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Difficult Roads Lead to Beautiful Destinations

The title of this blog comes from my sobriety app. Today wasn’t a good day, but it wasn’t a bad one either.

My goal was to be up by 9:00 AM. I was going to do my readings and then hit a meeting. However, I slept until 11 and was a few minutes late to the meeting, and I felt bad for being late but that’s okay.

During the meeting, I had said something. And someone thanked me for saying what I had said because it just reminded them of what they need to remind themselves and that felt amazing. I guess I did something right.

I came home, and had some stressors but I talked to someone about it and decided to do something to get me out of myself. I called a friend for advice, and followed the advice that was given. I did some housework, took care of the pets, meditated, and left for work. Not really looking forward to the 10 hour shift, however I did my best to stay out of that mindset. The stressor that was there before had gone away.

I always had something to focus on while at work. And I would say I was pretty productive.

We got insanely busy towards the end before we closed, but somehow, someway I managed to keep calm. Normally I’d start stressing out and get really irritated, but I didn’t.

We had some extra help tonight, and I was super thankful for that. Otherwise, we wouldn’t have gotten out at 3 AM. Granted, it didn’t matter to me what time we got out because either way there was always a plus side. If we didn’t have extra help, that would be more money in my pocket. Since we did have extra help, we got out a lot sooner than what we would have been.

Even had a few familiar faces come through. It was pleasant.

I just came home and to my surprise, I came home and my ceiling fan was working. So thanks dad. I don’t know what you did (it hasn’t been working ever since we moved in to the place we live at now).

Plus, I successfully came into the house and didn’t wake anybody up. So that was nice. Otherwise we would have had a problem. Well, I would of had a problem.

I have so much to be thankful for. Tonight would have been a night where I’d want something to drink. I had a long (but productive) day and felt that I would have deserved something. But to be completely honest, I’m way too tired to deal with that.

I need to start my readings up again soon, and I plan to. My main focus right now is not hitting the snooze button 20,000 times before waking up.

I’m thankful for today. I thank God for keeping me sober today.

Photo by Aaron Burden on Unsplash

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So About the Weekend,

 

I was sober for almost four months.

I don’t have a solid identity because I was drinking at the age most people try to figure it out. I was drinking at 16.

If someone says something about me, I believe them because I don’t know any better.

Multiple people have told me that they didn’t think I was an alcoholic. That I had only been 21 for a short amount of time and just ran in on some “bad luck” when I got busted for drinking and driving.

I felt that I had to prove to myself that I wasn’t an alcoholic, that I didn’t have a problem. I spent more time comparing  myself to other people rather than relating to other people.

I didn’t lose a home, a car, or kids. Maybe I’m not an alcoholic after all.

My sponsor stopped sponsoring me (I don’t blame her) and wasn’t that serious about another one.

I found out that I was off probation, and I started drinking again. At first I was able to control it, then Tuesday night happened.

I had stumbled to the bathroom (to go to the bathroom) and I stumbled back into my room. I was having a hard time breathing and it felt like something was weighing in on my chest. I thought I was dying and started to freak out.

It wasn’t until later that I realized I had had a panic attack. In the midst of this panic attack, my sober self came to me. I never wanted to feel that way again.

I don’t remember much from that night. I don’t even remember going to bed. It wasn’t until later I realized that I had blacked out.

I felt guilty, I felt ashamed. I was worried people, friends that I had met along this journey would hate me. They didn’t. They don’t. They greeted me with so much love and compassion. It was weird.

I had thought about shutting this blog down. I thought about my testimony and how everything that I’ve worked for within these last couple of months meant nothing because of this brief relapse.

After confiding in a close friend of mine, she told me that it’s all a part of my story and that it’s okay.

I decided to keep this blog going. I’m ashamed to admit that I wrote my last blog post while I was under the influence and I’m thinking about deleting that individual post, but still doing something along those lines.

I’m only 21 years old. What 21 year old wants to admit that she’s powerless over alcohol? I do. I don’t want another DUI, I don’t want to lose anything that I’ve worked hard for. I want a future for myself and if I keep on drinking, I won’t find any of that.

I’m thankful for the panic attack I had. Because it was painful. And I didn’t want to experience more pain. And that’s what alcohol will do to me if I continue.

I know that the thoughts of “maybe I’m not an alcoholic” will come back. But that’s when I’ll do something. Read, blog, go to a meeting, do something productive around the house (which would make my dad happy).

I’m thankful that I realize this now and not later. I’m thankful for the friends that didn’t abandon me.

I’m also thankful that this relapse was a quick one. There are a lot of people who relapse, and don’t always make it out.

Today was great. I was happy. I even did something I thought I could never do sober: dance. Funny right? It was weird at first, but I did it. And I did it sober. That’s a huge accomplishment for me.

I even went to a meeting that I had never gone before.

As far as my identity is concerned? I need to pray more, study the bible more, and blog more. Do things that make me happy and content, and finding my strength and peace within God, Jesus, and the Holy Ghost.

I don’t know if I’m impacting or inspiring anyone, but I hope that I am.

And to all of my readers that know me personally, please don’t tell me that you don’t think I’m an alcoholic. Don’t tell me that I’m not an alcoholic. I don’t have to explain to you why I think that I’m an alcoholic. The only thing I ask for is support. So far, that hasn’t been an issue.

Maya Angelou once said “You may encounter many defeats, but you must not be defeated. In fact, it may be necessary to encounter the defeats, so you can know who you are, what you can rise from, and how you can still come out of it.”

Bethany Hamilton is a surfer. A good surfer. A shark bit her arm off and she felt defeated, but she didn’t give up. She learned how to surf with one arm because she didn’t give up.

Ok so what, I stumbled. The point is I’m getting back up, I’m trying again, and I came out of it. I can look forward, I can move forward, I can look back and realize what got me here as long as I don’t dwell on the past. I’m not giving up.

Not every day is going to be as great as today, but all I have to worry about right now is today.

Photo by Vek Labs on Unsplash

 

 

An Open Letter to Guys and Girls

A friend suggested that I do something like this, except I refuse to treat it as a double standard.

If I were to write a letter to the guys and the girls, this is what it’d be:

Dear guys,

Stop trying to turn her on. Chances are she doesn’t want another midnight Romeo. She wants the flowers, the chocolates, and to be surprised almost all the time. She wants to be treated right. She doesn’t want to be ghosted after the first date. She wants to find that love that will consume her entirely.

You know how in the Notebook, Noah brings Allie back? Yeah. That’s what we’re talking about here.

And for a Christian, what I’m about to say is going to be pretty vulgar but someone needs to say it. STOP THINKING WITH YOUR DICKS. 

I mean damnit! I consider myself pretty old fashioned. The guy should communicate with her every once in a while, I mean is that too much to ask? One call, once a day. To tell her that you’re thinking of her and you can’t wait to see her again. I was in a relationship for almost TWO YEARS and if I didn’t hear from him, there wouldn’t be an “us.”

If I didn’t make plans, there wouldn’t be an “us.”

Does chivalry even exist anymore? I mean girls are so afraid now because they’ve been mistreated! I’ve been mistreated.

DOES LOVE EVEN EXIST. 

All you guys want is a good time, and us girls fall for it. Every fucking time.

And the girls aren’t so innocent either.

To the girls:

Stop judging by the looks. We deserve something good. It’s not the eyes that matter, it’s the heart. So if you freak out because you’re being treated well, stop freaking out. You say that good guys don’t exist and yet you put the good guys in the friend zone. I’ve been guilty of it. I’ve done it.

I’ve also been content with being single. With recognizing reasons why I’m not ready for a serious relationship yet, and maybe you should too.

What even is the definition of love?

1 Corinthians 13:4-7. This is the definition

“Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, It does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.”

My time will come. Yours will too.

Just because he is easy on the eyes DOES NOT mean he is easy on the heart. Chances are, we have alot of work to do before we commit into a serious relationship.

But us girls have to stop treating every guy like he is the same guy from our past. That’s not always the case.

And the guys have to stop treating us like we’re the same girl from his past.

We both play a part in this. I’m not going to act all innocent, because I’m not. We won’t find Mr. Right in the back of a club or on Tinder. Or on plenty of fish. Or bumble.

And you won’t find Mrs. Right in the back of a club, or on Tinder. Or on plenty of fish, or bumble.

To the guys and girls: Why don’t we actually give each other a fair chance, instead of acting like we’re better than the other?

I REFUSE to let myself believe that love doesn’t exist.

Why don’t we all start acting like Christians and not some shallow assholes? We will only stay young for a certain amount of time. But our hearts will stay with us.

Photo by Steve Halama on Unsplash

My Name is Kaitlin, and I’m an Alcoholic

I don’t even know where to begin right now. This is the first time disclosing my full story.

In December, I got picked up for drinking and driving. I blew a .10 on the field and a .09 at the police station. The courts go by what you blow at the station. The legal limit is .08 just to give you some context.

The charge got dropped to impaired driving. I was sentenced to 6 months non reporting probation, 40 hours of community service, impaired driving classes, and of course the fines. Everything was done by the middle of April, but I was still on probation.

I started attending meetings before my sentencing because I had assumed that the judge would make me do it anyway, however that wasn’t the case.

But I still went. And I made friends. Friends with good people. That was nice.

I even had a sponsor. This got me through.

However, for the last couple of months I didn’t have a sponsor. My former sponsor suggested that I find an additional sponsor because she couldn’t give me the time I deserved. I was a little hurt by that. But I understood. She’s a body builder with kids and a husband. She’s doing what she loves and taking care of her family. She was busy, I get that.

These last few weeks have been emotional. I was conflicted. The “I’m not an alcoholic” thought kept popping into my head. I started detaching from meetings, from my friends, even this blog. I felt that I didn’t belong. I don’t even remember the last time I picked my bible up.

I didn’t have the “I lost my kids, my spouse, my house, my car.” story. I didn’t really lose anything. But I know I couldn’t stop drinking. Once I had one I became so fixated on having more. My stepmom even warned me before I turned 21.

Eventually, I started believing those thoughts. And one of my friends picked up on it. He sensed there was something wrong and I couldn’t bullshit him. Excuse my language.

I let myself believe that I wasn’t an alcoholic because I didn’t have the typical alcoholic story. I woke up this morning and I knew exactly what I was going to get to drink on Monday.

I went to two meetings tonight. And when I went to the second meeting, that’s when God showed up. I was honest with myself. I shared what was going on with me. How I didn’t see the point, how I didn’t lose anything nor had anything to lose. One guy interrupted me and that was the final straw. I walked out.

I got up, and I walked out.

After having a conversation with someone else, that’s when I realized that I had become so fixated on not having the typical alcoholic story. What other people have gone through is what can happen to me if I start drinking again. I know that if I do start drinking again,  I won’t be able to stop. I proved that to myself time and time again before I got the DUI in December.

It wasn’t until then that something clicked again. That was my reset button. I drank because I was lonely. Yet the void was only being temporarily filled. It was nothing permanent, it will never be permanent. Sure you feel great, temporarily. But the morning after sucks. It will always suck.

I’m still not sure on how to cope with the loneliness. I could be with friends and still feel lonely. I guess that’s something God will reveal to me when he’s ready. I guess that’s something I’ll have to pray about.

After today, I feel like I’m back at square 1. I feel like I’m starting over. Like I’m starting fresh. I’m not even sure if the last 3 months of my sobriety should count because I was on probation. And probation was the reason why I stayed sober. When Monday comes, I’ll deal with it then.

But today I have a choice. I can drink, or I can not drink. One path leads to destruction, the other leads to happiness and fulfilling my destiny. Which path do I want to take?

My name is Kaitlin, and I am an alcoholic.

Photo by Claudia Soraya on Unsplash

The Thing Beneath The Thing

Today, for the first time in a few months, I went to church. I’m glad I did. I had a breakdown Friday night while I was with friends. I felt like I didn’t belong, that nobody cared, and that I wasn’t good enough.

Today, the pastor talked about just that and he called it “The Thing Beneath the Thing” and he used a pretty awesome metaphor to describe it.

The big thing right now is potholes. They’re everywhere and some of these potholes are turning into major sinkholes causing accidents, and even fatalities all across America. Construction companies are just re-patching them and re-paving them but the problem lies within underground pipes that are leaking which is what causes these potholes that are turning into sinkholes. He did an extensive amount of research on it.

Re patching and re-paving are only a temporary fix to a recurring problem. He used this metaphor to compare it with grace. We sprinkle a little grace on whatever is going on in our lives and call it a day. But sometimes we have to dig deeper. We have to figure out the thing beneath the thing. Once we do that, we can properly fix our “potholes” so they don’t turn into major “sinkholes.”

I wish I could say that every Christian turns to God whenever things get rough. When depression hits, when we’ve taken prescription pills or blow through a fifth a night. But reality is we don’t. We get so hung up on being sad all the time that we don’t want to lean into God and trust his word. And if you say you do, if you lean into God EVERY time  something goes wrong in your life, then you’re lying.

Sometimes, we become addicted to the sadness. Sometimes, we can’t just let go and let God.

I’ve been a walking zombie for the last couple months. I haven’t picked up my bible. I know I should, I know I should lean into His word more, but I’ve become addicted to the sadness. I’ve learned what co-dependency is and realized that I am very co-dependent. With that, I have identified my “pothole” and can properly fix it.

He wants us to lean into him when we get sad or upset. He wants us to lean into Him when we have hit a pothole in our lives, but it’s hard. Sometimes it’s easier said than done.

The pastor then started talking about Peter, and I could relate. Peter sometimes did what God wanted him to do, and other times he didn’t. Why? I don’t know. I haven’t read 1 Peter just yet, but when I do, I’m sure I can figure it out.

In 1 Peter 5:7 it flat out says what we should do. “Casting all your anxieties on Him, because he cares for you.”

When Adam and Eve took a bite of the forbidden apple their initial reaction was to literally hide from God. They were ashamed, they felt guilty.

We are hiding behind the real reason why we feel the way that we feel. Everyday events trigger us, igniting a fight or flight response and I can’t speak to you, but when that kicks in I immediately go into flight. I’ve learned how to manage it better, but I haven’t been able to overcome going into flight mode. That’s something only God can do. I am hiding from the thing beneath the thing and I can’t hide forever.

 

Photo by Marc-Olivier Jodoin on Unsplash

No Strings Attached

No, I don’t mean this as a friends with benefits definition.

What I mean by no strings attached is that I’m free. I’ve spent so much time focusing on settling down, getting married, and popping out a couple of kids and worrying over if it might not happen for me.

It’s been different, it feels great!

I’m doing my own thing, at my own pace. I’m living my life how I want to. If I don’t feel like going out, I can stay in. If I don’t feel like staying in, I can go out. I don’t have any commitments or responsibilities to another person. I don’t have another person breathing down my back and it feels amazing.

Today, I went to pick a friend up. Then we went and hung out at the pool, the mall, we grabbed a bite to eat and her boyfriend joined us, then we went to go see this band in the local park.

It was great. They announced they were going to play Sinatra, and I knew the song and I shout out (it was an unintentionally loud shout) “I LOVE THIS” and I’m pretty sure the entire city of Plymouth heard me because several audience members behind me heard me and laughed a bit. Great times. #I’mawkward.

Anyway, it was a genuinely great day. Again, no expectations. I was free. I am free. I love my freedom and I’m not sure if I want to give that up just yet. I’m just now learning how to embrace being young, being the best person I can possibly be, and enjoying my time now.

My time is now.

I started writing poetry/spoken word again, and that feels great. I have missed writing. I might even go to an open mic some time and perform my stuff.

It’s days like today that keep me going. That keep me pushing. I am able to do literally whatever I want. As long as it’s legal, of course.

I’ve wasted so much time already because it took me 21 years to figure this out. But that’s okay because I’m still young. I still learned this before it was too late. I still have time to figure me out, but reality is, I will never figure me out entirely.

Does anybody figure out who they are entirely?

Photo by Maurice Schalker on Unsplash

Let’s Talk Cedar Point!

Last blog post I left y’all off with me quitting my job and not missing my brothers graduation and me going to cedar point last Tuesday.

I did. I rode rides like I didn’t believe I would.

I started with the millennium force, steel vengeance, and the magnum. I could have ridden more, I just don’t remember everything I rode. My eyes were closed for just about all of it and I’m gripping onto the safety bars, it wasn’t until I rode the magnum that I really opened my eyes and flew my hands into the air.

I want to talk about one particular ride-Steel Vengeance. I almost had a panic attack on that one. The drop, the twists, and the turns. Not my thing. Halfway through I was about ready to scream I want off, I want off. I didn’t though.

By the time I got off, I was a bit shaken up, but I overcame it.

I may not have completely gotten over my fear of heights and things, but I feel like I’ve reached a point where I can tell myself that I will be okay.

And I will be okay.

Whatever life throws at me, I can take. Whatever life throws at me I’ll hit it back to life so hard that she’ll need to have surgery.

Ever since that trip to Cedar Point, life has been different. I can’t really describe it. I’ve been more confident, more productive, just a new found freedom that was a result from letting my fears go and trusting God.

For example: I am not stressing about work anymore. I can do things in my free time and actually want to do them because I’m not stressing so much. Yesterday, I got off work at 8:30 at night and I went to the car wash and cleaned my car out. Then I had dinner with a friend, went to a meeting, and came home. I cleaned my room. And I don’t mean picking up dirty clothes and putting the clean clothes away. I mean emptying out my dresser drawers, re-folding everything, and putting them away in an organized fashion.

Going through my “junk drawers” and pitching things I don’t need, and organizing what I do need. Re-hanging pictures. It’s great!

Today, I woke up and did laundry because I need a work uniform by 4:30 pm so I can be at work by 5.

Life is like a roller coaster. It has it’s ups, it’s downs, its turns, and its twist. but somehow, someway, by the grace of God, we all turn out to be okay.