2000 days sober!!!!!!

2000 days without a drop of alcohol or anything mind altering!
Get honest with yourself and others! You can do it, question is, do you want it? Do you think you’re worthy of sobriety? I find that it came down to the fact that I didnt feel worthy of my families forgiveness and I didnt believe I was worth happines and happiness sure as hell didn’t come with sobriety. So I thought………….

I started out as a “normal social drinker”. I even went to college and started working. However, the progression slowly increased. I drank for any reason. The good, the bad, the ugly. I ended up drinking alone, lieing to everyone about how bad it was. Pretending to be sober sometimes. Called into work “sick”. I ended up drinking before work in the morning to stop the shakes. Inside I knew. I knew it was a problem. I knew I was an alcoholic. I didn’t want to drink anymore but I couldn’t stop. I physically depended upon it. I was so disappointed in myself. I felt like the worst mother in the world. I didnt want to drink but I was scared to live sober. That’s a terrifying place to be in.
I was faced with losing my kids, so that was my last day drinking. My sobriety date is July 24 2014.
I have learned how to FEEL again. The good, the bad and the ugly. It’s not always fun, but it’s better than messing up my entire life and those around me! I have found ME again. A better version!!!!

I have learned FORGIVENESS. Which is a true miracle in itself considering I spent 30 yrs resenting people. I have found PEACE. Even through the chaos of life. I dont have 1 single reason to drink. It will solve nothing. Because 1 drink is never enough. I know that now, I accept it, I admit it. I am no longer ashamed! My journey has made me who I am today. I wouldn’t have done this much work on myself if I wasnt a recovering alcoholic!!! I’m proud and I wish happiness and health for everyone. No matter what you’ve done, where you’ve been, or where you are now, you are worth happines!!!!!!!!!

Other moms drink wine…….

Not every day is amazing. Sometimes you’re human and you want to say FUCK IT to the world and go hide. But you dont. You keep your big girl panties on and take it hour by hour, sometimes minute by minute.

Some moms eat cookie dough or ice cream when they’re sad, some people have a cigarette. Some moms have wine (I preferred white….red….rose…hell anything if I’m honest here)

The thing is, that “a” before the word “drink” is not possible for someone like me. “A” drink assumes that person has one drink. However, one drink for an alcoholic is way too many.

What does that mean? If I have one single sip that physical allergy is activated and so is my mental obsession. It happens that quick. One sip turns into the entire glass, and that glass turns into the bottle. Eventually, that bottle becomes empty and then the obsession turns into panic to find more.

Cycle repeats.

So on days that I want to hide, ofcourse that thought of a quick fix enters my mind. However at 5 years sober, it leaves as fast as it came.

I have a choice today. To drink or to stay sober. I’m the type of alcoholic that to drink means to die. So I choose to stay sober.

I have other ways I have learned to calm down and balance my emotions. They just dont work as fast as a drink would. But with more sobriety I have learned patience and to trust the process. I have faith today and I know just because I have a bad day, doesn’t mean that i have a bad life.

I write (hence what you’re reading!) I work (yes I actually enjoy what I do) I look at pictures of my family from happier days, I pray, I clean (gotta love the angry cleaning), I talk and vent to a trusted female friend, I talk to my sponsor, I go to a meeting and listen for a message and I share if I’m asked.

I have been through way more pain, stress and sadness before so I can get through a bad day sober. And someone, somewhere is going through something way worse, and they’re staying sober. So I can do it too.

Today, I have no reason to drink. After one sip I’ll feel regretful and therefore that would turn into a second sip to try and cover up that regret, but it actually turns into self pity which ends up being depression.

Cycle repeats.

You understand?

Its insanity. Literally.

If anything, I’m grateful to be where I’m at today. I never would have done all the work on myself if I wasnt an alcoholic. I mean, who the hell grows up wishing to be an alcoholic and end up sober while looking at their own defects of character and learning to change their behaviors? Yeah because that sounds like a blast. NOT!

But today I’m grateful because I am a better me, because of the storm that I went through.

 

 

Self love vs self sabotage

I have obsessed over my weight for my entire 35 yrs of life. However, I’ve never been overweight. But to part of my brain, I have. It’s like being stuck between what’s real and what’s not and it gets so tangled that you don’t even know what is real.

When I was 5 years old in kindergarten I remember feeling fat sitting in circle time. At 10, I remember having the flu and I felt skinny after not eating for a few days and it made me happy. I do not think that I look like my pictures. Part of me really thinks the camera shrinks me and that I’m actually bigger in person.

Twisted thinking to say the least? I know.

Today, I can actually look in the mirror and be happy with the image 4.5 months post partum after my 3rd son.

How!? Nothing has ever helped. Ive gone to outpatient treatment, counselling, support groups, nothing worked. Its been weighing on my mind whether or not I share this part of my journey with the world. I wanted to, but I wanted to wait until I could actually say that I consider myself in recovery. And I’m happy to say I am. I have not participated in any bad habits that come with eating disorders since before I found out I was pregnant. And my son is 4.5 months old as I type this. I have not gone this long since I was 18 yrs old.

I’m at the point now where I actually know that if I start again I wont be able to stop. It’s no different than alcohol to me. One sip and its all over. My eating disorder is the exact same. Why has it taken me 17 yrs to figure it out ?

All I did different this time was pray. I asked god to help me be kinder to myself. I asked for his help. For some reason that’s the one thing I never tried. I feel like a bit of a moron but why didnt I try and pray before? It works for my sobriety, I turn my will over to my higher power on a daily basis. So I’ve basically been using my tools I’ve learned to stay sober, and applied them to my eating disorder. LIGHT BULB!

So while I was pregnant this last time, i was paranoid about weight gain but I had to be healthy for the growing baby inside me. So I prayed. One day after another I prayed and ate healthy. (Ofcourse I have treats, but 90% healthy.)

I reminded myself that my growing body was temporary and that it was worth it. I changed every negative thought into a positive one. Something else I’ve learned in my sobriety journey.

Post partum, the extra weight has dropped easily. I not only kept my baby healthy but I kept myself healthy, in body and mind.

Something so simple like praying and applying tools that I already use to stay sober, to help my eating disorder? Why must I complicate the shit out of the simplest things?

Trust me I still have days that I am unhappy with the image i see. My body is not perfect and neither is my mind. I can still pick my body apart. Inch my inch and I’d start at my nose. But the longer I remain healthy, the longer my brain is fed! And today my brain is healthy and I’m able to switch my thinking to love instead of sabotage.

I think God wanted me to get sober first in order to deal with this issue.

It may have taken me 17 yrs but it’s ok to be a slow learner …. ♡

My reflection

From the time I was 5 years old I felt fat. I remember in kindergarten, not wanting to sit in circle time on my knees because I thought my legs were too big.

Not normal.

I wasn’t even a big child either. But somehow the thought of being perfect was embedded into my brain. From birth? From the verbal abuse I was enduring? I’ve done enough counseling to understand it has to do with coping and control.

I’ve been obsessed with my body my entire life. I’ve cried, I’ve screamed, and nothing ive ever tried to do has ever helped me. To the outside world, if someone like me expresses these feelings, than I am vain and seeking attention. Judge me, I dont care because I’ve thought worse about myself than you. It’s a real disorder and a real sickness. It’s not about attention. It’s something so deep that’s so incredibly hard to understand or explain.

People think just because someone is thin, that they’re happy. If someone is large, they’re lazy. Both are untrue. No one can win, so why try?

I stare at other women who are all sizes and admire their confidence. Women are beautiful. And at times I do feel beautiful! Its been a 30 year journey to begin to love what i see in the mirror. It’s taken years of practice telling myself that what I think of my body is not really real. I see a big woman. But I know that’s not really true. I’ve been afraid of going public about this out of fear of judgement. I’m public about being an alcoholic so why not about this? Maybe it will hold me accountable to keep trying to heal.

The only thing I can say is that I’ve started praying about it. It’s the only thing I hadn’t done all these years to try and overcome it. I thought, prayer has helped my sobriety so why haven’t I prayed about this? So simple its stupid lol.

Perhaps its working? because nearly 4 months after having my 3rd son, I can look in the mirror and actually say that I’m happy with how I look for just having a baby. For someone like me, that’s huge! Sure, there are days where I count the dimples in my thighs, and I’m 2 inches bigger all around than I was a year ago. But, if I shut the negative talk down long enough, I start to see the real me staring back.

Why do we self hate? Is it easier and safer than having others hate us? Is it learned behaviour from abuse? These all might be true. But all I can do is talk myself down, out of the negative thoughts. If I can slowly change how I think, maybe the reflection will be clearer.

 

A short poem I wrote:

“I dont see what other see

When I look in the mirror,

I don’t see me.

I see a woman who’s larger in size

But my clothes say different,

So my brain is telling lies.

I was 5 years old when I felt this way

Not a moment went by,

That I felt okay.

I’m 35 now, so 30 yrs too long

But I realize it now,

That my minds been wrong.

I can pick myself apart

From my nose to my thighs,

And no one hears my silent cries.

I’ve been my own worst enemy

But I’m learning to love,

The person inside and the reflection that’s me.”

– Amanda Loewen

 

 

Day 1 vs Day 1826

My life; Day 1 July 24 2014

I was hung over
I felt empty like I had no soul
No emotion, just numb
Scared, full of fear
I felt like the worst mother in the world
I felt like the worst daughter in the world
I felt like the worst sister in the world
I was scared I was going to lose my job (I did 3 months later!)
I didnt know who I was anymore
I didnt believe I would ever be happy
I didnt want to drink, but I was scared to live sober.

My life; Day 1826, 5 yrs sober, July 24 2019

I’m sober from ALL mind altering substances
I am fulfilled and blessed with a big gratitude list
I live in faith, not fear
I am now a mother of 3, and I am a great mother!
I’m a great daughter and very close to my parents
My sister and I are best friends!
I love who I am today! I actually like me!
I found happiness within myself, it existed all along, but I was looking for it in the wrong places. I even found love and a husband! A business that I’m successful at! A LIFE!
I still don’t want to drink, but I’m happily living life sober.

Remember:
Honesty will heal, denial will drink.
Happiness does exist.

Body dismorhphia & how pregnancy is helping me

I have 2 boys who are so excited and a husband who thought he wouldn’t have his own after losing his first….and all I can think about is my weight gain ?

Real talk.

I don’t normally discuss this on social media but the more open I’ve been over the years about my alcoholism the more women I’ve been able to help, so maybe this will help too.

Age 5 is when I remember my first thoughts about feeling fat. (And I wasn’t) I’ve spent nearly 35 yrs (my bday is soon) obsessing over my size. After high school I got real skinny. Then I got pregnant with the twins and although my stomach wasn’t as big as one with twins would get, I had a ton of added weight from eating like shit, and water weight. I felt disgusting after they were born. Hated my body. I had no tools to cope except for the wine opener.

I’ve been different weights through the years and no, I’ve never been technically overweight. However I can tell you honestly that the feelings are the same. I know beautiful big women and the way they feel is the same. Size doesn’t matter. And guess what…..women who are too skinny get hate too. We can’t win.

Yes I think i was a bit too thin last summer. But I didn’t see it. My eyes don’t see what you see.

My first thought getting pregnant this time? JOY. My second thought….. WEIGHT GAIN. I spent my entire first trimester sleeping pretty much and hormones going crazy, i got depressed and felt gross. I began to feel selfish. Here I am creating and growing a life inside me. I have 2 boys who are so excited and a husband who thought he wouldn’t have his own after losing his first….and all I can think about is my weight gain ?

Realizing this is a sickness just like my alcoholism, and now knowing the tools I’ve learned over 4.5 yrs of sobriety, I turned to prayer and slowly started talking about it so it’s not a secret anymore. Secrets keep us sick.

It’s working! I now see myself as a cute and beautiful pregnant woman who has a nice little belly and a healthy baby boy growing that I am already nurturing!!!! I’ve been eating well this time too.

Women are amazing and we really need to be kinder to ourselves. I’m healthy, I’m happy (most days lol) and so I’ve gained weight….im supposed to for Jacob. It’s in God’s plan that Jacob is coming.

Prayer and talking about it is helping. I wish I had these tools 12 yrs ago. I’m already excited about staying healthy after he’s born.

God is always working in your life. But it’s up to you to be open to what he is saying to you!

What he’s telling me now? AMANDA you have the tools to beat this. You know how to overcome negative thoughts in your head with healthy tools. You’ve come so far to go back. You wanted another gift of life and Jacob needed you. So here he is. A second chance to stay healthy for not only yourself but your children.

Talk about it, pray, positive self talk over and over, and remember, secrets will keep you sick.

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No more apologies

For years people told me:
You’re too sensitive
Get over it
Why are you crying
Why are you letting it affect you
You’re crazy
Why do you care
You have issues
You need help
You have alterier motives

You know what? I’ll be 35 soon and this is what I’ve come to realize:
It’s okay to be sensitive.
It’s okay to spend time alone because the weight of others energies are weighing heavy in your heart.
It’s okay to put up boundaries to protect yourself.
It’s ok if some people think you trying to help others has a selfish reason behind it because you know in your heart it’s not true.
It’s ok to work on yourself first.
It’s ok to weed negative people out of your life, and not feel bad for it.
It’s ok to be who you are and make no apologies for it.
What some may think are your weaknesses, does not mean they really are.
It’s ok. It’s ok. It’s ok.

For all the years of people who scolded me and put me down for being sensitive…..ITS BECOME MY POWER. MY STRENGTH. I help others by emotionally being there for them. I’m a friend, I’m a sister, I’m a mother, I’m a wife, I’m a sponser to women, and I’m proud to be sensitive and an empath.

It all makes sense now!

DO NOT APOLOGIZE FOR WHO YOU ARE