5 Carrie, CODA & Community Service


The next year Carrie rode with Dad and Me to the family reunion and lent her BMW to our brother and his son who in turn drove her car to the reunion and the moment Andy and his son crossed the Arizona state line they were pulled over for speeding, expired tags and upon inspection by the Police it was discovered that Carrie had no insurance and the registration though not in the car was still listed in Dave’s {her ex-husband} name. 


They could have ended up in the crowbar motel compliments of Carrie who frantically called her AAA agent who informed her there was nothing she could do. After some conversation by and between the Officer and Andy’s son the Police issued them a warning ticket and allowed them to continue their trip. That’s my sister Carrie aka the {RTB}-Roulette Time Bomber.


Carrie while once living on the lake bought a boat with our brother Robert and though she had docking privileges the boat never left his driveway. I have invited her multiple times to join us in the rooms of recovery but she rejects my invitations as inconsequential in her daily wanderings like a tumble weed blowing her way  through the desert of life.


I think that the current economic compression has laid bare many emotional problems that people used to paper over with money and now I fear that my sister will eventually be turned out by her own children and be penniless as she approaches sixty. My husband has already broached the subject asking me if I would take her in if she appeared on our doorstep. I must admit that I am conflicted as my adherence to Christianity says yes and my recovery says no!


Here in El Paso I chaired a CODA meeting for two years but my husband said words to the effect of: “Hey give someone else a chance”

 I asked the group for someone willing to make a service commitment for one year but no one responded.


 The next week I once again invited anyone to accept the chair for six months and then three months but again no one offered to lead the group and then the next week Irma a relapsed CODA member arrived and called for a group conscience with the stipulation that upon my departure from chairing the group no one need to step forth because that’s the way they do things in El Paso and whoever shows up can chair.


I responded that that might be fine elsewhere but I personally requested the meeting room from our Pastor and since I was the only parishioner in attendance he might ask for the key to be returned.


The vote was taken and when the results weren’t to the liking of Irma a mild female version of Larry our former neighbor; she bullied the group into accepting her enunciation that a leaderless group was the best solution.


When I arrived home stunned at what happened my husband responded: that it was Almighty G-d working in our lives through her anger and that I should accept the outcome and that if not one person was willing to take the next step to effectuate their personal growth in recovery through a service commitment for two hours a week, for a year, one day at a time, and though they may need recovery they don’t want it and eventually they will lose this meeting too which is precisely what happened.


We now host one CODA and an additional ACA dinner meeting a month from the coziness of our apartment and are considering adding or incorporating a bereavement group meeting too! After we bid the last of our guest’s farewell each month with a gift of a single long stem rose and load the dishwasher, pull the tablecloths, vacuum the carpet and move all the furniture back to its original place we sit on the couch with a cup of coffee the room lit by a single fragrant candle and we listen out the den window for the eerie whistle of a late night train moving freight from El Paso to Tucson and beyond as if alerting all souls to awaken from their slumber and embrace the Lord while there is still time.


 We are constantly renewed in strength and spirit by those who enter our doorway to break bread and share in fellowship. 


When we responded in quiet resolution and evacuated one state for another after the prolonged attacks by our next door neighbor which was really an invitation to draw closer to G-d, Our lives were blessed through greater self sufficiency and a deeply satisfying happiness of [2] of mind, body and most of all spirit.


My Name is Tammy C.

I am a grateful member of CODA


In Memoriam

February 27, 2014

Dear Family and Friends;

This morning I received a call from the Hospice nurse in Carson City who discovered Bob dead in his bed. Bob raised me, my sister along with his son and our brother with love and compassion often showering us with gifts and providing us a stable home life that we had not previously known as kids. He was great in our family owned business until his addictions came calling and then after he was unceremoniously dumped from the company he departed with nothing. He moved to Carson City where he made friends all over town. Although we only communicated sporadically over the years he seemed happy and content with his daily routine. The attached photo is from a trip to Carson City in 2006 by my husband Charlie who after testifying before the Nevada Senate presented Bob with an Easter Basket that I made for him the previous night. Bob was full of life and a gentle kind soul. I will miss him greatly and have offered a series of Masses for the repose of his soul.

May the Lord have Mercy on Robert my step father and the souls of all the faithful departed. 




Chicago-Chicago’s Greatest Hits 2005.10


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