Positive Energy

Positive Energy

Our friends and family members have expressed to us that our energy and vibe is so much more positive now that we’re sober. We didn’t realize that the negative ways that we were feeling during active drinking was affecting anyone else. I told myself that I was only hurting myself in my drinking days. I have come to realize that anyone who comes into contact with me is going to experience some sort of ripple effect by the way that I treat them. When I was drunk I didn’t care about anyone else. When I was hungover I was short-tempered, easily irritated, and physically ill.

Now I try to treat others as I would want someone to treat my son. I am more understanding, patient, and forgiving. I smile and laugh easily. Positive attracts positive. My sis and I try to pay it forward and offer a bit of experience and reality to our sober community. We also pay attention to and spend time with others who are traveling this recovery road with us.

Keep it simple, ya’ll.

On Being Sober Mamas

On Being Sober Mamas

We sober sisters are also mamas. We have 3 teens between us, aged 14, 15 and 16. Our kids have seen us drunk. They have seen us sloppy. We wish we could erase those memories they have. We wish we had been more present for them. Our babies are the most important people in our lives and we love them so much. Still. That didn’t stop us from drinking too much around them.

The truth is, we lost control over our drinking years ago. We’d make promises to cut down, to moderate it, to drink when they weren’t around.

Then we’d drink anyway. We’d drink a lot. It’s not easy, being single working moms. There aren’t enough hours in the day. There were days we felt like we were failing at life. So we’d drink to try to calm down the anxiety and to just take a break. That’s what we told ourselves anyway. We deserved it. We needed it.

We got by, but it got harder. It was awful to work while hungover. Parenting while feeling sick was miserable. The cycle just kept on going, as we kept disappointing our kids and ourselves. The worse it got, the more the shame built up. So we’d drink to block that out too.

All of our kids showed us they were really worried about us.. We finally just couldn’t hurt our kids or ourselves for one more minute. So we stopped trying to manage drinking and decided to do whatever it took to stop drinking and STAY stopped.

We can’t erase the past. We can’t get those years back. What we can do is show our kids that they can trust us and count on us. We can be honest with them. We can also show them how we manage life without alcohol (or drugs).

We hope they never see us take another drink.

Quitting drinking didn’t take our problems away, but throwing alcohol on our problems was like tossing jet fuel on a fire. It never, never made things better.

We both found sober support groups. We work on our recovery every single day. We freed up lots of time by not having to sleep off hangovers. We sleep better, we eat better, we exercise, we show up for other people.

Our kids are proud of us. Alcoholism goes back generations in our family. We’re breaking the cycle and we will never take it for granted.

Shine On

Shine On

We used to seem to attract negativity in our lives. Situations were challenging. People were negative. We had too much to do and too little time. Now we know that we attract the energy we give out. When we FINALLY put down the drink we could work on ourselves. We weren’t sick and tired all the time.

Now it seems like we can handle situations so much easier…with grace. Like ladies. We aren’t surrounding ourselves with selfish, self-seeking people. We choose to embrace those who have positive attitudes and energy. When life throws us a bit of a twist we take it in stride. No matter how challenging something seems to be, we know that adding alcohol to the mix will only add fuel to the negativity fire. We rise and shine every day. Keep it simple, sisters.

Do it Today

Do it Today

I drank for many years after knowing I shouldn’t. Alcohol slowly started strangling everything important to me, like a creeping, sinister vine. I let it take my self esteem, my work ethic, my sense of responsibility, my hobbies, my peace and my joy. For a few years, I could somewhat control my alcohol use. I’d go weeks without drinking. But once I took the first sip, I couldn’t control how much I drank.

The crazy part? The days I woke up without a hangover were the best days. I started the day with a little energy, not feeling so sick, and proud of myself for not drinking. I’d be productive and active. But the obsession to drink would come back and eventually win out. And I’d be thrown back into chaos and shame.

My sister and I talked today about what it was like when we were in that purgatory state with alcohol-hating it and being disgusted and ashamed…. and then still drinking. The absolute worst. I quipped, “It’s like picking at a scab.” (These things just roll off my tongue. It’s a blessing and a curse.)

I used my body like a science experiment for decades. Decades. And my behavior like a sociological study. My insane thinking was for the neurologists and psychiatrists to dissect. It’s like I was detached from myself, like I was just watching someone else go through life. Like I wasn’t real.

And I kind of wasn’t real. I was a walking, talking, smiling mannequin, somehow miraculously human-like, but something’s just not quite right.

I have known all of this for years and been so scared of what it meant that I drank more to try to protect myself. I tried detaching enough, medicating enough, to not fall apart.

Then the drinking caused most of the crises but the only coping skill I had left was drinking. This could have gone on forever until one day I made a decision, one I shared with loved ones, that there could be no more empty promises of “tomorrow.”

If I were reading this while still drinking, I would indignantly think, “This is bullocks. This is the WORST time to quit drinking because [every excuse in the book].”

It is ALWAYS the worst time to quit drinking for people with drinking problems. Which, when you think about it, makes you realize it’s the best time of all. Or even the only time.

If you want to stop drinking, do it today. If you’re a heavy daily drinker, get to a medially supervised hospital detox. If you’re a problem drinker who doesn’t get significant withdrawal symptoms, dump it down the drain (if there’s any left). And go get the rest of the hidden stash too. And even the emergency stash. This is the hard part: after all that, DO NOT BUY MORE. And stay away from it until you feel stronger. That’s how I had to do it, anyway.

We Need To Talk

We Need To Talk

I never like hearing those four words. They make me nervous. I heard those words a lot while I was actively drinking. I didn’t receive what people tried to say because I didn’t want to hear it. I didn’t want to know what I did last night. I always knew it was bad. I pretended that if I didn’t know what happened, it didn’t really happen. The anxiety that comes with living this life is unmanageable.
Once I could finally surrender and KNOW that I can’t ever have even one drink I rarely hear those four words. I say them sometimes to my teenager but that’s about it. Life isn’t perfect but tossing alcohol on a fire just makes it get bigger, right?
keep it simple, sisters.

Always Have an Exit Plan

Always Have an Exit Plan

Tonight I could be celebrating an old bestie’s milestone birthday at the cutest getaway cabin, with women I’ve know going on 17 years. But instead, I’m staying home. I’ll go to a recovery meeting, do regular mundane mom kind of stuff, baby my dog who has a little injury. I’ll work, getting my business ready to reopen in a pandemic. I have a mammogram.

I could have ditched it all for a reunion. For sure. But I’ve been trained in sobriety to check my motives before making any decision. This celebration was going to be just girls, in a cute cabin far from home, getting shitfaced. That’s just the kind of situation my alcoholic brain craves. I love these girls, but watching people get loaded isn’t fun. Plus the addict in me could easily cave-who would know? Just this once. No big deal. And there goes years of sobriety, circling the drain. “Staying stopped” is WAY easier than starting over.

I ALWAYS need an exit plan. Sure I’ll go out to a birthday dinner, have a piece of cake, support and love my friends. And then I’ll go on home, sobriety and dignity intact. Any time I go where there’s alcohol, I think it through, and decide if there’s a valid reason to go. And I plan my exit IN ADVANCE. The FOMO will pass. And I’ll be here, strong and serene.