Wake up and Thrive

085: A Big Celebration Episode

March 18, 2024
085: A Big Celebration Episode
Wake up and Thrive
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Wake up and Thrive
085: A Big Celebration Episode
Mar 18, 2024

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Celebrating a milestone is always special, but hitting five years of sobriety is not just a personal triumph; it's a beacon of hope that I'm thrilled to share with you. Through heartfelt stories, I, Bridget, open up about the freedom sobriety has unlocked in my life, giving me the ability to juggle my passion for this podcast with cherished moments like caring for my sick son. These years have brought an abundance of health, deeper relationships, and financial stability that I once only dreamed of. Listen as I recount the powerful conversations with my children about life choices, imparting the value of transparency and conscious living.

Embarking on a coaching career was a leap fueled by the desire to guide others on their path to sobriety without adhering to conventional recovery labels. In my reflections, I distinguish between simply having the ability to drink and consciously choosing a life of clarity and engagement. Sobriety for me isn't about saying no to a drink; it's a wholehearted yes to living fully. I share the stark contrast between the emotional numbness of my drinking days and the vibrant connection to life I experience now, hoping to inspire others to feel genuinely good.

Finally, I extend an invitation to join me in breathwork, a practice that has significantly deepened my sobriety and overall well-being. Whether it's part of your routine or you're looking to try something new, this episode underscores the profound benefits of this mindful exercise. We wrap up with an open heart, encouraging each of us to embrace our sobriety journey, free from shame and rich in commendation for the progress we make each day.

Let's Connect.

FREE masterclass: 3 Skills necessary to create intimacy in your marriage. Watch it here.
Free guide: 5 ways to find Calm: Get the guide here
Come find me on Instagram: @findherwildcoaching
Check out my website and my offerings here



Show Notes Transcript Chapter Markers

Send us a Text Message.

Celebrating a milestone is always special, but hitting five years of sobriety is not just a personal triumph; it's a beacon of hope that I'm thrilled to share with you. Through heartfelt stories, I, Bridget, open up about the freedom sobriety has unlocked in my life, giving me the ability to juggle my passion for this podcast with cherished moments like caring for my sick son. These years have brought an abundance of health, deeper relationships, and financial stability that I once only dreamed of. Listen as I recount the powerful conversations with my children about life choices, imparting the value of transparency and conscious living.

Embarking on a coaching career was a leap fueled by the desire to guide others on their path to sobriety without adhering to conventional recovery labels. In my reflections, I distinguish between simply having the ability to drink and consciously choosing a life of clarity and engagement. Sobriety for me isn't about saying no to a drink; it's a wholehearted yes to living fully. I share the stark contrast between the emotional numbness of my drinking days and the vibrant connection to life I experience now, hoping to inspire others to feel genuinely good.

Finally, I extend an invitation to join me in breathwork, a practice that has significantly deepened my sobriety and overall well-being. Whether it's part of your routine or you're looking to try something new, this episode underscores the profound benefits of this mindful exercise. We wrap up with an open heart, encouraging each of us to embrace our sobriety journey, free from shame and rich in commendation for the progress we make each day.

Let's Connect.

FREE masterclass: 3 Skills necessary to create intimacy in your marriage. Watch it here.
Free guide: 5 ways to find Calm: Get the guide here
Come find me on Instagram: @findherwildcoaching
Check out my website and my offerings here



Speaker 1:

Hi, my name is Bridget and this is my podcast, wake Up and Thrive. My intention for this space is to help women around the world live more awake, aligned and truly alive. I believe wholeheartedly that we are designed to live, feel and experience the full range that life has to offer, and in doing so, we can live fully turned on in all areas. My story began with sobriety and has since been an initiation into rediscovering parts of myself that I forgot about or had abandoned. Learning to reclaim all of who I am has been the greatest gift of living awake, and together we will go on a journey of helping you to do the same. You can expect to learn practical tools to help you connect deeper to yourself, your purpose and those in your life. All you need is an open heart and an open mind. So if you're ready, it's time. It's time to Wake Up and Thrive. Hi, and welcome back to this solo episode on Wake Up and Thrive. My name is Bridget and I'm so happy to be here with you guys today. I am recording this episode while my sick baby is sleeping in. He's not a baby, he's almost eight, but he's sleeping in the next room over and I'm just I'm super, super grateful for this life that I have created. I get to do what I love sitting down here, sharing my heart, teaching you guys some powerful tools, while also being able to be home with one of my kids when they need me, and it's a luxury that I know not everyone has or I should say I know it's a luxury that not everyone chooses, because I do believe it's available to all of us. I'm not just someone that's lucky, it's not just because of what my husband does as a job. It really was an intentional choice to create this life, and this entire month, quite honestly, of March, I'm always reminded of how grateful I am, and I'll get into that in just a minute. But in order to step into a life like this, it requires a lot of internal work. To be able to it requires a lot of internal work because my outward life, the flexibility, the freedom, the connections that I have today they truly are a mirror to what I've created inside of myself. It requires letting go of all the shoulds right and how society says we should be operating or doing with our time, and really stepping into your truest desires. That is like the crux of why I get to sit here today and podcast with you guys. Coach women tomorrow night, my group program Let Love In starts. And, yeah, I'm just so freaking grateful. So, like I said, this whole month is honestly filled with so much gratitude because by the time this episode airs, I will have celebrated my fifth year of choosing sobriety.

Speaker 1:

So March 16th 2019 is a date that will it will be forever etched in my heart because it completely changed the trajectory of my entire life and my family's life. There is not an area of my world that has not been touched by my sobriety. I mean my physical health, my mental health, my spiritual health, my relationships, my business, my finances, everything. Everything has stemmed from that one decision. And I actually recently was talking to my middle schooler about this date. I was like do you? You know we have a bunch of birthdays coming up towards the end of the month. And he was talking about that and I was like but you know what comes up before that? It's mommy's sobriety date. And he said and my kids have been.

Speaker 1:

We've been very open and transparent with them throughout the entire process and he said to me mom and he said it very jokingly and lovingly mom, you can't celebrate that day, remember, remember that time you actually drank. Why are you celebrating that? And he, he's right, I did drink two and a half years into March 16th, 2019. And I love that he feels comfortable enough to say that to me, because the old me would have been super offended, but it really led to a beautiful conversation. You know, like I said, I've tried from the start to be honest and open with them, and I think that as they're getting older, they have a lot more questions as they're being faced with their own decisions and their own yeah, their own intentional decisions about whether or not they wanna drink or not. They're curious, and so I love that he brought it up. I love that.

Speaker 1:

What came after that? And I sort of wanna have the same conversation with you guys and talk about some things that I've really learned on my journey, and I might get some backlash from some of the sober community if anyone listens to this podcast on some of the things I'm gonna talk about. So I wanna just preface this with saying this is my journey. This is not my opinion of how everyone should do sobriety. This is not my opinion of what's right or wrong. I simply wanna share it because it is a little unconventional and I think some more of you more of you than not are gonna really relate to it. So I'll tell you the same thing I told my son. Fortunately, I think our kids are growing up in an era where not drinking is becoming more of the norm and drinking is more taboo. But five years ago not drinking was incredibly taboo and very rare and it was a big deal when you found out somebody didn't drink and so I did drink. Two and a half years in, he is absolutely right.

Speaker 1:

I haven't gone into complete details on what happened and what transpired. I've shared a little bit here or there, but, to be honest, I don't feel the need to and I have zero regrets about it because for me, that moment in time it truly solidified that I want to live sober for the rest of my life and I don't think I really felt that. I felt, I think, if I'm gonna be honest with myself the first two years of sobriety I had one foot in, maybe one foot and some of my body in, but I had one foot out. I wasn't quite sure if this was gonna be a forever thing and I know without a shadow of doubt now and it's so easy for me to just be sober, say that I'm sober, be around people that are drinking and I know that's not the case for everybody, but it is for me. And so I want to share this other side of sobriety. And, like I told Jackson, I'll tell you guys I do still celebrate this day five years ago because I want to honor that girl.

Speaker 1:

It took so much courage to choose sobriety and to step into this new world. I had literally zero idea of how, like what, I was stepping into. I thought putting down the bottle was gonna be the hardest thing I've ever done in my life and it was at the time but, quite honestly, that was the easiest part of my entire awakening journey. So, like I told my son, this is a day I will forever celebrate. Nobody can take that away from me, and I'm so proud of the choice I made five years ago, I'm so proud of the girl I was back then and I'm even more proud of who I am today and everything that I have learned by stepping into this journey. So let's dive into just some reflections. There's no real structure to this podcast today. I just I really want to share my heart, and so the first thing I want to share.

Speaker 1:

I found coaching. That was kind of the avenue I took. I didn't need AA or rehab. I really never resonated with either of those. It's not to say again that it's wrong, it just wasn't for me. Where I really found support and resources to actually feel better was in coaching, and so very quickly I decided I want to do this, I want to be a coach. And so when I tell people that I'm sober and then I tell people I'm a coach, they immediately ask am I a sober coach? And the truth is I have never had a desire to be a sober coach. I think in the beginning, partly it was because I had one foot out the door. I wasn't sure I would always be sober, but even. But looking back, I think the biggest thing was consciously I didn't know this, but my soul knew it.

Speaker 1:

When I think back on my entire journey, from dealing with crippling fear and anxiety as a teenager, feeling like I never belonged, to being a teen mom, getting married at a young age, to now being sober, the underlying theme is that I was always searching and seeking to feel good. I wanted to feel right, I wanted to feel something. I have to share this before, but I used to be the kid that would read chicken soup for the souls and I would read like sounds so morbid, but I would read like memorial pages for hours and hours and hours at night because it just it touched me. I never liked cartoon movies. It always had to be a real life movie with like a really like intense storyline, because I wanted to feel something and so eventually, feeling all the sadness and the anger and the grief that became too much, and so I reached for wine. Wine was the only tool at the time that I had in my tool belt to help me feel and I'm holding up air quotes feel good.

Speaker 1:

And so when I got sober, when I became a coach, I realized very quickly that even though alcohol was the thing I reached, for everyone has their thing. And so, again, it wasn't a conscious choice, but there was a part of me that never felt aligned to box myself in as a sober coach, and I now know why. It was because my soul knew from day one that I wanted to reach more people and whether or not alcohol was their thing. I knew that what I was about to learn on this journey, that in my, in choosing sobriety, I had to relearn how to feel, how to feel the uncomfortable stuff, but also how to feel good again. And I knew I knew with. I knew so deeply in my heart that this was gonna be relevant to any woman out there. I didn't know why, I didn't know all the tools I would learn, but something in me knew it and I'm really glad that I leaned into that. That was like my first really big experience with my intuition. Again, it was like from day one, the easy thing to do. I probably could have made a lot of money being a sober coach. They always tell you the riches are in the niches, but I just never aligned with it and I don't lead with it. So variety is such a small part of my story. So, yeah, that was the first thing I wanted to share, that I never really had a desire to be a sober coach and I'm really happy that I listened to my desire back then.

Speaker 1:

Another thing that's kind of interesting is I don't ever say I can't drink, because the truth is I can. I am a totally sovereign adult human being and if I wanna drink today, I can choose to drink. But I tell people it's not that I can't drink, it's that I'm choosing not to drink, and this feels way more true to me because it is a choice. Two and a half years ago, when I did drink in my home by myself, it was because of nothing else, nothing outside of me. There were outside circumstances that really impacted the experience I was having and I just I felt like I needed a break. But I'm not giving my power away to any of those circumstances.

Speaker 1:

The truth was, I made an intentional and very conscious choice to drink. Okay, I want you to hear that because I do think that sometimes when we throw on the word relapse or disease again, I know this is nuanced, I know everyone's journey is different, but I think it takes your power away. For me, it was an intentional choice to drink and I'm intentionally choosing to be sober today and every day. It's a choice. So, again, it's not something I believe I can't have. I can have it. My body doesn't really react well to it. It's like gluten. I probably shouldn't have gluten, but I have it sometimes. Right, I'm in control, I have sovereignty, I have choice. Same thing with drinking To me, it just feels that much more empowering and yeah, it just yeah. That I mean, that's really all I can say about it. It's just a way more empowering way than saying like, nope, I can't do that, it's not good for me. No, I'm choosing not to do that. I'm choosing to live a life awake versus living a life numb. And that's the other thing I want to share about sobriety.

Speaker 1:

One interesting thing I learned so, obviously, when you drink, you numb the sadness and the anger and the grief, and then you've also heard me also numb the joy. Right, you numb the joy and the excitement. So I was just like a shell of myself for years, years and years and years. But the other interesting thing is literally physical sensations were numbed in my body. There were parts of my body, some of the parts I'm trying to think and just, yeah, I mean like I'm taking my hand and rubbing it up and down my arm and I can feel full sensation everywhere I touch. And I'm telling you, when I got into embodiment work, this was one of the first exercises they did and I realized how much of my body, like, I felt no sensation there, no sensation, which is, quite honestly, probably the reason I never enjoyed sex, right, hi, mom. But it's true, like you have to be awake, and when I say awake I don't just mean mentally clear, like your body has to be awake.

Speaker 1:

And because I drank so much I mean I was drinking one, maybe two bottles of wine every single night for years, years it was so rare that I took a night off I literally and I don't know the physiological reason for this, I don't know if it's simply that my awareness, I was just disconnected from my body, or if literally the sensations turn off. I don't know, but I'm telling you parts of my body were completely numb and so that was just an interesting part of again. This is why I don't want to be just a sober coach, because it's not just about learning to not drink. I had to learn how to get back into my body. I had to learn how to reawaken those sensations. And there's a process. You can't just take your hand and do what I'm doing now and rub it up and down your arm and hope you wake your body up, like you could literally go into a trauma response. There is a somatic process to slowly come back into your body and wake up the sensations so that you can feel good again. So I just thought that was a really interesting fact about sobriety.

Speaker 1:

Another reflection I wrote was. I realized when I got sober I didn't really like people, which you know, coming from a huge Irish Catholic family, really priding myself as always being an extrovert in the life of the party. This was interesting to me. I had to really sit with this for a while and the truth is it's not that I didn't like people, it was that people being around people. I felt so drained by it and I think that was ultimately one of the biggest contributors to me drinking like just so much social anxiety, or, you know, we can call it social anxiety or we can call it being highly sensitive and just absorbing other people's stuff. It doesn't really matter what the reason is. I can just tell you my truth, and my truth is I mean, I just felt it this past weekend when I was around my family. I came home now part of me was actually physically sick, but I also slept for 12 hours and I think some of it was just family hangover, like I love my freaking family, but it was just when I'm around a lot of people.

Speaker 1:

I know this about myself. Now I need at least a day, sometimes two, by myself to just sort of recover, because I do equally love connecting with people in person, but I also genuinely love and need my alone time. So I've always been the person that had a few close friends instead of a lot of surface friends, and this was really hard. I fought that for a really long time. But I would say, ever since we've moved to this new house that we're in, it's a little bit more private and remote. I've really embraced this about myself. Like I love that I can have the both the best worlds. I can go out, be around people, be super engaging, be super energetic, connect deeply with people and I also can spend an entire freaking week in the mountains by myself, like I would be happy to do both. And so in sobriety at least in the beginning, I really tried to like overcome this. I tried to be like can I just like overcome my I called it things that social anxiety? Can I just like learn how to be with people? But now that I've learned more about feminine embodiment and like just really tuning into my truth, my experience, that's something about me that I've learned in sobriety and I've come to, most recently, love about myself. I really do.

Speaker 1:

So this episode's getting super random, but I hope it's interesting to you guys. The last point I wanna share. That again, I think is kind of controversial, but I think it's really important. So one thing I'll say, even though I'm not a sober coach if you are sober, curious, or you are embarking on your own journey of eliminating anything, you know, if it's alcohol, maybe it's a certain food, maybe it's you don't wanna be on your phone as much shopping, whatever it is for you doing it alone. It's like I don't wanna say it's impossible, but it's so much harder, it's so much harder. So finding coaching, finding mentors, finding friends, finding some avenue of support is incredibly helpful, and those that are actually on a sobriety journey will know this when I say there's a lot of apps out there that are completely free that help you track your sobriety dates, and it's so important, especially in early sobriety. I think it gave me this hit of dopamine every time I would get to check off another day of sobriety and it's like it was a beautiful tool that I really leaned on, and I know a lot of people lean on, and so, again, nothing wrong with it. But the interesting thing is I'm now I honestly don't know how many days of sobriety I have. All I know is two and a half years ago I drank. Sometime in the fall of 2021, the end of 2021, I chose sobriety again.

Speaker 1:

I have one journal entry in November of me talking about how it feels this time to be sober, but I don't actually have any date that I celebrate, which, quite honestly, is probably why I still celebrate March 16th. And again you might hear that and think, oh, that's because she has one foot out the door again, and I don't. I really don't. I am so 100% certain I will die sober. Like I don't want to put alcohol in my body at all, I have zero desire to have that be a part of my life. Physically, I just feel freaking gross as crap with it, but also just like mentally, spiritually, all the stuff, and yet I don't feel the need to count my sobriety dates. So that is something that I don't think a lot of sober people will admit to or talk about, or even do.

Speaker 1:

We cling to the tracker, the app that I was using, or whatever you're doing to keep track of your dates. If you go to AA, you get like chips based on how many days sober you are. And here's the thing like I celebrate, my brother is sober and I absolutely adore him and I love having his sobriety date to celebrate and show up. I think it's amazing and he does deserve to be freaking celebrated for having that many days of sobriety. And for me and my journey it was more detrimental than helpful.

Speaker 1:

And that's what I really learned, like the amount of shame I felt the second time. It's so crazy, like I remember even when my husband confronted me about the drinking and he did it in such a loving way, it was like full acceptance. It was like it was really like beautiful moment between us. But I remember feeling so much shame because of that damn tracker. I was like I have to freaking, start over. Like this sucks this, I mean it makes me feel like.

Speaker 1:

When I did the 75 hard challenge like even that was such a shame experience when I messed up, I was like, oh my God, I gotta go all the way back to day one and I just wanna call a big fat bullshit on that. It's bullshit, like no, I may not have been sober consecutively for five years, but five years ago I made one of the most courageous decisions that not many women will make and I made it and it has completely changed my life. I've not been perfect at it and, to be honest, I don't think a lot of the sober people out there are perfect about it. I just don't think they wanna admit it because of how much shame there is about having to start back over again.

Speaker 1:

So what I decided to do the second time was throw out the app and, I'll be honest, the part I miss the most about it is I got to see how much money I was saving, you guys, and that was like unreal To be able to see firsthand. Wow, drinking a bottle of wine every night, you know, even though, like the cheap wine is like seven or eight bucks, hello, barefoot, um, you know that adds up when you're drinking every night. So I saved a ton of money. So I missed that. That part was kind of cool.

Speaker 1:

But I intentionally made a decision that I'm not tracking days anymore. I'm not. I'm gonna still celebrate the initial day that I chose sobriety and I'm gonna stand by that. I'm gonna be completely transparent. I'm gonna be honest. I'm gonna tell people, you know, I'm not gonna let people say, wow, five years of sobriety. That's amazing, like I'm very open that it has not been a linear journey for me, but it still deserves to be celebrated just as much as whether I had five years or two and a half years, or you have one day, or frickin a thousand days. When you make that decision to step into this new life, it should be celebrated. It deserves to be celebrated, and so, for me, counting my days. It just added to the shame, it added to the pressure, and so I stopped. I stopped counting the days. I've no freaking idea how long I've been sober this time, but I'm really proud of myself. I'm really proud of how far I've come, and I want to encourage you. If you are somebody that is considering alcohol specifically, I just I want you to know that I see you and I know the feeling of like I'm getting ready to jump. I'm getting ready to jump and tell people. I'm getting ready to jump and put the bottle down. I'm getting ready to have my day one. Whatever it looks like for you on the journey, just know that I see you and I'm celebrating you and I'm here for you In any way that I can to support you along the journey, because it has been by far, by far, the greatest choice I have ever made and it would be such an, it is such an honor to support anyone on that same journey. So please know that there is zero shame here.

Speaker 1:

I do not do sobriety with rules, I do not do rehab, I do not do work, aa and a whatever it is. I simply wake up every morning, I do my gratitude list, I do my journaling and meditation and I just whisper, hand on heart and just say today I choose not to drink and that's it. I go on with some days I don't. Some days I forget to do it. But I go on with my day. I'm super honest that I don't drink, but I no longer explain myself. I no longer, unless someone asks it's not necessary, it's not necessary.

Speaker 1:

That it's almost like, in a way, I do sort of feel like I'm closing the chapter on that part of my story, not because I don't want to honor it and it's not because it's not important, but it's not all of me. It's a very, very, very, very, very small part of it's an important part of what brought me to where I am today, but it is a very small part of why I'm sitting here today with my sick baby in the other room, super freaking grateful for the life I've created. It is not just because I put down the wine and I have, whatever how many days Of sobriety I have, that's not the only reason. That's actually a fraction of why I feel the way that I feel today. But it was the first step and so I want to honor it and I'm grateful to you guys for hearing my story, hearing my heart and letting me share that with you. And if you are listening and you are sober, share it with me. Come find me on Instagram and let me know.

Speaker 1:

I would love if you celebrate with days. I would love to celebrate alongside of you, because I know how huge that is. So again, please hear me that there's nothing wrong with it. But for me, being in this this far into my journey, it feels really good to not need anything external To feel good about my sobriety. This is something that I get to hold in my heart, in my mind, in my soul, and I get to celebrate Just because, because it's something I want to celebrate. So that's really all I have for you guys today. I love you so much and I will see you guys next week.

Speaker 1:

Before I let you go, I want to remind you to sign up for this month's breathwork class. You can register in the show notes below. It is the tool that I wish I had in early sobriety. It is the tool that will give you so much clarity in areas in your life when you feel stuck. It is the tool that will teach you how good it can feel to be in your body again. So if you haven't tried it, if you have tried it, I look forward to seeing you again. If you have not tried it, it's a very unique experience and I promise it's one that you will never forget. So I hope to see you guys there. Have a great week and we'll see you next Monday.

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Monthly Breathwork Class Reminder