Day 5 and 100 Hours

These apps are the cat’s meow! The one showing 100 Hours is EasyQuit Drinking (which I downloaded on my android phone) and the other is Sober Time. They are #sobertools that keep me motivated!

Today has been an incredible day! I was on this natural HIGH – so excited about life without booze and all the possibilities ahead of me. My mind has been racing and I’m coming up with tons of ideas of things I want to do!

The Universe seems to be delivering things to me that are timed so right. I read an article on Mind Body Green about someones account of the 10 things she learned by going AF for 100 Days. I did a similar account in my blog 2nd 100 Days Completed and with my current journey and this blog and the group, I plan on created an even bigger list – of all the benefits of NOT drinking.

It’s so freeing when my mind is no longer even contemplating the decision – it’s like I have this wide open space and I’m filling it with so many great positive possibilities of goals and dreams I want to fulfill.

When I compare this to how I was feeling just one week ago – barely motivated to get up. Hitting the snooze button and wasting my life away sitting on a couch watching TV. I’ve missed out on too much time – NO MORE!

So my groups – on Facebook and SparkPeople – I have been connected with some of the members for some time and we’ve grown this bond/connection and one of those dreams is to meet in person so I’m working on that as I plan on traveling for my daughter so she can visit someone she connected with that has been helping her in her eating disorder recovery. I’m excited – just as excited as if this was one of my yearly sunny destination getaways (which I’m not doing this year). I’m going to make my own sunshine with these amazing souls I’ve connected with on this journey and I can’t wait to finalize details.

The opposite of addiction is connection and honestly that’s what I feel was a HUGE missing link. A group of people who really understand this issue – one that is now becoming more public but still needs work. It’s also an issue that many don’t like to talk about or deny… but I’m no longer hiding it and that in of itself is also freeing!

And so I wind down another incredible day – worked out this morning and this evening and MAN am I feeling great! Working out is really my cure and ‘medicine’.

And so again … ending this day in Gratitude:

  1. For my loving Fiance who is supportive of all of my dreams and goals
  2. For my daughter who is doing better on her journey to healing her eating disorder
  3. For my friends, colleagues and LDB and SP family!
  4. And this bonus one again … this affirmation about how spending our life our OWN way is the ONE Success I am living and LOVING!! In peace, joy and love!

Once You Make the Decision…

I came across a great article today Willpower Doesn’t Work: Here’s How to Actually Change Your Life and it re-affirmed something that I already kind of figured out. When I first completed my FIRST 100 consecutive days AF – something I had tried to do for years before – the difference was that I was 100% committed and knew it was something I really REALLY wanted. I went public about it and shared on social media – openly with friends (even though I feared some might heckle me). In the end – when we want to achieve a goal it’s for US that we are doing it – no one else.

Once the decision was made, while there were difficult moments and cravings, I stuck to my guns and got through it. Just as I KNOW I will do the same this time as I have openly advertised through my facebook page/ad that I’m going to go a FULL year without ‘da booze!

By setting this up – and having the amazing accountability and support through the group that I created, my energy is driven to succeed – no if’s and’s or but’s! This is a non-negotiable and my WHY is a long list that basically boils down to wanting to live a healthy life – mind, body and soul!

Too many times alcohol has robbed me of moments or put me at risk or damaged relationships. As a child I also witnessed how the adults in my life behaved badly under the influence and I simply don’t want to live that way. My dream is to help others who are struggling with this issue that so many don’t like to talk about.

It’s amazing how I now often bring it up in conversation without any fear as I openly explain why I’m doing this and how I had issues with it. My decision to just commit to one year at this point is simply my next step experience and after I complete it – I will then decide what’s next.

I know from previous experiences that going back to alcohol does not bring me the joy, pride and satisfaction that I have when I am committed to my health goals. The simple short lived buzz just isn’t worth all the ‘after effects’ that come with it. I am super thrilled that my last hangover was September 2nd – before I celebrated my 51st Birthday and I look forward to how the days will go… simply one day at a time.

Today was good. I am now completing Day 3 so overall feeling pretty good. The only tough part is my sleep is still not great so I am feeling tired tonight. Still have the night sweats. I managed to get my butt out of bed at 4am to get back to my routine of reading positive affirmations and sharing on Facebook with my groups and on my like page. I got a 20mins workout in and started my day. Ate relatively healthy – I do allow myself some ‘give’ while cutting out the alcohol at first as sugar cravings usually kick in but today kept it to one single snack size serving of a Brookside and had a few chips. Other than that – pretty proud of my eating (feeling more in control of that already again). I also got a walk in at lunch and connected with a colleague that joined the Health Bet I organized. It was my first time meeting her and we chatted and found we had so much in common (as her daughter aged 15 had very similar mental health issues as my daughter had) – it was great to be able to exchange our experiences. Then when I got home – my daughter wanted to come back to town so my fiance drove her. I stayed back and made a nice soup for our lunches and made his dinner. Took care of the rabbit (took her out on the leash outside for a hop around) and here I am now winding down… aiming to get logged off technology by 9 or 9:15pm to read my next Chapter of The Power of Now (as I’ve set a goal to read the numerous great books I have purchased through the years and never read).

So I close off the day with my Gratitude List…

  1. I’m grateful for my sobriety and my Lose ‘da Booze Group (or family as we’ve come to call ourselves)
  2. I’m grateful for my workplace and my passion for healthy active living with Day 1 of the September Health Bet I organized and how it’s helping to motivate others to move more
  3. I’m grateful for my health and being able to workout (even though I’m a bit sore – it’s the hurt so good kind of thing)

My BIGGEST Reason WHY

This right here is my BIGGEST reason why I am choosing to Lose ‘da Booze for an entire year! The picture to the left was after my 2nd 100 Day Challenge and I was down 45lbs from my starting heaviest weight in January 2016. The picture on the right is me today – having regained 33 of those 45lbs and standing at 102 days of drinking in 2017. That happened in just 5 short months!!

I initially hoped to reach 300 days AF but when that didn’t happen – I made a commitment to ensure I at least did better than last year. In 2016 I had 209 days AF and by ending this year and going into next year AF – I will beat that number.

My health suffers on so many levels when I choose to drink. My mental health has deteriorated along with some outside stressors beyond my control. I was struggling daily with low self-esteem and low self-confidence and it was spiraling… I’d drink, then choose to do nothing about it and just zoned out and avoided life in general – raising my anxieties even further. My relationships also suffer as I withdraw and don’t feel like doing much. I miss out on so many activities and it can’t continue this way. I need to be a role model for my daugthers who also suffer from mental health issues.

At the beginning it’s tough to stay sober and face the feelings in a raw state but I know it’s very much what I need to do to get back to a place where I am going to be happier. The weight gain just makes me feel so yuck on so many levels. My clothes are fitting tight again. I’m not comfortable in my own skin and my energy levels feel it big time too.

It’s time to shift the tide back to where I was happy and AF at day 100 – going beyond this time to really allow my body to get physically healthy. I have yo-yo’d with my weigh because of emotional eating and drinking and now I need to learn to cope in other ways. With the sober tools that I’ve been gathering, including our Lose ‘da Booze family – I know I can achieve this.

My WHY is to simply live my best life and I’ve learned in the first 50 years of my life that ‘da booze was preventing that from happening. So here’s to getting back to the habits that will make me smile more and be feeling good in my skin again! www.befitspirited.ca

Day 1 of 365 – Happy Birthday to ME!

Today is the day I begin my ONE year journey of losing ‘da booze in my life. A full cycle/year of events and experiences without alcohol. As many of you know if you’ve been following me – I finally achieved the goal of doing 100 consecutive days AF (alcohol free) but then returned to try moderating. After each 100 (I completed two) – I slid back to old patterns. This time I decided I needed to take more time off – to really give myself a clear view of what life without alcohol can be like and perhaps once the year is up – I may opt to never drink again (but I always fear/hesitate saying ‘never’).

I’m thrilled to have my group for support – on Facebook and through SparkPeople. Knowing I’m not alone in the journey and can vent and share my trials or triumphs makes a HUGE difference!

I had my last drink abound 9pm last night – passed out on the couch – that’s how many I had I guess … woke up at 11:25pm to go to bed and saw the full drink next to me and just dumped it down the sink.

Woke up this morning feeling a bit shaky and ill from the mixing of booze I had – as I wanted to get my fill and be DONE with it!

I did my weigh in and measurements and I will take some photos too in order to document my journey as it relates to my health and well being as well. I will use this blog to journal out how I’m feeling.

Today’s plan is simply to go to town and get groceries. We are going to my favorite restaurant for dinner. And I plan on getting a workout done at some point today. I know during my previous AF stretches – the working out was my saving grace as it helped to alleviate some stress and anxiety and released some ‘good feeling’ endorphins.

So here’s to DAY 1 of 365 – a birthday gift of health that I am giving myself.

Ready to Lose ‘da Booze? September RELAUNCH!

September arrives tomorrow and with it the wave of new beginnings, re-starts and continuation of those who have already been losing ‘da booze beyond their 100 Days!

Some are starting on the 1st – some on the 3rd (that is my date) and others on the 5th. This group is now secret, but if you’d like an invite, you can always message me via my Facebook page and I’d be happy to share more.

Better is better and doing it with others is so much BETTER! I hope to have you follow along on this next level journey I am embarking on of going a FULL year without alcohol!

 

Homework PRE-CHALLENGE to Losing ‘da Booze! #SoberTools

As I prepare to relaunch into my alcohol free sober state… I am arming myself with #sobertools and going to recommend a few here for you. I am building a list of resources and want to keep adding to it (I’ve only just begun)…

What I’ve assigned as HOMEWORK assignment one for those wishing to join in the next challenge in September is to watch this documentary: The Truth About Alcohol and also perhaps sign up to do the FREE workshop offered by Annie Grace (author of This Naked Mind and one of the KEY resources that helped so many in our group): How To Control Alcohol

What I tell anyone starting this type of challenge is to NOT overwhelm yourself and focus FIRST on losing ‘da booze. You can give in to other ‘cravings’ at first – I say for the first 30 days (as many will start craving sugar as they cut out alcohol). Once you’ve successfully passed the 30 days, I’ll then start posting links/suggestions on re-setting in other ways in your life to get healthier!

If you need more reasons to figure out WHY this is a challenge you want to join in – here are a few other links to resources – to help you make your decision or build your resolve:

WHY Lose ‘da Booze (motivation, articles and resources to show you WHY you should stop or cut down on alcohol)

To join our ‘secret’ group – send a request to me via message to my Facebook Page (and follow me there if you’d like for daily inspiration/motivation as well). LoseDaBooze

100 Day Challenge – Starting September 5th

I’m counting down … to my NEXT 100 Day Challenge starting September 5th and hoping to have others join me as I start my personal third 100 Day Challenge and beyond!!

After a TON of stuff happening, I can honestly say I’m craving this NEW beginning and re-launch into a space where I feel so much better… without ‘da booze in my life! Vacation, life stress, summer socials, weddings – I am so READY to get back to being FREE of alcohol again and considering making my 51st year of life mostly AF!

I celebrate my last ‘Windup’ Weekend including birthday celebrations September 1 to the 3rd… and when I return home on the 4th it’s BACK to LDB (Lose ‘da Booze) school! It’s time to get back to clarity, freedom, health, weight loss, feeling good, productive and PROUD me! It’s amazing what allowing alcohol back in leads to and as we age, how our body is not so quick to bounce back!

For those who are wondering why I’m not starting before then – well it’s an allowance I’m giving myself. Prep time if you will. I have continued to be mindful of my intake and accountable in my group and inspired to JUMP back in with others who have gone beyond their 100 days and continue to reap so many amazing health and life benefits!

If you are ready to change your life… to allow more GOOD into it… to have more time to do great things… then JOIN US!! We have an ongoing group of members who have taken the 100 Day challenge. You can start at any time – so long as you commit to doing at least 100 consecutive days without ‘da booze.

Some members have joined and haven’t been able to make it just yet – but are gaining strength and inspiration from the group. This is a safe place – a closed group, where we can share our stories and where we find that we are not alone in this quest to make this change in our lives. Sober is the new COOL movement and it’s one worth investing your time in! For some – saying forever is intimidating… but say for 100 days… give it a try… see how you feel after those 100 days and decide then what you want to do.

Personally – I know that I need a longer break this time so I’m going to stretch my 100 days through the Christmas holidays into 2018 and aiming to have ONE YEAR without ‘da booze. I’m stepping up my game and goals and determined to achieve this! I never thought I could do the 100 and now I know – with the support of the group… I CAN DO THIS!! And so can you!! I hope to see you there!!

Here are the results from my 2nd 100 Day Challenge – Face to Face Results!

Every Day is a New Life

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There’s such beauty in the beginning of each day – no matter what yesterday was. I’m trucking along on Day 4 AF … and while it’s early in the game and I’ve been here before many times, I’m savoring each day, each sober moment.

I have a hangover this morning – but not the kind you think of. It’s a migraine one – that lingering headache is still there (day 2). It bothers me because it’s been so long since I’ve had one (and I had them frequently before). I know part of the reason I had frequent headaches before was my excessive drinking which made me be ‘unhealthy’ in other ways (eating bad foods, not working out, etc.). I do also acknowledge that part of the headache is also related to the great stressors I’m experiencing with my kids. I got another ‘bomb’ dropped on me yesterday with my 17 year old telling me about an incident that happened to her when she was 15. It was surreal to hear it and I’m still processing it and will be for a while as we work through this one now.

I thank GOD that each day is a new life because it means no matter what happened yesterday or in my daughter’s case 2 years ago – there’s hope in a better and brighter future. With help (counseling) and support through family/friends and in my case, with this sober blogging world, I will get through this.

I sometimes question about this whole ‘being tested’ notion and wonder at times – ok God … enough with the testing to see how much I can handle. I’m full up! I need a break and I do sincerely believe that there are GREAT things that lie ahead for me – even today on this new day. Life is what we make it – every single day – with every choice we make. Despite all the bumps in the road, I’m going to keep rolling along this sober car.

The Next 30 Years

I read a post on my team thread about how a member had lived her live with alcohol for 30 years and how she was ready to do so WITHOUT alcohol. In my case, I have been drinking since probably the age of 12 – so I have 35 years of life with alcohol and I’m ready to look ahead to seeing what perhaps living life without alcohol can be like.

While I’ll be turning 47 soon, I think my birthday will be like a new life beginning. My mom always told me life began at 40 – and I honestly believe that because the first 40 years I was learning and now with the experience, I can live a life that has true meaning – without the need for alcohol to enjoy life.

It’s a great leap this sober revolution if you will – but I think it’s catching on with many. Like cigarette smoking (which I never indulged in) was so glamorized and now so looked upon as gross (I always felt it was gross) – perhaps the glamour surrounding alcohol is starting to fade – at least for me it is. For the little relief or buzz I get from it – the after math of guilt for caving in, for spending the money, for not being clear headed enough to deal with real life – it’s become less appealing to me.

What is becoming appealing to me is the prospect of how I will feel being sober for a length of time and discovering my SELF more. Perhaps pursuing things I never felt worthy of doing before and taking more risks, learning new things, becoming involved in new activities and hobbies. I know in order to stick this out – I need to replace the habit of booze with another activity.

While I know there will be many social situations involving or around alcohol, I also know it doesn’t mean I have to have some. I can opt for AF options and still be a part of those events.

It will be interesting to see what the next 30 years of life for me will be. Starting with this move at the end of September – one that I really decided upon in a bit of a whim – but that has turned out to be a great decision… I think life is on an upswing despite the many at home challenges with my girls. Being sober will keep me strong through it all.

Close Call…

Yesterday might have been the hardest day for me since I can remember with the cravings and the ‘stuff’ going on. The voices started calling me around 3pm and then my 12 year old started acting up/out. It’s unnerving all that she is presenting with behavior/defiance, rudeness, and well just plain doing whatever without permission.

I managed to keep busy – even went to the store (near the liquor store) and didn’t buy anything. That was a blessing because later that night she decided to sleep out at a friend’s and with all she put me through during the day, I swear I would have reached for a drink.

Today – 3pm is rolling around and no cravings. Today I’m dealing with my oldest sending me nasty messages upset about some of the things the 12 year old is doing and basically accusing me of being a bad parent. I know it’s the voice of the ex’s mother speaking through her words (she’s spending the summer with her grandmother in Florida to get away from the ‘stress’ that is going on at home because of my youngest’s issues with self-harm and depression). Oddly enough I was going through tough times with the 17 year old in the Fall when she moved out for a couple of months – and is now threatening to do the same (move out that is).

With these issues, my upcoming move and the legal matters that I’m dealing with (which I know will stir the pot even more with the ex and everyone else), I basically have no choice but to stay sober so they can’t use that against me. So many times in the past – the arguments, the problems – they all revolved around booze. My ex would love to say – oh you must be boozing again and I can tell him I am NOT as I plan to stay sober for the next long while (not professing number of days here but I will do what I have to do to protect myself).

I never know what my youngest will do either so I need to stay sober and clear headed. It’s sure not easy single parenting, let alone one who is having so many problems.

I’m back to work on Monday and hope things will be ok as she’ll be alone at home. I have removed her IPad (that’s been the source of so many problems ever since she got it at xmas), I have limited the computer time to very minimal times when I’m not here and I have told her if she continues with the defiance, I will remove her Facebook account and take her phone away. The phone is my weapon right now because she is ‘texting’ with a boy – the first one – and removing that will prevent her from communicating with him. I have access to monitor her texting and the ability to turn it off for receiving calls after a certain time. I feel good about that.

I have to be sober because I am like ‘the police’ right now, or as my daughter puts it – I’m her stalker. One day, I hope she will see I am doing it out of love. She had a blow out yesterday and said ‘why don’t you just send me away to child protection or something – you don’t want me, no one does’. Her self-esteem and perceptions are so distorted. It takes all I have to stay calm and talk through things with her – when she is open to listening.

I pray every day that things will get better. I know when my oldest returns home, there will be some tension (she’s back Aug 20th). I have contacted the oldest’s counselor to see if I can meet with her to figure out a strategy on how best to deal with things when she is back.

I know I am not perfect but I also know that I am doing the BEST that I can, and right now that has to include being SOBER!