Alcohol was a shiny star in my life for over 20 years. Life was big, fun, full of friends & achievement. Fast forward to my 30’s. As my responsibilities grew, that star faded - despite how it might have looked from the outside. Work, family & my social life all suffered. My zest for life was replaced with anxiety, fear & shame. I wanted to hide – from everything, everyone and myself. I pushed through for 5 years & gave up alcohol for long stretches – only to slip back – where it was always worse. I was exhausted from pretending everything was ‘ok’. Deep down, I knew my life would be better if I gave away drinking altogether. But how to stop, and stay stopped’ was daunting.
I have been living alcohol-free for around six years. My relationship with myself, the people I love and the world around me is gentler, and so much more genuine. I am calmer, more present in my life and far less overwhelmed. I still have days where fear shows up. But for the most part I can use new skills, sit with discomfort and challenge my thinking. I can front up. Today I avoid labels that I find unhelpful. I recognise my strengths and embrace my imperfections. It is such a relief and joy to wake up in the morning feeling good about my life and future.