The last couple of weeks have been rough. Like real rough. I have been having some problems in my job, none of which I can or want to go into, thoughts of relapse, and a general feeling drowning and in completely over my head. This winter has been wreaking havoc on my mental health. I am sick of being cold, I don't want to run in the cold, I don't want to spend 45 minutes getting to the gym to run on a treadmill that I hate. So I sleep for days, eat everything I can get my hands on, and get further into my depression. I have been rapid cycling in my bi-polar. A couple days feeling like I am failing and can't get out of bed followed by a week of feeling like I can take on the world, nothing can touch me, and I can't fail at anything I try.
R asked me "why do you think you're at emotional rock bottom??? You're worse than you were when you were using?" and the answer was yes. When I was using, I didn't give a fuck. I would get stressed about not being able to pay my bills, how shitty of a parent I was, or the fact that my life was rapidly falling apart, but I would drink about it and not care. I flunked out of college, but I made the excuse, no one can work full time, go to school, and raise a kid, it's not possible. In reality, I chose to drink over going to school. When I was in the pit of my addiction, I would never attempt to start anything like Beer City Recovery so I would have never had this stress. So I really do feel like, yes this is my emotional rock bottom.
I have been taking my meds and practicing self-care as much as I can. Even if it is just brushing my teeth or changing out of my pajamas. It is a strange feeling when one part of your brain is telling you your thoughts are completely irrational and not real at all, but you just can NOT stop them from coming.
I have been looking for jobs in the recovery field and have come to a scary conclusion. I have to go back to school. A lot of the professions I want require the MCBAP certification I am working on getting AND a bachelors in social work. I just won't be able to advance in this field without it, I applied to a GVSU and FAFSA to get financial aid. The issue is, I hate school, or I think I do. The only two times I have given it the old' college try I was wasted, hungover, and didn't know how to study in those states. Hopefully, this time around I can have the clarity and desire to do this instead of bumbling around, dropping classes, or just straight flunking out.
I am leaning hard on my support system and letting them support me. My friend A has sent me two books that I am blowing through, my friend R has been giving me the tough love, B has been super supportive and giving me all the affirmation I need, and J has been snuggly, sweet, and understanding. I am beyond thankful for them and all my other friends. I want people to know that recovery is hard. 1, 2, 5 years down the road, you will still struggle. Life is a struggle. You have to focus and hold on for dear life to the genuine and positive things in your life. Let them be the life raft when you feel like you just can't make it sober another day. Let your support system love you. Let them do the things they want to show you they love you. Stop saying "I'm fine" when you all know your not. I'm just surviving is an acceptable answer when someone asks you how you are doing.
love you/stay safe
you dudes rock
In the last two weeks I have dropped my phone in water 3, THREE! times. Spent 3 days stress eating culminating in me eating an entire package of triple stuffed oreos. Went mildly crazy due to almost 2 complete weeks of snow days for the kiddo and bf. And bungled my taxes.
I also incorporated Beer City Recovery and filed papers to become a nonprofit 😳🤯
Sometimes this seems insane to me. Twoish years ago I was spending two days a week in jail for a month, going insane trying to make it to all my court ordered recovery, probation, and therapy meetings, and barley holding my head above water. The thing that kept me going were BCR meetings (and my babes). I was holding them weekly at that time, and days that people came to meetings made my week. Sometimes no one came to meetings and I would get pretty depressed. But I still showed up becasue I had, and still do have, an overwhelming desire to help people in an industry I grew up in and have grown to love.
I have so many huge dreams for this group and members of the FBSI. A lot of them scare and terrify me. How am I going to raise funds to have set aside to cover the cost of detox, rehab, and therapy sessions for members? How am I going to cover the cost of meeting spaces and printing of new materials? But I have such a strong support group and have plans to meet many more people in the recovery community. The opportunity to apply for grants, score donations from local business and organizations, and always the awesome donations from individuals. I just have to keep my head up, keep grinding, and believe the people in my life when they tell me I can do this.
In 2-4 weeks I will know the fate of BCR. EEK.
My high school boyfriend, the only guy I had every loved, the guy I wanted to marry had just called and told me he slept with my best friends little sister the week prior at his going away party. My roommate suggested we drink about it.
That’s what we did.
We drank about things.
Good nights at work.
Bad nights at work.
You get the picture. Our house was the one that was never locked, always had beer in the fridge, tequila in the freezer, and if you showed up at any time, we were ready to party.
My housemates and I decided to use my misery as an excuse to throw a party, like we needed an excuse. This adorable couple that worked with us stopped by, she had to leave early but he decided to say. I should note I couldn’t remember his name if you put a gun to my head, but I will forever remember her name is Brittany. There was beer. A lot of beer. And tequila. Even more tequila. I remember coming out of my black out sitting on the couch in my room, my roommate saying “I can’t believe you fucked him!”. After noting my look of utter confusion she had to explain to me that I had screwed my friend Brittany's boyfriend with the door open for the whole party to see. I was hysterical. I didn’t remember a thing. How do you have sex! with someone and not remember. I later found the underpants I was wearing stuck between the wall and my bed and burned them like destroying the evidence would somehow make the ordeal less real.
Sadly that was not the first time I wouldn’t remember a sexual encounter. I once came out of a black out mid sex with a bouncer from the club I frequented. I was so disoriented that I just laid there crying until it was over. This was not an individual I would have soberly pursued let alone jumped in the sack with. I have woken up in strangers beds (guys and girls) with not a shred of an idea of what took place the night before. Sometimes fully dressed, more times not.
This all transpired before I was 21. Before I was even legally allowed to consume alcohol.
Binge drinking and blacking out is not part of the college experience. Waking up next to a stranger without your panties and having to go to planned parenthood for a std test and the morning after pill is not part of the college experience. Looking back at sexual encounters and wondering if that might have been date rape is not part of the college experience.
You will never get those memories back. You will never figure out what happened unless the other parties involved give you a play by play. When you are blackout drunk your brain straight up loses the ability to turn short term memories into long term memories.
My story is not unique by any means. 1 in 6 women have been a victim of sexual assault and every 98 SECONDS someone in America will be raped. Half of sexual assaults occur after consumption of alcohol, either by the victim or the perpetrator. Being intoxicated lowers your inhibitions we all know that, but do you realize just how many unsafe situations you put yourself in? You don't think twice about following that strange man and his friends out to the parking lot for a cigarette, joint, or fix. Or letting a stranger help you home becasue you are too intoxicated to get there by yourself.
Events like these didn't end after college for me. They would continue right into my early 30s until I eventually got sober. Ruining relationships and friendships regularly becasue I had no boundaries. I had so much self loathing that if anyone showed me the slightest attention I would throw myself at them. Coming to terms with these events was a huge part of my recovery journey. I cried, got mad, and eventually found peace. They shaped who I was to become after recovery.
If you or someone you know has experienced a sexual assault and need help please call 800-656-HOPE(4673) or visit RAINN for a live online chat.
I have been dreaming big lately about what I want the future of BCR to be. My big, huge, scary dream is to open a small recovery center. Pairing with other groups in the recovery community to create a safe haven for those in recovery and their families. We would feature classes in yoga, art, and writing for adults and kids. If you are in recovery and have a skill you would like to share you would be welcome to hold a class. A place for people to bring their kids and families to hang out and be in a substance free environment.
Keep dreaming those big dreams!