Today Is Day Five

“Own the story and write the ending.” 

– Brene′ Brown

“Do you think I’m an alcoholic?”

Every time I asked my husband or my friends this question, they said no. After all, alcoholics drive drunk and careen into oncoming traffic. They smash through their neighbor’s flowerbeds, over mailboxes and people. They get arrested.

Alcoholics black out and vomit and forget to shower themselves before going in public. They reek of vodka.

Alcoholics ruin their relationships because they choose alcohol over love, safety, and their bank account. This did not describe me — not yet, anyway. I only met 8 out of the 10 criterion on the “Am I An Alcoholic?” quiz that I took online. I was an 80% alcoholic who has literally scrounged together pocket change to buy a bottle of $5.99 wine on more than one occasion.

Let me be clear: my reasons for loving wine are iron-clad. If I were to make a list of all the reasons why I need to throw a few back at the end of the day, you’d probably need a drink by the time you were finished reading it. The problem is, though, that as my life has gradually become more stressful, my drinking also increased. What was once a glass or two a few times a week grew to half a bottle of wine, plus a few shots of whiskey. Eventually, it became a whole bottle of wine, every night.

What will happen if something really bad happens? Will I start drinking at breakfast?

I rarely felt hungover. I’m hardy. Sometimes I felt foggy, yes, but never unable to function. I still got up early in the morning, drank a pot of coffee, and began the day per usual. But increasingly, I panicked if I ran out of wine. I’d frantically text my husband to stop at the store on the way home. I NEEDED it. I didn’t know how else to exist.

Alcoholics don’t materialize in one day, after all.

This my fifth day sober. It’s not so much the not drinking that I’m struggling with, but acknowledging the emotions that I’ve been drinking to avoid. We medicate to protect ourselves from ourselves. Living without that barrier is, frankly, terrifying.

Today, I’m owning my story. The ending is within my control.

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Day five!

(If you liked this post, then you should follow me on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter!)

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25 thoughts on “Today Is Day Five

  1. So much love to you! Thank you for sharing this. I too know the panic of not having wine in the house and the feelings that bubble up when I stop for a day or two. Thank you for your honesty and strength. Thank you.

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  2. My husband and I recently did the whole30 and had to give up drinking. I quickly realized that every night I was lying in bed continually worrying about EVERYTHING for HOURS and that I had been drinking wine every night to just get to sleep without anxiety. After we finished the 30 days,I realized I could get through those crazy stay at home mom days just fine without the wine during the week. I didn’t even want it! It’s been nice to add it back on the weekends, but I enjoy it so much more now. I sip slower, can have just a glass or two, I’m not counting down how much of the bottle I have left. I not commenting on alcoholism or not because thats personal to you, but I know I had an unhealthy relationship with almost nightly wine and it was nice to reset and figure out more of the “why” I was wanting it. You are doing awesome!

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  3. I enjoy reading your posts. You combine humor with real life situations, that aren’t always funny. I think you may underestimate the hope and encouragement you may give other moms in similar situations. Those that realize it, and those that don’t. My kids are grown and gone, but I remember the days of not enough of me to go around and the new ways to feel guilty, that I never knew existed before I was a mom. Keep writing, keep running, and I’ll definitely keep reading. All the best to you and your family!

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  4. I don’t know you personally, but I am proud of you. Being honest with yourself about your frailties is the first step in leading a full and complete life.

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  5. Love it. I am a recovering addict myself spending over half of my life in addiction, I’m in my thirties now. I have a blog to help mothers balance out that “supermom” status while maintaining sobriety. As you mentioned, there is a stigma on addiction, that you have to be at your lowest point, homeless, and rancid to be considered an “addict” which is so not true. One thing I have learned in my recovery journey is that addiction does not discriminate. It affects all walks of life. Some hide it better than others, some are simply too far gone to even care.

    I am so happy for you. I wish you all the happiness and success in the world. Let me know if there’s anything you need. 🙂

    xoxo,
    Natasha @Maintaining Miracles

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Great post! I also blog about sobriety in motherhood, and man..it has been a journey (most of my posts have been private, I just went more public recently). I also didn’t think I was an alcoholic, but after a while I had to acknowledge that so many of my problems were coming from drinking. It was too much. The emotions took me by surprise when I quit (they really hit around 30-90 days for me).

    21 months sober here. You can do it. It’s SO worth it. ❤ I wrote about quitting drinking here: https://bloominash.com/why-i-quit-drinking/

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  7. Wow. Good for you, recognizing that this is perhaps a problem and that you need to fix it now before it becomes a bigger problem. My father is an alcoholic who has been sober for just about 8 years now. He denied having a problem for most of his life. It took falling down a flight of stairs and the resultant two brain surgeries and a coma before he could even admit that things had gotten out of control.

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  8. Thank you! Thank you from the child of an alcoholic who is married to the child of an alcoholic. This is such an important thing you are doing for your children. I wish you the best and happy times ahead.

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  9. I don’t know you personally, but I have been following you on Instagram for awhile.. As a fellow recovering “white picket fence alcoholic,” I admire the bravery it takes to share your journey with such a large audience. In a world where so many mom jokes revolve around needing a drink, you have become a breath of fresh air ❤ Thank you

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  10. Do you know Laura McKowen? She runs an incredible blog on recovery and our terrifying/wondrous life, with some self deprecating parenting thrown in for good measure. You may find even more supportive and helpful resources there. Good luck Harmony! All good things ahead.

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