Monday, 22 August 2016

9 months

Today I am 9 months sober! I still can't believe it sometimes. Who knew I could do it?!

My life has improved so much in these last 9 months. From the outside, everything looks exactly the same. The biggest improvement is internal. It's how I feel inside. Everything is so much better! I'm finally believing that all the wonderful things that long term sober people describe happening, is finally coming true for me.

My son had his First Holy Communion last Saturday evening. The church service was lovely and I was so proud of my little guy. He carried the candle up the aisle and the look of concentration on his face was priceless. He looked like a little angel.

We couldn't afford to have all the family at a restaurant, so decided to have them back at our place. We live in a 2 bedroom town house so we don't have a lot of room, but we've had the little guys birthdays here several times and it's been okay, so we knew we could do it.

Of course though, it involved a lot of stress!! The big guy doesn't handle stress very well so I was dreading it! But it all worked out in the end. Mum and I made a couple of salads, a few desserts and I made the Communion cake. I have never made a fancy occasion cake like this before so I was scared it would be a disaster, but it worked! I was so proud of myself. I really think I couldn't have pulled everything off if I was still drinking. Or maybe I could have, but I would have been a hundred times more stressed!!

It was a really lovely evening and everyone had a great time. There were 22 of us in our little house and it worked out fine. We could have used some more chairs but we all managed. And all our mad tidying paid off as our place looked great (although there is still papers and a heap of 'stuff' crammed in cupboards that I will have to go through, but oh well!)

I'm going to a meeting tonight to get my 9 month chip. I would really love to stay in as it's a feral day, but I will make an effort and go. I am always glad when I am there.

I just want to say to anyone who is hovering around the 100 day mark and are toying with whether to drink again or not, I highly recommend not to! Everything gets so much better once if you just keep going. Life really does get better. I think by finally surrendering to a life of not drinking, I am finally learning true happiness. I still have a way to go, but life is already so much better.

A x

Tuesday, 16 August 2016


I haven't posted for a while. I'm getting slack! But I wanted to share something that happened yesterday.

I asked my little guy, who is 9 and 3/4, if he remembered how I used to drink wine. He said no. So I prompted him a little, saying yes you do, you know that yellow drink I used to drink in the evening? In the special wine glass? But no, he said he doesn't remember. Then I asked him if I've changed in the last few months, and he said yes. He said I don't get as cross, that I laugh at his silly voices instead of getting annoyed. I asked him if he notices that I'm happier these days, and he said he does.

This fills me with so much joy. That my son notices that I am a happier, more centered person.

I know a lot of this has to do with me taking the anti-anxiety meds. They have changed my life for the better which is such a relief. I was so fearful about taking them, but I needn't have worried. Who knew this is how people feel all the time?!

I feel so much happier. Things still aren't perfect. There are still issues with my husband. I would still love to leave my job and go somewhere else. I would still love to lose 15kg. I still have hip pain and my feet are awful. I still get impatient with my mum sometimes. But overall, I am so much happier and I take things in my stride.  I am trying to become a better person and learning to like myself, and I'm getting there, a little bit at a time. I have hope that the wonderful life that people in long term sobriety talk about is a possibility for me. That the magic will happen for me too.

Last Friday night we went out for dinner with my oldest friend and her husband. We don't see them very often, but when we do we just pick up where we left off and we can chat for hours. In the past, this would involve lots of wine. When we caught up with them before Christmas I had not long stopped drinking. I told her I was having a break and she didn't question it. She knew my father when we were kids and knows my family history, so she understood why I was questioning my drinking. This time, she didn't say anything at all. She had several wines with dinner and then a bottle back at our place. She was a little glassy eyed by the end but she seemed ok. I'm just glad I don't do that anymore. The following day, we were texting each other when she said she noticed that I wasn't drinking and if I had given it up completely. And I have to be honest, I hesitated when answering. I contemplated saying yes, but adding 'for now'. I was a little nervous saying 'yes for good' because that would make it official somehow. But then I thought, why am I hesitating? I HAVE given up completely. So I typed back yes and that I feel so much better for it. She was so positive about it. She even said she had thought about it but as she doesn't drink during the week so decided against it. It felt being honest about it.

We celebrated my older brother's 50th birthday on Sunday. It was a great day. We had lunch at a restaurant then spent a couple of hours at a nearby beach. It was a beautiful sunny, winters day and the kids rolled their pants up and had a ball in the shallows. My heart was filled with so much love for my family. I was just so happy, and I know a lot of that has to do with being sober. Had I still been drinking, I would have had several wines with lunch, then not had as much fun at the beach because I'd be wanting to get home and drink more. Being sober is so much better.

I feel so much more positivity in my life. Even work has been better lately. And it's all to do with my attitude. I think because I am feeling happier, it shines through in everything I do. I would still love to leave and work somewhere else, but in the meantime, it is a bit more bearable.

So my friends, life continues to get better. It takes time, but it is happening. Today I am 268 days sober. And I am just so grateful.

A x

Wednesday, 3 August 2016

Out of my comfort zone

I went to a 50th birthday party last Saturday night. It was the first proper, grown up party I've been to since I got sober. I went there knowing I wouldn't drink. Thinking 'I've got this'. And I did. But it was a challenge.

We got there at 8pm and as soon as we walked in the door we were faced with cocktails! I just said no thanks and had a diet coke. There were a few people there already. Thankfully, there was a couple we knew who we hadn't see for a few years so we chatted to them for a while. I told them I don't drink anymore and they just accepted it, no questions asked, so that was a relief! I had my stash of diet coke caffeine free cans so I was all set.

Mr A was great. He kept my glass full and stayed with me. But he was drinking and as the night wore on, he started to mingle, which was fine. I didn't expect to stay glued to my side ALL night. I met a lovely lady who didn't know that many people either, so we chatted for a while. Then it was time for the speeches and we got separated, so I stood next to Mr A. I was feeling good and thinking this wasn't that hard after all! I can do this.

After the speeches, Mr A got into a discussion with a guy about football. By now he was getting quite tipsy! I was standing next to him awkwardly and felt a bit lost. I desperately looked around for someone to talk to but everyone was chatting to someone else. I didn't feel confident enough to walk up to them and join in the conversation, so I just stood there, feeling more uncomfortable by the minute.

Then a couple of girls I had been talking to earlier tried to drag me onto the dance floor. And I mean they actually grabbed my arm and physically tried to drag me onto the dance floor! But I resisted. I just couldn't do it. Something in me froze and I just couldn't dance.

I love dancing. I used to dance whenever I went out on the town. But that was a long time ago. And it was when I was drinking and had a lot of Dutch courage flowing through my veins. I felt sad the other night. I stood there in a panic, not knowing what to do with myself. I wanted to let my guard down and get out there on the dance floor and just have fun, but I couldn't do it. Maybe if I'd known the people better I could have done it. I don't know. I just know that by now I was feeling really anxious and I just had to get out of there. So I told Mr A that I wanted to leave and he understood. So I said a few goodbyes and he walked me out to the car. It was 11.35pm.

So I drove home, put on my pyjamas, and curled up on the couch with the computer and read my favourite blogs.

I felt disappointed that I didn't last longer at the party. But I'm glad I went and experienced it sober. I know I panicked but before that happened, I was having a good time. I think if I'd known more people it would have been better, maybe I might have even danced. Guess I'll never know!

Mr A got home at 3am and felt pretty miserable on Sunday. All I felt was relief that it wasn't me feeling like that!

So, the next time we go to a big fancy party, I am going to try and relax a bit more. Pretend no one is watching and have a dance. I have to remind myself that it's still early days. 8 months might feel like a long time, but in the big scheme of things, it's not long at all. So I'm not going to be too hard on myself.

A x