Sunday April 3rd, 2016
A little over 2 years ago, I started wondering if I was becoming an alcoholic. I had transitioned from weekend binges to daily drinking. I had switched from running to train for marathons (a healthy choice) to marathon drinking for a quick anxiety fix. I drank more and more to relieve the ever increasing stress in my life. When negative consequences began occurring, I started the search for help. I read dozens of books and articles on the subject of addiction, tried a few self-help groups, started listening to recovery podcasts, saw an addiction counselor, participated in a weekly group therapy session, etc. I had periods of sobriety, relapse, and then try a different recovery approach.
And then, a little over 6 months ago, I finally hit my rock bottom. I fell asleep while driving and woke up as my car was rolling over. Dangling upside down with my seatbelt securing me from falling, I stared at the rock asphalt road beneath me and had a spiritual awakening. This truly was my rock bottom; I saw it literally and figuratively. I was blessed to be still alive and not injure anyone else. I prayed almost non-stop for days. Two weeks later I entered a partial hospitalization treatment program with the dual diagnosis of alcoholism and depression + anxiety. It involved a month of group therapy and educational classes, living in an apartment with other women of the program, anti-anxiety medication and attending nightly AA, CA or NA meetings. Although I missed my family and pets, I knew that I needed to be there and I soaked up every bit of information offered. I was both excited and scared about returning home at the end of October 2015. Could I keep implementing all that I learned without structured supervision? I had to.
Six and a half months later, I’ve gained 30 pounds in addition to a stronger faith and a network of sober women. I have an AA sponsor, have made amends (9th step) to the most important people in my life and I’m regularly taking anti-anxiety medication that helps take the edge off the stress-meter. Now its time to kick recovery up a notch and improve my eating and exercise routines.
Since I haven’t replaced my car yet, my daughter suggested that I get a beach cruiser type bike with a basket that I could use to ride to the grocery store, library, gym, etc. Because the basket is small, it would mean I’ll have to plan my shopping trips more closely and make more frequent trips to the store than I have been. And more trips to the store on a bike to get fresh produce will improve my health too.
I’ve been thinking about starting a recovery blog for six months now, but didn’t want to jinx it by starting it immediately into recovery. Now I feel like I have a base of recovery laid and its time for me to start sharing in the hope that it will help at least one other person out there that is struggling with addiction. Never give up!
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