1 year, sober.

One year ago today, my life changed forever.

November 8, 2011 was my last drunk, and subsequently the last drink or drug I have taken, and have spent the past 365 days in my own skin.

I’m from a family of alcoholics, you know what they say about the apple and the tree…

I remember the smell of scotch and cigarettes on my mother’s breath every night as she tucked us in, slurry speech that annoyed me.  I had never had a drink, so I didn’t understand. Some kids’ Mom’s had curly hair, some wore blue eyeshadow, mine always had a glass in her hand. I thought this was all normal, until I later developed another frame of reference.  As a kid I would paint and draw to escape and quiet my own mind.  It was the one thing that made me feel good, whole and calm (and still does.)

I didn’t yet understand that my circumstances were a result of my parents’ alcoholism, and my father’s virtual desertion. They divorced when I was 9, he married the woman he’d been having an affair with, and I saw him maybe twice a month. He favored his other two children, named Alcohol and Golf. My Mom drank it away, she worked her ass off to make ends meet, and poured herself a scotch on the rocks the minute she got home from work and continued until she went to bed/passed out. In our upper middle-class suburban neighborhood, we were most certainly the black sheep. Our house was a fucking disaster, and I lived and suffered under the umbrella of overwhelming disorder and chaos. Occasionally listened to, but never, ever heard.

Throughout the ages of nine to thirteen, I transformed from a self-conscious, sad and confused young girl who was often bullied and teased, into an adolescent filled with anger and pain who was outwardly tough and threatening, but was still the exact same little girl inside.  The first night I drank and got high were on the same night, and I was twelve years old. I instantly loved it, it was magic.  I loved the feeling, the numbness and escape into a great abyss as everything else slipped away.  It was my magic cure. This gave me a sense of courage and strength, the anger was allowed out, nasty belligerent comments and accusations that had festered in silence for years, came exploding out in rage.

I found stronger drugs, LSD…a deeper escape.  I got caught with drugs in my locker, ran away, assault and battery, vandalism…I was out of control and no one could control me. I was lost and alone and on a fast downward spiral. With the above-mentioned charges pressed against me, on my court date my parents had enough, and decided to take a “tough love” approach, at which point I was made a warden of the court and sentenced for a period of 2-6 months in the Montrose State Detention Center. I’ll never forget the judge saying, “Isn’t it a shame that no one loves this little girl enough to take her.” I was thirteen. No one ever considered for a second that anyone else might have played a part in this. They just continued on, in their hypocritical alcoholic lives, and I suffered in juvenile lockdown.

It was probably about 85% black in Montrose.  As bad-ass as I had thought I was, I was nothing in here but a terrified skinny white girl.  There were 14-year-old girls with gunshot and stab wounds and showed them off like badges of honor. I stuck out like a sore thumb. I’ll spare you the dozens of very real horror stories. I don’t really remember being released or leaving, but I left with a substantially larger chip on my shoulder, tougher, angrier and waaayyyyy more full of resentment. About a year after I left, Montrose was shut down by the state, due mostly to the large number of suicides and claims of sexual abuse. Hooray.

From there I was taken to the Good Sheppard Center for girls for a period of one year.  It was another non-voluntary facility, no phone calls, they read all mail first, and outdoors consisted of a courtyard surrounded by 4 walls of our main building.  This was a million times better than Montrose however. After that, I came home, entered 10th grade in an upper middle-class predominately white high school. Again, like a sore thumb.

Jesus, I’m on a fucking roll. OK, I’m not going to write 200,000 words, but I’ll tell you I was a highly functioning drug and alcohol user up until last year. I sold pounds of weed out of my apartment in high school (yes, I moved out and got my own apartment in 11th grade, paid for by those pounds of weed distributed out of my backpack,) followed the Grateful Dead around for a year dropping acid on a daily basis, went to Ringling College of Art & Design, made Dean’s list through college, studied abroad at The American University in London, bong hits, cocktails…graduated, worked, drank and drank. When I was 30, my Mom died of cancer at 56, drank more, started my own business, drank and drank, met my future husband, drank, got married, drank, lost my mother-in-law to cancer, drank more, had two kids, drank, stay at home mom, drank more, started popping Percocets and Vicoden, lost my best friend of twenty-three years to fucking cancer when she was only forty, off the deep-end, drank harder, Percocets and Vicoden, flipped my car on its side.

Somehow, after being cut out from my front windshield as my car lay on its side, I was not given a blood test or breathalyzer, did not have a scratch on me, and left the hospital with a huge prescription for Percocet. Good times.

Of course, I made up a big story about what had happened, that did not involve drinking.

Blackouts were frequent if not regular, more drinks, more pills, paralyzing depression, emotionally shut off, therapy, ultimatum by my husband to quit drinking, AA, sobriety, husband moves out, separation, my dog dies, I stay sober, I go to meetings, I buy a house, move, upcoming divorce, and Voila! 1 year sober. Holy fuck.

And here I am. How’s that for a 25 year nutshell?

I’ve made more bad decisions than I can count or remember. I’ve done many things that I’m not proud of, and in some cases, completely and utterly ashamed of. One of the most difficult parts of the past year has been forgiving myself, and that is still a work in progress. I’ve been the quintessential definition of self-serving, self-absorbed and self-centered. I never considered what was left in my wake, it didn’t matter, as long as I was doing what I wanted to do and getting what I wanted. Period. Sure, I did nice things for people, but only because I thought I’d get a fucking parade for it. I was a really awesome person, let me tell you. Funny thing is, I really thought I was.

This is the first stretch of time, since the age of thirteen, that I have not used or drank anything in order to smooth out the hard edges, escape any undesirable feelings, manufacture highs, self-medicate, or just get as far away from myself as possible. It has been quite a journey, one that has been filled with self-realization, incredible loss and incredible gain, pain, joy, discovery, tears, struggle, laughter, letting go, growing up, acceptance, support, forgiveness, and cleaning up the wreckage of my past.

I totally thought sobriety meant giving up a life of fun for a life of boring and uneventful deprivation. The past year has proven that couldn’t be any farther from the truth. Granted, there has been a lot of pain and suffering this year, my entire life exploded into a million pieces and bled all over the fucking place, but that needed to happen in order to rebuild a solid and healthy foundation, something that had never been in place. The thing is, I didn’t need to get high, and I didn’t need to take a drink. I walked through that pain and came out the other side. I dealt with situations like an adult instead of a child. The flip side of that is a peace and serenity that I have never known before. A quiet mind, a settled soul, gratitude, humility, and a contentedness that is worth more than any drink or drug I have ever had. And that is the God’s honest truth people. Fucking unbelievable.

With a whole lot of help from AA, some pretty amazing people, and my willingness and ability to dance a mean 12 step, I am finally someone who I am proud of. No longer am I filled with dread, restlessness, anxiety, panic, and crippling depression. I am present every day, I’m The Best Mommy In The Whole World (according to my mini-me’s.) I am learning how to handle my many emotions, and to be a better person. In essence, I am growing up. Now, here I stand, a 41-year-old woman, who finally knows what she’s worth.

Thanks for taking the time to read, and for your help, support and love along the way.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m all serioused out. Although I never get a certificate of completion in this course, I’ll be happy and grateful to celebrate these milestones along the way like a sober fucking rock star.

Trudging the road to happy destiny.

* If you are in need of help, please visit alcohol detox in Michigan.

111 replies

  1. You are fabulous – congratulations. Holy crap – that’s a story for stories. But you are right – sometimes you have to tear everything down to start with the right foundation. I’m glad you’ve found peace and you now entertain us with your talent. Keep moving forward ~

  2. This post really touched me. We have so much and at the same time so little in common. No substance abuse by my parents or me, and my therapist today has a hard time believing that – our family has all the workings of something-a-holism. Take this post minus alcohol and drugs and it well mirrors my life – behavioral ‘facilities’ & being a sore thumb, being a wild, WILD, free spirit in college yet making the Dean’s list, having work success while being out of control in every other area of my life…etc…
    What I’m struggling with now in the wake of recent tragedy at the hands of my disordered family is learning how to: “No longer…(be) filled with dread, restlessness, anxiety, panic, and crippling depression…learning how to handle my many emotions…growing up.” Finally understanding what I’m worth. I’m pretty sure these words sum up what my therapist and I have been talking about for 2 months now. Because for years, even though I feel I’ve tried to create my own, calm, adult world, inevitably something chaotic happens in my family and it turns me right back into an enmeshed, anxiety-ridden, guilt-obsessed little girl who has to call her old therapist to get talked back into reality (just as I had to 2 months ago now). And if I’m being honest, all the months or years in between bombshells I’ve still lived on a low-level ‘simmer’ of all these feelings anyway.
    Most people think I’ve got my shit together so well, but I know otherwise. Some days I just feel like a big fraud, really. My closest friends can’t understand for the life of them why I don’t have confidence in so many ways, when they see me as a successful overachiever who’s got in going on. I never feel like I belong, never feel smart enough, skinny enough, pretty enough. And yet other ways I’m ballsy as hell and no one would ever get the impression I have *any* insecurities – just watch me get up and karaoke (when I kinda need to keep my day job), or be the first person on a dance floor in a club while everyone whispers and gossips, or jump off a cliff into the ocean before anyone even has time to blink while they are still hemming and hawing over whether or not they can get over their fear and do it.
    I’m rambling. Me me me. Thanks for letting me get some stuff out – I *am* aware, believe it or not, that this is NOT a self-help forum!!
    Long story longer, I’m happy you’ve made it through all that you have. It takes a LOT of strength and willpower, and you should give yourself a high five every night. Or a hug. Or some other gesture of kindness and love that is easier to self-administer. You affect people positively with your humor and writing, but also give a different kind of hope when you share ‘the serious’ like you have today. Thanks for sharing yourself with others.

    • Dear Anonymous,
      Wow. You just blew me away with your own honesty. This can totally be a self-help forum, if in any tiny way I can help another person, or offer anything other than creative masturbation techniques, than I’ve succeeded. I have always been an overachiever, a leader, always needing to be the best at whatever I do. Seemingly scared of nothing. First one to karaoke, in my underwear, if it will get a laugh. But I have shared the same immense feelings of inadequacy. An egomaniac with an inferiority complex, that’s me, and you, and probably a whole shit ton of other people.
      It is a tough road to contentedness, but it does exist. Alcohol/drugs/food/control…these are all just symptoms of emotional deformities and our own personal character defects. Identifying them is the first step. The greatest lesson of all, that has personally helped me more than any other, is the most simple cliche in the world…one day at a time. If I can stay in the day, meaning thoughts and emotions mostly, and avoid going too far forward or too far back, I am able to be grateful, content and generally happy. The “what if’s” and the “what were’s” have been responsible for much if not all of my anxiety and subsequent depression. I can complicate a one car funeral. I can run possible scenarios all day long and fuel my emotions over shit that isn’t even real, only based in fantasy essentially.
      I am also a control freak. I am addicted to controlling outcomes. I’ve spent my life fighting in the quicksand, and now I have learned to roll over and float. Life is going to happen. Life is what we think of it. We need to get out of our own fucking heads, and back into the moments that make up our lives.
      Thanks for sharing, sending you big hugs and peace.
      Tracy

      • I am also a control freak, which is why I’ve never gotten drunk before. I’m bad enough sober. I think writing my blog has helped me get out of my head so much, and diffused situations that I would normally mull over for weeks, leading to more depression, leading to being a sloth, making me feel depressed for being a sloth. If I can make it funny, and even some of the worst shit can look kind of funny later (as you’ve shown!) then I can realize how stupid I’m being. Like when I was feeling jealous that like, everybody was being pressed, so I just wrote a post about being a jealous whiny ass and it was one of the most popular ones I wrote. And I wasn’t jealous afterward either. Funny, that.

        I still harp on FP, and other stuff (is it not a blast giving Le Clown hell?) but it’s in fun (mostly). Sometimes I need to show people the other side, as you have, and that sometimes the funny is to cover up the sad, and sometimes the sad is still there underneath. Which is why i get it out over on Canvas of the Minds, then go back to being Alice.

  3. I’ve often thought those chips would look nice suspended from red, white, and blue grosgrain ribbon (or the color scheme of one’s choice) and worn around the neck (like an Olympic medal). But, I’m not that showy. Mine’s on my keychain. LOL.

    Congrats! Keep up the hard work.

      • Proud to hear about your recovery, my friend. Walk the walk, you will never regret it. My life is better now than it has ever been, and look forward to sharing your experience, strength and hope with others ….. Hugs…

  4. Well done, Tracy. I’m not sure how I happend upon you blog some weeks ago but I am vey happy that I did. You are an anomaly – so sensitive and genuine and loving and somehow simultaneously so rancorously vile. In the good way. And honest. And self-aware. Treat yourself today. You should be proud of all that you have done and all that you have overcome and you should look forward to all that lies aheaf. Well done! (And by treat yourself I mean a venti Egg Nog Latte or something – not some new supersonic dildo.)

    • Thank you. I suppose I am an anomaly, or bi-polar, or multiple personality, one or the other, but whatever I am, I am, and I now own it. I do look forward to the future, and I do plan on celebrating, with my blow-up Willard Scott doll.

  5. “I am finally someone who I am proud of.” ~ My favorite part. I’m proud of you too. This is a wonderful milestone, and I congratulate you. This may be my favorite post from you. Your example helps people like me continue on down a similar road. Thank you.

    • Brother Jon,
      Thanks for being proud of me. As you well know, addiction and recovery is a tough road, but one filled with wonder and serenity. Today I am proud that people have written things like “you’re an inspiration” and “your example helps people”. Those are expressions I certainly never expected to be associated with, and of that, I am truly proud.
      Tracy

  6. This is spectacular Tracy. I am not sure how I happened upon your blog but I am very happy I did. You are an anomaly – simultanesouly very sensitive and genuine and self-aware but also very rancorously vile at the same time. It is so rare and such a great way to be. You should be so proud of all that you have done and the way you can look at life and smile – also a rare quality. Treat yourself today! (And by that I mean a venti Egg Nog Latte or something – not some new supersonic dildo shaped like Willard Scott’s cranium)

  7. SO MANY SOUND BITES form this post. Or one liners, I guess, since they’re written. I am so impressed by your thoughtful, honest, and funny treatment of what is generally a somber topic. You give of yourself, generously.
    1 year is a helluvan achievement. ANd this post is a great way to memorialize it. So glad to know you.

    • Sara,
      Had I not gotten sober, I certainly never would have started this blog, and would of missed out on the awesome friendship that I am privileged enough to have with you both.
      Much love and thanks,
      Tracy

  8. As I’ve said several times before…I wish I’d been in that courtroom to love you. I am now. There are no words to express the Blessing that you are to me…..and to so many others. You’re a worthy, gifted, loving, loud, quiet, brilliant girl – Salute!
    Many hugs and kisses from, YOUR SPONSOR

    • Mrs. Kelly Chesser,
      You have been my sponsor, friend, mother, sister, confidant, mentor and so many other things to me this past year. In your care, I have been taught to open my eyes and ears to a beautiful life that I never knew existed. You loved me when I couldn’t love myself. You gave me constant support and unconditional love as I’ve never known. You opened me up and allowed me to see myself, to see my past, to sort through it, and most importantly, to forgive and let go.
      I love you dearly, my friend.
      Tracy YOUR SPONSEE

  9. Awesome. I’m so happy for you. What’s hilarious, though, is when I get to the comment section for this beautiful, inspirational post, I see that I can click on the last post – creative masturbation techniques, for women. Hey, who needs drugs when we have our va-ja-jays, eh?

  10. Congratulations Tracy! I agree this post was probably your best one yet. You are an amazing person and inspiration. Keep up the good work!

  11. That is a *very* impressive medal of honor you’ve earned. Woah. It’s a long road and a long way for a 13 year old to walk alone. I’m glad you can love that little girl now, because you have so much to give her and show her and you just know you are amazing. That peace and serenity — no one can ever, ever take that away from you.
    You go girl, because you know how to and you can!

  12. I say to you the same thing I said to Le Clown: You are willing to expose a raw, personal side of yourself that I simply cannot do. I am moved by the emotional responses of other bloggers to your post. You expressed it best: “If we don’t laugh we will suffer. Laughter is the great diffuser.”

    Although the thought of you celebrating with your blow-up Willard Scott doll is a bit off-putting.

    • Curmudgeon,
      Thank you. For me this stuff just comes pouring, if not exploding out. I feel better about all of it if there is even a sliver of a chance that I can help or inspire someone else as so many others have helped and inspired me. Getting sober is serious fucking business, and it’s scary as hell, and many people just think they are beyond help or just cannot do it. They can. If I can, they can. Happiness is just around the corner, but you have to be willing to go to any length to get it.
      Now if you’ll excuse me, I must get back to Willard.
      Tracy

  13. Great post Tracy, such a turn around after everything you’ve been through, you should be proud of yourself, here’s to the next 12 months, may they be even better and every year just get better and better.

  14. I am just taking my first steps down the road of sobriety after 9 years battling with booze, and when that got too dangerous, the safety of drugs (yeah, I know that you understand what I mean by that).

    Thank you Tracy, for sharing this post and all the others you’ve already given.

    It has helped me so much already.

    You are amazing. You have done shitty things, and that’s something I understand all too well, but holy fucking crap, woman. Look at you.

    You are pure strength. You are what it is to be human. And to LIVE.

    Right now, you are one of my greatest heroes.

    • Wow.
      let me reiterate…
      Wow.
      You really just made my entire day, in fact, my entire year, so much better, and so much more worth while.
      That line, “right now, you are one of my greatest heroes” is probably one of the most powerful statements I have ever heard attached to my name. I don’t know about a hero, but if in any way I inspired you to stay on the path, then my journey is enriched that much more.
      It is a battle, more so in the beginning, but sweetheart, I assure you, the fruits of your labor will pay off a thousandfold in miraculous ways you never dreamed of.
      Keep trudging the path, it’s yours and yours alone, but there is a world of support and kindred spirits that will love you even when you can’t love yourself.
      From the bottom of my healing heart, I thank you. You made me cry and smile at the same time.
      Keep doing what you’re doing, one day at a time, become who you were always meant to be, and LIVE.
      Again, thank you.
      Tracy

  15. Tracy,
    I knew some of it… Some of it is new to me. I am looking forward to sitting down face to face with you, and get to know my friend over a glass of sparkling water one day.

    Tracy, I am proud of you. I am proud of your achievement. I know what a struggle it is, and what a daily battle it is to remain sober.

    I am proud to be your friend. I am a lucky man to have you in my life. This was also, to me, one of your best written posts.

    With love, and friendship: fuck yeah my friend.
    Eric

    • Eric,
      This is all almost too much. So much love, warmth, genuine compassion and support, encouragement and praise, I can’t even begin to express the immense gratitude I feel today.

      Thank you.

      I am proud of you as well my friend. Our paths crossed for a reason, in such a crowded world, what are the chances of us discovering each other. One in a bazillion maybe?

      I am also proud to have you as a friend, and am extremely fortunate to have you in my life as well. Somehow a Canadian clown has become a part of my daily routine, a pen pal, a long lost brother who has spent his life feeling as misunderstood as I have. A kindred spirit in the truest sense.

      I love the fucking shit out of you, and you know it.
      Tracy

  16. Rock.The.Hell.On!

    I think I’m having more fun now that I’m not drunk all the time- most of the time anyway ;)

    One day at a time and cursing. That’s how I get through it!

    Peace,sista!

    • I’m definitely having more fun, and I can remember shit, and the shit I remember is shit I’m not mortified about.

      We’ll just keep on stringing a shitload of 24 hours together, that’s how we do.

      Thanks for commenting, and you rock the fuck on sister!

  17. I came over after seeing Le Clown (of course) mention your post on Facebook. Huge props to you. I come from a family of alcoholics and other disorders, and I know how weird it is to grow up in a way that SEEMS perfectly normal to you, even though it’s completely dysfunctional and destructive. I can’t imagine what life was like for you, but I know breaking the pattern is so difficult, and such a leap of faith (in whatever form faith takes for you). And you have to napalm everything you know and start over, and that’s brutally difficult. So right on. RIGHT ON.

    • Madame Weebles,
      I have been a fan of yours…through the one and only LeClown, of course, for a while now.
      I appreciate you taking the time to comment over here. I LOVE what you said “you have to napalm everything you know and start over…” nail on the head sister, nail on the head.
      But it’s all good, it’s all so fucking good it’s rather unbelievable.
      Thank you,
      Tracy

      • Well snap my bra, I had no idea you even knew who I was. Come on over and say hi one of these days!

        And yeah, the napalming. Ugly stuff, but the results of the rebuilding are great. So glad for you. Peace out.

  18. I just wanted to congratulate you and thank you for this post. What an incredible achievement, and how amazing to be taking charge and finding serenity… AND you’re an awesome writer! Such a powerful post!

    • Mike,
      Thanks for popping in to comment. 1 year is indeed, an awesome achievement, but I certainly didn’t do it alone, and this is not a train can ever hop off of. I keep on riding it, and good shit happens. Even when the bad shit hits, I know that it just teaches me what I need to learn and will come out the other side bigger and brighter for it. It’s pretty cool not being fucked up all the time, sober is the new high.
      Cheers,
      Tracy

  19. Congratulations on one year sober. I am proud of you and happy to have met you here. This is a gut wrenching story, and tears are running down my face instead of my legs this time. I think you will help a lot of people with this. My words today are horribly inadequate, so I’m pinching them off. Just know I stand in awe of your courage, strength, and willingness to do the hard work, and I think you are beautiful.

    • You’re damn right about that. It was like saying goodbye to a best friend, like a death. You mourn the loss and you slowly realize that life goes on…
      Thanks for the props.

  20. Wow! What a sincere and moving post. This was written with such candor that even though I haven’t struggled with alcoholism, I can completely relate to your story. Congratulations on one year sober–it sounds like the journey was a difficult one, but you should absolutely be proud of the person you are. Thanks so much for writing.

    • Thanks so much for stopping by to comment. I have the most amazing followers and I am incredibly moved by this comment thread, it was certainly never expected, but utterly appreciated. I am happy if this helps any one in any way or offers even a glimmer of hope to those still suffering.

    • Thanks Howler!
      You’re part of the club too, eh? Fuck, we’re everywhere! Meeting so many people through this blog who are also in recovery or struggling with it is incredible. Everybody’s got a story, and everybody can change the ending, too.

      • Yep, 3.5 years clean and sober 5 years of therapy. Finally feel comfortable in my own skin, although I do get a little help from Lexapro to take the edge of the anxiety that never quite leaves and the depression that likes to sulk around with the anxiety…..

        It is wonderful that we can be given that second chance (or third or one millionth…) at life…

        Keep up the good work! :)

  21. I am kicking myself in the ass for not going to the community parties because I never knew such a humorous, motivating and down to earth woman lived only a few doors down from me. Anyway I’m embarrassed to admit that I googled your name the other night for your phone number because your garage doors were open pretty late and no cars were in the driveway, I just felt an odd vibe. Your blog came up in the search and not only did I forget to continue searching for a number, I was late putting my son to bed because your blog is like a good piece of chocolate, I couldn’t stop indulging. A good laugh and tears from self realization are two things my life needed (the community contact list too I suppose.) Thank you for your blog it has been an eye opener in many ways. Makes me wonder how many other awesome neighbors I have missed out on meeting. What really makes me feel like an asshole is the fact that I didn’t even know you had moved.
    Here’s to you on your year of sobriety, may you have a hundred more.
    In the end, I’m happy the garage door was open (and obviously everything was fine). Turned out to be some kind of blogging fate.

    Looks like i’ll never be head of a community watch…

    • Funny how the world works…in mysterious ways. Well, you found me, and I’m a whopping 3 miles away. I kind of pulled out of the neighborhood loop a bit while going through getting sober, divorced, etc…not exactly bus stop chatter. Now it’s all good, I’m out of the closet, like the gays, and it’s awesome. I’m glad you found me and took something away from this, you never know who’s next door if you don’t make yourself available…this I know all too well.

      Thanks for reaching out, commenting, and good luck on the community watch.

  22. No wonder you use the word fuck all the time! But seriously you have really worked so hard. I can’t even imagine how difficult it must have been to work through that year. Hugs to you and best wishes for a happy and peaceful life from here on out!!!!!!!

  23. This was powerful and amazing and sad and happy. Wow…sounds like 100 years of hard work in one year. Amazing. Thank you for sharing this hard road and this enlightened road you are now on…here’s a ‘fuck yeah!!’ instead of a ‘cheers’! : )

    • It feels like 100 years of work in a year quite honestly. It’s really been amazing though, incredibly hard at times, but overall wonderful. I know I’m finally heading in the right direction.
      Thanks for taking the time to comment.
      Fuck yeah!

  24. It feels like 100 years of work in a year quite honestly. It’s really been amazing though, incredibly hard at times, but overall wonderful. I know I’m finally heading in the right direction.
    Thanks for taking the time to comment.
    Fuck yeah!

  25. Congratulations on one year. What an accomplishment. And also thank you for writing this brave post; I am glad you’ve found your peace in sobriety. Also: fuck. Because no comment or post is complete without it.

  26. Congrats on one year! That’s huge! I’m just ahead of you at 18 months. One day at a time…

    Cancer sucks. I’m sorry for your losses. I can relate to sooo much of it. I lost my mom to cancer early last year, right before my sobriety stuck. I’m grateful she knew I was trying. I’m sure she’s up there giving me HP a few lectures on how to best keep my ass sober. It’s a fun thought for me at least.

    But yeah, no matter what, we don’t drink anymore. Not an option.

    Kick year two’s ass! It’ll be different than year one- lots of self-discovery and getting to know and like yourself again…

    Very proud of you and I admire your courage in sharing your story with us.

    Rock on with your bad sober self!
    Christy

  27. Christy,
    For starters, congrats right back at’cha sister! Huge accomplishment stringing all those days together. 1 year is great, but I’ve got a lifetime to go. I now have tools and coping mechanisms in place that I did not have before, and if we just keep doing the next right thing, we will get better and better.
    I’m sorry about your Mom, it is great she saw you get started in sobriety, that was a huge gift. Cancer is a fucking bitch, but drinking certainly doesn’t change that. Kudos to you for walking through that pain sober. Keep it up.
    Tracy

  28. This is my first real post that I’ve read from you. I have to say, holy hell. I love your raw emotion. I want to say congratulations. I want to say I’m blown away that you overcame everything. I want to say you’ve overcome your addictions. But instead I’m going to say you’ve done amazing and I hope you can continue your journey because you seem so much stronger and happier. I know it’s a daily battle but I also know that peace and serenity is addicting in the best way possible.

    I wish the best for you and your mini-me’s :)

  29. You’re a true inspiration. I’m very new to your blog, but I can’t stop reading it. One year sober is fucking amazing. Congratulations! I look forward to having that kind of time under my belt.

    • Thank you, keep on reading…there are plenty of laughs between all the ‘inspiration’. Stay on the path, it’s beyond your wildest dreams. I remember thinking 30 days was an eternity, and here I am. It gets easier, the beginning is hard, we have to learn a new way of life, but the change that comes is worth more than drinking ever was.
      Best to you,
      Tracy

  30. I’m so glad I posted this. The response was/is overwhelming, and if you took even a tiny sliver of hope away from this, than it was all worth it.
    Thank you, from the bottom of my healing heart.
    Tracy

  31. Hi There
    I have just found your post on 1 year of the sauce and can i say well done in my wildest dreams i would love to do that
    I said to myself at the start of the year i wont and cannot live another bloody year the same ,the pain is to much the anxiety is to much and the stress is killing me , and what has changed chuff all with just a few weeks till year end its been the same shitty year, pissing it up the wall

    My body is in pieces , i feel i have the body of a 90 year not a 40 year old, my anxiety is at a all time high to the point i drive miles out of my way to miss motorways and bridges they freak me out with a hangover ,i have run out of my chill pills ! each day i am a mess til lunch time then its a down hill run till i can get a beer in and that straightens me back up then more beers then wine with dinner and hey presto pissed again

    I started my own business a few years ago i was going to take on the world, i loved telling people about what we do and selling the love – now i have lost all confidence,i don`t go to networking events now ,i avoid any contact with clients and suppliers ( always email never phone) my business has neally gone under a few times and if it wasent for the amazing crew that work with me and put up with my wild mood swings we would be history

    I have a young family , kids that are to die for they are the funniest happiest people i always wanted a family and a loving partner – i have it all , but i cant wait to get the kids in bed so i can relax (drink in peace) my partner is a patient saint but that cant last for ever , she has no idea how much i drink she knows i am a heavy drinker – she too puts up with my being only because she hopes it will get better . people in general have no idea they think i am a awesome business owner , a great parent and have the perfect life – what a sham the front door may look in order but open the front door and you will see a freakin mess , a highly stressed unfit , unhappy , angry person suffering more than people would ever know, the anxiety is unreal (till i have a beer)

    i did 3 months of the piss last year but it wasent enough ( i often have a few months off the piss then say to myself fuck it i dont need to be on the wagon) to get back in shape in mind body and soul after the years of abuse i have out my body through it will take time maybe a year

    I am thinking of starting my booze free period before xmas so i can wake up on xmas day and spend it fresh and hangover free with my children NOT hungover to f$%k watching the clock till its time for a beer to `straighten ` me out – god listen to this its madness

    I want to wake up in a year and SAY i Fuckin nailed it 2013 i got control of my life , i made the difference i have always wanted to make , i want to say i have a thriving business and a loving peacefull relationship with my family and i GOT RID OF MY FUCKIN BEER BELLY ONCE AND FOR ALL

    Thanks for reading any tips would be great

    HOPE

    PS is it beer o`clock yet

    PPS i think i may start a blog like you its a good way to keep track of your progress

  32. Hi Tracy! Congratulations. I celebrated my one year sober from drugs and alcohol on March 6. I googled one year sober and happily stumbled across your blog. Its really creative and hilarious! Cheers. Hirsch S.

  33. I have many insecurities and deep doubts about myself, but when I read what others go through in life..I feel that I really should get real, as honestly I have no real problems….you are as others like you are amazing and I wish you love and luck on your journey xx and I will be an avid reader from now on:)

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