Early in sobriety, the focus was on not drinking, how I was feeling and just living life without the numb. The longer time went on, the easier it became. Things would come up, I learned how to deal. The depression and anxiety that had been numbed for so many years was finally allowed to bubble up, surface and be expelled. I sought counseling. I used medication for a while. It saved my sanity. I gained new tools in my tool belt to navigate living a life in a skin I don’t always feel comfortable in.
In conversations with other sober peeps, I have gained a new understanding that only hindsight and experience can teach. When people ask questions about their own drinking I can now recognize that when I was asking those same questions – I had a problem that I did not want. But in that rearview mirror perspective I see it so much clearer than I did then – minus all the evaluating, the justifying, lets face it – the bullshitting – I was doing to myself to convince myself otherwise.
In early sobriety I wanted to be somehow NOT the thing I was afraid I was. Couldn’t I just please be a normal drinker? Couldn’t I just stop at one or two? Surely I should be able to do that. I’m an adult for God’s sake. And moms NEED wine, right? Aren’t I so sophisticated drinking my red wine? Seeking support for what I wanted came easily. You can find anything you want online – but it’s not always what you need.
I’m so grateful for sobriety, for feeling the things I don’t always want to deal with. But the thing that I’m really thankful for is the ability to not only recognize myself in others’ own journeys, but to offer advice and a shoulder from the standpoint of “I’ve been there….” Those voices and support were invaluable to me in early sobriety.
3 years makes a hell of a difference in perspective.
I am so grateful.
2 thoughts on “Perspective”
Great post. I’m so glad I read it. I’m coming up on two years and my sister is currently in the hospital dextoxing and has stage 4 cirrhosis. At first I felt a lot of blame, but now I’m seeing that it’s not about me, and if she decides to seek my help and support, I’ll be there. And I can offer perspective that I couldn’t when I was newly sober. Thanks for writing this. Xx
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It’s so hard. For ourselves and to watch those we love continue to suffer. And I agree with you wholeheartedly; for your sister, it’s nothing to do with you. Easy to say, harder to internalize. ❤️
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