Riding out the storm and kicking ass!

Life has been stormy over the last few weeks but I’ve got 89 days of sobriety and thankful for everything that comes and goes in my life.

My grandma passed away a week ago and my heart hasn’t hurt this bad in a long time. Feeling thankful for all the time I’ve spent with her over these past few months. I miss the simple things like being able to pick up the phone to just tell her I was thinking of her.

Another huge event is we are moving 200 miles away from family and friends. My hubby had accepted a job offer with his work to relocate. We are all very excited for this new adventure but shit gets real after seeing the last moving truck take the rest of our stuff away yesterday. So many memories in our home over the last 15 years. We brought home 3 baby girls and watched them grow but it’s time we have new adventures and memories in our new home in SLO Cal. Crazy thing is I went to school at Cal Poly and when I left there at 22 I had no idea I’d be moving back 20 years later with a family.

I’m feeling good and have worked on digging deep again the past 3 months in my outpatient treatment program. I think blogging will be huge in this transition of life so I hope I don’t drive anyone crazy! Looking forward to updating you all on our new adventure!

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Booze 1, Jen 0

  Today I wake up with 19 days of sobriety. Not very exciting when you’ve woken up to 19 days a handful of times. It’s at least a start and I’m doing something about it. I’m in an outpatient treatment program again because there was a storm inside of me and it was killing all the flowers.

I struggle with extended family relationships and am most happy when I don’t have to deal with outside bullshit. I can’t keep holding grudges against family members that I think should act or behave different. I struggle with my only sibling and the lack of a relationship that we have. I blame that on the way we were raised. Excuses were always made for him because being brought up in a divorced house, a boy needs his dad, but a daughter doesn’t. Well that’s ridiculous! When my brother didn’t want to deal with me, he didn’t have to. If we fought, I’d have to get a ride to school from someone else even though we were going to the same place. All my life I was looked at by my older brother as nothing more than a fuck up. We are 3 years apart and we don’t really have any communication ever. He’s got his own issues like he did when we were kids and teenagers. But nothing is ever addressed like it wasn’t addressed as kids. Well, I try and live my life as vocal as possible because I fight to make all aspects of my younger years as different as possible for my own growth. I do that for me. I’ll save all of this for my next post.

The fact is that I’m grateful for another new beginning and a supportive husband and my 3 daughters. They are my everything and they believe in me even when I make mistakes and bad decisions. I’m working on getting a sponsor. I’m taking one day at a time and I’m continuing to forgive myself and learning to love me. I find that reading other people’s stories and events help me understand this whole alcoholism disease a bit better and blogging myself helps me get it out of my mind.

“Nothing changes if nothing changes…..” Shits changing!

Cheers,

Jen

What I have learned being 3 months sober

This past Thursday marked 3 months of sobriety for me.  I’ve been at this point one other time and it was as exciting as it was the first go round for me and my family. The last 3 weeks have been mentally, emotionally and physically tiring for me. The kids are down to one week left of school, my tennis league try-outs are finally finished and I felt like my critics were draining me of what my biggest supporters were trying to give me. 

My kids and my husband surprised me with recovery chips. I don’t know about how everyone else feels about these but these chips to me are frickin gold!!!! They’re pieces to look at and touch to remind me of my struggle. It sucks because just as soon as I think staying sober becomes easy, it becomes tough and exhausting and then I’m reminded that the struggle is real. Real tough and really fcked up that I have to fight this battle. Poor me, why me? Right? Then I remind myself that feeling sorry for myself weakens my spirit and a weak spirit reaches for that drink. Then I think of all the doubters, all my critics. We all know what happens to that person….throw them in with the wolves and they come out leading the pack. 

I’m leading the pack right now and I will continue to. I couldn’t do it without my stubborn attitude and the abundance of love and support I receive every day from my husband and girls. I actually couldn’t do it without the negative shits either! They make me stronger! 

  
The bird for the doubters! Sometimes you just have to……

In the funk, out of the funk…..it’s funkin’ driving me crazy!

imageBeen trying to shake the “funk” I have felt all week long. Being a woman isn’t always easy mood wise. Add sobriety, motherhood, life and everything else you juggle in there and it’s a recipe for an emotional breakdown every once in a while. I need quiet time. Quiet time is what helps refuel my zen and helps me function at 110% no matter what veers in my direction. My problem is that I’m not the best at deciding which text messages to respond to at a later time, how to cut off lengthy face to face conversations with other moms I run into at my kids school, how to say no, which phone calls not to answer and how to not go from having patience to becoming a complete stress case in 2 seconds.

The good thing is that I’m not using any of this as a way to sabotage my sobriety. None of this funk has made me think about needing a drink in order to deal or as a way to relax. It actually creates a fire within me that burns at the right times. It ignites before I workout and when I pick up my racquet before I walk out on the tennis court. These are a couple things I do to fight back when I’m pissy and these are 2 things I do to make me feel good period. I’d go crazy without them.

Despite the funk that was sprinkled on top of a pretty good week, it was overall good. 2 of my daughters were in the school talent show Friday night. It was fun seeing them so excited about dancing around on stage with their friends. I sat there watching, thinking how quickly they are growing up. I love and appreciate their unique, individual personalities. Even when I find them challenging. I was also thankful for my sobriety. I was physically, mentally & emotionally there and sober! Thursday was good too. My usual tennis inter club match day. The typical, let’s win and celebrate day. The kind of celebrating that ends in a black out. The day where I forget everything. The day I let the alcoholic take over my world and sadden, disappoint and destroy my family. We got a team win and my doubles partner and I battled (2-6, 6-1, 7-6) and won. It was also a celebration in my mind that this is the last match of the season that I have to play with her. She’s a total alcoholic who does not want to own it. She shows up about 40 minutes after the rest of us do. Looks torn back, probably hung over and only has about 5 minutes to warm up.  A year ago when we decided to be doubles partners, I had no idea that I was walking into all of this. Maybe it was a blessing in disguise. I’ve never been in a “relationship” with an alcoholic. When I started to play inter club everyone warned me that your on & off court relationship becomes a marriage and ending it is like a divorce. This made me laugh. No way! Well….it was. Things were great on Thursdays as long as I was along side her throwing drinks back and I have felt the resentment from her beginning in January when I told her I will be trying out for the following season with my ex (partner). Resentment since I’ve become sober too. I haven’t told her what I’m doing to change my life in order to not lose my family because I don’t feel I need to let her into my new world. She should try it though because hydrating with water between sets works much better than vodka.  Besides match days, I’ve been avoiding her like the plague. I’m happy to be free of that toxic on court relationship.

The not so funk is the fact that I’ve got 44 days of sobriety! I’m sleeping better and have no regrets! I’m present and I’m a believer that the worst day sober is way better than the best day drunk. Yesterday, my oldest daughter M and I went to a mother/daughter event that her girls group planned. It was awesome! Perfect bonding time. We danced, sang songs, made crafts, asked each other questions we never asked each other, took silly pictures, had lunch and made s’mores. I’m proud of what an incredible young lady she is. My favorite moment was decorating a journal for her and me to write in. The purpose of this journal is to write letters, doodle, write about past memories and dream together about the future. I love this idea and we have already started writing in it. I’m excited about this opportunity to have with her and will definitely be doing this with my younger 2 and think it would be fun for them to do with their dad as well.

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 Even through the funk, I’m believing that my recovery is the greatest gift I can give to my family. I need to realize that there will be times that are not spectacular. Times that will not have “wow” moments. Funk will show up to keep things real and teach me to grow, teach me to handle situations with grace rather than choosing to ignore. I’m an alcoholic, I’m continually looking for my next high. It’s brutal. Cheers to honesty, living one day at a time, courage to change the things I can and accepting things I cannot change.

Cry a river. Build a bridge. Get over it.

imageFor years, I couldn’t watch A&E’s Intervention. I was uncomfortable relating to many of the same things I was watching. Why would I want to draw more attention to my addiction that I wasn’t yet ready to admit was a problem? I watch it now. My throat gets tight, my stomach sour and sometimes my eyes fill up with tears.

Last night, while watching an episode of two female alcoholics it dawned on me that most of the time these addicts started their battle just like me, taking their first drink at an early age. Coming from a divorced family where one parent becomes absent from their life. Then comes the blended family and family members stating facts of the addicts early years and the troubles that were faced.

One of the addicts says something to the effect that she has grown to hate alcohol, that she doesn’t even like it. I can relate. It gets to the point that it doesn’t even taste good. Probably because of the taste it leaves in my mouth the next morning, the pain I see in my husband’s and kid’s eyes and because of the toll it takes.

Freaky!

When I started this blog, I promised myself I would not hold back on what hurts me no matter who reads this for fear that I would upset someone I love. The sober me doesn’t want to hurt anyone. The intoxicated me doesn’t care.

Sobriety makes me feel everything. My mind is sensitive as well as my heart. I was upset last night. How could I be in such a good place and Bam! Like a switch. I’m angry, resentful and not really at peace. I vent to my husband because I trust him. He’s heard it all before. Again & again. Over & over. I cry. I cry hard. Crying sometimes makes me feel uncomfortable. Shows I’m weak. Admits I’m hurt. Makes me feel foolish. I hate that. Hate brings on resentment and there you have it, a vicious cycle.

Talking to certain people or even seeing certain people make me question myself. I understand the whole, you allow people to make you feel a particular way. When they’re friends it’s easier to do than when it’s family. My expectations on how a family should be with each person having an exact role and behavior must be where this blows up for me. Are my expectations too high? Are they insane? Wrong? I need to be comfortable with the fact that just because I’m making changes doesn’t mean everyone else needs to be on board. I need to get over it, reset boundaries and realize this is not going to change. Ever.

I struggle with a couple relationships. I dream they become different. I even wish. I’m admitting that I am powerless to make these relationships different. C’mon, how much more time can I spend trying or hoping things are the way I hope for? When people tell you to trust that everything’s going to work out I want to storm off. Hello! Trust is hard for me. So more importantly, I’m learning to focus on me being 100% present for my daughters and husband. Eventually every storm runs out of rain? Right? I want the calm and I want it really bad. I don’t want to look back 10 years from now and realize that I wasted time I had with my kids by living in a state of perpetual distraction.

I’m learning from my mistakes. Repeating them over and over would be insanity. I won’t go there.

Sober Ambiguity: 13 Confusing Phrases

Awesome interpretation of what we tend to say during early sobriety and what it means vs. what it sounds like it means. Thank you sober identity.com 🙂

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Under the influence in the carpool lane

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This is hard for me to put out there. I’m tired of stuffing this deep inside me. 5 days a week when I pick my 3 girls up from elementary school I think about the horrible mistakes I’ve made over and over again. I become a punching bag for me. I’d become a punching bag for many people if they knew I have picked up my kids at school after going on a drinking binge. It’s hard to swallow the fact that I’ve been behind the wheel of a car, allowing myself to go near a school with children everywhere and driving with my kids in the car.

It’s sick. It’s wrong. Horrible. Disgusting. What the FCK was I thinking? When the alcoholic took over, I wasn’t thinking. I didn’t care. Or at least I couldn’t care. My kids must have had the most ill feelings ever. How could someone they trust make them feel this way and put them in this situation. Lives at stake. I’m sick writing about this. I want to cry. But I don’t want to hold onto this any longer. I want to continue to heal. I’m owning everything I have done drunk. Writing this blog so far has been therapeutic.

There were 2 incidences this week that made my kids very leery. Wednesday, I spent some time with my Mom. It was much needed. Our relationship is a work in progress and I’m taking baby steps. I was driving her car, so we picked the kids up. They immediately got in her car, studied my eyes and were very inquisitive on why I was driving her car. Took a couple of minutes but we both wanted them to understand and feel secure as to why even though the answer was simple. The 2nd time was on Thursday. Thursday’s are my match days for the tennis team that I’m on. The match was out of town. On the way back, there was traffic, road construction and an accident. I called the school and let them know I wouldn’t be there until 10 minutes after school let out. I drive up to the school, my happiness sitting there waiting. Right before anyone opens a door, my oldest stares long and hard. I smile. She’s guarding her younger sisters making sure Mom isn’t late because of vodka induced crazy eyes. Thursday’s have been historically drunk days. I play my match, we win and celebrate. They get into the car and I explain why I’m late. I ask what he best part of their day was, as I do every day. My youngest says, “You coming late and you being ok…..”. Wow! It stings and comforts me all at once. I want to immediately tell myself what a shitty mother I’ve been but I can’t keep beating myself up. So I told myself that a shitty mother wouldn’t be over a month sober.

I don’t care how long it takes to reinforce to my 3 girls that Mom is sober and present. I will do whatever it takes. I want to be the sober super hero sans a drink in my hand.

Sobriety round 2 hasn’t been easy every single day. The not drinking part has been the easiest because I hate what alcohol has done to me and to my family. Some days I live in the whole “pink cloud” world. Other days, life is a reality, as it should be and I don’t feel like being overly happy. Shit, I’m human. I get tired and can’t run 100 mph all day long. I expect a lot from myself. A lot! I don’t always see the problem with that but my therapist says that having too many expectations on myself will get in the way of me loving myself when I can’t get every expectation of myself done in the time frame I’ve set for myself.

I’m a work in progress as I enjoy day 37 of sobriety.