6 Years

As douchey as it may come off, I love documenting my life online. I have both a great and an awful memory, so being able to write about different stages of my life is super helpful to me. In fact, I have that exact post topic saved in my drafts for the future (so don’t steal it). 🙂

This post is coming a day early since May 20th falls on a Friday this year and I can’t miss my weekly Five Things Friday post. I also figured that today would be a good day for reflection since I do my best work in these thinking out loud posts.

OK folks, let’s get real. Tomorrow I will have 6 years clean.

6.

Years.

6 Years Recovery

Where does the time go?? Six years of no drinking, no drugs, and almost no cigarettes (last to go). I’m still that weirdo who doesn’t actually want to smoke again but talks about how good they smell when they’re first lit and sometimes creeps behind a smoker to second-hand some smoke. But ANYWAY, I digress.

Last year’s 5 Years post was much more structured and heavy, but I wanted this year’s to be slightly opposite.

In reflection, my fifth year of sobriety was probably the hardest one so far. Well not probably, definitely.

I almost lost my marriage, went through some serious self-discovery and put in HARD work in the therapeutic space, found out that wanting to erase myself from existence was also considered a suicidal thought (whoops), and was finally diagnosed with anxiety and depression. I started medication which made a TREMENDOUS difference and it was such a relief to know that there was actually a reason for such intense low periods in my life.

Since coming into my own and slowly solidifying who I am as a person, the urge to escape life with drinking and drugs has significantly subsided. I’m still able to successfully play out what would happen if I went out drinking with friends or start recreationally doing drugs again (I don’t even understand what that means), which quickly dissuades any fantasies I may have about having “one casual drink.”

onedrink8

(source)

My battles with exercise and food haven’t resurfaced since I first went through them, which is mainly because I try and stay vigilant as to the motivations behind my behaviors and continually examine my feelings and emotions.

Addiction is an insidious disease and for anyone who hasn’t gone through it, the drugs, alcohol, food, exercise, shopping, etc. are really just symptoms of an underlying issue.

Addiction for me is using and abusing anything I can to change the way that I feel. To control. To fill some kind of bottomless hole that I can’t ever seem to stuff enough outside crap into. Once I start, it’s extremely difficult to stop and life can spiral out at an alarming rate.

I’ve been lucky. True, I’ve also put in a lot of work, but there were many, many situations where I could have overdosed or significantly injured myself and because I was living alone, no one would have been there to help or revive me. Because of that, I try to be grateful for everything I have and every chance I’m given.

I want to thank you all so much for being here and for coming back to read my ramblings and drool over food pictures.

This blog has gotten me through some of the toughest times in my recovery and writing these posts has allowed me to process certain thoughts and events, all with the intention of helping others see that there’s always hope and there’s always a way through even though sometimes it gets hard. Real hard.

Basically, you guys rock. 6 years rocks. Life rocks.

Since I’m uncomfortable without structure in my posts, I’m going to wrap it up with six things that I want you to do today:

  • Write down three things you are grateful for today.
  • Tell someone you love them, even if it’s your pet. They can understand you (probably).
  • Do one thing for yourself. (Mine will prob involve food) 🙂
  • The next time you look in the mirror today, tell yourself you are enough.
  • Tell someone the truth about how you’re feeling instead of saying “I’m fine” if you’re not.
  • Smile
  • BONUS: Follow me on Instagram (if you don’t already) because there may be a surprise for you tomorrow on my actual clean date.

Question:

  • How has your year been??
Follow:

45 Comments

  1. May 19, 2016 / 5:32 am

    LOVE YOU. I am so glad that I call you a friend. Even if I never see you anymore because our schedules are so cruel to us.
    Susie @ SuzLyfe recently posted…Of Boy Bands and DaydreamsMy Profile

    • erinsinsidejob
      May 19, 2016 / 7:41 pm

      I know! We have to fix this. I say you just quit.

    • erinsinsidejob
      May 19, 2016 / 7:41 pm

      Thanks Megan!

  2. May 19, 2016 / 6:58 am

    Congrats Erin this is a big deal and no easy task. I have a lot of addicts in my life and they struggle daily and I am always praying. So proud of you! Here’s to 6 more years!!!

    • erinsinsidejob
      May 19, 2016 / 7:41 pm

      Cheers to that!

    • erinsinsidejob
      May 19, 2016 / 7:42 pm

      Thanks heather!!

    • erinsinsidejob
      May 19, 2016 / 7:42 pm

      Thanks Pragati! That’s exactly my hope 🙂

    • erinsinsidejob
      May 19, 2016 / 7:42 pm

      Thanks bri!

    • erinsinsidejob
      May 19, 2016 / 7:43 pm

      Thanks Catherine!!

    • erinsinsidejob
      May 19, 2016 / 7:44 pm

      Thanks Jen!

    • erinsinsidejob
      May 19, 2016 / 7:44 pm

      Here here! Thanks Amanda!

    • erinsinsidejob
      May 19, 2016 / 7:44 pm

      Aw that’s so nice! Right back atcha!

  3. May 19, 2016 / 1:27 pm

    Erin, I love this, and I love you. I love your honesty and total transparency. Healing is SO possible, and I am really thankful that God preserved your life in such a beautiful way, and you are growing in so many amazing ways. You are so beautiful, and it SHINES through your words. Realness is always better than fakeness. For 7 years, I struggled with being addicted to the idea of a perfect body and being addicted to wanting to eat food but not eating it, and being FREE is AMAZING! Freedom. Wow! So thankful we can all share the things we’ve left behind, so that we can grow!
    Emily recently posted…WIAW: Why I Love the WIAW Link-upMy Profile

    • erinsinsidejob
      May 19, 2016 / 7:45 pm

      That’s so sweet Emily! You’ve definitely come a long way as well so congrats to that!!

    • erinsinsidejob
      May 23, 2016 / 11:14 am

      Yay! Thank you so much and I miss you. We need to see each other sometime!

  4. May 19, 2016 / 8:49 pm

    Thank you for sharing your story. A very close friend is currently struggling with alcoholism. He’s making a lot of progress, so it’s very promising, but I know it’s hard for him and not always something I understand, although I try my best to be supportive and patient.
    Maggie recently posted…Dancy McDancePantsMy Profile

    • erinsinsidejob
      May 23, 2016 / 11:14 am

      That’s really all you can do unfortunately. Thanks for reading Maggie. Best of luck to your friend 🙂

  5. Cecilia
    May 20, 2016 / 1:02 am

    Your insight is always amazing 🙂 congrats on this huge accomplishment!!!

    • erinsinsidejob
      May 23, 2016 / 11:15 am

      Thank you!!

    • erinsinsidejob
      May 23, 2016 / 11:16 am

      Thanks Sara!!

    • erinsinsidejob
      May 23, 2016 / 11:16 am

      Aw thanks Ellen! Hope you have a great day!

    • erinsinsidejob
      May 23, 2016 / 11:19 am

      Thank you!!

  6. May 20, 2016 / 9:35 pm

    Congrats Erin! That is a huge & amazing accomplishment! Your story and journey is so powerful, insightful, and inspiring. I love reading reading your thoughts!
    Kerri McGrail recently posted…6 Best Ways to Improve DigestionMy Profile

    • erinsinsidejob
      May 23, 2016 / 3:43 pm

      Thanks so much Kerri!!

  7. May 23, 2016 / 8:22 pm

    Congratulations Erin! You are very inspiring. Thank you for sharing your journey!
    Amanda recently posted…I’m back!!My Profile

    • erinsinsidejob
      May 24, 2016 / 8:07 pm

      Thanks for reading Amanda!

  8. Ashley
    May 26, 2016 / 9:35 am

    I was on my honeymoon last week and am now catching up on posts which is why I’m late to this, but I just wanted to wish you a huge congratulations! You have accomplished something that is no easy feat and should be very proud of how far you have come.

    • erinsinsidejob
      May 26, 2016 / 9:38 am

      Thank you Ashley! Congrats to YOU on your honeymoon!!

  9. Jake
    May 26, 2016 / 6:36 pm

    Excellent dedication! It takes tremendous inner strength and courage to break an addiction. It takes even more to write about it. Thanks for sharing!

    • erinsinsidejob
      May 26, 2016 / 6:44 pm

      Thank YOU for reading. I really appreciate it Jake!

  10. June 9, 2016 / 3:59 pm

    Erin,

    Great read. To be 6 years clean at such a (relatively) young age is just…wow. Hat’s off to your efforts.

    This was my favorite when you said: “I’m still able to successfully play out what would happen if I went out drinking with friends or start recreationally doing drugs again (I don’t even understand what that means), which quickly dissuades any fantasies I may have about having “one casual drink.”

    Everyone experiences this moment, whether conscious or unconscious as they get older and move into the early 30’s. You point out something that is really important: that we can lessen our temptation’s to re-engage with unhealthy decisions by simply re-watching the replays of our past.

    It’s awesome see that you’re making strides forward to a cleaner, more addiction-less life. You’re an inspiration! Thank you for your hard work! And for the Tweet like too.

    All the best to you,

    TrueCurate.com
    Twitter @truecurate

    • erinsinsidejob
      June 9, 2016 / 4:11 pm

      Thank you so much for taking the time to visit and comment! It’s my goal to offer hope to others and hopefully show that there is life beyond addiction 🙂

  11. Leslie
    November 25, 2017 / 11:36 am

    Congrats to you Erin. You remind me so much of my youngest daughter because she is also an atypical example of a drug user. She went thru a period of time using drugs to numb her pain about abandonment issues with her dad – went from over-achieving student to being expelled for a year. Spent a few years fighting everything and everyone, and then finally got herself back on track. She worked hard and graduated college, has a very successful career in CA and is now 24, a perfectionist who is OCD about scheduling her life, which I understand is how she stays straight. I tell everyone she is a force to be reckoned with and that looks can be deceiving since she is only 5’2″ and about 110 lbs. I am very proud of her and I applaud you for your courage and for sharing your story to help others. Keep up the good journey.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

CommentLuv badge