As I sit here today on my second day of sobriety, I cannot help but wonder, “Where did my life go?” From my first drink at 14 to my last at 44, I have never felt so ashamed, scared, alone, and angry as I do today. The shame comes in the pure fact that I knew better than to end up like this. My God, my own mom was a drug and alcohol counselor; my father, a raging alcoholic. I knew all the statistics, the odds, the genetics, the pain. Yet, I still chose to give the majority of 30 years to an addiction that has nearly destroyed all I ever thought I might care about.
Yes, I have my home, my husband, my kids, my job. So what then am I complaining about losing? How about self-esteem, dignity, self pride and self-care? I can put myself down faster than the elevator in the Willis Building, and I often do at my own expense before someone beats me to it.
My life has become a series of lies, deception, and secrets. Oh the shame. How many times can I hide the alcohol? How often do I have to chew gum or brush my teeth so no one will smell the alcohol? But more often than not, I sit at work and think about how soon I can get home and have a drink. Who do I need to drop off at what activity so I am sober, but how soon can I get home to drink alone? I look like the perfect wife because I never complain when my husband has to work late. The truth is that just means he won’t be around to see me get drunk or to know how much I am drinking.
I am not the one to go to work Happy Hours not because I am unsocial. No. I am the life of the party. The truth is I don’t want to have to drive home drunk. The risk is too high. No, better to get shitfaced at home in front of my kids than to risk my coworkers see me do it.
But, today. I am sober. I am scared, but I am sober.