This June I will be 10 years sober. Ten years without a drink, a drunk, or a hangover. I don’t know if I thought I’d last this long on the day I quit, but now it seems too long for what it felt like. It went by too fast, like times does, and felt too easy in retrospect. That got me curious about what it was like in the early days, which fortunately or unfortunately I can go back and read about because this blog is also 10 years old.
I also wanted to do something special to celebrate 10 years sober. In the first year, I went to AA meetings and took coins. I remember how good it felt to get the 1 month coin and then I remember the 3 month, 9 month, and 1 year coins, though there were others in between. I still have them.
But I stopped going to meetings, and what I remember is the disdain some long-timers had for people who just showed up on year anniversaries to take coins. One woman I respected felt it gave the impression you didn’t really need AA to get or stay sober. I happen to know that is true for some. And then there are people with 1 year or 10 or even 25+ years who go to meetings. They go because it helps them stay sober or because they are driven by a higher purpose.
It’s only because of those with sobriety that meetings work. Who would run meetings if everyone was a newcomer? Who would give newcomers hope that it works, that sobriety is better than drinking?
To celebrate 10 years, I thought it would be fun (for me) to go back to posts from the early days of sobriety. Do I remember feeling whatever way I was feeling? Do I still feel that way? Does anything surprise me, or do I know better now?
It’s the clip show of blogs. But I miss writing and the connections that came from it. For added fun, I will include old photos from the approximate time of each post because I’ve also had an instagram 10 years. I have shoes older than that, but I’ll leave them out of this.
I started this blog about two months into sobriety. My first post was titled Am I an alcholic? I always considered myself a careful speller, so it’s funny that it took me ten years to catch that typo. It’s like looking at old wedding photos and noticing your slip was showing or your fly was down.
The post itself is short and the jist is that other people might tell you that you drink too much, but it’s up to you to decide if you’re an alcholic/alcoholic. I was kind of hung on up the A word back then.
This was from my second blog post, which incidentally posted on the same day as the first. I had no readers at that point but a lot to say:
I know this has been done before: the diary of a drunk housewife/mom/functioning member of society.
So why am I so excited to blog about my recovery? I really don’t know. But I am.
I have just over 60 days of sobriety right now, which to veterans in the twelve-step world is little more than a drop in the bucket, though something to hold close and tightly and be incredibly proud of.
To people who are still drinking but want to stop, it’s a pretty significant chunk of time.
To those who are still drinking and don’t want to stop, it’s a ridiculous amount of time.
I’ve been all three of the above, so that seems like a good topic to blog about next…
Would I be a veteran now? I think so. Do I consider 60 days a drop in the bucket? That depends. If you’re talking about 60 regular days, as in two months on a calendar in any given year, then yes, that is a drop in the bucket. You sneeze and it’s gone and two more months are up at bat.
But 60 days of sober time is like a million years. Even though 10 years flew by, those first 60 days were slowed down frame by frame so that I remember more bits and pieces compared to any other two-month period of my life. Same applies to the first 30 days sober and the first two weeks and the first 24 hours. They are sharper and clearer, either from fear and discomfort or hope or just the miracle of not-drinking.
Up Next: Nirvana or lack thereof, two readers, and an unaddressed 3-month absence from blogging. I must have been getting busy getting sober.