I stopped drinking alcohol in Nov. 2012, because I live with the disease of addiction and alcohol was my main and most troubling addiction.
I'm now 5 1/2 years sober (since November 2012) and follow a 12-step spiritual program of recovery.
By doing a thorough and honest personal inventory of my patterns and habits, I was able to see my truth.
I had been switching from one addiction to another as a way of self-medicating. This included drinking, smoking, toxic relationships/affairs, spending money and of course, overeating.
Seeing these patterns and behaviors has made me realize I was robbing myself of the opportunity to heal and grow every time I picked up a drink, a cigarette, an affair, an impulse buy, or when I overate.
I was simply replacing one bad habit with another ... I didn’t know any healthy habits or coping skills. I didn’t know how to sit with uncomfortable feelings ... I didn't know these feelings would pass, if I would just let them. I had to learn how to do this.
In the last 5 1/2 years, I can honestly say I've never experienced a more beautiful life. I do not live a care-free life ... I experience the same troubles everyone else does, but in recovery I am learning how to handle them without making matters worse.
I have two choices when facing dilemmas ... focus on the positive or negative. I choose to focus on the positive, because negativity is a dangerous place for me to be. Negativity and toxic situations will lead me to relapse in destructive behaviors. For me, to relapse is to die (mentally, spiritually and/or physically). That is my reality.
It's not always easy to choose the happy, positive side, but it does get easier and it is worth it.
One common and consistent factor of any progress that I’ve made in these programs has been and continues to be staying connected with a SUPPORTIVE NETWORK and my willingness to open and honest, as well as my willingness to participate in my recovery.
I cannot do this alone. WE don’t have to do this alone. Together, we can get through this, one day at a time.
I'm always glad to make new friends and to "give back what has so freely been given to me", so please feel free to add me!