Sunday, April 17, 2022



This morning I woke up and finished watching Broadchurch. I canceled my Saturday clients because my voice is still gone. 

A dear friend suggested fresh ginger tea. I gather the things together- the little knife I got at the thrift store, the pretty stars and animals saucer, part of an espresso set from when I worked at a restaurant called Upstream when I first moved to Charleston when I was 30 years old, which is now 20 years ago. I got that espresso set because the cup was chipped and cracked and it was going to get thrown out. Where's the cup? I’m not sure, it was around for a long time but things like that get lost in moves or suddenly seem like garbage since they're chipped and I maybe threw it away. I can’t remember. 

It made me think about how hungover I was then, at 30, a lot of the time. A lot of my life. Being hungover, feeling bad- it’s just not part of my life anymore, it's been gone for so long. That I did that to myself, dragged myself through my days like that, had babies like that…oh, oh. How it makes my heart ache. 

When I look at this scene: my own little house, the pretty things I have, behind the lovely cup my mom gave me last Christmas because it’s deep blue and has nature and owls on it and she knew I'd like it, the good loose leaf tea in the beautiful blue jars that belonged to my great grandmother. Was I always this loved? 

It’s strange to realize how much I suffered at my own hand. Is this a stage of recovery/sobriety? What would I call it? Realization? I’m winding my way to 10 years this year. TEN. YEARS. WITHOUT. DRINKING. Me. 

How did I do it? Go to work, live? Feeling so shitty? And how did I decide to do it over and over again, not caring about the me on the other side of getting drunk, drunk, blackout drunk? It makes me proud of my determination in a strange way- that I was so driven to show up even when inside I was suffering so so much- physically from the effects of so much alcohol, mentally from so much else. 


This morning I woke up, made coffee. I did my little morning routine- while my moka pot heats up the coffee I unload the dishwasher and make my bed. I empty the litter box. I check my email and social media while I drink my first coffee and poop. I sit at my round dining room table, the one where I sat with my beloved grandmother as a little long haired girl, drinking sweet milky coffee. I read my book.  

I didn't used to be able to drink coffee when I drank alcohol. The anxiety and edginess it produced was so overwhelming- when I think of it now I know it just made the voice of something is really wrong here unbearably LOUD. I would get so shaky and nervous and uncomfortable that I just became a person who could not drink coffee instead of a person who could not drink alcohol. 

Now, my morning coffee gives me a sense of accomplishment- I can drink some coffee and be okay in the world. I don't know why it's these little things- these every day little things that make me feel the most like I found my way. These little things like coffee, making my bed every day. Washing my face and brushing my teeth at night. My patience and not taking things personally with my children, who are now both lovely teenagers. I don't just care about myself, I care for myself. 

Being sick this past week has been a bit of a chore and a light bulb in my head. It has taken me a lot of reality checks and presence to remember that being sick people aren't bad people. I made myself sick drinking for so many years and then had to deal with those consequences like nothing was happening. Like I was fine. Years of pretending you feel fine when you actually feel like you're dragged out dying makes it weird to be actually sick, or hurting- like I'm faking this cold, or I went and did this to myself on purpose. Like it's my fault. Like there's blame to be tossed around and I will throw it and catch it and hold it tight because that's what you do when you drink a lot to cope. 

I am really proud of myself. It seems like such a small thing: take sweet tender care of yourself when you're sick. For me, my work continues to be showing up in the world with the truth in my outstretched hands. 


  1. What a lovely reflection. Thank you so much for sharing.

  2. People do recover, every single day. From alcoholism substance abuse, drug addiction, alcohol addiction, dual diagnosis, overeating, codependency and more- people do get better.

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