Wednesday, March 20, 2019

Love will conquer all...

Oh my goodness it has been a loooooooong time since I wrote on this my trusty old blog. Apologies trusty old blog and anyone who might still be visiting here despite my absence. Or, if you subscribe to my posts by email, wondering where the hell I've been ... sorry to you too.

I have been around and I am still very visible on my social media accounts and of course Living Sober where I communicate in the Members Feed many times a week and also publish lots of posts.

Things aren't great here right now with a beloved family member being terminally ill and a terrible, awful, horrific terror attack in my home town of Christchurch. It feels like just such a hard time right now and I am very unsettled by all the emotions and sadness and pain.

BUT none of it is enough to send me back to stupid alcohol of course! No way am I ever touching that shit again! Rather I am stepping up my self-care, listening to lovely Tara Brach talks, doing yoga, walking the dog, crying, buying flowers and facemasks and magazines and treaty herbal teas, looking for the beauty in nature. It all sounds so wah, wah, woofty, namby, pamby but if there's one thing I've learned in my 7 1/2 years of being sober... it is that it is PRECISELY these sorts of gentle nurturing actions that soothe my way through emotional pain.

And of course I feel very connected with my feelings which is actually super lovely. It makes perfect sense that I'd be sad and grieving now and anxious and unsettled. PERFECT sense. My goodness. Major, major tough things are happening in my world. Of course I'm going to be uncomfortable and emotional! But I'm feeling the feelings fully, letting them out and pass through me. I know that in six months.. one year.. I'll look back at this tough time and won't feel confused about or disconnected from it.

I know now from 7 1/2 years of sobriety that tough emotions are there for a reason and simply feeling them fully and not seeking to numb or avoid them makes them easier to manage. And especially in the long run when more beats of life have occurred.. they're easier to understand.

But for now, despite all my self-care techniques I'm still incredibly watery with tears popping up at unexpected times. And I am aware that I've got a knot of angsty pressure on my chest. But I'm breathing through it.. remembering to practice mindfulness and ground myself in my body and not get lost in my (unhappy) thoughts.

And the main one of all - hugging the ones I love very, very tight. Because love will conquer all.

Love, Mrs D xxx

Wednesday, December 19, 2018

Make mine a booze free Christmas

Heading into Christmas like HELL YEAH! We pack up the car on Friday night and catch a 3am ferry to the South Island on Saturday. Yikes, what were we thinking when we booked that back in July?! But it's ok, we'll cope. Not drinking sure makes travel easier!

Things are good in the D household. The kids are looking forward to getting away, Mr D is on holiday after a busy year at work (he travelled away every single weekend this year), and I am just pottering along doing my usual online stuff which will continue while we are away. I'm very excited because I've got a new book project to work on next year. I do love having a project on.. keeps my mind occupied and me stimulated and busy.

We relaunched Living Sober a month or so ago and that went really well. We now have a fancy new online space for our members to hang out in.. but fundamentally it's the same kind, supportive, non-judgemental site that it always was. Just a better way of displaying posts and a clearer 'call to action' for new visitors on the homepage (hopefully encouraging them to join our community)... alongside a pretty cheesy but friendly welcome video featuring moi. I published a Silly Season Survival Guide there which would be worthwhile reading if you're struggling with sobriety at the moment.

In other news I am totally on top of my food and sitting 15kg (33 pounds) lighter thanks to Bright Line Eating which I have blogged about here before. I stumbled across it a year or so ago after listening to the women who runs it - Dr Susan Peirce Thompson - speak during an online conference. She’s a recovering addict herself and listening to her was amazing because it was the first time someone totally spoke my language about food (because there’s a LOT of noise about food out there right now).

Her thing is she's all about the addictive properties of food - particularly flour and sugar - and how it impacts on your brain (dopamine receptors etc). Made total sense to me because after I got sober I developed a nasty sugar habit. It's a pretty strict programme but I’m unashamed about following it now because it honestly has changed my life. When I’m 100% sticking to my bright lines (which I don't always achieve but am right now) I am free of any obsession over food, binging, guilt etc. I just feel calm in my body and mind, it's amazing. She’s just released a free video series check it out here if you're interested (it's only going to be up for a short amount of time).

Sometimes I can't believe how things have changed for me, but at 47 years old I'm delighted to be working hard at being the best I can be.. and not just settling for being the kind of lush, mindless woman that I was before. I feel like I've only got one shot at my life, and I'm happy to be doing it as I am. Sobriety is TOTALLY worth the hard work people! So just do it! (to use a well-worn, cheesy slogan).

I mean, crap still comes along but it's easier to deal with when you're not clouding your brain with booze. Trust me on that.

Love, Mrs D xxx


Friday, October 26, 2018

Milestones...

Had some lovely celebrations recently. My 47th birthday was a couple of weeks ago and yesterday Mr D and I marked 15 years of marriage!

I get through these celebrations without a single thought of reaching for alcohol - so rock solid is my sobriety. My life is just trucking on fine without booze in the picture and for that I am SO SO SO happy and also so grateful to past me for making the big, brave move 7+ years ago.

I'm not visiting here so much any more but I do write blog posts regularly at www.livingsober.org.nz. Our incredible recovery community is going from strength to strength and soon we are relaunching with a whole new look!

I also post regularly on Facebook and Instagram. And also on Twitter.

Hopefully see you there!

Love, Mrs D xxx 


Thursday, September 6, 2018

Seven years today!!

Happy Soberversary to me! Happy Soberversary to me! Happy Soberversary to me! Happy Soberversary to me! Seven years today!! Woo bloody Hoo.

That is 2557 days by the way - crazy!

Waking up this morning with the memory of having yelled at my kids last night because one of them pissed all over the toilet floor - whoopsie! Grumpy mum alert. But at least it was sober yelling not drunken yelling! Unlike last night 7 years ago when I was totally full of wine and an utter wreck on the inside.

So anyway.. what to do on my soberversary? I have to take the car into town to get fixed so thought I might walk myself to the movies after that and go see Crazy Rich Asians which is apparently great. Then maybe get some food in a cafe.. then bus home and do other normal stuff like walk the dog and go to the supermarket and pick up the kids from school and make dinner and stuff.... such is the life of a sober housewife. Yay for being a sober housewife!!

Thank you me of 7 years ago for digging deep even when you were feeling miserable and making such a monumental life-changing decision.

Thank you me of 7 years ago for pushing through the hard-as-buggery early stages of getting sober. Learning how to socialise, filling my days, getting through wine o-clock, and the hardest work of all - retraining my brain to stop seeing booze as a good idea. Thank you!

And thank you me for every one of the last 2557 days for being brave enough to deal with emotional stuff and not seek to escape or numb. I am so proud of myself that I have committed to living 100% of the time in the raw. It is a fantastic, grounded, brave, real, honest way to live. And I love it!

No regrets! Sobriety is my new normal and I'm so happy with that. Happy Seven Years to me! Can't wait for the next seven.

Love, Mrs D xxx


Monday, August 20, 2018

Ain't that the truth.

Monday morning and I have just decluttered our downstairs room which was a mess with old CDs everywhere, kids dress-ups, various tools and bits of sporting equipment, swim gear, school art projects, old DVDs.. you get the picture.

I love decluttering!

And this is just the first area of the house that I'm going to deal with. Every day this week I'm going to do a different area which has gotten dusty and crappy and messy. Satisfying.

I've finished my 3-month work contract so now have more time on my hands to get on top of the house, plus get back to the gym and start walking the dog daily again and stuff like that. I let my self-care and some houseewifey jobs slip a bit while I was a busy working mum juggling two jobs and everything else.

But that's over for now - until the next contract comes along at least. And until it does I'm going to enjoy having a bit more time to potter about and get organised and look after myself and the family.

Been a bit of angst around lately as well with some stuff going on (out of my control but worrisome and stressful) but I've been coping with that fairly well. It's interesting for me to note that nowadays in the midst of a crisis I don't for a second hanker for a wine or wish that I could bend my brain with a drug to escape. I just deal with life as it comes - sometimes messily with tears or anger or sugar - but deal with it nonetheless and trust myself that I will cope.

And I always do.

I've taught myself now after nearly 7 years of sobriety that I can handle my emotions, that they're not to be feared or judged or avoided.. they are just emotions. Sadness, anger, worry, frustration, stress.. they're all there for a reason. It's how us humans are made! And I'm very happy to be a fully realised human riding the waves of life as best I can.

Most of all I'm happy to be showing my sons a mum who is well rounded, not perfect by any stretch of the imagination, but just dealing with life on life's terms. They can see me up, down and sideways and circling around again. And they will learn by watching me that this is how life goes.

It's not what happens to you, it's how you deal with what's happening to you that counts.

Ain't that the truth.

Love, Mrs D xxx