Meredith is a very busy and active wife, mother, attorney and triathlete who woke up after almost two decades of heavy drinking and knew she had to make a change in order to survive. She openly and honestly shares her story with Annie and inspires hope and positivity for not just surviving, but truly living a beautiful life.
The First Time
I had my first drink when I was 17. I went to South Africa for a weightlifting competition because that’s what I did my teenage years. Without a doubt, I remember it like it was yesterday this drink was just a margarita. It transported me. I was somebody else. I felt like someone else. That was the beginning of the end. Immediately, it was something I had to have. At 17, it’s not the easy thing to get unless you have parents with a liquor cabinet, which I did not. I had very churchie parents and non drinking parents. I’d never had alcohol in my life.
A New Experience
I was never around alcohol growing up. It was all very new. Fast forward a little bit to college. College was nothing but a giant binge. There was access. It was really easy to just go to a bar in the late ’90s and just drink till 5:00 AM. And so I did. I had no off button, like none whatsoever. Amazingly, I ended up going, graduating from school, went to law school, still no off button. My off button was really completely not off in law school. It was so, it was so bad.
Worse Than You Can Imagine
People say oh, well how bad was it? For those of us who have struggled with drinking we can kind of nod and say yeah I can understand that. A big ole thing of vodka or a bottle and a half of wine, two bottles of wine, that was standard. That’s just what I did every night. At 24 I quit drinking for a year. It was my year of sobriety. I went to AA, lost 50 pounds and I stopped drinking in April. When I returned to law school in August people did not recognize me. Now I dyed my hair red but literally I was talking to my friends in the hallway and a light bulb went off and he was like oh my god. Meredith?
The drastic change from April to August, my appearance and my attitude, it was enough for someone not to recognize me. That should have been a giant clue that maybe I didn’t need alcohol in my life but it wasn’t. Sadly, I had my year of sobriety and then had an incident that where I was very stressed ou.t I went and had one margarita again.
Wake Up Call
I woke up in 2015, 12 years later, I realized I’d just never stopped. During that time I had a legal career and I did four Iron Man triathlons. Started a blog, wrote a book, had two kids. All of that happened around me. Drinking just was what I did. One day in 2015, I woke up one morning and the kids needed to get to school, lunches needed to get made, life had to move forward. And I did not care. I was just like meh, and I put the covers over my head and I went back to sleep.
Why Is Alcohol In My Life?
That was completely out of character for me. I was the responsible drunk. I drank til passing out but I was up with the sun and taking care of my kids. This particular morning, I did not. I woke up a couple hours later and I assumed my kids got to school, either that or they were missing. There was a note from my husband on the counter and it said you need to get your ____ together. At first, I was like who are you to tell me that? Have you seen my resume? I look amazing on paper. I do all these things. But I knew. That was the first time after almost two decades of drinking very heavily that I dropped the ball. I did it knowingly. That was the first time I started to question if there was a place for alcohol in my life.
Hear the Rest
Listen to the complete podcast to hear about the transformation Meredith has made.
Special music thank you to the Kevin MacLeod Funkorama (incompetech.com)
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