Friday, December 31, 2010

Top 10

Top 10 Sobriety Highlights of 2010
     (in no particular order)

*Picking up my 2 year chip on 12/16/10
*Finishing my steps
*Leading a Newcomer's Session
*Giving my testimony
*Befriending Glenda and singing and praying with her days before she died
*Struggling well with my husband as he navigates his own drinking
*Owning up to my slip with xanax last week
*Sharing my story with T and having her celebrate my successes and endure my tears
*Clear eyes and sound mind every morning, sans the morning after the 21st
*Being sober from alcohol for another 365 days

What has been one ore more of your highlights?
Happy New Year!
there IS hope~

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Off the wagon-

I woke up with a hangover this morning. The first hangover in over 2 years. My head hurt, I thought I was going to throw up, I couldn't drink my coffee.

I didn't drink alcohol last night. I did take 2 anxiety pills. And I wasn't feeling anxious. I took one before the party, in anticipation of the anxiety I was afraid I might feel. During the party I was feeling pretty good, so I went ahead and popped the second one.

Yep, sure did.

Felt loopy, like a tiny buzz.

Then felt guilty, full of remorse and regret.

I sent my sponsor a text as  I was leaving the party and she and I proceeded to have a conversation where I admitted everything. Which is actually progress, 2 years ago I would have admitted nothing. At least not at first. I knew what I was doing when I took the pill. I wanted to feel loopy. I wanted to feel some escape. I wanted to.

While I have been sober for 2 years there have been many times I have fantasized about a buzz. Spent too much mental energy imagining what it would feel like. Last night I was weak and I felt that desire again. I have tools to get my head out of those situations, I just chose not to employ them. I didn't pray or text for help or walk away and come back. I purposely put a second pill in my pocket, after taking the first.

And I regret it. Before bed I flushed the rest of the prescription down the toilet. The prescription I really didn't need to get in the first place. I have learned from this that my brain is still sick. When I get a little, I want more. I am still an alcoholic. Last night I just changed my substance. Last night was the biggest mess up of my sobriety. However, it was a huge wake up call and for that I am grateful.

Don't be so naive and self-confident. You're not exempt. You could fall flat on your face as easily as anyone else. Forget about self-confidence; it's useless. Cultivate God-confidence. 1 Corinthians 10:12
I am sorry.
I'm still believing that there IS hope~

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

more or less

Actual text I sent today:

Does anyone do it right? Does anyone have positive, healthy coping mechanisms?

I went to two stores with my 3 children this morning. My babes are 7.5, 6.5 and 3.5. They are good kids. And they are normal. They talk a lot, run off, ask ask ask for things. I was feeling a bit crazed by the end of the trip.

We finally made it home. And I rewarded myself with 2 pieces of cold pizza and some fudge. Seriously.

Good grief. Instead of feeling less stressed or less anxious or less irritated I felt more bloated and less in control.

Why is that? Why didn't I take a few minutes, walk into my bedroom, count to 10, breath deep, pray? Why did I stuff my mouth f.u.l.l.?

I guess admitting there is a problem is the first step, right?! What do you do when you feel overwhelmed? I did go for a run when my mister came home for his lunch break.

Yep, there IS hope~
Happy Tuesday!

Saturday, December 18, 2010


a (1) : refusal to admit the truth or reality (as of a statement or charge) (2) : assertion that an allegation is false b : refusal to acknowledge a person or a thing 

That about sums it up. I tried two different times to tell my parents I recently celebrated 2 years of sobriety. Both ways seemed very nonthreatening to me. Both times were met with silence. 

Nothing. Not a thing.

The entire day of my anniversary I felt celebrated. From the cake with two candles with my sponsor and another friend at 515 am to the numerous texts and phone calls, the card in the mail, the dinner my best friend took me to, the cheers and whoops when I went up to get my chip. It seems that people know this is a big deal. That it takes an incredible amount of work to make it 730 days without a drop of alcohol. 

Especially when that was your coping mechanism of choice.

I'm not getting that message from my parents. When I first started on this journey I hid it from my family. Then as time went on there would be subtle comments I'd try to make that fell fast and flat. My sponsor explained that in order for my parents to acknowledge my drinking problem they'd have to face their own.

I see. I get it.

I guess all I wanted today was an atta' girl, a pat on the back.

For them to be proud of me.

It is dangerous for me to get my worth from how others view me. From how my parents view me. I am worthy simply because God created me. I am fearfully and wonderfully made. (Psalm 139-13-15) And it doesn't matter if I get a standing ovation at my meeting. or if my parents totally ignore my remarks. God knows my heart. He knows the hard work I have put into my sobriety, the close calls, the late night texts. 

He knows I am an alcoholic and He knows I am sober. 

I'm not denying that.

There IS hope~

Thursday, December 16, 2010

2 years

730 days ago I took my last drink. Gin poured into a sobe bottle. I took the bottles into the living room, away from the lights of the kitchen and poured at least an inch worth of gin into the bottle. I don't like gin. It tastes like Christmas trees. But it was all I had and I drank it anyway.

I drank it, knowing full well it would be my last drink for awhile. Possibly forever. I drank enough that night to have a buzz, but not get drunk.

I haven't had a buzz since. I've wanted one. I have desired the escape of a few glasses of wine. The softening of my shoulders, the slowing of my breath, the fogging up of my brain. I have fantasized about it even.

But I haven't experienced it.

A few weeks ago the topic of my meeting was Relapse. I almost didn't go, flippantly thought, Oh, I'm all past that now. Wrong. As I listened to the speaker I became a little angry. I became a little wistful. I again wanted that imagined freedom of a buzz. I left my meeting and went to a friend's house. She is a new friend, we have become close this fall. But sometimes things just click and you know when folks are legit. She is that friend.

I sat on her couch and slowly my feelings came to the surface, came bubbling out. I was feeling sorry for myself. Feeling like life was unfair, that I had the 'right' to drink. Now T doesn't know my whole story, or the instances of the very worst drinking. But she knows enough to know that I go to meetings and I collect chips and I can say with certainty "I am an alcoholic."

She asked my why would I want to go back there? Why would I want to go back to the pit I had been rescued from? Why would I want to lay awake at night in a panic, wondering what I had said and to whom? Wondering if I had flirted too heavily, laughed too loud, shown too much? Trying to remember how I had gotten home, if anyone from work had seen me, or if I had kissed my kids good night.

Yeah, NO, I don't want to go back there. I do not miss those types of feelings. Of inadequacy and shame and fear and sadness. Such sadness.

So here I sit, 2 years sober. My shame is gone. My smile is genuine. As are my tears. I still struggle and I still seek out help. I'm not even going to tell you how many text messages I send and receive in a given month. I have surrounded myself with strong friends, some of whom have walked this road ahead of me, many who walk alongside of me and a few that I hope to lead into the light. Things are easier with my extended family and my friend that has been praying for ripple effects might be seeing some fruit from her labors.

I told my sponsor this morning- my recovery doesn't define me anymore. It is a part of who I am, not all that I am. There are even days I forget what I have been through.

But today is not one of those days. Today is December 16, 2010 and I have been alcohol free for 2 years. 24 months. 104 weeks. 730 days.

My friend T sent me a note of encouragement this morning. Part of it reads:
My prayer for you today is that you hold steadfast in your journey to serve God through your family, friends, work and church. I pray that you remember only enough of your PAST to keep you focused on your PRESENT ministry, knowing full well that your FUTURE is secure in the grace and love of your Lord, Jesus Christ!

Two down...a lifetime to go. Continue on, taking one step at a time, allowing Him to carry you on the days your weakness seems too great.
Here we go..................

Monday, December 13, 2010

looking back-

This past week or so I have been reflecting on the last 727 days. Much has changed. Much has been clarified. I have been re-reading journal entries from the last two years and reveling in the grace of the Father....

Here is a prayer I wrote in July of this year-

Dear Heavenly Father- I thank you for the grace you have shown me, for the love you have given me and for the safe place you have brought me. I am Your creation and I desire to live a life that is a pure reflection of your spirit. When I am wrong, please let me promptly admit it and help me to be a strength to others, a beacon to them, drawing them near to you. Thank you for the wise people you have placed in my life who love You and love me and that are able to be a guiding force in my life. Allow me to pass that on to others. Lord, please protect me from the enemy, allow me to quickly see his schemes and to cling to You and flee from him. Lord I ask you to provide an outlet for this amazing grace I have been given and that you would also protect my heart from the sin of pride. I am anxious to share all I have been given, boldly and without shame. Thank you thank you thank you for your provision and abundance. Please cover my family and keep us in your arms. In Your Most Holy and Precious name I give you all things- Amen.

2 years is a long time and it is also a blip on the radar of eternity. And for that I am grateful.

There IS hope~