Today I have some good news. 100 days ago I decided to stop drinking. Although, thankfully, there was no life ending or life ruining rock bottom, my life had been spiraling out of control and it was only a matter of time before there were serious, irreversible consequences. I waited until day 100 to come out and say anything publicly because my in person and social media friends would probably range from reacting with “What are you talking about?” to “Good – I was worried about you.” to “Yeah, I’ll believe it when I see it.”
My decision was made the day before my 37th birthday on November 29th, 2016. I woke up that morning after a Thanksgiving weekend bender and thought, “ Why am I throwing away my life?” If I continued drinking I would be mediocre in life at best and cause serious damage to myself and others at worse. It had to stop. That was it. I had had enough.
The thought of living life sober was very scary. Basically, when you have been numbing your feelings and quieting your thoughts without processing either you have to learn to live life again. There has been anxiety every “new” experience – new even though I had done them 100 times just never sober. The first concert, the first date, the first football game, the first holiday… but a few months in and after checking off some boxes, it was ok. And I know it’s always going to be ok to navigate life situations sober. And people who are just meeting you really don’t care if you’re drinking or not. They have their own issues to deal with. (I’m meaning that from the standpoint as worrying if people will think you are weird for not drinking, not what your friends who know you’re in recovery would think if you went off the wagon.) I was afraid I wouldn’t have fun but life has been so much more fun because of the freedom and peace of mind I have living life sober. And life isn’t perfect. The goal isn’t to not have problems the goal is to have better problems. I am so grateful for my better problems.
On day one, I met with one of my best friends, Joseph Mole, who said, “We need to give you purpose in life. We need to figure out a way to combine your passion for volunteering with your passion for fitness.”
I thought, “Hmm. I know someone who I think does that.”
Then I called my colleague and friend James who is the lead trainer at a gym in Utah that focuses on fitness as part of addiction recovery. I felt something that made it clear that it’s my calling to serve this population through fitness.
And here is my exciting news. This week, I filed for an LLC and once it is approved I will apply for a 501c3 designation and found a non-profit focused on fitness programs for recovering addicts. I’m not sure exactly what it will look like or even how it will come together, but I’m taking the first steps toward my bigger vision of a sober fitness community.
I wanted to take a minute and write a post sharing with my friends where I am. It’s a good place. It’s a much much better place than 101 days ago FOR SURE. And if you struggle with an addiction of any kind, you can talk to me (or please talk to someone) and you can move past it. Problems don’t go away, but the problems get much much better.