Day 43 ~ February 22nd

Today is my Husband's 49th Birthday! I can't believe he's going to be the BIG 50 next year! I am SO thankful that God brought this man into my life 20 years ago! He's truly my rock! THIS man, agreed to going to a marriage retreat on HIS Birthday weekend! WHAT?!? I'd say that's one committed and selfless act for sure! I could think of a million other ways for us to celebrate, but we chose this, and it was SO worth every minute!

The retreat was about fighting for your marriage and making your marriage "unshakeable". We delved into disarming anger and resolving conflict, getting truly "naked" with each other, having a "HOT" (honest, open and transparent) marriage, and we focused on "who we are becoming". ALL the many things that we really needed to dig deep into...especially after this past year!! It's going to be a process of healing and working through some hard things, but we are SO thankful for our foundation that we've built all these years. Without our faith, we would have NOT made it this far in our marriage.

On May 29, 2004, we were two young kids in love, promising our life to each other...not knowing all that life had ahead of us. After 17 years of marriage, 5 moves, 2 miscarriages, 2 kids, hard losses, addictions...we ended up losing sight of what was really important! There's SO many distractions in this world. It takes work which is something that we had not been doing for a while...just going day in and day out doing "life". Life is about SO much more! We are called to love with a pure heart and mind, and NOT lose sight of the goodness and faithfulness of God. We had lost our way, but now we're slowly making our way back to the right path. It's going to take time, but we're equipped! Equipped in this broken world that's trying to destroy the sanctity of marriage. Equipped to rise above the hurt and press forward to new beginnings!

We stayed at a lovely hotel for the weekend, and it was our first time doing this with me being alcohol free. I should have thought about this, but I wasn't mentally prepared for this step at all. We walked into the lobby to check in and it was like a huge spotlight was shining down on all the wine for sale at the hotel store. I then looked to the right and there was the hotel bar. My thoughts were racing, my heart was racing...I was stuck in my thoughts! Scott looked at me and asked if I was okay and I nodded my head yes, but slowly walked over and put my back to it all...said a prayer and took some deep breaths. Scott finished checking us in and I walked with my head down past the bar then quickly walked to the room! I made my mocktail so fast and downed it immediately then poured another. Whew, I was safe! I had the most important person with me and I was safe! The feeling was so strong that it was frightening. I can't wait for this part to pass, but I know this takes lots of time, and I WILL get there!

Today is 43 days alcohol free and a beautiful day to celebrate my other half! The biggest and best present I could EVER give him is my gift of being alcohol free. THIS man has seen me progressively lose myself to alcoholism over the last 20 years. He's seen me at my best and my worst. He's picked me up when I've fallen, cleaned up when I've been sick, protected me from utter shame more times than he should, but he's ALWAYS been by my side. Unfortunately, I've taken this amazing man for granted, but NO MORE! I am forever grateful that he didn't give up on me and for his unconditional love! I will continue to press forward on my new journey with gratitude for the life that God blessed me with...never looking back! I will continue to press forward and live my best life for today!

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