To the girl a year ago that said “I quit.” You decided to give up, just for a day. Then not drinking, little by little, became the rainbow in your clouds. You didn’t really know why at first but you knew you must. You knew in your gut this was more than indigestion burning inside. You knew you must stop the cycles and old patterns. Now, 365 day 1’s later your many ‘why I quit’s’ magically appeared… I quit for my anxiety. My obesity. My broken heart. My grief. My stabbing chest pains. Shingles. Arthritis. My God. My boys. My own self.
To the girl a year ago you kept your head above water as it ebbed and flowed. Sometimes feeling like drowning and sometimes like a drought. You kept going. You changed. You can always change. You get to make the choice. You get to quit abusing alcohol for any reason you need. I quit to write. I quit to stop the never ending acid reflux, bad sleep, and headaches too. I quit to stop the self loathing, guilt, shame cycle. I stopped, I paused, I rested, I surrendered, I gave myself permission. I quit to leave the the heavy behind. I quit because I was tired. I quit because I’d tried every single thing else to “fix” things. I quit because it was one of the few things I could control in this crazy amazing beautiful world.
To the girl a year ago I finally listened to your plea. I didn’t wait to hit someone else’s definition of “rock bottom.” I didn’t wait for a catastrophe to blow up. I quit because I am enough, this is a choice, not an amount. I am enough just as I am. I learned that this life is full of worth, and so am I. This life is full of great abundance, goodness and if you can you MUST do the work to heal, help, and care for your own self, day by day, bit by bit. Put the oxygen mask on yourself first. If you can’t breathe you’re not able to help others to do so.
To the girl a year ago I thought about not posting, or leaving a caption that was ‘short and sweet’ because it feels impossible to put into words 1 year sober, and it also feels impossible that I’m here today. Even though it’s been a long year (one hell of one for us all!) it feels like only a short moment now thinking back to my Day 1.
To the girl today… When I think about why I’m here, and how I feel I think of the words I just read in The Pilgrim at Tinker Creek by Annie Dillard, “The answer must be, I think, that beauty and grace are performed whether or not we will or sense them. The least we can do is try to be there.” The answer for me is to just try. Try to be there. Fully and presently in this amazing life. We’re all trying the best way we know how. After trying alcohol, antidepressants, disordered eating and toxic positivity (just to name a few things ), a year ago I had to try to be hangover, brain fog, and panic attack free. I wanted to try this new way to not ignore my needs, fears, truths and wish to escape from it all. To try to find a new way to protect my energy in this performance we call life. To no longer numb through the fleeting moments of beauty and grace in the world and in me. It’s one short and sweet lucky life I’m so grateful to try to live soberly.