on the mend.

After many starts and stops, since last fall, including two 3-week periods, I have finally managed to make it to well over a month alcohol-free. Today marks 41 days.

This is significant to me because it takes 40 days to change consciousness and create new habits, according to yogic philosophy and other schools of thought.

My relapse lasted a very very long time. I have been trying to get sober again for almost 6 months. My recommendation for others who think they may want to check out drinking again, is not to do it. Of course, we all have to experience things for ourselves and some of us need to learn the hard way. But, if you can take my word for it, please do yourself a favour and DO NOT DRINK.

I haven’t written for a long time, I think I’ve been waiting to see if I can get a good chunk of sober time in. I went to Mexico for two weeks early February and I really thought I had set myself up to have a good sober vacation. I visualized myself on this vacation, being well-rested, going to bed early and waking early, taking long solitary walks on the beach, reading a ton, doing some art, and writing.

What I didn’t imagine was all the happy hours, cheap drinks, and booze infused touristy places. My husband drank every day (not to excess but a few beers every night). I cracked sometime in the middle of the trip when I got a strong whiff of tequila (tequila was my go-to drink for a few years). I drank some tequila, then some wine.

And I was devastated the next day. You know how it goes, it’s like a seal that is broken and hard to secure again. However, I only drank a few more more times. I had one hangover, and that was enough. I couldn’t stand it. I absolutely hate being hungover. It just feels like such a waste of life to me. So, I climbed back up on that wagon and kept on.

This time feels a bit different than last time I got sober- in some ways easier because I have been here before, but in some ways harder because some of the romance of early sobriety is gone. All of those “firsts” are challenging but they are also so rewarding and exciting. I haven’t experienced the pink cloud this time around (yet?). And I feel tired all the time.

Still wouldn’t trade it! I am growing calmer. I’ve had an extraordinary amount of anxiety over the last 9 months or so. Since we moved homes. Then I changed positions at work and I hated it. So I started drinking again, which I’m sure was to quell the anxiety but, of course, it only made it worse. Then my friend and godson moved, which turned my world upside down.

To top it all off, I broke my arm at the beginning of this year. I wasn’t drinking when I did it but it was enough to break the camel’s back, as they say.

Since then, things have been getting better. The neighbour which was making my home feel unsafe moved away! I changed positions (again) to a much more calm and civilized  department. My cast is off and arm is healing. I’m getting used to my friend being away. I have a good chunk of sobriety now. I am on the mend!

Bit by bit it’s all happening. I have started to move my body again, spending a little time at the gym and doing some yin yoga. I am looking forward to green smoothies and eating healthy. I’ve started meditating a few minutes at a time again. Spring is here and it’s time to feed my soul by spending time outside in the woods and by the sea.

Being sober is everything.

 

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32 thoughts on “on the mend.

  1. Congratulations on your 41 days. I really think that if you can make it to 30 days sober you can actually stay sober for the rest of your life as the first month is so hard. It’s difficult that your husband is drinking around you – do you think you could ask him to stop for a limited period of time while you strengthen your sobriety? I was 11 years clean and sober at the beginning of this year but I still don’t have any alcohol in my house or anyone drinking in my house. I can be around people drinking now but sometimes I get triggered and have to leave. If your husband could help you it might be so much easier for you as it sounds like you have the willingness to stay sober.

    • Hello! Thanks for stopping by and commenting. I agree that making it past 30 days is really hard- I have often had a difficult time making it past 3 weeks. Luckily last year I had 11 months sober but I blew it. Always have to stay vigilant!
      I’m lucky that beer is not a trigger for me in the least, so that is what my husband drinks around me. It doesn’t bother me. He keeps the wine and hard stuff out of the house. Last year I did get to the point where I was fine with wine and other stuff around. We’ll see this time. My husband does help me in many ways- he is my number 1 support actually. He is the first person I turn to when I have a craving and he talks me out of it 🙂

  2. I am so glad you are back.
    Thank you for sharing your experience. It helps me. A lot.

    I teach a lot if yin. It is meditation itself. I love it.

    Stay close. You have lots of love here.

  3. Hello Clearlee! Bravo on your 41 days and SO nice to see you back here. Your post’s a timely read – those ‘why don’t you check out drinking again’ voices have been quite loud recently in The Sober Garden! I’m going to take your advice and recall my own experience, and tell those voices to shove it. x

  4. “Being sober is everything”
    yes, yes it is.

    keep writing and being present.
    and congrats on 41 days.
    You know, I don;t like pink clouds, they really mean nothing. It’s nice when you first get sober, comforting, but life just keeps happening and it always ends, so….you’re in life, one that will be better without the booze, right?
    xo

  5. .I’m glad you’re back in the saddle! I sometimes think I should be able to drink, I’m too scared. I know I want more. I don’t want to loose what I’ve found. thanks for telling your story and reminding me. hug

  6. So glad to see you back and on the mend. I too did not do well last year and found I was drinking more than before I had quit the first time. I am also around 47 days. Welcome back my friend {hugs}

  7. You voice is so familiar. It reminds me of myself: how I feel when I don’t drink. How I feel when I do. And why I go back to drinking. Mexico would be my downfall from day one. The drinking culture is huge there. Especially in touristy places. 41 days is amazing. I thought it takes 21 days to change our habits. Now I know. It is 40 days. I had 21 AF days before. Nothing changed. I had 30 days and still fell off the wagon. Now I have a new goal. 🙂

  8. Hi. I just found your story. You are a true inspiration to me. I have tried for years to stop drinking. Lots of day ones, and a few months here and there. I really thought I was crazy because I could not stay stopped. Reading this made me realize how happy I am that I never gave up trying. I will really look forward to reading about your journey. Congratulations!

  9. Congratulations on Day 41! Although I have been sober almost 5 years, I still need to read posts like this one about how hard it is to get back and the anguish of letting sobriety go in the first place. I’ve had so many friends that had years long stretches of sobriety only to let it go and wish they could get it back, and they never did.

    Let’s keep reminding ourselves of how hard we worked for it and how damn precious it is. I’m glad I found your blog.

  10. Wtg! So happy for you!

    Have linked to your blog from mine so I can continue to check up you (would appreciate the check on me too – recovering addict myself here, need all the help possible :))

  11. I have read your blog before and I really enjoy your posts. I can relate to the temptation of being around people who drink and being in situations where drinking just looks like so much fun. The problem for me now is that the cycle of quitting is getting me nowhere. You sound really strong and I appreciate your honesty. Thanks!

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