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

Monday, July 23, 2018

Slice of life (and lemon)

It's 4.27pm on a Monday afternoon. I'm sitting at the kitchen bench drinking from a glass filled with fizzy water and a big slice of lemon. I've just made tomorrow night's dinner (chicken fajitas) and soon will embark on tonight's dinner (fish and veggies parcels). The Greatest Showman soundtrack is playing loudly which is cheesy as hell but fun to sing to. The dog is prowling around the kitchen looking for scraps of food. Now he's given up and is lying on the rug. 

Eldest son (nearly 14) is sitting at his PC in the study watching YouTube and surfing Instagram on his phone at the same time. Youngest son (8) is playing Arc on the PlayStation in the TV room. Middle son (12) is at his swim training. He'll need to be picked up in an hour or so.

I'm feeling pretty tired as I'm working two jobs right now while still running the house and kids etc. And it's been a busy weekend. I hosted a birthday party sleepover for our middle son and 3 of his friends and also had my mum staying. Also, because I'm tired my food choices haven't been great lately and I'm a bit frustrated that the house is a dusty, cluttered mess. But none of this is terrible and I know that everything is elevated because I'm tired. 

So I'm practicing mindfulness - focusing on what my hands are doing and what is before my eyes - rather than getting lost in negative thought patterns. And I'm being kind to myself, accepting that life is up and down, trusting that I'll pick myself up again and congratulating myself for being grounded and aware.

I think it's important right now that I remember what a fucking legend I am for being sober. Excuse me for blowing my own trumpet but sometimes being in long term recovery means I forget to celebrate the turn my life has taken and the improvements I have made to my world - both internal and external.

Because this picture could be quite different. I could be 2 wines deep right now, slightly buzzed and disconnected. I could be hungover from the weekend and struggling every day with an intense internal dialogue about my drinking. I could be regretting things I've done or said recently while under the influence.  I could be fighting with my husband or other relatives, or dealing with angsty friendships. But none of this is my reality.

My reality is tiredness, emotions, awareness, gratitude and a big glass of fizzy water with a large slice of lemon. Perfection, really.

Love, Mrs D xxx

Friday, June 29, 2018

Self-care while being busy

Well! Be careful what you wish for. After spending quite a few weeks moaning about how bored and underutilised I was feeling...about how my confidence was low because I hadn't worked outside of the house (like, in an actual office with other people and stuff) for over 8 years.. about how I needed to get a job but didn't know what I wanted to do... well... I went and got a job!

It's a nice re-entry into the workforce.. a part-time, temporary contract (26 hours a week for 3 months). Doing writing and communications stuff for a big health organisation. So it's using my skills but also teaching me new things.. and now all my bored and insecure complaints have flown out the window and BAM! I'm super busy.

I'm getting up and out of the house four mornings a week and driving into a busy workplace. I've had a shit-ton to learn, my brain is full of a million details. I've been stressed, stimulated, frustrated, satisfied.. but most of all - busy!

It's been great on many levels. I've reminded myself that I'm capable and hard-working and efficient and have a lot to offer. And I've reminded myself that I work well with others and enjoy meeting new people.

But it's also been a big adjustment in terms of my schedule, demands on my time, tiredness levels and self care. Suddenly I'm that person who is juggling a million things and feeling rushed a lot of the time. The meals at home aren't quite up to the same standard. Emails are taking a bit longer to respond to and some of my writing deadlines are being pushed out.

It's quite good actually because I'm being reminded that it does take more of an effort to look after yourself and make good choices when you're stretched. When you're super-busy it's easier to just grab that quick snack that isn't fully healthy, rather than take the time to chop some veggies. It's easier to skip your yoga class because you are tired.

My sobriety is rock-solid, but some of my addictive behaviours around food have crept back in. But it's ok.. I'm very aware of this and am 1) first and foremost and most importantly treating myself with great compassion and kindness, recognising that I am tired and busy and a human being with flaws and all of that is ok and understandable and 2) trying hard to keep a focus on good self-care routines knowing that although they take more effort when you're tired.. they are worth it!

It helps that I have an end date for this contract so can push through knowing that I'll be back to a more cruisey routine soon enough. But then of course I'll probably start complaining about being bored again and worrying about what job I'm going to do! Ha ha. Hopefully soon enough - in the next year or two - I'll find the perfect thing that will keep me stimulated and busy (but not too busy) and allow me to look after myself and my family as well.

Life is a journey with twists and turns! And I'm happily bumping along for the ride. One sober foot in front of the other.. facing each day with a clear head and honest intention. And that's all any of us can do.

Love, Mrs D xxx