Over the years my drinking gradually increased… I was always a party girl when I was younger, loved going out socialising, drinking and having fun. Life changed a bit when I got married and had a baby. I didn’t drink when I was pregnant but after my daughter was born I slowly slipped back to old habits. That desire for a glass of wine every now and then was still there. It was my reward at the end of the day, when cooking dinner, just to relax and have some time to myself. Being at home all day with a baby was great and I love being a mum, but I definitely felt the need for a drink/break/escape!!
So fast forward a few years.
My relationship had deteriorated and we eventually divorced. There was a lot going on then; my parents had split up, I was depressed, I was coping with everything by drinking to forget it all by the end of the day. Then over the years my daily drinking gradually increased to two glasses, or three, then a bottle. Everyone around me drinks, it seemed normal. That’s what people do right?! I was basically a functioning on autopilot every day, waking up feeling tired, hungover and grumpy. I have a demanding job as well, but somehow managed to juggle it all, single mum, work, a business, drinking and socialising.
My health was seriously deteriorating.
I’d put on weight, not really exercising. I also have Crohn’s disease, so my gut health wasn’t great and I had lots of joint pain. Drinking definitely didn’t do me any favours there. I was grumpy with the kids, my partner and I used to have stupid fights after drinking too much.
Something had to change.
Then last year I saw the OYNB add pop up in my newsfeed. I signed up for 28 days in May 2018 and thought right!! I can do this, I need to do this! It was a bit scary, but I had to do something. Alcohol was now controlling my life and I had to get some balance back.
My partner ended up doing the challenge too and you know what, it was great, I felt so much better! But at the end of the 28 days I slowly slipped back into drinking. It was a great introduction being AF but not quite enough for me to change my ways.
I guess it was the new year looming which triggered me to think about stopping drinking again, so I looked up OYNB again and this time signed up for the 90 days challenge. I thought I’ve done 28 days, so surely I can do 90. I’m pretty competitive and driven so when say I’m gonna do something, I do it.
All I can say is the 90 days was a game changer for me.
This time around I knew what I was getting into. The first few weeks were going to be a challenge, but passed that it keeps getting better. I also started to interact with the group more, reading all the stories. That really helped, as did reading the quit lit books and following the advice from the daily emails. I booked a 5km running challenge for the end of my 90 days and it gave me something else to focus on. I have also started the Coach to 5km running programme and found that really helpful too.
The benefits have been countless.
I look better, feel better, life is just better! My skin has cleared up, I’ve lost 4kg and 6cm off my waist, my sleep is better, no more anxiety on waking up and I have so much more energy! My Crohn’s is now under control and in remission!! I can cope with stressful situations better, my family life is great!
My relationship has improved as well, we don’t bicker about silly things any more and are much more mindful about everything. We spend more time with the kids and doing the little things in the evening now like going out and getting ice-cream after dinner. I truly believe that without the tools and resources from OYNB this journey would have been very difficult and I probably would have caved in.
My life has completely changed and I honestly have no desire to drink alcohol now. I’m going to continue my AF journey and see where life takes me!
Thanks so much OYNB… you saved me.