Almost 2 years: A life worth living

So here’s a thing.  I read back the posts I wrote last year, and it seems pretty obvious to me that I had something of a crappy year.  I got hit with thousands of dollars in fines, plus so much emotional stress that I ended up in therapy.  My mother (who only has me) was badly injured.  My marriage wobbled.  I started a new business, which meant a huge step outside my comfort zone, and not a small amount of anxiety.  When I posted here, I was always struggling, and you guys were so supportive, and thank you.

But here’s the thing.  I didn’t realise at the time that I was having a bad year.  Because in between the bad parts were the good parts, and the good parts are so much better these days.

2016 has not started off particularly well in the Things Going Right: Things Going Wrong ratio department either, honestly.  Expensive things keep breaking.  A promised shower of work has failed to fall, perhaps lurking in the dark clouds above instead.  I lost a friendship.AND YET, people. Things are still so much better.  It’s crazy.rain-clouds_60415.jpg

I can’t believe I ever thought that if I gave up drinking, I’d be bored.  Bored.  Who…how…how can anyone be BORED with so many things in the world to do?  I’m staid, and domestic, and tied to my home by small children, so I’m not saying that I’m going to hike the Andes any time soon (I’m not sure where the Andes are, if we’re being honest here).  But over the last twelve months I’ve taught myself to sew, and to knit.  I learned how to wield a drill and a hammer and I built a chicken coop and I got chickens.  I dug out a vegetable patch, and my tomatoes are hanging green and plump.

chickens

I have been running regularly for the past two months, finally, and I’m about to start joining group runs.  I spend my day looking forward to my evening, just as I used to when I drank.  But not because I can slump on the couch with a glass of wine: because maybe I’ll finish that cowl and watch a documentary, or it’s a running night and then I have that new book to start, or I can’t wait to sketch out a design for a new quilt I have in mind.  And I’m not getting to do enough of anything!  I want to run more often, I want a weekend with just my sewing machine and some podcasts for company, I wonder if I can justify going down to the chicken coop and sitting with my knitting while I watch the girls scratch around just one more time this afternoon…

run harder

And I don’t write much here because there is so MUCH life to be devoured out there, and I don’t keep up with you guys as often as I should either.

I’m under no illusion that this life sounds like the ideal life to everyone.  It’s domestic, and bounded, and probably dull.  But it feels rich.  It feels layered.  It feels cerebral and physical and tangible and simple and complex and fresh.

And it is without question, a life I wouldn’t have if I had a life with alcohol.

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12 thoughts on “Almost 2 years: A life worth living

  1. We need to create some slogan that encapsulates our experience Allie – ‘life can be shit but not as shit as a life filled with too much booze’ – how does that sound? 😉 Congrats on 2 years and keeping your head up throughout it all! xx

  2. Your post sums up what I was trying to explain to a friend the other day. That even though my life is in turmoil at the moment and there are more bad days than good, I am surprisingly (for me) not constantly in tears. Somehow I know deep down that things are going to be ok and that I am on the right path. Your life sounds idyllic to me. I have planned to get chickens and pigs for about 5 years now and hammered ONE solitary post into the ground as a start. Keep, keeping on.

  3. your life sounds beautiful.
    recognizing how great it really is is the gift…the clearheadedness, the honesty of sobriety.
    We can surely complain, life is always uneven, but we notice the good, enjoy it more and know, finally, that the bad will pass, instead of feeling like “it’s going to be this way forever”…
    wonderful post, hopeful and true.
    thanks for this!
    xo

  4. I really get it. This resonates.
    I heard someone call it the ‘miracle of the mundane’ once. In sobriety, how the little things (perceived as boring once) are vibrant and colorful.
    But your post is about more than that. There is sooo much life going on! I preferred to talk about living at parties when drinking. Now, like you, I’m really living! I don’t know if anything will give more joy than children. I’m a teacher for God’s sake. That’s the list role I saw myself in when I was drugging and trying to be cool and what not.
    This post is such an excellent way to reflect on my life.
    Thank you.
    Mark

  5. I know exactly what you mean about the whole being bored thing. HOW did we possibly think that? I have had to give myself a stern talking to about adopting *more* new hobbies when I barely find time to knit and write and play the piano. It’s amazing how much more full life is without alcohol. Hang in there with the other stuff. Life has a funny way of turning out exactly as it is supposed to. ❤

  6. Hi! Keep it up. Staying away from lcohol is probably one of the best thing you are doing in your life. As my husband used to tell me his worst days sober are a lot better than those best days of drinking! It’s worth it.

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