This was sent to me anonymously and I can respect that. It helped me as I know it will help you too. -Stef
I never really gave drinking much thought at all, unless I was out at a bar in my early twenties with friends I would have a couple of drinks. Usually beer, nothing more. Sometimes it made me sick the next day and I would go months without drinking. I don’t remember ever buying drinks to have at home, unless I had friends over. After my second daughter was born, I found myself just generally unhappy and though most of it came from my marriage, I was generally a happy person and didn’t really have any major life issues. I loved being a mom and my kids were my world. One weekend I threw a shower for my cousin and I bought a few bottles of wine. I opened one early and ended up a little tipsy throughout the party. After everyone left I finished off the rest and got very sick and was hungover the next day.
A few days after that I was frustrated and uptight and remembered how good that “tipsy” felt the weekend before. I picked up a bottle that afternoon at the store and started drinking while cooking and listening to music. This was the beginning of my “ritual”. I drank this way every day, or every other day for about 2 more years until my divorce from my first husband. During (and after) my divorce I still drank, but I also started going to the gym and I was holding down a job I enjoyed. I would say I didn’t think my drinking was a problem. During this time I dated and was enjoying my kids. I even tried to get back together with my ex-husband. (what would the kids today say? epic fail?)
In 2007 I began dating my now husband. He is such a happy, outgoing, charming person. We loved the beach and gardening, and most importantly we both loved God. Meeting him and his family really helped me get back into my faith. He was the husband I had longed for, the partner I wanted to raise my kids with and have a future with. Our whirlwind romance led us to the courthouse for our simple vows only 6 months after we began dating. 6 months after that we got pregnant. I did drink during our courtship and early months of marriage, but still, It wasn’t so much that I (or he) thought it was a problem. 9 months of being pregnant and about 5 months after my baby was born I did not drink.
One day, I had that anxiety I used to feel. I was overwhelmed. The house was a mess, and the children were demanding. My husband was demanding…. I bought a bottle of wine and sipped it to calm down while cooking dinner and listening to music. Ahh, I missed this feeling. I was very careful to not drink too much as I was nursing. I did drink every few days but carefully monitored the timing and amount so I would not hurt my baby. After she weaned at 9 months, my drinking escalated. I began to think I may have a problem, but I could go 4 or 5 days and not care if I had any… so I would reward myself on that 6th day. Soon I would drink earlier and earlier and by the time my husband was home, I was just mad at him for everything. He never had a chance most days to be greeted by the loving, happy wife I really wanted to be. I would go to bed early, and wake up early, scared to death of the things I might have said to him. He would always forgive me. I would always vow to stop, but instead hid my drinking. I would say I “tried” to hide my drinking. He always knew, but most days didn’t say anything, unless I caused a fight.
In February 2010 I was pregnant again. We were happy and I was thankful and I stopped drinking. I didn’t even have a craving and I thanked God everyday and was just certain this baby was sent to save my life and my marriage. On Feb. 13th 2010 I came home from running a 5k, and started bleeding. After a week of not knowing if there was indeed a baby, my Dr. confirmed it was a molar pregnancy. This was the second time I had a molar pregnancy.
After my surgery and a round of chemo (molar pregnancy has a small percent chance of becoming cancerous), I picked my ritual right back up full force. My drinking became out of control. I would hide it, lie about it, regret it, promise to not do it and then do it again. The longest I could go was 3-4 days. On weekends I drank the most, usually wine, sometimes rum, sometimes beer. I was such a sad person and I had no idea why. My husband was wonderfully supportive every time I told him I wanted to stop, but this was my problem, how could he fix it for me? I felt like I was ruining my marriage, and indeed I was. I loved my husband so much, I had no idea why I kept hurting us by drinking. We had a great life. It was just bliss – when I was sober.
That whole spring and summer I drank. That whole spring and summer he asked me to get help, and he also started to lean on another woman for his joy in life. It wasn’t me anymore that gave him happiness, it was her. When I found out about the affair, I was 9 days sober. My question to him was “what is it about her that makes her so much better than me?” His answer: “She’s not an alcoholic”. Wow! I wanted to punch him in the face, (and her) and I wanted to leave him right then and there. I wanted to die. I wanted the truth to disappear. Surprisingly I did not want to drink. Somehow, that is all I had at the moment. I did not want to run to the store and drink to forget it, I wanted to overcome it. I wanted to stay sober. If not for my marriage, for my 3 beautiful kids.
Today I am 127 days sober. I am in reconciliation with my husband and it is not easy, but it is a start. I am pregnant again. I found out I was pregnant a few weeks after I found out about the affair. Some days I feel the baby was sent to protect me. I never did crave alcohol while pregnant. My doctor and midwife both suggested I may have had postpartum depression after my last baby and the molar pregnancy. (and after my second daughter as well, when I explained the feelings leading up to my drinking) After the pregnancy I will take special care to try to handle these feelings right away, without turning to alcohol. I am nervous, and I am still hurt from the affair, but I am trying to learn not to dwell on those things and just take care of my family and this new baby.
I hang on to this verse John 16:33 “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”