What life has taught me since then is that:
- stress is temporary; the only thing that is consistent is change itself
- one drink leads to another; my relapse was last September and I have not gone more than two weeks alcohol free since then
- giving up booze has nothing to do with strength, willpower or perseverance and everything to do with allowing yourself to be vulnerable, authentic and real
- there is no 'good time' to quit; now is the time
- the amount I drink does not matter; it's the amount of time spent thinking about booze that matters (and it's all I think about)
Today I made a phone call to a cyber-friend who graciously allowed me to contact her. She has been very supportive and has kept in touch with me even when I have buried my head in the sand as I tend to do. I have never reached out to anyone before about my drinking. Speaking with her gave me a feeling of hope. She told me I was of value and wise and she was sincere; I could tell. While I struggle with the idea of being worthy of such compliments, her words softened my self-loathing and soothed my aching psyche. She started her sober journey at the same time I commenced my 138 day marathon and she has managed to stay sober. I admire her for her commitment to helping those of us who have not been successful and her unwavering compassion as we stumble along stopping and starting our sober stints. Thank you Ginger.
Yesterday I toasted myself with my last drink. I have kept the empty glass and have it displayed as a reminder of the day I stopped trying to change and finally became the change I wished to see in myself. This is it! It's over! Where I go from here is where I truly want to be!