October 5, 2018: Our property search is currently undergoing maintenance. We’ll be finished soon.

Cigerettes and Leather and a whole lot of Recovery…

Beachy Beach August Love Note

(Originally published August 18, 2018)

Dear Precious Ones!!!

This will be the toughest love note I ever write but possibly the most freeing. I have always loved the smell of leather. I am not too fond of cigarette smell, but when I picked up Hugh’s original Leather bound Big Book complete with signatures and writings from his first and only rehab, the combination of smoke and leather hit me and it HIT me!!!! The why of Hugh’s life brings great peace to me.

Someone asked me if I was resentful that Hugh did not quit smoking knowing that he was putting his life in danger and possibly cutting it short. I have to honestly say I have made total peace with that and part of that is because of the combination of that smell of cigarettes and leather. Let me explain if I can, but first let me share a portion that Hugh had underlined and is at the core of the program for alcoholics but quite possibly for all of us.

“And acceptance is the answer to all my problems today. When I am disturbed it is because I find some person, place, thing, or situation- some fact of my life -unacceptable to me, and I can find no serenity until I accept that person place or thing, or situation being exactly the way it is supposed to be at this moment. Nothing, absolutely nothing happens in God’s world by mistake. Until I could accept my alcoholism, I could not stay sober: unless I accept life completely on life’s terms I can not be happy. I need to concentrate not so much on what needs to be changed in the world as in what needs to be changed in me and in my attitudes.”

I believe that the many hours spent on what I call the recovery porch, filled ashtray and all was part of Hugh’s life. When I say hours I mean hours of study, prayer, reflection and gratitude with other amazing men seeking God and peace. Hugh NEVER pointed out any of my foibles or shortcomings and in turn I did not reprimand him for his smoking or anything else that was a part of him. We accepted the other one and in so doing there was great peace in our home and love was constant. He did enjoy however making fun of my scatterbrain crazy self and I in turn enjoyed teasing about his slow, slow, very slow turtle pace.

I have come to believe that all of it and I mean all of it is God’s plan. I am not wild about having to lose Hugh early but I believe he did what God put him here to do. I believe there are many men and women who are seeking God and an honest life. I believe there are men who know that the key to having a loving relationship is to point out all that their wives do right and ACCEPT them as they are and where they are and let God do the rest.

Tonight I found a sticky note that I put on one of the pages of his book and it read, “You are such a vessel of love and blessings for God, Love me” Seeing that pink post it made me smile and perhaps that is why PINK is now my new color.

So when I reach over and hug that big book and smell its cover, I think of all the love on that porch and in that sweet man. I can not complain, nor can I wish for more because I know that the passage is correct and Hugh told me so many many times….

Nothing, absolutely nothing in God’s world happens by mistake. And so it is.
Thanks for allowing me to share my whole heart and my whole soul with all of you. No holds barred, no holding back. All of me for all of you.

It is with great love and peace and hope!!!
Karen key Smith


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