Then and now

Christmas Eve 2011 – I check my bank account balance on my phone before the liquor store closes early. I have about $11. Should I get a pint of whiskey or brandy? What if that’s not enough? It needs to last for two days until the liquor store opens again. Maybe wine, which is totally appropriate to drink at home on Christmas eve while opening presents with the family. One bottle for sure won’t be enough, but I don’t have enough money for two. I’ll go with the cheap wine in a 1.5 litre bottle for $9.99. As I pay for my purchase I’m acutely aware that I’m a slave to this bottle. I wonder if the clerk knows. Don’t be silly – it’s totally normal to buy a big bottle of wine on December 24. I walk out, clutching that big bottle in a paper bag, feeling ashamed. That night, I drink alone as I sit with my husband and son.

Christmas Eve 2014 – I’m not thinking about my bank account or liquor store hours. I’ve got some extra money from a little sober hobby I started. Some of that money I’ve used to buy a gift for a special friend. I was assigned this year to be JJ’s recovery coach, and our relationship has blossomed into one of mutual support and admiration. At 2 pm I’ll stop by to drop off her gift. There hasn’t been any alcohol brought into the house by me or my husband for 3 years now. We have plenty of sparkling water, juices, coffee and soda. I feel at peace. Our sons will come over; we’ll have a fire, food, gifts and a movie. I am free from the obsession to move through the evening with a drink in hand.

Me and JJ at a recovery event in September 2014

Me and JJ at a recovery event in September 2014

Life is good!

Merry Christmas!!

12 Comments on “Then and now”

  1. robertlfs says:

    Thanks for sharing – a great story on the difference being in recovery makes!

  2. wonderwinds says:

    “free from the obsession” … normals don’t get that but I sure do! Thanks for putting this online cuz one day someone who with a drink in hand and a bit of shame in their mind is gonna see this and maybe figure out there IS a way out. Life is GOOD indeed!

    • LifeUnbuzzed says:

      Thank you for reading and commenting, wonderwinds! I guess that’s why I put the embarrassing moments of my past “out there”: in order to reach someone with a message of hope.

  3. Wow, you made 1.5 liters last two days? That was my nightly intake.
    Great post and it is nice to have that monkey off my back.
    Recovery rocks.

  4. Mama Sue says:

    Thank you for your honest, down to earth comments. I appreciate your approach to just deciding to NOT drink no matter what. I am about a month into my sobriety and things are just beginning to get easier and less foggy for me. My go to drink is iced cold soda water in a bottle and my bed is my safe place! People like you are really helping me stay strong.

  5. evia859 says:

    Thank you for writing this blog. Reading it is helping in my recovery. ☺

    • LifeUnbuzzed says:

      Thank you for visiting! My purpose in being here is to help others.

      • Sharon says:

        Loved reading your post. Today is day 1. I have tried for the last 10 months. I am done. Sick of alcohol consuming my life and thoughts. So happy to have this site to check in and relate
        To others. To feel motivated
        And not alone.

      • LifeUnbuzzed says:

        Sharon, 8/10/15 is a great sobriety date. I will make a pendant with that date stamped on it. Check back in 30 days and I will send it to you!

  6. Come Healing says:

    Thank you for sharing your story–for all your posts–but this one in particular. I am on Day 4 of not drinking and value the encouragement and advice you provided.

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