Category Archives: Women and alcohol

She Recovers Day 3 – and when I ugly-cried in front of 500 women

Marianne Williamson and me at She Recovers

Marianne Williamson and me at She Recovers


We have all been to a meeting, an event, to see an acclaimed speaker, and felt that they spoke only to you. That their words were already written on our souls, they just had to call them forth.
That’s what happened to me when I heard Marianne Williamson speak at She Recovers.

This wasn’t why I came. I came because I had the incredible honor of being invited onto the sober blogger team. I came to serve. I had no idea there was so much here that I needed. But my soul knew.

Marianne is the spiritual teacher I had been waiting for, for a long time. A Course in Miracles is my spiritual truth. This is the second time I had heard her and she delivers such a powerful and important message. I love how politically engaged she is. The personal is political, Marianne made that very clear. What we are doing to our planet, how women and children’s voices are silenced. She spoke to me today.

As I wrote yesterday, the theme of this whole event has been about ‘pain.’ Her quote ‘Let me not squander the hour of my pain’ pierced my soul.
I am in pain, but the enormity of it frightened me so much I have been holding it at bay. She Recovers showed me I could no longer do that.
I am a warrior. I have felt deep dark emotional pain before and I can get through anything. Anything. You can throw anything at me and I will get through it. I have done before. But just don’t throw it at my child, ok? Because that is a level of pain I am not prepared for. But it is here and it is mine. And. I. Will. Not. Squander. It.

Because Marianne spoke so passionately about the planet and the political situation we are currently in I wanted to ask her if she was going to run for Congress again. Like many of us, I have felt despair at our current political situation and I want a leader I can believe in.
I wasn’t expecting to full on ugly cry in front of y’all. I wasn’t expecting 500 women to surround me with unconditional love. I wasn’t expecting Marianne Williamson to lead the room in prayer for Luke’s healing from lead poisoning*.
I just wasn’t expecting that.
But my soul thanks you, for grace you extended to me.

This weekend has given me so much to think about. It has deepened my connections with you all. Every time I see you, I love you more. We are all in these incredible process’s, but what matters is we are all in it together.

I am still digesting what was said and how I feel. I know there is so much growth that will come from this. But for right now, I’m treasuring that Marianne Williamson came and said exactly what I needed to hear.

My son Luke. He likes mud.

My son Luke. He likes mud.

*If you are interested in learning more about lead poisoning in young children then please check out my friend Tamara Rubin’s website. Tamara is a mom whose children were lead poisoned by the house they were living in. She has since become an ‘unexpected lead expert’ and activist. She has worked tirelessly to help families and raise awareness of the situation and has been a great support to me. Her movie ‘Mislead’ is coming out soon and you can watch the trailer below.


She also has a ‘Go Fund Me’ campaign where she is raising money to buy an XRF machine (the best way to test any object for lead) so she can help more families. If you are able to support her in any way I would be very grateful.

#SheRecoversNYC – Day 2

When amazing women get together amazing things happen. Day 2 of She Recovers was just as amazing the first. Elena Brower did an amazing spoken word piece on her recovery and it was word perfect.
Then Nikki Myers spoke the truth on codependency. She called it the ‘disease of the lost self’. And how our need for outside approval keeps us in the darkness. There seems to be a theme emerging to the She Recovers event and it’s ‘welcome the pain.’ Which sounds crazy, but it started with Glennon last night. When she discussed not wanting to ‘waste the pain’ from the breakdown of her marriage, that instead, she wanted mine it. Because within the pain the riches lie.
‘Ain’t that the truth sister.

Elizabeth Vargas reading from her book

Elizabeth Vargas reading from her book


Elizabeth Vargas talked about anxiety and panic attacks which is something I identify with very closely. I think a lot of women suffer with anxiety and panic disorders and we mostly suffer alone. Isolated and terrified of feelings we have no control over and that can cripple us in seconds. It’s just always inspiring to see someone who you perceive to be successful and beautiful to admit that they suffered from crippling fear too. Because if they can say it, you can say it too.

I also attend Jennifer Matesa’s excellent workshop called ‘Desire un-numbed, or, as everyone else called it ‘sex and recovery.’ Jennifer gave an excellent presentation based on the findings from her book, where she identified a lot of common themes for women in recovery when they think about sex. They are scared they can’t get past their inhibitions, of unrealistic expectations, they have body hatred, sexual anorexia. Women around the room identified with each other and the most amazing and frank discussion on sex occurred. Cleary there is a need here for women to get together and talk openly and frankly about these issues and I look forward to see where Jennifer is going to go with this.

After dinner (shout out to Jean from Unpickled who won the first She Recovers ‘Hope’ award), we were treated to the wisdom of Gabby Bernstien. I will be honest and tell you I’m not a Gabby fan. I love ‘A Course in Miracles’ but Gabby has never resonated with me. I was keen to see her in person to see if that changed. I loved what she had to say and I think I got a couple of breakthroughs on areas I need to work on. There’s too much going on in my head right now to process it, but she also talked about not running from the pain but surrendering to it and letting God in.
I think I heard exactly what I needed to hear.

Gabby Bernstein

Gabby Bernstein


Lastly. Whilst I was filming one of the sober blogger live stream events, the gentleman (I didn’t get his name) who was taking care of the sound and recordings was asked how it was for him being at an all women event. He replied, ‘that he felt honored and humbled to be let into such an honest and revealing space, that he had learnt so much he never knew or understood about women and he was so glad he got to be here’.

Yes. Me too.

#SheRecoversNYC – Day 1

I have no words.

Sober blogger meet and great

Sober blogger meet and great


She Recovers was so much more than I expected. The minute I walked through the door I connected with amazing sober women. Sober Julie and I had a magical moment, then Kelly Fitzgerald the Sober Señorita arrived and I adore her. And was sat next to Jean from Unpickled and The Bubble Hour and she is the loveliest women you could ever meet. And so it went on. This coming together of amazing women in recovery.
The desire to be better, to be connected, as Dawn from She Recovers says ‘We are stronger together.’

Yes we are.

Just when I thought it couldn’t get any better Glennon Doyle Melton just blew us all out of the water with her stories and her sass. She made us laugh and she made us cry but most of all she was real. Real stories of what it’s like to be a warrior in recovery. She rocked it.

My arm involuntarily shot up to ask a question at the end. That wasn’t my intention. But I wanted to ask another mother in recovery what it was like to face fear around your child. And the love and support just poured out.

The weekend has only just begun…….

Thank you everyone.

Me and The Sober Señorita

Me and The Sober Señorita

Me (left) Jean from Unpickled (far right)

Me (left) Jean from Unpickled (far right)

She Recovers NYC – lets meet up

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We are just days away from the She Recovers event in NYC. I will be taking part in the ‘meet the bloggers’ event on Friday night at 5pm. The sober blogging team will be around all weekend and we love to hang out, so please be sure to come and say hi.
I will be giving 5 copies of my best-selling book ‘Why you drink and How to stop’ away to the first 5 readers who come up and introduce themselves.
I will also be celebrating 17 years of recovery with the very lovely Julie Maida from ‘Sober Mommies’. We are sober twins, sharing the exact same sober birthday. I will be blogging, Facebooking, Tweeting and Instagraming live all weekend.
If you can’t come then check out social media and become part of the She Recovers global group.
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Your Ultimate Recovery Giveaway!!!!!!!!!!!

Have you heard of the amazing She Recovers conference that is happening in NYC on May 5-9th?!
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This one of kind experience will feature keynote speeches from the top women in the industry, like Gabrielle Bernstein and Marianne Williamson! Plus, a special guest yoga class with Elena Brower!

Tickets are SOLD OUT but my blog readers have a chance to WIN a front row ticket to the Live Stream event! (That means you can watch in your PJs!)

PLUS,

You’ll also be entered to win a one of kind box filled with awesome gifts from the top bloggers that will be attending the show (so that you’ll feel just like you are in NYC with us)

Here are some of the amazing things you can win!

Here are some of the amazing things you can win!


AND one Ekka Recovery box!

Click HERE to be entered to WIN!

Everyone needs a sister like Glennon


There are a ton of mommy-bloggers out there. Motherhood with all its joys and challenges is being documented by an army of fabulous, smart, kick ass women. And one of the most searingly honest, funniest and sassiest is Glennon Doyle Melton, a sober mommy-blogger. She coined the term ‘Momastry’ and set about building a community of imperfect and fabulous mothers who were all facing their own struggles.
She wrote a book ‘Carry on, warrior’ that detailed her own struggles and triumphs. I like Glennon for many reasons, she is very open about her recovery from addiction and eating disorders but the reason I love her is her attitude towards sisterhood. She believes it’s essential for women to be part of a sisterhood. And I agree with her.

Sisterhood is everything. It was a huge part of what was missing in my life when I was drinking. Sobriety has given me an amazing sisterhood.

In her new book ‘Love Warrior’ she details how just when she thought she had her life figured out her marriage was rocked by her husband’s infidelity. Glennon presents life as it is, imperfect, messy and real. And we need all of that. It’s exhausting pretending everything is perfect, because none of us are.
Glennon will be giving one of the keynotes as *SheRecovers next month. I am so excited to hear her. If you haven’t got tickets there are still digital tickets available here.

If you are going, be sure to let me know so we can say hi.

*In addition to the above you will also have access to:
– TWO yoga sessions with Taryn Strong and Elena Brower
– listen to a talk by She Recovers founder Dawn Nickel
– go behind the scenes with the Sober blogging team
– Spoken word performance by Elena Brower
– Musical performance by Elizabeth Edwards
– Speakers including Nikki Myers from Y12SR

And there’s more! You will have access to the content for 60 days after the event, the keynote speakers (Excluding Glennon Doyle Melton and Gabby Bernstein) will ONLY be available via the LIVESTREAM.

and finally…..you can take part in the She Recovers community online, chat with other She Recovers attendees and ask questions of the panelists and speakers.

All this for just $79 (if purchased by April 15th, $89 after). You can buy tickets for this exclusive event here: BUY MY TICKETS NOW!!!!

Do you want to go to She Recovers in NYC?

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Well now you can!
Tickets are sold out and there is a huge waiting list for cancellations, HOWEVER the event is going to be live streamed.
So you can attend She Recovers from anywhere in the world!
You will be able to see and hear keynote speakers Marianne Williamson, Glennon Doyle Melton, Gabrielle Bernstein and Elizabeth Vargas.

In addition to the above you will also have access to:
– TWO yoga sessions with Taryn Strong and Elena Brower
– listen to a talk by She Recovers founder Dawn Nickel
– go behind the scenes with the Sober blogging team
– Spoken word performance by Elena Brower
– Musical performance by Elizabeth Edwards
– Speakers including Nikki Myers from Y12SR

And there’s more! You will have access to the content for 60 days after the event, the keynote speakers (Excluding Glennon Doyle Melton and Gabby Bernstein) will ONLY be available via the LIVESTREAM.

and finally…..you can take part in the She Recovers community online, chat with other She Recovers attendees and ask questions of the panelists and speakers.

All this for just $79 (if purchased by the end of March, $89 after). You can buy tickets for this exclusive event here: BUY MY TICKETS NOW!!!!

Marianne Williamson on spirituality


Sometimes I have a post in mind and then I realize that someone has said everything so much better than I ever could. Marianne Williamson is one of the greatest teachers of applied spirituality that I know. She describes herself as a ‘spiritual activists’. Don’t you love that?
I’ve seen Marianne speak in person at one of her weekly seminars in New York City. She is the real deal. Which is why I’m super excited to see her again at She Recovers* in NYC in May.
I particularly like this interview as she discusses the ‘addictive global-mind.’ How we have been trained since birth to consume, to buy objects as the ultimate fulfillment to happiness and how so many of us find that lacking.

” -that we are addicted to certain things because we’ve been taught that something outside us is the source of our happiness. Consumerism in that sense is a form of idolatry. That cruise…that object…that whatever…will make you happy. And then, of course, if it doesn’t work out, then here’s a pharmaceutical to lift your spirits about it. When, in fact, the source of our happiness has very little to do with what we get and has everything to do with what we give. Simply knowing that, strikes at the core of our addiction to immoderate accumulation”.

She has many great insights into recovery including why relationships are so essential to recovery and spiritual growth. You can read the rest of the interview here.
SheRecovers in NYC Member Sober Blogger Team
*She Recovers has sold out, BUT there is a wait list if you still want to try and come.

Caitlin Moran blocked me on Twitter and I’m kinda devastated.

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It’s true. She blocked me.

She was one of my ‘go to’ people when anything interesting happened, because she always writes so succinctly and is piercingly honest. Initially, I thought she was taking a Twitter break as I couldn’t see her tweets on Tweetdeck. Then to my horror, I realized she had actually blocked me. She had actually taken a nano-second out of her day to press the button that said ‘block user’.

I’m devastated that she imagines me to be some kind of troll who is sending her abusive messages (which as a kick ass feminist I imagine she gets a lot off). I’m heart broken that she thinks I’m one of them. And I’d like to apologize to her, as the last thing I wanted to do was cause offense.
It’s the first time social media has managed to dent my self-esteem. I assume it’s because she either read this, or saw one of my tweets, that I tweeted at her, imploring her to read this. I’m not a great writer and Moran does this for a living, but I tried really hard to balance how much I admired and respected her, with an attempt to initiate a conversation about how much binge drinking is normalized, and laughed about in our culture. I was suggesting she maybe mentioned this a bit too much, and could perhaps have a think about the impact of what she was saying. Obviously I came off as smug, patronizing and judgmental, and trust me, my 16 year old self is looking on in horror. How did I become this kind of grown up?

Because that isn’t what I set out to do. In truth, it is not binge drinking that I actually have a problem with. Adults need to make their own decisions, and many of us choose to do stuff that we know is bad for us, regardless. My issue has always been the rhetoric around binge drinking. The normalization of abnormal drinking. The jokey, jokey, references to hangovers and laughing about drinking quantities of alcohol that would kill a normal person.

It’s the subtext that says ‘alcohol is the solution to whatever problem you have.’

Stressed? I’ve got a bottle of gin here – that’ll sought it.
Bored housewife? Then it must be wine-o-clock, ‘wink, wink.’
Had a tough day? Nothing like a drink or two or three to sort that right out.
This is the language I’d like to challenge and I was hoping Ms. Moran would hear me on that.
But clearly I failed.

And I’m still not clear on how to address this. I do not want to be the fun police, I do not want to judge other people’s drinking, it’s really none of my business. I do not want to be a party pooper, or abstinence promoter (don’t believe in it).
What I do want to do is challenge how it’s represented in my culture. Because I believe our cultural representations of alcohol use are grossly incorrect, dangerous and actually camouflage’s our massive denial about the impact alcohol has. And it’s this collective denial that’s stopping people getting help.
We still culturally represent alcohol abuse as a bit of harmless fun. And it’s not harmless. It causes massive harm, to many people.
I’m not denying that drinking can be fun and can help with some unforgettable moments with friends. I’m also fully supportive of appropriate alcohol use. And even though I do have a problem with alcohol, not all my nights drinking were terrible, some were awesome.

If you have any suggestions how we can begin to change the conversation around drinking in a non-smug, non judgmental, non-twitter-blocking-by-celebrities-we-really-admire method. I would be very grateful to hear it. And if you happen to know Caitlin Moran, please tell her I’m sorry.

SHE RECOVERS – NYC

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I’m really excited to tell you about the She Recovers conference taking place in NYC on May 5-7.
I’m really honored to be taking part in this event as one of the official sober blogger team members. There will be a reception and meet on greet on the Friday night so if you are able to attend I will get to meet you in person.
The line up is killer:
*drumroll*
Gabrielle Bernstein
Elizabeth Vargas
Glennon Doyle Melton
and…..
Marianne Williamson

I know!!!!!!!!! Awesome, right!!!!!!

Tickets are selling out fast there are less than 80 left if you are interested you can purchase them here.

She Recovers is a community women who believe we are all in recovery for something and that we are stronger, together.

Dawn, me and Taryn

Dawn, me and Taryn


I met the co-founders Dawn Nickel and her daughter Taryn Strong for dinner last year, when they were out in New York planning the event. They are an awesome kick ass team and I love what they are doing for the recovering community. Dawn started She Recovers because she knew how important self care is to recovery.
She’s right. Self care is vital to recovery.
If you are free and you are able, we would love to see you at the event and meet you in person.