Journey's blog

A Spiritual Renewal Excerpt

 

And then it came into view.....Medjugorje. The chartered bus with thirty-five enthusiast pilgrims moved slowly down the narrow dirt road.  Multiple private stone homes bordered one another on the side streets. Contrary to what I expected, the village was silent and peaceful.  I thought the area would be noisy with crowds of pilgrims. 

From the right side of the bus, Cross Mountain, often called Krizevac, (which means Mount of the Cross) faced me. This wasn't any ordinary mountain.  The huge, sixteen ton concrete cross on its ridge was the famous landmark where so many miracles were said to have happened.

Cross Mountain tower is 520 meter-high above Medjugorje.  On March 15, 1934 local parishioners constructed the cross 8.56m (nearly 30 feet) high.  On the cross is written: To Jesus Christ, Redeemer of the Human Race, as a sign of their faith, love and hope, in remembrance of the 1900 years since the death of Jesus.

The location was supposed to be the highlight of my pilgrimage, along with a clim to the top before my trips was over. The peak seemed so far off, yet, the plateau stood out so magnificently.

It was May 1998, and I tried to grasp the reality of being here. Months ago, I never would have imagined that my own miracles at home would bring me to this tiny, remoter village in Bosnia.  I didn't suspect that my life would be changed forever after my own experience witnessing the visionaries having apparitions with Our Blessed Mother, Mary, Queen of Peace.

The book A Spiritual Renewal; A Journey to Medjugorje can be purchased at  http://www.amazon.com/author/albertasequeira  I love reviews.  They are such wonderful gifts. 

Alberta Sequeira
Email: [email protected]

Where are we heading?

 

DSC01505
 
Where have people hidden their faith—or do they have any left? Do youremember who God is or Our Lady? It seems as if no one wants to even talk about Heaven, God, miracles, faith or belief. Our Churches are becoming empty with no children attending. 

It takes a tragedy or a life hanging on the line for some to look up to Heaven and pray to God. We want what we want NOW and in our time and way. When we don’t get our prays answered right away or our way, we think that there can’t be a God. He’s the one who answers in His time and way, not ours.

Yes, I was one of them, way back in 1998 taking my trip to Medjugorje in Bosnia with a stranger. I had walked away from the Church, when I had a small breakdown at a Mass. I went down the aisle for Communion and felt all sweaty, had weak and shaky knees, my hands shook, and my heart raced in my chest. I didn’t think I’d make it up to the priest to receive, but I did. After taking the Host, I ran back to my seat, got my two young daughters, and ran out of church. I didn’t go back until fifteen years late.

I blamed God for my breakdown that left me frightened to death to go into a closed area again after the episode. It took years to realize that I had pushed my mind and body beyond what it could take with trying to keep my marriage together and our family, putting up with an alcoholic husband’s behavior.

My enabling brought him deeper into his addiction going into blackouts. We lost Richard, and twenty years later, I watched one of my daughters die from the same disease of cirrhosis of the liver from drinking. They were buried together.

It wasn’t until my trip to Medjugorje in Bosnia, watching four out of six visionaries having apparitions with the Blessed Mother, and miracles she showed me with this pilgrimage, that I realized that it’s us that move away from God. He stays at our door waiting for us to unlock it, and allow him into our hearts. It’s God who waits for us to realize that He is all loving and merciful. He made each and everyone of us because He wanted to share His love with us. 

Why we lose loved ones, make the wrong mistakes, choose the wrong person, go with the wrong crowd, we will never know. Maybe when God calls us home, we will understand His actions. 

I wrote about my pain losing my father, Brigadier General, Albert L. Gramm, Sr., from cancer at eighty years old in A Spiritual Renewal; A Journey to Medjugorje. His death brought me back to God after seeing what my father believed in while dying. His faith reached my heart, and I unlocked the door.

I talk about the miracles that brought me to this holy land in my book. I call Medjugorje “A Sampler of Heaven.” God has a path for us to travel down, and if we do open our hearts, we let Him lead us there.

Our Lady says she calls each person to Medjugorje herself. She has a reason, which I didn’t come to know until years later. I became a speaker and author from my pain. That’s what Mary wanted me to do. I reach out to substance abusers, their families and the public to do God’s work to try and help the ones lost. I tell them what I had done wrong with trying to help my husband and daughter. All my actions brought them deeper into their habits. My books are more than memoirs. Their books of lessons. 

Read about our lives in all my books at www.amazon.com/author/albertasequeira. I love reviews and emails.

Alberta Sequeira
Website: http://www.albertasequeira.wordpress.com
Email: [email protected]

Where are we heading?

 

DSC01505
 
Where have people hidden their faith—or do they have any left? Do youremember who God is or Our Lady? It seems as if no one wants to even talk about Heaven, God, miracles, faith or belief. Our Churches are becoming empty with no children attending. 

It takes a tragedy or a life hanging on the line for some to look up to Heaven and pray to God. We want what we want NOW and in our time and way. When we don’t get our prays answered right away or our way, we think that there can’t be a God. He’s the one who answers in His time and way, not ours.

Yes, I was one of them, way back in 1998 taking my trip to Medjugorje in Bosnia with a stranger. I had walked away from the Church, when I had a small breakdown at a Mass. I went down the aisle for Communion and felt all sweaty, had weak and shaky knees, my hands shook, and my heart raced in my chest. I didn’t think I’d make it up to the priest to receive, but I did. After taking the Host, I ran back to my seat, got my two young daughters, and ran out of church. I didn’t go back until fifteen years late.

I blamed God for my breakdown that left me frightened to death to go into a closed area again after the episode. It took years to realize that I had pushed my mind and body beyond what it could take with trying to keep my marriage together and our family, putting up with an alcoholic husband’s behavior.

My enabling brought him deeper into his addiction going into blackouts. We lost Richard, and twenty years later, I watched one of my daughters die from the same disease of cirrhosis of the liver from drinking. They were buried together.

It wasn’t until my trip to Medjugorje in Bosnia, watching four out of six visionaries having apparitions with the Blessed Mother, and miracles she showed me with this pilgrimage, that I realized that it’s us that move away from God. He stays at our door waiting for us to unlock it, and allow him into our hearts. It’s God who waits for us to realize that He is all loving and merciful. He made each and everyone of us because He wanted to share His love with us. 

Why we lose loved ones, make the wrong mistakes, choose the wrong person, go with the wrong crowd, we will never know. Maybe when God calls us home, we will understand His actions. 

I wrote about my pain losing my father, Brigadier General, Albert L. Gramm, Sr., from cancer at eighty years old in A Spiritual Renewal; A Journey to Medjugorje. His death brought me back to God after seeing what my father believed in while dying. His faith reached my heart, and I unlocked the door.

I talk about the miracles that brought me to this holy land in my book. I call Medjugorje “A Sampler of Heaven.” God has a path for us to travel down, and if we do open our hearts, we let Him lead us there.

Our Lady says she calls each person to Medjugorje herself. She has a reason, which I didn’t come to know until years later. I became a speaker and author from my pain. That’s what Mary wanted me to do. I reach out to substance abusers, their families and the public to do God’s work to try and help the ones lost. I tell them what I had done wrong with trying to help my husband and daughter. All my actions brought them deeper into their habits. My books are more than memoirs. Their books of lessons. 

Read about our lives in all my books at www.amazon.com/author/albertasequeira. I love reviews and emails.

Alberta Sequeira
Website: http://www.albertasequeira.wordpress.com
Email: [email protected]

Where are we heading?

 

DSC01505

Where have people hidden their faith—or do they have any left? Do you remember who God is or Our Lady? It seems as if no one wants to even talk about Heaven, God, miracles, faith or belief. Our Churches are becoming empty with no children attending. 

It takes a tragedy or a life hanging on the line for some to look up to Heaven and pray to God. We want what we want NOW and in our time and way. When we don’t get our prays answered right away or our way, we think that there can’t be a God. He’s the one who answers in His time and way, not ours.

Yes, I was one of them, way back in 1998 taking my trip to Medjugorje in Bosnia with a stranger. I had walked away from the Church, when I had a small breakdown at a Mass. I went down the aisle for Communion and felt all sweaty, had weak and shaky knees, my hands shook, and my heart raced in my chest. I didn’t think I’d make it up to the priest to receive, but I did. After taking the Host, I ran back to my seat, got my two young daughters, and ran out of church. I didn’t go back until fifteen years later.

I blamed God for my breakdown that left me frightened to death to go into a closed area again after the episode. It took years to realize that I had pushed my mind and body beyond what it could take with trying to keep my marriage together and our family, putting up with an alcoholic husband’s behavior. 

My enabling brought him deeper into his addiction going into blackouts. We lost Richard, and twenty years later, I watched one of my daughters die from the same disease of cirrhosis of the liver from drinking. They were buried together. 

It wasn’t until my trip to Medjugorje in Bosnia, watching four out of six visionaries having apparitions with the Blessed Mother, and miracles she showed me with this pilgrimage, that I realized that it’s us that move away from God. He stays at our door waiting for us to unlock it, and allow him into our hearts. It’s God who waits for us to realize that He is all loving and merciful. He made each and everyone of us because He wanted to share His love with us. 

Why we lose loved ones, make the wrong mistakes, choose the wrong person, go with the wrong crowd, we will never know. Maybe when God calls us home, we will understand His actions. 

I wrote about my pain losing my father, Brigadier General, Albert L. Gramm, Sr., from cancer at eighty years old in A Spiritual Renewal; A Journey to Medjugorje. His death brought me back to God after seeing what my father believed in while dying. His faith reached my heart, and I unlocked the door. 

I talk about the miracles that brought me to this holy land in my book. I call Medjugorje “A Sampler of Heaven.” God has a path for us to travel down, and if we do open our hearts, we let Him lead us there. 

Our Lady says she calls each person to Medjugorje herself. She has a reason, which I didn’t come to know until years later. I became a speaker and author from my pain. That’s what Mary wanted me to do. I reach out to substance abusers, their families and the public to do God’s work to try and help the ones lost. I tell them what I had done wrong with trying to help my husband and daughter. All my actions brought them deeper into their habits. My books are more than memoirs. Their books of lessons. 

Read about our lives in all my books at www.amazon.com/author/albertasequeira. I love reviews and emails.

Alberta Sequeira
Website: http://www.albertasequeira.wordpress.com
Email: [email protected]

Where are we heading?

 

DSC01505

Where have people hidden their faith—or do they have any left? Do you remember who God is or Our Lady? It seems as if no one wants to even talk about Heaven, God, miracles, faith or belief. Our Churches are becoming empty with no children attending. 

It takes a tragedy or a life hanging on the line for some to look up to Heaven and pray to God. We want what we want NOW and in our time and way. When we don’t get our prays answered right away or our way, we think that there can’t be a God. He’s the one who answers in His time and way, not ours.

Yes, I was one of them, way back in 1998 taking my trip to Medjugorje in Bosnia with a stranger. I had walked away from the Church, when I had a small breakdown at a Mass. I went down the aisle for Communion and felt all sweaty, had weak and shaky knees, my hands shook, and my heart raced in my chest. I didn’t think I’d make it up to the priest to receive, but I did. After taking the Host, I ran back to my seat, got my two young daughters, and ran out of church. I didn’t go back until fifteen years later.

I blamed God for my breakdown that left me frightened to death to go into a closed area again after the episode. It took years to realize that I had pushed my mind and body beyond what it could take with trying to keep my marriage together and our family, putting up with an alcoholic husband’s behavior. 

My enabling brought him deeper into his addiction going into blackouts. We lost Richard, and twenty years later, I watched one of my daughters die from the same disease of cirrhosis of the liver from drinking. They were buried together. 

It wasn’t until my trip to Medjugorje in Bosnia, watching four out of six visionaries having apparitions with the Blessed Mother, and miracles she showed me with this pilgrimage, that I realized that it’s us that move away from God. He stays at our door waiting for us to unlock it, and allow him into our hearts. It’s God who waits for us to realize that He is all loving and merciful. He made each and everyone of us because He wanted to share His love with us. 

Why we lose loved ones, make the wrong mistakes, choose the wrong person, go with the wrong crowd, we will never know. Maybe when God calls us home, we will understand His actions. 

I wrote about my pain losing my father, Brigadier General, Albert L. Gramm, Sr., from cancer at eighty years old in A Spiritual Renewal; A Journey to Medjugorje. His death brought me back to God after seeing what my father believed in while dying. His faith reached my heart, and I unlocked the door. 

I talk about the miracles that brought me to this holy land in my book. I call Medjugorje “A Sampler of Heaven.” God has a path for us to travel down, and if we do open our hearts, we let Him lead us there. 

Our Lady says she calls each person to Medjugorje herself. She has a reason, which I didn’t come to know until years later. I became a speaker and author from my pain. That’s what Mary wanted me to do. I reach out to substance abusers, their families and the public to do God’s work to try and help the ones lost. I tell them what I had done wrong with trying to help my husband and daughter. All my actions brought them deeper into their habits. My books are more than memoirs. Their books of lessons. 

Read about our lives in all my books at www.amazon.com/author/albertasequeira. I love reviews and emails.

Alberta Sequeira
Website: http://www.albertasequeira.wordpress.com
Email: [email protected]

Where are we heading?

 

DSC01505

Where have people hidden their faith—or do they have any left? Do you remember who God is or Our Lady? It seems as if no one wants to even talk about Heaven, God, miracles, faith or belief. Our Churches are becoming empty with no children attending. 

It takes a tragedy or a life hanging on the line for some to look up to Heaven and pray to God. We want what we want NOW and in our time and way. When we don’t get our prays answered right away or our way, we think that there can’t be a God. He’s the one who answers in His time and way, not ours.

Yes, I was one of them, way back in 1998 taking my trip to Medjugorje in Bosnia with a stranger. I had walked away from the Church, when I had a small breakdown at a Mass. I went down the aisle for Communion and felt all sweaty, had weak and shaky knees, my hands shook, and my heart raced in my chest. I didn’t think I’d make it up to the priest to receive, but I did. After taking the Host, I ran back to my seat, got my two young daughters, and ran out of church. I didn’t go back until fifteen years later.

I blamed God for my breakdown that left me frightened to death to go into a closed area again after the episode. It took years to realize that I had pushed my mind and body beyond what it could take with trying to keep my marriage together and our family, putting up with an alcoholic husband’s behavior. 

My enabling brought him deeper into his addiction going into blackouts. We lost Richard, and twenty years later, I watched one of my daughters die from the same disease of cirrhosis of the liver from drinking. They were buried together. 

It wasn’t until my trip to Medjugorje in Bosnia, watching four out of six visionaries having apparitions with the Blessed Mother, and miracles she showed me with this pilgrimage, that I realized that it’s us that move away from God. He stays at our door waiting for us to unlock it, and allow him into our hearts. It’s God who waits for us to realize that He is all loving and merciful. He made each and everyone of us because He wanted to share His love with us. 

Why we lose loved ones, make the wrong mistakes, choose the wrong person, go with the wrong crowd, we will never know. Maybe when God calls us home, we will understand His actions. 

I wrote about my pain losing my father, Brigadier General, Albert L. Gramm, Sr., from cancer at eighty years old in A Spiritual Renewal; A Journey to Medjugorje. His death brought me back to God after seeing what my father believed in while dying. His faith reached my heart, and I unlocked the door. 

I talk about the miracles that brought me to this holy land in my book. I call Medjugorje “A Sampler of Heaven.” God has a path for us to travel down, and if we do open our hearts, we let Him lead us there. 

Our Lady says she calls each person to Medjugorje herself. She has a reason, which I didn’t come to know until years later. I became a speaker and author from my pain. That’s what Mary wanted me to do. I reach out to substance abusers, their families and the public to do God’s work to try and help the ones lost. I tell them what I had done wrong with trying to help my husband and daughter. All my actions brought them deeper into their habits. My books are more than memoirs. Their books of lessons. 

Read about our lives in all my books at www.amazon.com/author/albertasequeira. I love reviews and emails.

Alberta Sequeira
Website: http://www.albertasequeira.wordpress.com
Email: [email protected]

Family of Substance Abusers

 

What really goes on behind the closed doors of a family with a substance abuser?  The facts, not made-up stories. I'm one from behind the closed doors and should have opened them and faced the reality of a loved one dying from alcohol abuse.  I can't leave out possible drugs.

My two books <em>Someone Stop This Merry-Go-Round</em> and its sequel, <em>Please, God, Not Two</em>, are true stories of a wife losing her husband and then the gut pain of watching her daughter go down the same path. 

It is played out as a play or story, because I lived through it. Who can know more about the daily enabling and other mistakes than the one who reacted to the drinking and physical abuse from a loved one.  

These are not just memoirs, but books of lessons. I think we could title them, <em>What not to do with Alcohol Abuse</em>.  All the actions that I didn't take and the wrong paths I went down trying to handle alcoholism my way and hiding our family suffering for years-went on way too long. By then the damage is done with them reaching blackouts.  

I watched my daughter, Lori, suffer in awful, physical shakes.  We took her to an alcoholic rehab three times, and the family still watched her slowly die in a hospital, as her father, from cirrhosis of the liver. This is a horrible death. 

My main goal writing the stories was not so much to say I wrote about the illness or continued habits. I didn't write them to heal as people ask me. I wanted to reach others to be aware of the danger signs and not to do the things I did. It starts at home. 

If you lose a loved one, it's not because you were a bad parent or did all the wrong things. Yes, we think it, but the alcoholic and drug addict HAS TO WANT THE HELP. Period!!! If they don't, no begging, threats or pleading will bring them to being sober.

Read the books together and see how alcohol abuse grows slowly to the point of us excepting the signs as being "normal." When a change comes within the person or a family because of their habit with drinking and drug use, it's a problem. Squash it as soon as you realize this is NOT normal drinking. 

After reading them, What is and isn't <em>Working for the Alcoholic and Drug Addict </em>is a conclusion to both written by 34 substance abusers from the USA and Canada on what they need to desire the strength to get sober. They want family to hear, what does not work. These testimonies go into the mindset of the abusers to learn how they are suffering mentally and physically and what they believer doesn't work in recovery.

Read Alberta's books at <a href="http://www.amazon.com/author/albertasequeira"

Losing Two Loved Ones from Alcohol Abuse

Loving an Alcoholic is not Enough

NB Book Festival

Look at me with all my books on alcohol addiction from living the actual life with two alcoholics and losing both. Who can give stronger advice than the one who lived through the pain? 

It’s so true with the survivors asking, “What if, I should have, I could have, why didn’t I. The list can go on, because I’ve tried to answer all of them. 

We seem to think that loving a substance abuser is enough to have a loved one stop their addiction. If only it had been that easy. 

We have to understand that the addicted has to want the habit to stop more than life. How? Who really knows. Maybe a family member can pull them through the darkness, a professional, another addict, a stranger. 

I’ve tried the most important one to me, which was turning to God with prayer. Yes, I lost both after years of rosaries, novenas and just opening up my heart to Him. God, for His own reason, wanted them. He gives us a loved one and takes them back. Hopefully, we will come to learn why when we meet again. 

For now, I try my best with book signings at festivals, talks in private to the addicts or in public to reach the hearts of another addict or a family member suffering along watching their loved one slowly killing themselves. 

I think support is needed for both the substance abuse and the family member. My husband, Richie, tried for two months alone with a counselor and two with me in the private meetings. He walked away thinking he still had no problem, because his friends were all drinking. 

Richie died at forty-five years of age at the VA Hospital in Providence, Rhode Island. I had a small breakdown trying to keep the family together and becoming mentally exhausted trying to figure out how, I alone, could get him to stop his drinking. 

Lori refused from the age of 37 until her death at 39 at the Charlton Memorial Hospital in Fall River, Massachusetts to allow her sister and I into her meetings with a counselor to help her. A heavy load for me to carry. 

Death of a loved one is not something you tell someone to get over. The pain will always be there seeing a certain friend of theirs, a location you went to together or the raw moments with holidays looking at that empty seat. 

My peace comes from God. Why? Because He made us from love and wants us to be happy. God doesn’t hate, never wants us to suffer. He looks down at us with our hearts torn out from a loss and tries to comfort. 

This is not easy for me to say; it tears me apart to even write this statement. Richie and Lori had choices. They alone had to want to give that life up. I will die believing that all alcoholics, drug users, and prescription users, have deep rooted problems that happened to them and the incident was too painful to not only handle, but were too embarrassed to talk about the hurt with family or counselors. 

For now, I pray they are both at peace, buried together, at the St. Patrick Cemetery in Somerset, Massachusetts. There will always be that empty gap in my heart.

Alberta Sequeira

Purchase Alberta’s books at http://www.amazon.com/author/albertasequeira

The Demons

Written after losing my husband and daughter from Alcohol Abuse


THE DEMONS 
Life was full of hope as my husband and I said our marriage vows. 
We didn’t realize that our years would soon come for us to part. 
You answered our prayers, Lord, and gave us two loving daughters, 
Four years separated, but close in heart. 

Our children grew up and made us proud of your creation. 
As time passed, the demons fell upon our family formation. 
The once happy, stay at home dad lost his way 
He walked from his family and kept us at bay. 

The bottle was his friend that broke our unity, 
No love or begging brought him back to reality. 
My loving husband became a stranger, 
As I watched the terrible disease put his life in danger. 

There were bitter years when he walked out of our lives 
And he struggled to survive but lost his fight. 
The demons had reached for this loving man 
And they made him blind to the telltale signs. 

I gave him back to you God with tears and heartbreak, 
Knowing that I had lost him from the very start 
I struggled through the years with a painful, empty heart 
And I kept my daughters close so that we’d never part. 

Life is unfair for the demons returned. 
They were not happy with just my man. 
They grabbed my daughter and tore her in two 
Separation from her children and family was something new. 
She thought the bottle became her friend, 
The same thinking her father had way back then. 

Family and friends pleaded with prayer 
For her to see that the demons were there. 
She entered three rehabs with hope and belief, 
Thinking with each visit she’d be back on her feet. 

The demons weakened her confidence and made her think 
That there was no real harm in just another drink. 
The years of counseling were pushed aside, 
And her dreams were washed away like a receding tide. 

There were too many shared moments with friends to drink 
And her traveling had her back on the road only to sink. 
I gave her back to you God with tears and heartbreak, 
Knowing I had lost her from the very start. 

I pray Lord that she is at peace with her dad 
And I can go on sleeping and stop being so sad. 

Crush these demons and put them in hell, 
So the alcoholics are released, free to get well. 
Open their eyes to God’s presence and Our Lady’s 
So they won’t feel alone when their strength is fading. 

This is a story of Lori's struggle after three alcoholic rehabs to give her alcohol addiction up.  Please, God, Not Two is the sequel to Someone Stop This Merry-Go-Round: An Alcoholic Family in Crisis.

Purchase at www.amazon.com/author/albetasequeira

 

 

 

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