From a young age, I had a taste for alcohol. I desired the delightful woozy, boozy release wash over me.
For as long as I can remember, I also had a thirst for perfection.
The more I learn about myself, the more I see how my behaviors came to be.
Like everyone, most of my ways of being were formed in early childhood.
My behaviors perhaps originated to protect me, and stayed long after their job was done.
My enneagram tells me I am a high achiever (3), perfectionist (1), and helper (2).
This makes *perfect* sense to me.
One time I took the test as a 1,2,3 and the next as a 3,2,1.
Regardless, the way I operate is, 1- everything needs to be perfect 2- I want to help and please others immensely and 3- I have to be the best at everything all the time.
I was the first child of divorce in both my families at a very young age.
Naturally, anyone who loved me, was concerned for me. This kind of childhood...
I attended a Special Olympics basketball game the other night and I learned so much.
My experience with basketball is limited. I played basketball on a team for one season in middle school. I didn’t understand any of it. I was terrible at it. Growing up with a single mom, we never even watched sports. I had no idea what I was doing and it was incredibly frustrating.
I had a huge respect for the athletes on the court the other night.
I joined the basketball team in middle school, because my friends were basketball players. I was trying to fit in. The coach and the other players spoke in what sounded like a foreign language to me. They would run plays called “Michigan Blue”. I don’t know what that meant. It was a secret to our opponent but it was also a secret to me. Was “Blue” right or left? What was I supposed to do?
Sometimes I was supposed to “set a pick”. I didn’t know what this...
May is the busiest month of the year in my house.
I think this is true for many families, especially those with kids.
There are all the end of the year extras that completely fill our calendar.
We have award ceremonies for academics, sports tournaments, and more.
It's the final push for everything, when we’ve been running at high speed, since returning from Spring Break. Everything is due and all the deadlines are rapidly approaching.
One more field trip to squeeze in. One more banquet. One more project. One more celebration. Not to mention the emotions of a season full of endings.
In Chicagoland, it snows in April and the next day it’s 80 degrees. Summer seems to just appear when it wants and we are anything but prepared.
We’ve still got our winter coats hanging on hooks in our laundry room and our patio furniture stored in the garage, when the weather turns to the heat of the dog days of summer somewhere in mid May.
When I first quit drinking I wanted everything in my life to stay exactly the same. The only difference would be that I was no longer drinking. I didn’t want anyone to know if I was drinking or not drinking, and I definitely didn’t want it to be the topic of conversation. I feared my relationships would change, or that others would feel uncomfortable around me. I wanted to go on living my life, only somehow secretly not drinking alcohol.
Now, at 3-years sober, I realize how that was both unrealistic, and not in my best interest.
Looking back it doesn’t surprise me that I had all of these expectations. I had set myself up to live an unliveable life in many ways. I wanted to go unnoticed and keep everyone around me happy at all times. I also never wanted to feel anything. If I started having an intense feeling, I would get disappointed in myself. It was easier to pretend it didn’t exist. Whatever the feeling was, it had to be wrong, and it was my...
For a long while, I've struggled with drinking to have fun and drinking to relieve and escape some of the monotony and fatigue of the day-in, day-out routine of working full time as a database developer while also trying to be "everything" for my three young children.
Sometimes a glass of wine seems like the only way to get through a dinner with a screaming toddler who doesn't want to eat, homework with older kids, dinner, bathtime, storytime, etc. It exhausts me even thinking about it, but I knew the wine was also increasing my exhaustion, my anxiety, my daily internal struggle that I wasn't doing my best either at work or at home because of what I was holding onto: wine.
With my older kids now 9 and 7, they were beginning to see things in me that they hated when I was drinking, and my entire goal of being an amazing mother was falling away from me. I was putting so much pressure on myself to be perfect, using wine as an escape from that pressure, and then failing at the very...
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