Ever since the beginning of my recovery, I knew that I wanted to get a tattoo to honor this journey. I wanted to get something that symbolized the hard work I have put in, the distance I have traveled and the efforts I have made. I wanted to get something to remind me of the hard battle I have fought. Something that encompasses all the incredible feelings of pride, gratitude, happiness and peacefulness that I feel in my mind on a daily basis without alcohol in my life anymore. Something that I can look at and whenever I do it will bring up that swell of emotion instantly, all of those feelings and remind me of everything I have to be proud of everyday.
I got the word "free" on my drinking hand. On my wrist. It is in a visible spot, and Evan particularly was concerned about the optics. I knew without a doubt that it had to go there though. The four dots after it represent Evan and the kids and the journey that will continue on.... And I am not ashamed of any part of this.
I was inspired by this quote from Laura McKowen. "Free" became my word of intention for the year, and it has been the word I keep coming back to. I always felt when I was drinking that things were never that awful. I would tell myself, my drinking habits were never as bad as so and so. At least I didn't drink like you know who. But I was never really happy. Alcohol had such a hold on me, and I felt so stuck, so held back. Now that I am sober, I finally feel FREE. Free from the hold of it, free from the anxiety, disappointment, lying and sadness. Free from not being who I am. Who I truly am. Free to be me. I am grateful and feel real, constant joy first the first time in a long time. I am calm and at peace with my life. Things are brighter and simpler. I am free.
"Freedom is mental clarity combined with inner peace. Freedom is when you can see without projecting and you can live without causing yourself unnecessary mental tension and stress. It happens every moment you are not craving for more. Happiness and freedom are one." -Yung Pueblo