S.L.I.P.’ed – But it’s not Day One Ever Again

I achieved 277 consecutive days AF and then on May 17th I decided to join my fiance and had some drinks… and those turned into a string of 9 days of being off course. I re-started my count on May 26th – but do not call it “Day One” anymore.

Day one was back in 2013 when I first tried this thing called sobriety as I realized I wanted to shift my relationship with ‘da booze and thus created this blog.

The blog is my accountability and journal keeping of the experiences along the way. What I can say is that since December 16, 2016 when I finally completed my FIRST 100 consecutive days sober – I felt on top of the world. I had been trying since 2013 and never managed to string it along … but then it happened. I then launched the group on Facebook “Lose ‘da Booze 100 Day Success Group” to do a 2nd 100 consecutive days AF. I achieved that in April of 2017 and felt amazing !

Then SLIP happened – I fell off track for about 5 months and jumped back on for 174 consecutive Days AF… and slipped off again…

And now this latest one. Do you see a pattern? And by that I mean do you see how better is better. I remember back in 2015 I believe when I only had a TOTAL of 65 Days AF in the entire year!!

I did declare that I wanted to retire this habit once and for all but I guess I’m still a work in progress but each experience I believe is making me stronger and wiser. It’s not easy to share the slip – but I believe in transparency and accountability as a means of being honest with myself most of all.

When we hide or pull back – that’s when bigger problems usually come into play. So yup – I’m back on board and have not lost the “TROPHY” of 277 Days… and COUNTING as I build up the next step on the journey! Want to follow my journey? Check out my public page on Facebook for daily inspiration Healthy4Life with Helene (follow and hit ‘like’) or check out my website as I am also now a Certified Wellness Coach (another dream achieved in December 2018 as part of this forward progress/journey)!!

9 Months AF – Giving Birth to a New Life!

The day has arrived! Just like when you count down to the end of a pregnancy and complete the gestation… the work begins on forming this new life and learning to now focus on growing in other ways!

Sobriety is like a baby and it needs day to day attention. You must guard it with your life and nurture it consistently. There are days when it may require more attention than others. There are times when life seems to be sailing along smoothly and you barely notice a difference and other days where the waters are rougher and you find yourself looking back to old habits and means of coping.

My personal experience has been different this time when I compare it to my other longer stretches of the TWO first 100 days AF. The results that I achieved from the first stretch do not compare to this longer stretch and what I’ve accepted is that I make my own destiny by the choices I make.

What I can fess up to is that I have had this attitude of simply giving in to my sugar cravings for comfort and have discovered how it unearthed the once childhood issues I had with emtional eating that then graduated to coping with alcohol.

I now know that the work to stay the course with my own sobriety involves doing the work to heal the WHY I go to masking my emotions and being more mindful.

The transference of addictions is a very common thing – thus I switched from booze to junk foods and now am ready to begin a new path with a new focus. As I continue being AF – I now intend to focus on shifting my go to habits to the coping mechanisms that I know will help me to heal at a deeper level and allow me to reach the happy weight that will be mine again!

No more masking of emotions. Yes to working out the stress, frustrations and anger with some good workouts! Yes to using meditation, the support networks and tools I’ve gathered along the way to allow me to feel good in my skin again!

Don’t get me wrong – I feel great and very proud of this milestone that once felt unreachable. It’s THIS success that proves to me that I can do anything I set my mind to so while I continue my AF life – so do I now shift my focus to reaching my 53rd birthday in September and One Year AF milestone standing that much taller and that much wiser!

100 Days to One Year!

Today is day 265 AF – and I’m now 100 Days away from achieving my one year milestone! This is iconic for me as I started with the goal to achieve 100 Days AF … and now I’m counting backwards to achieving the full year AF.

I have been reading a lot and reflecting on the posts in our groups (online Facebook groups that support an AF lifestyle) and it seems that what I’m experiencing with the stronger urges of late is not unusual. As we work to live a sober life – there are phases that come through. Early on the desire to be AF is strong as the memories of why we chose to take the route is fresh in our minds (with alcohol still in our bodies and making us feel like crap). Later in the journey – when we’ve completely detoxed and feel better, we start to romanticize that maybe we can allow ourselves drinks again.

I made a choice on my 50th birthday to live a life without booze and believe in it so much that I created a forum with my Lose ‘da Booze 100 Day Success Group for others to join in as there is strength in numbers. I also joined Annie Grace’s groups (This Naked Mind and The Alcohol Experiment) as additional sober tools to help me on the journey.

I toyed with moderation in between some successful 100 days and then on August 12th – before my 52nd birthday decided that 40 years of booze in my life was enough! I wake up this morning following a very difficult day with super strong urges to cave in… and the feeling you get the morning after when you DON’T cave in is priceless! That’s what I have to bottle and remind myself of the next time an urge comes a calling.

Thank you to all who cheered for me and posted comments of support! Reading that I was someone you looked up to also made a huge difference as there are times when I am not sure what I’m doing is that great… but always hoped that perhaps I’d inspire others. So here’s to my NEW countdown of 100 Days… to ONE year of NO BOOZE!! #LoseDaBooze

In the end – you are doing this for YOU and no one else! You are so worth it!

Happiness is an inside job

As I near my 9 month milestone I find myself back to a place of questioning so much again. I’m writing this for my own accountability and thought process and perhaps to share that sobriety is something you need to work at every single day.

I’ve had many cravings and even instances of walking into the liquor store and touching the bottle of my drink of choice thinking it might be ok to just let go and allow myself the break.

Things have been difficult of late with many stressors sucking at my energy and I’m finding my motivation is wavering. While I always try to put up a good front for everyone else, I feel like I need to take a bit of a step back to WHY I came to be here in the first place.

I’ve been AF for 263 days … nearly 9 months and it’s like when you’re coming to ‘term’ with a baby inside of you – you want it to end or you want to break free and get your body back! I’ve been struggling with emotional eating and my weight loss has stalled and I’ve even regained over the past month and I’m feeling this funk… but I know from experience – it’s about pushing through it.

It may mean taking a break. Giving myself some down time. Unplugging and getting a new perspective again. I’m off today and sitting here debating about what to do with this day … and so far I’ve done my usual check ins with my groups and decided to write a blog to share to my Lose ‘da Booze and This Naked Mind and The Alcohol Experiment age 50+ group.

It’s Friday and yup – it’s the day many struggle with more when it comes to new sobriety as it’s viewed as a time to let go and unwind… HOW I do this has changed over the course of my stretch. My resolve to be done for good 100% with booze has been eaten away with the strong urges and cravings but I’m reminded by my friends that I’ve come so far…

I guess I’m just tired. Thankfully it’s a NEW moon tomorrow and I hope to reset intentions and goals with it. I’m hoping to view my 9 month milestone as the creation of a NEW life in sobriety – all the while understanding that it’s an ongoing growth and learning process. I may slip, trip and fall here and there (right now with my motivation to exercise and emotional eating) but I’m not giving up and it’s because of the community of support in the groups that I stay the course.

Working to make this a successful day – starting with a shower to freshen up and wash away this negative energy and embrace my day off with gratitude and make the most of it instead of wasting it away sitting in the darkness binge watching Netflix all the while binge eating which has been happening too much this past week.

I became a health/wellness coach because through my own journey I wanted to share my real honest path and hopefully inspire others to not give up either! No matter what the day brings – no one can take away my success so far and if I stop counting consecutive days and look at my track record and improvement since 2013 when I first started with only 65 days AF in an entire year… I’ve come a long way baby!!