I felt the need to post an inspiring message to new members of the group I belong to.  I wanted to share it here:

(warning, insanely long post ahead)

Hey newbies!

**If you are still drinking, keep reading, listening and watching.  I joined Cafe RE a couple of weeks before quitting.  I felt like an imposter as I read, read and occasionally commented.  I was in disbelief of the happiness people were finding in their sobriety.  And the vacation photos were unreal!  Like.. people could actually stay sober while vacationing?  Who would have thunk that the ocean and the mountains were SO much more vivid while sober and not drunk or hungover!

**If you are a day or days sober, HANG in there.  It is HARD.  On my 3rd sober day, I sobbed in my husband’s arms when he got home.  NOT because it was my late mother’s birthday and I missed her– but because I was making dinner and wanted a drink SO bad (how pathetic is that??  I do know that my angel mom understood the situation and is proud of me).   Luckily with his support, I did not fill my cup, ate dinner and took a walk and felt grateful and alive for the first time in months.  It DOES get better!

**If you are a week or a few weeks sober, still HANG in there!!  Weeks 2-3 were the worst for me!  I was used to staying up late and getting up early and managing.  Suddenly I was EXHAUSTED!!!  This wasn’t how it was supposed to be.  I was like 2 weeks totally clean, I should be bouncing with energy not going to bed at 9 and still requiring a nap after work!  I was unable to see the benefits I was reaping of not drinking at that point in time.  My therapist helped me see this (if you don’t have a therapist– get one if possible– or at least a neutral person to vent to).  It seemed a that point in time, that alcohol gave me superpowers and if that’s what it took , then that’s what I should be drinking.  Ooooh, how alcohol and our alcoholic voice lies to us!!!   Hang in there, don’t give in to your voice.  You should be building a tool box by now and if you don’t know what I’m talking about then feel free to pm me.

**If you are a month or a few months sober, then I hope you are enjoying life!  This is where I’m at right now.  While I had my first sober birthday since teenage years (AND it was my 40th AND on St. Patty’s day– the biggest drinking day of the year) and my first sober vacation, I’m realizing that there are still many firsts to come.  As the firsts come and go, I’m approaching each one with less anxiety and more confidence and excitement.  I accept that I don’t know what tomorrow will bring and I am still taking it one day, one moment at a time.

I don’t know why I felt compelled to write this.  I think because if there is hope for me, then there is hope for anyone who has the desire to quit.  It took me a good 9 months from the time I realized that I had a problem and COULDN’T quite to the time that I became determined to make it through the first 3 days, which turned into a week and then more.  BTW.. I didn’t see a therapist until I was about 2 weeks sober.  So really it was listening to the podcasts and reading Cafe RE facebook posts that gave me the confidence and knowledge to quit.

My last drink was 2/11/17.  While I’m a much happier and healthy person, it isn’t always easy.  I still have tough days and tough weeks sometimes.  Is it worth it?  ALWAYS!!  Best advice from here:  No one ever woke up regretting not drinking!!  Ironically, some things that I dreaded most in the beginning are things I cherish most right now (like sober weekends– they are priceless!!!).

You can do it and you are worth it!  Happy sober Sunday 🙂