I thought you said you were wearing all black…

At TCU {Texas Christian University} I was a professional student. I would have gotten a degree in everything there with the exception of anything science related. I graduated {when my parents threatened to stop paying for my education} with degrees in Criminal Justice and Advertising and Public Relations and minors in Math, Social Work, Sociology, Religion and Psychology.

When my parents told me I had one semester left to graduate I pulled it together and did it.

I also told my parents I needed one more elective and it had to be going to NYC to intern for the Republican National Convention in 2004.

Out of 700 candidates, I got the best internship. A prestigious internship with the Detroit Free Press, which apparently has/had the best internship program for journalism students. I was pissed.

I wanted to work for MTV Rock the Vote and it said so on my application. I was more interested in Puff Daddy than George Bush.

Upon trying to find my boss in a crowded lobby in the Hilton Hotel on 53rd, we were both on cell phones that were breaking up. I thought she said she was wearing all black.

“That’s my favorite color!” I exclaimed with much enthusiasm. “So sliming.”

Turns out she was behind me. She was black and was wearing a denim skirt and white blouse. She snaps her phone together and looks at me with disgust.

It was not a good first impression.

She had my resume in her hand and said, “It says hear you wanted to work for MTV?” I nod my head up and down.

“Do you know anything about politics? Do you even know how to write?”

I said I knew who George Bush was, and I had been told I was a pretty talented writer.

I ended up with three bylines and a photo credit that week.

I met Larry King, Tim Russert, who called me “lil red”, Wolf Blitzer, Rudy Guliani, George Bush, Laura Bush, Dick Cheney, Anderson Cooper, the list is endless.

The night before the last night of the convention my boss took me out until 5 am. We had four bottles of champagne between the two of us. She told me I needed to change my clothes and meet her at her room in 15 minutes.

I informed her I might die if I did that, and she said if I wanted to be in this business, to get use to it.

I went upstairs and puked several times and threw clothes on.

She was eating powdered donuts in the cab and I had to open the door and start puking. I still hate the smell of a powdered donut.

We get to our work station in Madison Square Gardens and she sends me to cover a story.

It was a fat man and I could barely see and my body was dripping in sweat.

In what seemed like seconds the fat man stopped talking and I looked at my notepad. I had drawn a heart. Hmph.

I went back to the table and Allison ask me if we needed to write a story.

“Nope.” I replied with confidence.

“He didn’t say anything important?”

“Nope.”

Allison looks at me questioningly and I said I had better get on the floor to see what was going on in the convention room of Madison Square Gardens.

When I got home to Fort Worth that evening and turned on the news Peter Jennings face appeared to announce the “Person of the Week.” Someone he was calling the Architect of the Republican Convention.

And low and behold, a picture of the fat man came on the screen.

Karl Rove.

My jaw dropped.

Oh Fuck.

Needless to say my career in news did not take off.

Hey, if it had been Puff Daddy I would have known who the hell he was.

 

Probation Conditions

As part of my probation, it was stated that if I had a violation of any kind, I would have to get an ankle monitor. I was absolutely positive that would never happen. Then life happened.

I have an interlock in my car to detect if I have been drinking. While driving home from Austin and it was going off, it kept failing to detect my breath and kept saying “blow again” so I would. Over and over and over. The thing refused to work. I stopped to get gas and the car wouldn’t start again because it wouldn’t read my breath.

Naturally I started crying.

Then it locked me out and said… Violation.

I called Smart Start to figure out what on earth was going on. The lady on the phone explained that because I live in Texas, the humidity can build up in the monitor and cause it to not read.

I ask her what to do.

She told me to go in the gas station and put the interlock in one of the freezers for a few minutes.

“But if you disconnect it, it says abort tamper, which is another violation.”

She told me unless I wanted to stay at the gas station, I was going to have to disconnect it.

When my probation officer found out, she immediately ordered an ankle bracelet.

“But I didn’t do anything wrong!” I whined.

“Doesn’t matter,” she replied. It clearly states if you have a violation of any kind, you get an ankle monitor.”

I spent the next few weeks in long pants and full of resentment. I was fucking pissed. This little new accessory cost $500/month. I have been complaining to anyone who will listen and bitching that this is all about money and how dare they do this…

No one cares.

A few days ago I started googling ‘celebrities with ankle monitors’ and Martha Stewart was one of the first to pop up. She looked charming in hers. Eve and Andy Dick were pictured showing their’s off on various red carpets, which prompted me to make a decision. I was going to show mine off too.

I’ve been extra pissed because I wasn’t going to be able to go swimming with my kids. Then I thought… I’m pretty flexible… I bet I could just hang my legs on the edge and submerge my body.

And what do you know… it worked. So if you see me out and about with my new very expensive jewelry, you’ll know why.

I think I’m going to bedazzle the mother fucker.

My First Drink

The first time I can remember chugging a drink I was eight years old. I was in the third grade at All Saints Episcopal school in Fort Worth. Every Friday was Eucharist, and All Saints served real wine. To grade school children. I remember the first sip I had. It was way better than Coke. A Cola folks. The white stuff came later, Jeez. I’m not Drew Barrymore. Although she was my idol growing up… Maybe that was a sign.

During the advent season we did what a lot of other places do, we collected cans to donate to a local shelter.

My friend Leigh and I were selected to carry the cans to the chapel.

Upon arrival we noticed the advent wreath was on fire and had turned over and the chapel was going up in flames.

I turned to go get help but Leigh grabbed my arm.

“Wait! The wine,” she exclaimed and I instantly knew what she meant.

We ran over to where the sacrament was stored and took turns chugging the wine, probably half a bottle.

Then we went to get help.

We got our picture in the paper and a pizza party for our class.

My first memory of alcohol and all I can think about is two-fold, one, God was involved from the very beginning, and two, I was rewarded for drinking. Something that would become a theme in early adolescence.

El Cosmico

There is something a bit magical that happens in the west Texas desert after you pass Alpine headed to Marfa. The rough rogue highway that leads you to the tiny town of Marfa is somewhat mystical. Marfa, the small Texas town that artist have been flocking to for decades is a must see if you are traveling in west Texas.

I had the pleasure of traveling there last summer when I took a Design Build Adventure class in welding led by Captain Jack Sanders, or as I knew him Jay, back when we became acquainted in the seventh grade at All Saints school in Fort Worth.

Jay, or rather Jack, and I were friends through high school and then, as people do when you go off to college and there is no such thing as Facebook, we drifted and went our separate ways. I stayed in Fort Worth with many of our high school friends and attended Texas Christian University. Jack went on to Auburn, I think…

When I saw Jack again at our ten-year reunion he was nothing like I remembered. He had transformed from Jay to Jack, had a beard, and looked way more hippieish than I ever remembered him. He had gone to architecture school and if I recall right, and I may not, it seems he was teaching at the University of Texas.

When Facebook came around we became ‘friends’ and I was able to catch up on his life. It appeared he was married, had kids, and was doing a lot of cool things, like teaching camps on how to weld.

That’s cool. I thought. I’d love to do that, something so… not me. So when I saw a post about his camp in Marfa I signed up and headed west to the rugged beauty of Marfa.

The camp was being held at El Cosmico, the most mystical magical place I have ever been. Liz Lambert, who is credited for revamping South Congress in Austin in the late 1990’s, brought her renegade spirit to Marfa and El Cosmico was born. A campground where you can, camp, obviously, in your own tent, OR you can sleep in a teepee, a yurt, or one of many adorable little trailers that each come with their own distinct personality.

I had chosen to stay in the smallest trailer available, Pinky, the color lived up to its name. I unpacked, put on a robe {one that I ended up purchasing in the gift shop and wear daily}, unpacked my bags, and went to go meet Captain Jack for our intro to camp happy hour.

Jack walked us along the property explaining that when he had first arrived there was nothing but some rusty plans and a dream. A dream that Liz Lambert had and he created.

I looked around awe-struck that the boy I had met in the seventh grade was responsible for creating such an amazing space in the desert. It’s just so… Marfa. It’s Austin meets desert in the hippest of ways.

There are wood burning hot tubs where you can relax and look up at the most beautiful of night skies. And it’s fun to walk around the property and take in the beauty of west Texas and the design of Captain Jack and Liz, their collaboration just mesmerizing.

I spent more in the gift shop then I did on my trailer and I treasure everything I came home with. I cannot wait to go back. I had planned to go in September for the anual Trans Pecos festival held at El Cosmico where my friends in Golden Dawn Arkestra play every year, but life happens and I was unable to attend. It’s definitely a goal for next year, and I should start planning now as the campground usually books up by this time of the year…

So if you get the itch to head west, don’t miss this spot. You’ll thank me later.

Parenting Fail

Do you ever have those days as a parent where you just want to throw your hands in the air and give up? Where you feel like you are, by far, the worst parent in the world? Well I have those days all the time. I’m sure I have them more than most. I just know I do. Last weekend I had one of those days.

I was going over to my mom’s to celebrate her birthday, and I needed to swing by the grocery store to get a card. The grocery store is in a shopping center with quite a bit of traffic, and quite a few other popular stores.

I had the kids and the dog with me. The kids were complaining, shocker, and did not want to go into the store. I assured them I just needed to grab one item, the birthday card, and would be in and out. They were instructed to stay in the car and watch the dog. I mean… how hard it that? Pretty simple, right?

I go into the store, look at maybe three cards, grab one, and go through self check out.

When I get back to the parking lot, not more than five minutes later, I find my children running through the crowded parking lot chasing the dog, who has his leash on.

My oldest sees me and screams, “If you hadn’t left us in the car for five hours this would NEVER have happened!”

And my youngest is screaming, “MOM! Our dog is about to be MURDERED!” And is bawling. Another customer sees my horror and joins in the chase. The dog heads toward a busy street and I am screaming at my children to not chase the dog into the busy street, which, sure, they should know, but… at this point I trust no one.

Two employees join in the chase and another customer jumps in too. It’s quite the scene. The dog, Donkey Kong, is freaking fast. No one can catch the dang dog.

My youngest throws himself down in the parking lot and starts screaming more about our dog, who he is sure is about to be murdered, and I’m not sure the dog isn’t. I have to run to my child to make sure he doesn’t get run over.

A few minutes later the dog decides he needs to poop and heads for grass and we are able to step on his leash and corral him.

I notice a women in the car next to us scowling at me on her cell phone and I’m 99% sure she’s calling CPS.

I thank everyone who has jumped in the crazy chase and herd the children and the dog in the car and try to escape before I’m apprehended.

So the dog and my children are still alive and I chalk it up to yet another parenting fail. We all have those days. Mine just seem to occur for all to see.

Me too.

I can’t hold it in any longer. And not because I’m dying to tell about the time I was raped. I won’t name who did it. It doesn’t matter. I was raped when I was twenty-one. I told the guy no and he continued to force me to have sex with him. I worked at Blue Mesa and it was a fellow waiter.

Last March, I was drug into an Alley when I was on vacation in L.A. I was drunk. I was walking to get cigarettes in a nice part of L.A. I thought I was safe. It was about 5 p.m. I had my hair, as usual, in a messy bun on top of my head. Before I knew what was happening, I was drug in an Alley. My pants were ripped off, and someone I couldn’t really see that well, because I was screaming like hell and fighting, was trying to rape me. I clawed. I scraped. I got away. I ran. I ran to a gas station and was screaming and crying, and a complete wreck. A total fucking wreck.

No one would help me. The employees would not call the cops. I didn’t know what to do. I went back outside and continued to sob uncontrollably. Finally, a black guy on a bike with a thick gold chain rolled up next to me and ask to help me. I threw my arms around him and begged him to call the cops. I hugged him and told him over and over “thank you for helping me,”

He did.

The cops came.

I was taken to the police station in Encino Heights.

I filed charges.

The police officers were beyond kind. I was a mess. Still drunk.

The police officers gave me part of their dinner, a pizza, where I tried to eat a piece as I sobbed.

I was taken to get a rape kit done in L.A. while on vacation.

I told them this wasn’t necessary as the act was not completed because of my fight.

They did it anyway.

My best friend Jamie Glaviano came to the station and held my hand while I cried. While I sobbed. I was shaken. I didn’t understand how this happened.

The nurse who performed the test said IN THE AREA IN L.A.  I was in they got about 3 victims A NIGHT. A NIGHT FOLKS.

The detectives flew out to Fort Worth to help me try to identify my attacker. I couldn’t. I was trying to get away from someone who had attacked me from behind. I couldn’t tell if he was short or tall. I had a vague description… Mexican… I thought. Sorta thin. Average height, from the 30 seconds of hell I remembered. I wasn’t exactly focused on his face while trying to save my life.

I’m writing this because all of the “Me Too” stories have sparked something in me. I don’t want to say who raped me at Blue Mesa. It’s embarrassing.

I don’t know who my attacker was in L.A., but because it was a stranger, I would have pressed charges. I knew the guy at Blue Mesa well. It was awkward because I had had sex with a few of the waiters at Blue Mesa, but I did not willingly have sex with him. Who would have believed me? Some, yes. Some no. I wasn’t about to put myself in that situation.

All of this sparked a conversation last night at a meeting I was at. Matt Lauer was the “latest” and I spoke about my experiences. I said, what is crazy… is that for 15 years I worked in an industry where men grabbed my boobs, my ass, my pussy… And I thought nothing of it. I thought it “came with the territory” because I was a female.

Because I was a female… Think about that males. I thoughts I deserved to have my boobs, ass, and pussy grabbed, at conventions, because I was a female, and working, and therefore, had no power. Men would often say things like, “Add that to my bill.” Or… “Are you married?” And if I answered “Yes.” The next question would usually be “Are you happily married?”

This is what I learned… Men in Power are usually pigs. It doesn’t matter if you are at a bar, a propane convention, a news convention. Men in power think they have the control and women are conditioned to “shut up and take it.” That’s what I thought.

At the 2004 RNC {Republican National Convention} I met every famous news person you can think of. My job, amongst other things, was to show up at the crack of dawn and get on the convention floor and sit for 8-10 hours next to a photographer. We were second row behind AP {Associated Press}. My memories from that week are amazing. One of the best experiences of my life.

Al Franken was there. He was a total asshole. Wolf Blitzer and Larry King were beyond professional. Anderson Cooper was less well known. He wasn’t “out” and every female I knew wanted to make out with him. Tim Russert was my favorite and called me “little red” all week. Rudy Guliani was a close second. A total politician, and very very kind. Karl Rove, was an asshole. Laura Bush, southern sweet. I wished she was my aunt.

The photographer I was FORCED TO SIT NEXT TO for a week grabbed my crotch on the convention floor. Yes, on the floor. I could not move. We were packed in that “room” which happened to be Madison Square Gardens. I told my boss. Who was female. She rolled her eyes and said, “that asshole.”

That was it. I honestly, didn’t think much about it until all this “Me too” crap came up. Because I didn’t consider that a violation. Which is… crazy. When I count how many times I was raped, it is one. That night, after work, at Blue Mesa.

When I count how many times I was attacked violently, it is one. That night. In L.A. It wasn’t rape, but it was scary as hell and I’ll never ever ever forget it.

When I think about how many times as a woman, I’ve been sexually harassed… I could not even begin to count.

Isn’t that sad? That’s sad. I live in a country where I have been conditioned “as a female” to shut up and take it. Because… “it happens to everyone.” And it does. To every female I know.

Enough is Enough.

Where does one draw the line? It’s a slippery slope. If you are a man, you should not touch a woman who does not want to be touched. Period. If you do, you sir… are a pig. An asshole. And you should be scared about what is happening, because if you committed a crime, you should be punished. Women should not have to accept this behavior.

Now I know I don’t have to.

Amen sisters.

Together we are strong. We are not alone. And we will be heard.

 

My Brag Book

One of my ex’s was rummaging through my stuff {probably looking for valuables to steal, because, let me tell you, I know how to pick ’em} and came across one of my photo albums and started thumbing through it.

Here is the conversation that transpired between us…

“Whoa, there are a lot of famous people in here.”

“Yeah.”

“How did you meet so many famous people?”

“I dunno. I just walk up to famous people and start talking to them.” Then I glance over his shoulder to see who he is referring to. “Ohhh… I met those people while interning for the Detroit Free Press in 2004. I was covering the Republican National Convention for them.” {You can read about that here}

“Who is the most famous person you have ever met?”

“I dunno. I guess it depends who you consider famous.”

“What do you mean?”

“Well… in that book it’s probably Larry King. Or Anderson Cooper, he’s really short, look… I think I’m taller than he is. Tim Russert was my favorite. He called me ‘little red’ all week and was so nice! But I also got to attend Wednesday Night Live that week hosted by Dick and Lynn Chaney, and the cast of Saturday Night Live. Lorne Michaels is cool! I actually bumped into him later that week at the Broadway show Wicked and he remembered me and stopped to talk to me before I went to the restroom. Then he said he was sorry for taking up my time… I mean, seriously?! I didn’t even think to beg him for a job… biggest lost opportunity ever… Oh, and I had to interview Laura Bush that week too.”

“Damn, who else have you met?”

I scrunch my forehead and try to remember names.

“Karl Rove, Rudy Giuliani, The Cure. I partied with them until four in the morning… Meg Ryan… Vanilla Ice,” I trailed off lost in thought.

{you can read about my night with The Cure here, and Vanilla Ice and more Meg Ryan here and Karl Rove here}

“How’d you meet Meg Ryan?”

“Flattery. I was eating at The Dutch, or Dutchman, or something like that in New York City and she was sitting behind us. I ask the waiter if that was, and before I could say Meg Ryan, he cut me off and said NO! And that she did NOT want to be bothered and she hated it when people approach her. And since my favorite thing in the world is people telling me I can’t do something, I got up and walked over… I apologized profusely for interrupting her dinner, then immediately followed with, it’s just that my table and I are discussing whether or not you are Meg Ryan and I said, impossible, she’s way too young to be Meg Ryan. That guy {who was clearly her son} is probably her date. She laughed and grabbed my arm, and said that was just the sweetest thing. She looked over to my table and waved, and put her hand over her heart and mouthed ‘thank you.’ Then she introduced me to her son and talked to me about the new exhibit at the Met.”

See… it’s just like the column is US Weekly… Stars… They’re just like us! Well no shit. If you ever run into one it’s just knowing what to say. Or acting like you have absolutely no idea who they are, or actually having no idea who they are, like When I told Roger O’Donnell, keyboardist for The Cure, that it was so cute he dressed up like The Cure to go see The Cure. I really didn’t have a clue. It’s not like they ever show the keyboardist on the big screens when you are at a concert. Now… when the drummer walked in five minutes later, my jaw totally hit the floor.

And of course, the right kind of flattery does get you everywhere. Even partying with rockstars until 4 a.m.

Love Yourself Right Where You Are

I am so far from where I want to be. But if I have learned one thing, it’s this… There really is no time but now.

If I waited to love myself until I was thin enough, looked my ‘best’, was where I wanted to be career wise, I might, and probably will, die before any of that happens. Because I’ll probably never view myself as being at my ‘best’. At least I hope not, because… there’s only one place to go once you reach the top, and it’s not further up.

So this holiday season, when tensions can tend to run high, I’ve decided to give myself a gift. The gift of self-love. The gift of loving myself right where I am,  problems, imperfections and all.

My kids tell me all the time I’m ‘the best mom ever.’ Bless their souls. They have no idea how imperfect I am. I’m choosing to see myself as they do {before they turn into self-righteous teenage assholes} I’m choosing to love myself just as I am. Fat rolls and all. I’m choosing to enjoy life. The good, the bad, and the downright ugly. And I challenge y’all to do the same thing. Quit telling yourself you aren’t good enough.

You are good enough. Right where you are. Celebrate yourself. Celebrate life. Celebrate just being.

There is always something to be grateful for. Like, I can walk. And I have shoes. Someone doesn’t. Some people can’t walk and are confined to wheelchairs, but they aren’t paraplegic. And those that are paraplegic can still speak, and think. And so on and so on.

Someone told me after I quit drinking that alcoholism is like that game ‘whack a mole.’ That once you knock out one problem 10 others pop up in their place, and man, that guy was dead on.

I had this notion that quitting drinking would somehow solve all my problems. Ha! What a joke. All it did was magnify how bad I had screwed up so much in my life. I’m still suffering the consequences and that isn’t going to change anytime soon.

So. Be. It. I have surrendered. Waved my white flag and given my problems {usually on a daily basis} to God. God as I see him. Or her. God as I know him. Or her. Turning your life over doesn’t make your problems go away, but it is freeing.

So forgive yourself. Love yourself. Be patient with yourself.

I didn’t create my problems overnight and they certainly aren’t going to go away overnight. Stay in the present. You can’t change the past and you can’t predict the future. The only time we have is now. Enjoy it. Enjoy the mess. Love the mess. Be kind to yourself and to others. Be humble. Show grace. Be of service to others.

Love yourself. You have my permission, so do it. Do it today. Quit putting it off, there is no telling what tomorrow may bring so give yourself permission to love every flaw, every imperfection, everything that makes you so blissfully uniquely you.

Love. Love. Love. It’s all we got folks. And time isn’t going to stop ticking along anytime soon. Hold your loved ones tight. Tell them what they mean to you. That’s what this upcoming season is all about, not the gifts, although those are nice too. It’s about connecting in this oh-so-crazy world we live in. And it is bat shit crazy. And we are the only ones who can make it better. It starts and ends with love and that means loving yourself first.

Take care, you beautiful humans you. Tis the season.

xoxo

Win It Wednesday’s Rodan + Fields

You know you love your skin care when you realize you are out of something and you freak out… I love Rodan and Fields. I started using it about a year and a half ago, and it is amazing!!!

I love the doctors, who are world famous now. Dr. Rodan and Dr. Fields still have active practices, even though they are like, multi billionaires now. They truly love what they do and they love helping women and men look their absolute best.

Their products have won awards, been in magazines like InStyle {click here} and Allure {click here}, been on countless TV shows and news programs. Yes, news programs, and like, the real news, not that fake ass crap. Check out the Forbes, yes, Forbes article here.

I personally use the Redefine regimen, the multi function eye cream, Intensive Renewing Serum, the Lip Serum, and Lash Boost. I can speak from experience that my skin lets me know when I have skipped a few days, or worse, a week! Gasp. My skin starts to feel and look duller and isn’t dewy like it is when I use my products. And yes, disclaimer, you do have to actually use the products for them to work.

I have been pinching my pennies cause I’m looking for a job y’all. Anyone want to hire me? I’m super fun to work with, promise. But I’ve been hearing so much on social media about the Active Hydration Bright Eye Complex that I finally broke down tonight and ordered it. Actually I ordered the package that comes with the Bright Eye Complex and the Lash Boost. It comes in the cutest package with an eyelash curler. The results for Lash Boost are amazing… and I cannot wait to try the Bright Eye Complex. These products work for real y’all!

Want to see some results? Here is Lash Boost followed by the Active Hydration.

Pretty amazing, don’t you think?

In my ‘Win it Wednesday’s’ I’m only giving away things I absolutely L.O.V.E. And this week you can get your hands on an Eye cream, the make up remover wipes, which are, like, totally amazing, and Acute Care, the only product where you can see results overnight. Yes, overnight. That is a package that would cost you about $300, and yes, you can get it here, for FREE. Free is like, one of my favorite words, you don’t want to miss this!

Comment here AND share this to your Facebook page to be entered to win.

Last weeks Kendra Scott went to Allison, and she’s pretty happy she won. You will be too if you get this sweet deal! If you would like to look at products or order now, you can click here to get your skincare on point.

xoxo

My 60 Days without Alcohol

I decided on August 24th that alcohol and I were no longer friends. It had done a number on myself and my relationships, and when someone said, “You, can’t stop drinking! That will never happen!” It pissed me off. I’m stubborn and hate being told I can’t do something. I can do anything I want to damnit! So I quit.

60 days later, I’m not going to tell  you it’s been easy. It hasn’t. I was using alcohol to not deal with a myriad of problems going on in my life. Some I created, some I didn’t. Most of them I had absolutely no control over, and my drinking had become daily.

Almost without thinking I would pop open a bottle. This use to occur when I got off of work, but then I quit working in October of 2016, so I had an abundance of time to do whatever I wanted. And apparently I wanted to drink.

Sunday brunch drinking turned into Monday day drinking. Why not? It’s not like I had anywhere to be. And since I was divorced, I had a week at a time to myself. Before I knew it I was drinking all the time. Sometimes I didn’t even really want to, but I’d think, meh, it’s there, why not?

Here’s another thing about me… well a couple of things. One, I’m an only child, and two, I’m never wrong. Or so I thought.

Everyone always comments how nice and sweet I am. That is… until you piss me off. I’ve been told by some of my best friends, who pissed me off, that my tongue is ruthless and cuts to the bone. This was a quality I knew I had and frankly, I liked it. Especially since I was never wrong. I felt like since I was speaking my truth, I could say anything I wanted. This fueled with lots and lots of drinking was a deadly combination. I alienated many a friend. My two best friends said they no longer recognized who I was as I drank more and thought more highly of myself than I ever had.

I thought I was invincible.

Turns out, I don’t possess that super hero quality. I only discovered this after losing my best friends and gaining legal issues. Hello DWI. I spiraled quickly in late 2016 and the first 8 months of 2017. Until that one person made the comment that changed everything. Telling me I couldn’t quit.

The hardest thing that has happened since quitting has been facing my fears without any numbing substance. I have many fears. Most are about things I can’t control and the unknown. I worry and worry, and worry about things that may or may not happen, and that fear was paralyzing.

I was also in a very unhealthy co-dependant relationship that I told myself I had to be in, because I could not face the fear of being alone. Not drinking allowed me to see just how destructive that relationship was, and I ended it.

And it was freeing. Absolutely freeing. I love being free. I forgot somewhere along the way that when I’m free, I’m happy. What a sobering slap in the face. Now, 63 days  in, I’m happier than I’ve been in over 20 years. Yep. 20 freaking years. That’s a long ass time.

Stopping drinking has taught me to look my fears straight on, and walk through them alone. I am no longer afraid. There are still problems and issues, but I’ve learned to not sweat the things I cannot control. And to not tell myself it would be horrible if ‘this’ or ‘that’ happens, because frankly, I don’t know. Maybe it would suck, maybe it wouldn’t. I won’t find out unless that said event actually occurs. I’ve learned in the last 63 days that the reality is often not what I thought it would be. Not at all. And I’ve realized I’m a pretty bad ass bitch. And I’m okay with that.

I don’t know if I’ll repair the relationships I’ve ruined, but I’m okay with that too. I’ve made it a year without the two people I cherished most in this world as far as friends go, and I’ve survived. Of course I miss them, but if they can’t forgive me that’s okay too. I’ve made some new kick ass friends and life goes on.

My outlook to the future is bright. It’s almost downright blinding. And I cannot wait to see what the next year brings. Challenges, ups, downs, life… I’ll take it. And I’ll survive. And I’ll be just fine.