Reactions (past): Life is 10% what happens to you and 90% how you react to it. – Charles R. Swindoll
I’m just going to cut to the chase and give you a clear picture of what alcohol does to an lush like me: a codependent, conflict adverse, people-pleaser who needs validation, praise, love and acceptance from others. In my right mind, I’d never be on a rooftop as my family approached my front door below shouting “WTF are you doing here!?!?”
And on that note…
Intervention #1, 2006
My sister was concerned after I shared something disturbing that had recently happened when I was drunk at another DUD’s. Disturbing enough that she felt it was time to get my parents involved. All 3 of them arrived unannounced. They calmly expressed their worries and asked why I was so sad. I recall mentioning not being pleased with my life, depression and whatever else I could muster up for self seeking pity. There was no drama. I knew I had a drinking problem and I was going to fix it! I set out to stay sober for 2 weeks. And I did. But then I drank again and I picked up right where I left off. I moved back in with my parents for the last time and gained SOME control but not for very long (per usual.)
Fast forward 6 years and being the go-getter that I am, I managed to set myself up for not 1 but 2 interventions, back to back. Go meeeeee!
Intervention #2, February – 2012
In Skeletons 2.3, I talk about the events leading up to this quiet sit down. It was just H & my parents and once again, I was calm and not defensive. But that’s only because I was sober and knew I couldn’t talk my way out of this one. H asked me why I kept relapsing and my dad said “it’s the disease.” At that moment, I silently agreed with him. I had no defense of my own. Once again, I solemnly swore that I was done drinking for good.
I told you what happened next: I took advantage of a stop to run into the store for something and prepared for Intervention #3 by smuggling 2 mini-boxes of wine back home for a rainy day.
Ha! Just kidding…
Intervention #3, the very next day
I also share details about what led up to this showdown in the post before this.
You know that horrible feeling when you wake up in the morning, not remembering something troubling from the day before and then you do remember and your heart sinks? I’ve experienced this feeling many times, post drinking and not drinking. Well this was my reality waking up and I was going into panic mode. My mom was talking to my mother in law and what I was hearing discussed enraged me. I was chain smoking in the back yard trying to think of a reasonable excuse I could give my boss as to why I had to miss work.
I was beside myself. Not because I was being forced to quit drinking. I knew I needed help stopping, just not the level of help everyone else was insisting I needed. I was trying to tell them all this but no one was listening to me. I knew how much I was drinking and it sure as fuck did not require a supervised detox and 30 days at an inpatient facility.
But again, no one was listening to me. My internal need to be heard was being ignored and I felt like I was being a treated like a child; and in their defense, I WAS acting like a child. 100%. My power of choice had been taken away from me and I was throwing a tantrum.
Long story short, I did end up getting evaluated. Physically, I was not in withdrawal and I answered all questions honestly, thus determining what I already knew: I qualified for outpatient rehab, NOT inpatient and I started the 6 week program right away.
When I have shared scathing details of my drinking career, people say “I can’t picture you acting like that.” I know. Neither can I. When I think about all the questionable and downright unacceptable things I did, it almost feels like a completely different life. Like, I can’t even fathom living that way.
But I did. I lived it. And by the grace of God, I lived long enough to come out the other side. However, my inability to take responsibility made it take much longer than it should have. As a result, I stayed a dry drunk until December, 2016.
It wasn’t long after then that God said “alright, she’s ready now” and intervened in a way that made me question EVERYTHING.
Including my chosen path of recovery.