Celebrate 8 with an addict


Today is my 8th birthday. Oh, sure, I don’t look a day over 6, but trust me on this one. It has been 8 years today that I gathered up every ounce of courage I had and checked into a detox/rehab facility. I had hit rock bottom and knew it was literally do or die time. I wasn’t ready to die.

Eight years clean. Eight years without using drugs to get through a day. Eight years of trying to live life on life’s terms and not my own. Eight years of not giving other people the power to send me right back into a place of using and losing. Eight years of giving my children a drug free mom.

Don’t get me wrong. It isn’t like I hit a perfect number of years and all is well. The urge or knee jerk reaction to find a fix when I am really hurting still pops up. When someone I trust kicks my feet out from under me, I want to use to make myself feel good. I mean, really, who wants to feel anything but good? But life is not all about the good stuff. And as an addict, I have to figure out how to make life work when I am hurting, angry, lonely and sick and tired of life on life’s terms.

Yesterday was hell. My body knew I was jonesing for something but my brain didn’t know why. I would love to say I woke up this morning to birds chirping as I danced my merry way around the house singing as I did my chores. Not even close. I woke up and dreaded facing the day. Any day. I wanted to stay tucked under my covers and be as far away from people as I could be. It didn’t help that once I dropped off the kids it began to rain and become very cold. A perfect day to snuggle up and hermit myself.

But like any good addict, I knew where I needed to be. So, I forced myself to get dressed and get out. Even though it was raining and sleeting and they were calling for more snow and ice, I still made myself go. Where? Where every addict and/or alcoholic should go when they have a day like I had yesterday. And when they need to have a day like I wanted to have today.

8-year-medallion-color.jpgI went where I belonged. To a room full of addicts. They applauded my 8 years. Understood my angst. And supported me when I cried for reasons I didn’t understand. When I walked out of that room, I felt better. I was better for having been in that room with a bunch of drunks and druggies. They keep me sane. And clean. For 8 years.

And now? Now I want to celebrate.

EIGHT YEARS, people!

Celebrate with me! What accomplishments are you proud of that you want to share. Toot your own horn here, people. I want to share my celebration with you. Because? I worked damn hard to get here!


  1. Congratulations, and Happy Birthday! You are an inspiration.

    kalynne pudner’s last blog post..Double-Visual DNA

  2. Con’grats on B’day. !!

    BTW..inspiring story

    /pd’s last blog post..tweets that make you hmmmmmmmm

  3. Jen, sobrity is a great thing and is to be celebrated. I dryed up in 2002 myself and fight the urge to tip one back, however each day is easier to resist the tempation. Fourtunatly for me giving up the drugs was not that hard.

    Most users, abusers, and drinkers get dried up and then wonder where to go, and what to do from there. That was my problem with drinking. God brought me to a wonderful solution, Christian Intervention Program (CIP) which is at http://www.sofm.org.

    It is Bible based, however it is not churchy or preachy.

    I not only went through the program, I now teach it.

    Thank you for sharing with others.

    Rocky V.

  4. Eight looks good on you – congratulations, Momma!

    Liz’s last blog post..Proof that I am Real Live 80’s Bride

  5. Eight years is AWESOME. Kudos! Keep it up! ๐Ÿ™‚

    FireMom’s last blog post..New. Favorite. Blog. Makes. Me. Drool.

  6. Cheering for you up here in the frozen North!! Eight years — wow. May you have many, many more.

    Daisy’s last blog post..No-Good Very Bad Days can happen to anyone.

  7. Woohoo!! Way to go. My parents are in your neck of the woods and say they’re calling for big snow tonight. If you do get a good amount, jump in and make a snow angel for me, k?

    Crisanne’s last blog post..What would you do?

  8. What a wonderful story. I am so glad I had the opportunity to read it. Happy Birthday!!! May you have many, many more birthdays.

    Debbie Yost’s last blog post..Maximum Exposure

  9. Congratulations Jenn & Happy B’day”!

    Procrastamom’s last blog post..Those tissues I keep in the glove box sure come in handy

  10. Congrats. I have never been through rehab, but am the daughter of a recovering alcoholic, So I admire you and wish you many, many more years of sobriety.

    Jennifer’s last blog post..Another fun Wens in the life of an underwriter

  11. Congratulations! I’m married to a guy who calls himself a “retired” drunk (10 years sober in may) and who is also a long-retired meth addict–heck, he tried everything. (

    I don’t have an addiction myself, but I living with him, I understand the struggle. You’re admirable!

    Leslie M-B’s last blog post..Ten great tips for teachers and mentors

  12. You are awesome. 8 YEARS. You have my admiration, congratulations, and wishes for maximum joy in the days, weeks, months and years to come.

    Karoli’s last blog post..Mirror mirror

  13. Happy Birthday, my friend!

    Busy Mom’s last blog post..Let’s do it like they do it on the Discovery Channel

  14. Congrats babe. That takes a lot of strength and courage. To get to 8 years and to tell the world.


    Kelley’s last blog post..Randomness on drugs

  15. SHIT! I just realised what my last post was called. Im SO SORRY!!!!!

    Kelley’s last blog post..Randomness on drugs

  16. For my 8th (regular) birthday I went to the roller skating rink, did the hokey pokey and turned myself around. So stick one foot in and one foot out and happy 8th birthday to you. Congratulations!

    Susannah’s last blog post..Flash

  17. Big HUGE fat congratulations! I am so happy for you!

    Happy 8th birthday and MANY MANY more!!

    sam’s last blog post..At Least the Computer Hard Drive is Still In Tact. For Now.

  18. CONGRATULATIONS! Not just for eight years (which is AMAZING), but for getting through YESTERDAY!

    Julie Stiles Mills’s last blog post..lotsa helping hands

  19. Congratulations! Reminds me that we all just need to take it “one day at a time.”

    Alicia’s last blog post..Welcome To Balancing Motherhood: The Site Where You Learn Youโ€™re Not The Only One Trying To Do It All and Still Have a Life

  20. You go. Congratulations!

    midlife mommy’s last blog post..I Must Have Missed The Memo

  21. Happy 8th!!

    You should check out what a woman hater is saying about us coffee drinking blogging moms. Sounds like a real creep!

    Kathleen’s last blog post..changes

    [Editor’s note: I took out the url to the haters site. I don’t promote hate here. Laughable as the idiot was, I am not sending people that way. ~Jenn]

  22. 8 is GREAT. Sorry, I must be channeling Big Bird or something…. Way to go!

    Laura L’s last blog post..Yikes!


    Chantelle’s last blog post..Whatโ€™s in your Closet?

  24. Jenn that is awesome. Congratulations.

    I gave up smoking 1 year, 2 months and 8 days ago!

    I love quitters!

    Shannanb aka Mommy Bits’s last blog post..Catalog Companies are EVIL

  25. Bravissima! Brava!

    I’ve never been addicted to anything worse than a really good TV show, but almost every adult in my family smokes. My mom has tried and failed several times to quit. I tip my hat to you, you brave, strong lady!

    Danielle’s last blog post..Daddy/Daughter stuff…



    manic mommy’s last blog post..The Opposite of Love Contest Winner!

  27. Congratulations Jenn. What a wonderful accomplishment. I so admire you for this.

    Sleeping Mommy’s last blog post..A blessing of simple pleasures

  28. Congrats! From the sorta daughter (long story- he was my mother’s live-in boyfriend, but not my father) of an alcoholic, your children thank you for giving them a drug free mom. I thank you for giving them a drug free mom- so less children have to live the childhood I did.

    Amanda’s last blog post..My No Good, Very Bad Day.

  29. You are my hero.

    For real.

    I have done nothing that awesome in my life.

    PS. Please forgive me in advance for offering you a sip of my purse mine at blogher. I can never keep track of who I should offer and who I shouldn’t. I suck.

    Jenny, Bloggess’s last blog post..Judgemental cat is unpleased

  30. Oh hon, good for you! Congratulations on 8 years. Keep on plugging day by day. It’s not easy.

    I’ve had my share of problems in the same field and was/am a cutter. (Just like drugs, they say you’re never quite “recovered.”) The itch is still there from time to time, but luckily my kids are usually the kick in the ass I need to get set straight again.

  31. HOORAY FOR EIGHT YEARS! Being brave enough to face your demons head-on is an amazing thing, and you deserve nothing but praise for having not only faced them eight years ago but for facing them every day since. You have tackled your demons for 2,922 days. That is just incredible. More power to you!

    My recent accomplishment is having passed Anatomy in medical school. Hooray for us!

    Emily’s last blog post..Abraham Lincoln said it better, as usual

  32. Congrats Jenn. I think this is a day for YOUR accomplishment. I blab about mine all the time anyway.

    Suebob’s last blog post..Monstrous

  33. Happy Birthday Jenn! 8 years is awesome.

    Jules’s last blog post..The American Obesity Epidemic

  34. 8 years… that’s fabulous, jenn.

  35. Happy birthday Jenn! Your strength and courage is such an inspiration, so is your vulnerability and your weaknesses. What I admire most about you is how real you are and how you’re not afraid to admit your flaws. For that we see all your strengths. ๐Ÿ™‚

    Vera’s last blog post..Bacolod Chicken Parilla

  36. Congrats on the 8 yrs. That is a wonderful accomplishment.

    Jess’s last blog post..I’m Living in the Motherhood

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  38. Wow. Congrats, Jenn…you’re doing great! Thanks so much for sharing this with us.

    Amy@UWM’s last blog post..They Finally Have a Name

  39. That was an amazing post! Congratulations and all the best. You are a brave, wonderful woman. Keep going!

    Writing Mommy’s last blog post..Bed Time = Question Time

  40. I can’t imagine what a struggle that must have been and how strong you must be to push through it.


    Lisse’s last blog post..6x

  41. Shawna


    As the daughter of a one-time drug addict let me say, “WAY TO DAMN GO GIRL!!” I lived through my moms life and death struggle to kick her addiction and I am as proud of you as I am of her. She has now quit smoking as well and that wasn’t any easier. I know you will understand and appreciate how much I love and adore her. She is my best friend. You keep on keepin on….8 years is fantastic….you rock.

  42. Congratulations!! Honestly? I’m just happy to make it through another day.

    Desiree’s last blog post..Protected: I made a man cry yesterday.

  43. Since my wife is a a CADC therapist, I know all too well how many cannot make it, and what kind of a struggle it is. I am in awe of your new (well not so new) found strength. Congrats.

    JayMonster’s last blog post..Is it time to run out and get a Blu-Ray player?

  44. CONGRATULATIONS!!! You are amazing and a beautiful example to your children.

    Tartlette’s last blog post..Copper Topper

  45. happy birthday! ๐Ÿ™‚ that is wonderful!
    my sister is coming up on her 10th bday and my dad just had his 2nd. i’m so proud of both of them and you too.
    one day at a time. ๐Ÿ™‚

    Crunchy Domestic Goddess’s last blog post..Wordless Wednesday – 3/12/08 – Sad, but true

  46. What an accomplishment! I appreciate and value your willingness to share your ups and downs with regards to your sobriety. I am sure that you are providing great strength and encouragement to many. Many congratulations on eight years, on yesterday and for today.

  47. Congratulations! That is an amazing accomplishment. As the child of an alcoholic (he’s 20 yrs sober now) I applaud you so much. That is a huge and difficult thing to do and you are an amazingly strong woman to have stuck to it, gotten through it and to have even started that journey. That is an amazing accomplishment and truly a blessing.
    8 years. Wow.
    Fabulous. Congratulations and Happy Birthday!!

    rachel’s last blog post..Skintabulous Haiku and some Frump Busting too

  48. CONGRATULATIONS!! That is a fantastic, amazing achievement. I hope that as the years progress, you have fewer and fewer days like the previous, and more like this one.

    I realized just now that I seem to have been reading your blog for a long time now, because I distinctly remember your 7 Years! post.

    Mara’s last blog post..Who wants to gamble?

  49. Congratulations! I recently celebrated my 8 year anniversary of overcoming addiction to nicotine. I know how hard it is to not want to smoke again when I am having a hard day (even though smoking is an ‘acceptable’ drug) – so I doubly and triply (is that a real word?) congratulate you for going 8 years without what I assume were ‘unacceptable’ drugs! It’s great you can take pride in this accomplishment. Stay strong and keep up the good work.

  50. Jen, congratulations. And thank you from the bottom of my heart for your kind words on BlogHer. I’m deeply honored.


  51. the other elle


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