Explore Sober Possibilities
The freedom to explore sober possibilities and choose what sober is for you may seem like a radical idea. But it’s simply finding your path by returning to the truth.
Following, I will share an example of how I enjoy sober freedom by focusing on how I want to experience life vs. whether or not I drink or use drugs. This keeps me from falling into the all-or-nothing trap of the recovery movement’s interpretation of sober and feeling as though all is lost should I have a lapse in judgment, exercise my free will, or experiment with modern practices to address pain.
As described in the bible and the original definition, sober is having a clear mind, open heart, and a defined intention. The bible references sober as not to be distracted from your purpose. Since many of us struggle with the whole “purpose” thing, I have found having a defined intention about where you’re going, how you’re growing, and who you want to be is essential in pursuing sober freedom. This allows your dreams, goals, and aspirations to direct your decisions instead of judgment.
ALL OR NOTHING
The all or nothing is one of the greatest weaknesses when transitioning from numbing emotional pain and mental anguish with substance to choosing to live sober.
Through the onset of the recovery movement, sober has been misattributed as abstinence and working the traditional twelve-step program, Buddha twelve steps, or yoga twelve steps; they have twelve steps for everything. Most addiction treatments are developed from the twelve-step model.
When you mention sober, this is often the black and white assumption.
However, by definition, sober is not abstinence but the qualities of how you live your life. Even better, your experience of life. If you’re interested in how and why this is my position, you can download and read through Sober Revolution, a little summary I created to collect my thoughts on the matter.
Look, I’m not interested in debating what sober is. I stand by the definition and how I live sober today and for the last eighteen years. I haven’t had a drink and have no interest in drinking, but I have had an edible.
The first time I ate an edible was by mistake. I had bought both varieties, CBD and CBD/THC. CBD has been invaluable in my transition from childbearing season to full-on liberation, a more meaningful way of saying menopause. CBD works great for hot flashes and anxiety. I also decided to buy a one-to-one, meaning one part THC and one part CBD, to help with terrible foot and leg pain.
I opened the container and ate half a gummy, and slowly realized I was no longer clear of mind. I was trying to track my thoughts and wasn’t fond of them dodging me. It didn’t take long to realize I had taken the wrong edible. I had full intention of trying the THC edible, just not while we were out and about. I wanted to be prepared for the experience, and I wouldn’t have bitten off more than I preferred of the gummy.
Don’t get me wrong. I wasn’t hallucinating. I was simply not clear of mind.
So, how did I even come to try the edible THC after SO many years?
By witnessing almost magical results.
PRESCRIPTION VS. EDIBLES
My mother was never able to find relief from her constant debilitating lower body pain from transverse myelitis. The doctors had put her on every prescribed narcotic. Methadone and morphine worked but were damaging in other ways, they tried “oxy” but every day we would need to increase quantity and frequency and they didn’t seem effective. In pure desperation, we tried CBD/THC one to one, and it helped significantly.
She took a minuscule amount of the CBD/THC, and it worked. It worked really well. She wasn’t high, and she was out of pain. It was a Godsend.
I had been struggling with foot and leg pain and was no longer able to walk more than a mile, and if I tried to run, I would be in pain for days after. Pain that disrupted my sleep.
If I could stop my feet from aching so, I could walk again and sleep again, that would be amazing. Since I don’t subscribe to sober is abstinence, and I especially don’t believe that there’s a monster disease inside me waiting to be invited in by using anything so it can take over, I had nothing to lose by trying it.
MY SOBRIETY IS SACRED
I want to be clear about this because I know there are many people who believe that sober is abstinence, and if you use anything, you lose your sobriety, and it is a gateway drug to your former drug of choice. This is the whole addiction is a monster inside of you, blah, blah, blah. If you believe that any drug is a gateway drug and that your addiction is a disease, and like a monster lying in wait, it will be true for you. Beliefs are powerful. I don’t believe it, and my sobriety is sacred and still very much intact.
Logic, science, my experience, and many I have worked with have debunked the above-mentioned theories.
With all that said are you wondering if it helped? I was so preoccupied with monitoring my thoughts, I suppose maybe. I tried it a few more times, and I’m not a big fan. I prefer being in my clear state of mind. I do continue to use CBD and prefer the tincture method of delivery vs. the gummy. The gummy makes me want more candy. Yum.
I used THC.
I am sober.
I learned that I prefer my clear mind.
I didn’t go running to get a beer (my drug of choice back in the day.)
My confidence and resolve to live sober have never been stronger.
I have no interest in drinking because I have a full life that I want to experience, and alcohol would distract me from my defined intentions. Maybe someday, but not today. I have never taken alcohol off the table or made it an enemy.
There is no monster.
I don’t live my life counting the days I don’t drink or use. I make my days count.
Sober freedom is experiencing and experimenting with life with a defined intention of who you wish to be. The modern use of the word to mean abstinence puts unnecessary pressure on people. So, instead, focus on the life you want to experience instead of living up to the expectations of others.
If your drinking is getting in the way of you living the life you want or becoming the woman of your dreams, then shift your focus from drinking to daydreaming and doing. That is sober freedom!
If you need help and would like an empathetic, experienced guide on your journey to explore and prioritize what matters most, identify meaning, gain clarity, and discover what makes you feel the most alive, contact me. Let’s talk!