Well, I have to be honest, I never thought I would see the age of 28, which is why reaching 29, and sober nonetheless, is that much more of a milestone for me. I suppose that even at a younger age I anticipated my recklessness would be my demise.
-and it very well almost was.
I ignored so many warning signs for so long that it’s hard to even remember each and every one. I shrugged off the pleas of the people who loved me most who could no longer watch me kill myself, slowly. Soon, I began to justify my drinking in the guise that it is socially accepted, i.e. the ‘wine culture’.
In the days and weeks leading up to my birthday this year, I vacillated between dread and gratitude.
Dread for the fact that, at almost 30 I’m still in the infancy of restarting my life. You can’t imagine the shame that accompanies the worry, as my friends and peers go on to have families and careers and I am still here just barely managing to have picked up all the pieces worth saving.
The dread, though, is quickly replaced by gratitude, and for the exact same reasons really.
My journey could have ended April 2017, and my friends and peers would still have gone on to live their lives. So, I feel an enormous sense of gratitude that I get to be here to witness these monumental life moments for my closest friends and family.
I will be forever grateful for this time that I’ve been given, because it was almost ripped from me. Albeit, through my own fault, but ripped nonetheless.
I feel so grateful for this chance at the life I truly want, and while it feels bittersweet in the form of a 29th birthday, it’s very much the best gift I could have ever received.