51 days ago today, I gulped down my last $6 quad latte. (Yes. I said quad.)
It wasn't an easy decision to come to. Coffee has been my best friend, my lover, my everything since I can remember - since high school times. And it's become even more important to me since I stopped drinking alcohol. It's been my special drink, my little privilege. One of my last fucking vices like sexting and saying really bad words a lot.
But somewhere along the way, because it was so important, because it was one of my last vices, it became a terribly unhealthy relationship.
Here is how, and why, I quit. Read More
The first time it happened was in Italy, 3 short months after I had stopped drinking altogether. A hot little Italian waiter (who I'd later make out with - fuck yes, Italy) and I were flirting as I ate my way through two entire pizzas. Near the end of the meal he told me he had a special treat for me, and returned with a glass of dessert wine.
It sat there. I stared at it. He stood there. He stared at me. He smiled, and did that thing with his hands that is the international symbol for "please go ahead and drink it." I blinked. Time stood still. The first thought was crap, I don't know how to say "alcoholic" in Italian. The second thought was, I wonder if I can ask him for a cappuccino instead. The third thought was not a thought at all, but that aching I get in my tummy when I am afraid I'm going to hurt someone's feelings.
Me: "Non grazie."
Me: "No bevo alcol."
Me: "No bevo alcol!"
Him: Sad face.
I smiled politely, thanked him again, and told him I'd take a cappuccino. He persisted. "Not even a little?" No. Not even a little. Read More
One of the biggest parts of my healing, one of the biggest blessings I have found on this path, is the art of understanding that all that came before today was simply there to bring me to today - exactly. Is the art of understanding that these perceived blocks on my path and these perceived faults in my journey, were really JUST THE PATH, were really JUST THE JOURNEY. It cannot be broken down into good or bad, dissected into failures and losses and the good stuff. It just is. And coming to terms with the fact that it just is, has freed me of my past, freed me of my pain, freed me to be here now reap the reward and the lessons of those perceived failings.
Here are five big things I could regret and feel a ton of shame around, that I have instead accepted as just part of the beautiful package that is our unfolding. Read More
A few days before Christmas last year, I sat in my therapists office, sipping in the lavender flavored air and her warm sage advice. I was in a good place. My job wasn't killing me too much, I hadn't had a hangover in what seemed an eternity, I was in yoga teacher training and continually becoming a more dedicated and regular practitioner, I knew what self love meant (really!), and my apartment was clean (this is a really big benchmark for adulthood for me). I actually remember sitting there across from her feeling…together.
We were talking about my upcoming trip home for the holidays to my mother's house. I told her that while in the past these holiday gatherings had tended to undo me in the worst possible way, and that I was actually looking forward to this time home and this big holiday affair. I was severely optimistic because this time, I was a grown up. A spiritually progressed grown-up by Oprah standards.
This year would be different because I was different.
So three days later as I sat in my childhood home living room in a ball on the floor sobbing uncontrollable hate tears, a string of "fuck-you assholes" hanging thick in the air somewhere between my mother and sister and I as they continued on unaffected in their game of cribbage, their normal "there she goes" giggling eye roll routine only stoking the hate fire further - I couldn't help but wonder.
What. The. Fuck. Happened. Read More
I wanted to talk about this down the line. When it was neat and tidy. A story of where I used to be and how I made it through as opposed to a story of where I am and how I struggle. But the point here is to be real. The point is to encourage you to be able to talk about your dark parts so you can bring them to the light. The point is to encourage everyone to talk about our collective dark parts. So we stop putting on a fucking show. So we stop feeling alone and different and less and afraid. To tear down the picture-perfect-social media façade so we have an equal playing field and stop competing with each other with things none of us actually has anyway.
We have a tendency to talk about things once they are pretty or at least prettier. But for us to all heal, for us to address the things that are true to us, the things that make us human and unique and special, we need to be able to talk about them as they are. Not as we wished they were.
So here is a whole lot of shit about the thing that feels the least pretty in my life: my relationships with men. Read More
If you follow me on Instagram, you may know that this past Monday I started - for the second time - May Cause Miracles by Gabby Bernstein - a 40 Day fear cleanse based on the principles of A Course In Miracles. This post is meant to help you understand how it helped my overall recovery process, and give you an overview on how it works so you can decide for yourself if you'd like to try it. Read More
I swam into the holiday a little flat on gratitude. I'm not sure what it is but sometimes the amount of Barbie bodied yogis on Instagram pretzeling themselves into positions 99.9% of us will never achieve from beaches we'll never travel to with the words "Practice Gratitude" pisses me off. Which - if you read anything I post - I REALIZE says more about me than anything else, and isn't, umm, very yogi like. That lesson isn't lost on me. But let's be real, I don't always practice what I preach. I aim to, but I am FAR from perfect, and I embrace my judgy inner-bitch when she comes out (she's just there to teach me something…).
Anyway, as I went into the week planning my posts and thinking just exactly what words of wisdom I would share about gratitude in this very special week dedicated to thankfulness, I found myself exhausted, annoyed, PMS-ing, hating on and judging the grateful beach yogis. So I skipped the forced bullshit post and reasoned with myself that the capacity for gratuity comes and goes, and it would return, and I wouldn't be marred for not posting something about gratitude... Read More
While this post is intended for the newly sober at Thanksgiving, it's actually a great post for ANYONE looking for a more peaceful, healthy, and flowing Thanksgiving holiday - sober or not - and is also a great post to keep in your toolbox for any high-stress social situation. Read More
I had my last last drink on April 13, 2013.
There is no way to describe what has happened in those months since. As far as I'm concerned, my life can be cut up into two boxes. The life before I learned what it meant to not drink, and the life after. The former a slow progression through a tolerable life with a severe longing for something more and a clear sense of never having or being enough. The latter not just the escape from that…the latter truly the having of things that I had always assumed were just not for me.
What unfolded was something beyond my wildest dreams. What unfolded was what happens when you decide for you and only you, and when you clear the space to make YOU happen.
Whatever benefits alcohol seems to provide I assure you they are trite in comparison to the possibilities of the life that stands beyond. Saying goodbye to the junk was saying goodbye to the life I had accepted as good enough and hello to a life that continues to unfold in magical, reality defying ways.
If you are looking for a little inspiration of what is on the other side...read these 19 things I have done in 19 months.
One of my ultimate joys in this world is being on the cutting edge of something. Whether it's a new indie band no one has heard of or some random exotic vegetable that makes your teeth shiny or some new app that brings Philz to your door (WHY haven't they invented this), if it's hip and new and on the brink and not Google Glass, I want it.
And this is exactly how I feel about sobriety. In my opinion, the choice of sober is avant-garde.
This article, Sober And Sold-Out: Dance Club In Sweden Cuts Booze For A Night, is just one more piece in the masterpiece I see coming to fruition: a world where we drop our autopilot. A world where we look within for our confidence and our wildness. A world where we remember the hippest parties and dance until we drop from our pure and vital life force. A world without substance abuse and addiction by choice. A world worth leaving to our future generations.
If sobriety is whispering sweet nothings in your ear and you're finding yourself in a fear state, you're not alone. You're in fact in majorly good company, because to some degree, most people that drink have some fear around their relationship with it.
Here are 11 common fears people have that keep them from exploring the sober side of things, dispelled. Read More
It's funny the things that we are afraid to admit.
I have no problem telling people about my sex life (or lack thereof), my poop habits, my deepest insecurities. Let's talk about how much coffee and pastry I consume, how much I struggle with not ending every sentence with the word fuck, or how terrified I am every day I sit down to work on Hip Sobriety. I have this eye fungus from my mascara that won't go away. Sometimes I'm too lazy to brush my teeth. I still text ex-boyfriends and tell them I miss snuggling with them. I look at my ass in mirrors way too much. I don't have health insurance.
I shamelessly and unapologetically admit all. Weellll, mostly all. Okay fine. All except for how I really feel about addiction, sobriety, recovery, relapse, AA, stigmatization, 12 steps, that I fiercely reject the label addict...
So you know, all. All except the risky things. All except the reasons I started Hip Sobriety in the first place.