Who me?

learning to see myself clearly

Barbers, haircuts and places we always went…

I miss having a place to go where I can find a friendly face anytime.  Why are there no alcohol-free places like that around here?

I’m on day 49 and last night for the third time since I quit drinking, I stopped at the restaurant closest to home for a bite to eat.  Of course it is also the scene of a lot of my drinking.  I know it’s a bad idea.  I’ve heard the admonition:  if you keep going to the barbershop, eventually you’ll get a haircut.  The other two times, I went in early, got food and left.  I saw a couple of friends, had a cup of tea and felt very relaxed about it all.

Last night was different.

I knew it at the time.  I was on my way home from yoga and I was hungry.  Since I live alone in cold, snowy, dark New England, going home means walking into a dark 60 degree house needing to light a fire in the wood-stove and take three dogs out.  Last night the firewood was beneath a foot of snow, the driveway was beneath a few inches of ice and I couldn’t remember anything in the fridge that I could eat without making it a project.  Already feeling defeated, I opted for letting someone else feed me.

Since it was 8:30 when I arrived, the bar was well inhabited.  I knew everyone.  I sat down ordered tea and dinner, and for the first time, I felt completely out of place.  There was nothing right about it.  I was feeling good after my class and without the haze of some quickly consumed cocktails, the group looked largely sad and I didn’t want to be part of it.

It was as though I walked into the proverbial barbershop, but I could see the bad haircuts and I knew that I  never want what they have again.

The best advice I have received since becoming sober is to find people who have what I want and stay close and pay attention.  I did that.  I found a group of really positive women.  I figured out what meetings they go to.  One of them agreed to be my sponsor.  I will stick with them and remember that the old places and many of the old people just don’t have the life I want.

49 days sober and feeling very grateful

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Finding a community…

duckling fitting in

 

I never felt like I fit in…anywhere.  I always felt different.  I suppose that is the thing that many of us have in common.  Somewhere along the line drinking became a way to feel like I fit in, to try to be the fun girl everyone would like and in the end it was what isolated me.

alone

Imagine my surprise when I began to post to this blog and I found a community of people with the same struggles.  I could read about their thoughts and feel less alone.  When I wrote, you responded and I felt less alone.  I found my way to the halls of AA and again, found people who are warm and welcoming.  After only a few days, I no longer felt like an outsider, I knew I belonged.

I am beginning to realize that, after a life of being a chameleon, my greatest challenge moving forward may be staying true to myself.  I am starting to see that I need to be a bit more careful about how I spend my time; it’s precious.  I need to find a way to nurture relationships that are good for me.  The relationships that have a negative tone need to change or I need to let go.  This is for my survival.

This part of my life has to be about learning who I am and being comfortable and happy with myself.

Its-Never-Too-Late-To-Be-What-You-Might-Have-Been

 

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