6 Years of Sobriety, My Head in the Clouds, My Feet on Solid Ground

I turned 6 years sober yesterday. It was anticlimactic and tranquil. This was a big change from the previous year, when I had an absolute meltdown over my five year milestone. 


You can read about it in these blogs:

5 Years Sober, A New Home Inside of Me

5 Years Sober, Here's What I Wish I Knew on Day 1

5 Years Sober and I Want a Glass of Wine


And all previous annual milestone posts are here:


Reflections on 4 Years Sober

3 Years Sober is Luxury, not Deprivation

Reflections on 2 Years Alcohol Free

I Have An Announcement To Make - 1 Year Sober

I knew my soberthday milestone was coming up, and I was looking forward to it. I am used to feeling an onslaught of dramatic emotions leading up to sober milestones, but this one felt like it was quietly sitting in the background. Happily. Content. Not demanding a lot of attention or fanfare as it has in the past. I know better than to rest on my laurels, so I decided to withhold any conclusions until the day had passed. 


As Rumi so eloquently wrote:


This being human is a guest house.
Every morning a new arrival.

A joy, a depression, a meanness,
some momentary awareness comes
as an unexpected visitor.

Welcome and entertain them all!
Even if they’re a crowd of sorrows,
who violently sweep your house
empty of its furniture,
still, treat each guest honorably.
He may be clearing you out
for some new delight.

The dark thought, the shame, the malice,
meet them at the door laughing,
and invite them in.

Be grateful for whoever comes,
because each has been sent
as a guide from beyond.


I woke up the next day with the same sort of steadiness. The Soberthday wasn’t taking up space. Don’t get me wrong, I was delighted by my daughter's first thought of the day, saying, “Happy Sober Day, Mom,” and my firstborn from college texted me, “I am so proud of you!” My husband ran out on his lunch break to grab me a bouquet of tulips. A favorite flower that bloomed outside my bedroom window in my early years. I received a text from my mom. My sober gal pals reached out first thing in the morning with celebration and an unspoken knowing. I will get together with them later this week. I had a happy hour with my girlfriends; they made a toast to me, or rather, I did, and they followed suit. It is my card club, after all. We laughed when tequila spilled on me. It was very sweet of my inner circle to acknowledge this huge change in my life. I appreciated it. 


It was very unusual for me to have no expectations or demands on this milestone day. I felt very grounded in myself, in my sobriety, and in my lack of need for outside validation or affirmation. I am an extrovert who loves feedback, after all. Trust me when I say I planned my sober coming out speech for my entire first year of sobriety. 


The day was slipping away, and I hadn’t even mentioned it on social media.  I was so busy doing my work as a sober coach. I had a full schedule. I didn’t even have time to post about it. Talk about off brand! I had no preplanned post. I had no big words, reflections, or lessons learned. There is no list of achievements like in years past. No blog post was hot and ready to go when the clock struck twelve. No newsletter. No strategy. What the heck was going on? 


I tried to drum up some emotion (as one does) when they want to write an article, inspire others, and celebrate a job well done. I read through my blogs and posts from previous years. I felt proud. I can see very clearly how I continue to grow in all sorts of ways that I couldn’t imagine when I set out to get sober a lifetime ago. 


In the past, I’ve watched others who’ve gone before me grow tired of talking about sobriety after years 4, 5, and 6. Some forget all together about the day. I was curious if this would happen to me too. I am happy to report that it hasn’t. 


There has been a shift in my desire for celebration and acknowledgement. I feel I am standing on really solid ground. Sobriety seems to be tightly woven into my tapestry of life now, the way alcohol once was. It is simply who I am, and I don’t see that changing. Holding people’s hands through early sobriety continues to be my favorite thing to do. I am not sick of it. It is not getting old to me. I have not outgrown this. If anything, my sixth year marks an increased desire to make a bigger impact. To not only help individuals but also build a sober community. Not in a big box store kind of way, helping everyone with everything. 


I recognize my limitations. I am not for everywhere. But I am for some, and those are the people I want to reach. I have cultivated a small, intimate community of high achieving professional women. My coaching services offer a boutique experience within my Insider Community. We have less than 20 people on the group calls. We are all professional women. Usually, less than 10 women join live; the others watch the replays. Connections are made, and together, we watch each other transform. In our private app, we witness the first alcohol free weekends and vacations. We link arms through Friday nights, kids travel sports, alcohol fueled work dinners, and more. Spouses don’t always get it. Sometimes they even try to sabotage our progress, maybe without realizing it. We’ve got each other. We realize we’ve outsourced everything to alcohol, and we work to repair and rebuild our lives. We hand each other our best tools. Podcast recommendations, mindset shifts, sober treats, and more. We are better together. Members directly message each other. I love making connections.  


We learn together in monthly masterclasses. This is when I can spotlight other coaches and the good work they are doing in the world. I would never expect to be someone’s only tool. I want my clients to throw the kitchen sink at alcohol. I roll up my sleeves and start filling the sink with the sharpest tools right alongside them. I love that. I am not tired of it. I just want to keep doing it. I just want people to continue to seek help and find me. Find us. Join the Insider Community and be known, seen, and supported. Learn to receive. It’s so hard. I know. It took me too long on my own journey.  


Some of my client’s can barely make it a few days without alcohol. When they get to a week or more, I ask what’s helping them, and they say, “I want to be a coach like you someday. I want to get through this and help others. I already know that’s ahead for me.”


Tears spring from my eyes. Yes, yes, and yes. I know. I know how this feels. I was there, too. So I share how to get credentialed as a Certified Professional Recovery and Life Coach, and then I teach them How to Launch a Coaching Practice


I sought out to heal myself and, in turn, wanted to help others. Then the others wanted to help others, and the sphere of making a sober positive impact continues to grow. I am proud. It’s a big deal. I am smack dab in the middle of my dream coming true. I’m not doing it for ego, maybe that is one of the biggest changes in year 6. I don’t have anything to prove anymore. I’ve already done that. I am not competing with anyone. Who me? I’m the problem; it's me. Yes, my red hot jealousy has come up to bite me in the past. But not today. Scarcity, perfection, and achievement have been wired in me, but I am softening. I work towards ditching old patterns along with alcohol.  

Year 6 is appreciating. Noticing. I am focusing with my head down. I am doing my work in my lane. It feels very good. I wake up and let my creative juices flow. I am always seeking new ways to reach people and offer the best support. I find ways to elevate the coaching industry because I believe so strongly in it. I watch transformation happen daily, and generations heal before my eyes. I am not tired of this yet. It excites and delights me as much now as it did on my first call. I am honing my craft. Getting better at coaching, writing, speaking, sharing, connecting, and collaborating. I feel myself being called for more. I rise to the challenge. This year, I was awarded Top Sober Coach 2023 by The Coach Foundation. I had the opportunity to speak to a room of over 100 people at Sober in the City. My Launch Your Coaching Practice course was featured in the New York Post. All very good signs of alignment and growth. Thank you for being a witness to me. If I can support you in any way, your  Complimentary Call awaits. Step inside the Ditched the Drink boutique, window shopping is available with my 7 Day Free Insider Trial Membership.


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