It must have started around the time I graduated from high school. At that time I was not yet aware of the lack of emotional support in my home, and suddenly I found myself lost on a university campus, trying to navigate life on my own. Now I understand that it was CPTSD, complex childhood trauma/post traumatic stress, but back then I figured I was just another college student, drinking, partying, having fun. Well, it wasn't fun anymore in my late 20's, when I would sometimes miss work due to having had a bottle of red wine on a week night. One glass often (almost always) turned into 3-6 or more. I remember one specific night, when I was 29, and I had finished a whole bottle of red wine by myself when a friend called to ask me to meet up for a glass of wine. We shared another bottle. Sitting there talking to my friend, I was wondering to myself "How on earth did you drink almost two bottles of wine?? This is not what normal people do. Or is it?" Becoming sober has been a two steps forward, one step back since then. I am happy to report that this year I have only had one drinking episode, and I am hopeful I stay away for good. It is just not worth risking even one more hangover. Speaking of which, I wish I could go back in time and hug my younger self, who was crouched on the bathroom floor in front of the toilet too many times. Crying, red veins popped underneath her eyes, yellow stomach acid coming out of her mouth in between dry heaving. There were nights of drunk calling or texting people, waking up covered in sweat, shame, and fear. The fear might have been the worst. All those years I was so scared of feeling and being me. Luckily I found a good therapist three years ago and have worked through and healed a lot of my traumatic experiences from childhood, but I want to keep an eye on self-care. It is too easy for me to slip back into self-loathing and fear and toxic shame. I want to be my own best friend and supporter, the person my inner child can trust to always have her back. Reading Mrs. D's book was one of the first things I did when I started looking around for actions to take to heal (or whatever it is you do to make it stop for good) my alcoholism. Ouch, that is still a bit hard to write down. Alcoholism. But I guess normal people just don't do what I did. They stop after one glass, and they do not have those day-long hangover days from one bottle of wine or more. So now that I created this profile, I will go back into the "real" world, where 99% of people look at me as normal and not an alcoholic. It has been a quiet "no more" journey, and even my husband thinks I never had a drinking problem. It is almost shocking at how good I hid it from others and myself. I don't want to drink anymore, and I don't ever ever ever want to feel hungover again. xoxo
Soberoo and loving it…still. In spite of the hard days…this has been the best thing I have ever done for myself…To kick this shit booze out of my life….and not end my days 2-3 times per week guzzling down Pinot Noir whilst having me a party-for-one with YouTube music videos (the same over and over again….) in my bedroom….by myself….
Thanks everyone who said a kind word (or stern!) about my brother. I will reach out to my sister in law via email when I am back home to touch base and discuss what she told me last night….For now I think it is best I let them cool down and get their family home space back….and then we take it from there. She has been angry at my brother since yesterday and they barely talked….so probably a good time for me to depart and go home this weekend….lol. Probably.
There will be more reflecting of this trip once I am home….and the usual morning posts to hold myself accountable….But….it feels like I have changed on this trip. Or I changed so much before this trip that coming “home” made me realize I am different now. Lots and LOTS of triggers…Damn triggers! Revisiting old addictive relationship patterns…..(Thanks to everyone who replied when I posted about that one guy from the past and his toddler manipulation game) ….and old stomping grounds….and old workplaces….and old drinking holes…..LOTS of being-drunk-memories…left and right……
I came to the USA as a functioning alcoholic…..I no longer drink but am still at risk of lapse/relapse and never want to forget the shit I escaped from. Shit drinking. (of red wine mostly, but I wasn’t one to reject 15 plus cans of Bud Light on a fun night out in the summer. Maybe more than 15, actually. Shit relationships. (with both myself and others, especially romantic ones) Shit behavior. (both on my end and also tolerating way too much shit from others) Shit mental health. (depression, anxiety, panic attacks, and so much toxic shame….ashamed of myself)
Not going back that way. Only forward now.
Also time to catch up on Prudence’s latest Euro-trip adventure…..Yeah!!!!
May you all feel hopeful today. Hope is a precious thing. I didn’t always have it….some days I still don’t….but it has gotten better. Sobriety gave me back a lot of hope.
Hi @mari135! I love those lines about hope. Alcohol widened, then slowly narrowed possibilities. And again, so many things are possible. 🌈 I think I missed a post about your brother. Safe trip home. 😃🏄