Lucy, with 65 days of sobriety, shares her story.
Do I need to avoid social situations where alcohol will be present?
The answer is yes, then no, then yes. Sorry if that’s confusing. I explain better in the episode.
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[8:40] Paul introduces Lucy
Lucy, with 65 days of sobriety, lives in London England. She is a freelance makeup artist, which she loves doing. She is single, likes walking, hiking, cooking, and drawing.
[11:30] Give us a little background about your drinking.
Lucy had her first experience with alcohol at age 12. Her drinking kicked into full swing after she was 18, when she began working in bar and nightclubs. She feels that it was a very quick descent into binge drinking and blackouts. By the time she was 21 she found herself drinking alone more and more. She lost every bar job she had because she would not show up for work because she was hungover.
[17:34] Lucy’s first venture into sobriety.
At age 26, after moving to London to be a full-time makeup artist, Lucy realized that she might lose the career she loved if she continued to drink. She tried AA, but it just didn’t resonate with her. Within a year, after white knuckeling sobriety, she went back to drinking.
[20:01] Her rock bottom.
Lucy had a suicide attempt at age 30, which she feels was a cry for help. She regrets what she put her family through at that time.
She then had a second try at sobriety, and found that she had a lot of anger and resentment toward drinkers.
[23:40] Since then, Lucy has realized that each relapse has taught her something. She cannot moderate her drinking at all.
[27:50} Did you attempt to moderate your drinking?
Never doing shots.
Having three blood alcohol calculators on her phone.
Avoiding going out as much as possible.
[44:28] What is your plan in sobriety moving forward?
Not drinking, staying connected, putting sobriety first.
[45:04] Rapid fire round.
That night in the hospital after her suicide attempt.
My 10th blackout in a row, and a four-day hangover.
Find your tribe.
Believe in yourself, you’re stronger than you know. There’s a way out for everyone.
[46:45] You might be an alcoholic if . . .
You factor in an extra 100 pounds ($150 US) for every time you go out drinking
Because you never know in what part of the city you’ll wake up, and you might
need to call a cab.
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Jeff, with over 2 years since his last drink, shares his story…
That could never happen…
Analysis of the famed James Bond movies reveals that James Bond is a full-blown functioning alcoholic living on borrowed time.
“There is strong and consistent evidence that James Bond has a chronic alcohol consumption problem at the severe end of the spectrum… His workplace, MI6, needs to become a more responsible employer and refer him to support services and change their corporate drinking culture.”
The amount of alcohol that James Bond is consuming in the films is enough to leave someone far too disabled to engage in any kind of crime fighting.
[7:07] Paul Introduces Jeff.
Jeff has been sober just over two years. He’s 43 years old and lives near Denver, Colorado. He is married with one adult son. He and his wife enjoy Netflix, boating, and writing. He is the same guest as a previous guest, episode 104. He is a genetic researcher. He is extremely busy, with three jobs. He found that most people just drink in their downtime. He went from habitual drinking around age 34 to a downward spiral once his wife left him. There was a DUI, and a crash. It enabled him to reboot.
[12:20] What happened during that five year period where you drank normally, but the obsession was still there?
He was still micromanaging the quantities of alcohol that were available to him. He was constantly making sure that consuming alcohol was going to be part of the plan and available just in case. Even though he found like he had a new life, he included alcohol in his activities.
[14:00] Did you try to moderate your drinking with rules?
Definitely. Switching from hard alcohol to beer, or only on the weekends. They seemed to break all the time. Other parts of his life were great at the time. His step daughter had a stroke, but when those three days were up he craved alcohol. He realized he was using alcohol to take a break from difficult emotions and he figured out that he needed to try and find a better way. He realized that he wanted someone else to step in and help him control his drinking. He emptied a bottle and kept it around as a reminder of his efforts to get sober. He discussed it with his wife, and they had a great conversation. He’s grateful that she met him in the middle of his struggle. She knew who he was and what he was dealing with. She agreed to get sober with him to help him along, even though she didn’t have a problem.
[22:50] How important is it to have your significant other or spouse on board with your decision to get sober?
Incredibly important. There were times when he wanted to crack, but she was there to support him. They agreed to find alternative ways to get through the holidays, etc. It is better, to be honest than to be hiding it.
[24:21] What is it like for you in the different stages of sobriety?
In the first 90 days, everything is new. He binge listened to podcasts to help him rewire his thoughts. He spent the first six months just learning. In the first year, you are testing whether or not you can do things without drinking. He was surprised at how much his brain came back online. He found himself to be highly creative. Sobriety has been a surprise. The second year found him being a lot more available in his business. He found surprising success in his business. One never stops growing. He began to look at his priorities. He had to decide which areas of his life needed growth. The second year is way more empowering. You start hitting your stride and liking yourself more as a person.
[33:06] What’s the most challenging thing you’ve encountered in sobriety?
The lake trip was the most challenging. He was isolated on a boat, and everyone was drunk. He would climb up to get cell reception and check in with his internet support group. He felt incredible when he made it through without drinking.
[35:09] What’s on your bucket list in sobriety?
He’s working on a book that involves sobriety. He wants to learn how to schedule unproductive time. He feels too busy. He feels like he’s still learning. He isn’t involved with formal recovery groups. He’s still trying to explore the depths of who he is.
[39:28] What are your thoughts on relapse?
It’s all an experiment. How would it feel to spend a long time away from alcohol? The results have been that sobriety is the way for him. He feels better, more empowered.
[42:00] Rapid Fire Round
Resources mentioned in this episode:
Connect with Cafe RE- Use the promo code OPPORTUNITY for your first month free
Sober Selfies! - Send your Sober Selfie and your Success Story to firstname.lastname@example.org
“We took the elevator down; we gotta take the stairs back up, we can do this!”