When I started blogging in 2013, I had no idea what I was doing. I started blogging about my new career that got started when I started my own health & fitness journey in 2012. I blogged fairly regularly and then pretty much stopped in 2015, when my life TOTALLY & COMPLETELY fell apart. I decided to get sober on October 25, 2015 and I am not sure why, but I never thought to blog about it. I have openly shared my journey on Facebook, YouTube and Instagram, but never blogged about it. Looking back, I wish I had of. It would have been nice to be able to look back and read my thoughts and feelings each day. So I feel like, starting a blog dedicated to my sobriety journey NOW, 18+ months in, is like moving backward. But, it’s better to start NOW than never, right?
Last week, I traveled to New Orleans, Louisiana for an annual event that I have been attending since 2013, that is hosted by the company that I have been with since early 2012. These events used to be an excuse to PARTY. The party began days before we’d even leave. I’d go into “vaca-mode” aka “party-mode” 2 days before every event.
Last year, the event was in Nashville, Tennessee. I was 9 months sober. I had already made it through 1 major trip surrounded by alcohol and our reminders of our old lifestyle and passed with flying colors, so I wasn’t too concerned about falling off the wagon. We had rented a house, which was far removed from downtown Nashville and brought our son Rebel so the temptation to drink was decreased. On that particular trip, some of our friends and houseguests chose to drink and the drama that I witnessed because of it was a great reminder as to why I quit drinking.
This year was different. This year I was in New Orleans, which used to be my FAVORITE party city. It is a city where anything goes. It is one place where I could go where no one knew me and anything is acceptable. I knew I wouldn’t fall off the wagon. I remain committed to my sobriety. I had Rebel and my step-daughter Hailey with me & I was there with my support system. But being in that city brought back so many old memories and familiar feelings. As the days go by, it’s easier to stay committed to this journey, but at the same time, as the days go on, my mind starts playing tricks on me. Part of me fantasizes about being able to party again. Part of me wonders if enough time has passed. Part of me wonders if I have healed enough to have a healthy relationship with alcohol. Part of me wants to “feel normal”. But then the other part of me reminds myself that I have come so far and haven’t needed a drink to celebrate or cope in 18+ months that has been full of exciting, happy, sad and stressful moments. I have made it this far without alcohol and my life is better because of it. At the end of every gut-check moment, I remain steadfast to my commitment, but the internal conflict is at times, draining.
I shared some of my feelings LIVE on my 628th day of my journey.
Today, the kids and I went to the movies to see the movie Girls Trip, which the whole entire movie takes place in New Orleans. Rebel loved seeing all of the places that we had just seen days ago that were so familiar (The Convention Center, The Mercedes-Benz Super Dome and some of the streets we had walked down together).
The movie was HILARIOUS (if you have a dirty sense of humor), but it seemed like the whole movie was based on getting “turnt up”, bar-hopping and boozing it up because that is WHAT you are EXPECTED to do on a “Girls Trip”. You never really notice these things until you become sober. It is very apparent that alcohol is publicized at an all-time high on TV and in movies. Alcohol is more predominant now, than it was 15 years ago. Alcoholism is normally and so ally acceptable, which makes it a hard addiction to beat, because it’s legal and EVERYWHERE.