Stigma

Sitting in the Discomfort

found

Life is hard.

My hard might not be the same as your hard but it’s hard. Today several things came together as sort of a perfect storm and I almost drank.

Thankfully during the past 139 days the urge to drink has been few and far between for me and never too strong.  Until today.

However, let me repeat myself. I almost drank. I almost drank.  But I DIDN’T.

I sat feeling all these emotions and I was tired and hungry and my mind was racing and I knew I was not in a good place. So I did the only thing I could think of that might possibly save me (and it did) – I texted a sober friend and word vomited the craziness bouncing around in my head.

I don’t actually know this friend “in real life” – we met through an online community of women in recovery. But holy shit, has she been the best friend and mentor a girl like me in recovery could ask for. I believe with all my heart the universe purposefully led our paths to cross and I will be forever grateful.

She talked me off the ledge and reminded me that while the first 30 minutes might feel nice, it wouldn’t stop at 30 minutes.  She is a big reason I will wake to see 140 days of sobriety tomorrow.

I have a great online community of people in recovery who get it.  People who understand, who love me without judging me and see the good in me – they know I’m more than my addiction or poor choices in the past.

I am angry that the “real world,” including “real” people in my life do not. To be honest, there are people who know I’m sober now without knowing much about why or what happened to lead me here and overall they’ve been great about it.  However, for a variety of reasons, I can’t truly be out and honest about my recovery with people who know me in real life.

This sucks on so many levels.

The one that really gets me though is that I can’t be who I am. I am proud of my recovery and I am learning to own my journey and know that I am truly a good person who has made some mistakes.  I am a survivor, a fighter.  Unfortunately, the world is filled with people who would only see me as my addiction if I were to live my life as authentically as possible.  With two young children to protect, I cannot risk it.

So for now, I am being authentic where I am safe. I dream of a day when we can all just be who we truly are without fear of consequences. When we can make mistakes and still be considered good, capable human beings.  When we can mess up and still love each other through it.

No matter who you are or where you are in your journey, I hope you know that there will always be one person who believes in you and your goodness and that is me. I know you’ve been through some shit but you’re still standing and fighting and you’re here. I am proud of you and I love you.  In case no one has told you that, you need to hear it and I want to be the one to tell you. The world may be full of people who don’t get it but look for us, the ones who do get it – we are waiting for you.  You are safe here.

And thank you to all of you who have kept me safe on this journey.