We didn’t know we were missing…

Lovely long term community member @hetiheti wrote in the Members Feed recently as she approached her 700th sober day; “this sober lark is just the best thing ever”. These sorts of statements are always fantastic to hear – especially for new members who are in the early days of giving up. It’s so beneficial when you are grinding your way through the hard early days to hear from longer-term members how good life can get when living alcohol-free becomes more the norm.

@hetiheti then went on to write something that really interested me. She wrote; “On this journey we have found ourselves, but we didn’t even know we were missing til we gave up this booze.”

We didn’t even know we were missing until we gave up the booze.

I absolutely love this sentiment. It sums up brilliantly the overarching feeling I have that only since I stopped drinking alcohol have I truly connected with myself, grown to understand my emotional landscape, properly settled into and appreciated my tiny place in the world, and properly opened my eyes to all the people around me.

And what is still so incredibly fascinating to me is that I had no clue I was missing these things until I discovered them.

How could I possibly know when I had deprived myself of a certain way of living – through my heavy, steady wine habit – all of my adult life.

I didn’t know what I was missing because I’d never experienced it. I’d never experienced any lengthy periods of time not bending my brain with booze. I drank alcohol regularly from the age of 15 to the age of 39.

I’d never dealt with any significant emotional event without turning to alcohol. I just drank all the time. And as a result I constantly interfered with my thinking and my brain chemistry.

Only after I took alcohol away and did a shitload of work to relearning how to live with no brain bending ever … and only after having ground my way through numerous difficult emotional situations without numbing, escaping or avoiding … did I realise what I was missing all along.

That sense of being truly alive. Of being a fully realised, grounded and robust human being. Of being me. Me in all my raw, sober glory.

This is just what I found. What are you missing that you don’t even realise is gone? What will you discover when you start to re-shape your life with no brain bending ever? What wonders have you to learn about and appreciate so greatly?

I’ll let @hetiheti have the last word….

@hetiheti “To those having troubles, please, please, please find the strength to continue. Because eventually it all just falls into place and you too will look back and say wow I did it!!!”

Yes you will.

Screen Shot 2016-07-10 at 3.40.19 PM

  1. Shann 5 years ago

    Oh my goodness, woke up this morning, drank too much again last night.
    Googled this and have read all day.
    I have been in tears reading everyone’s stories, I’m there, they are all me.
    Today is going to be my first day of the rest of my life. I need some serious good vibes sent my way, as I’m terrified, wish me luck I’m gonna need it

    • Roxanne007 5 years ago

      Shan your story is exactly mine. I too woke up Friday 22 having drank too much again the night before. Walked my dog once again with that awful hang over head got back and googled – found this great site. Its terrifying but I’m feeling so positive. Reading the blogs, reading materials ferociously and pasting into the memo section of my phone “Sober Bus or Booze Bus” I’ve found particularly helpful. I want to be on the Sober Bus. All my good vibes to you.

  2. flappergirl 5 years ago

    Congrats to you and your new sobriety. I just found this website today, and am wanting to get sober too. Your comments are appreciated.

  3. Lua 5 years ago

    Thank you so much @Mrs-D and @hetiheti …. very inspirational words. Makes me feel like there is nothing for this except to do it!

  4. Choosewisely 5 years ago

    I love that this comment comes from focusing on gaining something positive. It really is a new life with sober goggles on…


  5. hetiheti 5 years ago

    Thank you mrs.D – I was genuinely mistaken at the time thinking I was only 2 days away from that milestone but never mind – am now truly 8 days off my 700th day but better still next month hitting the two year milestone – wow I really will be chuffed then as I am each and every day. I do not take my sobriety for granted and give thanks for it each night as I go to sleep.
    it is thanks to Mrs.D and this site that I have been able to do it – we truly are an amazing bunch – the support we give each other here is unbelievable.
    but my biggest pride is that I was a role model for my daughter who joined me on this journey a month later and then her husband followed suit some months later – knowing that I made that difference makes me very happy.
    Thank you Mrs. D – I will always be grateful – I started much later than many – in my late 40s but during that time I so lost myself and didn’t know it – our culture is so booze ridden it all seems normal – and for some it is but not for us lot – somehow we lost that off switch and I know mine cannot be reversed so I remain vigilant and grateful and keep my positivity hat pull on tightly at all times.
    and hope we can all relish having found ourselves again. xx

  6. Awip 5 years ago

    Thanks for the posts, I drank from 17 to 38 and maybe in some way my emotional development suffered as I never really dealt with my emotions. I’m discovering myself again and some times it’s hard and I don’t like the way I act. But I’m now in a position to change things and every now and again I get a ray of sunshine and I feel blessed.

  7. Jane Muralez 5 years ago

    Thank-you Mrs. D for your kind, wise words + thanks @hetiheti + congrats on 700 days! There really are hidden gems in sobriety, and different weeks and months reveal different things. It’s fascinating to me doing this sobriety research. For example, I used to think I was a volatile person who cried a lot. I’m not. I’m pretty balanced. Another lovely thing is that you get your head space back. Dramas that would’ve lasted for weeks in my mind don’t get a tenth of the time now. Best to all, we can do this. xx

  8. morgan 5 years ago

    Love this, and particularly the key theme/profundity that “we didn’t even know we were missing til we gave up”. Beautifully blended ideas – thanks so much you two XXX

  9. Lizzy 5 years ago

    Great post @Mrs-D thank you, and thanks and congratulations @hetiheti. The first thing that came to my mind is JOY. I’ve realised I have little idea how to really live a joyful life, to just enjoy myself, to find happiness in the small day to day stuff, to have fun. I thought I was doing all those things when I drank, but of course it was that false perception alcohol gives you. I relied on alcohol to create the illusion of enjoyment. I’m now starting to learn how to find joy without alcohol, it’s a work in progress, but at least I’m aware now and doing something about it.

Leave a reply

Your email address will not be published.

Licensed by NZ Drug Foundation under Creative Commons 4.0 2021. Built by Bamboo Creative and powered by Flywheel.

Forgot your details?

Create Account