Kate's 1500 Day Blog
Aug 31, 2020
What has 1500 days taught me? I could do exhaustive lists …better sleep, less anxiety, greater self-respect and peace of mind, a sense of purpose, sober besties, a feeling of genuinely belonging -( in the sober community as opposed to fitting in outside) but in this relatively short time, compared with how long I have been alive I think the most significant think I have learned from treading this extraordinary sober path day in day out for the last 1500 days unbroken is that slowly I have learnt to look after myself.
I was living, functioning, doing pretty well by external measures - jobs, houses, kids, husband I adore, but inside there was still a disconnect and confusion, despite having been on the sober path before for extended periods of time. So this time , as I called time on the great booze bully and dragged myself out of the boxing ring once I again, I called time on disconnecting from myself and from listening to other people’s opinions over my own.
These were: the booze giants, advertising, normative drinking culture, mummy wine memes, well-meaning friends, concerned family, the voices that said ‘you’ll be fine with one’, ‘you have proved you don’t have a problem.’ It was the doctor who told me to count units, and the counsellor who drank told me to tell a bottle of beer I love it, to change my relationship with alcohol. It was calling BS on Facebook and even on some voices within the sober community who thought their path was the only path.
It was accepting that some friends drifted away while some came shining to the forefront, it was cancelling things if I felt my introversion or hormones or energy levels required it, it was saying NO to my family and friends and deadlines and opportunities if it was too much or did not align with my gut. It’s been following my true north with curiosity and compassion for myself if some daysI can’t even be bothered to think about a north.
When I read back, this that sounds like a lot of work but it truth it was more like an unfolding and a gradual letting go. Or as you just do each day, under the surface the seismic or micro shifts are happening to make you a happier healthier you. They are, I guess, the gifts of sobriety. And these come even if you haven’t a had a ‘glorious rock bottom’, a drama story, a rags to riches moment … these come by us choosing it and living it and hopefully choosing it earlier than the outside tells us is socially acceptable.
To know that our sobriety is a beautiful choice rather than a sad consequence feels far away at the beginning but that is what it is. And maybe it’s both. Life is light and shade. Sobriety is joy and work and feeling the feels and making friends - its a way of plugging into our one precious life and really looking after ourselves as we travel.
So today 1500 I think about that and it seems surreal - a number I could not have imagined at the start, a number that I should be proud of but in it just another sober day in my sober life. It feels like a long time and a short time, such is the kind of beautiful profound shift I think we get in sobriety - to seeing this as a life long journey of discovery as opposed to just getting through the day.
If you’re early days - keep going - you cannot believe the riches that are waiting for you as you fill your tool kits full of ways to make you feel happier and better.
Love Kate x