730 times

January 20, 2012

It’s been 2 years.

2 years
365 days
plus 365 days
24 hours
strung together

I suppose I could go on with all kinds of numbers, but I’m terrible at math and the day must go on. That’s what they do, you know. The days go on, sometimes walking and sometimes running and sometimes marching. Oh the ones that march, they are the stompy and defiant ones, annoying and hard but entirely necessary.

This morning I woke up to Elsie Talk, crackling at me over the monitor.  I went to get her and nursed her in bed and when she was done she looked up at me and made the silliest face you’ve ever seen. Then Miles came in and sniffed her head and sniffed her head some more. It’s his favorite thing to do. We got up, we three early risers and I made coffee and thought my thinks about being sober for two years. Or, I sort of thought about it momentarily because there was spit up and Nutella and the answering of questions. That’s how it is, I suppose. I don’t get a lot of time to think about much, but when I do think about how many days have been pulled together with no alcohol, I’m still astonished.

While I still struggle with so many of the same old things so much of the time, everything is different. My brain constantly wants to fall back into its ‘isms’ and I get very little time or energy to fight that, and yet, glorious grace abounds in the way that I am still sitting her un-hung-over. It is there in the face of a baby I have no idea if I would have had if I were still consuming copious amounts of red wine and tequila and whiskey, and my heart implodes at the thought of not knowing Elsie Jane. Then Grace h0vers around the way that I can pull it together for these children, to make it just a few more hours with some semblance of patience intact in a way I never could before. And it is there when I totally don’t have patience and I’m able to forgive myself.

It is there in the way that I’m learning to accept myself just exactly as I messy am every once and a while, and it is there in the hope that I can do more of that, as more days pull together.

Here we are, two years later and one recent night I was driving home and it had been a hard day with Big Things in it and I thought, I don’t have to drink. I used to think something akin to, I don’t get to drink, maybe like I felt sorry for myself for not being like normal drinkers. But it hit me, I was a person driven to booze like a moth to a flame, one who could not focus on much other than the carrot at the end of the stick and now, even on that not-so-good day that would have driven me straight to a bottle, I could drive along and not be driven.

That’s a miracle.



{If you’re new-ish here and want to read more about motherhood and addiction, hit up the search box and type ‘sobriety’ or ‘addiction’}


Andrea (Lil-Kid-Things) January 20, 2012 at 8:51 am

I “met” you at the beginning of this journey. I am so SO proud of all you have accomplished. Enjoy your victory friend!
Andrea (Lil-Kid-Things) recently posted..A Mother’s Night {Becoming Mom}

Heather January 20, 2012 at 11:01 am

I’m so glad to have met you, Andrea. You’re so lovely, Mama. All the time, night and day :)

Lindsey January 20, 2012 at 8:54 am

Bravo, lady. I’m impressed and inspired by your candor and courage, and by the beauty and eloquence you bring to writing about everything – not just your sobriety but your LIFE. It’s my son’s birthday, so I find this day particularly meaningful. But it is made even more so by knowing someone I respect as much as you made such an essential and life-affirming choice on this very same day. xox

Heather January 20, 2012 at 11:02 am

Thank you, Lindsey. And happiest of birthdays to you and your seven year old!

Andrea January 20, 2012 at 8:58 am

Way to go! 2 years is huge… then again, every day we do this deal is huge. I enjoy your blog and how you share your story. Thank you!

Sabrina January 20, 2012 at 8:59 am

Heather! Has it really been two years? That is awesome!
Way to go girl!!!
Sabrina recently posted..Fabric Ink T-Shirt

Alexis January 20, 2012 at 9:01 am

Two years is no small thing. And the change in perspective from “not getting to” to “not having to” is huge.

Many hugs to you, this and every day.
Alexis recently posted..Things That Are Random – Over the Pole Edition

Tara January 20, 2012 at 9:04 am

Huge standing ovation going on in Port au Prince.

Encouraged by your transparency.
Touched by your life.
Proud of your moxie.
Moved by your strength.
Amazed by your courage.

Congrats on two years Heather. Prayers for endurance and people around you to help catapult you through the tough times ahead. Raising my glass (of coffee) to you this morning :)

with love-
Tara recently posted..Linking you

Heather January 20, 2012 at 11:04 am

Oh you,
I’ll never forget the day we met and how I knew what I knew about me and still felt so loved by you and inspired by both of you. It was a day that left a huge change in me by way of you guys being you guys. (I say “you guys” for Minnesotan effect. You’re welcome.)

But really. There was a spiritual rumbling in me that morning and it came via how you KNEW I needed your words and prayers and a ginormous hug. Thank you.

Leslie January 20, 2012 at 9:04 am

Heather! Congratulations! I will have 14 months on Sunday. I know the astonishment of which you speak. Mine usually happens when I spend time with friends and drive home afterwards, marveling that things go more smoothly without alcohol, with the bonus of not having to worry about driving…it’s awesome.

Heather January 20, 2012 at 11:06 am

congratulations to you too, Leslie! It IS awesome.
Thank you!

Lisa @ Crazy Adventures in Parenting January 20, 2012 at 9:06 am

Congratufrigginlations, sweetheart!! You’ve done “One Day at a Time” 730 times! Bravo! Here’s to 730 more :)
Lisa @ Crazy Adventures in Parenting recently posted..Join the Internet Blackout. Stop Censorship. Stop SOPA/PIPA.

Candy January 20, 2012 at 9:14 am

Wow, it doesn’t seem possible that it was two years ago that your “outing” blew me away. So proud of you, Heather. You are yet another amazing example of God’s amazing grace. Saddle up.
Candy recently posted..Functional Foodie Friday: Hoppin’ John

Schmutzie January 20, 2012 at 9:33 am

I’ll be at two years in August, so, from one sober person to another, happy anniversary!
Schmutzie recently posted..I Will Never Get Used to Saskatchewan Januaries

Heather January 20, 2012 at 11:08 am

Is it totally selfish that ever since you stopped drinking, I find comfort that you are another person who totally gets what this is like, all the good and the hard and the very best?

Maybe it is, but I think it’s a good kind of selfish. I am proud of us.


Elizabeth January 20, 2012 at 9:57 am

Congrats on two years, Heather. That’s a big freaking deal. Much love.

Kristin @ What She Said January 20, 2012 at 10:02 am

I’m sort of at a loss for words here and can think of nothing to say that wouldn’t sound trite and cliche. I’m merely awed – not only by your strength, but also your insight.

And more importantly, congratulations on two years sober.
Kristin @ What She Said recently posted..To Be a Dad

Amy @amywlsn January 20, 2012 at 10:15 am

Congratulations Heather. Two years is a huge accomplishment. I am in awe. Hope you have a great day!

Kristen @ Motherese January 20, 2012 at 10:15 am

I’m so proud of you and so grateful to you for bringing us along on your journey, opening your heart and sharing it with us. Congratulations on the 730 days that just passed and on all the days ahead. xo
Kristen @ Motherese recently posted..When the Student is Ready

Becky (Princess Mikkimoto) January 20, 2012 at 10:28 am

Two years! CONGRATS!!! Now, go eat a Peep.
Becky (Princess Mikkimoto) recently posted..a near miss

molly January 20, 2012 at 11:45 am

“I don’t get to drink, maybe like I felt sorry for myself for not being like normal drinkers.”

This exactly, Heather. I still feel sorry for myself. And I’m still faltering. I’m not sober yet. I still falter. It’s not often. But I know that doesn’t mean I’m not an alcoholic. Sometimes it seems like it would be easier to just give in. I like to be numb at night after the kids go to bed. I like to feel nothing because most days I feel too much.

I think you are amazing for being so open and honest about this subject on your blog. I am not secretive about much on my blog. But this? I can’t write about it for some reason. I’m scared.

Congratulations to you on two years of sobriety!
molly recently posted..Old habits die hard. Like really hard.

Heather January 20, 2012 at 11:51 am

I’ve been saying that sober. Still having my days where I wish I could. I suppose that wish will always be there in some small way and that’s why I have to be vigilant about sobriety. When I am, it seems I slowly SLOWLY work my way toward being more and more glad that I don’t have to drink anymore. Because it very much felt like I HAD to…

I believe in your strength more than you do right now, but I think you’ll get there. I really do. Be patient with your journey, keep talking about it in whatever way you can and then simply be open to what happens. You never know, it may just happen even when it feels impossible. I know that’s true for me.


Ann January 20, 2012 at 12:25 pm

This place is grace, and I’m so sorry that rhymed.

It is for me, this website and you and your sobriety.

SoberJulie January 20, 2012 at 12:45 pm

Oh Heather I’m so happy for you, what a great display of how we CAN change our lives!! My 2 year is in a few weeks, I’m so happy to celebrate with you.
SoberJulie recently posted..5 Tips to Stop an Anxiety Attack

robin January 20, 2012 at 1:30 pm

congrats on 2 years! It is a God given miracle when us alcoholics don’t *need* it anymore. So glad that miracle has found its way into your heart.
robin recently posted..mario kart birthday cake: how we made it

nicole January 20, 2012 at 1:53 pm

Excellent day. Great words. Way to go Heather. Love that quote too.
nicole recently posted..What It Is Really Like: A Giant Van

Tricia (irishsamom) January 20, 2012 at 3:00 pm

So proud of you. You have grown in amazing ways, which are evident in your writing and you are an amazing inspiration to the rest of us. Keep on keeping on.

Tricia : )

Erin January 20, 2012 at 3:23 pm

Wow, Heather, I remember when you first came out true on your blog– shared your heart, your raw. I can’t believe it’s been two years. I am so proud of you.
Erin recently posted..Randomness

Emmy January 20, 2012 at 4:35 pm

So so awesome!! So wonderful and so good for you. That truly is something to be proud of.
Emmy recently posted..Memories Captured: Little Boys

@maggiedammit January 20, 2012 at 4:47 pm

730 times, yes.

I got a card this morning that took it even further:

Happy 63,113,852 seconds of awesomeness, my friend.

Love you.

kendal January 20, 2012 at 5:15 pm

oh. just oh. at the awesomeness of sobriety. at the awesomeness of story shared.
kendal recently posted..and as i write

Jessica January 20, 2012 at 10:47 pm

You are wonderful.
Jessica recently posted..Funny Faces Friday

Gianna January 20, 2012 at 11:03 pm

Congratulations. I don’t know what it’s like to stay sober after having an addiction, but I think the same way about food–especially sweets.
I used to think, “Oh, man! I don’t get to have another treat today!” When really I shouldn’t say that, I should say, “I don’t need a treat.” And yet, everyday I think, “Shoot! I’m done for the day! How am I going to go the rest of the day without chocolate or ice cream or sugar to look forward to.”
Gianna recently posted..Mom Awakenings

Jamie January 21, 2012 at 7:42 am

Congratulations! You are such an inspiration!!
Jamie recently posted..Awake

Galit Breen January 21, 2012 at 9:24 am

Heather? You’re amazing, you know that right?

Congrats on two years and your heart and your words.

{Congrats so isn’t the right word here, but you know what I mean, right?}
Galit Breen recently posted..January, Captured

But Why Mommy January 21, 2012 at 4:47 pm

You are amazing and an inspiration for women like me. You courage to speak about your sobriety really had an impact on my getting sober. So thank you a million times over and congratulations.
But Why Mommy recently posted..A Moment

Sarah January 22, 2012 at 9:36 am

You are inspiring and oh-so-brave. Congratulations on 2 years! You’re amazing:-).
Sarah recently posted..Courage: Project 1

Barb January 26, 2012 at 9:53 am

Awesome. Congratulations! I’ve been lurking here for quite a while… always inspired by your candor and courage and the ease with which your writing seems to flow out of you and in to your readers. But this is a huge accomplishment and it deserves me coming out of the shadows to say Bravo!
Barb recently posted..Present in PJ’s and Swimsuits

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