Audio: New Years Greetings 2017

Well this is a first. A new year’s day greeting compiled from YOUR voice clips, sent in from all over the world. No kidding, how great is this! I’m going to send this out to my sober podcast subscribers, but wanted you to hear it too.

There’s something for you in here. I guarantee it. And if you don’t laugh and feel touched at the same time, i’ll be surprised. Thanks to everyone who submitted an audio clip. Really. So great to hear the voices from everywhere together in one sober place.

hugs from me

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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

  • Yes, this one got to me. I started bawling as I listened to your voices, especially the woman with 300+ days. This is how I know that I am meant to be here, meant to be back, and that I have stayed away for too long, which is how 85 days into my 100 I decided to drink. And it was so ridiculous because I actually felt safe and confident at the time. I had endured one of the most difficult seasons in recent years, and I had done it sober. I survived nearly losing my mother twice in one week. I survived fall term. I survived the dreadful election. And through it all, I stayed strong, I stayed healthy, I had resolve, and I didn’t drink… until I did. It was such a lighthearted thing in the moment, but it was only a matter of time before things grew dark again. It was only a matter a time before the occasional beverage while out with my beau (who, I should add, was AMAZING and quit drinking right alongside me like this was simply an added bonus of his unconditional love and support) turned into thinking & obsessing about, planning, and negotiating the terms of my drinking. My friends and co-workers had been so supportive and proud of me. Except the closer I got to day 100, I realized I wasn’t counting the days — in fact, I had planned all along to keep going — I was doing what Belle has spoken about so often: I was drifting, I wasn’t utilizing my sober supports, I was becoming complacent, cozy with the thought that I would never count myself among those writing to her about a new Day One. I stopped listening to the OMMs, stopped ordering podcasts, stopped picking up the book, stopped reaching out to sober friends. I was “fine,” after all. I wasn’t feeling tempted, or like I was missing out. I didn’t want to drink. And yet being sober wasn’t the anecdote to all my woes. It wasn’t magic, it was work. I was sober, yes, but I was still feeling tired and anxious and all the rest. And eventually, on a good night, in a good mood, feeling like I deserved a prize for doing the work and surviving, I decided to drink. The world didn’t end. Nothing catastrophic happened. The sting of disappointment wasn’t unbearable, though I suppose it still lingers. I enjoyed a funny movie with my beau and felt relieved that the sky didn’t fall and the world was still spinning. And yet, if this were true–that all is well–I wouldn’t find myself back in the same place I started when I decided back in August, of my own accord and with no low bottom to speak of, to quit drinking. Because it *is* all-consuming, and it’s *not* who I want to be or what I want for myself or for my life. So, I’ve made my way back to myself, to Belle, to my support network, and to all of you. And this time already feels harder than the first, which is why I’ve also looked into *gasp* two local AA meetings to check out–one is a women’s only group on Wednesday morning, and the other is a Friday evening secular group. The seed was planted after I read Michelle Tea’s “How to Grow Up” in its entirety this past Sunday. I am a longtime fan of her work, and I knew she was sober, but I didn’t realize her literary career, her personal success, and her ultimate coming of age (at around 40) didn’t happen until after she had been sober for a year. She mentioned the 12 steps throughout the book, but only in passing, really, and she framed them in a way that was relatable to a young-at-heart wild, weirdo feminist like me! : )

    In closing, I want to say thank you and bravo! to all of you, and to proclaim once again (mostly as a gentle reminder to myself) that being sober suits me. That’s why I’m here, because I don’t want to drink. It’s a new year, and today is a new day two. Go, me! And go, you!

    Take good care out there.


  • Wonderful – I know you guys are all out there – so nice to hear your voices and it makes me feel very happy to know I am hanging out with the cool kids – thanks everyone !!

  • I love this! Belle helped me stop drinking. It will be 2 years on Feb. 13th. My life is so much better. Thank you Belle.

  • Loved hearing the different voices. Especially connected with the woman who was 300+ days of not drinking after having alcohol in her life for more than 35 years. When she said she loved herself to sobriety, something clicked. Thanks for this Belle. Bonne Année!

  • Beautiful and yes, genius. Thanks Belle and to each of you who contributed. A strong chorus to start the New Year!

  • Great audio. Thank you. Love all the different voices. Being sober does suit me and I’m excited about starting and staying that way in 2017. Go me! Go us!

  • AWESOME way to start a brand-new year, listening to all these different voices, but all sharing the same message–GO YOU! — Day 36 here

  • Belle- You ARE a genius. This was more than I expected, and very powerful. My favorite was the lovely woman who is at day 300 something, after 35 years of drinking, and trying not to drink. Thats me – plus 10 years! I keep hearing all these young voices, and I think ‘YES! Do it NOW! Don’t wait until you are in your 60s to stop this insanity!’
    You are bringing a new face to not drinking. and its called “cool”.’
    You are doing a REALLY GOOD THING!
    go YOU!!!!

  • So Powerful! Happy tears. Thank you to everyone who participated. What a great message to hear on this first day of 2017.

  • Absolutely awesome!! GO YOU…. yep few tears but good tears, not rubbishy, sad self pitying tears – im here because i dont want to drink!! xxx