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Christina Kimbrough: Finding Sobriety in the Midst of a Pandemic

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On February 3rd, 2020 I officially had my last drink after 10 years of heavy drinking. I tried for 2 long years to get sober, but it wasn’t until I hit a personal low that I was able to seek help.

Last year, I was living in Norfolk, VA and had gotten a new job that I was very excited about. It was a big step in my career. Unfortunately, I was at the height of my addiction at this point and spent the whole night drinking. I started the night by drinking a bottle of wine with my husband, and when he fell asleep I continued to drink and walked to a neighbor’s house at 4 in the morning. I’d never met this person but I heard noise in his backyard, so I hopped the fence and joined him. I stayed there and drank and then went to my job drunk the next morning.

My performance at my new job was obviously terrible due to being intoxicated. I continued to drink that entire day, so I went on a two day binge. I’d never done things like this before, and was scaring myself and my husband. After my binge, my husband sat me down and said I needed help. I completely agreed. We both made the decision that I should move back to my hometown of Cleveland, Ohio to get sober. So that’s exactly what I did. I opened up to my new boss and shared that I was struggling with addiction. They were so incredibly kind and supportive.

E5FBB993-EA92-47C6-88D9-F286E2C12DFASo, in January, 2020 I moved home. I thought that moving home would help me quit drinking...but it didn’t. I kept drinking and lying to my family. I lived with my grandma who doesn’t drink and provided a safe place to get sober. While I was home I continued to drink so my grandma took my debit card and keys so I wouldn’t drink. I finally decided to enter outpatient treatment for about 8 weeks. I ended outpatient treatment the week COVID hit.

Getting sober during a pandemic has been a wild journey. I used a number of things to get sober. I joined AA and have a sponsor and have been doing meetings virtually. I go to therapy. I’ve also tapped into the world of sobriety using social media. Instagram and Facebook have been huge places for me to follow and connect with other sober people. In the very beginning months of sobriety, I read memoirs of other women who were sober such as, “Quit Like A Woman” by Holly Whitaker, and “We are the Luckiest” by Laura McKowen. Their stories provided me with hope.

Recovery is a daily thing for me. I try to meditate, work out, journal and attend AA meetings and connect with other sober women. I also share my story openly online as a way to keep myself accountable, end the stigma surrounding addiction and provide hope to others who may be struggling. If you’re reading this and wondering if you can get sober, believe me, it’s possible. We can and DO recover. Things aren’t perfect in sobriety. Life is still hard, but I’ve learned how to cope in healthier ways.

I have to say I’m the happiest I’ve ever been. My sobriety is my proudest accomplishment to date, and it’s something I’m grateful for everyday.