Coloring in the Black Hole

Cue the fanfare! Today is Day 100. I made it.

I don’t really know what to write. I feel “changed” in a subtle way. I had a thought last night as I was packing for my weekend trip, “It’s nice to not have to plan on being hungover for any part of this weekend.” I tossed my running shoes in my bag with confidence – I may be tired on Sunday morning, but I’ll still be up for a run!

Earlier this week I went bowling. I was nervous about it because bowling and drinking are one in the same for me! It’s Wednesday? Oh, okay, I guess I’ll have 5 beers instead of double vodka sodas and then I’ll be SHOCKED when I suck at bowling. People say, “I’m terrible at bowling until I have a few beers and loosen up,” and I was definitely in that camp.

But guess what?

I’m better at bowling when I’m not drunk. ROCKET SCIENCE!

After our game we all sat and talked. Some people drank, some people didn’t and then at some point I excused myself to use the restroom. I walked in and found a girl comforting her drunk friend. I have been this girl – both girls – numerous times. Then the drunk girl started puking in the sink. I was so relieved that it wasn’t me! Her friend clearly had things under control so I high-tailed it out of there, but if ever I needed a sign to continue my sobriety, that was it!

Life is starting to feel normal without alcohol. It’s no longer the first thing that pops into my head when I am invited to a social function. When I have a bad day, I get excited to treat myself to a giant bowl of ice cream! I get emotional, I get angry, I get stressed and anxious and sad – just like before, but instead of numbing the feelings and pushing them down, down, down I just ugly cry, or fling myself on my bed in a fit of despair – I laugh at myself for throwing an adult tantrum and then I move on. Or I create my own sanctuary and treat myself with the kindness I would a close friend who’s feeling stressed, anxious or sad.

All my life I have struggled with needing to be in control. Alcohol took that away without my even realizing it. I thought I had it all figured out, but I certainly did not!  I know I have a long way to go when it comes to balancing different facets in my life, but sobriety has given me the control I so desperately crave and the confidence to tackle anything!

I didn’t know what I was capable of until I quit drinking. I went straight from anxious child, to depressed teenager into alcoholic adult without ever getting to know myself as a healthy, happy person.

For the first time, I truly like myself.

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