Today I am celebrating 95 days of sobriety.

95 days of FREEDOM.

95 days of really tough work.

I haven’t hidden the struggle I have been having with alcohol but I also haven’t talked about it openly. A big part of that is probably the fear that I couldn’t stick to it.

I have been trying to string together a few days of sobriety for over two years and it just wouldn’t stick.

I thought I would die at times.

I thought it was impossible to quit drinking.

I thought that my life without alcohol was like a punishment of some kind.

I thought that there was something wrong with me if I couldn’t just drink in moderation with everyone else.

I haven’t always had a problem with alcohol and I never really saw myself as the typical alcoholic so I didn’t see a need to change anything.

Until it got bad. REALLY bad.

It snuck up on me really fast and with full steam when we suffered the loss of our baby.

I started just needing a glass of wine in the evening to unwind and continued to use it to cope with my grief. That turned into half a bottle every night which turned into having a drinks earlier in the day.

I could limit my drinks to just a couple but I was constantly obsessing about when I would drink and if I had any at home.

If there was no alcohol in my house in the evening it seemed like an emergency.

Drinking had become my one and only tool to cope with the pressures of life and grief.

I started to make really bad decisions and my family was falling apart. I had no patience with my kids and no respect for anyone in my life. I was digging a very deep hole but couldn’t see a way out.

I acknowleged the addiction but couldn’t stop.

This is when I started to hide it. Classic.

Vodka hidden in water bottles, wine in my coffee mug. You name it.

I hated myself and felt helpless. Every single morning I would wake up and tell myself “today I will not drink”. Then I would try to go for a run or do something healthy but in then end I would still drink.

I felt like a failure every day.

Last summer I found a some very inspirational women online ( Holly Glenn Whitaker, Laura Erin McKowen) and learned how to build a “toolkit” and how to work through this mess of an addiction. It was incredible to read their stories and to finally relate to someone.

I started to deal head on with my anxiety and just kept adding in the good stuff while trying to take out the booze. Yoga was a huge part of this.

I may only be at 95 days but I have so much faith that I can do this.

I am thankful for going through this crap and for all the wonderful people it has brought into my life.

This path of recovery is a fucking tough and painful one at times but it is where I want to be.

So while I was doing laundry this afternoon I was smiling because a year ago I couldn’t do so much as a load of laundry without having a buzz on. Whoa.

That was a lot but it feels good to get it all out there.

Stephanie Anderson

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