"After I became a mother, the media told me that I should use alcohol whenever I needed to relax. It was the cure for a bad day, a fussy baby, or at the end of a long week. I felt different after I had my son. I started to notice that I was much more sensitive to alcohol and it didn't take much for me to feel the effects."
“Hello! My name is Blair. I'm a wife to an amazing man, a mother to a beautiful 2 year old boy, and I'm living alcohol-free and happy in Minnesota.
I'll be one year without alcohol on February 24, 2019! The decision to cut alcohol out of my life was long overdue and I’m so glad I finally made it. If nothing else cool ever happens to me, I'm content. I’m happy with where I’m at, and I'm so proud of who I’ve become. Deciding to say goodbye to alcohol is the bravest thing I've ever done.
I didn’t drink much in high school, being in sports helped with that - but I did drink. There were several times when I drank too much, and now as I look back I can see the lack of control I had, even then. When I got to college I went into full party mode. I was the typical party girl, the one who hosted the parties, and when I wasn’t hosting them, I knew where they were. I was someone people wanted to be around. I was the life of the party. Alcohol allowed me to let loose, and be care-free. Binge drinking was normal for my friends and I, and our lives revolved around it. I had a blast in my early twenties, and alcohol never seemed to be an issue for me. I made a lot of friends, many that I still have today. We all have the same crazy stories. If you told me I could redo those years, I wouldn’t. I did what everyone else was doing, and I had a lot of fun.
Up until I got pregnant with my son at age 29, I was still drinking pretty regularly with friends. We drank on the weekends, and I was still enjoying myself while doing it. When we got together, alcohol was always there too. I never planned to have as many as I did, and most of us didn’t. Once in a while things would get out of hand, but that was still “normal” in my eyes – everyone had bad nights, right?
After I became a mother, the media told me that I should use alcohol whenever I needed to relax. It was the cure for a bad day, a fussy baby, or at the end of a long week. I felt different after I had my son. I started to notice that I was much more sensitive to alcohol and it didn't take much for me to feel the effects. I still had a hard time stopping after only a few. For some reason my brain couldn’t stop me when it was supposed to. I wondered why other people could control how much they drank, and why I couldn’t be a “social drinker.” Why couldn’t I have a glass of wine with dinner or appreciate a craft beer? When my son was 2 months old, my father passed away unexpectedly. As time went on, the hangovers became worse. I lacked energy and I always had regret for days after drinking. I was grumpy, tired, and I needed a change.
I made the decision to cut alcohol out of my life when my son was 18 months old. I never knew what real joy was until now. I have an appreciation for what life is really about. I’ve learned to not take life for granted. Sometimes I stop and think about how lucky I am to be able to feel this way. I wish everyone could. I’m only human, so I have bad days too! But, I have found healthy ways to deal with those days. I've become a huge advocate for self-care, and mental health awareness. I work in the Psychology field at one of the leading healthcare facilities in the world. I have been trying to be more aware of what stresses me out and how to cope with the stress when that time comes. What works for me, won’t work for everyone. I have been enjoying books, podcasts, baths, TV shows, walks, stretching/yoga, and meditation. I've also met a lot of new friends through social media. I never knew there were so many other women out there like me!
Being a non-drinker today is hard. Not to mention being a woman and mother who doesn't drink. From the outside, it seems simple, just don't drink...right? It's not. I can't go a day without seeing or hearing something about alcohol. It's pretty annoying. There's an endless amount of memes, hashtags, t-shirts, and blogs out there. They all celebrate alcohol, the “mommy-wine” culture, and binge drinking. It’s hard to ignore the alcohol marketing but I can only do what I know is best for myself and my family. And that, I’ve already done.
Now that I’ve hit my one-year mark, I am going to get involved with my community and continue to work on my self-care. Many of us have the same story. If there is one person who can relate to my story, and know that they aren't alone, I'll be glad I was able to help. Remember, if this is your story, the ending can be yours too.”