We all have *firsts*. First kiss. First concert. First apartment. First airplane ride. First fight. First sip of coffee. First time lying. First time laughing. First birthday party. First day at college. I could go on and on about all the firsts we have in our lives, but it would take all day.
Every single first becomes part of your life. They serve a purpose in molding who we are.
Well, what if you basically slept through five years of firsts?
I did that.
Alcohol consumed me and made me forget. There was no room to try new things or experience any firsts, because alcohol selfish. Alcohol takes away all those happy memories. Alcohol wants you to hide your emotions. Alcohol wants you to reach that bottom of the bottle. Alcohol is a real fucking jerk.
I didn’t want to feel anything. Happy or sad. I just wanted to be happy and thought that the only route to that emotion was alcohol. I just stuffed it way, way down.
Then I exploded. You can’t go on like that forever.
The first day of sobriety. On that first day, I knew I had to deal with some shit and it wasn’t going to be easy. But, I was sober. I went to my first AA meeting and immediately I was surrounded with other women like me. Women who had realized how I felt. I felt relief. I felt shame. I felt anger. I felt accepted. I felt love.
I felt emotions that made me realize that I was, indeed, an alcoholic.
I felt. I felt for the first time in along time. I opened up my heart and let myself feel everything.
I felt comfort when I ran into my husbands arms after sobbing and shaking with fear. I felt scared saying goodbye to my best friend, alcohol. I cried so hard, I popped blood vessels around my eye.
I felt confident when I didn’t relapse on vacation. I felt joy when I watched my daughters in the sand and ocean. I said to myself, ” I am sober. I can feel these things. I can make memories again.”
I felt shock and disbelief when my youngest daughter took off her diaper and chucked it at my head. I felt silly, because it was kind of hilarious that she chose to do that.
I felt calm when we hosted Easter at our house this year. It was my first sober holiday. I expected to be anxious, but I felt peace. I knew I could get through it. I felt like God was holding my hand, keeping me safe from that first drink.
I felt excited to watch my beautiful five year old graduate preschool. I’ll remember her being that little forever. I felt proud as I watched her on stage during her dance recital.I felt so much happiness at her birthday party. Birthday parties are tricky. I always thought birthday parties were actually for the moms who gave birth and deserved a drink. I would fill my cup up with wine as much as possible. I would then start a fight with my husband and black out.
I felt thankful that I was able to see her blow out her candles on her cake.
I felt safe knowing that my Higher Power was with me at all times, and lost all feelings of wanting a drink that day.
I can’t go back. I can’t rewind and experience my firsts from the past. All I can do is, try to feel and express every emotion that pops up. My sobriety helps me see things with clear eyes. I take it day by day. I know that there will be hundreds of new experiences to see and feel for the rest of my life. I welcome it. I’m open.
Bring it on.