Day 179: Breathe Easy

Today is a major milestone for me.

Today, I got my breathalyzer removed from my car.

After close to a year, with numerous, and by numerous I mean, over a dozen maintenance issues, inconveniences galore, and time wasted, this damn device is out of my vehicle.

In addition to being thrilled, if only about the eased logistics of driving, it also marks another milestone for me, which is, my DUII was over a year ago now. I completed my diversion program and am officially not a convict. Which is phenomenal. Truly.

As I sit and reflect on exactly what this means to me, I keep returning to the place I was, just a little over a year ago. It was such a dark and lonely time. And, my DUII just compounded all the little messes I had haphazardly tried to hold together. In some ways, it was the final straw. Even though I continued to drink another six or seven months after my arrest, I knew that night. I knew I had a problem.

In the midst of the DUII drama, I didn’t think I was going to survive. I had sunk to a new low, one from which I wasn’t sure that I could bounce back. But, I did. It took me a little bit of time and some serious self appraisal, but, I did.

The breathalyzer was a constant reminder of my crime. My alcoholism. My irresponsible actions. My sadness. Even in my sobriety, every time I hopped in the car, I had to remember just how low I’d gone. But, as time rolled on, starting my car, sober, took on new meaning. I’d never have to worry about drinking and driving, because now, I don’t drink. It’s that simple.

Today, I can get into my car and breathe easy. No waiting. No stress. But, relieved as I am to be free of the nuisance, I’m also grateful for the little reminder that I’ve come a long way. A long, long way, in a relatively short period of time. I’m not the woman I was when I got arrested over a year ago. Today I’m responsible for myself and for the people around me. I’m grateful that I didn’t hurt myself or anyone else back then, because I could have had a more lasting, or God forbid, tragic reminder.

I’m free today. Free from so many of the bonds that tied me down back then.

Today, I can get into the car and drive. And unlike just a year ago, there’s not a distance too great to traverse…

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