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Meet Alberta Sequeira in Person

December 21, 2015

The NEW BEDFORD BOOK FESTIVAL in Massachusetts, takes place on Saturday, March 5 and Sunday, March 6 at Groundwork!, 1213 Purchase Street, New Bedford from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. each day. Over 40 local authors, publishers and book sellers will be reading, selling or discussing their books with you at this free, public event.

Alberta at Tony's.jpg

Alberta H. Sequeira was born in Pocasset, Massachusetts. Her father, Albert L. Gramm, had been a Brigadier General in the Army and one of the commanding officers of the 26th Yankee Division during WWII. She spent her childhood in various towns across the different states traveling. She lives in Rochester, Massachusetts with her husband, Al, and downsizing in February to North Dartmouth.

Ms. Sequeira is a four-time award winning author, a Motivational Speaker, and an Awareness Coach on Alcohol and Drug Abuse for private and public events after the loss of her husband and daughter from North Dighton, Massachusetts . She is the producer, director and co-host to the NBTV-95 Cable TV Station out of New Bedford, Massachusetts. Ms. Sequeira is a weekly writer for the Cape Cod Today blog at (http://www.capecodtoday.com/blogs/Journey)

Her first memoir A Spiritual Renewal:A Journey to Medjugorje is about her relationship with her father and learning too late about his remarkable military life fighting throughout Europe during WWII in the battles of Lorraine, Metz and The Battle of the Bulge. After her father’s death, a spiritual change takes her to Medjugorje in Bosnia. A ten day pilgrimage to this tiny, remote village allowed her to witness four out of six visionaries having apparitions daily with The Blessed Mother. Their first vision was in 1981 and still continuing today.

Her second memoir, Someone Stop This Merry-Go-Round; An Alcoholic Family in Crisis, is about her young life married to her alcoholic husband, Richard Lopes of North Dighton, Massachusetts and their two daughters who lived behind closed doors in silence with confusion and fear. It’s a roller coaster with Richie’s struggle trying to combat his addiction. Join her on a merry-go-round of her own enabling to only bring him deeper into his addiction. In 1985, Richie died at the VA Hospital in Providence, Rhode Island at 45 years old from cirrhosis of the liver.

The sequel Please, God, Not Two; This Killer Called Alcoholism is the continuation of their lives after Richie’s death, and the story follows her daughter, Lori Cahill, going down the same path as her father. On November 22, 2006, after three rehabilitation stays, Lori died at 39 years old at the Charlton Memorial Hospital in Fall River from the same horrible, worldwide disease. This book contains some of the author’s speaking engagements to alcoholic abusers at halfway homes and substance abuse rehabilitation centers.

What is and isn’t Working for the Alcoholics and Addicts; In Their Own Words is a Narrative Non-Fiction book of testimonies from thirty-four recovering alcoholics and drug addicts from all walks of life from the United States and Canada telling what they believe does and does not work in their recovery programs. Hopefully, these honest testimonies will help others fighting the same battle and heading down this same destructive path and for family members to learn from them how they are suffering physically and mentally from their substance abuse. They want to reach doctors, counselors, family members and society on what they believe is needed for support for them to desire professional help.

Her first fictional is due next year: The Rusty Years. Alberta wants readers to know there is a lighter side to her.

In 2013, Alberta and Al, met with Stephen Meunier, who at the time had been the Policy Advisor to Senator John Kerry, in his office located in Boston, Massachusetts. They presented ways to try to modify the Patient Privacy Act to help alcoholics, drug addicts, the mental ill and their families.

Reader Views of Austin, Texas had awarded A Spiritual Renewal; A Journey to Medjugorje the Reviewers Choice Award 2008 Semi-Finalist. Allbooks Review of Canada had nominated her memoirs Someone Stop This Merry-Go-Round with the “Editor’s Choice Award” and was nominated for the “Dan Poynter’s Global eBook Award 2011.” The sequel, Please, God, Not Two was also nominated for the “Editor’s Choice Award 2010” and appeared in the December 20, 2010 issue of Publishers Weekly.

She is a Continuing Education instructor for two three- hour writer’s workshops titled “Bring Your Manuscript to Publication” and “How to Self-Publish Your Own Book with Create Space. Both are published as handbooks with Amazon in paperback and Kindle.

Alberta is a co-founder to Authors Without Borders,” (www.awb6.com) with three other authors who offer their services with speaking engagements, readings, panel discussions, book signing, poetry slams and workshops at schools, bookstores, businesses, and libraries.

Email: alberta.sequeira@gmail.com
Website for writers: www.albertasequeira.org
Blog “Journey Through Alcohol Abuse”: www.albertasequeira.wordpress.com

Who is Alberta Sequeira

December 14, 2015

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Personal

I grew up with three brothers, Bill, Joe, and my twin brother, Albert, along with a sister, Leona, who is the oldest and five years older than me. We had a brother, Walter, who we called Butch, but he died of polio at seven years old, and at the time, I was only two so I didn’t have the blessing of knowing him, only through pictures. My parents took his death hard.

My childhood is full of good memories. Having a twin brother, his buddies and my girlfriends would always group together to have fun: baseball, sledding, skating, rode bikes, and walked to the ice-cream store. As teenagers with a car license, we rode to the city, where owners parked their cars along the streets for show, and had them shinning brighter than the sun. Guys carried their cigarettes rolled-up in their tee-shirt sleeves, wore loafers, and we played the great sixties music until they wore out. I was disappointed when Elvis got married breaking my heart!

I loved school for the social time looking for fun and making the kids laugh during study periods. As for the classes, I went because it was something we had to do and graduate. I look back now and realize how important and special those days were to all of us.

Our father, Albert L. Gramm, had been a retired Brigadier General in the Army. He fought in WWII as one of the commanding officers of the 26th Yankee Division and fought in some famous battles like Metz, Lorraine and The Battle of the Bulge. He died in 1990 at eighty years old in South Dennis, down Cape Cod from cancer, and I let the wonderful military history of this great man, pass with him.

Our mom, Sophie Gramm, had been a stay-at-home mom and greeted us each and every day coming home from school. Suppertime was “Family Time”, not as it is today. We laughed, talked about our school classes and friends and got to know each other. My mother died in 2007 at ninety-two years of age from a stroke, two months after my daughter, Lori’s, death.

I met my first husband, Richard Lopes from North Dighton, MA, and we had two beautiful daughters, Debbie and Lori, four years apart. My dreams of a happy marriage ended after fourteen years of being an enabler…way too long..to Richie with his drinking. We divorced and he died in 1985 at forty-five years old from alcoholism.

After my divorce, I met and married, Al Sequeira, from Rochester, MA. I sold my home and moved with him. He had four grown children and we became very close as a family and we do not call our kids- stepchildren. They are all our sons and daughters.

I had stayed too long with Richie during our marriage and Debbie and Lori had kept their pain inside and we lived in fear, confusion and they heard and witnessed too many moments with my abuse behind closed doors. Something children should not live in with life. They missed having a happy, secure life. Instead, Lori secretly lived a life of alcohol abuse and fought bulimia. She hid it well until she was thirty-seven and died in 2006 at thirty-nine from the same thing her father died from …alcoholism.

Debbie took Lori’s two children in at fifteen and sixteen years old to live with their two children, Michael and Kerri, and we watched Lori take her last breath at the Charlton Memorial Hospital in Fall River, MA after taking her off life-support. She had been admitted three times for substance abuse at rehabilitation centers and could not find the strength to hold on to the professional help.

Professional

Al has supported my writing after I decided write my first memoir about my father and my life with him in A Spiritual Renewal; A Journey to Medjugorje. I then opened-up about the realism of alcohol abuse in the family and writing about Richie in Someone Stop This Merry-Go-Round; An Alcoholic Family in Crisis and its sequel with Lori, Please, God, Not Two; This Killer Called Alcoholism. After losing two loved ones from alcohol abuse, I wanted to know how others fight this disease and come out winning. I wrote my first Narrative Non-Fictional What is and isn’t Working for the Alcoholic and Addict: In Their Own Words. Thirty-four addicts told their stories on what they believe does and doesn’t work in recovery and what they need from family members to desire professional help.

A year after Lori’s death, I started speaking engagements at halfway homes, rehabs and court-ordered programs about alcoholism and the effect on the whole family or on the topic of my spiritual changes in my life from my pilgrimage to Medjugorje in Bosnia witnessing four out of six visionaries having apparitions with Our Lady since 1981 to this day. I wrote about it in A Spiritual Renewal. I slowly started to speak to the public and family members of substance abuse. I feared speaking in public more than anything on earth.

I teach two three-hour workshops on “Bring Your Manuscript to Publication” and “How to Self-Publish Your Own Book with Create Space.” I published them in handbooks on Amazon.

I am also a director, producer and co-host to the New Bedford 95 Cable TV station. I also became a co-founder to Authors Without Borders with three other authors (www.awb6.com).

My books are in paperback and Kindle at http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss_1?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=alberta+sequeira.

My email is alberta.sequeira@gmail.com if you want a quote for a talk.

Future

Al and I own a Time Share to make us go on vacation. We have gone to many places in the US, but our thrill was going to Italy and Portugal three years ago. It had been like going back in time with the everyday living. We met Al’s relatives for the first time in a tiny village with only 12 families. It was wonderful. Family still had goats to walk up to the mountains, took care of beehives to make the honey, sheep, fruit trees in all backyards to just pull them off and eat fresh. Vegetable, like potatoes, are all grown in the ground. I never saw a can of food anywhere. The old churches were kept and were breathtaking. Everyone looked healthy in their old years. I can’t imagine them living under stress like we do in the USA.

I went alone in 1998 to Medjugorje in Bosnia to witness apparitions with six visionaries since 1981 until this day. Our Lady is leaving them all ten secrets to be revealed to the world when they receive them. Changes, some horrible because of our sins on earth. There are only two visionaries left to get one more secret. I call this tiny, remote village “A Sampler of Heaven!” It’s the closest I’ve felt to heaven. God and Mary’s presence is felt in the deepest part of your soul. I wrote about it in A Spiritual Renewal.

My enjoyment is now spent on writing my first fictional book The Rusty Years. I want my followers to see a lighter side of me after writing about so much pain.

We are now selling our home to “downsize” and enjoy life. It’s another stage we came to with getting older. I look in the mirror and wonder what happened to that young girl who was full of life and had big dreams! God has a way of taking us in another direction. His path is to show us how to help others.

Why Can’t I Stop Drinking?

November 22, 2015

By Wendy Perkins, Liver Doctor

How is your liver reacting to your daily or binge consumption of alcohol?

We forget about the damage that alcohol does to our liver until it’s too late. I’m the last resort, so I’m told by my patients, in their quest to stop drinking. Although many have maintained short term sobriety, it’s not too long before they succumb to picking up a drink to celebrate or to numb their feelings. “Why can’t I stop drinking?” is their war cry.

What most people don’t realise is the compulsion to drink is triggered by the first drink, not the fifth or the sixth drink.

A different brain structure enables an alcoholic to manufacture a highly addictive chemical called THIQ out of alcohol in the brain. Once a sufficient concentration of THIQ is formed and attached to the neurones, alcoholics feel a compulsive and over-whelming urge to drink. Even when they see their lives disintegrating around them, they cannot stop drinking no matter how desperately they try.

Social drinkers don’t have this problem as their liver breaks the alcohol down into a very toxic substance where it is broken down again into water and carbon dioxide to be eliminated through the kidneys and the lungs.

Alcohol dependent people get a lot of alcohol in their brain tissue following bingeing or daily drinking. The majority of toxins are disposed of in the normal way, through the liver, but a small part of the toxins go to the brain, where it interacts with the Dopamine Neurotransmitter to form THIQ. Once this has attached itself to the Dopamine Neurotransmitter, it does not go away, even if the alcohol dependent person stops drinking. They have it for life!

That’s why alcohol dependent people can sometimes go on the wagon for a period of three weeks, three months or even three years but once they fall off the wagon and pick up a drink, they are back to compulsive drinking. THIQ is the chemical responsible for the physical compulsion to drink and which differentiates alcoholic drinkers from social drinkers.

If an alcoholic is lucky enough to get help to stop drinking the THIQ dies down and loses its potency within a few weeks. It does not disappear from the brain tissue but lies dormant. It will not and cannot create a physical urge to drink unless more alcohol is consumed to kick it into life again.

When alcoholics begin their drinking careers, they do not know that they are in danger of becoming alcoholics. By the time abnormal daily drinking begins, it is too late. The THIQ in the brain is formed, it is active and highly addictive and it forms the basis of physical compulsion to drink.

Alcoholics are born with a predisposition to the disease of alcoholism and alcoholism is a disease of the emotions combined with a physical allergy to alcohol. Would you keep eating strawberries if your face broke out in hives? I doubt it. But alcoholics keep ingesting a poison called alcohol even though it is eroding their liver, kidneys and brain.

The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result.

My Serenity by the Sea program is unique in counselling alcoholics. I look at the big picture:

Brain chemistry (the Dopamine Neurotransmitter);
Emotions (using Dialectical Behavioural Therapy);
Active meditation to change their perception of the real world and their self-worth;
The 12 Step Program of Co-dependency Anonymous;
Visual aids (DVDs) to help my patients understand their disease;
Nutrition and supplements like Tyrosine – to help them focus and achieve satisfaction without reaching for the bottle and Magnesium Ultra Potent – to stabilise the electrical activity of the nervous system. I also recommend Glicemic Balance to help curb sugar cravings, sometimes a legacy from long term alcohol consumption. LivaTone Plus to support phase 1 and phase 2 detoxification pathways, ensuring optimum detoxification of toxic substances. Glutamine to support efficient brain function during the counselling process. L-Glutamine is an integral part of glutathione; the body’s more potent antioxidant and detoxifier.
If you want to talk to me about your alcohol dependency, you can reach me on 61 2 4454 3556 or email counsellor@scoastnet.com.au

www.couragetochange.com.au

January 26th, telephone seminar

November 3, 2015

Cathy

I spent years struggling with how to help my child when she was stuck in the cycle of her drug use. I searched for answers and felt hopeless like so many do, until one day I was introduced to an approach that changed my life.

Now we know that just as you helped your child when they were growing up, parents can help their teen or adult child when they have drug or alcohol use issues.

Finally, there are some research-based solutions that are now available that can help motivate your child to change their lifestyle.

I’m passionate about motivating parents to learn strategies that can help their child because of what I went through and how it changed my life.

So now I’m committed to helping anxious parents feel more empowered with information, tools, and strategies so that they can encourage their child to live a healthier lifestyle.

My greatest desire is to help you navigate your way through the maze of options, so that you can find solutions in the fastest way possible using these research-based strategies that I’ve learned.

I want to share with you approaches that work!

I would like to invite you to start your new year off with hope and a plan.

Join me for a webinar on Tuesday, January 26th at 1 pm Eastern/10:00 am Pacific titled,

“3 Powerful Ways To Help Move Your Child Towards Recovery”

In the webinar you’ll discover the “three powerful ways” to help your child make 2016 a better year. These techniques will also help you feel less depressed, anxious, and frustrated.

In this information-packed session you’ll learn:

How you can talk to your child, so there is more of chance they will listen!
How to distinguish enabling from positive reinforcement, so your child (teen or young adult) will be encouraged to make better decisions and be more aware of what they are doing to improve their lives.
The hidden barrier that often holds your child back from feeling the full impact of their choices.
How changing the conversation can help your child consider more carefully what you are saying to help them make better decisions.
Plus, you’ll receive a new pdf: 11 Essential Tips That Help When You Feel Overwhelmed By Worry

If you are concerned about these issues and want to make 2016 better than before, consider joining us on January 26th!

Here are all the details:

Title: 3 Powerful Ways to Help Move Your Child Towards Recovery

Date & Time: Tuesday, January 26th at 1:00 PM Eastern

Attend by Phone:

Guest pin code: 983359#

Primary dial in number: (425) 440-5100

Secondary dial in number: (862) 236-1575

Full list of dial in Numbers:

http://InstantTeleseminar.com/Local/?eventid=79439502

Event Page:

http://iTeleseminar.com/79439502

I hope you’ll join me for this free webinar!​ I’m looking forward to spending time with you.

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ALL the best,

CATHY

925-984-1562

 

Denying Addiction

October 24, 2015

poster addiction.jpg

Book Trailers

October 22, 2015

https://www.youtube.com/embed/Xh9BA8ljL-w“>

A Spiritual Renewal is a beautiful story which follows the author’s inner thoughts and intense emotions. We sympathize as she fights the prognosis of her father’s cancer and learns too late about his remarkable life. She develops a spiritual renewal and demonstrates its powerful lessons.

https://www.youtube.com/embed/A3CUvHMecEg“>

This book contains the testimonies of individuals who were or are actively in a recovery program and wanted to share their habit and actions with their struggles trying to overcome their own addiction. These are their own stories on how their addiction led to the devastation of losing control of their life, family, friends and the death of other family members from this disease we call alcoholism. Hopefully, the heartfelt honesty from the participants will help doctors and counselors to use their stories for their own study on what may be missing in the treatment methods.

Both books can be purchased in paperback and Kindle at http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss_1?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=alberta+sequeira

Read what the reality is living in a substance abuse family. Love and devotion is transformed into insecurity, fear, struggles, abuse and silent enabling to protect the ones we love. There is sadness as to how we watch a family member or friend heading down the road of death, and our love and support can’t stop the disaster from this demon.

Losing a Child from Drinking

August 5, 2015

 

Please, God, Not Two        Lori's picture for book (2)

Sequel to Someone Stop This Merry-Go-Round

There can’t be a pain worse than losing a child. It doesn’t matter how or where. They can be an infant up to adulthood, and the pain can still hit you like nothing else. The shock of being in the category of losing a child is devastating. It always happens to others we think. There is no protective bubble around us with this kind of loss.

When we lost Lori, I felt my world end. It had been bad enough losing my husband, Richie, but not a second family member. How could I have been so blind? Easy. The addict hides their actions and habit for years before it is even known that there is a problem.

I blew off her last year in Dighton-Rehoboth High School as just following the crowd and would stop drinking once she graduated. Never related it to a family disease that was very high on her dad’s side. Foolish thinking for someone who buried a husband from alcohol abuse. Even family members go into denial like the addict or become huge enablers bringing them deeper into their addiction.

Lori got married, had two beautiful children, Meagan and Joe, and we thought she had it all. Life changes and we found out when she was 37 years old that she had an alcoholic problem. Before admitting herself into the Gosnold Rehab in E. Falmouth, MA, we never knew it.

The next two years had Lori in and out of the Gosnold twice and once in Butler Hospital in Providence, RI. Her stage of life from drinking had her lose a solid Payroll Manager position, her car had been repossessed, lost her home and her dignity. Our heart broke seeing her go from one place to another or not knowing where she was living. A woman who had it all. A woman who loved life, friends, family and her children.

Please, God, Not Two follows her life, the hardship of her family and friends who loved her, and watched her go down the wrong path with this heartless demon taking her life at 39 years old at the Charlton Memorial Hospital in Fall River, MA. The same way as her father…alcoholism. Her death opened the raw emotions that I had buried losing Richie. It’s not easy going to a gravesite and see your two loved one’s names on a tombstone…a father and daughter, gone from such a useless death.

That is what is happening in this world today with many families.  How do we stop this death rate around the world? How do we wake our children up to the facts that over-drinking, following the crowd or handling their problems with alcohol, drugs or over-dosing with prescription pills, is a deathtrap.

We need to teach children at a young age, grammar school for a start, to open up when something is bothering them to the point of burying it deep within them and handling it with substance abuse. I believe professionals need to give individual counseling and find out “WHY” they are using. We need to “listen” when our children are trying to hint to us what is going on in their lives that are pulling them into hopelessness and depression.

My memoirs are not just about what happened in our lives. Both books, including Someone Stop This Merry-Go-Round, talks about our lives behind closed doors and then follows how I should have handled an event instead of the yelling, fighting and asking them why they are using when they don’t know themselves. We don’t get a second chance to go back and fix things or bring a person back to us. We have to try to reach others who are suffering from the same. One life. Just one… would make it worth the try.

Give these books as a gift to someone, whether it be a birthday gift, someone in the hospital or rehab, or a family member. They were written to help—-not to tell a story. I want people to learn from my mistakes.

Add What is and isn’t Working for the Alcoholic and Addict: In Their Own Words written by 34 alcoholic and drug users from the USA and Canada on what they believe they need from all of us to help them. It’s a book for doctors, counselors, another addict, family and society. You will learn the deep, real pain the addict is mentally and physically suffering in silence, when they really want to reach out for help.

Purchase all books in paperback or Kindle at http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss_1?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=alberta+sequeira

 

 

 

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