email from Brett: “I’ve been too long with my head in the sand, but I’ve been doing a lot of soul-searching, and I am so HAPPY to say that today is Day 18! No drinks … completely thrilled, and not struggling. I’m not white-knuckling. The feeling of control and sobriety, in and of itself, is trumping any cravings. I think my toolbox finally filled up enough to make it stick. I am not oblivious to the dangers of temptation, or that it will stay this “easy”, but I really believe I’ve got this thing … The most interesting, most eye-opening, and sometimes the most terrifying yet rewarding part has been (after the first 10 days or so) the clarity with which I can see everything I was numbing. Relationship problems? Numb them. Dissatisfaction with parenting efforts? Numb them. Hatred for your career and health choices? Numb them. Wow. The power the drink held over me was not just the power of “it’s fun to have a drink and hang out, I want more of that” but more insidiously “I am doing all of your (non) coping so you can continue putting band-aids on things.” I am so excited to live my life sober, and deal with problems and issues sober, so I can actually make my life better become a full participant in it. I know it now, after taking the leap – it will get better, because I am in control and will make it better. You just have to take that leap… hugs, B.”
from me, now, 4 years in the future from this email: the feeling of ‘i’ve got this’ can be wolfie speaking. the thing we ‘get’ is repetition, re-learning, that we want to be sober, that it suits us. the thing we ‘get’ is preventative maintenance. the thing we ‘get’ is that we need to stay connected to people who ‘get it’ so that we aren’t alone in our head, listening to wolfie. i did a facebook live video about this exact idea: the necessity of repetition (and how being sober is NOT like banana bread). you can watch it here.]
note. facebook is not private. you can decide if you want to like or comment, but you can watch the video by clicking the link and watching a pre-recorded video is anonymous.
email from AP:
“I finally realize what exit means for me. Other than the nice exit the elevator metaphor. I will hang this by my desk so it will be a reminder to exit the work world ‘when I’m feeling the obsession’ to finish the project and it’s way beyond the regular work day hours and I have not exercised or done self care. It’s when I feel like I need a drink to help me exit that place. This will be the visual reminder to exit before I have allowed my work to take over and push me into the wound up mode. The painting will also be a nice connection to you and the story of how you began selling your husband’s paintings to your followers and a connection to your fellow warriors on the same path. As well, how letting go of something and exiting from its grip will open up the space to pursue purpose and do things we enjoy – especially if it’s also helping someone else. This is a nice step for me as I solidify my commitment to a better mind set, control over my decisions which make me feel proud of myself. I just listened to one of your podcasts – I enjoyed a few laugh out loud moments on it and I’m sitting outside in the shade – drinking tea, eating a piece of chocolate. What a nice surprise I felt like buying an exit painting. I could not have felt this relief and peace and contentment had I drank myself out of the work mode. Deep breaths and smiles.”
new painting 784:
link to see a larger photo