Kate is a mom of 4, a school nurse, a wife and she has been sober for 5 years. Kate was a normal drinker in high school and college. She dabbled and partied and drank like most 20 year olds. After having her first child and becoming a stay at home mom, she found herself lonely, bored, and experiencing a new reality that wasn’t what she thought it would be at all. Drinking at 5 p.m. to reconnect with her husband or hanging out with mom friends became a nightly habit.
When her youngest son was born with special needs, her drinking increased, yet it felt manageable to her.
This is where her story is so relatable to so many of us: She wasn’t hitting rock bottom. She would have a bad night and stop drinking for a few months, but eventually she would pick it back up again.
Then one day, the bad night just wasn’t worth it.
Though quitting wasn’t easy for her, she’s now 5 years sober, she isn’t dreading hangovers, feeling guilty, or worrying about disappointing her kids. She is now living a beautiful sober life.
Join The Sober Mom Life FB group – https://www.facebook.com/groups/1542852942745657
We have merch!!!! Check it out here!
Speaker 1 (00:00):
I wish more people would listen to our podcast.
Speaker 2 (00:02):
I know. I feel like this is why we need to do an ad. So this is an ad for brand new information, a pop culture and political podcast.
Speaker 1 (00:10):
We’re a couple Gen Xers who talk about pop culture and political stuff on the brand new information pop culture and political podcast.
Speaker 2 (00:19):
Okay. But we’re not a couple we’re siblings. It sounded like you said we’re a couple <laugh>. That was so gross. No, we’re siblings. That’s my brother. I’m his sister. Listen to us wherever you get your podcasts.
Hi. Welcome to the Sober Mom Life podcast. I’m your host, Suzanne of my kind of suite and the sober mom life on Instagram. If you are a mama who has questioned your relationship with alcohol at times, if you’re wondering if maybe it’s making motherhood harder, this is for you. I will be having candid, honest, funny conversations with other moms who have also thought maybe motherhood is better without alcohol. Is it possible? We’ll chat and we’ll talk about all things sobriety and how we’ve found freedom in sobriety. I don’t consider myself an alcoholic. You don’t have to either. Maybe life is brighter without alcohol. I hope you will join us on this journey, and I’m so excited to get started.
Hello. It’s another Friday. It’s almost the weekend. So that is just in time. We have a real sober mom chat for you. I chat with Kate today. I think this might be the longest chat yet. Kate and I just could not stop talking about alcohol and sobriety. I love this chat so much. She is, if anyone listening, she’s into Enneagrams and I have not taken mine yet. I feel like I need to go do that right now. She’s into them. She’s the type A perfectionist. And first of all, I, of course, I love hearing people’s sobriety stories, but the drinking stories are also very interesting to me because Kate is like, she looks like she has her whole life together. She’s got it all together. And then she’s telling me about the time she got kicked out of a bar, and it’s just like, I just love it so much.
It’s so real. It’s so relatable for anyone who, I mean, yeah, when you drink alcohol, you guys, shit happens. Okay, shit, that wouldn’t normally happen. That’s what happens. So I love this conversation. Kate has been sober for five years. She’s an inspiration to me. I know she will inspire you and I love it so much. Also, don’t forget to go join the Sober Mom Life Facebook group. That’s where I’m finding all of these mamas we connect on there every day, all day, throughout the day. They are sharing tips and tricks and inspo and questions and support and just all the great sober and sober curious stuff. Also, if you are loving the show, please follow it wherever you listen. Rate and review it. Share it with some friends, some sober curious moms, and then come and follow me on Instagram at Sober mom life and tell me about yourself. Let’s go chat. Come and connect with me over there. Okay. I know you’ll love this episode with Kate. Okay, we continue. I still don’t know what I’m calling this am Is it the Real Moms Sober Chats? Yeah.
Speaker 3 (03:44):
Maybe a play on Real Housewives since you love them.
Speaker 2 (03:47):
So wait a second. Yes. Okay. Okay. Oh, okay. Well, I have Kate here and she just gave me the best idea. I love that. Those real Okay. Okay, we’re gonna do that.
Speaker 3 (04:01):
It’s totally my guilty pleasure too. I think to myself when I’m watching and my husband says, I actually can hear you getting dumber when you’re watching <laugh>, but I mean, I can’t help it. It’s just a train wreck. You can’t help but watch.
Speaker 2 (04:14):
It is what I escape to now. I don’t need alcohol. I have the Real Housewives also. You watch those ladies. I You never wanna drink again, especially when New York is on. Oh, no. It’s just like they are the biggest shit show.
Speaker 3 (04:30):
Oh my God, it’s so bad. And Luann with all of her drinking and stuff.
Speaker 2 (04:34):
Oh my God, I
Speaker 3 (04:36):
Read that forever. I thought, oh girl, you are headed down such a bad path
Speaker 2 (04:40):
So bad. And Dorinda Dorinda makes it nice until she gets one drink in her. Oh my God. And she’s just evil.
Speaker 3 (04:50):
But she’s the best to watch. I just love her.
Speaker 2 (04:53):
She’s the best. That’s the thing. It is a train wreck, and my husband watches it with me, so it’s so funny. He does. Oh my, my God. He loves it. Okay, we are not here to talk about the Real Housewives because I could go on and on and on. Actually, I now I wanna do that. Okay. So tell us a little bit about you first, and then we’ll get into your drinking story.
Speaker 3 (05:14):
Yeah. Okay. So I am a mom of four. I have three roles and a boy. I’m 48, so about to hit that five.
Speaker 2 (05:25):
Oh, you look amazing.
Speaker 3 (05:26):
Oh, you’re so sweet. Thank you. You just
Speaker 2 (05:28):
Made my day. You do.
Speaker 3 (05:29):
I’m a nurse. So currently I’m working as a school nurse, which is actually the best job I’ve ever had because, and it’s amazing. And it’s at my son’s school. And so really enjoying that. I have three sisters that I’m super close to, really great family, and I’m five years sober. Celebrated.
Speaker 2 (05:49):
That’s amazing. I know. That’s amazing. That’s an inspiration.
Speaker 3 (05:54):
Thank you. Really. Of course, the first year was a huge milestone and it was amazing. And then every subsequent year, of course, yoga, but for some reason this five years just, it really hit me a ton of bricks. I’m like, I never thought I’d be five years sober. So it’s crazy to actually be there.
Speaker 2 (06:14):
That’s incredible. Five years. Okay, so let’s go back. Let’s talk about your relationship with alcohol. What was that
Speaker 3 (06:23):
Really unhealthy? I mean, it didn’t start out unhealthy. I mean, I think I drank pretty much like everybody else. I knew for, certainly, I didn’t drink a ton in high school, but I dabbled here and there. College, I felt like I drank everybody else. Went to a big football school, did the sorority thing. My husband was in a fraternity. He loved a party. I mean, we had a great time. I didn’t look around and think, oh, this is gonna go haywire. I feel like in our early twenties, certainly drank everybody else around me, motherhood. I had my first, so my oldest is 23, and so I had her young, I was 24 when I had her. We got married really young, so we got married at 21 and 22, which if, oh God, thank God my girls are not quite there yet, but I mean, ready to get married.
They are past 21 and 22. I have 23, 21, 15 and 13. So I’ve got a big spread, same husband. Everybody’s like, oh dear. No, God’s plan was a little different than mine. But anyway, so it was pretty, I think pretty normal, normal <affirmative> up until motherhood, I would say I stayed home with her. So that was my first time being a stay at home mom. And I was lonely and I was bored, quite frankly. And I had all of those weird things that nobody tells you about. Everybody’s like, oh, we’re gonna be so in love with your baby and it’s gonna be the greatest thing ever. And I was like, okay, I love her very much, but this isn’t what I thought it was gonna be. It just wasn’t exactly what I thought.
Speaker 2 (08:01):
Speaker 3 (08:03):
So during that time, I would say I was definitely that five o’clock, pour a glass of wine or open a beer. My husband and I loved sports, so we would, whatever was on hockey or football or basketball, whatever, we would just have drinks and we would reconnect after a long day and get the kids to bed and just have that time together. And so that was manageable, seemingly <affirmative>. I mean, it was anything outta the ordinary. Certainly had girls nights, book clubs, things like that where it was a little bit more wheels off because I didn’t have the responsibility of putting the kids to bed or things like that. I would say probably around 30, I sort of started to question it. I was drinking every day and I wasn’t getting drunk every time I drank, but the bing on the weekends was getting a little bit outta control in the sense that I would just wake up feeling so terrible, physically terrible <affirmative>.
And as I got older, those hangovers got worse and worse. And then my sister and I had a conversation. It was one of those where you’re just chit chatting on the phone. You’re not really expecting to have this really bombshell type conversation. But we had a conversation. I was probably in my mid thirties, she’s a few years younger than me, and she and her husband had gotten sober. He had had some issues with some prescription medication and alcohol. And really she recognized that she had an unhealthy relationship with alcohol. So I started asking her a lot of questions, which I’m sure as being sober now, as soon as you get sober, everybody starts asking you questions. And they’re usually the people that are questioning their own relationship.
Speaker 2 (09:48):
And you could tell, it’s kind of like, well, wait a second. What does this mean about my drinking?
Speaker 3 (09:53):
Exactly. So I started asking her a lot of questions, and I started really confiding in her that I was just feeling these horrendous amounts of shame. And I think the shame was around not intending to drink so much <affirmative>, even sometimes being really conscious that, Hey, we’re gonna go out tonight, or we have a party, or we have this or that, but I’m not, I’m just gonna have two or three glasses of wine tops. That’s it. And you get two or three glasses of wine in me, and I’m going straight for six. It goes zero to 60 in a heartbeat. And so she shared with me, she’s like, yeah, that’s how I drank. I was like, really? I didn’t know that. And so we started having this really kind of open dialogue about it, and it was helpful to know that she understood what I was kind of facing. I was in no way ready to quit drinking, by the way,
Speaker 2 (10:48):
Speaker 3 (10:48):
I just wanted to drink everybody else. So that was probably my mid thirties ish. And then towards my late thirties. There just were so many instances. And I actually, <laugh> kept a list of them on my phone because I would wake up the next day full of shame and regret. I would feel like, why did this happen again? I don’t understand. And so I started keeping a list, and girl, that list is so ridiculous. I still have it.
Speaker 2 (11:18):
Do you still have it or no, I
Speaker 3 (11:20):
Still have it because any time I wanna drink, I just go back and look at that list and immediately it’s like when you hear a song and it takes you straight back to where you were.
Speaker 2 (11:30):
Speaker 3 (11:31):
And so I look at that list and I’m like, Ugh. And I can just feel those feelings of what that felt like. And it just, it’s so, it’s just nauseating. It’s so awful.
Speaker 2 (11:41):
That’s so interesting that you made the list at the time. <affirmative>. I feel like for me, I don’t think I was even letting myself really look at what alcohol did and what I did under its influence until I stopped. And then when I opened that door, then I was like, oh my God. Yeah. So that is interesting. You were like, no, I see what’s going on. And so the wheels were definitely turning. Well,
Speaker 3 (12:08):
Yeah, the wheels were turning. And I, I’m such a kind of typical type, a first child <affirmative> person. I’m very goal oriented and driven. And I could not, for the life of me, figure out why I couldn’t get this thing under control. I can do anything I put my mind to. I’ve run marathons and half marathons. I’ve raised these amazing kids. I have this great marriage. I have a strong faith life. I have all these amazing things going for me. And I could not figure this shit out, <affirmative>. And it was making me crazy. And so after I got sober, I went back and I started looking. I was trying to figure out where did it go off the rails? Cause I clearly knew that my relationship with alcohol was not, I don’t know if the right word is healthy, but it was definitely questionable. I just didn’t know exactly what had happened.
And I think that we would go out, it was mostly binge drinking at that point, on the weekends, have people over cookout, lay by the pool, all the stuff that seems so normal. But it became really unpredictable for me. And that was big because I remember at one point we had an event to go to for my husband’s work, and I was like, maybe this is so stupid. Maybe if I could take a Sharpie and I just write a number on my hand four, then when I’ve hit four glasses of wine, I’ll remember to stop you never to me to stop. I mean, I would be out with my girlfriends and they’d have a few glasses, and then they’d have a glass of, or they’d be like, oh, good. No, no, never. Never.
Speaker 2 (13:57):
Right? Because you who was making those decisions, <affirmative> of, I’m just gonna have two, I’m just gonna have max four. The alcohol just totally took over your Bri that that was no longer you than who was gonna moderate in quotes, whatever that means.
Speaker 3 (14:15):
Right. I think that as I got older, but when I was a kid and a teenager, I’m probably a young adult. I think I really thought that I was an extrovert. I love to be around people. I love to be the life of the party. Everybody wanted Kate. I mean, some of my husband’s fraternity brothers used to call me Wedding Kate, because we’d go to weddings and I’d get so wasted. It was fun. It was so much fun. Everybody wanted hang out with me. And yeah, now that’s like, Ugh, that just hurts to even think about that. But at the time, oh, the to hang out with me, <affirmative> <affirmative>. But as I got older, I think what I realized is that I’m really, really an introvert at heart. I think I masked a lot of it with alcohol. It helped <affirmative>, it lubricated everything. It made everything easier. It made it easier to talk. I thought I was really funny. I thought I was. Yeah, you
Speaker 2 (15:07):
Just cared less. Right.
Speaker 3 (15:08):
Lot. Totally, totally, totally. I definitely recognize that my relationship, it was something different than what other people were experiencing. <affirmative>. I think when I look back now, I think when it went kind of off the rails, and I wasn’t really aware of it at the time, that my son, who’s our youngest, and our only boy was diagnosed with autism when he was three. And I knew something was off. I knew something was off with him. But he was so adorable, and he was so social, and he was not meeting milestones. But I thought, Lisa, boy, I don’t know anything about boys. I have three girls. So when we got that diagnosis, it was so devastating, and it was just heartbreaking, to be honest. And I didn’t know. I was so full of fear, just fear, what does this mean for him, for his whole life? What does this mean for us? Yeah. How could we do this to our other kids? We had three other kids that were things just going and blowing and now we have a special needs child. It was a lot. Yeah, it So I know, and I’m sorry, I didn’t mean to get emotional, but
Speaker 2 (16:17):
No, of course.
Speaker 3 (16:19):
Some painful times. But what I noticed at that time, I, well, I didn’t notice it at the time, but looking back, what I can see is that three things happened. Number one, I don’t know if you know anything about Agram or anything like that. I
Speaker 2 (16:33):
Have not taken mine
Speaker 3 (16:34):
Yet. Oh, girl, you, you’ve gotta do it.
Speaker 2 (16:36):
I know. Why haven’t, okay, I gotta do it.
Speaker 3 (16:39):
Yeah. I have a girlfriend that’s an Enneagram coach, and she’s amazing. But anyway, I’m six. So in stress, you go to three and three is like, get her done. I’m gonna get this shit done and handled. And so when that happened, I was all hands on deck. This is not taking my kid, this is not taking my family. We’re gonna figure this out. And it was like therapy. Therapy. I mean, it was just like blinders. I’m figuring this out. Yeah, great. That’s great for that particular situation. But then in order to deal with stress, I became hyper, hyper focused on exercise. So I was on my elliptical or out running over an hour a day, lost a ton of weight, <affirmative>. And I thought that was a good thing because it was helping me relieve my stress. And it was, except that I liked the weight loss, and I also liked my wine. And so, yeah, what was happening is I’d be counting those calories, but I would be saving however many.
So anyway, at that time, I think I definitely started to drink more, to soften the edges to sleep. I wanted to be able to sleep. I wanted to be able to be a good mom, which is ridiculous now. But I wanted to be relaxed and all of this. That’s kind of where it took me. And he’s 13 now, and he’s doing great. And we’re wonderful. Oh, good. But those patterns of behavior just sort of continued. And so <affirmative>, I took a few stabs at sobriety after certain events that would happen. The first time that I thought there’s something like, really, I gotta go get some help. We had been out for a friend’s birthday, had a great time. We were all at a bar dancing, yada yada. And I got kicked outta the bar. I don’t remember getting kicked outta the bar, but I got kicked outta the bar.
And my husband was furious, rightly. I mean, he was furious. He was like, that’s so embarrassing. And we had a huge fight. When we got home again, don’t really remember that too much. But the next morning when I woke up, I was like, okay, this’s, gotta stop. I can’t keep doing this. And called my sister and talk to her and cried. And I remember telling my husband, maybe I need to go to AA. Now, this was probably, I’m 48, so this was probably 10 years ago. There wasn’t all this wonderful support. I had no idea where to go. I had no friends that were sober. My sister was sober. That was the only person I knew that was my age, that was sober. My uncle, my dad’s brother was a severe alcoholic, and he was in and out of aa. And so that’s all I knew to do.
So I pulled myself together and went to a meeting, and it was so hard. Oh my God, it was so hard to walk in there. And I got home and I was like, okay, this shit’s not for me. Right. <affirmative>? Nope. Okay. I’m not where those people are. That is not me. So yeah, trudging forward. I’m just gonna moderate. I’m just gonna not drink too much. I’m just gonna make myself notes on my hand, whatever I need to do. Yeah. And it’s gonna be fine. It’ll be fine. And the thing is, Suzanne, and I don’t know if you experienced this, but it’s fine. A lot of times it was fine. And that kept me drinking for a long, long time because I would have a really bad night. And then I’d have a couple months where there was, yeah, I might drink, might get drunk. But it wasn’t ugly. It wasn’t bad. It wasn’t fights it. So it kept me drinking for a long time. So I had another stab at sobriety a couple years later after an embarrassing situation. My daughter, I was actually in Chicago and my daughter was playing competitive volleyball. And we were those tournaments, I don’t know if your kids are old enough yet, but when you start going to those
Speaker 2 (20:56):
Tournaments, I’m scared. I’m scared of all the sport things that I
Speaker 3 (21:00):
Hear legit party central for the parents. Really? Yeah. Oh my God. Okay.
Speaker 2 (21:07):
That is okay.
Speaker 3 (21:09):
Yeah. So it was my oldest. She was probably, I think maybe 16. And I had taken her and my second daughter with me. So she was 14. We were in Chicago for the weekend for a tournament. And all the parents went out after the dinner. So the girls go with you for a while, then they go back to the hotel, and then the parents went out. And I just got shit faced. And I don’t know how. When did it happen? I have no idea. Yeah. It was like, I didn’t think I was drinking anymore than anyone else, but my husband wasn’t with me cause he was home with the little ones. One of the dads had to walk me up to the room and I don’t remember it. My girls put me to bed. Don’t remember that. The next morning was Easter. It was Easter morning, and we had planned to go to the sunrise for Catholic.
And we had planned to go to the sunrise service at the cathedral downtown <affirmative>. And the girls woke me up and I knew they were so mad and I could feel it, but I was in such shame and such, oh, it’s the worst when your kids are old enough to know you try to potent. It took everything in me to pull myself together, get dressed, and go to mass. And I’m sitting there in mass. I’m like, please God. I hope I just didn’t ruin my kids. It’s just, yeah, it’s horrible. And you just pretend like everything’s fine. You just don’t say anything about it. You just pretend like, oh girl, I’m fine. Oh yeah, I feel great. Everything’s good. And we finished that and this was the way that I would make up for things. I would try to do something really nice the next day to make up for it. So we flew home the next day and we had two tickets in first class and one in coach. And I said, I’ll take the coach ticket, and you two sit in first class. And they thought that was so cool. And I was like, right. I did the good thing. Yeah.
Speaker 2 (22:59):
You’re like, I’m off the hook.
Speaker 3 (23:00):
Yeah, yeah. Came home from that trip and I was like, Nope, I gotta be done. So I went back to aa, went to a different group. I was like, okay, I gotta go to a different group. And I was sober that time for probably, I think about five months. And I was going to AA fairly regularly, a couple times a week probably. And I met a woman that was about a little bit older than me, but similar circumstances. And she was very helpful and there are lots of really helpful things about it. And it kept me sober for a few months. My mother-in-law was diagnosed with terminal brain cancer. And this is how the brain of somebody who’s a drinker works. So we’re outta her house. And
Speaker 2 (23:45):
Speaker 3 (23:45):
She’s like, do you think it’d be okay if I had a margarita on these painkillers or something like that? And would you have one with me?
Speaker 2 (23:52):
Speaker 3 (23:53):
She didn’t know I was trying to be
Speaker 2 (23:54):
Sober, so she didn’t know. And
Speaker 3 (23:56):
Then my brain was like, well fuck you up.
Speaker 2 (23:59):
I margarita, right? You’re like, I have to. Of
Speaker 3 (24:03):
Course I’ll So back to drinking. So that opened it up for another, that was in 2014, and I quit in 2017. So that was three more years of drinking after that. And lots of different things that incidents that happened. And I got to add to my list multiple other horrible things that I wish I didn’t have to add. But I know you talk a lot about rock bottoms and whether or not you have to have one. And I’ve been really thinking about that. I think what’s interesting about alcohol is I think it takes whatever it takes, and for some people, yeah, it’s jail, it’s a dui, it’s a whatever. For me, it was an incident that happened at a family reunion, and it was so soul crushing to me. I didn’t even do anything that horrible. It’s not like I mm-hmm <affirmative> stripped off my clothes or anything else. But I got really drunk and my kids saw it and I woke up the next day and I just was like, I cannot live in this shame anymore. I mean, can’t the deal, God, I can’t know what the hell to do. I can’t figure
Speaker 2 (25:17):
It out. Why
Speaker 3 (25:18):
Does this keep happening? I’m trying everything I know to do and it’s just, the unpredictability is just, I can’t control it. I can’t control the unpredictability. So I was never drinking every day, never drinking in the morning. Mine was definitely binge mostly on the weekends. I would drink during the week, but I can have a couple glasses of wine while I’m making dinner. And it wasn’t an ordeal.
Speaker 2 (25:42):
Yeah. So, so interesting that you said that it wasn’t every time, which is what made it harder to know to stop. It did. Because it’s not this idea of this stumbling, hiding bottles all the time, drinking daily, shaking in the morning, drinking to stop shakes, <affirmative>. I think I relate to your story more than any other because hey, you could have two glasses of wine and be fine, but then you just never knew.
Speaker 3 (26:13):
Speaker 2 (26:13):
Knew. And looking at you, I mean, you are so put together. You’re just the picture of perfection. And that type, you can just tell that that’s not you, that that’s the alcohol and that wasn’t you. So then that, yeah, I think that chipping away at acting the weight, I cannot believe looking at you that you got kicked out of a bar. You’re not the person. Oh
Speaker 3 (26:39):
Speaker 2 (26:40):
You’re not the person who would get kicked out of a bar. Bar.
Speaker 3 (26:44):
And I think for me, I think that the part that was, I can’t remember which guest it was that you had on, but one of them was talking about how it was the insides versus the outsides. And so, yeah, I don’t think that my friends would tell you. I mean, believe me, they, we’ve had some crazy nights, but everybody was crazy. Yeah. And I don’t think that they would tell you, oh my god, Kate had a problem. In fact, I told them that I was quitting. They were like, what are you talking about? You’re fine. Which also made it harder, by the way. Cause I was like, yes, no, here’s what you don’t know. I’m not fine because inside I’m not fine. And I think I posted about it in the Facebook group. But what really did it for me was my sister just said to me, she’s like, you know, might not drink anymore than your friends drink, but they don’t hate themselves the way you do afterward.
Speaker 2 (27:38):
I think it was Jill from Sober powered <affirmative>, who this reminds me of, that she was talking about. It’s like, sure, the drinking was a lot, but it’s the shame and the internalizing, all of that, that just like, yeah, that’s soul crushing.
Speaker 3 (27:54):
And it was the cognitive dissonance of knowing that I am this person and that God created me to be this person. And I have all of this together and I know that I have all this amazing potential. And yet over here is the person I feel like. And it was just awful.
Speaker 2 (28:14):
And it turns out it was just the alcohol and it wasn’t you. Because now and five years, I mean five years sober. That’s incredible.
Speaker 3 (28:26):
Oh, thank you. It is incredible. And at the beginning I see a lot of posts on the Facebook group and stuff about, one thing I really want to share is that, and I don’t know if this was your experience or not, but let me back up. So <affirmative>, when we get sober, I say, oh my gosh, all the anxieties better and everything’s better. It’s wonderful. Okay. Yes. But it gets worse before it gets better. Yeah. Honestly. And at the beginning I was like, well, I’m not addicted. I don’t have a physical addiction. It’s just like a psychological thing. It’s a habit. But what I realized when I quit was that I felt so prickly. I was short-tempered and I was just not much fun. I was just kind of trying to just get through the day. And it wasn’t like that white knuckling like, oh, I gotta have a drink.
Speaker 2 (29:20):
Speaker 3 (29:21):
But it was just like, I don’t feel good. I don’t feel like myself. I don’t know what’s wrong with me, but leave me alone. Just that kinda stuff. And oftentimes when people ask me, I’ll say, especially when I was in the very beginning of sobriety, probably that first three months or so, I felt like I was walking around with a sunburn all the time. And anything somebody would say or do was a slap on the back with a sunburn. Yeah. It was more intense. It hurt more. I was easily irritated. And quite frankly, I got to where I just went to bed early, I was like, I really go
Speaker 2 (29:57):
To bed. Totally. I
Speaker 3 (29:59):
Would grab my book, my quit, and I was like, I’m sorry, I’m gonna take a bath and I’m gonna bed.
Speaker 2 (30:06):
So I’m so glad you bring this up because I mean, I get slammed for it sometime on Instagram that I make sobriety look easy or to whatever, which to that I’m like, first of all, if I have 30 seconds to talk about sobriety, it’s gonna be something good because of course. But I’m glad that you talked about it because it does make sense that the first couple months of sobriety is hard because you took away your number one tool. Yes. For coping, for social anxiety, for anxiety, for sleep. Even though you don’t sleep well. But still, you think you do for all of this stuff that’s gone and you don’t have new tools yet, you don’t know what the hell you’re doing.
Speaker 3 (30:51):
You have no idea what you’re doing. All the firsts are hard. The first birthday, the first Christmas, the first Thanksgiving, the first New Years, all of that stuff is so hard. I mean, think that, yeah, you’re right. You don’t have the tools and you’re literally, for me, I felt like the whole one day at a time thing wasn’t as much about one day at a time of not drinking as it was about one day at a time of trying to figure out how to do this.
Speaker 2 (31:19):
Speaker 3 (31:19):
How do I just get through the day?
Speaker 2 (31:22):
Yes. I think that that’s so, and the fact that you turn to sleep, I did the same thing cuz it’s like when you don’t know what to do when you’re just flooded and when you’re just beside yourself, generally that means you need sleep.
Speaker 3 (31:39):
And I have so many years of really not great sleep because I would fall asleep and then I would wake up in the middle of the night and my heart would be racing and I would be so sweaty and I was thinking, oh my God, I’m in menopause. Cause I would wake up and really, no, just get outta here.
Speaker 2 (31:58):
And we don’t even know what good sleep is until we get good sleep. And then you’re like, oh, that wasn’t sleep. Right. Sober sleep is just the best.
Speaker 3 (32:08):
Oh, it’s the best. It’s the best.
Speaker 2 (32:10):
And so at five years now, how does sobriety feel? Are you, because I think a lot of people in the group, they ask, am I always going to crave that or want to have a drink? Or is this gonna go away? So where you sit now at five years, how does that feel?
Speaker 3 (32:30):
Well, I think I really try not to project into the future in the sense of am I never gonna have a drink again? Yeah. I’m very, very honest with myself that I don’t need, I should not drink. I just, because I think I might be able to go a year or two and be pretty in control of it. But at some point for me, I really feel like my, what helps me is I feel like my body chemistry is such, whether that’s genetics or whether it’s physical. My body chemistry is such that when alcohol hits, it just all bets are off. I just don’t know. Yeah. I just dunno.
Speaker 2 (33:08):
Right. Yeah. And you can go back to that list too. You have that list, right?
Speaker 3 (33:13):
Yeah. I go back to the list. I try not to project too far in the future. And then I think I just try to look at, I have such a beautiful life. One other thing I did wanna say, if it’s okay, is that, cause I see a lot of questions about it in the group is that my husband still
Speaker 2 (33:28):
Drinks. Okay. Yes. Okay. He does.
Speaker 3 (33:31):
The beginning was very hard because it was the thing we did together. It’s been a learning curve and it’s been a journey. He’s very, very supportive of me, <affirmative>. But I asked him the other day just because I thought it’d be funny. I was like, do you miss me drinking? And he’s like, here’s what I miss <laugh>. Like I miss the sweet spot that, you know what I mean? That really great when we’re just, everything’s great. We got a good vibe
Speaker 2 (33:59):
Before it turns.
Speaker 3 (34:00):
Yeah. Yeah. He’s like, I don’t miss the term like that. I do not. Yeah. But I just wanna encourage people that your spouse, first of all, it’s very personal. So whatever works for your marriage and for your style of communication. But we’ve been able to make it work and it really, we’ve had a few bumps in the road, but it’s really gone. Great.
Speaker 2 (34:24):
That’s great. Ours is the same. My husband still drinks. Not a lot, but it’s like the same <affirmative>. It is a learning curve cuz we’re both trying to figure it out and it’s set a boundary. He honors it and breaks it once or twice. I was
Speaker 3 (34:40):
Gonna say, I love your boundary. I don’t think
Speaker 2 (34:44):
It’ll break. And then we’ll talk about it. And then it’s like, okay, so if you’re gonna break my boundary, you gotta let me know ahead of time. So then that’s the new, you know, gotta give me a heads up. You gotta communicate. You can’t catch me off guard. And so that’s a new boundary then. And it’s just, it’s a living and breathing thing for sure.
Speaker 3 (35:05):
Yes. Absolutely. Absolutely. I love that you’re talking about just other ways. I mean, I have lots of other coping things that I do in groups that I’m in and books that I read, all the stuff that everybody’s doing. But it’s so nice now to have people who are being public about it and yeah, really talking about it. Cause that was all I wanted when I first recognized I had an issue was like, I just need to talk to somebody like me
Speaker 2 (35:30):
And to know that I don’t belong in a dark church basement.
Speaker 3 (35:35):
No, it never felt exactly right for me. I just didn’t have anywhere else to go. So I stayed for about a year and the girl that was sponsoring me at the time, she, and she was like, well, you haven’t been to a meeting. I was like, you know what? I think I’m good. I appreciate everything that you’ve taught me
Speaker 2 (35:52):
And some people love it and that’s great.
Speaker 3 (35:55):
And if it works for you, fantastic. I wanted to focus more on the positive in moving forward and really kinda doing that. And she’s like, oh, you’re gonna drink again. And I was like, we’ll see.
Speaker 2 (36:10):
So that’s the thing, it’s like, come on. Yeah. Well you’re just an inspiration to me. I mean, I love it. I, I’m so honored that you came on and shared your story. I think it’s so relatable. I definitely relate to it.
Speaker 3 (36:26):
Speaker 2 (36:27):
You. I think I probably got kicked out of a bar too. <laugh>.
Speaker 3 (36:32):
I know. And it may have been more than one, but that’s the one that I burned earned the little time of sobriety. But I think that it’s really amazing what you’re doing and I think that people just need to see that it’s like, we can do this. And it’s actually such a better life. It’s
Speaker 2 (36:51):
So much better. It really in the long run, once you get those tools and once you figure out how to deal with all the shit, cuz shit comes up a hundred percent. Once you figure out how to deal with that stuff. I just don’t, nothing gets worse in sobriety.
Speaker 3 (37:09):
And honestly, you learn so much and you get to where you’re, I was never good at small talk, which is I think why drinking was appealing, because I couldn’t chat you up if we were drinking. But I had a therapist tell me one time, and at the time I was kind of annoyed, but he’s not wrong. He was like, Kate, you’re really intense. He’s like, you’re not every you that’s dig you. And yes, if we’re at a party and I just met you, I can’t do that. So it’s like, let’s pour little alcohol on it and that helps.
Speaker 2 (37:48):
And then get deep. Right, right, right. Well we dig deep here. And so we did. We did. And we do. Yeah. Thank you so much, much for sharing this. I think it’s so relatable. It’s so relatable. Oh good. And I think your story’s really important, so thank you. Thank you for coming on.
Speaker 3 (38:06):
Speaker 2 (38:13):
Thank you so much for listening to this episode of The Sober Mom Life. If you loved it, please rate and review it wherever you listen. Five stars is amazing. Also, follow me on Instagram at the sober mom life. Okay, I’ll see you next week. I’m gonna go reheat my coffee. Bye.