Imagine that. Maybe some of you thought I would, but I really had my doubts.
I have had a trying year, getting sober, my son moving back in with us, my husbands father being old and ornery, and my mother receiving two terminal cancer diagnosis within two months of each other.
I spent the summer either in New York helping to care for my father in law, or in Virginia caring for my mother, then helping her move.
I logged a lot of miles on the road this summer. From Tennessee to Virginia to New York, back to Virginia, back to New York, and then at the end of September back to Tennessee.
I have been to Missouri twice to visit my mother since we moved her there from Virginia.
My son has had countless interviews, and yet still no job. I have had to put on my big girl panties, and I have given him a deadline to move out. This alternates between breaking my heart, and not happening soon enough.
I have hardly seen my daughter this year, due to all of the above turmoil, which breaks my heart.
Through all of this really shitty shit, I have remained sober. Some days it was easier than others. On the bad days, I tackled it like I would a really steep hill when I am running. I just put my head down and leaned into it.
Here is a list of some of the things I have learned in the last 365 days, in no particular order.
- Getting sober during the holidays is rough, I have no idea why I decided on 11/30/2013 that it was the day, but I did, and dealt with my first set of sober holidays. It was hard, and it sucked.
- I am glad I had my first set of sober holidays last year, this year will be better, and I may even enjoy myself.
- If and when you go to AA, you have to ASK someone to be your sponsor. Apparently not a man though. Who knew??
- There should be a small manual that goes with The Big Book. It should have tips, such as, how to act at meetings, what all the acronyms stand for, what the AA terminology means, which meetings give out chips, how often they are given out, and why all the meetings you attend have a different format for readings, prayers, and protocol. It would make it easier for newbies.
- The first few days, weeks, and months of sobriety suck big time.
- I never thought it would get better. I didn’t believe anybody when they told me it would get better.
- It gets better, WAY better.
- You have to commit completely to being sober, if you don’t, you will drink again.
- There are many days when I wish I could have A glass of wine. ONE, UNO. But I know where that would go, and I have already been there.
- I still haven’t told my husband all the gory details of my drinking. It comes out a little at a time.
- I am ashamed at having let my drinking get away from me. I come from a family of alcoholics, I should have known better.
- Stepping into my first AA meeting was really fucking scary.
- I still get hives when I speak at AA. It is so hard for me to share…
- I love my sponsor, she is the best.
- I struggle with the concept of a higher power, but when I think about everything that has happened over the last year, I have to admit that SOMETHING IS AT WORK!!!
- I wish I had kept track of how many books I have read in the last year. It is often more than one a week. It is great to read and REMEMBER!!
- My bed is now my favorite place in my whole house. It no longer signifies laziness, and being hung over. I do not feel guilty sitting on it or lying on it during the day. I am only there because I WANT to be not because I HAVE to be.
- I am still afraid every day that I am going to relapse and be a worse drunk than I was.
- We all have our own way of living one day at a time.
- I love the AA meeting slogan, “Take what you want,and leave the rest.”
- I have not made it all the way through The Big Book. It is too dated, and has to many references to God.
- My relationship with my husband is 1000% better. It is amazing that he isn’t the humongous asshole that I thought he was when I was drinking.
- In fact, I was the asshole.
- I try not to spend to much time wishing I had gotten sober 10 years ago. Sometimes I go there and think of the person I might have been. Would she be a better version of me?
- I am still searching for some of the illusive feelings, such as, happy, joyous and free, acceptance, and patience.
- Progress not perfection is my mantra.
I have butterflies in my stomach about reaching this monumental goal. I hope the coming year is as full of good change as this year has been.
I am also grateful to each and every person that has visited my blog and helped in my journey to sobriety. Thank you for all the likes and comments, they have helped me immeasurably.
Everyone who blogs about their battle with this disease is helpful, and I thank all of you, I have my morning coffee with you, and I spend the last hour of my night with you. I have “taken what I wanted, and left the rest.”
If you are thinking about getting sober, or new at this sober thing,I have a few people who were instrumental in helping me get where I am today, Paul at Message in a Bottle, Christy at Running on Sober and my mentor, savior, confidant, counselor, and teacher Maggie at Sober Courage. Thank you all.
Happy One Year to Me!!!