Saturday, March 6, 2010

Saving Myself

**Submitted by seekingclarav

Like most major decisions in my life, my decision to get sober was quick and rash. I was in bed enjoying some me time during my daughter's nap and I began reading a blog that a friend had recommended to me. As I scrolled through and read some comments, I was shocked scared. Comments from women who were just like me, only they were brave enough to admit it. Alcoholic mothers trying to stay afloat in a life boat because somewhere along the way our ships had gone down and we were drifting away before we even knew what was happening. Disgusted with myself and the truth that I was terrified to admit, because I knew what that would mean, I made the choice to stop, right then. I got up, walked to the bathroom sink, poured out my wine and rinsed the glass. That was on December 26th, 2009. I haven't had a sip since.

I would be lying if I said I didn't want to drink, everyday, because I do. I just don't do it. Somehow I get through it. I'm hoping soon it won't be so shocking to my soul. I'm hoping that the feeling of breathless that washes over me when I think of the term "never again" will subside. I'm hoping the feelings of jealousy I have for the woman at the table next to me, casually sipping a glass of red, will diminish. But who's to say she's not totally freaked out that the bottle is almost empty and they haven't gotten their entrees yet? Because that was me. I can't tell. No one can.

I grew up in an alcoholic home. I have been saturated with both the shame and the reality of it for as long as I can remember. Now, it will be my reality for the rest of my life. I am determined to make it a positive reality. I will not be sad about this forever. I will do whatever I have to do to move into a place of peace about this change. This change for the better. Sobriety is opening up doors inside myself that I have never known. I have consciously kept some of these doors shut, with alcohol, because I knew what was behind them. But the hinges have worn out, they won't stay closed anymore. And it's hard. And some days no one understands. And some days I wish I weren't like this. Then there are the moments when I think I am going to burst because I feel so proud of what I am doing.

I realized this past Wednesday night that I can't do this alone. I had a drinking dream that stuck with me all day and the only thing I could think of was getting to a meeting. I needed that room full of relative strangers that I am growing deeply fond of. It was an incredible meeting. I found out that my favorite AA friend is open to being a sponsor. I just have to work up the nerve to ask. I need you. Can you help me find my way through? This is huge for me. I don't ask for help.

I will never forget the day when I called my Dad to pick me up at my friend's house, only to look down the street half an hour later to find him sitting in his car, in the wrong driveway, a few houses down. I will never forget how he drove me home that afternoon swerving into the wrong lane, repeatedly. I will never forget the sound of my own little girl voice yelling at him. Are you trying to kill me, Dad? Hot, salty tears streaming down my face.

I don't blame him. I don't blame anyone. Not even myself. If this is what is meant to be for my life then so be it. This is something that cannot be changed, no matter how hard I try. I just have to do the work and come to terms with it so I can feel the happiness and freedom that I deserve. So I can enjoy all the little moments that life is full of, and remember them clearly, and with meaning. I am excited that my daughter will never have a memory of me holding a drink. That she will never see the different me's. That I saved myself in time. I saved myself. That feels really good to say.

My name is Clara, and I am an alcoholic.


  1. Thank you so much for this - you're so brave... this gives me hope, it really does.

  2. Beautiful post Clara! I'm so proud for you, and so happy that you have found a good friend to be your sponsor. You are on a great path.

  3. You did it :) You are a brave, incredible woman. You've taken the biggest step. Revel in the joy of that for a bit.

  4. Clara ~ I grew up in an alcoholic home, too. Wouldn't you think that would be enough to keep us from having one, too? We have finally had enough. I am working on embracing the chaos and imperfection of my home. I hope you are, too.

  5. Thanks's quite a journey we are on.

    I am working on embracing the chaos...tired of trying to fight it. There are worse things.

  6. Clara, your doing wonderful. My date was Dec 20, 2009. On March 1, 2010 I let the power of chaos take over and I downed some wine. I drank it "shotgun" style. Right after I did it I had this horrible feeling. I knew. I knew! I ran to the bathroom and forced myself to throw up.
    I should of just gone to a meeting.

  7. You are such an inspiration. Thank you for sharing your story...I see myself in your words. Not wanting to admit, being terrified of the truth. I admire you for asking for help.

  8. Clara-

    I too grew up in an alcoholic home. My last drink was Dec 16, 2008. I poured gin into my sobe drink. I hated gin, it tasted like Christmas trees. But it was the bottle I could steal from my mother in law's house.

    I am so grateful to have found this site!