Wednesday, June 26, 2013

My First "Meeting"

I made a blanket! 
Hi y'all!

There is so much to tell you, almost too much. Feel free to take breaks. :)

Right now I'm sitting outside in the driveway, barely able to stand being inside after being in the woods for four days. The house feels so small, so dark, so small. It's hard to concentrate out here with all the singing (Hampton balancing on a ball and needing looking at mostly) and the world going by-ing.

Yesterday I went to my first meeting. Not an AA meeting, but twelve step based and for women. It was such a strange and very cool feeling to be in a room with other women who are rolling along right here in my same boat. I was jealous of the people who had been to treatment (I know, I know. Crazy talk. That being said, I think I could only benefit from some weeks of self examination and help. That being said, we could never afford something like that- money wise or what to do with the children-wise.) I felt so glad to be in the room with these women. I could not help staring, looking at them, seeing me like a mirror right there in front of me.

Today I meet one-on-one with the woman who leads the meetings.

And then look! Here we are this morning, and you didn't even know I'd gone.

Yesterday after lunch I met with my women's group leader. By myself. As in: all eyes on me. (as in all two of them) It was OK- hard to explain my career as a drinker in an hour and a half. Hard because I keep remembering things (the way I had to drive to my senior beach trip alone since I got wasted after graduation, blacked out, and woke up at some dude's house.....ugh.) And then by remembering things like that realizing I had a big problem way before I thought I had even a little one.

I could take all day to sit here and sob and cradle sad me.

To change the subject a bit (we all need breathers from these heavy things) I had fun on our camping trip I was concerned about. Everyone drank all three nights (well, not me or the children) but not the usual booze fest. One night was heavier and people started to get that drunk way and it made me a little uncomfortable but also sort of helped since drunk isn't really cool or all that pretty. And no one seemed to be having more fun just because they were drinking- it actually seemed like they were having less fun the more they drank. Huh. And waking up without a hangover in the woods? Glorious. God, I love being sober at times like that. Not struggling with bike rides up mountains because I drank too much "sipping" tequila the night before. Not wishing the children would just go away so I could drink and smoke and blow off all cares. (i.e. fuck off life, I've got vacation drinking to do.)

I got questioned some, and I was honest about why I quit. For me, I cannot do the "on medication/taking a year off" thing. I have to go ahead and get the awkward so-you-don't-drink-anymore talks out of the way so I don't have to explain again next year.

And then there was the baby shower with guys and drinks last week too. Nothing like a drunk person with red wine stained teeth at five o'clock at a fucking baby shower, let me tell you. Although most everyone was mostly sober it was kind of uncomfortable and small talk-y (which I don't really like) but I made it (and then spent waaaaayyyyyy too much money on food for our camping trip- huh.) and now I don't have any more obligations where booze is involved in the near future. Phew.

One thing talking to my person yesterday showed me was that what I'm doing is amazing. Getting sober without any treatment or meetings is fucking hard. I told her about my blog, and y'all and how much that helps. She was still a bit blown away. So now I'm a bit blown away.

I think that getting to six months also sort of threw me for a loop. Not that I didn't think I was going to make it, but it was a reality check- a sort of I'm really doing this, and it's working! But life is still hard and sad and totally overwhelming sometimes. And now that I gave up my coping skill (ha, "coping skill") I'm sort of flailing around trying to figure out how it is I deal with all the huge emotions and just things that come up- sometimes out of the middle of nowhere. There's a lot more to deal with than I thought. Just stopping drinking doesn't make the me go away. Which is awesome since I'm figuring out that I really do like myself (high five on that) and hard because I still have baggage stuff like regrets and shames. And anger at the wasted time, grrrrrrrr, the wasted time.

Well, that wasn't so much after all. Life has been busy, and mostly really good. :) And there's lots more to come.


  1. So happy to hear your voice again - I felt like a mother checking in on her sleeping baby when I blogged you today and happily found you awake and smiling!

  2. Hey - There are lots of outpatient options where you can get the kind of help you're talking about. My psychiatrists office does a great outpatient program. They work around your schedule and, best of all, insurance cover it!

    I'll email you the information and you can call them and maybe get a referral to a program like it in your area.

    You've come so far and, without sounding condescending, I'm so proud to be in your space!


    1. Thanks- I have my group person I can see on a one on one basis if needed. I'm glad you're sharing this space with me! :)

  3. Wow! So much going on...and groovy blanket there, my friend :) I am afraid to pick up any sewing or knitting needle, lest I take one of my own eyes out!

    I really love how you've come along you're meeting other women in recovery, and you can see and feel the power in that, even if it's just one or a few others. It's a wonderful thing to be a part of, and yeah, you are absolutely right - this is hard to do on our own. But even one other face-to-face person makes such a difference! I just finished having a coffee with a young man and his darling 14 month daughter and he is new to the program and recovery. I can't tell you how buzzed I am from it (and not just the coffee). It's amazing how it feels when two alcoholics get together. And it's not all heavy talk either (hard to do with a teething toddler in tow!). Nice for me too to get out of just recovery talk.

    Life is a beautiful thing and you're an active and contributing part of it. You are certainly a part of my recovery. And congrats on your almost six months! What a wicked journey.


    1. Power in numbers. And in seeing. And in holding hands at the end and thanking God/whoever. Connection. Gratitude. Wow.

  4. I totally get what you mean about feeling jealous of those who went to treatment. I felt that way too (until my friend said they paid $30K for hers...uh). What you're doing is amazing and I hope you know this is hard work and your brain and heart need time and things like camping trips where you see more what you're gaining. 6 months is something to be proud of, but moreso that you're looking for ways to feel even better. Awesome post.

    1. I was reminded not so gently (but in a good way) how hard this is by my therapy person. "It's not the same old same old" she said strongly. "So don't act like it is." Oh. :)

  5. I was wondering where you'd gone! Great news about the women's group, that sounds great. I've been going to AA and love the women's meetings ... really like meeting people face to face, love the support and openess of everyone there.

    I am going to try and be more honest with people about what's really going on... I am still pulling the health kick/ antibiotics story when people question why I'm not drinking. If I carry on like this I'll be 'taking antibiotics' forever!

    1. you don't have to tell the whole story, I've found that "Oh, no thank you, I don't drink" in a breezy way usually meets with no curiosity. Then if pushed: "no, thank you" and walk away. The people who need to know know, the people who don't should just take it at face value. :)

      Face to face is good. So is this. I'll take all the support I can get. :)