Getting sober was the hardest thing I have ever done in my entire life. Alcohol was my best friend; it got me through everything and anything. I though alcohol gave me courage, made me happy and created a life full of fun. But in reality, it made my life absolutely unmanageable and filled my heart with shame, guilt, fear and anger. Never the less, I could not imagine my life without it and for years I tried every way possible to manage it just so I didn't have to stop drinking.
My journey to sobriety was long and treacherous. From my first trouble which was a DUI (Driving While Under Influence - 0.24 BAC) to my last sobriety date, it took seven more years of drinking, at least a hand full of trips to detox, a week stay in a psychological hospital, five days in jail, six months of Alcohol and Drug classes, twenty months of out patient rehab and countless AA (Alcoholics Anonymous) meetings. I was so stubborn, I in complete denial. I just did not want to be an alcoholic. I did not want this to be my fate for the rest of my life.
I spent my scattered non-drinking days in the rooms of AA it was the only place that I felt safe from the drink. There, I found people who I would normally have nothing in common with, except for the desire to stop drinking. I saw that these people were getting sober and turning their lives around. They had jobs and families and homes; I wanted what they had. I kept coming back. The AA's become my friends, they cared for me when I had no idea how to care for myself. Little by little I got few glimpses of sobriety and happiness.
But it was still absolutely excruciating to admit that I was powerless over alcohol and that my life had become unmanageable! - (AA Step One) I mean, me powerless over alcohol? Ha! Not possible! But the truth was that when I put alcohol in my body I lost all control of what happened next! Sometimes I was ok, while other times I was in a complete blackout. THIS I had proven countless times.
The last time I drank, I had no idea that it was going to be my last time! At this point, I didn't make any more promises after my countless relapses. I started drinking on a Friday night, there was nothing wrong, I believed that I was happy. That's all I remember. When I came to it, it was Monday morning and I was on my kitchen floor, face down. My first thought was: Why am I on the floor? the second thought was: Is there any alcohol left? How insane! When I finally realized that I just lost an entire weekend in a blackout, a horrible fear come over me. What happened? OMG! what have I done, the house was a wreck and I was still wearing the same clothes I did on Friday. Ugh. I will never forget that feeling. Total desperation. The moment of absolute defeat. And then a thought: I either die a drunk or get sober.
I chose to get sober.
My life begun on April 15, 2008 when I made a decision to stop drinking and decided to change my life. I chose to put my faith in a Higher Power of my understanding, and to begin my sober journey. First, I remained sober, one day at a time; sometimes one hour or one minute at a time. Then, with the help of my AA sponsor, I begun going through the AA 12 Steps. The steps are designed to help clean our inner house so that we can be free of the shame and guilt brought on by our alcoholic drinking. The progress seemed slow but as the days started adding up, my life suddenly opened up, I was no longer alone, ashamed, or in pain.
In the last 5 amazing years my life has changed dramatically. I got a job. I went back to school. I got married. I bought a house. I had children. I have found true happiness and amazing freedom which I have never imagined that was possible when I was drinking. And I found me. And all of this, only because I got sober.
My journey has not ended, as I keep trudging along the sober road I keep growing, changing and still discovering the real me. The first few years, I learned how to stay sober. Now I am learning how to continue to live this amazing sober life!