In many ways, I have been battling mental illness for 25 years now. It has only been during the past 7 years that I was aware of it. Before that, I drank alcohol to cope. A lot of alcohol. I am glad that that time is behind me.
On September 30th, I will have 7 years clean. Not a small feat, by any means. But for 7 years, I’ve avoided (abstained) from any alcohol consumption. In reality, it is because I know that I can not handle drinking. I can not do it responsibly in the long run… I will always want more and more to drink.
For me, finally quitting was brought about by a moment of clarity. Did I want to continue with the same old same old… the hangovers, the blackouts, the regrets? I decided I was finished and it was the best decision I ever made.
It has not been an easy road. I have had to deal with (everything) by not drinking the past seven years. I don’t have the luxury of a beer to take the edge off. I have to deal with life, on life’s terms… and hope for the best. It’s been a journey these past seven years, and it’s a journey that I do not regret.