I’ve been thinking about anonymity and how my own rubs me the wrong way. I am not ashamed of being sober any more than I’m ashamed of being a mother or wife or employee, but being a sober person doesn’t always fit neatly into those worlds. The fact is many people don’t understand addiction and make assumptions about recovery that are uncomfortable and untrue.
Chances are most people won’t think about my sobriety much at all. But some might think I’m weak for not being able to drink. Some might imagine the terrible things I must have done in order to need to quit in the first place.
I don’t hide the fact that I don’t drink, but I also don’t really bring it up. If someone asks about it, which only occasionally happens, I willingly and openly share my experience. Up to this point, that’s worked fine. By nature, I’m a quiet reserved person.
But here’s the thing about anonymity: at five years sober, it doesn’t sit the same anymore. When it comes to things I am grateful for, sobriety is right up there with my kids, my husband, and the little things like our health…a roof over our heads…cake. To make sobriety drop me off a block away so I can walk up and be like hey, I’m just naturally this way, well, I can do better than that.
Although, come to think of, naturally is exactly what it is. Take the booze away, see what you can be.
The timing on this is kind of perfect since September is National Recovery Month. Even guacamole gets two days out of the year, so you figure recovery deserves at least a month since it not only tastes good but also saves lives. I also just saw via wordpress notification that today is the 5-year anniversary of this here blog, which seems worth mentioning.
One small way I’ll celebrate is by posting photos of things that help me stay sober via Instagram as part of AfterParty’s Share What Helps You Stay Sober Project. Since I don’t have a separate social media account and follow real life, non-internet acquaintances, some might be surprised. Some might think differently of me. Most already think I post too many cat pictures so I’m not too worried.
Are you doing anything special to celebrate national recovery month? Please feel free to share in the comments.
Happy Recovery Month and Guacamole Days!