I’m guessing you can relate.

I had a weird realization the other day that one of the reasons I fought so hard against having a problem with alcohol is that admitting that was admitting defeat to my father. I can’t explain the rationale for this, but once I realized that was true for me, I had to laugh.

On another note (or not so much) this song by Dodie really hits home.

Guiltless
There is a wall in my life built by you (mmm)
You opened a door that a kid shouldn’t walk through
Oh, but I’m not bitter, I’m just tired
No use getting angry at the way that you’re wired
Ignorant trauma in one afternoon
And I could never let you know (ooh you’d never get it)
And now I’m the one who can’t let go (ooh don’t say it’s genetic)
Is it real? You believe you’re guiltless
Oh, I can tell you believe you’re guiltless
But I don’t think I’d feel better if I opened your eyes
I’ll carry your burden ’til the day that you die
Is it real? You believe you’re guiltless
(Mmm)
I’ll never know why you favour that tone (mmm)
Not one shred of hope so I built up my own
Oh, but I’m not bitter, I’m just tired
No use getting angry at the way that you’re wired
A dark politician will end up alone
And I could never let you know (ooh you’d never get it)
And now I’m the one who can’t let go (ooh don’t say it’s genetic)
Is it real? You believe you’re guiltless
Oh, I can tell you believe you’re guiltless
But I don’t think I’d feel better if I opened your eyes
I’ll carry your burden ’til the day that you die
Is it real? You believe you’re guiltless
(Mmm)
I’m not bitter, I’m just tired
No use getting angry at the way that you’re wired
(I’m not bitter, I’m just tired)
I could never let you know (ooh)
(No use getting angry at the way that you’re wired)
Is it real? You believe you’re guiltless
(I’m not bitter, I’m just tired)
(No use getting angry at the way that you’re wired)
Ooh ooh
I could never let you know (ooh)
(No use getting angry at the way that you’re wired)
I’m not bitter, I’m just tired
No use getting angry at the way that you’re wired
(I’m not bitter, I’m just tired)
(No use getting angry at the way that you’re wired)
Is it real? You believe you’re guiltless
(I’m not bitter, I’m just tired)
(No use getting angry at the way that you’re wired)
Is it real? You believe you’re guiltless
(I’m not bitter, I’m just tired)
(No use getting angry at the way that you’re wired)
Source: LyricFind
Songwriters: Dorothy Clark
Guiltless lyrics © BMG Rights Management
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2 years

Hi all (probably 3 of you reading this! 😀 ),

Here I am, 2 years later, still alcohol-free.

Some observations:

This time of year is harder on me than other times of the year, I think because I get flashes of what I was experiencing right before finally calling the rehab and giving up. My life was absolutely miserable and I was terrified all. the.time. That said, I can say most of the time I am just living my life without these flashes, and I’m not sure that would be possible if I were in a 12 step program being reminded of it day in and day out, and for that I am grateful. So grateful to just be living. I am SO grateful for the peace I feel today. It’s pretty remarkable I was living day to day in such terror, and that’s gone. I wake up, I meditate, I have my coffee, I work out, and I live.

Speaking of working out, I’m down 63 pounds since the last time I wrote here. I am a healthy weight, and I literally lost a third of my weight. I feel so much better. I feel like my body, mind, and spirit have aligned.

I’m happy to say my best friend as well as my sister, both who struggled with alcohol for a long time, are also alcohol-free and have been for a good long stretch. It’s really nice to be able to talk to them about anything and to know they truly get it.

I think struggle is the word that would best describe my life prior to giving up. I don’t struggle anymore.

I truly owe this to DBT and to the SMART meetings in the beginning (I haven’t attended a meeting in probably a year and a half). I needed those meetings in the beginning, and am so grateful they were available online so I could remain anonymous. DBT has changed my life forever. I still want to take time to take a course on being a DBT counselor. Even if I did nothing with it professionally, I know it would be valuable in cementing it into my being.

I don’t have any grand words of wisdom, but I am grateful for you all who have listened to me along the way.

I have achieved indifference about alcohol. I’m disinterested. I’m not afraid of it; I just simply have no use for it, nor would I bother with it. It’s not worth my time, even if I could drink normally again. It’s just not worth the risk, and I don’t care. What a glorious feeling.

Heldy

Everybody Knows: 10 Lessons from 10 Years of Sobriety Without AA | The Fix

This is a good read that my sister sent me this morning. Please to enjoy!

– Heldy (1 year, 10 months sober – also not attending meetings, but deadly serious about my sobriety)

In early sobriety, someone told me that since I’d gotten sober without AA, I wasn’t an alcoholic, and that since I didn’t go to meetings and ate the occasional mushroom, I wasn’t sober.

Source: Everybody Knows: 10 Lessons from 10 Years of Sobriety Without AA | The Fix

Talk therapy may not be for me.

So, since the last post, I’ve discovered a few things. First, as I mentioned about seeing booze everywhere, not wanting it but resenting that it wasn’t an option (resenting is a strong word. Annoyed.), I no longer feel that. I think the mere act of writing about it diffused any energy left there. Poof. I don’t resent it. It is what it is. I still see it, but it carries very little more energy than the bread on the table I can’t touch. The longer away from it, the easier it is, and the more I admit what I feel as I feel, whether in my head or here on this blog, the more the energy shifts away from that. I don’t drink and I’m really fucking okay with that.

I have discovered this doesn’t just apply to my relationship with alcohol. It applies to anything I am feeling. As I mentioned before, that documentary and post conversation about sexual abuse triggered me in a way that really surprised me. I had thought I had dealt with most of the stuff, but more came out and clearly, it made me emotional. Just writing about it here pretty much healed that for me, so when I went to the therapist I’d chosen, it was actually quite an unpleasant experience.

I spent an hour giving her my full, sorry, sad and cringeworthy background in regards to this issue.  I hate talking about these things. It made me cry, which I also hate. I find it embarrassing, especially in regards to these things. I feel such a sense of shame, as the pattern repeated itself over the years and in multiple ways with multiple people, and I’ve carried the weight of feeling responsible on some level for all of it. Logically, I know this is bullshit. If I were hearing about this from someone else about someone else, it would be clear to me that this wasn’t their fault. I KNOW this; I just wish I felt this. I would love to feel this. The fact is, I don’t dwell on it at all, but when it does come up, I feel shame. I have my entire life felt like damaged goods just faking it. I also feel like I’ve done a really good job of dealing with it for the most part.

That said, I left the session feeling worse than I did going in. She nodded at all the right times but didn’t explore anything with me. I felt exposed and silly, as I have worked on all of this before and made peace for the most part with it, so bringing it up again was just really unpleasant and embarrassing.

I get more out of this blog than that, and it’s clear to me that just acknowledging feelings goes a long way to diffusing the energy around it and moving forward.

I have lied to keep people close to me, and I don’t want to anymore. Certain things have happened to me that I have denied sparing others’ feelings about those involved, and I don’t want to do that anymore, AND I don’t want to dwell on it either, as it is over and I am at peace with that part of my past. Denying that it happened though to keep people close to me is damaging to others, and it’s not right or fair, and I am strong enough now to say that.

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I’m still around. I’m still sober.

I wanted to give a quick update. As the title says, I’m still sober. It was 18 months in January, which was the original goal for me. I made it.

Observations: I still think about alcohol on a daily basis. That doesn’t mean I think about how I wish I could drink. It just means that something about it will cross my mind daily, whether it’s just about me being sober, or seeing an ad, or what have you. Last night we went to dinner and I noticed which tables had wine. I felt annoyed that I still do that, and annoyed that I can’t have it, despite not wanting it. How’s that for a dialectic? I wish I could have it even though I don’t want it. I really don’t want it! I just am annoyed that I can’t have it. Now in truth, of COURSE, I could have it. I really, really don’t want what comes with having it. I don’t miss it. I just hate being told what to do, even if it’s me telling me that. 😛

I have been mentioning the need to lose weight and get healthy. Having a thyroid condition has made losing weight a very difficult task. Almost impossible, and couple that with having had a full hysterectomy, I have a lot of things going against that. I was delighted to find out that despite that, the HCG diet still works for me. I started it March 9th. As of today, I am down 33 pounds. I have another 30 or so to go, but I feel like I can do this now. I will start up the weight loss portion of the diet again after a 3-week stabilization phase beginning of next month and plan to be at my fighting weight in June.

In other news, I’ve reached out to a DBT counselor about starting regular sessions. I thought I’d pretty well dealt with some trauma in my life, but it’s seeping out again. “Leaving Neverland” and the Oprah special after it had me in a puddle. I clearly have some more to work out in that area. I feel ready. I’m a little afraid as I know it will impact some relationships that I’ve been willing to compromise myself for in order to have them in my life, and I don’t know what that will look like when I’m through this, but it’s simply time. By the way, if you haven’t seen the Oprah special on HBO about Leaving Neverland, it demonstrates perfectly the concept of DBT – how 2 things that seems so opposed can exist side by side with one another. This concept is what really freed me from my addiction. Once I quit fighting the notion that something couldn’t be true because this other thing was true, I could heal.  To that end, I’d like to update the Jung quote in the picture. I am what happened to me, AND I am what I choose to become.

Here is the homework. Be warned that if you are a survivor, this could be triggering and it could be healing.

 

Happy New Year!

Name: Heldy
Drug of choice: alcohol
Clean date: 7/24/17
Days sober: 1 year, 5 months 8 days

I am feeling focused because the first of the year is a time for me to look forward to what I want to achieve.

What I’m working on: Seeing the basic goodness in everyone I encounter.

Meditated? YES! I missed Christmas and the day after, but past that, I am solidly like 2 months now of meditating every morning before coffee. It’s working for me.

Success? I realized this morning that 2018 was a completely sober year for me.

Challenge? I need to focus on the rest of my health.

Have you felt triggered since group? I hate the word trigger. I haven’t wanted to jump into a lake of wine in longer than I can remember. I have attended a lot of social gatherings lately and yes, the thought crossed my mind of what would it taste like again, but that was absolutely the end of that thought. It never went further, not even “playing the tape”. I’ve memorized the fucking tape. 🙂 I’ve also become quite comfortable with my excuse for not drinking, which is 100% true even if it’s not the entire story, in that alcohol triggers (that word!) migraines for me and it had become unbearable. 100% truth there.

Do you intend to harm yourself or others? No

Homework: It’s time for me to do my yearly collage so that’s what I’m setting as my homework.

Are you open to feedback? Yes

HAPPY NEW YEAR! BE GLAD THIS DOESN’T HAVE TO BE YOUR LIFE ANYMORE!

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– Heldy

Happy A-Ha Holidays

Name: Heldy
Drug of choice: alcohol
Clean date: 7/24/17
Days sober: 1 year, 4 months 4 days

It seems I naturally come back here each month. I obviously am no longer holding myself to a particular schedule, and this is working for me.

This time of year is always tricky, but this time I know exactly why. It’s not all the booze everywhere. It’s all the socializing. Something I have finally really accepted about myself is that I’m an introvert. Putting myself in social situations is not comfortable for me. At all. I can do it, but it’s really difficult for me, especially mustering any motivation to go (which may be the worst part). Generally, I will find some pleasure in it, but for the most part, it’s just not comfortable.

So now, here we are again. That time of year when I have to be social (and I do have to be social – this is a requirement). I am still an introvert, only now I am an introvert that doesn’t fit in. I realized recently that THAT is the part about drinking that I actually miss the most at this point. It’s bad enough being an introvert in a social setting, but let’s add onto that the fact that I’m one of only a couple, but usually THE only one, without a drink in my hand (and wondering if they’re wondering as to why).  I miss feeling like I kind of belong.

It’s a small price for all the positive things not drinking does for me (like being alive at all) and I will get over it, especially now that I have figured out that it’s that that has me feeling so uncomfortable. Being able to name it helps. I’m an introvert who sticks out a little more because I don’t drink. Yay. Again, I’ll get over it.

As an aside, I finally read the entire “This Naked Mind”, and I have to say, I found it a little infuriating. In the beginning, I was really excited because I could relate to what she was describing as my drinking. As it went on, however, she states over and over that everyone is in a different stage of alcohol dependence, and then periodically denies she said that. I have lived with a man for 20 years that I can count on 1 hand how many times he overindulged.  It hasn’t gotten progressively more. He drinks every day, and he never drinks too much. He has an evening ritual, but I’ve watched him not drink if he’s sick, not drink at parties, etc., etc. Now maybe it was true in her experience that everyone in her life has a problem. That’s just not the case in my life, and I found the book irritating because of it. That and her continued contradictions about it. That said, in true dialectic form, it was also useful to read. I also had a renewed appreciation for DBT (Dialectical Behavior Therapy).

Speaking of…

I continue to go to a weekly class with my daughter, and I finally determined I really must meditate every day, so that’s something I am doing. I have associated it with my morning coffee. I meditate before I can pour a cup. It’s working. Today was day 24.

Homework:

I watched this yesterday and found it super useful.

Happy Holidays!

– Heldy