I’m a recovering alcoholic.
While active in my addiction, I wasn’t a very good mom. Truth be told, I wasn’t a very good person.
There was a time I never thought I could make it 24 hours sober, however on 11/24 I will celebrate five years without a substance. A year or so ago, my oldest daughter told me she doesn’t remember any of the stuff I did, but does remember wondering why she wasn’t enough.
“Enough to keep me sober?” I asked. I had dreaded that talk. What would I say? How would I explain that it was me? It will always about me.
I carried around the guilt for so long.
The person I was — the things I did once I picked up that first drink. I was Jekyll and Hyde as a mom. The hardest part about getting sober has been letting go of the hate I felt about myself as a mother. I missed so much; opportunities I’ll never get back — memories I’ll never make with them.
The good thing about life is, it keeps going. I can’t erase the things I did, or the feelings my children felt, but I can be there for all of them now. I am there for homework assignments, practices and games, doctors appointments, competitions, and bedtime stories. The last five years, I’ve wiped tears, fought off boogeymen and bad dreams, given hugs in happy times and sadness, hosted slumber parties, and laughed so hard with them I have peed my pants.
Sobriety has given me this chance; the chance to rebuild my life, and to be the mom I am today. It has given me the opportunity to be me again. I am far from perfect. I still forget appointment times and run late. I still yell and cry when I shouldn’t. I still suck at math and struggle with homework help, but I can be there.
I can be here.
I can show my girls that they can count on me. Even when they don’t want me around, they know I’m available.
Sobriety changed me.