You’ve Got To Be Kidding Right???


Random (and sometimes not so random) musings from a life that sometimes is but often times is NOT amusing….

The 80’s??

I admit it – I am a child of the 80’s – meaning, I was not BORN in the 80’s but I was a TEENAGER in the 80’s.  

This fact frightens me and amazes me.


In a time when everyone around me was oohing and ahhing over President Reagan and seeding their conservative right wing views I was off on a different path – arguing with my homeroom teacher about the fact that she couldn’t MAKE me say the pledge of allegiance, rocking out to Madonna (note:  not the Madonna of today who is into Kabala but the real Madonna, the one that wore 50,000 bracelets and lots of black lace) arguing about whether or not her “Like A Virgin” song was inappropriate, and of course, loving Michael J Fox on Family Ties but hating his political views. 


Nancy Reagan though held a special place in my heart for distain.  I thought her “Just Say No” crusade was ridiculous despite the fact that I personally had never done drugs.  I thought she was nuts for letting out that she used a psychic for assistance in making decisions while she was First Lady.  I could go on and on – you get the point. 


Like everything else has aged, my views have aged as well.


Over the years though my views on Nancy Reagan have softened.  I’ve seen her shield and seclude her husband during his final days so that his legacy was remembered the way he would have wanted it.  I admired that she went against political lines to support Stem Cell research knowing that she would face ridicule because she knew that the advances and findings would help millions and millions even if it would no longer help her husband.  Finally, I grew to respect her tremendously when I watched her during her president’s funeral – it was heartbreakingly obvious that she loved her “Ronnie” dearly and was shocked and devastated by his death – even if she knew it was coming.


I’ve found too that my views on life have changed.  I’ve softened around the edges of my idealistic soul.  I’ve learned that I’m not always right all the time – that sometimes things happen for no reason, that I can’t change the world.  I’ve learned that I have to like myself and think before I put myself out there – that, believe it or not, not everyone wants or needs to know my opinion.  I’ve learned that coming home to a family that loves me and watching TV on a Sunday afternoon with my husband *might* just be a ‘good time’.  I’ve learned grown to accept that I’m never going to be a size 2,4,6, or maybe even an 8 again.  (I have *not* however accepted that my ass is as large as it has gotten – WHEN DID THAT HAPPEN?)   


Don’t misunderstand.  I still think that it would be great if everyone had health insurance, that all children had access to the same level of education, that everyone had enough food and water. 


I’m still just as idealistic even if I’ve learned that I can’t change the world.


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Every once in a while I sit down and take stock of where I am, where I’ve been, where I am going and yes, if I am being truly honest, where I am going to have my pity party next.  The pity parties are becoming farther and farther apart as are the thoughts of having one but recently…. let’s just say I’ve been contemplating one that, honestly, I would think that by now I would have the knowledge of how to avoid. 


But that’s the point isn’t it?


If it were easy to be in recovery then everyone who decided one day that they were finished with drinking or using would just ‘poof’ stop.  That however, is usually not the case.  Some of us decide and succeed in walking away and well some of us, we go kicking and screaming and have to have absolutely ridiculous things happen to us before the light bulb turns on and we say to ourselves:  “Okay, THAT was enough – it’s time.” 


Might I add that, from experience, once the light bulb happens the process becomes infinitely simpler. 


In recovery you learn things like:

  • Keep It Simple
  • First Things First
  • Change Your Playgrounds & Playmates


In the past two years I’ve been pretty successful (not all the time but a substantial portion of the time) at keeping those three simple rules activated and not thinking that I was above them.  I’m afraid to say that over the past few weeks I’ve let a few of them slide – okay, all of them.  As in:  off the charts, down the abyss, in the hole take your analogy.    This morning was a wake up call that I need to talk about.  This morning I, inadvertently, went against the number 1 rule – the one to keep it simple. 



Simple:  I tried too hard.  I forgot myself and who I am, what is important to me, and that just by being me I’m probably likeable enough by at least someone.    


Right now those feelings of ‘someone isn’t going to like me if I’m not just like them’ are flooding back to the surface and I don’t like them.  I’m questioning myself AND ANSWERING which is a dangerous thing.  The questioning is okay, it’s the answering that always gets me into trouble.   So I’m back to the same day I started this journey (for reals this time – unlike all the other times it was just BS to get my husband to shut up) – I’m using my tools – I’m not rationalizing but I am taking a serious inventory and working through the what’s of my thoughts, whether or not it’s a rational thought, and who or how can I get some help with it.   


God, I wish that this was easier.  I wish that it was just a simple decision and didn’t have any long term impact and most of all – I wish that my brain would just CHANGE.

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Unintended Collateral Damage

Over the past weekend I had difficult reality come up and bite me in the ass. 

Almost literally. 


It happened when my husband and I took the ‘big girls’ out to eat and my husband ordered a beer.  There was a subtle shift in mood but none that was extremely obvious.  What happened next though there was no mistaking.  My husband, the love of my life, the one that has stood behind me through hell and back, well he had the gall to order another beer.  This time the shift in mood was not so subtle.  Both girls stopped eating and looked at me.


I was ashamed of what I saw.


I saw fear – fear that he was going to drink too much, fear that I was going to join in. 


Life shouldn’t be that difficult for a 13 and 10 year old – they shouldn’t fear someone having a beer with dinner – in fact they shouldn’t even THINK about it.  I have caused this fear – I – ALONE.  It wasn’t anyone else’s fault, it wasn’t anything in one else had a hand in.  My drinking became out of control after my divorce, when I was not with my husband I have now.  I can’t blame anyone but myself and maybe my f’ed up genes which certainly didn’t help matters. 


I have to admit that my husband handled it perfectly.  He realized the issue and called the waitress over and calmly, without any comments handed her the beer back.  No discussion, no making it a big deal, no nothing – just the impression that said that he cared more about them than he did that beer.


I wish so much that I had given that gift to my girls.


Last night I was watching TV and the words:  Unintentional Collateral Damage came up.  I honestly don’t remember what it was about – all I remember was that I sat and immediately thought that I had done the same thing I had ranted and raved about in the past that I had inadvertently, without consideration, and without much thought to the end result created:


Unintentional Collateral Damage


So what the hell do I do now?

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One Month

One Month – thirty (or thirty one, or even 28) days.  Doesn’t seem like long does it?  I mean think of it, do you remember what you were doing thirty days ago?  Unless there was a significant life event then most likely you remember the general ebb and flow of life but the specifics, not so much.  

In sobriety, success is counted in months.  To begin with it’s counted in days.  At the very beginning it’s counted in hours.  But let there be no mistake that first month (and for several after that as well) takes FOREVER.  As in:  


Fly around the world twice and land in Paris.


Plan how you would build the Eiffel Tower.


Obtain all the materials needed for said building to commence.


Build the thing, with all associated delays.  

Finally though, you will finish, time moving at a snails pace for sure, but you will finish.  

 It’s painful to lose a part of your life suddenly.  It’s scary not knowing how to live life in a new reality – even if it’s one that you lived before.  It’s hard to hear things like: ” Aren’t you over this yet?” or my all time favorite: ” Let’s all go out and party.”  (Party?  You’ve Got To Be Kidding Right?  ((shameless working in of blog name!)) Are you serious?  How am I supposed to do THAT?)  But you must go on, you must do the thing you thought that you could not do, you must take the hours and make days, which finally string together a month.  Why?  Because there really is no other choice – you do not yet know for sure that in time the memories won’t be quite as vivid, not as fresh.  Don’t misunderstand, you will remember them some of them you will remember with laughter and clarity and yet others you’ll choose to forget and not wish to discuss.  All of those things will build who you are.  You will be a different person, yet in ways stronger.  You will be a different person, but yet in ways weaker – you will know that everything doesn’t happen for a reason and that sometimes the control that we ALL seek will elude you.  You will, in time, come to the realization that ridiculous comments are just that, ridiculous comments.  That they might make people feel better they do nothing for you and that you have to move on.  You will learn that you must learn let go.  You will choose to not let what happened define YOU – the you that is still there, even if it’s only a fragment of who you are right now.     

You learn at the beginning to keep it simple.  You’ll make mistakes, you’ll stumble, yet you will string together those hours, days, and months.  You will realize that you are still you.    

 Deep inside.

 Where it counts.

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Jobs R Us??

I admit it.

I hate my new job.

With every ounce and fiber of my being.

Old job:  Worked from home (that was a joke) two days a week – Thursday and Friday.  Job responsibilities:  mind numbing tasks.  Note however this was completely and totally overlooked for the work from home benefit.

New Job:  Up to now, hell on earth.  In work, downtown  Must be in by 8:30 cannot leave until 5:00.  Pros however:  more pay (which begs to ask:  who in the HELL cares how long you are there if you are getting the job done – but I digress), bonus opportunities, more visibility, blah ,blah, blah.

I miss my baby.  I miss my big kids.  I miss not having to decide if it’s more important to not cause shit level drama over taking what is perceived as another day off (note that I have 4 weeks of vacation – I guess I’m not suppose to take it) versus going to see my 9 year old be a female Abe Lincoln.  I miss being able to come and go when I wanted and have no one paying attention to me.

Yet again, I am reminded that I do not need to make decisions alone.

Yet again I am reminded that my will and my desires are not always right.

Oh don’t get me wrong.  I labored over this decision – I sought counsel and in the end, of course, I did what wanted.  Why?  Because we NEED more money.  Money to pay off the debt that I drove up while I was umm…otherwise occupied from my sanity.  I feel a sense of serious obligation to pay this debt off and this job will make it easier and quicker to do so (like maybe in 5-7 years versus the not a chance in hell I was previously looking at).

Yes.  It was that much.

And then, in the end I remember one of the main reasons why I took this position.  It’s scary for me to be at home alone all day…with my thoughts…with my superb personal decision making skills.

I know this.

I have yet however to accept it fully.

Doesn’t mean I have to like it.

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Humility? I Got Your Humility…

One of my first ‘lessons’ in recovery was the understanding of the word:


I was stumped.

In fact, I had to look it up because honestly, I didn’t know what it meant.

Further, to clarify how jacked up my perception of reality was at this point:  My first thought when I heard the word:  Humble?  Isn’t that something from that stupid Charlotte’s Web Book??   Why in the hell are we talking about humility?  I want to claw out the eyes of everyone here – WHY IN THE HELL did my husband leave me here – UGHGHGHGHGH.

Definition curtsey of wikipedia (because EVERYTHING on wikipedia is accurate & correct):

Humility, or being humble, is the defining characteristic of an unpretentious and modest person, someone who does not think that he or she is better or more important than others.

  1. Wasn’t part of being in recovery to tell the truth – all the time?   Why are you stupid people telling me one thing and telling me another?  WHY AM I HERE?  (Repeat nonsense such as this in your head for a couple of weeks until you acknowledge that you are ARE there and that you have no choice than to STAY so why not shut up and listen – it’s just easier that way.)

Here is the reality of Humility: If you have to look up the definition of the word in the dictionary then there is a pretty good probability that you aren’t smarter than anyone, let alone your boss.

As a wife and as a mother I will admit readily that I struggle with this every day.

Sometimes my husband and is passive aggressive to the point of making me want to rip my hair out.

Sometimes my employer just walks right over the line of insanity and I have to start to question my own.

But here’s the deal:  I’m not perfect.  I can’t claim to be and I never will be.

Maybe, just maybe, the sentence above is my start of my understanding of the definition of humble.

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Have I Done The Right Thing??

Over the past few days I’ve found myself wondering if I’ve done the right thing by taking my blog in a different direction and discussing my life from the perspective of a mother in recovery.  I’ve freaked out a few people.  I really didn’t anticipate freaking anyone out.  I think that, for me, it was pretty obvious that I had a problem with alcohol and I’ve been pretty approachable discussing the subject.

So, to those that still might be a slight freak out mode:

Yes, I am a recovering alcoholic.

Recovering as in greater than 3 years of sobriety.

I’ll carry on now.

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Wordless Wednesday???

Since I’ve got a blog like no other…

Wordless Wednesday will now be known as Family Fun Friday..

It may be the most family friendly post of the week.

Or Not.

Oh, and here’s a picture of  The Littlest One doing what she does best…

Being The Littlest One

I am The Littlest One

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Here We Go…

Although many people in recovery will tell you that it’s not a good sign not to able to discuss it freely I’ve found that for me, admitting or discussing that I am in recovery is very difficult.  In fact, it’s down right excruciating.  Think I’ve overreacting?  Try telling someone that you are/were an alcoholic and then look at their face.

This is especially true for women.  When I was first sober I looked around for blogs that discussed women and their sobriety yet dealt with it in a family centered fashion allowing me to see that it could be done, that it was being done, and gave me *something* to hold onto that eventually life would become ‘normal’ again (whatever that means).   I have yet to find it.

Thus, the purpose of this blog.

If there are specifics you wish to know go to the About page although be forewarned that my picture will not appear (mostly because right now I take horrible pictures but also for the sake of my children and my husband).  To get the cast of players I’ll outline them in the About section as well.

But to tell you ‘About Me’ in four easy sentences:

I am a wife.

I am a mom.

I am a professional working in a VERY conservative industry.

And…I am a very grateful recovering alcoholic.

If you think this is an isolated problem the think again.  Below are excerpts that show just how deep the problem permeates into society and how drinking changes due to age and time of life:

It is estimated that of the 15.1 million alcohol-abusing or alcohol-dependent individuals in the United States, approximately 4.6 million (nearly one-third) are women (1).

(1)    WILLIAMS, G.D.; Grant, B.F.; Harford, T.C.; and Noble, B.A. Population projections using DSM-III criteria: Alcohol abuse and dependence, 1990-2000. Alcohol Health & Research World 13(4):366-370, 1989.

Drinking behavior differs with the age, life role, and marital status of women. In general, a woman’s drinking resembles that of her husband, siblings, or close friends (3). Whereas younger women (aged 18-34) report higher rates of drinking-related problems than do older women (3,4), the incidence of alcohol dependence is greater among middle-aged women (aged 35-49) (5)

(2)    WILSNACK, R.W.; Wilsnack, S.C.; and Klassen, A.D., Jr. Women’s drinking and drinking problems: Patterns from a 1981 national survey. American Journal of Public Health 74(11):1231-1238, 1984. (4) HILTON, M.E. Drinking patterns and drinking problems in 1984: Results from a general population survey. Alcoholism: Clinical and Experimental Research 11(2):167-175, 1987. (5) WILLIAMS, G.D.; Stinson, F.S.; Parker, D.A.; Harford; T.C.; and Noble, J. Demographic trends, alcohol abuse and alcoholism, 1985-1995. Alcohol Health & Research World 11(3):80-83, 91, 1987.

So, as Oprah says:  “Here We Go”  (and note:  I will not refer to Oprah again…except perhaps in a tacky fashion).

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I Feel Like A New Person Again

Man, have I been a tad TOO overly opinionated lately.

I’ve also been in a place that I haven’t been in for a long time.

I’ve been a place that has had my recovery hanging on by a thread.

Barely and by my fingernails at times.

Me thinks that there is a correlation between that place and no meds.

Now that I’m back to being med’ed up I’m also back to being overly opinionated …just not as snarky.

One of things that was an outcome of said snarkyness and lack of appreciation of sobriety was a outing of my …ahem… problem.

On Twitter no less.

I had a major case of the ‘oh shits’ when I wrote the offending tweet but since I work at the Fort Knox of fire walled interwebs I was unable to “dump that tweet”  (thank you @f_i_d_g_e_t) as I was instructed to do.  Interestingly even though they have fire walled Twitter, you can get onto web based Twitter clients – go figure.

After my twitfauxpas I took a step back and thought:  “You know, there are a lot of mommy blogs out there but not so many mommy recovery blogs”.  Never wanting to be considered part of a pack I have been struggling with my blogging because honestly, I’m just not that interesting.  At least not since I’ve been sober.  Drunk, I’m a barrel of fun, at least for the first three drinks or so, after that, I’m just mean.

With that in mind I’ve decided to alter the focus of this blog.  I’m sure that I will receive a great deal of ridicule from the mainstream recovery people but honestly, some of my ventures into sobriety have been pretty freakin’ funny.  Some have been heartbreakingly sad – hopefully this blog will be a mixture of both with some ‘real life that isn’t boring’ thrown in.

Scared, yes, I am.

Scared of out my mind that I’m going to be judged and that not nice people are going to say not nice things.

But, here goes…

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