So(Pro)

#66: Marnie Rae

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Name: Marnie Rae

Age: 50

Location: Seattle, WA

Sobriety date: 4/15/2003

Creative niche: Entrepreneurship, mocktails, writing

If applicable to your story, substance of choice:
Alcohol - Grey Goose Martinis (with 3 olives) and Black Russians to be more specific. Although a bottle of wine would do in a pinch.

nutshell

Recovery/sobriety story in a nutshell:

I started drinking as a teenager.

It progressively became the focus of my life, all of my friends drank (although most weren't addicted), every event was an excuse to drink. I thought I was having fun, we even laughed about the time I drank too much and ended up in the hospital. Somehow missed that burning bush :(

Finally, after 20 years of drinking, I had my 'rock bottom' moment. I attended an elementary school fundraising auction that I had been a big part of creating, got drunk with our friends before the event, snuck in alcohol at the event, made a fool of myself trying to converse with my children's teachers, and embarrassed someone I love very much - my husband (makes me cry to write this). I knew when I went to bed that night it was going to be the last time I drank (it was).

I had a friend that didn't drink, although I didn't know why. I walked right up to her the next day in the parking lot at school after dropping our kids off and asked her point blank why she didn't drink. I look back now and I have so much love for that scared young woman that was rude and awkward and desperate.

Thank God my friend had been in recovery for a long time and could see through the awkwardness. She told me she was in recovery, I told her I needed help. She took me to my first AA meeting - I am forever grateful for her and the people in those rooms. I did NOT finish all 12 steps and I'm okay with that. I'm sober, I'm happy, I am a work in progress, I do my best to be a good human, I'm okay with it.


Top 5 Recovery/Wellness Tools:

1) Grace

2) Gratitude

3) Writing

4) Time by myself

5) Fear
Fear isn't really a 'wellness' tool but honestly, the fear of going back to that life is one of the things that keeps me sober.


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Connect with Marnie Rae

website: www.marnierae.com
instagram:
@marnieraec
facebook:
@marnieraec

#65: Annie Grace

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Name: Annie Grace

Age: 40

Location: Evergreen, Colorado

Sobriety Date: 12/15/14

Creative niche: Writing

If applicable to your story, drug of choice:  Alcohol

Story in a nutshell:

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I was sitting at the train station deep under Heathrow airport in London. I'd been drinking vodka and O.J. before the taxi to the airport to take the edge off my awful hangover which was the result of a week of super late night drinks with colleagues. Returning to my husband and two young boys I realized that while they deserved the best of me I was, by drinking so heavily and staying out so late every work trip, giving them the worst of me. I wanted better and it hit me - that I had to find a way out of the alcohol maze.

I had tried to set rules (no wine until 5pm, or no drinking during the week) just to feel deprived and unhappy. Rules resulted in my obsessing about the next time I could drink, and instead of making alcohol less of an influencer in my life the rules made it more important, more powerful.

I knew I needed a way without rules. And in the tunnel that day I had a realization. That although I currently believed that alcohol was vital for enjoyment, relaxation and everything in between I didn't used to need alcohol to have fun or relax.

I formed this simple theory. That I consciously wanted to drink less (or nothing) the far more powerful subconscious part of my mind, the part subject to a lifetime of conditioning around the benefits of drinking, simply hadn't got the memo.

This launched me into a year's worth of research on how to undo a lifetime of subconscious conditioning around alcohol. I stopped trying to stop drinking and instead focused on learning. I created a list of every reason I drank, what all the 'benefits' were in my mind. I methodically went through every reason, looking for science-based external evidence into the validity of each. Once I'd gone through everything it was as if a fog had lifted. The beliefs that I needed alcohol to have a good time or relax just disappeared. I simply no longer wanted to drink! Talk about freedom.

I like to say that I drink as much as I want whenever I want; the truth is that I just haven’t wanted a drink in more than three years. I don't miss it, I don't think about it and I feel truly joyous and free!


Top 5 Recovery/Wellness Tools

1) Journaling

2) Eating lots of protein (to create essential amino acids!)

3) Exercise

4) Mindfulness

5) Online Communities - especially www.thisnakedmindcommunity.com


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Connect with Annie and This Naked Mind

website: www.thisnakedmind.com
website: www.thisnakedmindcommunity.com
website: www.alcoholexperiment.com
instagram: @thisnakedmind
twitter: @thisnakedmind
facebook: @thisnakedmind