Today is THE best day of the year!!! I have been sober for 3 years, or 1,095 days to be exact. January 2, 2013 I woke up in the detox unit of Lutheran Hospital in Cleveland . Gleaming white walls, plastic covered mattress with sheets that felt like cardboard, a pounding headache, a snow storm brewing outside, all alone, and yet I distinctly remember feeling complete relief. My game was up, everyone knew the truth, I didn’t have to lie to cover the lie that I lied about to my loved ones. I had arrived, I had accepted that I was an alcoholic. I surrendered my whole self to God and was ready to accept the help I so desperately needed and desired. I breathed a huge sigh of relief.
I don’t want to dwell on the past too much, for it just that, the past. But it is important to me to reflect on where I came from. It keeps me humble. It also stirs something up inside of me that makes me feel uncomfortable and almost ill. I think that something is the realization that I was horribly sick, a raging alcoholic, a sad, desperate, lonely, miserable woman, whom was dying inside. Even as I type this, I pause, that feeling growing in the pit of my stomach. I guess it’s a good feeling in that I know that I NEVER want to go back to that nightmare….like I said, it keeps me humble.
So fast forward to today….WOW! I am in a place that I never imagined I would be 3 years ago. I honestly LOVE my life, so much so I’m gonna say it again….I LOVE MY LIFE! I have an intimate circle of family and friends. I have the most rewarding career. My kids are THE best (I am biased), and I get along with their dad (my ex husband) better now than I have in years. I am reaching fitness goals slowly but surely. I embarked on a journey, a lifestyle change of clean eating. I am in a healthy loving relationship with an amazing man, who is in recovery as well. Getting sober and staying sober have made all this possible. Without AA, without my sponsor Melanie, who has stood by my side since day 1….and then day 1 again… without God and the 12 steps, there is absolutely no way I would be here today…Day 1095….and God willing day 1096.
So what do I hope for in 2017? To live in the moment and enjoy the little things each and everyday as they come. I decided a while back that I was constantly waiting for the next “big thing” or “waiting for other shoe to drop” or speeding through stuff to get to the end result or the next item on my list. Well guess what? Life is too short…..its getting shorter…I realized that I was missing a lot….all kinds of special moments, a smile, a tender touch, a conversation….and so much more. And for what?? Think about it for a minute….what is so darn important that you can’t pause for a moment and take in the silence? Hug your kid or loved one? Listen to a friend for a few extra moments, let go of the petty stuff and live in the now!
How grateful am I that I can sit and type this as a sober woman? I know too many who are still sick and ravaged by this horrible disease. I thank God each and everyday for another day sober and for those who have stuck by me on the journey….My momma who is the heart and soul of our family, and who has been to hell and back with me. I love you. My 2 sisters, whom haven’t always understood “it” (and that’s ok), but have always listened, empathized, and have forgiven their big sis for her selfishness. M&M, the loves of my life, whom love their mommy unconditionally, whom have endured more than any young children should have too. I love you to the moon and back. My bestie Kerry; through it all we have stuck by each other…in good times and in bad, sickness and in health:). My partner in crime, Reggie….who knew those puzzles would play a role in our friendship and recovery. My work family…..you never threw me to the curb, you don’t judge me and you are the most hilarious and ‘sick’ group of individuals that I am priveledged to work with on a daily basis. My fellow blogging friends; especially Paul, you inspire me and keep me motivated on the writing and running track! Last but definitely not least, Todd….I cant find the words…(shocking I know!) you came into my life when I least expected it. You have my heart.
2017 is going to be the year of new adventures. It goes along with my theme of living in the moment. I have decided to run the Cleveland half marathon in may (already registered), a come back of sorts. I am going to do more writing and lots of it. Finally, I want to do more advocacy work in addiction. Much of society still considers addiction a lifestyle choice, a bad habit of sorts. Education is desperately needed. This is a disease and I am the face of this disease. I hope to make a difference. I hope to help even one individual.
Well that about wraps up my anniversary post. My heart overflows with gratitude. I am excited to see what awaits in 2017….but will take each moment as they come and enjoy it!!