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  1. #1
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    1st November, 2015.
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    10 years sober today

    Shall I post on this reflective day on the site where I shared my beginning of sobriety? Yes, indeed, I shall. Hello to anyone who may remember me and good luck to all...

    And now.... sound effects.. drum roll please....

    Yes, today I have reached the milestone of being totally and utterly sober for 10 years. When I realised that this day was so close I was mixed with varied emotions.. yes, I'm proud of myself.. but should I celebrate.. if so how would I do that? For me its another day.. just like all those before it.. its the same day as the others.. its this day and for today I do not drink alcohol.

    That being said I am proud. I came here to MWO 10 years ago when there were about 20 people on a very different looking board to this.. I read for about a month before I posted.. I was literally terrified. It really is jumping into the abyss.. I'd had all the excuses.. I had the realisation about the extent of my lying to myself.. the only thing I could do if I wanted something different for my life was to actually DO something different. In my heart I knew that people who are actually sober dont regret it.. not the way you do when you wake up hungover.. so while the rest of life may not be perfect at least I dont wake up hungover... and when people show celebration with a fancy glass with some alcohol in it, I'm happy for them to have that but I know that for me its a lie.. a drink with alcohol in it is poison to me.. not a celebration at all. I'd held way too many of those fancy glasses in my time and fooled myself.. no more.. no more. I stuck to the people who were steadfast sober.. and many of them fell by the wayside.. and I can say that if they came back, none of them were happy about 'slipping' (hate that word its active not passive to drink) back into the abyss... I got embroiled in the abstinence moderation wars.. for me I know moderation never worked and never would... the purpose of my drinking was to find oblivion.. and although I have no idea if anyone has found moderation to work here while I was posting (and that was for quite a few years) I never found anyone who succeeded at it... and for me it was too much of a risk to investigate so I kept away from the moderation thinking.. its way too slippery a slope for me... and put the thing I value most at risk.. my life.

    So what makes the change work?.. how can you make it sure that it lasts? Is my sobriety forever? I know that at first its fragile.. sometimes its a minute by minute thing.. there is luck involved.. but I think the thing that helps the most is hang on to HONESTY. If I always break my promise to myself and keep going back to drinking then I cant rely on myself to keep a promise.. is that who I want to be? Do I like people who break promises? Who do I want to be? That old saying, the greatest predictor of future behaviour is past behaviour.. so I know that at first its hard to predict that I'll stay sober.. but the longer that I do the more likely it is to continue... so long as my sobriety is not broken.

    Can I be sure that this sobriety of mine will last? Well, who knows what will come along.. I've had some big knocks over 10 years, from family deaths to cancer - four operations and six months of chemo.. and having got through those sober does not keep me as a forever sober person.. its a daily thing and a mindset.. no matter what I wont drink... so while I"m a solid sober person I dont fool myself that life knocks can shake a person and I have my strategies at the ready at any time.

    Does it get easier? Yes, it does. I'll say that again. Yes it does. I spend a lot of my time around alcohol.. at the beginning I avoided being around alcohol as I was not strong enough and I fixated on minute detail around drinking and people drinking in an OCD type of way.. I went through quite a long hibernation phase while I tried to build resilience.. and if I felt being around alcohol was a risk to me I would go back into hibernation.. I'm happy to sip my tonic water or juice, be the designated driver.. I'm not going to fool myself that just one would be 'fun'. At the point that I stopped drinking I can say with absolute certainty that it was not FUN... I was really really low at that point.

    I've found quite recently that I've changed a number of things in my life again.. these changes are conscious.. things that I want to bring into my life.. ways that I want to live... and as changes are needed, I can continue to adjust things.. but one thing I will not adjust and that is my sobriety. Its simple for me, if I want to live, I have to breathe.. but for me I also must be sober in order to life because when I was drinking I was literally dying.

    To new people starting out hang in there.. some of the transition into sobriety is hard fought and plain hard but it is totally and utterly worth it. To anyone who may remember me please know that I am happy... (not perfectly 'movie happy ending happy', but happy)


  2. #2
    Registered User. available's Avatar

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    1st November, 2011.
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    Well ATTTT a huge congratulations on 10 years sober. I will be you one day. I had a smile when i read your post as my thinking is basically the same as yours. I had to be honest in my quit and it is only my choice if i drink. Being sober is hard fought but as the time goes on it does get easier but i always have a plan for any situations that may arise.

    Take care and thanks for your post.
    AF free 1st December 2013 - 1st December 2020 - 7 years of living and it just keeps getting better

    Ava is a SHPFFFDU ! (Special, honest, practical, fantastic friend from downunder) - thank you NS

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  4. #3
    Forum Subscriber. Guitarista's Avatar

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    12th October, 2008.
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    Congratulations ATTTT!

    Bravo friend. Love it when you drop in. Thanks. G

    'I am part of all that I have met, yet all experience is an arch wherethro', gleams that untravelled world whose margins fade, forever and forever when I move'

    Zen soul Warrior. Freedom today-

  5. #4
    Registered User. Sunbeam's Avatar

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    31st January, 2008.
    Great Lakes Region, USA.
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    Thanks for dropping in, we need to hear more from the truly long term people. Life only gets better, I believe.
    My life is better without alcohol, since 9/1/12. My sobriety tool is the list at permalink 236 on the toolbox thread under monthly abstinance.

  6. #5
    Forum Subscriber. NoSugar's Avatar

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    16th January, 2013.
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    Like Ava, you so clearly articulated how I feel about sobriety, ATT. It is encouraging to read that you're as committed and grateful after 10 years. Thanks for showing us what our futures can be. Congratulations on achieving 10 years! NS

  7. #6
    Forum Subscriber. abcowboy's Avatar

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    1st September, 2014.
    N.E. Alberta.
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    CONGRATULATIONS ATTTT!! It is inspiring for me and many others like me to read posts like yours, showing us that long tern sobriety is doable, and more importantly, worth it!
    Quitting and staying quit isnít easy, itís learning a whole new way of thinking. Itís accepting a new way of life, and not just accepting it, embracing it...
    Worry about tomorrow, tomorrow. Just get through today. Tomorrow will look after itself when it becomes today, because today is all we have to think about.
    Friendship is not about how many friends you have or who you've known the longest. It's about who walked into your life, said "I'm here for you", and proved it.

  8. #7
    Registered User. Pie's Avatar

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    28th June, 2010.
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    Bravo, ATT! And thanks for coming back to share your success!

  9. #8
    Forum Subscriber. Lavande's Avatar

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    13th February, 2009.
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    CONGRATS on 10 years AF ATT!!!!!
    Wonderful to see you, glad you dropped in again.

    Wishing you the very best!

    AF since 03/26/09
    NF since 05/19/09
    Success comes one day at a time

  10. #9
    Registered User. lex's Avatar

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    30th June, 2015.
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    ATTTT so very glad you posted this! Lex

  11. #10
    Registered User. starty's Avatar

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    8th July, 2015.
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    Amazing ATTTT Thank you for showing us it can be done and done well. Congratulations on such a deserving milestone

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