Updated: Apr 13, 2020
Hello my name is Tracy and this is my story. I believe my addiction started with codependency and an alcoholic family at a very young age. I was raised in an alcoholic home where the step dad’s who were alcoholic were not the problem while I was growing up, but rather my mother's reaction to them. My mom had her own issues with alcohol which I did not notice until I was a young teen.
Growing up feeling unwanted and unloved were breeding grounds for my codependency and my need to find comfort somewhere else. I had a lot of trauma while growing up to work through on my own as I lost a baby brother who was seven months old when he died a day after my own birthday. I was 13 years old and my mother blamed me for his death. My baby brother's funeral was the first time I remember getting drunk. From day one at the age of thirteen I drank alcoholically. I never tried to control my drinking as it was always a way to escape.
After ten years of drinking and drugging I ended up homeless, helpless and desperate and got sober for the first time at the age of twenty three.
I found a recovery program and felt like I fit in there because the message I heard was you can do anything you want as long as you're willing to pay the price. I stayed sober for twenty one years and during that time I had two marriages, two children and I got really involved in 12 step recovery programs.
I was participating in recovery conventions, softball, dances and the young peoples group. This kept me going and kept me sober, but even in sobriety I made some really bad choices that were selfish and I wasn't really working on the solution I just wasn't drinking and using anymore.
After twenty one years of being clean and sober one day I decided it was a good idea to drink again. I ended up throwing my sobriety away and went out drinking for seven months and it was pure hell. My daughter was taken away from me by her father and my whole world came crashing down around me, I was rocked.
I got physically ill and ended up in the hospital and then I got clean and sober again for the second time.This time I went to women's meetings and did whatever I could to go to any lengths to stay sober. It took two years of hard work before my daughter could visit me which was very heartbreaking. During these times alone in recovery I would pick relationships with men that were very destructive. I followed my old patterns of choosing men who were unattainable and narcissistic because that is what I was used to and that is what I had always done.
I stayed sober for eight years that time and then I met a man in recovery who had been sober for ten years and the two of us decided it would be a good idea to party together and drink again. Within only three days of picking up that first drink I was smoking crack, something I had never previously done before and that lifestyle carried on for three years.
This was the most destructive, abusive, self-loathing, and self harmful relationship I had ever been in and it was also the last relationship I had. I ended up leaving that guy that I threw away eight years of my sobriety with and continued drinking and drugging. I was in a downward spiral of alcoholism and addiction.
I ended up leaving that man and carried on in my addiction. Eventually one day I was coming down from a big bender of drinking and drugging that landed me in the hospital to detox again. During the first couple days of detox the Doctors noticed that according to my test results, there was something even more seriously wrong with me than my addiction.
There was a long period of at least a year before the doctors finally diagnosed me with Primary Biliary Cholangitis, a liver disease that it turns out I had been born with and was unaware of.
The last drink I had was August 15th 2014, which was the day I entered my last detox in the hospital. I found out during that time in the hospital and going through all of those tests that my 56 year old sister had died the same day I entered detox from her Body Image Distortion Illness something she had suffered with all of her life.
I have maintained my sobriety since that last drink in August 2014. I am lucky to be alive and I am a miracle against all odds as the Doctors told me I would only live for another six months if I was lucky with my lung disease.
This time around in my recovery journey I am working on the solution in a deeper way than just not drinking and using. I read the big book, I go to meetings, I work with other alcoholics, I continue to work on the steps. I do everything possible to help heal my own heart.
I am grateful for my sobriety. I am grateful for my children and our now recovered healthy relationship. We talk at least once a week and my children could not be prouder of their mother. They support my lifestyle, they accept and love me for who I am past and present. They know about their moms journey in recovery and they support me.
I am very grateful that God has placed me here in my new home in Mexico where there is great recovery and fellowship.There are wonderful 12 step programs here in English and an amazing Codependency group that I feel a part of. I continue to work on loving myself and healing my own heart from the inside out.
The two pictures included here are one of me clean and sober and the other one is when I was 17 years old and I was Not sober. I was already a black out drinker in that picture and my alcoholism was in full swing.