I haven’t been writing on here very often. I find myself so busy and some days I sit down to write and my mind goes blank. I know that I said last month that I am going to take more time to write on my blog, and I find myself almost 4 weeks later without having written a thing. I have the usual excuses that include: I’m so busy, I’m working, I’m tired, I don’t have time for myself, blah blah blah. Its all true stuff, its just not very important.
I have been looking back on my almost 6 months (holy crap) of sobriety, and what a journey it has been. Its unbelievable to think what my life was like that day that I finally put down the bottle. I don’t even know if I recognize that person. But it has been so much longer than a 6 month journey. It has been more like 5 years. My husband likes to say that I was problem drinking that long ago, and as much as it pains me, he is right. I have been drinking alcoholically for over 5 years. but I really have been trying to find sobriety for 2 years.
I meet people in AA and in life that like to remind me that I am lucky to have figured this all out while I am young and that I won’t waste decades like they have. I say, it sucks, no matter what age you stop drinking. Its hard work, probably the hardest thing I will ever have to do (God willing). Its true, I might not waste decades of my life drinking. But I certainly messed up this past decade, big time. I have spent time in places that I hate to remember – mainly jail and detox. I also went to rehab but that doesn’t bring up bad memories. Oh, I also wish I could forget time spent in courtrooms and lawyers offices. And how could I forget the numerous (too many to count) trips to the liquor store in search of my liquid poison. Its been 5 years of many things that I would like to forget. But, I also firmly believe that everything that has happened in the last 5 years, needed to happen to get me to this point.
To this point of unbelievable joy. To complete gratitude. To a sober life. I simply can’t believe that I am here.
I am still facing things that are challenging. I am trying to clean up my legal issues and move ahead with my life. I’m starting to go to an aftercare group at a treatment facility that I once attended (as required by the courts). I should have started going about 10 months ago when I go into trouble with the law. But, back then I wasn’t ready to face things. I wasn’t “really” ready to stop drinking. So I put it off and now that I am sober and I want to continue to be sober, I’m starting the group.
I met with the counselor yesterday (its a woman I worked with 2 years ago). She did my intake and had to decide which program I was going to go into. The DA and the courts wanted me to go to outpatient but it was up to the professional in chemical dependency. We talked for 15 minutes and she sat back in her chair and looked at me very intensely. My mind started to wonder….”oh shit, what is she going to make me do?” I was thinking worse case scenario. Probably 4 months of outpatient treatment, 3 times a week for 3 hours a night. I realized this was a possibility and it was one I was willing to accept. Then she said something that shocked the hell out of me.
“Well, holy crap, you are whole again – not just a shell of a person!” I must have looked a little shocked and confused at this comment so she said “I’ve been waiting for this person to emerge. I knew she was in there 2 years ago when you tried to get sober, but you didn’t know that”
Validation. Someone who knew me before and saw me for 15 minutes and could tell there was a difference. Someone trained in chemical dependency and who deals with people trying to bullshit them on a daily basis. She believed I was different. Not that it really matters. Because I know I am different. But its nice that someone else can see it to.
I’ll leave you with this. If you are reading this blog and wondering if you can stop drinking – you can. Now, I am not trying to be all cheerleader-ish and Suzie Sunshine. I’m trying to be real. It was 6 months (well actually almost 8 months) that I started reading sober blogs. I WANTED to stop. I wanted my life to be different. But I had lost hope. I didn’t think it was possible. I found a few amazing people who gave me a sliver of hope. That little sliver was just enough to get me started. Started on an amazing journey that is not over yet.
There is hope…it is possible. You don’t have to believe that its true. Just listen to others who tell you that it is.