 10s, or hundreds of 1000s of Alcoholics Anonymous members have not taken the steps. Why? Because they've been in 12. And 12 meetings thinks that thinking that that's taking the steps on the other side of it. So I would read the nine step and the 12. And 12 said, Well, my family's accepted me back, people are talking to me today, I must have made amends. Okay, those are the amends. It's, it's you know, now, we all know that if you look at our big book of Alcoholics Anonymous, there's a very different set of directions, they're destined to sit and wait and then identify the outcome, that that's not what it's recommended. There's no directions in the 12 and 12. But you can read the 12 and 12. And say, which is a brilliant document, you can read it and say, oh, man, there's so much depth as Sandy would say, there was there's so much depth in this stuff, I'm going to continuously be mining all the time, to find the, you know, the power that I seek, I'm going to be constantly seeking. And this is a beautiful thing. That's why I think I get more charged about it. You know, it's okay, in endpiece,
John M 51:18
I completely get that. Okay, so here's what I run into, with guys like you that I really enjoy talking to, and I want to go more in depth and all that sort of stuff is that we have a tendency to run out in time. Okay. So I think what we're going to do, if you're okay with it, Morty is I know that I got you off track several times. And we're just kind of now getting to the point to where you are having your second wind, or your second coming, or whatever you want to call it. You're reinvigorated for alcoholics anonymous in a different way. And you're going to have a different experience. Yeah. And I want to come back and I want to cover that in depth. And then I probably want to talk about some of the other steps as well. Will you be good coming back with me at some other time? Sure.
Marty C 52:06
Absolutely. Absolutely. Be on it. I just hope this doesn't leave any sort of void. I'd be honored to come back.
John M 52:11
Oh, no, no, no, no, that's okay. And people could pick up right there. They're smart enough to go back and listen to the other episodes and put them all together. And, and you know, and here's what it is. And I do this with people all the time is that you know, this is all in God's hands and that I, I don't know who's listening and exactly when they're listening and what they need to hear. But I just trust that between you and me and doing the prayer and you know, just putting this out there in the universe, that God will do with this what he needs to do. And I'm more than happy to do that. So, alright, let me go ahead and read page 164, from the big book, to round us out here. If I can find it. There we go. It says abandon yourself to God as you understand God. Admit your faults to him and to your fellows. clear away the wreckage of your past. give freely what you find and join us. We shall be with you in the fellowship of the Spirit, you will surely meet some of us as you trudge the road of happy destiny. May God bless you and keep you until then, Marty see once again from Ontario, Canada, right is Hamilton Ontario.
Marty C 53:30
Yep. Prince George group in Hamilton. Prince George's login for the group's probably Yeah, group of people. And
John M 53:38
well, thank you so much. God bless you. We'll look forward to getting back again and you have a good rest of your day. Okay. Thank you, man. Thank you so much more DC for joining me and dish and sharing your story with the sober speak audience. It is so much appreciated. And as a reminder, folks, we will have the follow up to Marty see part two of his story if you will, coming up on a future episode. Be sure to stay tuned. Now remember, we do not want you sharing your gossip or your STD but we do want you sharing this episode with a friend or family member it may be just what they need today. Go ahead and pause that device you're on and send it to that friend or family member as you are able don't do it while you're driving. Okay. Now on to a little bit of listener feedback. Krista writes in a Krista says Good morning, John. Good morning, Krista. She says I cannot thank you enough for the gift of sober speak I am a grateful seven year member of Al Anon who often relates more to a members then allanon These days, as I've heard many others say on your podcast Yes, I have heard that. She says, I listen to you in the car every day when I'm getting ready in the morning. And when I'm going to sleep at night, I'm currently going through my steps again using the take the 12 website, which was suggested by one of your guests. It is awesome. Yes, that was Mr. Rick W. I'm glad you're enjoying that. She says David, Bill C, Matthew M. Julia, Gary K, and so many others inspire my spiritual journey. God speaks to me through my fellows at AA meetings and through you and your guests. Most recently, I've enjoyed listening to Don M and his talk, courtesy and persistence. This man seems to embody the prayer of St. Francis, the sweet interchange between you and Dawn was such a blessing. Truly a gift from God. This note is long overdue. Thank you for sharing your funny, kind and compassionate Self. You are an amazing host. I'm excited to see how God will continue to use you and help myself and others to recover in 2020 To love Krista. Krista, that's so sweet. Thank you for your for writing in. Love back at you. You anyway, that just it just blew my mind. And I'm I am excited to see how we can all recover together in 2022 as well. God bless you Christa. I really appreciate her and I appreciate allanon Gloria right says she says Hi, John M I want to thank you so much for reminding me of allanon Here we go Alan on again. She says I've been actively attending meetings virtually and in person for the past month, my life has changed drastically with this newfound knowledge that allanon offers. I learned to let go and let God I learned to focus on myself. Stay in my own lane. Don't worry about what a step my ex is on. Very good. I'm glad to hear that.
John M 57:31
Don't expect any apology or anything from him. Stay in my own lane and work my own allanon steps and program and most importantly, let God heal me. I am not alone. I have found peace and serenity that I have never felt before. And I am enjoying every moment of it. A big weight has been lifted off my shoulders. I can finally breathe. Thank you, John. You're the best. Keep spreading your knowledge with your podcasts. Merry Christmas. GLORIA Lee will Gloria God bless you I sure do appreciate you writing in you are the best and Merry Christmas back at you. And finally, one more here, Shawn posted or excuse me, Shawn post in the super secret Facebook group. And by the way, I don't think I mentioned this on the front end of the podcast but if you want to be in the super secret Facebook group, just go to your Facebook applicatio and search up the sober speak secret group and then ask for admission young and we will get you in there. Anyways Sean post in Facebook, he said I started listening to your podcasts around January 2020. I would smoke a joint while listening. Go figure. Then the the pandemic came along with Zoom meetings in your podcast became and still is a main staple in my sobriety. I listened to transitions daily every morning, as well because of you on the drive to work as part of my morning routine. I have listened to every single one of your podcasts and a few of them more than once. Thank you so much for what you do, Shawn, God bless you and I'm glad for those of you who are wondering what he's talking about. If you just look up trans if you do a search for transitions daily, you should see that come up. It's actually a podcast is like a short meditation that you can listen to every day. Additionally you can go to I have this write a daily emails.com and subscribe. Hold on. I'm going to make sure not daily emails. I know I should really do this beforehand. I know I know. Oh, hold on a daily. I can't I can't spell a daily emails and there it is. Yeah. Oh, I think if you go to a daily emails, it takes you right to transitions daily. So anyway, go ahead and go there and you can subscribe to both their podcast and their daily emails as well. I receive that every day. And, and many, many mornings, I use that for my morning meditation. So anyway, alright everybody, may God bless you and keep you and Till then, keep coming back. It works if you work it. I take this one week at a time. Hopefully we'll see you next week. Bye bye.