100 Day Challenge (update)

To the best of my knowledge, and not taking into consideration time change (i.e. it’s tomorrow in Australia already), I’m happy to report that 13 people so far have signed up to do the 100 day challenge.  Leigh Ann is 7 days, Carrie is 11, SoberInMtl is 49 (hooray tomorrow is 50!), and VP is on day 10.

I’ve had a great week with lots of great messages from sober penpals. Some just email and say ‘sober’, while others are more chatty 🙂

I had a very interesting email from Carrie (day 11)… and with her permission, I’m posting an extract here:

it’s been a huge help to be reading blogs, writing emails about it and generally feeling part of something which is bigger than just me and the desire to stop, all by myself. The challenge is brilliant too. I am going on a trip this weekend to see a girlfriend who I would usually associate with a big drink up. Dinner/wine/chatting/wine/movie/wine and the most HORRENDOUS hangover the next morning … followed by lunch/wine blah, blah, blah. Anyway on the phone I almost didn’t tell her that I am not drinking. I was dreading the disappointment in her voice. But when I thought about the challenge, I just told her I wouldn’t be drinking. I couldn’t bear the thought of having to start again or of having to say I couldn’t overcome the first real hurdle. It wouldn’t have even involved anything major, just the sound of a disappointed friend … really what is so bad about that? People get upset, let down, disappointed all the time. It’s not my responsibility to protect them from that?!

So, I will go on my trip and I won’t drink. If it hadn’t been for the challenge, then I probably would have postponed my precious sobriety again. So, thank you for that.

anyway, i just wanted to share how genius i think carrie is. it is super amazing to get an email like that, i can assure you.

All-round, the universe has really been rewarding me this week. thoughtful emails from (virtual) strangers. Kindness everywhere.  I even had a client in the US mail me (out of nowhere) the two things i can’t get here without huge expense: mayonnaise and canned cranberry sauce. with a note that says: “thanks for helping me to become a better version of myself.”  sniff.  it’s just one of those weeks 🙂

and every message I get, every email i send, every blog i read, every comment I make, and every random box of presents I get from a stranger — all add up to a happy, sober girl.  I even had cake for breakfast.  Really, this has just been the best day!

Go Team 100, Go 🙂


I want to put this online, to hold myself accountable. I want to document the noise in my head. I'm tired of thinking about drinking. date of last drink: june 30, 2012

  • I would send you mayo and canned goods! LOL I’m on day 15 and I have been reading your blog daily and read your book! I need a sober pen pal! There are so many things I want to tell someone that would get it!!! I’m on the waiting list!

  • Belle,
    I am all IN! My on and off again journey the past two weeks have been very helpful for me to understand that I really cannot moderate. I love the idea of the 100 day challenge, and I will take it! I’ll send you an email. Support is everything. Thanks, ladies!

  • Yay, what lovely comments. Carrie, I can’t wait to hear how the weekend was and that you made it through feeling strong, sober, proud and happy. xo

  • Hi Belle,
    I am so glad you shared my story. I am off on my trip now and will report back on the reaction (and all the action!) when I get back. I love the support and encouragement I have found on here. I will take it all with me this weekend and I know that I will be stronger for it.
    Go Team 100 and everyone else out there in Sobersphere. You are all so amazing. Here’s to the weekend!
    Carrie x

  • i’m so proud of you all. I’m cheering from here and knowing you’ll be there and sober, too.

  • What a great post! I wish I had more than 7 days, but I’m thankful for the 7, soon to be 8.

    I’m anxious too to hear how Carrie’s friend reacted. I agree with Belle & that sometimes we build things up some much our heads & everything turns out to be no big deal. I hope it was that way here.

  • Also, I wish I were more techy clever ’cause it’d be cool if there were some way to get all the 100 day people talking, like a mini forum. A Yahoo group maybe? Hmmm… I might give this some more thought. I guess there’re a million support forums out there but the sense of team unity might help keep resolve strong.

  • Oh I love this! And I love you dear Belle for helping make it happen.


    HOORAY FOR YOU, YOU ROCK! (Remember what Belle always says: Sober girls – and boys – rock.) I cannot tell you how delighted that makes me. I don’t even know you but knowing that in this circuitous fashion my own falling (on and) off the wagon and trying to get solidly back on it has led someone else somewhere to overcome a sobriety hurdle and feel good about it… well, that is just damn cool!

    And how did your friend react anyway? I ask because sometimes I’ve found I’ve built stuff like that up and up and up in my head only to have it just not be an issue at all and then I wonder how much of it was really all about my own rationalisations for drinking. Often people don’t care half as much as we do. Like wouldn’t it have been funny if your friend had said, “Oh sure, cool, I’m on antibiotics so I can’t drink anyway.” That kind of thing has happened to me after I’ve agonised about how “disappointed” someone else will be if I don’t drink. Ridiculous really when you think about it.

    Plus, it’s also a good measure of a friend if they’re support you anyway even if they ARE quietly disappointed you’re not joining the party. Had that experience too and it’s nice. The “friends” who give you a hard time… let them go.

    Good job you!

    Lilly xo

    • Hi Lilly,
      Great to meet you. I am honoured to be part of the challenge and am so grateful to you and Belle (and Amy) who all hold out their hand in many different ways to help and support each other and this community. Collectively, it has a huge impact on so many lives, it’s just mind blowing stuff! I cannot believe how comforted I am feeling right now by all of the support, experience and humility I have found through all of you. Thank you…
      Carrie x