Hi, my name is Heather

January 21, 2010

from this one place I can’t see very far/in this one moment I’m square in the dark*

I don’t know how to do this.

Just quit.

I don’t know how and haven’t been able to.

I don’t even know how it happened. But it did. Even to me, the girl who is always fine because other people are not fine. It’s this disease that forgot to skip me. It laughed at my always trying to be good and please everyone self and kicked my stubborn pride in the guts.

It laughed.

And then it kicked harder and harder.

I’ve always tried to be a bit invisible. Felt a little invisible. Even while bouncing and laughing and showing off. Even then.

Keep it simple. Keep it small. No one has time for your always so overly sensitive self, always so affected, so full of emotion. Just stop. Go numb. You’ll be fine.

So the funny thing is, I didn’t even really do this up very big.

I didn’t drink all day, every day. I didn’t get even one DUI or get in any kind of major trouble at all. I bathed my kids and made them meals and built things out of Legos. But I did it all while wanting to drink and then 5pm! drinking while I did it. Sneaky stolen glasses while my loves weren’t looking, but they knew because they always know…she’s not really with us. I was drinking myself to sleep or stumble and then feeling off and anxious and heavy behind the eyes all day, every day.

I don’t like causing ripples, making a scene. I don’t want to be the one people are calling each other about with Big News, as they bob around in my waves, a bit shocked.

So no, I didn’t do this up big and yet it is still very very big. It drives me and drives me.

everything in me is tightening/I am fighting to stay open/stay open like a lake/I’ve no idea where to begin/to swallow up the way things are/everything in me is drawing in*

It progressed, from two a night to three a night and then more and more, taking on its big life, towering over me. That happened partly because I even stuffed it away, this addiction. So as not to bother anyone, even myself or God, I hid it away. I kept putting it away, glass by glass, somewhere inside me until I couldn’t breathe, couldn’t connect, couldn’t pray. I tried so hard not to think about it, and lost so much sleep trying not to think about it.

And now, I’m so tired of living for 5 o’clock so I can pour my first and never last glass of wine. That’s an empty thing to live for…

5 o’clock.

I don’t know what’s making me so afraid/tiny cloud over my head/heavy and grey with a hint of dread/I don’t like to feel this way*

self-medicate
first glass, brain wakes up
clear headed
more more more
less clear
more more more
less clear
numb
time flying and
finally
chemically dependent
just want those hours of feeling better
but feeling nothing is not better
and it never lasts

there’s no good way to hide*

I’m finally going to do something up big. I’m going to be a big quitter.

I’m terrified and totally humiliated and relieved all at once. And yet I have more peace than I’ve had in years. Even though I don’t want to stop.

I quit denial quite some time ago but couldn’t accept that I still needed to stop the beast I knew was in me. I spun my wheels, living just to fight the truth that walked around my heart and mind, begging gently to free me. Yes, I know I’m an alcoholic. But I’m fine. Because there is so much shame in this, so many finger waves and scowls at the corners of my memory, warnings of the bad bad bad choices. Don’t make them.

~~~~~~~

Not everyone wants more more more. They have one glass and want no more. Why can’t that be me, I’d ask. But that’s not me. For me it’s the sickness that it is, pulling me in with its false promises.

I used to think it was a choice. I used to think I was weak. And in some ways, I was. But there’s also this: If you have a propensity toward addiction, it will lie in wait and devour you with even the smallest dose of the chemical thing that is harmless to many but not to you.

Now I’m trying to push the guilty thoughts away because shame never has helped me. It has only kept me drinking. Love on the other hand, gently walking circles around my heart…well, that’s what is drawing me in and pulling me away from the need.

there’s redemption in confession/and freedom in the light*

If I say this here, in the very space that I’ve used to focus on the beauty of my life and to keep me afloat… If I say it here, well then, I’ve said it and I can’t turn back. This is not the kind of extraordinary I would like to keep in my ordinary life. So I said it here.

Like a promise.

And I say it here because I just want someone, you sitting there, my words resonating and seeming like yours, I want you to know you aren’t alone. We all have our thing or things that bind us up and turn us inside out and it hurts so much, but I really think we can quit. We can be free.

I am quitting. Or rather, I quit. Yesterday, January 20, 2010 was the first day of the rest of my doing it up big quitting life.

I will not have a drink again. I will not go light and fuzzy or wobble. I will deal. I will strip it away until I uncover all the layers of things, lies I’ve told myself, that brought me here. I will always know that this is part of me, a part I can’t come back to for just one drink, poking at the monster with a stick. No I can’t. Because the beast will wake up and hover over me again, keeping me square in the dark.

I am quitting.

I don’t have any idea how, but I’m about to find out…

a fire in my bones, fire in my bones/burnin in my bones/when the lights come up on this town/when the thing goes down/wanna be found when the lights come up on this/wanna be found tryin/when the lights come up/wanna be telling the truth*

I will do this for Ryan.
I will do this for Miles and Asher.
I will do this for me.
The me that’s always been there, but has been covered up by this thing.
The me who is living for the moments of being fully alive
instead of living quickly through those moments until it’s 5 o’clock.
I’m going to find her.

I’m not holding on to anything I’m not willing to let go of/to be free

I will lay my heart wide open/like the surface of a lake/bring the wind and bring the thunder/bring the rain till I am tried/when it’s over bring me stillness/let my face reflect the sky/and all the grace and all the wonder/of a peace that I can’t fake/wide open like a lake*

*all bold italics taken from songs by Sara Groves, on her album Fireflies and Songs (the album that helped me finally find myself trying.)

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{ 222 comments… read them below or add one }

Angie January 21, 2010 at 8:18 am

I wept through this today as you laid your heart wide open. I am amazed by your courage. I am blessed by your humility. I am praying fervently for you. Praying you will find the strength each day, each moment, each breath that you need. Praying you will feel that Love gently walking circles round your heart. I am far away in proximity, but with you in your battle.

Thank you for sharing… so real and so well.

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Adventures In Babywearing January 21, 2010 at 8:31 am

Heather, you continue to be an amazing inspiration to me. We are alike in so many ways and I just want to scoop you up, too, like we scoop up everyone else. You're already doing great- I can tell. Whatever I can do, to listen, support, you know where I am.

Amber was just emailing me about "stinking" and how – remind me to send you what she said. (Part of it went: My friend said that if you want to glorify God, you have to be willing to let others see how lousy you are. )

Heather, I don't think you are lousy. But there are a lot of lousy things we do as humans that we just try to hide hide hide and it's doing NO ONE any good. I don't know that I could be as brave as you and finally bring my hidden things out in the open, but you're taking me (and I imagine a slew of your friends and readers) that much closer to it.

This isn't about US learning something from you or taking more form you, this is about YOU and YOU being the best alive YOU.

So much we all CAN learn from this, but most of all, we want you to be the best quitter ever. We're rooting for you.

Steph

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Deb January 21, 2010 at 8:34 am

okay, this won't be my only comment. but i want to stop reading for a second to tell you that even though i am going to do the right thing and validate your feelings, i am going to implore you to shake off the humiliation. be proud, heather. we ALL have our ways of self-medicating, even if it isn't drinking, shopping, pills. escapism comes in MANY forms and none of it is healthy. so that is my point number one. so back to reading, and thank you for taking this huge step and letting us in for at least this part of the journey. please know you have support.

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Lindsey January 21, 2010 at 8:34 am

This is so beautiful and so brave – thank you for sharing it. I hope that the cloud lifts and that you find that beyond 5 o'clock there is much, much glory and grandeur to live for. And small lego moments too.

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Chele January 21, 2010 at 8:37 am

Heather… you have no idea how many people this will help feel normal. I am one of them. Been there… sometimes I feel like going back, sometimes I do go back and then it hits me like a ton of bricks. This week is one of those weeks for me. It doesn't change the way I think about you, it just shows me that I'm normal and you are normal! Love ya and big hugs. BTW, I'm struggling with a lot of those feelings right now. Not just the drinks but the things that drive you to that. Thanks so much for sharing!

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Maggie, dammit January 21, 2010 at 8:41 am

DUDE.

Call me. I have way too much to say. Call me today, around lunch time?

I love you.

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Corinne January 21, 2010 at 8:42 am

I hope you feel His love for you this morning. I hope you feel mine for you, and everyone else's. Feel wrapped around by it, and a little safer with it.
You are amazing. And this… oh this. You know.
Tears. And love for you Heather. Always!

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emily January 21, 2010 at 8:44 am

Wow. I'm going to read this again and again. And again. And then I'm going to come back and read it again. You have put words and thoughts and skin on the skeleton of addiction. So many can relate. So many wish they couldn't.

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Mandi @ Organizing Your Way January 21, 2010 at 8:45 am

Reposting to fix a typo:

Wow, I can't even imagine how much courage it took to write that post. I would encourage you to find someone who's been there and is willing to walk this road with you — daily for as long as you need it. It's going to get harder before it gets easier, and having someone who's ahead of you on the journey will help!

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lovenursing January 21, 2010 at 8:47 am

I'm a lurker but I'm completely rooting for you. My parents are recovering addicts and it is such a fulfilling thing to work through it with them. I know your kids are small but maybe they'll read this post someday and I'm sure they'll be very proud of their mom.
Best wishes and I'll be looking forward to hearing about the journey and how you feel in your new, clarified and unaltered lifestyle. Best wishes!

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katdish January 21, 2010 at 8:48 am

That took some major courage, Heather. So proud of you. Keep beating back the darkness and know that you are not alone in this struggle.

This thing, this monster – it's hold is weaker in the light.

You've been a light for so many today.

Thank you.

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Sidnie January 21, 2010 at 8:50 am

An honest, wide open heart is always a beautiful risk. My prayers are with you as you begin this "new life", this new journey to healing and truly living.
Alcoholism hits too close to home in many ways. It's a hard battle, but its a battle worth fighting, a battle worth winning.
My prayers are with you and your family. The road ahead will not be easy. Hold on to the support, seek help… and never forget that you are capable.

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Beth at I Should Be Folding Laundry January 21, 2010 at 8:51 am

You are brave and strong, although you may feel weak, you are not.

YOU ARE NOT.

And you are not alone.

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warmchocmilk January 21, 2010 at 8:51 am

I had no idea. But I can understand. Really it's part of the reason I don't often drink. I feel the propensity to addiction in me from generations of my family of addicts in many forms.

Good for you!

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HisFireFly January 21, 2010 at 8:55 am

Heather,

I have a sense that as God is wrapping His arms of love around you, He is also saying "Well done. Well done, little one."

He has been waiting for this very moment, preparing to meet you in a very BIG way, as you take the first step He will give you wings to fly!

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Mama B January 21, 2010 at 8:59 am

Thank you for sharing heather, you are so brave I know how hard that is. I have been on the brink, on the edge, hovering over the ledge and being saved.

We all have struggles and fight things that aren't pretty under our masks, behind our closed doors. Everyone is hiding something and you are so brave for showing it to the world.

Big hugs, I will be praying for you!

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happygeek January 21, 2010 at 8:59 am

Praying for you today sweet internet friend.

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Heather January 21, 2010 at 9:02 am

Praying for you. You can over come this. So very proud as it took real courage to post this here. You are not weak and when you feel like things are slipping you can come back here and see how strong you are. Also you can call or text me anytime. I am going to message you my number.

xo

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*Lissa* January 21, 2010 at 9:04 am

Wow. So very powerful.

I think you are so brave and amazing for realizing the changes you need to make.

I have battled my own addictions throughout my life, and luckily, came to the same conclusions as you. I would say I overcame them, but addictions are always there, waiting to prey on moments of weakness. I just learned how to quiet them.

Much love to you. You can do this.

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Deb January 21, 2010 at 9:06 am

so. be gentle with yourself. you are strong, but you are human and you need to treat yourself with TLC. okay? that's an order.

i am here if there is anything i can do to help you. and even if there's not.

and to reference the whole attention thing… don't worry, we can still talk about silly things and laugh and put it aside and just be.

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Sarah@Life in the Parsonage January 21, 2010 at 9:08 am

You, my friend, are totally gonna make it through this.

I admire you beyond words.

And what you said, "We all have our thing or things that bind us up and turn us inside out and it hurts so much, but I really think we can quit. We can be free." is dead on.

We all have our things. Thank you for being honest enough to share yours.

Freedom has come.

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Mommy Mo January 21, 2010 at 9:11 am

Sitting here in tears, wanting to wrap you in a big hug.

As I think I have mentioned before to you, my sister (and my dad, if I am being honest, but he won't own up to it) have battled addiction. I know I have the makings for it and every once in a while, feel those inclinations to go down that path. That is why I have never let myself even take one step down that path, because I am so afraid that I won't be able to stop. I have seen the damage it has caused, from a very young age……

You are a brave woman, one that has so much to LIVE for, most importantly, yourself.

I love you Heather.

And now I can't stop crying Heather, because I keep thinking about my sister and how hard it was for a while, for all of us. So many people love you, just remember that. THERE IS NO SHAME.

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Abaloo January 21, 2010 at 9:13 am

God bless you.

I am going to retweet this, because this is something so many people will feel and ache over. Perhaps not all the same beast, but a beast all the same.

Lord, I pray thanks for Heather. Lord, I don't know her, but I know that in You she is blessed, and that You will keep her. Lord pour our Your grace on Heather. Her slate is clean, she doesn't have to do anything for You Lord. You are running to her, arms wide open, so eager to scoop her up. Lord let Your love flow into Heather's life so abundantly. In Jesus' name. Amen"

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Laanykidsmom January 21, 2010 at 9:13 am

Bless you. For sharing, for facing your demons, for admitting weakness. This is all of us, in one way or another. Like Deb said in a previous comment, we all self-medicate in some form. You are not alone. And you will rise above.

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H-Mama January 21, 2010 at 9:20 am

You are not alone.
(((((((Heather)))))))

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Boy Crazy January 21, 2010 at 9:21 am

Proud of you. (We'll talk soon.)Love love love you, friend.

-elizabeth

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Kristen @ Motherese January 21, 2010 at 9:22 am

Heather, I am moved and inspired by your bravery. It is an act of courage to choose to become the best version of yourself. I send you love, strength, and cupcakes – and every molecule of support I can fit through these wires. xoxo

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Robin Arnold January 21, 2010 at 9:27 am

Big rocking hug. I'm praying for you. Don't forget to go get help if it' harder than you thought. There are perfectly extraordinary ordinary people in AA meetings, they will bless you and you will bless them.

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love January 21, 2010 at 9:34 am

i hope you feel His love, our love, dancing those tiny little circles all over your BEAUTIFUL heart right now. you can do this. we ALL have a beast and i'm so proud of you for fighting yours. quitting yours. so much love, heather.

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~Mendie~ January 21, 2010 at 9:38 am

I am so proud of you Heather, this is a huge step, especially since you know how important it is to take control of it before it takes more control of you and you end up not being able to take something back.

A perfect example of not judging a book by its cover, because there are so many things about you that people wish they mimic:your way with words, your passion and wit, but this is something that was hiding underneath all of that. I'm sorry you have to struggle with it, but am proud you are standing up to it! Hugs!

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Lindsay @ Not2Us January 21, 2010 at 9:38 am

I know you are not alone. Thank you so much for your raw honesty and your determination. I'll be praying for you. ((hugs)) You can do this!

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Megan@SortaCrunchy January 21, 2010 at 9:39 am

How can I find words to put to this? It's so powerful. Everything I could say feels so small.

This: "We all have our thing or things that bind us up and turn us inside out and it hurts so much, but I really think we can quit," rings so true to me. We DO all have our things that bind. Know that, sister. Know that.

You WILL be the best quitter ever. In your weakness, you will find Him outrageously strong.

Praying, loving, holding . . .

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amanda January 21, 2010 at 9:40 am

i don't even have the words friend.

you are amazing. and brave. and beautiful. and you will do this.

i love you.

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Jen January 21, 2010 at 9:43 am

Your honesty is humbling. I really have no words. I will pray for you. I hope you are not doing this alone. I hope that you are seeking medical and psychological treatment. This is an illness you are fighting. I know you will win. You are a lot stronger than you give yourself credit for.

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Christy January 21, 2010 at 9:44 am

Oh, my friend. You are so brave, and so determined. I know you can do this! You WILL succeed! I'm sending you positive thoughts and prayers and hugs!!!

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gretchen from lifenut January 21, 2010 at 9:45 am

As the child of an alcoholic, I thank you with everything in me. I send hugs, support, prayers. You aren't alone.

My alcoholic parent was fully functional until, well, 5pm. Then?

Swerving, slurring, checked-out mentally, embarrassing, stupid, selfish, weak—all things I perceived my parent to be. I didn't see the humanity and the pain behind my parent's actions because I was a child and wanted my parent to be there 100% for me.

What is with calling my parent "parent" and not "mom" or "dad"…? I STILL can't fully talk about those years. I still feel shame over it, even though it had nothing to do with ME. Also, I feel very protective of my parent, feeling like I need to shield them from scrutiny. I felt the same as a child. It was an enormously heavy secret to bear for a kid. That life raged on until I was a young adult.

So that is why I thank you with everything in me. Your children are still young and you have given them a tremendous gift with your decision. By being a quitter, you have spared them a unique hurt. Your husband, too. I saw my non-alcoholic parent's heart break over and over and over.

So much pain caused by fermentation.

The wonderful news (even though I still struggle with pain regarding my childhood): My alcoholic parent has been sober since December 26, 1994. He/she almost DIED to get it to happen, but it did. I got my parent back.

(I have never written about this, but I will someday.)

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LutherLiz January 21, 2010 at 9:46 am

I am proud of you, your courage, and your willingness to love yourself!

God bless you on your quitting and your healing.

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Jillene January 21, 2010 at 9:48 am

You never cease to amaze me Heather. You are so brave and I know that you can to this!! I will be praying for you!!

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MommyJ January 21, 2010 at 9:55 am

Heather, you are so brave. You can do this, and have so many people that are here rooting for you. Don't give up! You're added to my prayer list as well.

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Jennifer @ Getting Down With Jesus January 21, 2010 at 9:59 am

I've been sitting here,
sitting here,
wondering what to say to adequately express how I feel about what you've written. To write words that mean something in this space.

All I can say is this: You make me want to be brave as I face my own monsters in life. Your courage here … Yeah.

I don't know what to say, really. I'm truly in awe of your bravery, your willingness to break loose from the chain of the monster, and of course your honesty in such a public place.

I want to be like you when I grow up.

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Sabrina January 21, 2010 at 10:00 am

Thanks for your honesty Heather. i love you so much! and i support you 100%! :)

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deb January 21, 2010 at 10:02 am

First.
I love you.
You are loved. Don't think you can be motivated by shame. Be motivated by love. There is no need for shame. We all have our brokenness.
You are courageous by sharing. You are more courageous by waking up and dealing every day.You can deal all day. You will. You can.

My last post referred to my father's suicide.
He was an alcoholic.
So were many back in the day. So are many now.

Please know that your children need you more than you can ever imagine.

You are beautiful and loved and you can do this.
If not perfectly , then you'll try again.
We are here.

I am here .
He is here and in you….

love,
deb

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blueviolet January 21, 2010 at 10:06 am

You admitted it. Heather, you admitted it!!! That means you are standing at the threshold of your new beginning.

You can do this and we love you and support you.

Forever hugs, love, and prayers.

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Becky January 21, 2010 at 10:07 am

Sweet Heather, as a child of an alcoholic (who then became a Drug and Alcohol therapist), I am SOOO proud of you. And if you ever need to talk, I'm here. Always.

So proud. You are amazing.

Love love love
Me

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Christy M. January 21, 2010 at 10:07 am

Heather,
My brave, beautiful, amazing friend. I stand up and applaud you with tears in my eyes. I know how hard it is to admit you are not perfect. I know.

My mom is a half-ass recovering alcoholic. My dad is just an alcoholic. I've watched her journey since the tender age of 7 when I was the keg girl at one of her many parties. I've been to meetings with her, I've been to meetings by myself, all trying to understand and avoid this addiction that runs so deep within my family. Of course, I have avoided becoming addicted to the drink, but the addiction has reared it's ugly head in other aspects of my life. I truly believe if it's in you, it's in you. BUT, you can learn to control it, to own it, to beat it down. You can. You will need lots of support, people who have been there, people who know what you are going through. I highly recommend you check out an AA meeting. I've been attending them off and on for the past 20 year with my mom, and I also go to Al-Anon any time I get a chance. Support. Understanding. Love. Bad Coffee. The Spirit. They are all there waiting for you.

People who haven't experience addiction will never understand. They may try to, and they will try to help, but they just won't get it.

I love you, girl. Please let me know if you need anything. Anything at all. I'm here for you, and I'm praying for you.

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Peanut January 21, 2010 at 10:09 am

Heather, your bravery and honesty astound and inspire me. I'm proud of you for making this decision. I must let the nurse in me speak: I hope you are getting support from your doctor because alcohol withdrawal is very serious. At the hospital, we watch for symptoms in anyone that has more than two drinks/day. Don't do it alone, okay?
I'll be praying for you.

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Kazzy January 21, 2010 at 10:10 am

I am rooting for you. Find a replacement and give it all you've got. hugs

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Kathleen January 21, 2010 at 10:14 am

Welcome Heather, so glad you are here with all the rest of us.

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togetherforgood January 21, 2010 at 10:16 am

Oh Heather, I am so proud of you. There is something so cleansing about laying your soul open. Praying– and rooting for Team Heather. You can do this thing. HE can do this thing in you.

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Manic Mother January 21, 2010 at 10:17 am

Oh hun, I struggled a lot with addiction in my teens and 20's. I think it almost goes hand and hand with mental illness. Keeping the beast at bay. Are you seeing anyone? I sure hope so, because maybe even if you know why you are drinking, it still helps immensely to talk to someone about it.

I am here if you ever want to call or chat, I have been through treatment twice. You are not alone mama, not at all. So brave of you!

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Kelly (conversemomma) January 21, 2010 at 10:25 am

Found you when Maggie Girl tweeted this. Just wanted you to know I was moved by the piece, by you. Good Luck!

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Tessa January 21, 2010 at 10:27 am

What an amazing first step, to make yourself so vulnerable. Amazing. You'll do it. I'm not sure how you feel about AA, but I have a few recovered alcoholic friends who only got through with AA. The program seems amazing and spiritual. May you find strength in God and know that you are bigger than this disease.
Sending love and prayers your way.

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Crooked Eyebrow January 21, 2010 at 10:28 am

Beautiful Heather-
Are you feeling the love? Because it is there. I am so, SO proud of you. You are in my thoughts and I think you are surrounded by so many and we are all in your corner.

Hugs,love and lots of good thoughts are being sent your way.

xoxo

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Sheryl January 21, 2010 at 10:39 am

well, what do ya know? another way we were twins separated at birth. my time was 8pm however. my days revolved around 8pm, it couldn't get there fast enough.

i am not going to write much here, but i want you to know that i have walked this path before you. it would be my privilege and honor to walk this out WITH you. call, email, message me…whatever and whenever!

you are brave. God is bigger. it is worth it. YOU are worth it.

I LOVE YOU!

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MommaKiss January 21, 2010 at 10:40 am

Well, you go big or go home, right? This is something I've thought of often. I'm the child of not 1 but 2 alcoholics. 3 siblings deal with alcoholism. It's in my genes, and it scares me. So I'm hyper aware.

Good Luck with your big quit! You can do it.

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Kelly January 21, 2010 at 10:42 am

As yet another child of addict parents, I feel so much love and admiration for you for both admitting you are powerless to this addiction and doing what you must to fight it.

My father is "recovering" crack addict (who now is a pill popper and drinker) and my mother is a recovering alcoholic. Their addictions shaped my life in heartbreaking and lasting ways. But so did their recoveries.

I encourage you to think about meetings because there's nothing more powerful than connecting with others who've been where you are and can help you leave it behind.

My heart is with you every step of the way. Please remember that you aren't alone.

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zeghsy January 21, 2010 at 10:42 am

loving yourself is one of the hardest things to do. this is one of your first steps. congratulations. as you can see, everyone (even strangers, like me!) is so proud of you. we're all happy to give you more love to help you love yourself. prayers and hugs and LOVE to you.

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maggie January 21, 2010 at 10:44 am

TOTALLY rooting for you.

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Carrie January 21, 2010 at 10:45 am

Heather, you are SO brave- thank you for being honest- I will be praying for you & walking this road with you through your blog.

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MamaBear January 21, 2010 at 10:55 am

(blink-blink-blink…) That's the cursor blinking at me in this little comment box, waiting for me to type …I don't know what I can say that hasn't been said before me – WOW do you have some brave, inspiring, real, beautiful, raw, supportive people in your life! Draw on them, lean on Him, and know that we love you.

(((Hugs)))

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Kristina P. January 21, 2010 at 11:11 am

Heather, you are probably one of the most honest bloggers I "know."

I think a lot of people, and especially mothers, can relate to this. Thank you for blowing the lid right off.

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lareinaelena January 21, 2010 at 11:16 am

First, you are an inspiration. You are brave. You are strong. Good for you.

Second, I don't know how you just managed to put addiction into words. Amazing!

Wishing you love. Trust Him. He's in control.

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Steph @ Diapers and Divinity January 21, 2010 at 11:27 am

Heather, there is obviously a huge team here of people who love you and want to hold you up with their hands and hearts through this struggle. Lean on them (us) and their prayers when you need to. And like Robin said, please get help, too. Because we all have love and encouragement, but there are professionals who have tools. Us + them + God + the goodness of you = a bright, bright future. I can feel it. You can do this Heather! (Joshua 1:9)

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Kerri January 21, 2010 at 11:40 am

Heather, I am so moved and so inspired. Thank you for sharing your battle. I really really really needed to read this today. So many of us have our own secret struggles, and they tear us down when God wants us to be lifted up. I need to be ready to give my weaknesses away, too.

You are brave and strong and good and God will help you to succeed. My prayers are with you, and they will be especially at 5:00.

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Eowyn January 21, 2010 at 11:43 am

Just consider this comment another circle of love around you.

I'll pray for you. I will do anything I can to help.

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The Clines January 21, 2010 at 11:53 am

I don't think I've ever written to you before, but I want to encourage you and tell you that your writing is beautiful. You can quit and beat the addiction. Be strong.

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TheOneTrueSue January 21, 2010 at 12:01 pm

"Not everyone wants more more more. They have one glass and want no more. Why can't that be me, I'd ask…"

This is how I feel about twinkies.

Seriously.

I'm a food addict – have been ever since I was a little kid, went through years of bulimia, years of a really twisted relationship with food. It was an addiction. It IS an addicition.

Yours – alcohol
Mine – food

We all have issues and addictions. You are Heather, and you are an alcoholic, but you are also SO MUCH MORE. And we all love you for ALL of the things you are, even this – even the brave way you're sharing this part of yourself with everyone.

Smooches.

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Sarah@EmergingMummy January 21, 2010 at 12:07 pm

Is it okay that I just want to sit down and give you a giant hug? Even though I don't know you, I want to hold your hand and have a good cry. I come from a family crippled by alcohol addiction and this, this tendency to addiction, i completely understand and watch in my self as well. You are so very brave, friend-that-i-haven't-met-yet. I hope you know that I have your back, praying for you, here in Canada. This took more guts than I think I have.

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Kim January 21, 2010 at 12:09 pm

I know this was hard to write and even harder to publish. I love you so much Heather. I am proud of you for taking this step and realizing that you have to stop. That really is the first step.
I know you might be thinking, "what does she know? she doesn't drink!" but, my brother and sister-in-law are both recovering addicts — 20 years sober for both of them.
You can do this. You are an amazing woman, so strong. Don't try to do it alone though.
I love you love you love you. Wish I lived there so I could give you a big fat squeeze. I'll just have to wait until May when i can do it properly.

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jolibe January 21, 2010 at 12:11 pm

I've been thinking about this post ever since I read it early this morning. It's haunting me, but in a good way. You are strong. You are brave. You are awesome. You will overcome this.
I, like so many others, can relate to you on so many levels. And I just wish I could give you a great big strong hug in person.
Motherhood is the most wickedly fearsome and wickedly wonderful experience – and we're expected to nurture these new little lives while most of the time we're still figuring things out for ourselves…finding our own missing pieces and throwing out the broken pieces that are still dangling about, getting in our way.
I have complete faith that you will pull this "broken piece" away – and while it might sting like fire at first, you will heal and grow stronger than ever.

Thank you so much for sharing your truth with us.

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Debbie January 21, 2010 at 12:16 pm

Oh honey. I had no idea.
First, don't be ashamed. You are so strong to admit you want to quit and to do it so publicly. And you are one of the strongest women I know. I have NO doubt you will do this!

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Bina January 21, 2010 at 12:19 pm

Hello Sweet Love…

You don't know me…but gosh my heart knows yours. I have been there ~ at the bottle of a bottle, needing just one more, desiring a little bit but taking a lot.

I have been there ~ and have come out the rabbit hole on the other end. I know you can do it…just know I will be praying for you as you find the other side of the hole you must escape.

If you need an ear…I am here. Anytime. Email addy is on my profile page.
Bina

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Keyona January 21, 2010 at 12:22 pm

My sweet friend. You are loved. So so much. :)

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Lisa Page Rosenberg January 21, 2010 at 12:27 pm

This is a very good day.

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TKW January 21, 2010 at 12:28 pm

My jaw is on the floor and tears are in my eyes. You are so brave. So very, very brave.

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Heidi January 21, 2010 at 12:29 pm

I am new to your blog, came here through a link on Twitter.

This is simply one of the most beautiful things I have ever read on the web. The beauty, the bravery, the humanity…I am in awe. And I am praying for you, my blog-friend I have just met.

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Michelle Vandepol January 21, 2010 at 12:34 pm

praying for you :)your honesty will help, reach out, and strengthen many with drinking problems.
if you want a read for the journey
"Drinking: A love Affair" by Caroline Knapp is super duper honest.

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Tara January 21, 2010 at 12:35 pm

Heather, your honesty and courage are a true inspiration. You can do this, I know you can. Lean on others, let them lift you up. You are so caring and giving to others but it's your turn now, there is absolutely no shame in accepting help. This is it, right here..that moment that starts the rest of your life, to be lived fully alive. ((hugs))

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Lisa @ Crazy Adventures in Parenting January 21, 2010 at 12:38 pm

I am so beyond proud of you right now, do you know that? You admitted it. That is the hugest first step! You ADMITTED IT! FANFREAKINTASTIC, lady!

You can do this. You can do this because you can move mountains if you want to, and for Ryan, Miles and Asher you can and will do anything.

I love you.

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Erin January 21, 2010 at 12:44 pm

There's nothing I can say that hasn't already been said, but my God. You sweet, brave, beautiful girl. I already thought you were so strong and admirable after our recent email, but now? You embody strength in ways I can only dream. I know you think you're weak, but this post took SO MUCH COURAGE.

I love you.

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Kristen@nosmallthing January 21, 2010 at 12:51 pm

Wow.

I'm in awe.

I just don't even know what to say, really. I'm so happy for you…that you've made a new beginning. You have so many of us out here, rooting for you, you will never be alone.

And do you know what? Those babies of yours will read this someday and they will weep over what you did, for them.

Good for you, girl! Good for you!

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Tina January 21, 2010 at 1:04 pm

Sending you a hug from here.

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Candace Jean July 16 January 21, 2010 at 1:07 pm

For every wife & mother who lies awake at night, agonizing over the "propensity for addiction to lie in wait & devour you," I thank you for this most encouraging declaration. I love your heart. The love that surrounds you will give you far more strength than "liquid courage" ever could.

His power has indeed been made perfect in our weakness.what a testimony you are to His love for us. May you feel His embrace during your healing. I am so proud of your stealth, bravery, & humility. God be with you.

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Christy January 21, 2010 at 1:21 pm

Heather, I'm a long time lurker, first time commenter. I just wanted to say I've been praying for you since I read this post this morning! You are not lousy or worthless or any of those things I'm sure you are thinking! You are brave, courageous and wonderful!! I admire you so much for this post!!!

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deb January 21, 2010 at 1:29 pm

Heather sweets,
I'm back because I was crying and shaking on the last comment , but I wanted to clarify that my father was in his 30's when he took his life, started self medicated because of manic depression ( misdiagnosed, misunderstood) , and saw a slippery slope ahead , did what he figured was a favour.
I was 10. Long story, not yours.
But our stories should be there for the telling, sharing, and healing.

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BaronessBlack January 21, 2010 at 1:40 pm

Well done, Honey!
Such a lot of lovely comments on here! They should really buoy you up through these first few difficult days.
I believe your faith will really help you through this hard journey.
Don't give up giving up!
And know that you'll be in our thoughts and prayers!

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Jenn @ A Country Girl's Ramblings January 21, 2010 at 1:59 pm

Heather, I don't have any words of wisdom to help you.
I wish I could reach through this computer screen and wrap you in my arms. I would tell you that you ARE strong. You bared you heart and soul in this post, what awesome strength that took. I would tell you that with that very strength you will be able to do this one day, one moment at a time. I would tell you that I will pray for God's strength to be imparted on you as you begin this journey. I would tell you, I Love you, my friend and that I'll be rooting for you every step of the way.

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Jen S. January 21, 2010 at 2:01 pm

Heather, I just found your blog by way of prairiemama and wanted you to know that I'll be thinking of you and your brave soul. It's hard to admit that you've got a problem, but you've done it. You've got a lot of support. God bless.

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Jami January 21, 2010 at 2:06 pm

Addiction runs deep in me too. My father and step-father were both alcoholics, so I've taken great care to avoid drugs and alcohol. But sugar and caffeine, binge-eating I've allowed until it's affected my entire life.

Heather, I love you. You've taken such an amazing step. Made such a good choice. Your courage and humility strengthen and humble me.

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MidnightCafe January 21, 2010 at 2:17 pm

Heather, You beautiful lady with the beautiful words and such a beautiful heart…I miss you, and I wish I could DO something, make this easier, come over with Mexican beans and rice and give you a hug or something. I agree so much with one of the earlier comments who said that you need to stop feeling all guilty and humiliated. We all have traps we fall into, ALL of us. You are not alone. And you do not have to fight this alone. Thank you for giving so much of yourself to all of us through your words. Know that you are loved…

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L.T. Elliot January 21, 2010 at 2:22 pm

That grace you speak of? That grace you revel in and delight and offer up to so many people? I'm so proud of you for gifting yourself with it. I'm so proud of you for laying your heart wide open like the surface of lake. No murky waters–just clear blue down into the soul of you. This clawed, dredged truth you've shared? It only makes me love you more. I am so proud. How very beautiful is your reflection and I'm excited for your calm waters.
With love,
Me

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AmyLK January 21, 2010 at 2:25 pm

You are SO brave. And don't be afraid to ask for help on this journey. Stand up and be proud. Annouce to the world all the minutes, hours, days, and years that you continue in Recovery.

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Melissa, Multi-Tasking Mama January 21, 2010 at 2:38 pm

Bless you for your openness, may it encourage others to be transparent about their struggles as well! (((hugs)))

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Mainly a midwife January 21, 2010 at 2:52 pm

I don't know if I have ever commented on your blog before. I will be praying for you as you start your journey to recovery.
Does your church have a Celebrate Recovery group?

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AllisonO January 21, 2010 at 2:59 pm

Heather,

I have written and rewritten about a million comments to leave, but none of them seemed sufficient. I could not hit publish on a comment that did not do your post, you as a person – laid out open to the world, justice.

I cannot do it because all I really want to do is hug you. GOSH I WANT TO HUG YOU.

I will say: This? This is Christ at work.

To God be the glory.

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JustRandi January 21, 2010 at 3:01 pm

I don't know when I've ever been prouder to be your friend.
You. Are. Awesome.

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Life Is Beautiful January 21, 2010 at 3:02 pm

I admire your courage. I'll be praying for, especially around 5 o'clock every day.

If you're looking for a solid recovery program, I've heard wonderful things about "Celebrate Recovery." They have groups all over the country. It's for anyone who is dealing with hurts, habits, or hang ups.

Hang in there!

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The Murray Crew January 21, 2010 at 3:14 pm

Heather, thank you for boldly showing us your heart. Something so fragile, and making yourself so vulnerable. I'll certainly be praying for you as you fight this and turn over a healthy and better new you.

You will shine through this!

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happygeek January 21, 2010 at 3:27 pm

Praying for you as you face five o clock.

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Ann's Rants January 21, 2010 at 3:42 pm

Look at all of us holding you up–not because you're teetering but because

EVERYONE CAN RELATE.

To those who are surprised, I wonder how they picture "alcoholic."

It's just that some of us have that automatic shutoff valve (me) and others just don't. Throw in hours at home with endlessly loving needy powerful babies and WHAMMO.

This is normal. What your are going through is normal and common.

What is SPECIAL is that you are making a change.

We are all here. Nodding in understanding. Seeing ourselves or not–maybe not in this same way–but why oh why am I constantly sneaking off from my children to get an internet fix?

We have all come over to say we love you so much and are so proud of you–and honor your journey.

And on this treacherous part of your journey we are handing you yummy treats and fanning you and making you smile and giving you shade…

Because futher down this path we will need you to help one of us and remind us of exactly how it was that you got through.

LOVE you.

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Kimberly January 21, 2010 at 3:59 pm

I love seeing how loved you are. How this community of women you and I are both blessed to be part of doesn't love just part of you. Not just the easy, sweet, funny, and wise part. They, we, love the entirety of you. And how much more we can as you share more of who you are and who you are striving to be.

I have an addiction too – and have been too busy pretending it isn't one to even think about writing about it. I grew up in a church with a health code. No alcohol, no coffee, no tea, no tobacco, no drugs. But we aren't specifically warned off all addictive substances and I found one that wasn't on the list. It affects me mentally and physically and spiritually, and my heart aches reading this beautiful post of yours because I know, lack of social stigma aside, that we are so much the same.

Love you so much.

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Sara Joy January 21, 2010 at 4:38 pm

I hope that this flood of comments wash over you like a roar that dulls the voice who drives you where you have said you will go no more. Your bravery here is stunning, and I am honored to have met you, Heather. There is so much in saying it out loud that will carry you through the days to come when 5 o'clock looms large until hopefully the lovely days arrive when you fall into bed with hardly a thought of what you had to say no to today except an extra cupcake. God be with you my friend, he'll support you in ways that will astound you in this journey. So will we.

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Anonymous January 21, 2010 at 4:49 pm

Very inspiring. If you're not already, please join AA. It is the ONLY way to have a chance of quitting for good. You will fail if you try to quit on your own. It is a disease and you need the medicine. God bless.

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tiddlyompompom January 21, 2010 at 4:54 pm

awesome, brave, strong, inspiring. That's what you are.

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Kelly @ Love Well January 21, 2010 at 5:57 pm

I'm sitting here with tears in my eyes; I'm so proud of you.

I know you have to fight your own battles, but I hope you know how many of us are impressed with your authenticity, cheering on your determination and praying for your daily encouragement.

Did someone just open a window? Because I feel a fresh breeze that smells like freedom.

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Stephanie January 21, 2010 at 6:08 pm

Oh Heather…this post took tremendous amounts of courage. No matter what, you are an amazing mother…and I'm so proud of you for admitting this. I'm praying it begins a journey of recovery and redemption for you. Know that I will be praying for you and thinking of you!

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Becca January 21, 2010 at 6:29 pm

I have a heart-full right now. I am sorry and proud and humbled and cheering. If you feel a touch on your hand, that's me, being available when you need something to hold.
May God bless you in this journey – and may you find the joy in the steps, even the painful ones.

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Katie at A List Maker's Life January 21, 2010 at 6:31 pm

Your honesty is courageous and inspiring. And while you may feel alone you are not – you have an army of friends and I suspect a crowd of angels cheering you on and ready to encourage you to get up again if you stumble.

love & prayers,
Katie

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Ashleigh (Heart and Home) January 21, 2010 at 6:31 pm

The courage, Heather… wow. You are strong. You will succeed. You will conquer. The Strength inside of you, supernatural, God-given strength, WILL pull you through every hard moment at 4:59. Your authenticity brings tears to my eyes… and I'm just a twitter reader.

You are loved and held with prayer.

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~*Michelle*~ January 21, 2010 at 6:43 pm

I hope you feel this 111th comment as yet one more friend holding you UP…..keep your eyes fixed on Him.

Philippians 4:13

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Stefanie January 21, 2010 at 6:55 pm

You are so brave. I'm so glad you wrote this because you have no idea right now how many people you just helped. It's a ripple effect. But not only did you just get sober but you probably just got another ten people sober. And those ten will help another ten and so on and so on just like the Fabrage Organics commercial (never mind you might be too young for that). Anyway, there are so many of us out here. Just wait until the letters start pouring in and then you will see. You will really see. And you won't feel alone.

Much love,

Stefanie

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Alison January 21, 2010 at 7:03 pm

I'm praying for you.
You are an incredibly strong woman, yet even incredibly strong women have weaknessness. When we are weak, He is strong.

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MomBabe January 21, 2010 at 7:10 pm

Good. For. You.

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ZDub January 21, 2010 at 7:37 pm

Love to you, momma.

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Samantha January 21, 2010 at 7:38 pm

How do you do it, Heather? You take it an hour at a time, a minute at a time, a day at a time, and the next think you know, you have a month of sobriety, then a year, then a dozen years. You don't look at the mountain before you and promise yourself you will reach the top without ever falling. You promise yourself you will take the first step, then the next step, always knowing the top is there, but concentrating on the here and now, not the someday in the future.
You are beautiful and bold and brave and amazing to be so honest and eloquent describing something to personal. You may never know just how many lives you have truly saved by posting this, but know in the depths of your soul that being this forthcoming can only bring good into the world for others who may be suffering too.

Prayers for you…

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Elaine A. January 21, 2010 at 7:46 pm

Heather, you are so very brave to admit this to yourself, your family and US. WOW.

I have a brother who's an alcoholic and it's effected our family for many (TOO VERY MANY) years and it's because he's refused to accept it and get help. His children (all three of them) have gone through SO much as well as his wife.

I will pray for you as your begin your journey to recovery and begin to truly live fully.

I'm so, so proud of you. You're an amazing, beautiful woman, mother and wife.

Much love,
Elaine XOXOXO

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wendy January 21, 2010 at 7:47 pm

Oh My Gosh Heather, you are so brave to admit this and so respected for facing it.
I love you for that. For your honesty.
Why as women/people do we feel like we need to "hide" ourselves from the things that haunt us. In some way, we all have them. ]
I have my demons, and honestly, alcohol can be one of them if I don't watch myself. Why?? I ask myself that all the time.
I have a son who is terribly addicted to drugs and alcohol. I worry for him—for his life—he just lost everything because of it. His wife, family, job—-oh the sorrow and the pain. I cry and cry.
So, knowing THAT, why do I Drink??
life, such a mystery. such a journey, such a revelation about ourselves.
Please know you will be in my prayers. You are not alone girl.
You are real—struggling, like many of us.

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Heather | Cookie Mondays January 21, 2010 at 8:03 pm

brave, brave, brave.
you can do it.
hooray.

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DJB January 21, 2010 at 8:08 pm

I read your blog every once in awhile and I just wanted to tell you how proud I am of you. You admitted a problem and are taking the right steps to take care of it! Big hugs to you as I'm sure this wasn't, and won't be, easy!!

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SUEB0B January 21, 2010 at 8:30 pm

Go!

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woowoomama January 21, 2010 at 8:33 pm

i have not read all of the hundreds of comments that have come in so i am sorry if someone already gave you this suggestion. but, this book is about god and spirituality and addiction and it is really really well done. i think it could help you?

http://www.amazon.com/Addiction-Grace-Spirituality-Healing-Addictions/dp/0061122432/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1264123770&sr=8-1

also as i am sure all of the hundreds of people have said, this post is amazing and you are truly inspirational and i hope that all these comments are driving those negative self talk voices right out of your head.

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becca January 21, 2010 at 8:43 pm

Oh Heather, how amazing you are. Amazing. And Brave. I have not had an addiction but there are MANY things I would like to be able to say. To admit. To confess. And I cannot. I am afraid of saying the words I need to say so I keep them inside. And these words often make me sick because I cannot get them out of me. YOU have said them. And getting the words out is the first step to getting the sickness out. You have taken the biggest, hardest step forward and now we are ALL here to support you. I am amazed by you and applaud you.

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Kaycee January 21, 2010 at 8:52 pm

You are so brave. SO. brave.

The courage it took to post this, to face it. I am sure that you have helped and touched so many people with this. And with such eloquence. I don't know how anyone could read this and not be moved.

Many thoughts and prayers headed your way. You are an amazing person. You can do this.

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Jackie @ Our Moments Our Memories January 21, 2010 at 8:58 pm

Heather, I just love you. I really do. Big, big hugs…

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I'm Beth January 21, 2010 at 9:15 pm

Blessing, Heather. God is with you in your challenges, every day – he is there.

We are there as well, always.

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Queen January 21, 2010 at 9:36 pm

God Bless you for your openness to yourself and the world. Your vulnerability and humility is astounding – amazing.

You can do this. If you could write this, post this, open yourself like this – you can do anything.

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Aunt LoLo January 21, 2010 at 9:54 pm

Oh God. That's all I can give you – a prayer. A prayer for the woman who was introduced to me as my other half. Even in this, I can hear it in my own voice. We all have our own struggles…our own demons. I come from an alcoholic background…a long, proud Welsh heritage, they told me. And you can beat this. Your example will teach your boys. Your example will inspire all the friends here, in your journal.

If you need us, we are here. All 128 of us. We love you, and you. can. do. this. *mwah*

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Ellie January 21, 2010 at 10:02 pm

Oh my, you are brave, and insightful and strong. I've been there – that moment of terror before leaping off into the unknown – dear God how to live without it? Who will I be? How will I feel? It felt for me like a loss of a friend. I mourned it for months (still do). But it is better on the other side — so, so much better. Your writing is stunning, your family is beautiful – you have richness and beauty in your life and you deserve it!

Thank you for your courageous words. Take is slow, be gentle on yourself. Don't let the shame and guilt bring you down. You can do it.

-Ellie

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a Tonggu Momma January 21, 2010 at 10:10 pm

Oh, sweetie… I had no idea. You are strong. You are beautiful. And we all love you. No matter what.

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Scary Mommy January 21, 2010 at 10:21 pm

Do you know how many other women you have helped by writing this post?

You are an inspiration, even in your weakness.

Wishing you strength! xo

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middle age mom January 21, 2010 at 10:32 pm

Heather,

I want to tell you that quitting is the greatest and most loving thing you can do for your children. My father never quit. The drinks were always more important than me. The hurt that caused me lingers even now 17 years after his death.

I know it's an addiction, but my Dad was too weak to quit. Your are strong. You can do this. Your profile says you want to make a difference – you can and you will by doing this for yourself and your family. The difference your quitting will make is immeasurable.

Don't lose sight of the end goal. And if you ever need a reminder, or an ear to listen, you can email me. Even though you don't know me – sometimes it's easier to talk to someone who doesn't know you, doesn't have any expectation or preconceived ideas – it matters to me that your kids have a better end result than I did. So don't hesitate if you need me.

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Neil January 21, 2010 at 10:33 pm

Good for you! Be strong.

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Big Blue Momma January 21, 2010 at 10:51 pm

Heather,

What a brave, strong, and amazing woman you are.

You admitted something that some people are NEVER able to admit.

Just know that, as you read these posts, that there are many, many of us supporting you. Make sure that you get yourself to therapy or to AA so that you get the help to cope with your addiction.

(((HUGS)))

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Hyacynth January 21, 2010 at 10:54 pm

My words won't come out right, but I just wanted to say that you are an amazing, beautiful woman. Praying for His strength for you.

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--It's Your Movie-- January 21, 2010 at 11:07 pm

You are a brave and real and lovely lady. We're all our own kind of mess but letting people see it is not easy. You are so not alone with this.

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Anonymous January 21, 2010 at 11:08 pm

Sobbing because my father never had the strength to do what you are doing.

Your strength is utterly inspiring.

I think for the first time in 21 years I will go pick up my bible.

Thank you.

K

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Kristen January 21, 2010 at 11:12 pm

You are not alone in your struggle. HE is with you, on your side, in the moment, giving you the grace and courage you need-praying for you.

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The Lady of the House January 21, 2010 at 11:19 pm

Wow. I've just started reading your blog and felt intimidated and, obviously, impressed. And then you go and admit you're human too. Now I really like you!
Hang in there. You are not alone.

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Anonymous January 21, 2010 at 11:34 pm

I read this post, thinking you were telling a story, and then, as I read on, I realized that the story you were telling was yours and then I cried and cried because you are brave and beautiful and gifted beyond measure.

I wish I could hug you and hold you and offer a new voice to run through your head. This voice would replace all orger demons, saying over and over, "You are more than enough, exactly as you are. Know that…" Blessings on you and your brave new journey, Destiny D

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Tiffany January 21, 2010 at 11:37 pm

Heather,

I am so glad Kat emailed me your post.

A friend went through something similar last year- unfortunately it took her liver failing {she is only 38!} to realize it was quittin' time.

Thank you so much for sharing- there are so many women that will be touched and changed by this post.

Tiffany

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cmb January 21, 2010 at 11:37 pm

Wishing you every blessing in the new year as you heal. Praying for peace and strength.

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Anonymous January 21, 2010 at 11:43 pm

Goodness… Orger was supposed to be other.

Rely on and refer to this verse. It will give you the strength you need.

Philippians 4:13
"I can do all things through Christ who strengtheneth me."

Destiny D

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tara January 21, 2010 at 11:46 pm

heather, i want to give you a big, big hug. two of them. and then another one.

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Haley January 21, 2010 at 11:53 pm

I am so inspired by your honesty and bravery Heather.

I call tell how determined you are and I know that you will kick the crap out of this Monster that has taken control of you.

No one is perfect, and we all have things about ourselves that we hide. I have something too, but you have lit a fire inside me and I feel as though I may have to do some serious soul searching now myself.

You can do this, you are strong and beautiful….you WILL overcome.

Love You…if you need anything, just ask.

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Mammatalk January 21, 2010 at 11:53 pm

Wow. Look at this outpouring of love and support!! And, this support is a reflection of the kind of lady you are….a great person and friend who can kick this addiction's caboose.

Besides, I can't wait to see how your writing develops once you are actually feeling your emotions. Stand aside, Maya Angelou!

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Blessed January 21, 2010 at 11:59 pm

Heather –
You can do this. Don't give in to the guilt – it just isn't worth it, isn't productive, isn't good.

Believing in you and knowing that God will give you the strength to overcome.

-Jenn

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Jamie @ Six Bricks High January 21, 2010 at 11:59 pm

Oh sweet Heather, I cried as I read your words. You are courageous! While my addiction is not yours, I too have a battle that rages within. I will be praying for you…I promise, I am committing to it.

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Melissa Stover January 22, 2010 at 12:22 am

you can do this! i'll be praying for your strength. hugs to you heather!

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radioactive girl January 22, 2010 at 8:28 am

You are pretty amazing. I am thinking of you and wishing you well. I know you can do this!

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Pam at beyondjustmom January 22, 2010 at 8:29 am

Oh Heather,
So many of us are dancing in and around exactly what you describe. I lived through it with my family and wonder sometimes if I am where you are. You are amazing for bringing it out in the open. Thank you. I'm sure it will be hard, but let the love on this page help you pull through. It's a journey, and we'll be there rooting for you all the way. Even (and especially) if there are trips and trials along the way.
Love and hugs and blessings to you.

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Rachel January 22, 2010 at 9:26 am

You are simply stunningly amazing. And brave. And inspiring to so many! You have taken my favorite part of blogging – the relationship aspect – and taken it to one level deeper – vulnerability.

Don't believe for one second the lie that you are weak. You have just proven that you're one of the strongest people I know.

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Janet January 22, 2010 at 9:41 am

Really? Really? Geesh – the internet is such an amazing place. When I stumbled across your blog so many months ago, I found myself in awe of you. Such a sweet lady, wonderful mom, great friend, together person. These were my impressions of you. And then, today, to find out that you are human, and so incredibly brave. I'm still in awe of you, so amazed at your ability to open yourself up for all to see. God bless you; I know he will give you the strength to do this. I'll be praying for you, as will hundreds of others. And thank you for your honesty – it's inspiring.

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Wendi@Every Day Miracles January 22, 2010 at 10:38 am

As always – my admiration for you runs incredibly deep. More than ever.

You are one spunky and amazing lady and I am ever so grateful that I have found the place where you share who you are.

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charrette January 22, 2010 at 11:24 am

Sweet, wonderful Heather, I love you so much. I can't imagine how much courage it took for you to take this extraordinary step, but LOOK at all the SUPPORT you have! You could call or emailANY ONE of us in a weak moment and we would do everything in our power to buoy you up. Any time of the day or night.

The things we love about you — your heart, your spirit, your faith, your honesty, and even your humor — are exactly the things that will help you beat this.

As you know, we are battling an addiction in our family too. That disease is no respecter of persons — it very often affects the best and the brightest among us. No one escapes the heartache in some form or another. I'm so sorry it found you. But I know you have everything it takes to rise above it. EVERYTHING.

You are officially on the top rung of my personal prayers.

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Kori January 22, 2010 at 11:27 am

I just wanted to ask, do you think I should be ashamed? Do you look at ME and think I am weak? And I know the answer to that, so why in god's name should YOU feel weak or ashamed? Just throwing that out there. And hey man, if I can be sober 11 + years while working and parenting and going through lots of bad shit, then you can, too. A day at a time.

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the lewis 4 January 22, 2010 at 12:25 pm

Hi Heather,

I have never visited your blog before today. A mutual friend (Kim – @prairiemama) tweeted that you needed love today so I am here to give you that.

Your post has brought tears to my eyes. So raw and full of emotion. Yet so brave. You have so many friends that love you. You have a beautiful family. You never need to be ashamed. You never need to feel alone.

Praying for you as you have started the journey to heal yourself from this addiction. Congratulations for taking that first step. You are a strong woman.

Hugs,
Audrey

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Aimee January 22, 2010 at 12:38 pm

Underneath all of this, you are still "you." This does not define you, this dependency on a chemical. You can overcome it b/c of who you are in Christ. Thank you for having the courage to confess outloud–it is then that these walls come tumbling and God is able to reveal His true masterpiece. {I'm striving towards this, too} You don't have to hide anymore. Walk in your freedom. Lots of love and prayers being sent your way.

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Kylee January 22, 2010 at 12:41 pm

Praying for you. You already have the strength. ((hugs))

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Mommy Melee January 22, 2010 at 1:12 pm

SO proud of your bravery and conviction.

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ubiescaelum January 22, 2010 at 1:22 pm

I woke up on October 8th 2007 thinking I had been dead inside for a long time. I didn't do drugs, I didn't have a DUI, I still had a roof over my head. I was employable.

But that gutted filled with tacks feeling had broken me.

You can do this, because I can do this. I got help from groups. One day at a time. If you ever want to talk, feel free to hit me up.

and as a random side note, the talk to me goose? Totally thought somehow your widget could read my name file.

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amanda! January 22, 2010 at 1:34 pm

So glad for you, and for the others that you may help by having written this post. Much love to you as you take this first step.

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Schmutzie January 22, 2010 at 2:11 pm

This weblog is being featured on Five Star Friday – http://www.fivestarfriday.com/2010/01/five-star-fridays-edition-88.html

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Sarah Viola January 22, 2010 at 2:25 pm

Heather, I'm so proud of you, and humbled by you. I know how much strength it takes and how hard it is to admit when things are less than perfect. You are an inspiration.

Things are going to change. You're changing them, for yourself and your family. You can do this.

Love to you, Heather. Love.

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Heidi January 22, 2010 at 2:36 pm

Beautifully written. You are so brave and courageous. I know you can do this. Praying for you!

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minnesotamom January 22, 2010 at 2:48 pm

Wow, Heather. This was very raw, very real. You are a brave woman. Addictions make us feel cowardly, but admission is a HUGE step. Huge. Prayers for you as you begin this journey.

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Midwest Mommy January 22, 2010 at 3:06 pm

I read this yesterday and then came back to reread it again today because I just didn't know what to say. I only got to hang with you for a little bit in Chicago but during that short time I did, I walked away thinking you were an awesome person. And after reading this my opinion hasn't changed, you are awesome. I don't know what to say. I don't know how to be encouraging. I do know that you seem like a strong person who will overcome this.
Hugs.

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Amanda @ The Mom Job January 22, 2010 at 3:22 pm

You'll never know how much we have in common. You are as strong as your desires. (In other words: Kick its ass ;)

XO,
Amanda

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Life Laugh Latte January 22, 2010 at 3:30 pm

I had to read every word. It was so honest and vulnerable, and beautifully written. Sharing things that bind us can make us feel ashamed. We think others will be ashamed of us too. But the truth is that we all think you are brave, and amazing, and beautiful, and capable of conquering. Sara Groves is an amazing woman with powerful words. I'm so glad her songs have touched you in such a powerful way. They are certainly inspired by God. Praying for you. Holly

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Jennifer January 22, 2010 at 4:57 pm

You are so brave Heather!! Wishing you the very best of luck!!!

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Charlotte January 22, 2010 at 5:12 pm

I read this post yesterday, through a link on Allison's blog.

I couldn't stop thinking you all today. I had to come back and read this post. I couldn't believe how honest and forthwright you were.

There are so many of us behind you, so many of us who you don't know, who you've just me. We will be your prayer warriors and give you support during this journey you are untaking.

May you find yourself closer to God as you venture into the unknown.
"Though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for Thou art with me."

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Melissa January 22, 2010 at 6:02 pm

I found your blog through a tweet. I don't know you, but given the courage it took to write this you are much stronger than you feel you are right now.

I wish you the best and will keep you and your family in my prayers.

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Laura January 22, 2010 at 7:12 pm

what a day to stumble on your blog for the first time…

and all I can think of is the amazing amount of prayers that will be said at 5pm

today
and tomorrow
and the next day
and the next

a great idea really…let's all replace that 5pm addiction…be it a drink, a new pot of coffee, a smoke, a box of cookies or tub of ice cream, bottle of pills…whatever the "comfort" is that we feel we need to get through the rest of the day, how about we replace it with prayer?
Can one be too addicted to prayer?
Lord knows I am not addicted enough..

but tonight I will begin
first prayers' for you…
one hour til 5pm….

game on

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Amy January 22, 2010 at 8:12 pm

You popped up in my Shared Items thingy and I just subscribed. You are so brave and so wonderfully articulate. Congratulations on this resolution!

Praying for you–
Amy

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Els Manning January 22, 2010 at 9:47 pm

Wow you write so powerful, and strong, and so honest. Beautiful. I am so amazed by your opening up… and soo deep and raw. Thank you for sharing….

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LoveFeast Table January 22, 2010 at 10:01 pm

Bringing it into the light– one great honest step!! Shine on girl!! Wishing you daily strength, joy, and fully-alive-ness!! Blessings!! Chris Ann & Kristin

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Mom's Sewing Vault January 22, 2010 at 10:16 pm

:) I totally understand the addiction monster. You will prevail!

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Kate Coveny Hood January 23, 2010 at 9:05 am

Oh Heather! I had no idea. But then who ever does… The fact that you are facing things and making changes speaks volumes about your strength and ability to quit for good. And you'll find others here who know your inner demons. People who can help cheer you on and pick you up give you a good kick in the ass when you need it.

And isn't that *why* we're all here? To find others – who can help us find ourselves? You help others with every click on "publish". Now it's your turn to get some of that back – even if it's just knowing that you have others out there to listen. I'm listening. And I'm in awe of your courage.

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...sensible of shoe January 23, 2010 at 5:59 pm

Look at all this love! Hugs to you Heather!

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Aidan Donnelley Rowley @ Ivy League Insecurities January 23, 2010 at 7:53 pm

You are brave and strong and human. Your love for your family – and yourself – shines through these ragged words. I am very proud of you. Does that sound silly? I don't care. I am very proud of you.

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Megan @ Hold it Up to the Light January 23, 2010 at 9:23 pm

I want to be brave like you.

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Marisa January 23, 2010 at 10:40 pm

Thank you so much for your transparency! As you come to mind I will lift you up in prayer. We all have a side we would like to hide from everyone! This post will touch many!

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ChrisTomlinIsMyPretendBoyfriend January 24, 2010 at 1:58 pm

What is your new phone number, I don't have your number and I want to talk to you. Perhaps you've seen me drive by a couple of times, but I'm too afraid to stop. Which is stupid. I know.

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Erin January 24, 2010 at 9:27 pm

I just had to comment and say I am so proud of you! For writing this and for doing what you have to do.

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Evolving Mommy Catherine January 24, 2010 at 11:56 pm

I applaud you for finding the strength to move forward and break free from the monster. Heather, even though this is your battle you have my full and unwavering support.

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Jessica January 25, 2010 at 8:20 am

You are PRECIOUS. . . strong and courageous, I know you will find the strength you need to quit. Thank-you for bravely sharing this, and your journey. You have the love and support of many many readers!

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LisAway January 25, 2010 at 1:33 pm

Love you. Heather of the EO can do anything.

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Motherboard January 25, 2010 at 11:18 pm

I love you AND respect you more than words can say.

The End.

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Jo January 29, 2010 at 11:38 am
seekingclarav January 29, 2010 at 4:34 pm

I came here via Maggie Dammit, via Baby on Bored's Don't Drink Fridays. I am so glad to have found you. First off, right on! You can do this. If I am, and trust me I haven't the faintest idea of "how to" either, then you can. We all can. And I want to shout it from the roof tops because we deserve to.

You are a beautiful writer, and an inspiration. Thank you.

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Pauline January 29, 2010 at 8:11 pm

Thank you. That's just as much as I can say right now.

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cyndifinkle January 31, 2010 at 9:25 pm

you are brave
and beautiful
and strong
and you will overcome.
rooting for you from california

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Annette Lyon February 1, 2010 at 10:10 am

Man, I've been away from my Reader too long–I don't know how I missed this, and I'm hating the fact that I did for so long.

You are truly an inspiration. I'm sure you already know this, but you have tons of friends out here pulling and praying for you.

I can't help but think how many of us have *something* in us, some monster, that we have yet to be so truthful about, whether it's something with a clear name or not. Maybe this will give more of us the courage to find that beast, confess our truth, and walk away from it.

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MsPicketToYou February 1, 2010 at 5:23 pm

your probably sick of hearing this, but this is like a message you sent to yourself that bounced right around your heart and brain and shot out into the universe for the rest of us.

i think i'm gonna print this out…

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Jae February 3, 2010 at 1:02 pm

Honesty is the most freeing thing. Admitting the problem seems huge, until you do it. I was here, where you are, a year ago. I'm still a quitter, and fully present now, for my family and myself.

Your honesty in your blogging is so moving. I never was honest enough to blog about it all. Some, yes, but not all.

I wish you luck on your journey. If you need or want, to talk, shoot me an email.

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Jennifer @ Conversion Diary February 5, 2010 at 5:27 pm

I'm behind on my blog reading and just now saw this. Wow, amazing post. God bless you, thank you for sharing, and you'll be in my prayers! You're really an inspiration.

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Tammy@If Meadows Speak... February 5, 2010 at 6:13 pm

I found you from Corinne's page. I'm just amazed at the courage. It does make a difference to bring into the light. Releasing it, out there. It looses a little hold. So glad you brave enough to do it.

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designHER Momma February 5, 2010 at 11:05 pm

awesome and amazing. you inspire me more than you will ever know.

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suzannah @ so much shouting/laughter February 9, 2010 at 9:58 pm

shadows flee when held up to the Light–which is exactly what you've done here so bravely. may you know sweet grace today.

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Eva February 10, 2010 at 11:45 am

Heather, I've just discovered your blog and am deeply moved. Thank you for your bravery – we have much to learn from you and your beautiful boys.
Eva

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Anonymous March 6, 2010 at 6:09 pm

Heather-
I am so proud of you! You are taking on a great big beast in quitting. You can do it! I would change NOTHING about my life, but I will always wonder what it would have been like to have a dad around who because of his addiction to alcohol was not there. So sending lots of prayers and strength to you to fight this demon and be there for your boys. You are doing a very selfless thing by quitting and I believe in you!
Love & Prayers-
Greta

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Lauren March 17, 2010 at 10:35 pm

Heather, I can't believe I'm reading this months after the fact. Since bringing our beautiful Ethiopian daughter home, I've been hibernating and not reading blogs much. Anyway, I think you are amazing! You are strong and brave and just simply amazing. I pray the Lord gives you the strength daily to grow and resist the temptation.

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Joanne@ Blessed... May 7, 2010 at 11:00 am

Words fail me. Just wish I could hug you.

Hugging you with my heart will have to do.

Love you Heather.

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Sarah August 29, 2010 at 2:13 pm

I just ran across your blog today and had to tell you how appreciative I am of your sharing such a personal journey. As the child of an addict, I find your words very insightful. Unfortunately my relationship with my parent has reached a place where we rarely speak, but I find hope in your stories and wish you the best on your road to recovery. I look forward to reading more about you and your beautiful family.

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Sophie in the Moonlight October 21, 2010 at 12:06 am

I just found you via Katherine Stone @ Postpartum Progress and this post moved me. My husband is a sex addict (Porn being his escape hatch of choice) and is celebrating – scratch that – is currently snoring on the floor in front of me on his 1,095 day, aka 3 years, of sobriety.

He's been working at this for 11 years now and this is his longest sobriety stretch yet. Even so, day 1,095 is just as valuable a day for learning and talking to your Higher Power as day 52 was.

I'm the partner of an addict and I've seen you (in theory) across the table from me during your harder moments that you thought were hidden from everyone. I want you to know that I'm proud of you for admitting to yourself that you have an addiction and that you are seeking a Path of Wellness. To you I give the same blessing I give all who start on their own hard journeys to Wellness whether it be mental illness, addiction, cancer treatments, or Life After Graduation with a degree you're not sure what to do with:

May the road rise to meet you,
May the wind be always at your back,
May the sun shine warm upon your face,
May the rains fall soft upon your fields,
And, until we meet again,
May God hold you in the hollow of His hand.

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23monkeytree October 22, 2010 at 1:41 pm

Go girl…so am I!
Pray for each other by seeing you succeed and be free.
Heal that abandonment depression that snuck up when we were babies…re experiencing thta trauma in flashbacks. Having to medicate so clumsily when just a hug and kind word will do.

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Laura February 15, 2011 at 2:51 pm

there's redemption in confession/and freedom in the light*

those are some amazing words. I just came across your blog today.

started at the top, where you told me to start – and I just have to say:

holy sh*t you are brave.
and strong.

I admire you.
there is freedom in the light.

welcome. and thank you for welcoming me. <3

Laura
lauraluyt.blogspot.com

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Jessie April 28, 2011 at 6:21 pm

Hi Heather-I just stumbled upon your blog and when I began to read your words about addiction I felt like it was me that writing them. I, unfortunately have not reached the same place you have in terms of freedom from addiction, but I am hopeful…and your blog has helped me begin to really think about recovery, so thank you!

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Annette August 15, 2011 at 10:57 am

I found your blog through Jennifer at Momma Made It Look Easy. Your honesty here was so very amazing. A privledge to be allowed to read. Choosing to walk in the light as it exposes all of our imperfections is difficult, but it is also so freeing! Thank you for shairng your story….I look forward to reading more about beautiful family and your journey as a mom.
Annette recently posted..Quick Changes….

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Annette August 15, 2011 at 10:57 am

I found your blog through Jennifer at Momma Made It Look Easy. Your honesty here was so very amazing. A privledge to be allowed to read. Choosing to walk in the light as it exposes all of our imperfections is difficult, but it is also so freeing! Thank you for shairng your story….I look forward to reading more about beautiful family and your journey as a mom.
Annette recently posted..Quick Changes….

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Jackie August 29, 2011 at 9:23 pm

I found your blog, and this post, through Circle of Moms, and I wanted to thank you for putting a voice on alcoholic mothers. I struggle daily with my recovery, and for whatever reason, I don’t have the strength to go there just yet. I wanted you to know how much I appreciate that you do.
Jackie recently posted..30 Day Blog Challenge: Day Uno

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Heather September 8, 2011 at 1:06 pm

Thank you for taking the time to say this. I write my alcoholic story for me and for you. So the fact that you took the time to say it matters to you means the world to me.

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Jeanne September 8, 2011 at 12:11 pm

Heather, I found your blog and am so inspired by you. Extraordinary Ordinary…how fabulous. I’m the 5 o’clock wino. I think it’s accepted. And I’m so tired of feeling like I’m letting everyone down, especially myself. I am also the full-fledged when hubby is out of town crazy ass drunk. And that’s not what I want to be. I’m tired of the obsessing and the worrying. Thank you thank you thank you. I’m in my first week, but this time am much more clear headed, and not afraid. (well, a little afraid but more afraid of losing what is precious to me) :)

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Erica September 21, 2011 at 8:51 pm

Heather, it is no coincidence I found your blog. Ive seen your name float about on Twitter and again, no mistake I’m reading today. I pray, PRAY my father makes the choice to get sober. My father is an alcoholic and has hit what I consider rock bottom. He got taken in last night for drinking and doesn’t even know where he was or what he was doing. I’m hurting too much to ask for details and I don’t know that I want to know. The little I know is enough. Thank you for your honesty. Thank you for letting us, your readers into your head, your world. I am desperately seeking to understand. I just want him better. :(

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Jennifer October 13, 2011 at 3:29 am

Thank you… I just finished my second glass of wine (after I said to myself: “tonight I would stop at 1″, which was just like last night and everynight before that for the last several months). I kissed my kids good night tonight and wondered: when they are adults will they remember their childhood bedtimes as smelling of a wine soaked mom? How sad. I think (for me) wine every night is becoming a problem. It is a good time to stop. Thank you for your words that forced me to see this.

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Laura December 9, 2011 at 10:08 am

I just found this through the Just.Be.Enough site. What courage you had to put this all out there. You are very brave…and strong. I am struggling with my own addiction. While it’s not alcohol, it’s almost destroyed me nonetheless, so I can relate. Thank you for sharing.
Laura recently posted..A Real Tree

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brianne March 25, 2012 at 11:16 am

you quote sara groves a lot, and so do i! the words of her songs help me find myself, too. and the ordinary has become extraordinary to me – i wrote it in my about me! i can tell i’m going to like it here already, and hope to find kindreds through the community surrounding your blog.
brianne recently posted..Healing Begins with Holding Nothing Back

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Catherine November 15, 2012 at 1:59 pm

I found your blog through my friend Allison (Me and Mine) she linked your Open Letter post on fb and I followed..and then I read about you…and then I read this. And I just want to say thank you, and congratulations. Addiction is hard, its a bitch and mother-effer…I know. You are not alone. You are brave and courageous. We stand together. Thank you for your words. I’ve struggled with being able to write about my own addiction (I’m looking for a job so its not something I want to advertise). But thank you, I appreciate your candid words.

New fan,
Catherine

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Bethany March 16, 2014 at 7:30 pm

I am so thankful that you wrote this. It’s now 4 years later, and I just found it through the Scary Mommy blog that I follow. And I thank God that I found it. I’m so sorry that you struggled through alcoholism, but I am so thankful that you spoke up about it in such a candid, honest way. You have no idea how much you’ve affected me and I’m sure many, many more people. That was absolutely the most refreshing, honest thing I have ever read about this topic. I wish to goodness that I knew you and were friends with you, and that I could call and talk to you right now. I need it. Stay strong, and keep on telling your story. God bless.

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Heather March 17, 2014 at 9:21 am

Thank you, Bethany. You’re so kind. Peace to you and God bless you too!

Heather

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Mixed Emotions March 18, 2014 at 10:21 am

Thank you so much for writing this as it put into words what I’m having such a hard time admitting to myself. Moms don’t talk about this because they fear judgement. Friends don’t want to discuss it because it makes them uncomfortable or even worse- it makes them wonder about their own self medication. I don’t talk about it because then I’ll have to actually make the changes I know I need to make. Thank you for inspiring me to make today the first day on my road to LIFE.

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Molly Hutchinson March 30, 2014 at 7:00 am

Hey Heather,
I just read on an old post (I am going through your recovery journey) that you love a “me too” so ….I just sat my husband down yesterday and asked him to read your first post about being big quitter…because …well…me too. I am 16 days into this go round of quitting and I have not been a quitter for 30 years! I wanted to steal your words and make them mine so that my dear husband could take a peak into this brain he is so desperately trying to understand. I did not steal , but as he read and I cried and cried like I am losing my best friend, my lying, my cheating, my toxic, my beloved best friend ……he nodded , loved me still and said “this helps”. So today you get “me too” and “this helps”!! Thank you for freely and thoughtfully twisting your words for us….I am inhaling them these days of late. BTW…Have LOVED Sara Groves for years and years too as she is another word twister who often stops my heart with a phrase. Molly

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Heather March 30, 2014 at 3:58 pm

Hi Molly,

Thank you so much for the me too. I am more than glad that you found a me too in my words. I wish you so much peace in your journey and I think it’s so amazing that you had the strength to tell the whole truth. It’s hard, but so good.

Thank you…

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