First thing first

  1. Admitted we were powerless and that our lives had become unmanageable.  

This step has two parts. First, I had to admit that I was powerless AND that my life had become unmanageable. 

I could say that I was powerless because I couldn’t stop drinking even though I had multiple attempts of self-will. But was my life unmanageable? I had a job, an apartment went to college at 30+ years old, and graduated with honors. I drove a car and paid my bill on time. 

I gave to charity by providing rides to homeless people and giving them money when I had it. I thought I was doing pretty damn good for being a single mom in Northern Virginia, which is very expensive to live. We had everything we needed, but it was always second to the drink. We would go shopping at the salvation army because I was broke, but not really, because I spent money on charity and drinking. Now I realize that charity came from people-pleasing at that time, which I will talk about later. Until I admitted that I was powerless, I could not change. I was, and still am, powerless over alcohol. It was 2018, and my husband was on deployment. We had just moved into our home the year prior. I quit my bartending job and was suicidal. I drank every day from morning to night, or whenever I would pass out, wake up, then drink more to “take the edge off .”A bar is an excellent place for an alcoholic like myself to work because I was surrounded by my love…alcohol. Sure, I have kids, a partner, friends, etc. But my true love was alcohol. I would’ve done anything for it and would prioritize it without question. It was not until I quit the job that I thought, hey, I won’t drink as much because I won’t be surrounded by it. Wrong. That is when my drinking picked up. I had nothing to do and nowhere to be.

I could drink without restraint, and my husband was away for work. I drank and made friends with the neighbors. We partied and acted like fools. Not all the neighbors liked me, and they still don’t, three and a half years later. I gained 50lbs, and my depression and anxiety were through the roof. I decided to see my Dr. and lie on the intake sheet about how many drinks I have per day to get on some mood stabilizer, and they prescribed me Zoloft. I started taking it, and all the while, I was drinking, so… That’s not how medicine works, mixed with obnoxious amounts of Gran Marnier and Vodka.  

This deadly mix of drugs and alcohol landed me in a ball at the back of my dark closet at night, crying about how I am a terrible mother, and I hate myself and what I have become, and I wanted to die. My friends were at the closet door telling me that it was ok and I should come out. I am fine, and it is not that bad. I guess I was no longer the fun drunk. Meanwhile, things with my children were going straight to hell in a handbasket. After twenty years of drinking, my kids were 15 and 10 years old when I got sober. A drunk and depressed mom mixed with a teenage child of an alcoholic with their material is a deadly cocktail. We fought A LOT, and my other child witnessed it most of the time. There was a lot of chaos, and I felt that I was failing at the one job that was my reason for staying alive, being a mom. If I wasn’t good at that, then why even live, so I tried to kill myself. I tried to swallow the entire bottle of the pills I was prescribed to manage my moods. 

In an instant, I thought of my mother, who did this same thing while I was in High School. Then I thought of the following:

I don’t want to be like my mom

I hated her for doing that to me

She was depressed. I’m depressed

I probably won’t even die. I’ll get my stomach pumped

I had my stomach pumped once

Harley would hate me so much

I would have a suicide attempt on my record and would never live it down

I fail yet again

I spit the pills out. 

Thank my Higher Power which I call God, I will call it HP/ Universe/Universal God, that Harley had just run upstairs after a fight we had, and she shut the door, so, unlike me, she did not have to see her mom in that moment of extreme fear and rock bottom. I have so much more sympathy for my mom now after all this.

Yep, pretty freaking unmanageable. That was my rock bottom. I had to make changes, or I was going to die. I stopped shaking, picked up the phone, and called someone who knew about the CATS program at INOVA hospital. The process began, and I was scheduled to go to detox the next day. I was terrified and relieved. The instructions I was given were, “You have to be using at the time of admission since it’s a detox.” I said, NO PROBLEM!! I called up my friend, and we planned the whole thing. She would pick me up, and we would go to the bar we both used to work at and have one last hoorah, then she would drop me off at the front door of the treatment center. 

And that is what we did, and that was my last drink, September 26th, 2018.

After five days in detox, I was told I needed to go to a treatment center to get the help I needed (I wanted it too). I was so anxious about everything. How was I going to pay for this? Who would watch my kids and animals? What will my husband say? Five hundred things were going through my foggy and quickly overwhelmed mind. I barely even remember that first week, but I remember that everything worked out. My HP had me the whole time, and that was before I even knew they were there. Insurance covered most of my stay at the treatment center for 28 days. After that, dear friends “moved in” to our house for a month to take care of things until my husband got home, ten days before my release.

While I was in treatment, I had a thorough opportunity to do my first step and look at all the ways in which I was powerless and how my life had become unmanageable. Although I let it all out from a place of raw vulnerability because I was told that the first step is the only one that I must do perfectly, I listened. The whole time that’s what I did. I listened to what people were telling me to do because I had completely given up on myself. There was nothing left, nothing but emptiness and despair. The last thing on this step, but not least, is WE. It is a we program, and we are here to support each other. I can not stay sober if I do not listen to those who have gone before me and have what I want. I can not do this alone. Alone lands me in my closet because I had tried to quit drinking on my own and failed yet again; isolated, depressed, violent, and suicidal. I was no longer capable of being in charge (I never was, though), and I needed help. The WE saves me every day. Every day, I reach out to someone when I have something I need to run by or have a question. Often I will call to see how I can support or be of service to a friend. 

The charity is still there, and in this new way, it is in helping others stay sober and feel good about themselves. 

I also help people by teaching yoga and helping others learn to love and accept themselves a little more every day. 

The first step is the most important, and I remind myself of it anytime I feel myself struggling with things in life. I am powerless over _______ (fill in the blank), and my life was unmanageable. I will continue to be powerless, and the unmanageability is simply one day at a time. 

I pause, call a friend or three, get some movement in my body like a walk in the woods, breathwork, meditation, etc. Then, I return to the person, situation, or thing, which now seems more manageable.

One day at a time

One hour at a time

One minute at a time

One breath at a time

I look forward to the next time we are together. Until then, be kind to each other.

With so much love,

Christy-Lee B

the look of love

I posted some photos from an accident I was in for my last blog post. I love pictures, and for over two years, I would use my Free prints every month and get my 86 free photos. As a result, I have three large boxes in the basement full of memories.
I had photos up on the walls and shelves in Fames. I wanted to show how exciting and significant my life was (on the outside). However, as I was going through the boxes looking for the Kia pictures, I saw many others documenting the last few years of my drinking, with the previous year being my rock bottom. I gained 60 lbs, suffered from depression and anxiety, and attempted suicide. I was so miserable that I did not want to live, trying to drink myself to death.

The first sting was my College graduation, then my wedding, my kid’s birthday parties, holiday parties, dinner gatherings, hanging out on the balcony alone, and sitting by the pool. It didn’t matter what I was doing in the pictures. There was an absent look in my eyes. My eyes were reddened, glazed over, and empty, not one visible drop of a soul, self-love, gratitude, or joy.
There was nothing but a space where my soul used to be. I could barely look at them. It stung so badly that I almost put them away.

I write about leaning into fear, which is precisely what I did. I looked at those empty eyes in each photo and felt shame, guilt, and remorse, and then I released myself from judgment. I can not change the past and my past actions and behaviors. What I can change is how I live my life today. Today, I live life with joy, self-acceptance, and a lot of self-love. I can look into the mirror, see my soul, and see that I am worth being here and deserve to love and be loved. I see hope for the future and abundance in my path. I look in my eyes today, and I am a completely different person.

Many of you know me by Christy-Lee, but I went by Christy before my accident. I would joke and say that I call myself Christy-Lee now (which is my given name) because Christy tried to kill me. It is only partly a joke. I look into Christy’s eyes and see such hurt and sorrow. Such despair and shame. It was sad when Christy died, we were so close, but things needed to change.

The look of love is in my eyes, and it fills my heart with glee. I love me some me, and I never said that when I was drinking. I will keep the photos because of what the 9th step promises say,

“We will not regret the past nor wish to shut the door on it. We will comprehend the word serenity and we will know peace.
No matter how far down the scale we have gone, we will see how our experience can benefit others.”

Thank you all for your love and support! You mean more to me than I can express in words. You are my purpose.

I look forward to the next time we are together. Until then, be kind to each other.
With so much love,
Christy-Lee B

My new soul

WARNING contains graphic photos

It was June 2015, and I was getting dressed in a fabulous high-low dress with these antique look-a-like cameo earrings. The earrings were clip-on, and I got them at the nail salon while getting my nails done. Once back at home, I enjoyed my usual vodka and soda while getting ready to head out to celebrate my friend’s graduation from nursing school. After I managed to slap on some makeup, I decided that I looked way too cute not to show off (or at least that is what my drunk ass thought), so I went to a couple of bars to show off and drink for more.

By the time I was supposed to leave for the pre-party, I was two sheets to the wind, and I drove to the winery in Clifton, where we had wine and cheese. I remember being so drunk that my heel kept slipping off the stool foot bar and almost caused me to fall right out of my seat. I also remember thinking that I was so cute and fun to be around that I invaded another party that was going on and tried to ask people to join our party.
They rolled their eyes and declined.
I thought they were lame and continued with the wine. Then, when it was time to leave, I wrapped up a chunk of cheese and took it with me. I got to my car, put the cheese on the passenger seat, and followed the other vehicles heading to the celebration.

The roads were windy, and the cheese shifted. I looked down to move it back, looked up, saw brake lights, made a sharp turn to the left, and hit head-on with a tree. The car in front of me saw what happened and came back to help. I was in pain and shock, but I was primarily drunk, with .286 BAC when I got to the hospital. I remember my friend laying me in the back seat, flipping up my dress, and examining my body for injuries. I kept saying, “I am so sorry that I ruined your graduation,” and “This is going to be so expensive.” Thank God for saving my life that day and for the angels there to care for me.
I was taken to the hospital and released shortly afterward with minor cuts and bruising.

The next day was when reality hit. I was very hungover from the alcohol, the IV painkillers, and the stress. I had to start cleaning up the mess of the night before.

The collision center was walking distance from my apartment, so a friend and I walked over to gather my belongings. When I approached my car, the KIA Soul that I absolutely loved and had labeled my favorite vehicle thus far, I saw the truth. A man nearby commented, “That’s your car? You should be dead.” I looked in the soul and saw a clear print of the side of my face on the airbag. It all happened so fast. On the floor of the passenger side, there was the cheese and one earring.

I remember sitting at the Ford dealership to buy a car with the $1000 down I scrounged up, seeing a black 2015 Kia Soul and thinking, I should buy that. I loved that car. Then I thought, no, that’s bad luck. Look what just happened to you in that car.
So, I bought a Ford Focus. Although I was grateful to have a reliable and safe vehicle, I was not too fond of that car. I regret not getting the soul when I saw it on the lot, but I knew it wasn’t the right time. I still hold on to the one earring for some reason.

A couple of months ago, I drove to my Reiki 2 training class. Sometime before, I had set my GPS to avoid highways and forgotten. I put in the address and head on my way. I arrive at the light to cross onto Clifton Road, and I feel the anxiety start to consume me. In a split second, I decided to lean into fear and heal. Using the tools I have learned for self-regulation, like breath, positive self-talk, and affirmations, I drove on and knew eventually I would see the tree. The tree was there just as I remembered it, large and sturdy, with a trunk slowly chipped away from the previous accidents. Reflectors nailed to it and around it to avoid this very scene. Mine was not this tree’s first accident, and it has probably even taken a life or more. I drove past it, paid enormous respect to it, and thanked my HP that I was alive and present for this moment of healing.

When I arrived at the class, I shared my experience, and I felt lighter.
I felt strong and proud of myself.
I leaned into my fear, I walked up to the lion and pet it, and now the lion no longer chases me.

Let’s come to today. Today I closed the loop and traded for a new SOUL! A bright red one that says, “Look at me!” I feel so happy to be going back to the car that I enjoyed so much, and I am even more pleased to have had the years between getting sober and learning how to handle situations that used to baffle me. Plus, I am saving money on the payment and gas. Great things happen to us when we lean into our fear. I am beyond grateful to be alive and share my story with you, my friends. Every day is a blessing.

I look forward to the next time we are together. Until then, be kind to each other.
With so much love,
Christy-Lee B

I can do hard things

I did some hard things today.   I met my sponsor, and we worked on the 4th and 5th steps of my 12-step program.  This is my second time working the steps with a different sponsor.

If you have no idea what those steps are, I will list them here.

4. Made a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves.

5.  Admitted to God, to ourselves, and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs.

A searching AND fearless moral inventory!  OMG NO!  This is the worst!  I must look at everything in my life, find what I need to work on, and let go.

All my character defaults lead me back to fear.  Fear of abandonment or fear of inadequacy.  Angry about my partner…fear, upset about finances…fear, resentment…. fear, guilt…fear, fear, fear, fear. 

I wrote about fear before and mentioned that it could stand for “F everything and run,” “false evidence appearing real,” or “face everything and recover.” As I was in the car to meet my sponsor, I started to say F everything and run!  I don’t have to tell anyone this stuff; why do I need to say it to another human being?  I have said it to my HP, and we are good; I could turn around and reschedule, or I won’t even mention it.  “IT” is something I have carried with me since childhood and was dancing with the idea of becoming free from the bondage of self. 

The importance of telling another human being, whom I can trust, is that I am only as sick as my secrets, and if I keep secrets, I might pick up a drink.

So, I leaned into my fear and told her everything.  She was loving, supportive, nurturing, and kind.  Everything I could have hoped for but hardly felt I deserved.  I let go of my burdens and was free from the wreckage of my past.  It feels like I lost 500lbs off my shoulders.  I told my worst secrets to someone, and they still stayed, they did not judge or criticize, and they loved me through it.  The moral is that no matter what you have done, you are still lovable and worthy of peace, love, and serenity.  You no longer have to carry around the burdens and wreckage, and you will come out shining on the other end.  I am not alone, and neither are you.  There is love for you here.

Thank you to my sponsor and all the folks who loved me until I could learn to love myself. 

I look forward to the next time we are together.  Until then, be kind to each other.

With so much love,

Christy-Lee B

5 Tips for an awesome hug

I finished teaching my class this afternoon and felt compelled to take my time gathering things before leaving. The Sound Doula was setting up for a session and I offered to help cover the front desk for check-ins.  A woman checked in and soon after said, “Can I ask you a super random question? Were you at the Druminyasa event here a few weeks ago?”

I said yes, I was.  She went on to say, “I saw you giving hugs to people at that event, probably people I knew but it looked good, and I thought of asking you for one that day but I did not.”

I asked if she would like a hug and she said yes.  Now, not to brag but I give a pretty good hug.  When I worked in the bar and others were hugging everyone, I used to joke that I’m not a “hug whore”, because my hugs are meaningful embraces and not just something I am doing to try to work your wallet. 

So, I found divine timing put me at work longer than I thought necessary, so that I could be there to give this person a hug.  We hugged, then we hugged again.

Here are my 5 tips for an awesome hug,

  1. Ask for consent.
  2. Open your arms as wide as possible to invite all the good energy in.
  3. When you feel them pull away, hold tight.  This is where the magic happens.
  4. Notice them physically relax then, take a couple deeps breaths together.
  5. Keep holding on, you will know when to let go.

I call it the 20 second hug. The body will start to physically relax after 20 seconds, and you will feel a softening in the recipient and yourself.  These hugs are not for the faint of heart because you may feel a surge of joy, affection, love, and warmth flow over you.

In today’s world it is so important to show that we are there for each other and there is love and support.  A simple hug can change someone’s entire day.  Also, be sure to ask for consent.  This may be an odd concept however, if you are a victim of any type of abuse, like I am, you will understand and learn the importance.  Asking consent gives people the chance to be in physical contact with you or not, and we should learn to be respectful of the choices people make. Now that we know better, let’s do better!

Go out there and ask someone if they would like a hug, follow my 5 steps for an awesome hug, and feel the love and joy you both get in return.  A hug says everything while saying nothing.  Let’s bring back hugs in 2022!

I look forward to the next time we are together. until then, be kind to each other.

With so much love,

Christy-Lee B

Give me a hug!

Tears on my yoga mat

I cried in yoga today.

When I practice yoga asana and it feels so good in my physical body to move.  It also feels good in my spiritual, mental, and emotional bodies.  Moving my body helps move energy and helps me think more clearly and be more open to insight and intuition my HP.

I had a great weekend visiting my friend, and the weekend before we hosted a yoga retreat.  My energy has been in all kinds of directions and, as I shared on the previous post, I binged.  I am not beating myself up about those choices however, I was feeling it in my physical body, especially after the three-hour drive home.  I was eager to move energy, I was physically shaking.  I got home around 4pm and was signed up for a Spa yoga class at 630pm.  I knew that if I did not move, I was going to fall asleep and miss the spa class so, I signed up for a Transform yoga flow, which is a challenging class.  We moved through the class and at one point the instructor gave me a hands-on assist, in chair pose of all poses, and I lost it. I got weak in the knees and felt like I was going to fall over, and I started bawling.

The following things came to mind.

I miss human contact

I am so happy to have such clarity

I am so blessed and living on purpose

I miss my mom

I used to not be able to cry

It’s ok to cry

I am safe and it is ok to let go

So, I cried off and on until the end of Transform and then some.  My beautiful Bestie came in and brought me a Diet coke and we sat down to take the Spa class together.  I thought I was fine until…you guessed it, that hands on assist.  I welled up, ugly cry face and all, and took a deep breath then let it go.  The instructor held the space in such a lovely way.  That is one of the things I fell in love with about the 8 limb path and asana, the tears and the healing.  The way that I felt no judgement and only love and compassion from those around me. 

For savasana I set up my props for Queens chair and adopted the pose of holding myself in a firm embrace to show myself love and compassion.  The instructor (who is also my friend) came up to me, wrapped her arms on top of mine and rested her head next to my head for a moment.  I could feel every bit of love and support that she was giving me in that small moment.  Class ended and we all started gathering our things and a friend approached me and asked if I was the one crying in class, and I said “Yes, I am a crier.”  They extended compassion and said they wished they could have a healing energetic release like that. 

I love being part of a community that supports each other on their healing journeys, and where you can cry in a room full of people and you do not feel awkward or embarrassed.  We are all at different places on our healing journeys and if we can share our stories then maybe we can help others along the way to feel safe crying in a yoga class.  I have many stains on my mat and it just shows me how much work I have done.  Work and healing, healing and work, that’s the reason for the tears on my yoga mat. I would love to hear from you if you have ever had a similar experience or have anything else you would like to share. There is love for you here.

I look forward to the next time we are together. until then, be kind to each other.

With so much love,

Christy-Lee B

The hangover

Happy Cinco De Mayo Friends.  Previously on this day I would go out with friends for margaritas, tequila shots, and tacos (I ate to drink more).  I would wake up hungover and sick to my stomach, throw up half of the morning, then start drinking all over again to “take the edge off”. 

I am currently in DE visiting a friend and we have been enjoying ourselves without alcohol.  We went a beach yesterday, sat on the sand, read books, walked a mile, and had a great time overall.  So, why did I wake up feeling hungover today?? Alcohol is but a symptom.  I no longer drink but I do eat. And eat I did.  When I get eating there is no off switch, no signal to say, “this is enough.”  I joke that I have a hollow leg and it is because of the amount of food I can eat in a short period of time.  So, I binged yesterday on food.  I ate half a Reuben sandwich, chips, ice cream, candy, half a chicken Caesar wrap, more candy, a buttery salted caramel milkshake, more candy, a bowl of veggies and rice (nice try for healthy lol), more candy, more rice, two packs of chocolate wafers, another bag of chips, and some chocolate.  Now, I do not name all this specifically to activate anyone, I say it specifically so that those who don’t understand, might try to understand what it looks like to have the disease of ‘more’.  I can not stop, and there are times when I use food in the same ways I used alcohol.  Maybe in my mind I ‘deserved’ it because I celebrated my one year of teaching yoga (self-sabotage is subtle).  As I was allowing myself to enjoy these inner child delights, I was saying that it was OK to eat these things.  It was OK at first, then I continued through the night binging on foods that I wouldn’t usually eat at home.  I am not loaded with will power (that is all my HP) so, I try not buy foods that I binge on to help reduce the chances.  It seems to work on the regular, however, I had that ‘vacation’ and ‘I deserve to treat myself’ mentality and now, I have a hangover from all the sugar and junk. 

So, today I will be kind to myself and release myself from judgement.  I prayed to my HP and have a daily reprieve.  I love that there is the freedom of choice. Choose to stay in the mud or bloom like the lotus.  I feel muddy today, but my pedals are shining through.  To all you out there who may be suffering with addiction of food, alcohol, or whatever it may be, there is support and help.  You are not alone and there is love for you here.  Anyhow, I appreciate you for reading and hope you have a wonderful 5th of May!

I look forward to the next time we are together. until then, be kind to each other.

With so much love,

Christy-Lee B

Kind of a big day

Today marks one year since I have been teaching yoga. The path has been nothing short of rewarding. I started my yoga practice soon after I got sober in 2018. Yoga really helped me connect with my mind, body, and spirit.  Foremost, it gave my mind and body something to do instead of drinking. I fell in love with the practice and the idea of the 8-limb path and decided that I wanted to learn more.

I saw an ad for 200-hour teacher training and thought I would enjoy deepening my practice and learning more about the way of living my yoga.  All the signs were there, people telling me I would be good at it, things working out financially, and the support from my job to take the time off needed for the training.  Then Covid happened so, I completed virtual training for my YTT200.

I wasn’t sure if I wanted to start teaching, but I did know that if I started teaching, I wanted to teach at the studio where I practiced and trained. I wanted to give back to the community that had given so much to me. After I completed my training, a good friend said, “If I paid all that money for a training, I would want to get my money’s worth.”  I didn’t love what they said but, it made me think. Usually, when I don’t love what someone says it’s because there’s truth to it and I need to figure out why I didn’t like it.

At the same time, I had another instructor give me information about a studio that was hiring. I decided I was going to wait for the one studio that I really wanted to work at to call me for auditions and was not going to apply at the other studio. A couple weeks later I ran into this same instructor again, and they asked me “had reached out?”  then nudged me to think it over. Before I applied, I spoke to my friend who gave me the advice prior, and they said, “If I was a brand-new yoga teacher, I wouldn’t be picky about where I was teaching.” That gave me the courage and motivation to apply.  I decided to go for it.  I applied and was hired at both studios.

Today, I have taught over 500 yoga classes and am growing into my own more and more each class.  I get to live a life where I encourage people to be their best selves, to believe in themselves, and to accept themselves exactly where they are at today. I feel fulfilled and on purpose.  The students seem to be enjoying my teaching because they tell me, and that makes me feel good.  I know my purpose is to help others, and I am beyond grateful to have the platform of teaching yoga to help you help yourself. I love watching you gain self-love and acceptance and watching how strong you are all getting!! It lights up my day when I get to come into the rooms and share the light and energy with all of you.  A sincere thank you to all the people who believe in me and tell me that I am doing a good job.  You mean more to me than words express, and you give me the drive to keep moving in this direction. I have love for you.

I look forward to the next time we are together. until then, be kind to each other.

With so much love,

Christy-Lee B

Miracles & Me

Photo by Helena Lopes on

Today I got a text.   A text from someone who will forever be in my heart.  This person and their partner did for me what not many would.  I was struggling with alcohol and was deeply depressed.  I drank for 20 years, and it had taken me to the point of car accidents, failed relationships, lost jobs, and suicidal thoughts.  Let’s call these friends AJ for sake anonymity.  I used to drink with AJ…heavily.  It was fun, until it wasn’t.  A had quit drinking and had remained sober for about a year at this time.  They got their life in order while I sip by sip threw my life away.  I was alcoholic and could not manage my own life and finally one day, I tried to take my own life.

This even tipped off a series of event that were nothing short of miracles.  In my desperation I reached out to ask for help (miracle) and was directed to CATS, a detox program.  I needed this so badly and had wanted sobriety more than anything.  I was willing to do whatever I was told if, it meant that I was going to be able to on day have serenity so, I was told I needed a 28-day treatment center.  I panicked.  My partner was away on deployment, we had two children in school, and a heap of cats and dogs.  Who was going to take care of all this?  How was I possibly going to be able to swing 28 days? God, I needed it so bad, and I knew that this was my shot.  It’s now or never.

I asked for help again (miracle) and the nurses helped me find a treatment center that took my partners insurance, and we found one an hour and a half away (miracle).  Now, I just needed one all covered…everything else. I reach out to A in despair, and they say, “No problem.  Me and J will pack our bags and move in for a month and take care of the kids, house, and animals.”

(miracle). At the time I was so clouded, still very much detoxing, everything was amplified and swirling in my head, I could not register the magnitude of what they were willing to do for me.  I made a few more calls, then packed my bag for treatment (miracle). 

1,313 days later and alcohol has yet to touch my lips (miracle).  I say” yet” (You’re Eligible Too) because I am an alcoholic and the odds among us for relapse are not in our favor.  So, I continue to do what I’m told (miracle), and follow instructions from my sponsor, therapist, and most of all, my HP (Higher Power).  My life is literally better in every imaginable way, and AJ and I are still close friends (miracle, miracle).  I will never forget the angels that came into my life and carried me while my wings were so terribly wounded.

Today I got a text,

“I received your card. Thank you! I’m sending you a great big ‘we are amazing’ hug.  While it hasn’t been easy, we made the best decision to live a healthy, sober life.  Putting ourselves first for once, that in turn has given us so much more than we could have dreamed of 7 years ago. This past Thursday was my 6 year sober date, God has blessed us and shown us an abundance of grace. I love you Christy-Lee.”

It was so touching that I had to share it with you.  There are people out there who are willing to help, there is hope, and we can change.  One day at a time.

I look forward to the next time we are together. until then, be kind to each other.

With so much love,

Christy-Lee B

close up shot of scrabble tiles on a white surface

Setting Boundaries Quotes

Setting boundaries quotes part 1

Hello Friend and Happy Fall!

Let’s talk about setting boundaries and look at some setting boundaries quotes. This is a two-part post because I feel it is important to talk about setting boundaries and keeping those boundaries in place.  There is no time like the turning of a season to make positive changes in life.

I used to be, and partly still am a YES girl.  I would say yes to just about anything.  I said yes because I wanted people to like me and it gave me a chance to show them that I will not abandon them, like I was abandoned so many times in life. I would put up with a lot of crap to get someone to like me, and that need for approval and acceptance was only made worse by my drinking. I would accept the worst kinds of behavior and each time I would simply lower the bar, until the bar hit the ground.

Once I finally got sober, I was faced with many realities.  I did not necessarily like the “friends” I had kept.  They were starting to fall off the map or treat me poorly.  I appreciate the ones who fell off because I did not have to be the one ending the relationship. The one’s who stuck around were not thrilled with the growing sense of self-esteem and love I was beginning to exude.

As I discovered setting boundaries quotes, I began to say “No.” A LOT.  I noticed things starting to change.  The more I valued and respected myself the easier it became to spot phony friends and cruel intentions.  There was someone once who told me that no is a complete sentence, and it was a game changer.  No longer did I feel like I had to lie or come up with a lengthy explanation to not hurt feelings.  No.  I Cant.  No explanation needed.  It was like I had a way out…finally!

Now, I still said yes to a lot of things because it’s in my being and I love to help others if I am able yet, saying no was becoming more comfortable and I saw that some respect boundaries and some do not, and that is OK.  To each their own. I used these as opportunities to “weed my garden” so to speak, removing toxic plants that were smothering and choking out the beautiful flowers.

In my life today I continue to read setting boundaries quotes and set healthy boundaries with friends and family.  In turn I am willing to respect the boundaries that they may set. It works both ways, if I want someone to honor my boundary, I must honor theirs, even if I do not feel the same way. It is better to say “NO”, and use setting boundaries quotes than to say “yes” and be angry and resentful.  Here are some setting boundaries quotes to consider, if you like them click the link for the complete list of 90 quotes.

“Boundaries are to protect life, not to limit pleasures.”

– Edwin Louis Cole

“Each time you set a healthy boundary; you say, ‘yes’ to more freedom.”

– Nancy Levin

“Don’t let anyone convince you that you owe them an explanation. Make a choice that works for you!”

“When we fail to set boundaries and hold people accountable, we feel used and mistreated.”

– Brené Brown

“Boundaries: If someone throws a fit because you set boundaries, it’s just more evidence the boundary is needed.” 

This holiday season remember that it’s OK to say NO.  Take time for you and your self-care, read a book, the list of setting boundaries quotes, watch your favorite holiday movie, snuggle with your partner or pet, do the things that bring you joy.  Life is too short to spend it trying to please others.

If you have any comments or feedback on this, please put them in the comments section below.  I would love to hear how you have handled similar situations and how it left you feeling.  There is love for you here and you are enough!

I look forward to the next time we are together. until then, be kind to each other.

With so much love,

Christy-Lee B

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