Our Keepsake Journal is Here! 🎉

I was out shopping with my 10-year-old back in January of this year. As we looked over the extensive mug selection, Olivia asked me why I had been drinking so much tea lately. I explained that I was slowly getting myself used to having a nice relaxing cup of tea at night instead of my usual wine, as a new healthy habit. Then, this adorable pair of mugs caught my eye. I quickly grabbed them and held them up with a smile for Olivia to see. She looked them over and then her eyes lit up as  she said, “Maybe it will help if I sit with you, mama, and have my hot chocolate in the little one while you have your tea in the big one!” 

And my heart burst. 

“Yes, baby, yes it would help,” I graciously said as we loaded them into the cart. 

You see, I was two months freshly sober, and hearing the excitement of my precious girl’s support really warmed my heart. 

RELATED: I Was Drinking My Way Through My Children’s Firsts

Now, at eight months sober, I’ve had a few friends ask me (and I’m sure others may wonder) what I have told my children about my drinking. 

Here’s the thingeven before I openly admitted I had a problem, they saw. 

Their sweet little eyes saw their mother, on edge after a long day, crack open a bottle of wine for relief. 

Their sweet little eyes saw their mother then rely on that wine to get through dinner time, bath time, bedtime.

Glass, after glass, after glass. 

Their sweet little eyes saw their mother buy into the whole “mommy needs wine” culturesporting T-shirts, wine glasses, sharing posts, etc.all supporting the unhealthy coping mechanism of using a substance to deal with the stress of a busy life with children.

Their sweet little eyes saw their mother changebecome irritable, tired, edgy, moody, more anxious, less alive, less patient. 

Their sweet little eyes saw their mother, despite all of these negative consequences, become scarily dependent on alcohol.

So, you see, the important part isn’t necessarily what I tell my children about my problematic drinking; unfortunately, they saw all of that with their own eyes.

Instead, it’s what they see now in my sobriety that matters most to me.

Their sweet little eyes see their mother openly admitting that she had a problem and needed help.

Their sweet little eyes see their mother lace up her sneakers, pop in her earbuds, and hit the pavement for a long run after a tough day. 

RELATED: What if Mommy Doesn’t Actually Need Wine?

Their sweet little eyes see their mother rely on her faith and God’s never-ending grace to carry her one day at a time. 

Their sweet little eyes see their mother beating the relentless disease of addiction. 

I am certainly not proud of a lot of my past actions; however, I am thankful for the opportunity to show the four sets of little eyes that watch me every day that even when we face challenges in life and our light starts to dim, that if we look deep inside, we will each find the ability to overcome and shine brightly once again.

To all of you out there struggling in one way or another and feel the pressure of things that feel too big and too heavy to handle, I see you and I’m rooting for you too.

Here’s to the sweet little things in life, friends.

Originally published on the author’s Facebook page

So God Made a Mother book by Leslie Means

If you liked this, you'll love our book, SO GOD MADE A MOTHER available now!

Order Now

Check out our new Keepsake Companion Journal that pairs with our So God Made a Mother book!

Order Now
So God Made a Mother's Story Keepsake Journal

Vanessa France

Vanessa France is a mom of 4 children - ages 13, 12, 10, and 7. After struggling with her mental health and losing herself in alcohol addiction - she is now 2 years+ sober, and recovers out loud in hopes to help others that may find themselves in the grips of the lonely world of addiction in motherhood. She is co-owner of Zen Yoga & Wellness, a yoga and wellness center that focuses on total wellness in mind, body and soul; where she loves to share the life-changing practice of yoga that is paramount in her healing and recovery. She is an autism advocate, helping to raise awareness and acceptance of neurodiversity in any way she can. She is fueled by her faith, family and fitness; all which help carry her through her sobriety. Facebook: www.Facebook.com/VanessaFrance Instagram: www.instagram.com/_vanessafrance_

When You’re Spending Too Much Time and Money Shopping and Drinking, You Vow to Stop

In: Living
woman shopping online www.herviewfromhome.com

I don’t usually make resolutions, but it’s been an unusual couple of years for me and my marriage. Two whack years, after which I’ve arrived at being resolved to quit using alcohol as a crutch to hobble through life on. And to stop trying to buy happiness, worthiness and other good feels. Because whenever I try to curb my drinking, I start to spend money. And eat pie. Owing to finding myself in the unexpected and unwelcome position of having to recover from my husband’s choice to have an affair during a time our relationship barely even qualified as friendship, I hit a...

Keep Reading

To My Alcoholic Friend

In: Health, Journal
To My Alcoholic Friend www.herviewfromhome.com

Dear Alcoholic Friend, How did this happen? And why? What was the cause and when did it all go so wrong? Who knew and who didn’t? Where are the answers? Questions are all I have, so can I ask you another? When did one drink become just the first drink? When was another drink (and another) a necessity, instead of a want? When did one more cocktail turn into two, three, and four? When was there never a last drink? How did it all become too much? How did the darkness of depression set in? How did I not recognize...

Keep Reading

The Scars of Growing Up With Alcoholic Parents Still Sting

In: Grown Children, Living
Woman looking from balcony

Alcoholism is a storm that spares no one in its path. This disease invokes pain upon everyone around the alcoholic no matter how old they are, how much money they have, or how nice their family may appear on the outside. Alcoholism leaves lasting effects on children long after they grow up. I know this because I am the child of an alcoholic. I didn’t know what an alcoholic was when I was a child. I also didn’t think there was anything wrong or unusual about my life. In my case, I was lucky that my father was a functional...

Keep Reading