The guru syndrome

This is a brilliant piece by a very cool blogger:

I’ve seen this happen and also been there. I’m seeing this more and more on *social media too, the newly sober snapping glamorous pics & dolling out therapy as if they’ve been sober for 20 years. This platform gives us addicts a way to ‘rebrand’ ourselves and its very tempting indeed. No more the hapless alcoholic now new and sparkly sexy and sober… We do need to clasp back any tiny shred of self esteem we can get after being kocked down by addiction so I GET IT.

The issue is just that someone who has been sober for 11 months is still very much in their infancy  in terms of sobriety. The danger of course is ALSO relapse as you are building your recovery on such a public platform and not really focussing on the internal process needed for a deeper understanding of addiction and how to treat it. It troubles me greatly but everyone’s path is different. The only thing worse than a relapse is a public one after you’ve been ’spreading the sober gospel all over instagram’

* (instagram & facebook not our blogging community, this community saved me and I managed to really get amazing help and support here in this space)



Happy rockbottomversary to me!

Hellllooo! Still sober everyone, I haven’t disappeared into a bottle of Sauvignon Blanc, yay me 👊 So 3 years ago I hit my head on that koi pond. Fucking hell! I can’t actually believe it’s been that long.

Facebook has this really cool way of reminding me of all the shit I got up to with the little pop up windows. 3 years ago today… there it was a photo of mr hurrah and I on a night out the night after I had that horrific accident. That day I started drinking at 10 in the morning just to function. We had to go to a mate’s birthday. I was black and blue thankfully under my clothes so no one could tell.

When I look at that photo I just want to cry and hug myself. I can remember so clearly how I felt. My skin was crawling and I couldn’t even drink the hangover away.

That wasn’t my last drink. But something changed that day. I knew the jig was up. Robin Williams said: “As an alcoholic, you will violate your standards quicker than you can lower them. You will do shit that even the Devil would go “dude…”

Well I’ve explained away and rationalised so many deplorable things but I was DONE. It is such a relief when you stop fighting isn’t it? Like a massive weight is lifted. When you stop trying to pretend you’re ok, when you stop all the moderation tactics and lies.

Anyway, I haven’t been around much and I’ve missed everyone! So many things have happened, dog diarrhoea, pinworms the list goes on. I’ll save all the glamour for my next post.

Hope everyone is well? I’ll be catching up on everyone’s blogs soon.

Lots of love.

Sober Hurrah 💃🤩👊🌈🥳

Ps. Still on and off the fags and eating my body weight in tea biscuits. Keeping it real yo.

Ikea ghosts, poo rivers and ‘keeping my shit together’

coddiwompleI should really be writing 4 separate posts but the new 2019 me is all about maximum efficiency so here goes.

I feel a bit like Bridget Jones because looking back I do start off most of my writing with a report on the fag and sugar front and it’s not entirely lost on me that I am failing miserably at stopping both. I am of course still smoking like a trooper and have ballooned in size due to all the festive gorging. One does not need to eat 3 mince pies for breakfast.

We have officially moved to the coast.  Something I never thought I would say!? Mr Hurrah has wanted to live near the sea since he was little but I always just thought that it was just a pipe dream.

The move was fuck fuck fuckity fucking stressful. I got rid of half of my belongings; it was necessary as the house is slightly smaller than we are used to. Making a million micro decisions ever day is very tiring. I threw away (ahem… recycled) a mountain of kiddie artwork, clothes and random clay things that says mum on them. I am not a hoarder as such however I do have an immense emotional connection to some things. Especially it seems, stuff from when my kids were small. It brought back so many memories some good but some of my relapse periods and it was really hard to hold myself together through it.

The day of the move the moving truck couldn’t fit everything in which was great! I realise that sarcasm is considered the lowest form of wit, yet it comes so naturally to me why fight it? We moved what would fit in the truck and arrived exhausted that afternoon with kids moaning and crying they wanted to go back home. Sorry kids, this IS home.

Moving into a new house is a bit like a cat having to use another cat’s litter box. It’s very weird, primal familiarity of another creature’s intimate abode. I had it cleaned before we moved in but you could still smell other people’s smells or maybe that was all in my head? Anyway I plucked out my trusty Nag Champa Incense and just burned those babies continually until the house started to smell of us.

I took the kids upstairs to get their beds ready and then we heard a great banging noise coming from downstairs accompanied by Mr Hurrah’s grunty sounds he makes when he’s doing something strenuous. I rushed downstairs only to see a scene reminiscent of the Jack Nicholson ‘here’s Johnny’ scene in the Shining. Mr Hurrah was wielding a hammer with a crazed look in his eyes going ape shit at the electric fireplace. You see, the fireplace was in a very awkward spot and we simply could not fit our L shaped Ikea couch in there. He was going berserk at it muttering ‘fucking glorified heater’ to himself over and over again.

Thankfully he managed to dislodge the mantle and fireplace without leaving a massive hole on the side of the house so that was a relief. The stress levels were still high because at this point we could not make the covers fit the couch as we built the L the other way around. Mr Hurrah and I were taking turns wearing the couch covers over our heads like angry Ikea ghosts the other directing and stretching the ends. After what seemed like eternity it came to me that we may need new covers and I was right. That god for small mercies I say.

After all of that I just wanted to take a long shower only to discover that the water was set to boiling so burned the living shit out of me and also that the shower door would not close unless you held it closed with your one hand. I forgot to warn Mr Hurrah so as I was drifting off I just heard the screams of pain and expletives that followed through a haze of tiredness.

The following couple of weeks we managed to unpack and sort out the shower but then I had to prepare for the in laws who were coming to stay for Christmas. As usual all of the organised women of England had booked up all the delivery slots for December so I had to brave the shops to purchase the obligatory Christmas lunch things. I thought I would be super clever and go at 6:30 in the morning naively thinking that the Marks and Spencer’s would be empty. When I arrived it was full of Christmas shoppers who all had the same not so brilliant idea.

I am always amazed at how manic people get around the festive period and they were loading their trolleys as if the food was going to run out. Bumping elbows to get the last Christmas pudding and trolleys were loaded with enough alcohol to kill a small village.

The day before Christmas we decided to get a puppy. I know…rookie mistake. We promised the kids a dog but I was quite apprehensive about the timing as we had guests. We bought a beautiful Cocker Spaniel boy and brought him home on the 24th.

The previous owners we a bit dodgy to say the least so they didn’t give us any puppy food and we didn’t know to ask. When you change a puppy’s diet so suddenly their tummies get very upset so I was dealing with rivers of poo, fleas and worms as well as trying to have a Merry fucking Christmas.

I am pleased to report that Charlie is now flea and worm free and also his poos are more towards to mousse consistency not that you need that level of detail.

I feel like I’ve been hit by a truck, we’ve not had a holiday in a year and this December was anything but restful. I had a couple of fleeting alcohol thought and one short fuckit moment where I almost wanted to go into a pub. I think its ok…I didn’t and honestly I don’t want to drink. I’m just tired and need to recharge that’s all.

The kids are totally in love with Charlie and I have a feeling its totally going to be worth it but at this point I think I’ve gotten myself a new baby and I did not like the baby phase with my human children. He is very cute which of course is his saving grace.

My word for the year is going to be ‘keeping my shit together’

Every year I choose these lofty words and I never really seem to stay on course with it so I think ‘keeping my shit together’ is probably also not realistic but seems more achievable than something grander.

Overall I’m in a good place. My life is very full and I am stretched thin but I am so incredibly lucky to have an amazing family, friends and a gorgeous doggie to boot. I am so grateful to be sober through it all and just thank my lucky stars I get to experience this life in all its glory the agony and ecstasy

May you all Coddiwomple with glee into the new year and fill it with lots of new adventures.






That ol’ familliar feeling…


I would love to be able to tell you that I have reached the pinnacle of health and virtue. That I am completely smoke free, eating kale for breakfast and pooping rainbows. Alas this is not the case and my breakfast still consists of two gargantuan cups of coffee and a cigarette.

I’m doing ok.

I’m sober, that is something.

Familiarity is interesting, it can breed contempt most certainly especially when friends  get all up in your business. Familiarity can also be very comforting, according to Tony Robbins people are driven by 6 core human needs:

1) Certainty & Variety

2) Significance & Love & Connection

3) Growth & Contribution

Yes…I’ve started listening to Tony Robbins. Now before you go judging me for jumping up and down in my living room asserting my ‘personal power’ let me just say that Tony is not a ‘motivational speaker’ He’s actually a pretty deep dude. He was raised by an alcoholic mother and a lot of what he has to say really resonates with me.

So the need for certainty is a real thing and this need can drive addiction for sure. If I relate this to my on and off smoking this past year or two…The reason I go back to smoking every time is driven by my need for certainty. We will go back to familiar patterns of behaviour even if it’s hurting us just to fulfil that need. This dynamic was at work during my entire drinking career, every single relapse I had was driven by this need for certainty and comfort.

I am still learning to cope with stress…Rome wasn’t built in day ya’ll. All that being said really need to knock this on the head it’s costing me a fortune and 3 sun salutations are making me out of breath.

We may be moving to the coast soon, living the dream yo! During this time of applying for a mortgage and buying a house my need for variety has been met in spades…the thing is I don’t like variety/uncertainty all that much. I am a creature of habit, no big surprise there. I thrive on routine and things staying the same…change is really hard for me.

I am dreading making new friends because in England if you don’t drink you are seen as a weirdo. Mummy wine culture is in full swing here and that is how the mums bond. I’m sure people will be friendly but bonding will be much harder because when you say you don’t drink they look at you as if you have three heads.

It’s going to be fine. Who needs friends anyway, am I right? (**insert crickets chirping**)

So during this time of great change one thing that has remained constant is my sobriety thank fuck for that! I’m drawing again and being creative most days gives me such a boost. Its makes feel great to be alive. Getting sober is by far the best decision I have ever made. Sobriety has given me my life back. Now I just need to iron out the coping with the stress thing and I’m golden.

Peace out sober peeps. xxx

Challenging the culture


So I’ve been following this woman called Erin Shaw, she’s started a community called Tell better Stories.

“Tell Better Stories examines lifestyle media and marketing geared toward women, and the messages we constantly see in our feeds and in our lives: that alcohol is the norm, an essential part of “lifestyle.” We’re not prohibitionists, but rather question how we construct messaging in media (including social) and marketing. Since we’re all creators now, how do we create thoughtfully? Our aim is to create conversation and help develop useable guidelines to help tell better stories about alcohol in lifestyle media.”

Find her website here:

So I really love what she’s doing and I started getting involved by adding a hashtag and my view to a meme she flagged to her followers on instagram. The meme in question is the featured image for my post and was posted by the institution that is Scary Mommy who has 1.1 Million followers.

I was really excited about this new outlet and I felt like I was playing a small part in challenging the status quo…like a sober ninja fighting the good fight.  I could not have prepared myself for the shitstorm that broke out on instagram the following morning.

I will spare you the detailed barrage of comments that were thrown around.  Suffice to say the women who follow scary Mommy on instgram were not impressed.

A couple of highlights:

“If a meme threatens your sobriety better go to back AA”

“SOME people are taking this way to seriously I think they need a drink!”

“Don’t be jealous just because we can have a drink and still be epic parents.”

The most upsetting thing though was one woman who felt that we were shaming them. She thought we were coming from a place of holier than through teetotallers who look down on the women who drink.

This totally knocked the wind out of my sails and I had to take a step back.

My intention was to communicate with a brand that is equating drinking with motherhood and normalising the use of a highly addictive drug. The result was a shit-fight between followers of these two institutions and I honestly don’t think the brand Scary Mommy even noticed and even if they did probably didn’t care.

The culture we live is constantly telling women and mothers to DRINK.

We need to drink to…

feel sexy
be naughty
feel like independent women
deal with motherhood
to have another identity besides just being a mom
feel young
be fun
take care of ourselves

I am going to rethink how I can help the cause without making other women feel ashamed. I do not judge anyone who drinks. How can I? If you drink moderately more power to you, if you are drinking addictively you are self-medicating as I did for the best part of 20 years probably more (I’m too tired to count)

I am questioning the ‘mommy needs wine culture because it has a lot to answer for. So many women are stuck in addiction and they will remain stuck for many more years because they can hide comfortably behind these memes. I did! I couldn’t believe there were other moms who drank like me! I was so relieved because I thought if they are all doing it must be ok. It’s not fucking ok! We are losing ourselves to this drug.

The indoctrination can be subtle but mostly its pretty much in your face. Here are a couple of examples of memes in case you haven’t seen them:

Adding a hash tag to memes asking the brands posting them to “#tell better stories” may not be the way to go for me. I like what Erin is doing but I feel that the women who are stuck in addiction can look at those comments on social media and feel judged or they will quite rightly feel outraged. Like we are trying to tell them what to do! My beef is not with the drinkers but with the brands and the alcohol companies…

Follow the money because someone is getting very rich and it suits the patriarchy down to the ground to keep women drunk & submissive!

As for the sober ninja…I’ve approached several brands directly by post and email and I think I will keep doing that for now. In some small way my voice is objecting…even if no one is listening. Challening an ‘idea’ like mom wine culture has to be done at the people in power not the people participating in it.



The way out is through…


“Every addiction arises from an unconscious refusal to face and move through your own pain. Every addiction starts with pain and ends with pain. Whatever the substance you are addicted to –alcohol, food, legal or illegal drugs, or a person — you are using something or somebody to cover up your pain. That is why, after the initial euphoria has passed, there is so much unhappiness, so much pain in intimate relationships. They do not cause pain and unhappiness. The bring out the pain and unhappiness that is already in you. Every addiction does that. Every addiction reaches a point where it does not work for you anymore, and then you feel the pain more intensely than ever. ”
~Eckhart Tolle (The Power of Now pg152-153)

The veil

I can see through the thin veil that separates my two lives. The two different fates determined by which part of my brain wins the game. My tea drinking yoga doing self or the other one. The one that smokes and drinks neat whiskey without making a scrunchy up face. The one that doesn’t give a shit whether she lives or dies, the one that will do anything on a dare. It terrifies me to know that I am one bad decision one disaster away from picking up a drink and drowning myself in it. The thirst for oblivion can come on so quickly it comes in a surge and I almost have to catch my breath…it can thrill me so. I know I’m in trouble when I start listening to Led Zeppelin too loudly or when I drive too fast. I’m on the edge between worlds and anything can happen… The thrill is short lived. What is left is terror and fear. Sobriety is a day at a time deal. I’m good for today but I would be lying if I told you that other part of me isn’t still there. She is there and she peeks through every now and again just to remind me to do the work every day so that I get to go to bed sober. Instead of fearing her I have to take good care of her. She is just a frightened little girl, this shadow of mine.  💖💗💕

Invasion of the body snatchers…


So I was thinking the other day… you know how you can’t drink and drive?  Not being allowed to drink and drive is a totally necessary restriction in a civilised society because you will cause an accident and injure or kill people. I think we can all agree that this is a good thing and that no none will trust a drunk person behind the wheel of a car.

I was just wondering  how  I thought that I can live fullfilling purposeful life while under the influence in all of my spare time?
How did I think I can really navigate life, make good decisions and pursue goals while being fucked up in the head…so fucked up that I cannot be trusted to operate a machine of any description?

You are literally not present in your life so you are leaving a zombie in charge! This explains so many things to me. When I can seperate the zombie (the addict under the influence) from my self I can see I never stood a chance with the walking dead at the steering wheel of my life. My higher self did peek though every now and again and made some good decisions so thank god when I got sober wasnt the point where I lost everything.  I will hasten to add the caveat of YET here! I know recovery is a one day at a time reprieve.

I for one am fucking relieved to be back in my body and my head. It really does feel like I’ve woken up from a bad dream.

A guide to attending music festivals, sober.

Image result for music festival meme

So this month I’ve been fortunate enough to attend two music festivals where I saw amongst others Queens of the Stoneage, Iggy Pop, Goldfrap & The Cure.

I just wanted to take a moment and acknowledge a huge shift in my sobriety…at no point throughout both of the festivals did I even have an inkling or a thought that a drink may be nice! This is huge. Booze had become a non-entity to me. Is this where the ‘obsession’ lifts I wonder? I sang, screamed and danced sober and had a bloody fantastic time doing it. I had forgotten that a live gig really is one of the happiest places I can be.

I was very aware of alcohol of course because the Finsbury Park festival was completely overshadowed by the lengthy cues to the beer tent.  I find it really amusing that people are now demanding refunds because they had to wait so long to get a drink. How can they expect a refund when what they were presumably paying for was to see a band, which they did. They just weren’t able to get as shitfaced as they would have liked be so now a refund is in order? This is where the tentacles of the alcohol industry become very visible. They have twisted themselves firmly around the live music scene and now people cannot even fathom not getting hammered and just listening to the music.

Forgive me, I digress…

Without further ado my guide to going to music festivals sober and having a bloody marvellous time!

  • Shoes
    Make sure you are wearing comfy closed shoes…I would recommend boots like DM’S, Wellies, Biker boots or the like. Do not try to go to a festival with your nicest open toe sandals. Your feet will be trampled upon by big oafish lads in rock shirts and also become unrecognisably filthy. Two hours into the festival people seem to completely be unable to use dustbins and the entire park becomes one large dumping ground for cigarette buts and empty paper cups and old bits of hot dog.
  • Water
    Take a water bottle and keep filling her up! Keep hydrated and beat overheating. Your skin will thank you in the morning.
  • Festival outfit
    Make sure you have a rocking festival outfit to get you in the mood and help you feel great! I personally love face glitter and don’t need much convincing to use it. I also like anything that has fringe and flowery see through kimonos are a must. If you feel good about yourself you are way less likely to miss booze.
  • Tissues & wet wipes
    Always have tissues and wet wipes in your bag. You don’t know the state of the toilets and may just need to make a balaklava out of them to enable you to survive the experience.
  • The drinkers
    If you are in early sobriety make sure than you really observe the drinkers to see what it actually does to you. Observe from start to finish. You will notice that they are deliriously happy the first hour when they start drinking. Then it’s a slow descend into a pit of debauchery. I saw a lot of crying, passing out and swaying. They can be your biggest motivating factor to stay sober.
  • The Music
    Close you eyes and pretend you are alone with the music. This will shatter any inhibitions you have and you can get right into it! Dance!!!! You were born to dance. You do not have to be wasted to do it! Let the music take you away!
  • Exit
    When you know there is only 1 or 2 songs left start making your way to the exit. Get a little jump-start on the crowd. Go to sleep with a clear head and get up the next day feeling bloody fabulous albeit slightly sunburned and tired:)