Walk in the Orchard: The Awakening

My Usual

Having abused alcohol for several years, I tried several times to sober up in the last decade. I was depressed, a hot mess and quickly losing everything. Working in a high stress career did not help matters. I replaced medication and spirituality literally with alcoholic spirits! Work is where Mr. Vodka and I met. We quickly became great friends. Problem was, he was a toxic friend. As well as all his cousins. I did not know moderation. Diagnosed with PTSD, depression, anxiety and a few other disorders, I washed my meds down with alcohol. It was to help numb everything. I thought the City of Numb was a great place when I was there. When I wasn’t there, I was ready to go back. Very soon. Quick. I was an alcoholic.

The Upbringing

Being raised atheist most of my life, I became agnostic later in life. Most would say they are one in the same. It’s a good argument, even though there is a difference. My immediate family didn’t really push God much on me or the other kids. I attended a few churches over the years with friends and some family. Churches made me feel uncomfortable. It was just not my thing. I asked my father if God was real. Him being a firm atheist had enough love in him to sit me down and tell me, “Everyone has God in them. You either choose to do the right thing and honor that, or just be a POS!”. That was my early education of our heavenly Father. Fantastic!

Let's Just Move!

Let’s skip back to the future. Almost two years ago, I had relocated my entire family miles away from our hometown by some wild hair. Leaving positions at companies in my career was common. I had no tolerance for arrogance, egos and tyrants. Just never confessed the reason my intolerance was due to me being guilty of it myself. Always moving on to the next position as I was consistently recruited for my performance. Never going too far from home, I now took a huge leap and relocated across the state. Something just felt right about this. Couldn’t understand what was guiding me.

Took a position in a company I felt a little uneasy about but did it anyways. This new area called my name. Family fell in love with the area and the great schools. Everything seemed so easy with the move and all. Got the house sold back in the hometown and settled in a house close to work. Speaking of work. It was different than what I was accustomed to, the structure of things and all. I made it work, I had no other choice. I had no clue where I was and why I moved to the other side of the world I knew. Being close to a liquor store was fantastic. No longer living in bars and clubs anymore after the move, I was turning over a new leaf! I was going to be a drunk at home!

The Reoccurring Dream...

Sometime went by and I kept having weird dreams. Between the vodka and the prescription meds, I was pretty sure my brain was manifesting the voice I heard. After those lucid dreams and the talks with the “voice”, I drank harder. It eventually got to the point I had to leave work early due to me getting the shakes. I tried several times to ween off alcohol, but it ended in failure and binge drinking. It came to the point I had alcohol coursing through my blood all the time. I was afraid of this voice, the dreams and ultimately myself.

The night I had “the dream of all dreams”, I most likely had my fifth of vodka and passed smooth out in bed. It was like most of the other dreams I had in previous weeks. I was in an orchard full of dead trees and could hear the voice talking. This time, the voice was accompanied by a being. I really didn’t pay much attention at first  to the appearance for some reason. He pointed out small young tree saplings in rows around the orchard. I was instructed to start helping dig up the big old rotted trees and replacing them with the new young trees. With nothing but a shovel, I dug. I burnt off the old trees and used the ashes to help fertilize the new trees. He would only walk over and rub his hands amongst the ashes and then walk back to the boulder. This work went on for eternity it seemed.

Realizing I was the only one doing any real work this whole time, all the while my acquaintance sat on a large boulder and spoke. We carried on conversations the whole time. I felt some muscle pain in removing the old dead trees, and it seemed to take forever. I commented on this lack of help and He said, “These old dead trees took a long time to grow. They are dead because of you. You should take happiness in planting the new trees and using the old to nourish them. You need to understand that sometimes something gone bad can help lead to new things and make them stronger. These old trees have stories, but that is the past. These new trees are new beginnings and will write their own stories.”

At this point, being very calm, I knew who I was speaking with. It was so comfortable. He knew everything about me. Which was a huge hint. He made light hearted jokes and sat there speaking on several things. I remember it all. I just listened and worked. I swore the smallish boulder He sat atop of moved as I made my way through the orchard. When I was done, we walked through the new area for hours. He commented on how beautiful it was and pointed to trees that were very old and mature, but not gone yet. Making it a point to tell me, “Don’t let those die. The ones you removed today, some needed to go, and some died due to neglect. Either way, you watch these and make sure they stay healthy. Trees can live for hundreds of years.” I received the longest dialogue about trees and their wonders and what they represent.

At this point, right before I awoke, he had one hand holding my hand and other on my shoulder. He looked at me with the warmest smile and said, “Never stop planting trees. There can never be too many.” His touch felt amazing to what soreness I felt in the dream. I awoke as if a huge rock was lifted off my chest. I got up and walked to the bathroom and noticed a slight red hand shaped print on my shoulder and my hand was slightly red. My fingernails had dirt underneath them. Let’s just say, I was a bit shaken.

Listen and He Will Help!

A few evenings later, I came home. I had taken off work early due to me having serious withdrawal symptoms from alcohol. Not having totally quit, I was just drinking a drink a night for a few nights. I got in the door, made it to the sink and threw up. I grabbed my vodka bottle and started drinking large chugs. I was in a cold sweat. My panic turned to tears as I looked up at my wife from the kitchen sink sobbing. “I need help. It’s time.” I am now sober.

Help Me on My Mission...

My mission is to plant trees metaphorically speaking. Some with just seeds. Others I just tend to and make sure they are thriving.

Help me on my mission by sharing this and keep coming back to read more as I post. If you feel out of kindness to financially back my mission with donations,  please donate by clicking the donate button. This will be a huge task, but we can all lend help in spreading the love of Him to others.




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