Recovery totally rocks this week for the original ‘Sober Girl’ Carrie Armstrong. I met Carrie on Twitter and then began following her HuffPost UK blog.
I just love what this girl has to say. She has a fearless kick-ass attitude and is not scared of speaking her truth. She is just one of these people who strives to live authentically.
Everyone who gets sober feels like they have a second chance at life, well it’s doubly true with Carrie. Shortly after getting sober she was struck down by a virus that kept her housebound and in a wheelchair.
Instead of drowning in self pity she fought back and is now not only out of her wheelchair she works as a TV presenter for Gaff Tv.
Carrie and I are collaborating on the Facebook page ‘How to be a Sober Girl.‘ Our mission is to give just a little balance to the overwhelming coverage drinking gets. We feel sobriety gets a bad rap and is often painted as dull and boring. As we both know its not the case we wanted to try and ‘rebrand’ sobriety as the positive, fun, exciting, fulfilling, awesome experience we know it to be. If you are a Sober Girl and would like to join this mission, please click here.
1) Describe your ‘rock bottom.’
I don’t believe in Rock Bottom as a concept. To me Rock Bottom is Actual Death not Near Death. I drank for 10 years. I was unhappy in every sense of the word. Then I stopped drinking. It’s why I don’t know my own Sobriety Date. It was such an anti-climax. So simple and uneventful I assumed it wouldn’t last so I didn’t bother taking note of it…
2) What was your ‘moment of truth’ or ‘clarity’ that prompted you to get sober/clean?’
I didn’t have one. No lightning bolt. No vision. No epiphany. I just knew that something was wrong. That maybe I did not have to live like this. That I might deserve better. So I stopped drinking. And I kept doing it. It’s how we all get sober and stay sober. We just use different words to describe it.
3) What were your first 30 days of recovery like?
The first 10 months were exactly the same. I had this conversation with myself on a constant loop:
Me: Don’t drink this minute hour/afternoon/day.
Brain: Why not?
Me: I don’t know. Just don’t.
You can’t argue with that. It worked like nothing else ever had done. Not admitting powerlessness. Simply acting without justifying. I kept a journal for 300 days. And after 300 days of not drinking I was ready to admit I had a problem.
4) What are the best things that have happened to you since you got clean/sober?
My life is lovely now. I can’t believe how lovely it is actually. That I do deserve nice things. That I have lovely possessions. That I care about how I look. That I actually have wider interests than getting pissed or just surviving til it’s time to start drinking again. That I get to be one of those girls I always envied. Who have nice, ordered peaceful lives. I don’t have the constant lingering sickly smell of booze accompanying me everywhere I go. No more constant lies. Where I’ve been. What I’ve done. Am I sober. I live in a lovely place. I have wonderful people around me. I actually eat and sleep. And I like myself-I still can’t believe that one actually.
5) If you could go back in time to you when you were drinking/using what would you tell yourself?
I do that all the time! Sometimes I go back to 15 year old me and say “Don’t drink. Don’t do it. Not even once. You will change the course of your entire life”
Or 21 year old me “You could stop now, it could still be ok. Get up. Get out from this awful place and this awful man and get help. Nobody has to live like this. Even you deserve better.”
Sometimes I just go back and I hold my own hand and I tell myself not to worry. Yes it does get bad. Very, very bad. But then it gets better. Very, very better.
6) What have been the most useful things you have learnt about yourself since getting sober/clean?
I learned I have opinions on things. I care about people. People care about me. I deserve nice things. I’m worthy of love. I don’t have to hate myself. People are good and kind and brave. Life is beautiful.
7) What are your favorite recovery slogans?
“Don’t be someone else’s slogan because you are poetry.” Sandra Bullock 28 Days
8) And lastly, why does ‘recovery rock?’
Details. Small imperceptible details. Tiny ones. Baking a cake. Dancing in the rain. Telling someone you love them. Holding a friend’s baby. Having an actual conversation. Feeling safe. Feeling part of the world. Feeling hope. Just feeling. Being able to feel anything is worth getting sober. It is enough