A New Story

I am realizing that continued sobriety is all about changing the story of my life. When I first quit I couldn’t see this story very clearly, just hoped and prayed that there was SOMETHING, ANYTHING, better than what I was doing. When I think of those times, those desperate days, months and years leading up to my quit, I still feel a familiar tightening in my gut. A familiar fear and anxiety that I never want to experience again. When I quit I was afraid that I was going to die from drinking, and none of my dreams would ever come true, and I would live out my days in fear that my life had become something ugly and that it was going to end that way, too. 

Quitting was a huge leap of faith, but there was some sort of inner knowledge, an intuition, telling me that there was more for me if I stopped sabotaging myself. Now that I am creeping slowly upon two years of continuous sobriety, I am seeing more and more of what that might be. The universe is a mysterious place, and my new story leaves plenty of room for wonderful surprises. It’s not all perfection, of course, life is hard sometimes sober or not, but I am so much more open to my truth than I once was. I am becoming more and more aligned with my values and creating a life that reflects that. It just keeps getting richer and deeper. I am excited about what is in store for me, while constantly working to be present, grateful, and authentic in the moment. Not easy, but so much easier than it was at first. 

I still struggle with negativity sometimes, it comes in waves every few days or weeks, but in my new story this negativity no longer defines me. I am not an egomaniac with an inferiority complex anymore…I think I am finally feeling something close to right-sized. I am truly comfortable being social, in the right circumstances, at least. It took over a year and a half, but the transformation happened, just like others said it would. 

I feel like my story is wide open. Instead of being a victim of the shitty circumstances of my life, I am the creator of a beautiful life. It’s all in perspective, and time, and healing the old wounds that drinking simply covered up or exacerbated for years and years. Again, it is not perfect by any means, but so much different and better than I could have imagined. 

29 thoughts on “A New Story

  1. Thanks for the much-needed inspiration. It is a leap of faith. I have no idea what I’m getting into and sometimes it doesn’t seem worth it. I can’t hear enough that it is worth it, eventually.

  2. Thanks so much for sharing. You have so much captured the essence of my identical process when I got sober. I do agree that sobriety is much different than I imagined, and so much better too!

  3. That is beautiful.
    I agree. Somewhere along the way I just “sank into” me. I became comfortable alone with myself.
    And because of that life is so much less lonely.

  4. Thanks for the reminder that at Day 150, it’s still early days for me and there’s a lot of sober evolution left. Sometimes I think: is this it? Granted, “this” is much better than before. But it’s nice to hear there’s more good stuff to come. Glad you’re getting your good stuff. πŸ™‚

  5. It is an amazing thing; to have thought for so long that life would never get better and then begin noticing small miracles unfolding. I am so happy for you! Your joy is contagious!

  6. I really enjoy your writing and ideas. I am dealing with taking that risk of sobriety after creating a life that evolved around weekend drinking since 15. It almost feels like I am starting life with only 15 years of knowledge to build on. It will take patience and faith like you said to find out. It is easy to be a drunk because society gathers together with drink, but other than AA there is not a whole lot of places to gather without drink on a Friday/Saturday night.

  7. this was just lovely to read. I am so happy for you that you are feeling right sized – I think that you can only write about it so evocatively because you are living it!

  8. Right-sized is the perfect way to describe it. This life fits just right! That doesn’t mean it’s easy- it means it works. I loved reading this post! xxxooo

  9. This is so wonderful to read. I am truly happy for you. You’re inspiring me. πŸ™‚ Thank you.

  10. I woke up one morning almost a year ago after drinking well into the wee hours of the morning and had to get up and go to my job, in finance, still buzzing. I realized at that moment that it was no longer the life I wanted to lead. As such, I made a New Year’s Resolution to live 2015 without alcohol, and it has, literally, changed my life. We are almost into 2016 and not only have I accomplished my goal thus far but I have no desire to pick up drinking again even in social situations and I could not be happier that I made the decision to finally cut it out of my life.

    Thank you for the good read and come check out hat shedding alcohol has allowed me to do physically: http://www.TravelWithMitch.com

  11. What a great post! we need to improve education in regard to responsible drinking and some of the stuff you’ve said hits the nail on the head, and we can ultimately stop alcohol-fueled violence! great work!!!

  12. Great read! Love your blog keep up the good work! would love to chat sometime I am soon to be 8 months sober and am finding my story is changing daily and weekly, I feel lost sometimes as if something is missing, but I keep going because going back is not an option.

  13. Hi Jen, I’ve today read every single post in this blog and it’s made me so excited for the future and so grateful for the opportunity to start my life over. Today is my 31st day of sobriety and I identify so, so much with pretty much everything you’ve written in your blog. Thank you for writing and sharing – you’ve given me so much to take away and so much belief, hope and strength. Your posts really have been invaluable, I can’t thank you enough. I hope you’re continuing to go from strength to strength on your journey xxx

  14. I am doing the same thing you did, scouring the internet reading sobriety stories. I am on Day 2. I still can’t bring myself to say the word alcoholic. That can’t be me, right?

    • Yeah that word has a lot of baggage, doesn’t it? It took me a long time to say it! I still don’t say it that often. Labels don’t really matter to me as long as I know in my heart I’m SO much better off sober. Good job on Day 2 and keep reading…it helps!!

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