• My routine. My peace. My solitude.

    Release.

    My first moments alone with myself and thoughts in 11 days. Sorrow, sadness like no other, regrets, disappointments, a cloudy sky and heavy air. No birds swooping and dancing today. The crickets play but the music is not joyful, no longer their symphony. It is still. So still.

    11 days spent watching a life slip away and a family shatter. 11 days praying, hoping, worrying. Frantic notes scribbled to keep up with the trail of doctors and tests. Bottomless coffee cups to fill the hands and stay on alert.

    11 days of a family brought back together out of love and despair, laying aside dysfunctions and coexisting in a single room to hold each other up and make sense of what was happening to a beautiful soul. Pain was felt and multiplied, as was the laughter that came in the dark stillness of the night as we kept watch with hope and unrealistic optimism of miracles.

    9 days of machines, whooshing and beeping in a chorus that permeated the room leaving us breathless when the pattern spiked or dipped. 2 days of silence. Waiting. Watching that life slip away no matter how tightly we tried to hang on.

    Counting breaths.
    Counting beats.

    A young mother taken. 6 young lives forever damaged and broken. A family left behind to make sense of a senseless situation. 11 days that changed everything.

    The air is heavy and still this morning.

    • Oh @soberheart my heart aches for you and your family. There are no words. Know that you have us behind you fiercely supporting you in this stillness. xoxo

    • I’m so very sorry for your loss @soberheart. I can feel your grief through your words and can tell you are feeling a lot of pain. Much love xoxo

    • oh no so sorry @soberheart.. sending much love to you. xxxxx

    • @soberheart 💐 Also no words. But want you to know my heart goes out to you.

    • It’s rough, we went through it with my sister 37 years ago, a shorter, five day vigil. One thing I’ll never forget about it, is how much it meant to have others show up in support. It meant so much. Time helps, but the hurt has never completely gone away. I guess we humans live with scars of all sorts. Very sorry for your loss, @soberheart. You’re right, there’s no making sense of it. But I have to think that your presence helped others, a charitable act, given as how it affected you.

    • Sending love xxxx

    • I have been thinking of you since the post 8 days ago. That post sent chills through my soul and made my decision FIRM to stay AF for good. I woke up this morning on my day 12 and thought I got to find that post again and make a comment. And then I saw your update. I literally shed tears of sadness and am sending you love and prayers as I wrtite this. The sweet young soul of your SIL is giving me a gift to stay iron clad in sobriety. Your words recalling the days were so poetic and moving and has thrown a wake up call life saver to all of us. May she rest in peace. And you are a warrior for all of us. Thank you.

    • So very very sorry. I wish you and your family peace in the days ahead.

    • My condolences for your loss. How sad and awful a way to lose a loved one. I will think of you today while I lay a memorial for my Mum.

    • I’m sorry @soberheart. You and your family are in my thoughts.

    • I’m so sorry. 🙁 Sending much love. xxx

  • Sometimes staying sober means sitting in a parking lot eating fast food and reading posts here in the only moment of solitude of the day.
    Burger King is delicious in this moment. It’s better than booze and is still giving a little comfort and relief.
    Family meeting at my house this afternoon to discuss ongoing care and quality of life decisions for SIL. thank you all for your support.

  • Day 84. I have not drank.
    I don’t know why I haven’t. I thought I wanted it so much to dull this pain of my SIL condition. I went to the liquor store and got wine and vodka and beer. The thought of drinking it is there but it’s not whispering sweetly in my ear of how good I’ll feel. It is a haunting voice of how much I’m needed right now and that I just can’t have it. And so it all sits unopened and I am still sitting, feeling every emotion at full force. And it’s hard and it hurts more than I have hurt in a very long time. But I’m here, not nursing a hangover but making necessary bcalls early on a Sunday morning. I am on the porch, my favorite spot, having way too much coffee, crying, and doing what needs to be done.
    We saw the neurologist yesterday. The MRI shows severe brain damage from the lack of oxygen. Her basal ganglia is an area that has been affected. The Dr said damage is on both sides and most prominently the back. We are coming to terms that she will not wake up, and if she does she will not have cognitive function,only reflexive. We are supposed to get together today to discuss the next steps.
    I miss my kids, I am just going back and forth with my MIL to the hospital. But it is only temporary and I try to live them as hard as I can when I’m home.
    She has COPD and wasn’t taking care of herself. Continuing to smoke and not doing what the Dr said. I am guilty of this as well, many of us are. But you never think the worst case will happen to you. I am angry at her, I am angry at her husband, my heart is breaking for her 5 kids who have to finish growing up without a mother. It is all so much.

    • I want to comment in 2 directions.First- Congratulations!! and way to go being strong, not opening those bottles though they were right there. Way to go reminding yourself how you need to be sober to deal with this painful situation.

      And the 2nd part. I am so sorry you are going through this. I recently went through something similar with my sister. It is heartbreaking, it is infuriating, it is painful, and ohh soooo hard. My thoughts, prayers and heart are with you.

    • I’m so sad for you and you family. And I am glad you have found the strength to stay sober.

    • I’m very sorry that you are going through this very difficult time @SoberHeart but you are managing to stay sober through this which is important, mainly for yourself but it is the best way to be in general. One thing concerns me. You’d just mentioned 2 days ago that you wanted to drink and were glad that there was no alcohol in the house but now you’ve made this big purchase which is a step in the wrong direction. You say that you are angry with your SIL because of her life choices and believe that’s what has brought her to this point but can you try to think ahead of how damaging yourself by drinking is not a solution and that you’ll only be adding more despair to the situation at hand. Maybe the booze that you purchased is for others and I’ve misinterpreted the idea behind it. If it was purchased for yourself, then I highly recommend getting rid of it. I drank not to long ago over things in life that I could not change. It did change the way I felt which was a million times worse.

    • Wow. This is really heartbreaking. I am so sorry this is the place your life is in right now. We are here for you. Stay strong.

    • Oh, @Soberheart, I am so sorry. Can you use Your sorry to propel your sobriety? It’s the greatest thing you could do to honor you SIL. I lost my brother a year ago and it was horrid. He too had harmed his body with drinking and cigarettes, but was a beautiful and gentle soul. 💜💜💜

  • SoberHeart posted an update 1 week, 1 day ago

    Hi all. It’s been a trying and exhausting few days. My SIL is in the ICU and things are bleak at the moment. We are waiting for her to “wake up” and so far there has not been any progress. She has not moved or opened her eyes, she is in a ventilator and we are all just hoping she comes through ok.
    I have not drank. I wanted too. I REALLY wanted to. Thanking God it was not in the house. I fought with my self for the first time in almost 3 months on the way home from the hospital. But I played it through and made the right choice.
    Family from out of state is staying with us indefinitely, I need to be present and clear headed.
    I am drained. Going back to work tomorrow, at least for part of the day to catch up. This is absolutely devastating. She is young, has young kids, and it could have been prevented had she made the lifestyle changes the doctors ordered. A wake up to all of us. We have control over what we put into our body. Alcohol, cigarettes, other drugs. Our choices affect so much more than just ourselves.

    • I’m so sorry about your SIL. What happened? I applaud you for making the right decisions so you can get through this emotionally in the right way and be there for your family. Yes, I’m definitely more aware about what I put into my body that is for sure. I’ll say a prayer for you all.

    • God that’s terrible you poor thing. Sorry to hear your sister in law is so unwell 🙁 drinking will not help her or you so don’t even go there eh

    • Devastating, I’m sorry to read this. Well done not drinking.
      Keep us posted.

    • It sounds like a living nightmare.

    • I am really sorry to hear about your SIL being in the ICU. Lots of love and healing her way. oxoxoxoxoxo

    • Oh I’m so sorry. How absolutely devastating. Good for you for not drinking. xoxo

    • So sorry, to hear this, @soberheart, congrats to you on staying strong, must have been the most difficult decision for you. gosh, just horrible about your sil. just horrible. thinking of you with compassion.

    • This all sounds like a really tough time for you. Hugs from me xo

    • I’m so sorry. I hope she pulls through. Sending you a cyber {{hug}}.

  • SoberHeart posted an update 2 weeks ago

    Happy Saturday friends!
    My favorite day of the week. I have spent the last hour on the porch writing and enjoying the morning breeze and birds chattering.

    I had such a great night! In an attempt to do more in the evenings I got myself up and decided the family was going into town. There was a night market and music for first Friday. We ended up at a restaurant in town and had a wonderful dinner, all of us together for the first time in awhile. Afterwards we walked home and hubs and I enjoyed coffee and conversation under the moonlight on the porch. That was followed with a round of Apples to Apples with my girls that lasted almost 2 hours. I was with it and playing a game until after 10p.m. Then I put myself to bed and had a wonderful refreshing sleep.
    This is what sober looks like.
    Have a great day all!

    • This sounds so wonderful @soberheart! Enjoying your family to the fullest. “This is what sober looks like” Love it!! You have a great day as well xo

    • What a lovely evening that sounds – followed by a refreshing sleep. Now THAT is living

  • SoberHeart posted a new activity comment 2 weeks, 2 days ago

    Fantastic! Congratulations!

  • Hi all,
    On the eve of day 75 and life is feeling pretty good.
    Yesterday I posted about my frustrations with my job. I got several helpful responses and I thank you for them. Today I am trying to flip this negative thinking. I am not a victim, whatever circumstances I am in are my own doing. Either through concession or fault. Another friend had a great exercise for these situations. She said to write out the thoughts, really the emotions if what I feel is wrong, unfair, or what I am angry about. Then remove all of those extra bits until I am left with a simple list without the emotions. That remainder list can then be worked through. It helped to vent yesterday. And today I was able to find more appreciation for what I have there as well as accept that this situation is only temporary. I already AM taking the action to change it by going to school. In the meantime, reflecting on what makes me unhappy and finding solutions rather than stewing and feeling the victim is what I have to do.

    On another note, I am participating in a book study on The Book of Joy. So much I have gotten from it already. The biggest came in the preface. It says, “No dark fate determines the future. We do.”
    We are the only ones responsible for our lives. Our decisions lead us down the path. No other force creates our future. Taking control of the power I gave alcohol, and giving that power back to myself is the single greatest act that will propel my future.

  • SoberHeart posted a new activity comment 2 weeks, 3 days ago

    @erica375 thank you for the suggestion, I just downloaded it and I’m going to start using it today

  • Hi friends.
    I think I am in desperate need of a vacation. I just need to not go to my job for a bit, it is really getting to me.
    I only get 1 week of vacation (5 days) a year and I had to use it back in the early spring to travel for a competition with my daughter. But if I don’t get a break from that place I am going to say something I’ll regret later. All the little things feel like big things. I am dreading going today. And every time I think there is no end in sight, no break for a YEAR??? OMG, it’s overwhelming and bringing me down.
    I can’t leave until I finish school, the plus here is that they will accommodate my school schedule. And I am grateful for that. But I need a break.

    • Have you tried meditation? I use the Insight Timer app.
      ~Erica

    • Are you able to get a doctors note for sick leave.

    • @soberheart – ((hugs)) sounds like it is sucking air from your beautiful light! I hope you can find some fun in the meantime.

    • Can you take a sick day or two? Better yet, call it a mental health day to renew your soul. I feel for you … it’s no fun being at a job that is draining and there’s no end in sight. ❤️

    • yes, i was thinking sick days may be the thing too.

    • One week – heck, do you have a union?! How many sick days?
      I am feeling positive about my new full time-no-holiday-for-ages role, but my acupuncturist said my body was close to depressed even if my mind was ok. Bleak news hahaha so trying to do some relaxing and healing things – and exercise. Trouble is, I sometimes add on weekend work, and I think it is a bit unwise.
      And you are studying too????!
      I hope today is a bit better. Breathe. Take pauses – if you can

    • @soberheart I can’t imagine so little time off each year! I accumulate time off on a rotating basis and can take it whenever I want, if something comes up I can trade with a coworker and fill out a pay request. This year I let mine accumulate and took a full three weeks of vacation.

  • SoberHeart posted a new activity comment 2 weeks, 4 days ago

    Way to go @sam27. I am so proud of you. You just got that much stronger by fighting the urge.

  • Hi All,
    Another sober day. Feeling grateful today. I have so much more in my life without alcohol. Everything I did, or tried to do, while drinking is greater now. AAnd so many things I had forgotten, given up, or just didn’t really think I could do are possible now. I read everything. EVERYTHING. Books, newspapers, magazines, texts for school, online journals, I am a voracious reader sans booze. And the best part is that I retain what I’m reading.
    My listening skills have improved. While still a work in progress, I am more patient and can wait my turn to speak now. It’s amazing how much more you understand of a conversation and about the person speaking when you can give them your full attention and actually let them say what they need to. This manifests at home, work, with friends, even in small talk with people while out and about. Listening to another’s full thought and taking time to process their message has lead to less irritation on my part and the ability to accept different points of view as just that and not a personal attack.
    It’s an exceptional world out there. Lifting the veil of alcohol has allowed me to see that. I have a lot to offer it and I am excited to have the drive and desire to do something impacting. Getting more involved in my community to start and eventually on a larger scale through my career once I have my degree in hand in a few short months.
    Life was dark with alcohol, and now it is full of light.

    • Life with alcohol is like having this preoccupation constantly there with you in every other thing you are doing, so that you can never put 100% of yourself into anything at all.

    • Wonderful post. Degree in hand, free from a toxic carcinogen, hearing people, getting involved in the community – LIVING!!!

    • Do you think not being a good listener and interrupting people was all from the alcohol? I am working on this too. I think I have a monkey brain that goes so fast it is literally like I have to hold onto the chair to be a good listener sometimes, especially with slow speakers who are really slow to get to the point. It takes ALL of my energy to focus and be quiet. It’s a challenge. I think it’s me but alcohol makes it worse for sure.

  • SoberHeart posted a new activity comment 2 weeks, 4 days ago

    Hey @frog, it’s such a great feeling when we are present and not clouded by booze. And your little chatty appreciated it too I am sure.
    I think you will find this ted talk very interesting. It is on Gray Area drinking. That space where you say you fall into, drinking moderately most of the time, but still unhappy with alcohol in your life. It’s a very informative piece. I am interested to hear your thoughts on the subject.

  • SoberHeart posted a new activity comment 2 weeks, 5 days ago

    If moderation were an option for you, you wouldn’t be here.
    Stick to sober, it will never steer your wrong.

  • Hi all
    Day 71. Just not feeling it. I’m sad, blah,just kinda here. Feeling emotional and weepy the last few days. I know it will pass, but I wish it would already.
    Since I stopped drinking I get sad often. I don’t want to do anything or be around anyone. When I drank it usually came out as anger. Now it’s just this gray cloud. In a few days it will pass and I’ll feel good again for awhile. And the good days feel REALLY good. I feel like my emotions, whatever part of the spectrum they are on, are always intense now. I hope I mellow out a bit in time and that I can maintain feeling happy for longer strings before sadness takes over.
    Have a good Monday, off to work for me.

    • Day 71, I can only hope and pray to get where you are SoberHeart. I hope you’re better soon.

    • Hi @soberheart – I’m sorry you are feeling sad today but you are so right, it will pass soon and then you will be feeling better. One foot in front of the other and soon enough a rainbow will show through. Hugs xo

    • I’m sorry about the “blah”, that’s never fun. Remember, you’ve removed artificially induced dopamine and it will take some time for your brain to produce it again. Right now it’s bouncing around between highs and lows looking for stasis. Right about 4 months I felt spontaneous inner happiness welling up in me. Up until then I was quiet, steadfast, but open everyday. Sometimes gloomy, mostly serious, and sometimes happy. Now, I’m mostly peaceful and happy everyday. It’ll get better soon!

      • @SoberHeart I am often feeling depressed right now too, even though I feel relieved to not constantly be drinking or hungover… @Jocord your reply here is so uplifting. It makes me look forward to that feeling of spontaneous happiness. I remember way back when I was a teenager my aunt said to me (seemingly out of the blue one day) “you are just such a happy kid. I just love that about you”. I totally lost that when I left home, started college and started drinking. It’s been gone for a long time but I do remember it. I remember being upbeat regularly, that it was just my personality. Booze stole that from me and I want it back.

  • SoberHeart posted a new activity comment 3 weeks ago

    Congrats on getting through the first month! It’s a great accomplishment. The concert sounds like it was awesome. And you will remember it all! How awesome to wake up the day after and only have the happy memories and not a headache and hangover. Great work!!

  • SoberHeart posted an update 3 weeks ago

    Happy Saturday friends,
    It’s my favorite day of the week. An entire day to spend having fun, hanging out with my kids, and doing for Me.
    My good choices last night mean I was up before the sun, have had my private time to write and think, and now I’m sitting in the salon at 8 a.m. while my daughter gets the haircut I promised her we would do today. No disappointment or broken promises because I am sick and tired with a hangover, the result of irresponsible and selfish choices the night before. No, I am happy, clear, rested, and building trust by following through on what I said.
    I had opportunity to drink last night. I was offered “enhanced” tonic and lime (no thanks, just plain is great) and the bottle of wine was passed down to me, (I’m good, I have my iced tea). I know what I want and it is not a life dulled by alcohol. I want repairative sleep, bright mornings, and days filled with living. It was my choice last night. No one was going to pour it into me, and I chose to say no.
    And it was a fantastic evening filled with good conversation, delicious food, and family. No embarrassment or shame. No stumbling or knocking things over. No off color comments or obnoxiousness.
    Choose sober. Have a fantastic Saturday!

  • SoberHeart posted a new activity comment 3 weeks, 1 day ago

    Enjoy your date tonight. I think it’s excellent that you have set the precedent from the start with this person that you do not drink. It’s 100% authentic and fresh, I think it helps in sticking with it long term and eliminates expectation from the other person. You don’t drink. Period.
    Careful with that rash, I would definitely go to the Dr. If it happens again. I don’t know if stress can cause hives? Maybe? Something to check into though.
    Have a wonderful day, you are doing so well.

  • SoberHeart posted a new activity comment 3 weeks, 1 day ago

    This is an awesome post. Great job! A shower can do so much can’t it?

    • Hi buddy, I love my shower in the morning and night. I hate getting out! If I had an indoor pool, I would turn into a mermaid.

  • Good morning friends,
    It’s Friday…do you have your plan?
    Have you worked out your day and evening to include tasty al free drinks, maybe a treat, plenty to do to keep you occupied, it even looking forward to an early and long sleep?
    Fridays are precious. I feel like they set the tone for the weekend. Every Friday I choose to not drink equals another Saturday morning I will get to wake up,enjoy the morning, and have a day brimming with possibility.
    Choose sober this Friday, friends. You will never regret not drinking.

    My Friday Plan:
    -Work all day and finishing a school paper
    -Dinner at my parents tonight, I have San Pellegrino and ginger beer to take with me chilling in the fridge now.
    -Decaf coffee preset to be brewed and ready when we get home from dinner.
    – Walking the dog once we return
    – Favorite comfy PJs are in the dryer and will be waiting for me.
    – shower, reading (starting The Book of Joy), bed.
    Have a beautiful day all!

  • Good morning friends,
    A powerful morning already and I wanted to share with all of you.
    I was reading the paper (yes, a real newspaper…I am 38 and love the newspaper) and scanned the obituaries. One in particular caught my eye. It began, “Many think going to rehab is a blot on their record but it transformed the man.” This gentleman had gone to rehab and became a sought after AA and medical speaker. He founded several AA chapters himself and “…brought his light and a message of hope to many needing sobriety.” After becoming sober he left his job as a mechanic and became a surgical assistant, performing so well in this new career he was awarded special honors generally reserved for doctors.
    I often wonder if I will only be remembered for the dark, alcohol fueled period of my life. But this obituary gives me, and I hope some of you, hope that this second act we are giving ourselves is truly an opportunity to shine. We can make the most of this sober life. Use it as the drive to become something better, to be a light for others. Seeing this man, who had no spouse or children, remembered so fondly by those whose lives he impacted for the accomplishments his sobriety afforded him is an inspiration.
    I hope this inspires some of you to continue on this path. That this is our best life and that it is ours to do something with. Life can be ordinary or it can be great.
    Have a beautiful day, friends

    • beautiful indeed @SoberHeart — and makes me realize that for ME- drinking really is a selfish act. It is ALL about making ME feel -happy, or confident, or charming… yuck. this post was a cool reminder. thank you.

    • Thanks for sharing this lovely post. I, too, wonder if when people see me now (not yet thinking about when I’m gone. Lol). all they think of is my nasty, dark drinking stage.

    • Beautiful post… I second the others. Thanks for sharing this! oxoxox

  • SoberHeart posted a new activity comment 3 weeks, 5 days ago

    They are very sneaky, and look for the smallest crack to seep back in. We are all worth so much more than alcohol can ever give…which is nothing!

  • SoberHeart posted a new activity comment 3 weeks, 5 days ago

    Thank you, @freedom1025. You have a great day too

  • SoberHeart posted a new activity comment 3 weeks, 5 days ago

    Hi @tom4500, good to see you here! This is solid advice, and really does work so well.

  • SoberHeart posted a new activity comment 3 weeks, 5 days ago

    It is wonderful you are there for your dad. That is such a difficult time in your life, but doing it sober will make it all easier to process. Removing the alcohol will also remove an added layer of stressand discomfort.
    Sending you hugs and strength.

  • SoberHeart posted a new activity comment 3 weeks, 5 days ago

    WOO HOO! You made it and day 7 will be a beautiful one!

  • SoberHeart posted a new activity comment 3 weeks, 5 days ago

    Congratulations! 50 days is amazing! Doesn’t it feel great to see the changes in yourself recognized by others? Keep it up!

  • SoberHeart posted a new activity comment 3 weeks, 5 days ago

    Wow! Fantastic job making great choices this weekend! That was a tough position you were in and you handled it beautifully. You are going home with great memories and pride in having accomplished so much. That is success, right there.
    And I think taking up apple pie is so overlooked as an interest, 🙂 haha

  • Good morning friends,
    Another week begins. The heat is stating to come down and lots of rain expected later today. I hope it comes this evening, i love taking in a good thunderstorm on the porch. Nothing new to report. Upping my recovery focus a bit this week. I feel like I am getting too confident and worry about complacency settling in. I need to be diligent and keep a sharp watch on myself. Last night I found thoughts and memories of alcohol kept coming on. Not happy memories even, just remembering. It didn’t make me want to drink, but I don’t like that they were even there. So staying focused, filling my days with activity and things to work my mind and keep it from getting bored and venturing off to places it shouldn’t go.
    I am worthy and deserving of a great life, and that life does not include alcohol.

    • Hi @SoberHeart! You are on to those sneaky thoughts of alcohol – let them pass by. I remember getting a thought during my work day of picking up wine, and it was like I had a direct order from my brain. Nope, never again. You are so worthy of a great life. xo

      • They are very sneaky, and look for the smallest crack to seep back in. We are all worth so much more than alcohol can ever give…which is nothing!

    • You ARE worthy indeed! Have a great day. 😊❤️

    • Hi Soberheart; not a lot to add to your fine post, but I wanted to say hello. I still get thoughts and memories of alcohol too, but the play it forward tool takes me back to the reality that alcohol and I do not go together well at all. Don’t like the stuff; ruins lives, shortens lives. Really nasty, serious issues. And, I love my sobriety. The brain’s a tricky thing though, that’s why I have rules. Anyway, I blabber, but it’s great to see your name pop up!

  • PSA: If you have an Aldi’s grocery store look for this new drink they have. It’s called DRY. It’s a non al drink that is absolutely amazing. It comes in watermelon and pineapple. It’s slightly sweet, tastes like real fruit, and is bubbly. Very special and refreshing. It’s pricey at $6 a bottle, but such a treat.

  • SoberHeart posted a new activity comment 3 weeks, 6 days ago

    Fantastic!! That wine witch is so annoying. She just can’t take a hint.
    Awesome job pushing her away!

  • Good morning, friends…
    Hope everyone is enjoying the weekend!
    Just trying to keep cool here. Looks like we might get a nice big thunderstorm later and hopefully that knocks the temperature and humidity down some.
    I stopped at the grocery store real quick yesterday around 9:30a.m. and couldn’t believe how full the liquor store lot was already. Everyone racing in to get their booze to suffer through the heat with. I am so glad I am not longer tied to alcohol. No more panic at not having enough,keeping track of which liquor store I went to last in my rotation, the hiding of empties, sneaking around, trying to fake sober around neighbors, friends, my kids.
    Alcohol is liar. It gives nothing and takes everything. It makes me dishonest and ashamed. 63 days alcohol free and I am on my way to living my best, true life.

    • Isn’t that exhausting?!! I realised today I haven’t been to the supermarket for four days. I’d go at least once a day, maybe twice even three times at least before, juggling money, spending money I shouldn’t be spending, nothing else mattered. Of course it did but blimey if I had to forgo booze (it never happened) Jeeze you’d better stay out my way. Soon as I opened my red eyes hiding in my puffy face somewhere above wine stained lips and teeth, my mind was on it for the day. So glad like you that is gone, it’s like being let out of prison. Such a bloody relief!!

    • congrats on 63 days, @soberheart.

    • Great job on 63 days @SoberHeart. On super high heat index days like these we’ve been having i remember drinking my favorite “refreshing” summer beverage alllll day and evening then sweating gallons the next super hot day with a nasty hangover – Counting the minutes until I could drink all over again. And. Again. And. Again. NO MORE!!!

    • @Soberheart – reading your post…ugh! Reminds me so frankly of doing all of those same things. Why the hell did I think it was an okay way to live… going to different stores so the EMPLOYEES wouldn’t think I drank too much, how did I think that was in any way NORMAL? Ew, just thinking about it strengthens my resolve. It really saddens me to think how much I had to hide from the entire world. What a fraud I felt like to everyone around me. I even used to make judgemental comments about how much my PARENTS drink because I was so good at hiding my drinking nobody in my life thought I had a problem. What a gross person I was. I am so so relieved to let all that bullshit go. Alcohol is such a lying, awful substance. Good riddance.

  • SoberHeart posted a new activity comment 4 weeks ago

    Oh @mari135, my heart breaks for you my dear. Your post is so full of emotion. I am sorry that you didn’t get the recognition you so deserved from your parents. You are such an accomplished woman, and an inspiration to many, myself included.
    The pain is fair and it is good that you can express it. Having the acceptance of our parents, even if we don’t like them, is incredibly powerful and a natural desire.
    It doesn’t substitute, but I am proud of how far you have come. Your story is amazing. You have overcome obstacles that many have not been able to and you continue to grow into this full, purposeful life. Keep growing and shining. You are a star.

    • @mari135 I’m so sorry that you didn’t have the mother you (& we all) deserve to get.
      You’re making me appreciate the Mum I’ve got that I do not value enough.
      Thank you for reminding me that I’ve been lucky and not everyone is.
      I echo everything @soberheart has beautifully expressed above. You are amazing x

  • SoberHeart posted an update 4 weeks ago

    Darn, I had a whole long post here this morning that has now disappeared. Oh well…

    It’s my favorite day of the week, Saturday. I was out on the porch writing early this morning and the air was already thick and heavy. Supposed to feel like 110 today.
    Hubs and I had a fabulous breakfast at this little cafe this morning and then wandered the farmers market. It was wonderful despite the heat.
    Now the rest of the day is just waiting to be filled. And that’s what Saturday is all about. My goal is to lay my head down at night feeling good about what I accomplished. And along the way making choices that create a great life. Saying yes to new things, going out of my comfort zone, or just trying something new. It’s all right there for us. We just have to go for it.
    Today that was trying a new restaurant and later learning to crochet with my daughter.
    Happy sober Saturday! Do something that makes you happy!

    • I keep singing “Be different! Be nice! Just smile, I promise it will change your life!” ☺️✌🏻️

    • Oh damn about post. That is happening very rarely now but still good to copy as you go if a long one. And the delete, edit and save are still very close I think – @danthedevtest – if any $$$ or time to do adjustments, that one is a goodie I think – I just checked – cancel close to save if one has edited – I guess cancel deletes too? Can’t be bothered trying

  • SoberHeart posted a new activity comment 4 weeks ago

    I am really proud of you. You are working so hard, keep it up. It will get better. Physically and mentally, it will. Just hang on and keep moving forward. Stopping now would just mean going through all of this again from the start. No one wants to do the tough stuff again.

  • SoberHeart posted a new activity comment 4 weeks ago

    Promise yourself right now that no matter what there is no alcohol today. Have lots of nin Al drinks available, keep one in your hand always if that helps ( it does for me). And plan out your day with as much as you can. When you feel an urge coming go to your list. And don’t be afraid to walk away. Those first couple weeks I spent a lot of time alone. Your sobriety is all that matters right now. Do whatever is required to keep it safe. You can do this!!

  • SoberHeart posted a new activity comment 4 weeks ago

    Wow! That is a fantastic way to spend a Saturday. Sober weekends are the best! Have fun today!

  • SoberHeart posted a new activity comment 4 weeks, 1 day ago

    Now it’s just figuring out where to go @aprilsfool 🙂

    • Nothing to figure out really. Think about it as a time for discovering. Stuff will pique your interests. Go there. Don’t worry about doing any one thing – do a million. The sky’s the limit when your sober. Really will be better when this heat breaks though.

  • SoberHeart posted a new activity comment 4 weeks, 1 day ago

    Same to you @womackm! Welcome to a beautiful day 5!

  • SoberHeart posted a new activity comment 4 weeks, 1 day ago

    Hi @kit, good to see you! I am just back here myself. Glad you are doing well.

  • SoberHeart posted a new activity comment 4 weeks, 1 day ago

    Hi @jennah, wow, thank god you are ok. What an ordeal to go through. How long will you be in the hospital? Sending positive vibes your way.

  • Good morning all and Happy Friday,
    Terrible night’s sleep and woke feeling hung over with a headache and groggy. Ugh, how did I do this every single day? Anyway, I am just feeling so restless. The heat is making it hard to do a lot. We don’t have central a/c so I really haven’t been cooking, which has left a nice gap in my evenings. But it’s more than just that. There is so much time to fill everyday. I work full time, have a summer class, read a lot, kids, etc, and there is still so much time. I need to find something else to put into my life. I have a gym membership, but I feel guilty being away from home even more. My oldest daughter and I want to learn to crochet, so maybe we will start that this weekend.
    This is the next phase in my recovery, and I am grateful for that. I am so grateful to be through the woods and distanced from the constant cravings and internal struggles of the early early days. I am in the light now and ready for more. Part of recovery is living. And I am responsible for the quality of my life. If I am unhappy, unfulfilled, or bored it is up to me to take the actions to change those feelings. What can I do to enable growth? What are my priorities? Right now I need to focus on discovering a new source for joy and fulfillment. We cannot grow and improve ourselves if we remain stagnant.
    Have a great Friday all!

    • but don’t forget to love and constantly congratulate yourself. you are doing so well! : )

    • Yup. Definitely sounds like that next exciting phase of being AF to me … the door opening … thoughts about priorities, new sources of joy, fulfillment, taking responsibility to ‘take actions to change’, filling time with worthwhile activity – or no activity at all. Growth. All the really good stuff starts to happen now. Hang in there. This oppressive heat will end eventually (hot as hell here too!) … and ditto to @wamackm. Enjoy the peace.

      • Now it’s just figuring out where to go @aprilsfool 🙂

        • Nothing to figure out really. Think about it as a time for discovering. Stuff will pique your interests. Go there. Don’t worry about doing any one thing – do a million. The sky’s the limit when your sober. Really will be better when this heat breaks though.

    • @SoberHeart love that “part of recovery is living” brilliant x

    • “I am responsible for the quality of my life.” I love that!! You sound like you’re in a really good place.

  • SoberHeart posted a new activity comment 1 month ago

    Yes, very common. Your brain is throwing a temper tantrum because you are refusing to give it what (it thinks) be it wants. But the reality is, depression and anxiety are heightened from alcohol use. When the high of the substance wears off our brain can’t make those happy connections, this leads to the depression/anxiety, to more drinking, to an endless cycle. You are starting day 4, so now your body is rid of the alcohol completely for the first time. This is where real work begins. Having a plan in place for when that evil voice starts. Do it NOW, before you are dealing with an urge, sweaty palms, and a racing heart. Be prepared. And more than anything accept that it is your responsibility to not take a drink. No one else can make that choice for you. So, decide right now that today you are 100% responsible for your actions. Write out everything you are going to do when the voice starts and be ready with your favorite non al drinks and yummy food. You CAN do this.

    • thank you for this @SoberHeart Ugh. im feeling weak and afraid, but now I have lots of information and ideas. Thank you!! Ive been thru SO much, I will NOT be a slave to a bottle of cheap white wine! Im way too strong for that! #warrior

  • SoberHeart posted a new activity comment 1 month ago

    Hi @freedom1025! Feels great to be back. And to get back to your comment yesterday, yes I am still in school. I went all in and have been taking as many courses as I can. Happy to report I am about to begin my final year. Graduating Spring 2020! Kids are doing wonderfully; working, driving, and enjoying the summer break. How are things with you?

  • SoberHeart posted a new activity comment 1 month ago

    Don’t listen to that voice! Use your son as motivation. He may not be with you, but how would he feel if you drank? Probably disappointed because he knows that you are stronger than that. Make a plan for these moments. It makes a tremendous difference. I have several plans written out. They are a list of things I MUST do as well as what I will drink. The next time the voice starts go and brush your teeth. Seriously, that may be the single best advice I have received on getting sober. Make that #1 in your plan. Mine then includes walking the dog, taking a shower, doing a load of laundry, vacuuming, sorting mail/papers/newspapers, scrub the pet dishes…you get the idea. Before I get even half way through the urge has passed and I feel so good. And if all else fails, go to bed. It is the cure all.
    Good job posting about it, sometimes just getting it out and reading it back makes a big difference.

  • SoberHeart posted a new activity comment 1 month ago

    Congrats on 60 days! I am sharing the 60 day mark with you 🙂 Greta job turning down the drinks. Good luck with moving, never an enjoyable process, but at least you will be clear and present. No hangovers in sight.

  • SoberHeart posted an update 1 month ago

    Good Morning friends,
    60 days! 2 months. And it feels incredible! Thank you for the warm welcome back yesterday, so much kindness in this place. Nothing too life changing to share today. Puttering on through my classes and have my fingers crossed that I get an internship I inquired about. They asked for my portfolio so it is looking good! Other than that, my house is clean, I am happy, and life goes on. That’s enough for me.
    I would like to share a bit of information that was helpful for me this time around. It is regarding the kindling effect which I had not heard of before. Kindling is a condition that develops with several attempts at eliminating alcohol. In short it can cause withdrawal symptoms and the overall discomfort to worsen with each attempt. Here is a link for anyone interested. https://www.alcohol.org/effects/kindling-withdrawal/
    Have a great day all!

    • So nice to log in and see your morning posts again. Glad to hear things are going well! Congrats on 2 months.

      • Hi @freedom1025! Feels great to be back. And to get back to your comment yesterday, yes I am still in school. I went all in and have been taking as many courses as I can. Happy to report I am about to begin my final year. Graduating Spring 2020! Kids are doing wonderfully; working, driving, and enjoying the summer break. How are things with you?

    • JM replied 1 month ago

      Hi @SoberHeart, nice to see you here + congrats on 60 days! Interesting article, thanks!

    • Interesting article – those symptoms listed as a result of “kindling”…. yup, yup, yup… I can vouch for those. Keeping that in mind while struggling with temptation this week. I really REALLY don’t want to start over again! Well done on 60 days. 🙂

    • Wow, that’s scary! And reinforcing. I don’t ever want another day 1!

    • Awesome.stuff! Congratulations!!!

  • SoberHeart posted a new activity comment 1 month ago

    @frog that sounds like a pretty great day to me. You sound happy

  • SoberHeart posted a new activity comment 1 month ago

    Congrats on 30 days! That is fantastic! I think in time the acceptance that drinking is not something we can do, even just 1, will become more ingrained and natural. Continuing to play it forward and refrain from romanticizing the drink is the best thing you can do to build sober muscles and teach your brain that alcohol is a poison not a treat.
    Keep on going! You are doing great!

    • jmtn replied 1 month ago

      Thanks! @soberheart I like how you said “refrain from romanticizing the drink” …that’s exactly what I keep occasionally doing. I’ll keep working on it! As a funny note, when I was at a big work dinner event recently (where they gave out FOUR drink tickets per person for one evening!) I ordered club soda in a wine glass. A lady behind me excitedly asked the bar tender “oo, what is THAT?!” thinking it was some fancy alcoholic drink. When he told her it was club soda she looked deflated. 😉 It made me giggle that my drink could look so romantic and enticing!

  • SoberHeart posted a new activity comment 1 month ago

    @newstart100, happy to be back! I am afraid I haven’t been watching it much this season. One of my biggest changes the last few months, I really don’t watch much TV anymore. But I might need to look for it now you have reminded me

  • SoberHeart posted a new activity comment 1 month ago

    Hi @Chardano, wonderful to see you still here!

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