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I used to daydream about what my life would be like if I wasn’t an alcoholic: I graduated college. Had a great job. I lived in my own apartment and paid my bills on time. I called my parents just to say “hi.” I went for a run every evening and made dinner with my wonderful boyfriend.
My reality? I’d spent the last four years struggling to complete my final semester of college. I was unable to hold a job. I lived in my parent’s house. Had two DUIs. I was broke, in debt and unable to maintain relationships of any kind. Not to mention, I was facing the very real possibility of life in a homeless shelter if I came home drunk one more time.
During my blackouts I said horrible things to family and friends, passed out in my yard, and drove my car with absolutely no idea where I was going or any recollection of what I had done.
As a 25-year-old alcoholic I spent a tremendous amount of time feeling sorry for myself as I watched my peers graduate and experience life in ways that seemed so far out of reach. Embarking on exciting careers. Living happily on their own. Getting married, starting families and traveling. You know, actually living life.
My Freefall into Darkness
Alcoholism took me down faster than I ever thought possible. One day I was 21-year-old who partied too much but still held her shit together; the next day I was an alcoholic. I just didn’t realize it yet.
Although I was surrounded by people who were making the same choices and struggling through the same hangovers, they somehow managed to progress through life with plenty of successes to show along the way.
But when I drank nothing else seemed to matter. School and work were no longer priorities, and my values and self-respect dried up faster than my last bottle of vodka. Each day was more hopeless and pathetic than the last. The only glimmer of hope I felt was the calm that washed over my soul with my first drink of the day (or night, depending on what time I had blacked out).
As long as I had vodka I could usually convince myself that I was going to be ok; that I would make it through the day and pretend to be a functioning human. I now know that I was not fooling anyone, nothing about my life indicated that I was “functioning” or even “barely hanging on” – I was already gone. My world was dark and lonely and the scariest part was that I no longer cared.
-J, Raleigh House alumni
Diary of an Alcoholic: Part 2 – Facing the Truth
Part two of J’s remarkable recovery story, including the impact of her alcohol addiction on her family, will be ready for you soon. In the meantime, if you or someone you love is struggling with drug or alcohol dependency, please call The Raleigh House today.
When you’re ready to start, The Raleigh House is ready to help. Call us today.