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. 

Love Yourself. The End.

It was a feeling more than anything. A premonition… knowledge deep inside my gut that something terrible would happen if I kept drinking. This is why I stopped. I wasn’t cajoled or forced or intervened upon. I was scared. I was hurting myself and I had to do something about it. That little voice was persistent but tiny, and so easily shoved into the back of my mind, that I didn’t hear it for a really long time.

As I am sober for more and more time I can feel my intuition growing stronger. That little voice inside my gut is leading me to better places than it used to. When you are listening to your gut’s little voice- your intuition, not your junkie voice- you are following your own positive path in life. This path will not generally steer you wrong because it is based upon self-love. I really enjoyed the latest post on the ‘Sober Identity’ blog here, which talked a lot about loving yourself. Check it out, yo.

The main thing that I took from her article was that it is impossible to drink AND love yourself if you are an alcoholic. So, for me, drinking does not equal self-love. Drinking will NEVER equal self-love because drinking is actually a form of self-harm. Thinking about that caused a big aha! moment for me. I can never, ever pamper myself, or relax with, a glass of wine or a shot of whiskey again. It is NOT relaxing or pampering because it is so, so bad for me. I can go for a run or meditate or cry or take a bath, but I cannot give myself booze and pretend that I am loving myself.

My little intuitive voice has always been there trying to lead me to good places, but I wasn’t very good at listening to it for a long time. Alcohol clogged it up, numbed it out, distracted it with hangovers, and did a number of other things to obscure it that I am only beginning to awaken to. I think it will only grow louder and more clear as my brain continues to heal from the years of abuse that I put it through. I feel excited to find out where that little voice will lead me from here.