Recovery, and Life, and Hello

Recovery is a thing that happens all the time these days. It is seamless, integrated, a part of me that exists along with breathing and going pee. Well, maybe not exactly, but I feel super grateful that I no longer have to dwell on it quite as much as I used to. It took a lot of brain space and time. It was totally worth all of the brain space and time to start living a sober existence, but it has changed. Amazingly, though, I don’t feel in danger of relapsing because I am not focusing the same kind of attention on it. I feel super alive for the first time in many years, and I am grabbing onto that feeling with both hands.

Let me tell you a little about what is working for me these days, because recovery has a tendency to change over time, just like life. It looks different for different people, and it even looks different for different people on different days. Lately for me it has looked like reading lots of books that inspire me to be the best person that I can be. Thinking about big picture things on a regular basis. Being open with people about who I am, including the part of me that is an alcoholic. Starting a new business venture that scares the shit out of me but also makes me feel useful and creative. Reading one good book per week. Prayer. Gratitude. Family and friends.

Oh, and remembering this thought EVERY SINGLE DAY- I can not have this life, this amazing life, if I start drinking again. Drinking is simply not an option for me. I still think that surrendering to that knowledge is the single most important thing you can do to get yourself sober. As long as I remember that every day, I don’t feel in danger of drinking.

Blogging hasn’t really been my thing lately, and that’s okay with me. Being here all the time helped me so much for those first few months. Hell, for the first whole year even. I still stop by every day and read what all of you have to say, but I don’t comment as much as I used to. I feel like I have limited resources to get me through every day, and sometimes I would rather focus my attention elsewhere. So, it is what it is for now. Maybe one day I will feel like writing more here again, but for now I am okay with stopping by occasionally for an update, and reading your thoughts, struggles and feelings. It helps.

The work of recovery doesn’t ever stop, I am finding. I am constantly learning more about myself. Turns out I am a ‘highly sensitive person’. Have you heard of this label? It seems like a bit of pop psychology, but I secretly love pop psychology and self-help type stuff, and the description fits me perfectly. I recently read The Highly Sensitive Person by Elaine Aron and it helped me understand the strengths and weaknesses that come along with being this way. I think I was using alcohol as a type of medication for so many different purposes. It is interesting to become more ‘me’ as sober time increases. It’s not all good, but it’s definitely a more authentic way to live.

You all take care of yourselves out there and remember that you are never, ever alone. I’m sending out lots of good vibes to the universe for every single one of you.

 

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16 thoughts on “Recovery, and Life, and Hello

  1. So amazing to hear that you’re doing well, and that you’re in a place where you feel at peace enough with your recovery that you don’t need to grasp on as tightly to the helping hands that were there in the beginning. As for me, I’m here at Day 4, and I found your blog to be beautiful and encouraging. I’m glad to hear that support from the blogosphere helped you, and I’m crossing my fingers that it can help me on my journey, too. Take care and be well!

    • Congrats on 4 days and thank you for your nice comment. Yes, the sober blogosphere is super helpful whenever you need it….luckily there is always help available. Peace and light and hugs.

  2. So great to hear how far you have come, Jen. I have read all your posts and feel really connected because so much of what you have said – I have felt (particularly Four Seasons of Sober) – but have not been able to describe or articulate. I am over a year Sober and loving it and ready for the next phase – it is scary but exciting! Reading your blog has helped me to crystallise where I need to go from here! So thanks!
    Loads of good wishes for your next step in your journey – you are a strong woman and very inspiring – I’m gonna get me some of that!

  3. “Oh, and remembering this thought EVERY SINGLE DAY- I can not have this life, this amazing life, if I start drinking again. Drinking is simply not an option for me. I still think that surrendering to that knowledge is the single most important thing you can do to get yourself sober. As long as I remember that every day, I don’t feel in danger of drinking”

    That is the ticket, isn’t it?! I’ve been thinking about what got me to this point (sober 47 days today) and I completely agree that it was finally surrendering to the fact that my life will be shit if I continue to drink, and I will know freedom and happiness if I quit. It’s that simple but still not easy to accept the truth. Congratulations on all your sober time- it sounds like things are going really well for you and it inspires me to keep going!

    lee

    • It’s definitely not easy to accept, but it makes the decision process easier. There’s no going back so you have to keep going forward. Sounds like you are doing great…congrats on 47 days! Thanks for your comment. 🙂

  4. Blogging has not been my thing lately either. I feel the same about so many things you said. My life would suck if I started drinking again too. Great that you checked in. Perfect post. Good luck with your business venture.
    Sharon

  5. It sounds like recovery has just become a part of your life. Continuing to develop your self awareness skills is a big part of that. I think a good percentage of alcoholics are highly sensitive. I know I fit into that category. I manage a lot of that by turning inside, meditating, breathing, and avoiding situations that overwhelm me. I will never again grocery shop on Sunday afternoon.

    • I would like to work more on meditation- it has been a long-running goal of mine that I keep putting off. It’s weird…I found that I do many of the coping behaviors that Elaine Aron recommended in her book for HSPs already. I think we learn what we need to do, but it’s really wonderful to let go of the shame and guilt for being different than many others. Thanks for your comment and have a good day! xo

      p.s. Shopping on weekends is a pure kind of torture. I totally agree.

  6. lovely to hear from you Jen and to hear what stage you are at. I love how you put this:

    ‘I feel like I have limited resources to get me through every day, and sometimes I would rather focus my attention elsewhere.’ so true. not there myself yet but starting to feel glimpses of that, too.

    delighted to hear that you are feeling so grounded in your sobriety. it’s pretty damn wonderful, isn’t it? xx

  7. This is so uplifting. It’s a good reminder for me that if I keep my focus in the right place good things are to come. Feeling grounded is such a gift. One I undervalued most of my life.
    Lots of love, Lisa

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