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I am free. I am free today and every day I choose not to drink. What a beautiful thing.
Today I am five years sober*, and it brings up many, many emotions. Do you know one emotion that does not come up? Regret. There is not a single day in the last five years that I regret NOT drinking.
Not when the principal at our son’s preschool shamed us as parents.
Not through my father’s death.
Not when our son was diagnosed with autism.
Not through family strife.
Five years of some really really hard shit. And alcohol would have made everything markedly worse.
Problems do not go away when you quit drinking. But their magnitude is remarkably less intense. The earthquakes are less foreboding. Your structure is more fortified to withstand seismic shifts altogether. Aftershocks subside or cease altogether.
In five years, I have grown more emotionally than in 20 years of my drinking history. While I have been in therapy and taking antidepressants since age 16, on and off, only now I am finally healing. Alcohol was a barrier to my inner-healing for as long as I drank. Only by quitting can all my effort settle in and truly nourish me.
And my body is so thirsty to heal. It’s a sponge. I can’t get enough. Things I couldn’t stand in my drinking days feel like home to me now.
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