No Hangover Club: Brandi Meier
When I was drinking, I was an absolute tyrant, to say the least.
I got to a place in my life, a lot of people have termed, “the jumping off point.” Physically, my body was completely shutting down. Mentally, I was exhausted and unstable, and I was facing deep legal issues.
In the midst, I had a moment of clarity. I knew it would take an absolute miracle for me to live. I had bargained with God plenty, so I had accepted my grim fate. I truly thought, my life would be ending soon.
Overtaken by events, the next week, I was placed in a drug induced coma. I remained there hand cuffed to a hospital bed for ten days.
The short of it was, if I were to wake up (which was not a guarantee) there could be massive rehabilitation involved. Remarkably, I did wake up! And was able to walk and talk.
Shortly after, I went to jail, and from there, I legitimately relearned how to live life - on life’s terms. I was mandated to strict probation, constant monitoring, classes and therapy. All of which were things I had done in the past, but this time...it was different.
I knew, I could never go back to the shell of a life I had before.
Since that time (nearly 5 years ago) I have learned an immeasurable amount! Absolute misconceptions about addiction, recovery and life in general.
My recovery is mine, and solely mine. I, of course allow others to to help shape it. I have a sponsor, and a best friend who is also in recovery. I am blessed to have a supportive family, and boyfriend. I’ve also been able to connect with an amazing community of friends online.
I am wildly open about my journey, and the struggles of my past. A few times, I have become subject to criticism because I still choose to work in the industry.
I bartend and do promotional work. I personally, have found that the obsession I once had with alcohol, has been removed. I know for me, I can never safely drink, but ultimately I’m not the fun police or responsible for others who choose to drink and enjoy my work.
I have found so many things more enjoyable because I am able to be fully present. Concerts, weddings, bachelorette parties, vacations...nearly all of the seemingly monumental events I once feared doing in recovery - I’ve done. Clean and sober!
I remember what it felt like experiencing social settings when I first got sober, it was uncomfortable! Like, reallly uncomfortable. But it’s temporary.
And, the feeling you get once you’ve gone to a bbq, birthday party, or brunch without picking up a drink?EMPOWERED!
My advice to anyone that is having concerns as to what their life will look like after they quit drinking, is to is to ask yourself what part of drinking truly enhances the enjoyment?
Initially, I thought it helped to ease the anxiety. It made it “easier” to express myself. It was “fun.”
I tend to over look the disparity, destruction and shame. Looking back, I was hiding, from others, ultimately from myself.
Standing in my truth, in my authentic self now is so much more powerful.