#003 Reflect, Evolve + Elevate

I haven't sat down to write on here in a while. My main outlet has been my Instagram page (most of you reading this would have come from there), but even with that it can be limited once you hit the maximum letters permitted in a caption. It seemed fitting to switch platforms and pen a lengthy note for those up for a bit of reading.

The two posts below give a brief insight of where I was 8 months ago, lost yet hopeful, and battling manipulative thoughts that were urging me to pick up booze again. At 6 months sober a part of me was still wrestling with the idea of drinking 'just once more' and it's taken some fucking work to come to a point of pure comfort with the idea of eternal sobriety. Now with just over a year under my belt, thoughts about drinking don't haunt me anymore nor do I wish to be a 'normal' drinker, but with this being said I'm familiar with the dangers of complacency and I remain fully aware that self-work never stops, recovery included.

In many ways I am still the same soul but boy this human experience of mine has taken a turn. My thirst for spiritual freedom has led me on an arduous but rewarding journey. The creativity I wanted to unearth has been spouting out of me in so many ways and I owe that to finally letting myself BE.

Each time I put my mind to something, the default of my brain is to provide me with a list of invalid reasons and excuses as to why I shouldn't see it through (under the pretense of protection), but that's exactly what I've been fighting against for the past year with all my might and I can assure you, persistence and self-belief make all the difference! I feel warmth in my heart when I read back words that I wrote whilst going through moments of uncertainty because it cements the fact that things do get better, regardless of what you might believe at the time.

Unfamiliar habits have become a new normal, old habits are now dust in the desert of my past, a concept I never thought possible.

Change is the only constant in life and since I last wrote on this blog my relationship of 3 years ended, I moved back in with my family, I started a new job, I started a business, I celebrated one year of sobriety (and got a 'Teetotal' tattoo to mark the occasion), friendships ended, new friendships were made, I had my sexual awakening, I learnt what loving hard means, I lost, I cried etc, but I continue to learn from these experiences and welcome any situation that can assist me in being a stronger individual. My sobriety in particular remains one of my proudest achievements and a life purpose of mine is to keep the conversation surrounding it going. I credit a big part of my self-development to recovery because without it, I wouldn't be any closer to the person I aspire to be. 

This cathartic process of reflecting and documenting my quest as I plod along means a lot to me, I also do what I do in the hope that I can help someone out there know that they have a say in how their life goes. It's never too late to make alterations and whether you realise it or not, each passing moment the Universe hands you choices that can motivate you to do better and stay the course (despite setbacks), or you manifest choices that will keep you stagnant for as long as you allow. We don't always take advantage of the former options because our comfort zone loves to keep us all to itself, wrapped up nice and warm in a cosy mental prison.

"What you focus on, you create more of"

My tendencies to postpone and delay were a defining part of my identity for a very long time and it did me no good, I had to cut the shit. The only thing that works for me is to execute instantly and not wait for a specific time set by society or until I'm 'ready'. The band-aid must come off once the itching starts. This year I don't have any outlandish resolutions, everything I want to get done I started putting into motion well over 23 days ago. I've been setting my intentions for the past 12 months and beyond. By continuously educating myself, raising my frequency, living my truth, sharpening my self-awareness and staying connected to Universal Energy, I will surely succeed.

If there's anything I want to execute this year and yonder, it's to keep challenging my mindset and set out to be my own inspiration!




#002 High 'n' most definitely dry

"At times I feel like I have lost my personality but I know that's a lie. What was my personality anyway? I have spent so much time with my drunk/high self that the thought of staying sober forever scares me. How ridiculous is that? Being the truest me scares me? To this day I am relearning what it means to be me...I have no fucking clue who I am, and I don't mean my name or where I come from... who I really am" - I wrote that early February, 3 months into recovery. 

"I'll be going on a trip soon and I've been having thoughts about drinking again, I'm trying to keep them as just that...thoughts. I'm on the way to work right now and I have this tightness in my chest, a lethal mix of anxiety and panic. I'm thinking about how nice it would be to have a glass of white wine, fully relax, and maybe lose control, just once. I won't bring the drinking back to London with me, I promise. I definitely said that last year but it followed me back with a vengeance. I know what will happen if I so much as put a drop past my lips, what always happens, I won't be able to stop. I might even succeed in having just one, but then tomorrow I might have two, the next day three won't hurt right? I know I'm stronger than these cheating idealisations. Maybe I was never really that bad?"- I wrote this last week sometime.

When I read both those paragraphs back I realise how much growth I have experienced in the last 6 months but I also realise just how difficult it is to completely change your way of thinking. Although those words are in the past I'm still familiar with those feelings even to this day, they come around every so often, sometimes so strong I feel this insane tension build inside me. The illusion of being in control creeps up on you like a motherfucker! That voice that tells you it's been long enough, you can now drink/use 'safely' again. Is there even such a thing? Does safe drinking/using exist? That seductive inner saboteur pounces on you when you least expect it, everything it says seems logical and well thought out and reasonable, but it's all to assist you in failing. When we let our thoughts win they become reality, and my goodness, I have come too fucking far to let a temporary fix become a long term consequence. I signed up for a harsh reality and more discomfort than I could ever have imagined, all in the name of freedom. It has been such a painful process, but it's just that. A process. It will take time, there's no overnight fix, it is a journey of ups and inevitable downs and I have a bloody long way to go. Through all this its a must that I remain aware that I am injecting something beautiful back into my life. Clarity. 

When I was buzzed or drunk, I felt more desirable, sociable, wittier....more 'me'. The ritual of drinking itself was also something that sparkled in my eyes. The moment of bonding when someone offers you a drink and you accept or hands you one without you even having to ask, the 'deep' transparent conversations after a bottle or few or other party favours, the declarations of love and compliments in abundance. Feeding the myth that you need to have alcohol/drugs in your system or in your hand to get a conversation going. Fast forward to the present day, to then have to readjust and remove all those beliefs, to remove the habits I've carelessly acquired over a very long period of time, and replace them with new ones. It can be so daunting, but I've made it my goal to normalise this new way of living, one day at a time. 

I truly believe that the concept of 'one day at a time' applies to so much more than just alcohol abuse/drug addiction etc. To me it means taking the little steps necessary in taking control of your life. Those little moments of staying power add up to something wonderful! Just get through those first uncomfortable 24 hrs and you've already mastered something great. The trouble is that we assume tomorrow is promised to us so we tend to postpone things and avoid taking the first steps, but you only have this moment, right now, today! However many words we speak and the things we say we are going to do, it's no use if there is no action to follow it. Life-changes will make you feel discomfort, awkwardness and even pain, but on the other side of that lies the gifts of perseverance. 

Today I am 6 months sober (6 fucking months! how did this happen, I am so thankful honestly) so I wanted to check back in and share my story thus far, I also wanted to make it clear that this is hard work! Some people assume its easy but that's because we work so hard to make it look easy. Please remember social media is a fickle place where we mainly share our ups and success stories and not enough of our downs and cries for help (although I always try to document my experience as accurately as possible on my sobriety instagram). I've cried till I couldn't cry anymore, I've hated myself for having this 'abnormal' issue, I've fallen into deep depression many times, I've nearly relapsed, and have ended up turning to therapy to get help with some underlying issues that have floated to the surface since I gave up drinking. All the scary stuff aside, it's undoubtedly been the most beautiful, rewarding 6 months of my entire life. I've never felt more alive + present. I have GOT SHIT DONE and got in touch with my spiritual side a lot more, which is another path I've always been drawn to. In all this, I have simultaneously become a better daughter, sister, girlfriend, friend and generally a better human being. 

I was reading something the other day that reminded me that there are over 7 billion of us inside a tiny tiny tiny marble floating in infinite space with no definite idea of where we will ultimately end up. Yet we spend most of our time worrying about what other people think, and living to please everyone else but our true selves. We spend our lives trying to control what's on the outside instead of coming face to face with what's going on inside ourselves. This life can be so beautiful if we open our eyes to the wonders we have access to, it might sound cheesy but that's as real as it gets, take from that what you will. This isn't limited to travelling and seeing the world with your eyes, or having a lot of money so you can afford all the material things you've ever wanted. True sight is understanding who you really are, feeling your surroundings (wherever you are) and accepting that this life is not forever, being at peace with the knowledge that life as you know it could end at any moment. If you are reading this please know how much privilege you and I have to be where we are today. Make your mark, whatever that might be! Mine starts with freeing my soul of the external things of this world that I confused as being the true me, one day at a time!



                             A - Ben's apartment, Madrid - May 2016

                            A - Ben's apartment, Madrid - May 2016

#001 Creation

Every action requires that first step, for me this is just one of many to come. For a long time I've found myself feeling discontented and constantly dissatisfied, unable to understand why I behaved or reacted the way I do, baffled by my own being. These confusions are part of a bigger picture which I will soon paint, but bottom line is, today I choose to embrace the woman I am becoming, I choose to nurture and value the vulnerable girl inside. I made the decision to take charge of my existence, to live a full life with no vapid interruptions. I am nowhere near perfection nor seeking it, I am simply looking to attain personal freedom. 

I have always found comfort in writing, art, and everything music. As I got older I gradually shelved all those things, deciding it best not to give myself a title or commit to anything (enter commitment issues #2), this was all driven by fear and low self-esteem, disguised as protection from failure. I started to find false comfort and confidence in other things, mainly vices that deterred me even further. The realisation that none of these temporary joys were serving me, brings me here.

I want to unearth the creative girl I once knew. I want to track my journey through this life, and collect all evidence, of which I will share with those open to receiving.