Loving being a mother but hating being yourself is a powerful paradox. Coexisting, yet battling.
Every addict and alcoholic I know has the mirror moment. It’s a make it or break it moment.
I lived with my two children, who I adored, and with my daughter who died, who I adored and was ever present in my heart. I lived with alcoholism, although I was hoping that alcohol was a visitor. Not something that I actually lived with. Not ever present.
Until the mirror day.
Until the morning that I brushed my teeth and washed my face and straightened up and looked in the mirror. And actually saw myself.
I saw a woman with lank hair who no longer cared what she looked like. A woman who looked 10 years older than she was. A woman who hated herself.
A woman who had almost, but not quite, given up on herself. A woman who was scared every day.
I saw a woman I didn’t recognize. But the woman my children saw every day.
Alcoholism didn’t take away my home or my children. I didn’t lose material things. I didn’t lose the ability to do everything I could with and for my kids.
I lost myself.
I am eternally grateful for the mirror moment. As horrifying as it was, realization smacked me in the face. The mirror moment started me on the path to sobriety. The mirror that showed me a woman who needed help.
The mirror that showed me I wasn’t quite lost.