I’ve been an alcoholic my whole life. 40+ years of my 52 years of life have been wasted by me and my disease. I basically have 2 lives; my life before my son and my life after my son. Keep in mind, I am a “functioning” alcoholic. That means that I haven’t lost many jobs, haven’t killed anyone with my car (yet), yet….yet…yet. It is only a simple matter of time.
During my first life, I could write a few books on the outrageous, insane behaviors and addictions that I’ve lived through. It is completely and utterly unbelievable that I am not dead. When I was finally at the lowest point I have ever been thus far (but I honestly don’t think it was my bottom), I went to detox and then to a long-term rehab (6-months). This of course after at least 5-6 rehabs, both inpatient and outpatient.
Wouldn’t you know it, I got involved with a man and got pregnant. Let’s call him L., Of course, we were kicked out and in my usual fashion, I allowed him to make me believe that he would take care of me and our baby. So we moved back to his hometown. My family had no idea where I was or aware of the situation.
When we moved, I was about 2 months pregnant. Because he was a long-time, chronically relapsing heroin addict, his mother didn’t trust either of us and made me prove that I was pregnant. She was difficult, but generous, with both of us. She did help us a lot and looking back, it seems so unreal. She helped us get a small place above a flower shop, got me a job at the daycare she worked at and tried to help us settle down. We both got jobs and tried to make a home.
Not more than 2 months later, L relapsed. He came back to our tiny apartment and stole every single that I had in the world–including new baby clothes and toys, any and all money, jewelry, TV — EVERYTHING. The entire enchilada! I was probably 4 months pregnant at the time.
To make a long story short, my incredible, amazing, love-of-my-life son came a month and a half early. (I think he wanted to take care of me ASAP!) He was 4.7 lbs and needed to stay in the hospital for over a month in the NICU. There are no words to describe how scared, worried, neurotic and heartsick I was worrying that he would be ok. I went back and forth to the hospital every day. They would not even let me stay to sleep with him.
I actually stayed sober for months, with the occasional drug binge, but no drinking. I’d moved in with mom.
I lasted about 2 years before I started the cycle all over. Again, because I am a “working alcoholic” I am able to keep working with insane hangovers and my mind so foggy I couldn’t function correctly, but hid my drinking very well.
For these 12 years, I have been in and out of relapses and in and out of AA. I have no idea why I can’t seem to get it. I use the excuse that I am “institutionally incapable” of getting sober. My therapist (the first one that I haven’t lied to about my alcoholism) recently threatened to take my son away if I didn’t stop.
No more. I am back at meetings and have 3 days clean. I had 10 days but wasn’t solid enough to stop myself from going to the package store one night.
I start over.
Today, I am humble. Today is the only day I have to think about. Right now is the only second I have to think about. If I don’t pick up that first drink, I’ll make it through this minute. If I keep thinking of only this minute, I have a chance of finally showing my son the real me and show him how special he is. One day, one second at a time.
I ask my higher power, and my 2 guardian angels, to help give me strength, hope, and determination. At the moment, I’m shaky on all 3 of those things.
I pray for all of us to embrace AA and all it teaches us and stands for. It is the only hope I have, but I want it this time! It’s about me for right now. I hope someday I can help someone else!
I am a Mental Health Counselor who is licensed in both New York (LMHC) and North Carolina (LCMHC). I have been working in the Mental Health field since 2015. I have worked in a residential setting, an outpatient program and an inpatient addictions program. I began working in Long Island, NY and then in Guelph, Ontario after moving to Canada. I have since settled in North Carolina. I have experience working with various stages of addiction, depression, anxiety, mood disorders, trauma, stages of life concerns and relationship concerns.
I tend to use a person-centered approach which simply means that I meet you where you are and work collaboratively to help you identify and work towards accomplishing goals. I will often pull from CBT when appropriate. I do encourage use of mindfulness and meditation and practice these skills in my own life. I believe in treating everyone with respect, sensitivity and compassion.
I recognize that reaching out for help is hard and commend you for taking the first step. We have professionals available who would be happy to help you move closer to reaching your goals related to your drinking concerns. You may reach these professionals by calling 877-322-2694.