4 Years!

Dear Readers, 
4 Years!

Today, September 4, I have been sober for four years. 

Lately, I have been seeing and hearing about people who have died from alcohol and/or alcohol related problems. Sometimes, I tend to forget how brutal this disease is, partly because I don't see this in my day to day life. 

It usually destroys us slowly. It destroys families, marriages, cars, jobs, financial security, and hope. I was reminded of this again today when in a meeting I heard of several more destroyed lives. 

Most of you reading this have seen all the statistics, but for those that haven't, here are the latest from the CDC
On a Hike in Northern Minnesota!

When I tried to get sober, I looked for hope. I read bloggers who were making it, and I told myself if they could, I could. 
If they said life was better, I believed them.

I found real life sober people whose lives were far happier.
I believed them, too. I didn't know how that would happen, but with time and learning new ways of coping, my life became happier, too!

I really can't say how I got here, except really one day at a time. I didn't take that drink today. And a lot of work!

The trees have to survive on with very little dirt! Mostly rocks!
For many years, we spend Labor Day weekend, up north with friends, and it is a big drinking weekend. I would often drink way too much, tripping over stones, sneaking drinks behind hubs back, getting moody, and just acting weird. Even last year, when I was 3 years sober, was hard for me.

This year, after writing my last post, I spoke up for myself about my hearing, asking people to repeat or speak up. I told the whole group so they really understood. One of my friend is losing his hearing and agreed with me, which he hadn't said before. I only once had a wishful feeling of having my wine.
It passed.

I was almost normal acting, lol, and did not isolate myself. Another friend remarked I seemed different this time, and that she had fun with me. 

As there seems to be lessons everywhere in life, what were the lessons I learned this weekend?
If I want to be included I have to ask sometimes.
Hubs took this one early morning while fishing!
If someone asks me to join in, I need to do that.
I need to call and ask friends to do something, not wait to be invited.
Nature is my safe place when things get overwhelming, and taking nature photos fills the hole where music was.
Drinking does not help me fit in, it just makes me get depressed.

There is hope. 
I know this from all the people in recovery I have met, here, there and everywhere.

With Love,


On Day 1461, or 4 Years,
Wendy

Comments

  1. Oh wow 4 years - so many congratulations to you Wendy!! You're an inspiration to me, and the words of encouragement you give to me (and others) are a wonderful thing. Much love, Red xx

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  2. Congratulations, Wendy! What an inspiring post. Absolutely love the photos too! I understand your struggle. My son has a major hearing problem after undergoing two brain surgeries to remove a large tumor. It's not an easy road. I wish you peace and blessings! J x

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    1. Oh, I am so sorry your son is struggling with that, as well as a brain tumor. Thank you so much, and love to your son!
      xo

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    2. Thank you!! He's doing well. The Mayo Clinic actually saved his life. He came out from CA after the first failed surgery in San Diego. The Mayo is an amazing place! We thank God for them every day! Take care, Wendy. :) xx

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  3. Great post, Wendy! Congratulations!!!

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  4. Congratulations on 4 years!! I so look up to you and feel like I know you after all these years of starts and stops on my end. You sound so amazing and so put together, I only hope one day I can say the same. Thank you from the bottom of my heart for being such a courageous sober warrior. Hugs. A.

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    1. Lol! I am definitely not put together! It’s 9:30 am here, and I’m still playing computer games!! But, I ask myself how can I make life better for myself and other people. I ask, how can I bring joy?
      xo

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  5. Congratulations! Such a wonderful milestone!

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  6. Happy anniversary, Wendy!! The transformation you've done on your life is beautiful, and I can only imagine the reverberations all around you -- to Mr. UT and far, far beyond. Your comment that "if I want to be included I have to ask sometimes" struck a chord with me. It's true right now for me, as I have many friends in two different homes, and I realized the other day (in a bummed out mood) that no one EVER initiates a social thing with me. I do all the initiating, in both places. I had put that in the category of Good Problems to Have (many wonderful friends), but it hurts sometimes -- and I realized that I need to just ask them to. Especially up north where most of them are, I'm going to simply tell them how I'm feeling and ask them to ask me ... to have coffee. I'm sure they have no idea how I'm feeling. I may not be immediately in town when they ask, but we can put something on the calendar. Asking to be included ... isn't the intuitive thing to do sometimes but can be exactly the thing. I'm so glad you spoke up at your Labor Day gathering about this!!

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    1. Thank you, Adrian! It’s hard to ask for what I need without thinking I sound needy, or pushy, or whatever. But if I don’t ask, I don’t get.
      Hugs!
      xo

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  7. Happy Happy 4 Years!! I'm so glad you enjoyed your weekend, it's so hard for me to be around others who a drinking and "enjoying themselves"--I just remind myself I'll have a clear head in the morning ;) I agree with you about nature, thankfully we are able to retreat and enjoy its beauty when the world is getting crazy. Beautiful photos! xx

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    2. Thank you, Lori!
      I am glad I was an adult this weekend! A fun one! Nature was my escape route!!
      xo

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  8. Congrats! Kudos to you
    Always a great source of inspiration!
    From MeditationAndNoBooze

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  9. I had a massive smile when I saw this post! Congratulations to you on your 4 years!

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    1. Thank you, MM! I hope you and Mr. M are good!
      xo

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  10. Congratulations Wendy. Flossie x

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  11. So inspiring! Congrats on four years :-)

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  12. You've helped lots of us stay on the sober path. Thank you, Wendy!!

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    1. Likewise with you, Shawna!! I still remember your early beginnings on your blog!! Hope your writing is going well!
      xo

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  13. Just fantastic!!!! You're truly an inspiration for me. And your writing always brings me joy.
    Congratulations, and to many more years to come!!!

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