Today I am two years sober from alcohol.
My life feels natural and authentic without alcohol. Upon reaching my first year of sobriety I felt relieved that I had made it to my first year. The second year feels like this is my new normal. I have crafted a life free from alcohol that I thrive in and am comfortable in.
To free myself from alcohol has created a new lease to conquer depression and anxiety. Mental illness will not win. I have changed but I am still the same person, just an even more rock star kick-ass version of who I was before.
I see my goals through a new lens where there is vibrancy in my thoughts and a bounce in my actions. I take myself a lot more seriously now and I move with assurance. When I chose to do something, I’m going to do it. I’ve clearly shown myself that I have what it takes.
I purchased my airplane tickets to hike a section of the Appalachian Trail in July. The AT is my reward for all that I have put in for the last two years. The AT will be an experience that will shape me, both on and off the trail. I will move one foot in front of the other. It’s my mental mindset that will lead the way, just like the last two years have been. One foot in front of the other, rest when I need and climb when I can, just like the last two years have been.
I owe a debt of gratitude to the people in my village who have helped me to be where I am today. I chose not to drink alcohol anymore and it is the support along the way that made this monumental task become a reality. Everyone needs a squad rooting for them.
- My husband who is just a downright incredible human being full of kindness, love, and devotion
- My therapist who has helped me to find answers by guiding me to look inward and face my hard truths
- My daughter who makes me laugh and is one of the reasons why I continue to grow. I want to show her what strength looks like and know that in spite of the cards you have been dealt, with choice and perseverance, life can be what you want it to be
- My close friends who are always near by to both listen when difficultly and challenges arise and to celebrate when the good times roll
- My dogs who I love to the moon and back
- My manager who I opened up to about my depression, anxiety, and addiction and met me with compassion and understanding. My co-workers who make going to work everyday a good time
- The readers of this blog. This is a place for me to advocate for mental health and wellness and writing is therapeutic for me
- The members of Prairie Girl Backpackers. I have formed new networks and relationships with people who have the outdoors as a common interest
- I choose to only surround myself with positive and uplifting people so if you are reading this, I thank you too because you are part of my village
Year two will continue just the way it started: determination for my goals, a quest for new experiences and adventures in nature, faith and belief in myself, and continued efforts to remove the stigma surrounding mental illness.