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Old 10-15-2009, 04:45 PM   #1 (permalink)
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It took me over two years


July 2007 was my 43rd birthday. I went out with a group of girlfriends to a nice restaurant. We had dinner and wine... lots of wine. I woke up the next morning with a horrible hangover, counted how many bottles we ordered, counted the number of people who were drinking, and with horror, realized that I had finished off a full bottle of wine, at least. I got through my hangover and kind of laughed it off as a "once in a while kind of thing."

In the fall of 2007, my husband and I separated. He moved out (long story, not for here). Then I had a breakup with a serious boyfriend. I started drinking to fill the void. I went out with friends who drank and we really got into wine. We would go to Costco in Virginia and stock up on cases of wine to have at home -- good wine at good prices! I began drinking wine regularly at home and was having my own private happy hours.

Pretty soon I was drinking either every night or every other and unable to stop at 1/2 bottle. I was hungover a lot. Other bad things started happening. I would get into fights with friends more. I was disorganized. I couldn't make it to everything I would plan. I couldn't get everything done.

This went on for a while and in November 2008 I realized I had a serious problem. I spoke to a good friend about it and to my ex-husband, basically asking for help. I remember calling an AA hotline one morning when I was horribly hungover. A very nice man on the phone line reassured me and said, "It's going to be okay." I remember how that made me feel -- not so alone. I did go to one meeting. The people were great. However, I could not yet bring myself to say, "Hi I'm Laura and I'm an alcoholic." Not yet. So I never went to another meeting.

I bought some books on how to moderate drinking, how to stop drinking, etc. I spent a lot of money on hypnosis CDs that were supposed to make drinking seem horrible. Everything worked a little a bit for a little while. I kept drinking journals, notes, etc. in a effort to get things under control

Around June 2009, I became desperate again. I did a google search and found this website and joined. You all know me from that point forward. I have gone through a lot of phases on here, have been a pain in the ass at times, tried moderating again, have been sober for stretches as long as 10 days and got out of the cycle of daily drinking.

A couple of weeks ago I got drunk on about a bottle of wine, fell flat on the ground and hit my head really hard. I had a bump on my forehead and a bruise that lasted weeks (and a horrible purple and black eye). I had to explain to people that I tripped, .... yeah right. Nobody is that clumsy. I was scared that I actually could have killed myself. But I still kept drinking... for a little while longer. I took Kudzu the herb. I was able to drink 1-2 drinks for a few times in a row and thought I was "cured."

On Tuesday this week I went to the wine store and picked out a really nice bottle of Chardonnay thinking I could control it and stop at 2 glasses. I went over the halfway line in the bottle and was pretty upset when I saw that I was not able to stick to my plan. I went to bed, had the most horrible night's sleep -- lonely and sick and miserable. I actually prayed to God to help me get out of this. And this is significant because I'm not religious and hardly ever pray.

I was hungover on Wednesday, but got up, dumped out the rest of the wine (I drank about 3/4 of the bottle), got showered and made my way to an AA meeting. I was nervous and skeptical at first. But I stayed and listened. Everything everyone said made perfect sense. By the end I knew I had found the answer --- that I am an alcoholic and I belong at those meetings with all those people.

So here I am - I will continue going to AA and will not drink. I had what I feel is a "spiritual awakening." I used to not understand that. But I asked for help, from someone above, and I got it. It's all there -- the people are out there waiting to help us. There are meetings everyday, several a day in every city around where I live and work. It was all there this whole time and I ignored it. Because I didn't think I was an alcoholic.

So I just wanted to say thanks to you all at SR for putting up me while I figured this out. Thanks for letting me stick around. I feel fantastic, free and wonderful. I had the best day at work today. I was energetic, focused and able to concentrate like I haven't been able to in years. I can't explain it. A huge burden has been lifted and I don't have to fight this anymore.

Thanks.....

Laura
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Old 10-15-2009, 04:53 PM   #2 (permalink)
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thanks for this post laura!!! you have come a long way since when I would argue with you about how moderation wasnt the smartest thing for you to attempt (months ago lol). Glad to see you growing emotionally and taking responsibility for your disease and learning how to fix it.

Hope to hear more from you soon ~~ Scott
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Old 10-15-2009, 05:14 PM   #3 (permalink)
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I am glad to hear you are on your way to a life of sobriety! It is so worth it!

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Old 10-15-2009, 05:15 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Thanks for the post.... I know of no one who really needs to not drink who quit on the first try. Humbly on day 79 this time. To me it seems
that sustained sobriety and quality of life are contingent upon some sort of conversion experience. For some it happens with fire and brimstone, others over a period of time, and yet others as a combination (a sort of finding god and struggling with your faith kinda thing). Best of luck. Just take it day to day and you'll be
fine! Support is here.
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Old 10-15-2009, 05:25 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Old 10-15-2009, 06:05 PM   #6 (permalink)
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TJ--

Thanks for sharing your journey, and your progress.

It sounds like you have an acceptance, awareness, and peace about your decision to be sober.

Congrats to you TJ....

Peace
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Old 10-15-2009, 06:25 PM   #7 (permalink)
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I am happy for you!
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Old 10-15-2009, 07:08 PM   #8 (permalink)
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((((Laura)))) Good for you!
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Old 10-15-2009, 07:13 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Laura! How wonderful for you!

I think you will find that trying to moderate you end up thinking about drinking all of the time. After some sobriety...you don't think about alcohol, at all. Or, if you do....you can let it go.
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Old 10-16-2009, 12:57 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Hey Laura, that's great news!

Just offering a couple of thoughts...

You mentioned the amount you drank and that you fell over one night...well i got into a pattern in the last years of drinking 2 bottles a night, several beers and a few large bacardis but i have no stories of falling over...ever...sure there was embarassing stuff...point is it isn't how much you drank or how long you drank for but how it has been affecting your life. You may hear stories of people drinking 24/7, 2 litres of spirits daily and the old well i'm not as bad as that may creep in...just to remind you that you are as bad as that because you fell on your ass and could have cracked your skull open! I guess you have already seen that the feelings are the same regardless of amount and frequency, this holds true for all addicitions.

Also you will want to look to get a sponsor and work through the steps as soon as you can, this is because whilst you are close to your last drunk and the pain is still fresh in your mind you have motivation and the willingness to make necessary changes...the further you get away from it the less you will deem the actual program necessary.

Easier to explain in person but if you keep going back and ask for help, you will get it...anyways hope to hear more about your journey here on SR:-)

cliff

ps no new boyfriends for a while hey, keep it simple and work on yourself for a bit hehe;-)
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Old 10-16-2009, 01:34 AM   #11 (permalink)
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Quote:
A huge burden has been lifted and I don't have to fight this anymore.
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Old 10-16-2009, 02:11 AM   #12 (permalink)
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Wow Laura you have come such a long way So happy for you that you are doing well & feeling good.

Please keep close & keep sharing your story, its inspirational. We are with you on this journey. :ghug3

Take Care,

NB
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Old 10-16-2009, 02:29 AM   #13 (permalink)
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(((Laura))) so it took you 2 years...

You know what you want now, though, right? It maybe had to be proven to you--trust me I understand that one--but you seem to have a clear picture of what you want now. You know I wish you the best of luck on this journey...
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Old 10-16-2009, 03:00 AM   #14 (permalink)
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Well done on your decision Laura. Best wishes
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Old 10-16-2009, 03:40 AM   #15 (permalink)
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Old 10-16-2009, 04:07 AM   #16 (permalink)
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Congrats, Laura! I am very happy for you.
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Old 10-16-2009, 05:24 AM   #17 (permalink)
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"putting up with me", LOL!!!! Laura, it is so good to see you here. Welcome back Mama!!! Thanks for the share. :ghug3
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Old 10-16-2009, 05:32 AM   #18 (permalink)
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well done laura for sharing your story.. very brave! i have yet to do it
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Old 10-16-2009, 05:39 AM   #19 (permalink)
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Hi Laura, Remember how good you feel now and how positive your future right now seems as your mind comprehends a future without the thing that has been holding it back and taking it back to square 1 time and time again ie- alcohol.

Total acceptance of being an alcoholic, and that it is the first drink that is the one that kills you, is a must to have any chance of remaining sober IMHO. By accepting this wholeheartably and accepting that drinking must never be an option for you means that you stand a fighting chance. Sounds like you have realised this too, which is great for your sobriety.

I wish you all the best in your 'journey'.

Peace and Love xxx
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Old 10-16-2009, 06:44 AM   #20 (permalink)
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Thanks soooooo much for your support!!! This online support has "kept me in the game" and really helped me to get to where I am today. AA is going to be critical in order to stay where I want to be.

I think I am a good example of "it's not how much you drink, it's how it affects your life." Sometimes when I told people how much I drank, they'd compare it to themselves and say, "You really don't have much of a problem." Then I'd start thinking... hmmm... maybe I really DON'T have a problem! And I'd start the cycle all over again.

I think only I truly know the depths of despair I had when I drank (and other alkies can relate). It's not the amount, Yeahgr8... you are right!

Thank you, again!!!
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