Sober Story: Molly

Wednesday 19 Apr, 2017, 7:35am by Mrs D 29 comments

Today’s Sober Story comes from Molly, a 56-year-old living in the USA.

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Mrs D: How long have you been sober?

Molly: My recovery date is April 6, 2014.

Mrs D: What was your life like before you quit?

Molly: On April 5, 2013 I worked my usual 12 hour hospital shift, never dreaming that it would be the last day of my career. I should have appreciated more, listened more carefully. It was my very last day of hearing most sounds. My granddaughter’s babble, my husband’s heartbeat would all soon be just a memory. I was not scheduled to work the next few days so I most likely had a few glasses of wine that night, which was the usual, drink to relax at the end of the work week. I came from a family riddled with alcoholics and I was always very careful, very aware of the risks. I used alcohol moderately to relax and to help overcome crippling social shyness. On April 6, 2013 I awoke and could not hear. It is impossible to describe the terror, the anguish. My hero Helen Keller describes it best, “Blindness separates people from things; Deafness separates people from people”. The next weeks brought visits with specialists near and far, painful treatments which gained no improvement. Fitted for hearing aids to help regain balance, some sounds get through, pots and pan noises only, no voices, no music, no tinkles of laughter. Isolation quickly set in, my world became smaller and smaller. My alcohol moderation function completely quit. Drink, drink, drink, hiding it all quietly in my home alone days. I was shocked to see a calendar and realise twelve horrible months had passed. I had pushed the pause button on my life. Shaky, red faced, exhausted, unhealthy, I had built myself a very dark place. I knew in my heart I would never learn to really live again if I continued to drink.

Mrs D: So you just stopped?

Molly: On April 6, 2014 I stopped drinking. I saw the calendar that morning and realised a full year had passed. I was stuck in a boozy hell. Frightened, guilty, and confused. How had I let this happen?

Mrs D: That’s so strong and admirable of you to just act like that. Bravo. How did it go?

Molly: I confessed all to my husband, no judgement, my champion showed only love and concern. He so wanted to fix this for me but of course couldn’t. Each day seemed to last a lifetime. Searching for help, praying, knowing that I couldn’t communicate face to face, so no possibility of AA, or face to face meetings. I miraculously came upon some on-line sober blogs. Like a healing rain, their words drowned me in hope, adding a salve and clean white bandage to my wounded soul. They were my lifeline, my salvation, their words saved me. Within a few months a new site Living Sober was created by the brave and kind Mrs. D/Lotta Dann. This group has become my circle of strength, they get it, they understand. I suddenly was not alone.

Mrs D: So glad you found us! How did your friends and families respond to you quitting?

Molly: Not much of a reaction at all. I had been way too successful in hiding my drinking. I still get the odd comment or two…”still not drinking???” I always try to respond positively, “nope, quite happy without it”.

Mrs D: Have you ever relapsed?

Molly: No relapse, I think this is due to my ongoing daily check in with this site. Living sober helps me each and every day.

Mrs D: How long did it take for you to feel recovered both physically and emotionally?

Molly: Physically, I feel that I was healed by about nine months. Just slowly felt better and began to look and feel healthier. Emotionally it’s still a bit of a process for me. Mostly due to the deafness, it really mucks up the healing process.

Mrs D: I bet. What about going out and socialising when not drinking, how is this for you?

Molly: Again, this is a bit of a challenge for me, I used to drink prior to socialising due to being very, very, shy. Deafness has made this a much bigger handicap. Being sober is better for me. I can concentrate on speech reading in a quiet corner of a party, I have found that I am now a magnet to other introverts!

Mrs D: Oh that’s rather lovely. Was there anything surprising you discovered about yourself after quitting drinking?

Molly: Two main finds, the first, I still love to learn! My husband and I have learned sign language and I am learning speech/lip reading
(although the words naked and bacon still look the same to me…funny story there!). I have also found that although I am no longer healing people with my medical skills, I can still help to heal with kindness. Encouraging others who are getting sober is a great source of comfort to me!

Mrs D: How has your life changed?

Molly: I am again laughing each day, finding delight in expanding my world. Looking back at my wasted year with Kindsight instead of Hindsight, instead of saying “what was I thinking?”, change it instead to, “what was I learning”? I have learned that you can’t recover or grieve while drunk. By not drinking you create a life where alcohol does not appeal. My world is still quiet, but no longer dark.

Mrs D: Would you do anything differently given the chance to go over it again?

Molly: I think my drinking was a mask. A mask to hide severe pain and anxiety. I do wish I had stopped sooner, but I think that is almost universal amongst us!

Mrs D: Any advice for the newly sober?

Molly: If you have recently stopped drinking or are thinking about becoming alcohol free, please check in the Members Feed section of Living Sober each day. There is a member here dealing with the same hope, fear, longing, dread, or joy. Together we can help each other build a brighter, healthier, happier future. One last note, a favourite quote from St. Francis, “Start by doing what is necessary, then do what is possible, and suddenly you are doing the impossible.”

29 comments

  1. Ha why the bloody hell I not read this before????? It was cool to read bout you QD. You have honestly been 1 huge support person for me and I thank you from the bottom of my heart. Fatbum and I thank you for your honesty and lover xo♡

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  2. How did I miss this? What a special special woman you are. You have so much to give, even though you might feel so limited. We love having you here so much QD.
    Thank you always for being lovely you xo

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  3. Molly, Your story is so humbling. You are one very strong lady. I always think the actual drinking to excess part of our disease must be so much harder for the ladies among us. All my drinking was out in the open , I never hide my drink, but I did hide the money for it. Thanks for sharing your story Molly.

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  4. So beautiful @quietlydone, thank you for sharing your amazing story and your daily kind and wise supportive comments on here. Instead of retreating into a disconnected world you have chosen not just connection but to offer your great compassion. Thank you. So cute “quietly done”!!

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  5. I want you to know that you do help to heal people with your kindness. You are such a special person and you shine. Thank you for this story, wow. What you’ve been through, and how you’ve turned it into meaning. Thank you. xxx

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  6. Thank you so much for this QD, it helps us to know you even more than we know you now, with your gentle wisdom and kindness washing over us when we need it, like waves lapping onto the shore……Continuous, we can trust there will always be more. You are so appreciated here, and loved. The special quality I have always found in you, amongst many others, is your Grace. You are a truly lovely woman. Thank you for being here with us. xox

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  7. What a beautiful story and thank you so much for telling it, and so well. You have the ability to sense how another is feeling from our posts and comments and say just the right words that comfort and not shame, or judge. So many times I have read and re read your words and they hit me spot on.
    So proud of you and your life, you are a remarkable women. Thank you again. Love xo.

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  8. Hi Molly.QD.. I love your picture you are an amazing lady.. you inspire me so much and your support is wonderful… Loved your post it’s true we are all learning and I couldn’t grieve for my brother when I was drunk all the time.. Like you I find it so hard to talk face to face with people and struggled with AA.. but on here I can share very easily and I’m very grateful for all the support I get.. I check in everyday… lots of love to you Molly.xxxxxxx

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  9. Thank you for sharing your story @quietlydone. I lost my sense of smell and taste about 5 months ago. It also happened suddenly with doctors having no idea why. My loss affects my quality of life, but it does not create challenges when relating to others like the loss of hearing. I am curious how you doing with this loss. What has helped you? In addition, I think many of us drink to hide our anxiety and fear. Thank you for the wisdom you share. We are blessed to have your words and presence among us.

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  10. You are such an inspiration and a beautiful soul. Thankyou for all your support over the years, you have helped me a lot with your full of kindness posts. Xxx

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  11. Molly, you are still very much in the profession of healing people. You haved helped heal people with your hands, now you help heal people with your heart & soul through your wise words. Love to you! xoxo

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  12. Thankyou QD so much for sharing your story and for helping so many of us on this site with your kindness and your advice which is always down to earth and spot on. xxxx

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  13. Hi Molly! Thanks so much for sharing your inspiring story that speaks to your great strength. You wrote a comment on one of my posts recently about kindsight not hindsight, and I wasn’t sure what it meant. And here it is again, and I get it now, and it’s such a powerful idea – to look back on our past with kindness, rather than the usual negative and harsh perspective that I sometimes have. Thank-you for your kindness. xx

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  14. Thank you for sharing your story. I have many of your posts saved so I can return to your encouraging words. You are a gifted angel and so important to so many. I hope you feel all the love that is sent your way.

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  15. You are a wonderful woman. You may be deaf, but you are listening , and helping all of us with our problems.
    Thanks for all of your support to everyone over the last 3 years .

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  16. You are a courageous and inspirational woman Molly. And how right you are when you say you can still help to heal with kindness… your kind words have lifted me up many times over the past 15 months. Xx

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