It’s been so long since I have written a post…I’m not sure what to write about.
I’m 15 months sober.
Not drinking is totally normal for me now and I really feel like I am embracing long term sobriety.
But I worry whether I can live in long term sobriety without always working my recovery? I owe so much of my journey so far to the tools that I used almost daily in the first year. I emailed sober pen pals, blogged, commented, reached out to other sober bloggers. I met up with like minded people who were on the same path as I was, most of us were relatively new to sobriety. I wrapped myself in a virtual sober cloak for a year, while piece by piece I pulled my old fractured, disillusioned existence apart. I stripped myself bare of all the fronts and props that had been holding me back. It was a gradual process but a lot of the time I felt alien and raw.
With help, advice, encouragement and support, bit by bit. I built a new existence that no longer revolved around escapism and chaos.
Day by day, the cravings got easier to handle and over time I did a lot of overdue, emotional growing up.
I learned to take ownership of my feelings and responsibly for my actions.
Whilst all of this is incredibly hard to face, there’s a real learning process, a lot of pain, some anger and a whole load of tears…there is the other side of you that bounces back into life too!
There’s the happiness, the laughter, the fresh start, clear head, the joy of rediscovering the good stuff that got squished down along with the bad.
I cannot believe how high my highs are when they come. Ok, it’s not every night at 6pm but it’s real and it’s not followed by pain, guilt and remorse.
You know when you think about (or used to think about) a life without your precious tipple and you couldn’t imagine anything that could ever compensate? And when you can’t see your world with any sense of satisfaction or fulfilment without booze…When you feel sick and panicked at the very thought of it?
Well, take booze and replace it with recovery…that is the way I feel about my precious sobriety now. I couldn’t stand to have it taken away from me.
My life is worth so much more now. I value every bit of it and I can t believe I was so flippant and how I fucked around massively with my health.
I adore being sober.
I am finally content and at peace with myself. I respect me, and as a result everything around me has changed and benefited. It’s not a party all day, every day. There are still times when I want to shut out reality and have a bit of time outside my own head. But it’s no longer an option so I find other ways to temporarily switch off. I lose myself in a film, some window shopping or indulge in some treat food. All of these, like booze, are a temporary fix, but without the negative consequences.
Socially, some nights rock and other nights are pants…the only difference is that I own the morning after and the rest of the day or weekend. A shit night out ends when I decide to call it a night and not about two days later because I drank so much to pep it up and suffered a shitty hangover. I can get a two day buzz from highs of a fun night, spent in good company, laughing, chatting, eating and focusing on other elements to add the fun factor. I have stopped worrying about who/when/ how much boozing will be involved – I just don’t fret in advance anymore. I can’t tell you what a relief all of this is for me. I never pictured myself to able to exist happily without wine let alone feel so strongly that this is the best that I have ever felt in my adult life. It is and I am grateful to have found a way out of that life to this place.
Booze had stopped working for me years and years ago and yet I just couldn’t let it go. Now I have finally found something else that has made everything fall into place I am going to do everything it takes to stay here.