Someone left a lovely comment on one of my posts a while back. It said something along the lines of "you seem so together"
And I am beginning to feel 'together'.
But it wasn't like that for a long time.
A few years after emigrating to Canada, my relationship ended, after fifteen years. I ended it. It was the right decision. But my drinking problem (that I kept firmly under control, apart from a few lapses), spiraled.
I made bad decision after bad decision, including a particularly toxic rebound relationship. And I doused everything in copious amounts of wine.
Very soon, my already floundering career in Real Estate rolled to halt (thanks in part to the recession, and to my lack of interest and permanent hangover), so the small amount of cash that I had received from the relationship break up, was quickly gone.
I ended up working in a Beer and Wine Store (cruel irony), and it was easy to compare my "enthusiastic wine appreciation" against the "real alcoholics' that frequented the store.
In private, I vowed again and again that I wouldn't drink so much. And every time, I failed to make good on the promises I had made to myself.
Eventually, I convinced myself that I was drinking "due to the stress" and once I had got my life under control, the drinking would stop...all by itself...
The happiest intervention by the Universe (or God), who clearly decided I needed a break, was to put my now husband firmly in my path.
Thank God I wasn't too drunk to notice!
My drinking continued, but I justified it to myself by '..it's happy drinking!"
Physically, I was beginning to notice that I was forgetting things. Like whole conversations. Or getting to bed. And I was worried about weird pains in my arms. Some nights I would wake up, dehydrated, and worry about having a stroke, or a heart attack.
So I tried to stop.
I tried to only drink on weekends.
I switched to beer
I switched from beer to white wine.
I challenged myself to not drink for two weeks.
I tried to stop FOR GOOD, again and again and again.
I put crosses on the calendar for all the days I didn't drink, hoping that there would be more crosses than not, at the end of every month. There never were.
I read sober literature (as I was drinking wine)
I googled 'Am I an Alcoholic" and lied my way through countless questionnaires.
And then finally, I stopped.
No DUIs, no interventions from my very patient husband, no medical emergencies. I can't even tell you what I was thinking.
On Day Three I started this Blog. I had no idea if I would make it to Day 4 or Day 10....or Day 100.
So why share this now?
Because I read so many blogs where people are reverting back to Day 1 and feel so shitty about it. I read the desperation, the panic and think to myself......I remember that...
If you read my blog and think "wow, she seems so together", I thank you. I really take that as a compliment.
But there is only one difference between you and me.......I wasn't brave enough to blog about all the times when I smacked up against the wall of alcohol. I wasn't brave enough to share the times I had to pick myself up , feeling shitty and desperate that I wouldn't make it. But you ARE brave enough to share that. Thank you.
You are all an inspiration to me. And I know that you are all going to make it.