5 Years Sober

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5 Years Sober

Postby Glad2BSober » Sat Mar 18, 2017 7:56 am

Hi Everyone,

It's my first time posting here and it might be selfish but I just had to tell someone who understands where I've been and where I am now that I'm 5 years sober today!

Here is my story, I hope it's not a trigger for anyone:
My rock bottom was 5 years and 1 day ago when I had started to "cut down" on drinking yet on a particular weekend when my then boyfriend, now husband, was out of town, I decided to drink like I used to before I started cutting down. I got a box of wine and a bottle of vodka for the the weekend which in the past would have just lasted me the weekend with a little vodka left over which is crazy considering I'm a very petite woman. I started drinking wine and taking shots on my own in my apartment that Friday when I got off work early at 2:30pm. I continued to drink until Saturday night. Once I awoke on Sunday, March 18th, I felt horrible. Worse than any hangover I had had before, I seriously thought I was going to die. I was only about 5 miles away from a hospital but knew I shouldn't drive. I knew my boyfriend had just gotten back from his trip and was 15 minutes away in the next town so I sheepishly called him for help and to take me to the ER. We hadn't even known each other for a year and I felt he had every right to just drop me off at the ER's doorstep but luckily he didn't. Though he was a little frustrated with the situation, which is to be expected, he came to pick me up and bring me to the ER. He stayed with me that day as I was in the ER and they hooked me up to an IV of fluids to help get the alcohol out of my system. He was there to hear when the ER doctor was very stern with me and told me that I had a problem, that I was an alcoholic, that it wasn't my fault because it runs in my family and that I had to stop drinking before I end up back in the ER to get my stomach pumped or worse. Though those were hard words to hear, I had known for years that having a bottle of wine a night and binging on the weekends wasn't ok. I knew she was right.

That day was a unseasonably warm March day for Minnesota and my boyfriend and I left the ER once I was feeling better and went for a walk and talked. I then went home and did something I never thought I could do, I poured out ALL of my alcohol. All of it. I didn't even keep any hidden stash, it all went down the drain. It hurt but felt so good at the same time. I lived alone and passed liquor stores on the way home from work daily. To combat that temptation, I decided that I would always drive to my boyfriend's house after work and stay there with him until after the liquor stores closed. I did this for at least 6 months. Luckily he was amazing about everything and has stuck with me through all of this. He came to AA meetings with me from time to time when I asked him to and always came to pin nights to speak on my behalf and present me with my pin. Soon after my ER incident I wrote that ER doctor a thank you letter for saving my life because that was the day I stopped drinking and took my life back in my own hands. I never expected to hear from her but a year or so ago she found me on Facebook and messaged me telling me how glad she was that she could help me and happy that I'm doing so well. It was amazing to hear from her and just writing about it brings tears to my eyes. I'm so fortunate with how things turned out.

Since I got sober I got married, lost 50 pounds and kept it off, bought a house with my husband in a different city which helped get away from old triggers though sadly there are several liquor stores in this city, had our first child, and have taken many other steps to get healthy including cutting out negative people from my life. Though I haven't been to an AA meeting in years because I just tend to use my husband as my support and stay away from alcohol whenever possible, it is still difficult at times when people talk about drinking in conversation, especially at work since I feel that should be a safe place especially since I work in an elementary school... It's also still difficult at times when I'm invited to functions that are at a bar or where most others are drinking in a restaurant but I'm able to make it through.

I'm very happy to be sober and so thankful for everyone who has helped me along the way. Thank you for reading my story, sorry it was long and hopefully it wasn't a trigger to anyone. I just really wanted to share.

Thank you and best wishes!!!
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Re: 5 Years Sober

Postby Brock » Sat Mar 18, 2017 10:34 am

Welcome to e-AA Glad2BSober. I found your story not just interesting, but really liked the way things turned out, the Doctor getting back in touch with you, the happy outcome for yourself and your husband, and of course your five years of sobriety, congratulations and well done.

I probably should just leave my reply at that, but I feel I would not be doing my duty as a recovered alcoholic if I did, please take anything I say as one alcoholic trying to help another, and not someone just being critical. Any trigger I got from this was one which says this is not the way AA is meant to work, and I got that mainly from statements like these - “...sadly there are several liquor stores in this city...I just tend to use my husband as my support... it is still difficult at times when people talk about drinking in conversation...others are drinking in a restaurant but I'm able to make it through.”

Now I am one of the few here who actually don't think meetings or sponsors are necessary for quality sobriety, most others insist that they are. I prefer to believe that steps 10, 11 & 12, keep me happily sober, especially #11 where I keep spirituality fit, and I do attend meetings once or twice a week to do that part of #12 which entails passing the message to others, something which can be done in forums like this as well. The thing is AA made promises in the big book, I believed them and they have come true in my life, from a hopeless alcoholic to a happy contented person. Part of those promises were that none of the feelings you describe would happen to me, and they don't, it's just not difficult at all, because as the book says the problem has been removed, it does not exist for me.

I assume you completed all of the steps, but as nicely as I can I am saying something is missing in your program, and apart from staying with forums like this and posting, I really think you should look into the program once again, this is not meant to be a struggle in any form.

Best of luck.
"Good morning, this is your Higher Power speaking. I will not be needing your help today."
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Re: 5 Years Sober

Postby Spirit Flower » Sat Mar 18, 2017 12:09 pm

Congrats!

(and what Brock said).
...a score card reading zero...
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Re: 5 Years Sober

Postby Noels » Sat Mar 18, 2017 12:49 pm

Hi Glad2BSober and welcome to e-aa! :D :D :D Thank you very much for your awesome share and congratulations on 5 years! Well done girl!!!

I do agree with Brock in that I don't crave alcohol at all. As a matter of fact, the thought of alcohol doesn't even enter my mind regardless of the situation or circumstances. I go to a meeting once a week so I can be with other people like me (alcoholics) and I really enjoy my weekly meeting :D Its almost like a weekly "treat" for me - "alkie's happy hour" :lol:

Congrats once again and definitely looking forward to hearing more from you :D

mwah xxx Noels
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Re: 5 Years Sober

Postby Glad2BSober » Sun Mar 19, 2017 4:22 am

Thank you for your congratulations and your insight.

Somehow I hadn't realized that feeling this way about alcohol shouldn't be happening by now if I were working the program right. I wouldn't say that I ever have a craving for it, I more so tend to get angry when I'm in it's presence or talk of it. For example, with St. Patty's day was on Friday and I was bitter at work whenever someone would bring up drinking. I know not to say anything in that regard since it seems most people I work with drink and I shouldn't judge others but I do tend to, especially mothers of young children who talk about drinking their problems away. I can't imagine drinking with my baby in my care. Even if I were someone who could just have a few drinks once in a while. I just don't feel it's right. But you're all right, that isn't healthy for me to have that bitterness or judge others. It's their own lives and not mine. I'm only responsible for myself, not them.

The AA group I was part of in the beginning of my journey was quite negative. It was a small group in a rather small community and there were a couple people there that would bring the whole group down. Being a young female in a group of mainly middle age or older men brought an odd dynamic as well. I didn't complete all the steps, I believe I only got to 8, before I decided that going to that particular AA group was possibly harming me more than helping due to the negativity and dwelling they tended to do. I heard from a man I worked with that had been to multiple groups and introduced me to that one, that not all groups are like that. Now that I've moved away from that city I honestly thought I was doing 'fine' and haven't found a group up here for the past three years. I realize this is probably wrong but I didn't want to 'bring the problem up here with me' to my new city. Where I lived before I would see people in the grocery store from AA and I'd always let them acknowledge me first if they wanted to and of course we didn't speak of AA but I didn't really even want that up in my new city where I'm raising my son. I don't want people to know that I'm an alcoholic. I assume though that if I have those feelings that is also unhealthy but that if I'm really concerned I could always go to another city for my meetings as I now am in a more densely populated area.

I realize there are a lot of things in my previous and current explanations of where I'm at that are not healthy now that I've read your comments but I wanted to explain further and also tell you that you're right and your thoughts have resinated with me.

Thank you for commenting that there is something missing in my program. I honestly didn't realize it. I need to find a meeting and get back to work.

Thank you.
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Re: 5 Years Sober

Postby avaneesh912 » Sun Mar 19, 2017 5:23 am

I need to find a meeting and get back to work.


There are some great workshops free on the internet. Youtube, xa-speakers are some of the resources. They explain the 12 steps in detail. What we really got to get over is our selfishness and self-centeredness. We straighten out mentally and physically. We have to be careful what we hear in meetings. Most people are sharing what they hear and what their sponsor told them so. Very few come from the basic text of Alcoholics Anonymous. And if you are a real-alcoholic, you may be seriously handicapped.
Show him, from your own experience, how the peculiar mental condition surrounding that first drink prevents normal functioning of the will power (Alcoholics Anonymous, Page 92)
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Re: 5 Years Sober

Postby tomsteve » Sun Mar 19, 2017 5:36 am

" I realize this is probably wrong but I didn't want to 'bring the problem up here with me' to my new city."

welcome to the group here!

don't know iffen ya know this, but theres great news- the problem is going to follow you wherever you go because the problem is you. its not the world and its people, which youre going to find everything you experienced in Podunk u.s.a. anywhere ya go.
wherever I go, there I am.

I got sober in pudunk u.s.a. ran into people in aa at the store quite often. not once was aa or recovery brought up then.
but then again, I have recovered from from alcoholism, which doesn't only mean alcohol no longer is a concern for me. it also means I am comfortable in my own skin. I no longer am concerned about what other people think of me. I no longer am trying to run the show and determine how other people should be acting. i am not living with untreated alcoholism- not acting and thinking the same way i did when i was drinking.

the programs pretty awesome. meetings are,too. if i go to a meeting lookin for negativity, ill find negativity. if i go lookin for resentments, ill find resentments.
if i go lookin for peace,serinity and recovery, i find recovery.
HOWEVER
meetings aren't how i recovered.
that happened by working the program.
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Re: 5 Years Sober

Postby Noels » Sun Mar 19, 2017 9:13 am

I realize this is probably wrong but I didn't want to 'bring the problem up here with me' to my new city.

Its not wrong Glad, you just didn't know better until now :D Its all about how we choose to look at alcoholism. I prefer to look at being an alcoholic as an immense blessing which I embrace. If I wasn't an alcoholic I firstly would never have met the awesome people at my home group or on this site. If I wasn't an alcoholic I may not have had the spiritual progression which ive had to date. If I wasn't an alcoholic I would still have looked down on alcoholics and drug users simply because what I don't experience myself I can never possibly understand.

So I am a grateful, happy, joyous and free alcoholic in recovery. THAT'S where the difference comes in. You are no longer just an alcoholic. You are an alcoholic who knows and practice the solution. :D

Your group await you so forward all the way :D

mwah xxx
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Re: 5 Years Sober

Postby ezdzit247 » Sun Mar 19, 2017 2:33 pm

Hi Glad. Welcome and congratulations on 5 years sober!

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“To laugh often and much; to win the respect of intelligent people and the affection of children...to leave the world a better place...to know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived. This is to have succeeded.” -- Ralph Waldo Emerson
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Re: 5 Years Sober

Postby positrac » Tue Mar 21, 2017 2:36 am

Well done and keep those B-days coming ok! 5 years is a huge milestone as it can be a struggle at times just when you think you have it figured out and bang you get side tracked and these challenges are good and can be healthy reminders of our life without alcohol. Keep this in mind as resting on our laurels is not good for our recovery.

have a great day and seize the day.
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