Sometimes I worry that I'm repeating myself with all the writing that I do on addiction and recovery. I've been writing regularly about sobriety since the day I quit - over 7 and a half years ago! And over the years I've found myself repeating the same beliefs and lessons I've learned, using so many of the same phrases over and over.
Beliefs like this: Getting sober is hard at first. You have to learn how to deal with shit raw. But it's so worth it. If you push through the rough early stages you eventually get to a much happier and more peaceful place.
And this: Sober life isn't a bed of roses all the time, but it's overall a much calmer and more grounded way to live.
And this: It takes time to experience the uplift that sobriety brings, it happens slowly and incrementally. Sobriety isn't a constant flow of dramatic revelations and exciting breakthroughs, it's a slow unfolding. The lovely accumulation of little precious moments and subtle revelations that when they build up start forming a new authentic experience of life.
I say these things in varying ways over and over, and sometimes I worry: am I being trite? Are people sick of hearing this? Is this boring? Am I preaching to the converted? Am I full of shit?
But then I hear other people saying these exact same things for the first time in their own words and I realise, this stuff can never be old, trite, or boring. This stuff is real, it's so important and so precious and none of us can ever hear it enough.
Every time I pop into the Members Feed here and see what newly sober people are sharing - those brave individuals who are battling through the tough early days and weeks of sobriety - I'm reminded how powerful these revelations are when they first hit. Time and again I read a new member echoing what I'm always saying - but it's in their own words, related to their own experience. These things are real and they are revealed time and time again to people going through their own recovery journey.
And every time I see it, I'm reminded that anybody who is working hard to remove alcohol from their lives is a goddam brave and amazing hero.
It takes such guts to trust that good things are coming, even though it feels tough as hell right now. It takes a huge amount of bravery to persevere through the roller-coaster of early sobriety, hoping that those who have gone before are correct, and yes.. things really will get better.
Be brave. Read my words above. Listen to other long-timers in the Members Feed. Have faith. Trust. It will get easier, you will reap the benefits, it's all so worth it. Yes it's hard bloody work at first, transitioning from living boozily to living sober, and you are a hero for doing it. You are capable and you are brave. Believe it.
It's so worth the effort
Love, Mrs D xxx
A long time functioning alcoholic. I was sober for 9 months and thought “1 little glass of wine can’t hurt.” Boy was I wrong. I am still drinking, but plan to quit soon. I know there is never a right time. I’m getting my support in place if that makes sense. Will continue to read your blog.
Thanks again Mrs- D for your words that always encourage and remind me of why I’m here living without booze. It gets easier but we should never be complacent. At 849 days I still check in here to be supported in staying on this new path. What you say may sometimes be repetitive but it never goes unread and is always something that keeps me headed in the right direction. Thanks again!
I love to hear again and again about the benefits of not-drinking! I love to have my brain “washed” this way because my biggest fear is about forgetting WHY I’m doing this and WHAT I’m doing it for. So go on “preaching” Mrs D and everyone else!!! I’m not religious, but: at church the preacher doesn’t create new stories, he always uses the same old bible… the truth stays the truth!
Day 1 for me and getting close to Happy Hour… perfect timing! Thanks for the encouraging words to help me through!
I am sick and tired of the power of my addiction to confront the problems in my life with alcohol.The time and money it takes. The unhappyness it brings to my partner and shame it brings to me. I will go back to councelling. Tomorrow I will start another year in my life and am determined to make this the last not sober year
I needed to hear this today…..Had a wee bit of (good) tears streaming down my face about halfway through.
You have a way with words. This really touched me today.
Such a beautiful and power-filled post!
Thankyou Mrs. D. – you are so beautifully honest & wise. I have started my sober journey many times in the almost 4 years since I found you & Living Sober.
This time around I am seeing to a greater degree how I am building strength & self-trust by not succumbing to the numbing effects of alcohol.
First time I’ve read anything from you as I just joined.
I’m 7 days sober and looking forward to a more interesting life outside of alcohol.
I was a heavy social drinker and am getting bored with being just that..so here goes..
Looking forward to a sober life style ..
Feeling very tired though last week ..I’m sure it will lift and I’ll get my good energy back.
I really liked this blog post, Mrs. D. And to @janetv, well said.
I am 102 days sober and couldn’t be more grateful for the wisdom and support I’ve found here. Your words are not repetitive or trite – they are truthful and encouraging and enlightening. Like Janetv, I also came here every day during my first few weeks. And I still do. I’m comforted knowing that I’m not alone in this. That others – far smarter and wiser and more worldly than me – have also battled this demon, and have come out stronger and happier for having been brave enough to do it. No. Getting and staying sober is not easy. But you’re 100% on the mark when you say that it takes time to experience the uplift that sobriety brings. But it does happen – and the rewards are immeasurable. So thank you. And all the brave warriors all over the world who link together here, providing strength and hope to others.
I am 3 and a half years sober and began my journey away from alcohol with your words and the help of other great blogs. I am on a rhythm where I sometimes forget I even have a problem. But I look eagerly for your words at least once a week. Sometimes they are very repetitive, and that is just exactly what I need. Because this disease is repetitive. It lurks in every shadow waiting to pop out at a rough spot or a celebration. Gratitude keeps my devouring your steady reminder of the issues we all face.
Agree with Janet, thank you. Always. One month away from 1 year the longest I have ever been without 1 drop of alcohol could not be happier:$ happy day everyone x
Thank you. I have been sober for 10 months now and never found your words to be trite nor the words of all the incredible souls who post here. I needed them in the beginning to help me through the rough times, I need them now to remind myself how incredibly far I have come, and will no doubt need them for the rest of my life. Quitting was truly the best, and yes the bravest thing I have ever done. Now, when I even entertain the notion of “going back” I realize what I would lose. The joy I now palpably feel upon waking every day, the love and respect I see in the eyes of my family, the new found sense of strength of self, on and on and on. The achingly tough stuff I had to work through was sometimes ugly, but it has allowed me to move forward in a way I can be proud of. So, keep on writing and saying the words that may help another find their truths and freedom.
Nice words yourself there Janetv:)