It’s been two years today.
Two years of waking up without crippling anxiety.
Two years of my mind clearing.
Two years of self reflection.
Two years of reconnecting with my innermost dreams and desires.
I still obsess sometimes over wanting a drink.
I still am triggered at the most random moments.
I still get those self deprecating thoughts and feelings that I wish I could escape from.
I will always be a work in progress, I suppose. ...but that’s what Recovery is all about, ya?
Restoring yourself. Returning to a better state or condition.
One year ago, I wrote a reflection piece broken down by the month. In that first year, I chronicled each milestone and challenge. I remember being told that in your first year of sobriety not to make any major decisions. So I just lived and reconnected with my soul and found what worked for me. Like yoga and doTERRA’s oils and journaling and music.
When I found out I was pregnant at the end of January, I was excited, scared, worried, eager, and all the other natural emotions one feels when they find out they are expecting. I have had a rough go with pregnancy. Losing Lennox, 2 major miscarriages after Dahlia and then Placenta Percreta with Malone causing me to have to have him 2 months early and to be hospitalized for 9 weeks as well as losing the ability to ever have any more children. I couldn’t imagine going through that in my first year of sobriety.
I walked away from all of that wondering what purpose that served and what lesson the Universe and God were trying to teach me. It gave me a lot of time to think about friendships and parenting and work and life and recovery and goals and dreams.
Which also got me thinking about genealogy...
Growing up I was always afraid of alcohol and drugs. Seeing it within my own family structure and how it interweaved and connected. I saw what it did to those I love and didn’t want to be like that, but I didn’t really understand it. We never really talked about it. And I thought that it wouldn’t happen to me. I was different.
But dependency/addition doesn’t show bias and it can literally happen to anyone...especially if you’re predisposed.
So naturally one of my biggest fears is passing this on. This gene. My addiction. To my children. And that’s why I openly talk about it with my daughter and will when my son is older. That’s how we can stop this epidemic. Teach your lineage to your children if there is any sort of addiction or dependency in your family. Learn about coping mechanisms. TALK ABOUT IT. Communicate. WE have the ability to break this cycle. No shame.
Drinking, for me, was a slow progression to dependence. It was something I didn’t have to do everyday, but something I obsessed about. Something that I couldn’t stop once I started.
Something that I thought made me funnier and more social.
Something that everyone else did, too.
Something that was so normalized that it was used as a coping mechanism to life’s stressors.
Something that inhibited me from reaching my fullest potential.
I look back at all of it and wonder, “Would I want it any other way?” If I go back in time, would I want to change anything about my life.
And the answer is quite simply, “No.” I mean, sure there were some really sucky times and some memories I wish I could erase, but then I wouldn’t be sitting here two years sober sharing this with you.
So here I am, as if I’m on the outside of a bubble, watching it happen to so many. Wondering what can I do? How can I help? What is the best way to serve others without being righteous? Should I share my thoughts? Am I out of line to say this? How can I be clear and intention based while striving for common neutrality?
And I’m brought back to the most impactful advice I heard my first week of Sobriety:
“Just live your life and be a good example.”
People are going to think what they will about you, but as long as YOU like YOU...that’s all that really matters. Truth be told I don’t like me some days. I can be a real piece of work, but I CAN say two years later that I LOVE ME all days. Unconditionally.
And that’s recovery. I welcome it with open arms, human flaws and all.
...and did I mention how awesome it is to be 2 years hangover free!?!