Jordan found that leaving Las Vegas wasn’t enough to put the party behind her. It took This Naked Mind to end the party lifestyle.
What Happens in Vegas
My name is Jordan, I am 28 years old, and I live in a small town in Southern Idaho. I was born and raised in Las Vegas. Can you imagine? What do you think about when you hear Vegas? Gambling, parties, ALCOHOL? As I look back now, growing up in Las Vegas was very hard. Drinking, partying even HARDER, alcohol and drugs were everywhere as they were normal. Strippers plastered on billboards, alcohol and slot machines in gas stations and grocery stores. It was – and still is – the way of life there.
My parents were 20 and 21 when they had me and from as far back as I can remember, there was alcohol present: birthday parties (for me), Super Bowl Sunday, BBQ’s, pool days, camping, a beer after work for my parents, 19th hole after golf. Holiday parties, summer nights, summer days, beers when going out to eat – I’m sure you get the picture. Then I didn’t realize anything was wrong, it was just normal.
At 4 years old my parents divorced. I remember spending a lot of time at my grandparents. That’s when my dad started heavily drinking. There has been a lot of my childhood that I subconsciously blocked out, but I remember hearing stories over the years of how my grandmother would have to come feed us and put us to bed.
When I was 7 years old my dad was dating a woman and we went over to her house for football Sunday. I was a very anxiety-prone child and I liked my schedule so I could be prepared for school. This was a school night. The football game had ended hours ago and the woman put on the movie Scream for the kids. Me being 7 and my sister only 5, I did NOT think it was suitable for us to be watching. My dad wouldn’t turn it off and I was just ignored. Since my dad was drunk and not paying attention to us, I made a decision to steal his phone, run outside, get in the bed of the truck, and call my mom to pick us up.
My parents didn’t have a very civil divorce and they did NOT speak to each other. She told me to hide in the bed of the truck and she was going to call the cops. Not long after, the cops arrived and when they questioned my dad, he got mouthy and so did the woman. They ended up telling her to take the keys from my dad and to not let him drive. All I could think was “HOW WAS I GOING TO GET HOME!?”
Affected By Alcohol
Scared, sad, and confused, the cops left and the woman drug me to the hallway and pushed me up against the wall, stating “If it was you that called the cops, so help me God”. Sadly, my mom was not allowed to take us with her because it was “His” week to have us, so we spent the night on the floor of some random woman’s house. That is just one story of how my childhood was affected by alcohol, as you can imagine there are many, many more.
Fast forward to high school, my dad was still drinking heavily. My once sweet and innocent 5-year-old sister was now drinking and doing drugs and I decided to take on the habit as well. Throughout high school, my sister and I still managed to get good grades, take honors classes, and play varsity softball. I was varsity dance captain and worked part-time for the city as a Recreational Assistant. Parties consisted of underage drinking that, more often than not, resulted in huge brawls, drinking and driving, blackouts, being chased by cops, other drugs…you name it.
My high school graduation party was held at my dad’s house, of course. Everyone was having fun with alcohol everywhere, beer pong, music – a blast! Little did we know my younger brother was sneaking sips of bottles and cups all night and ended up getting drunk. My stepmom found him in the bathroom trying to cut his wrists. All he wanted was me. I came into the house, cradled this big kid in my lap, and told him everything was going to be okay. (How did I know everything would be okay? I was drunk.) He was heavily abused by my dad when he drank. He called him fruit cake, gay boy, tormented him for being a mama’s boy, and completely tore this kid down. I tried to stick up for him but sometimes I could only do so much.
After I got my brother to bed, I went to the backyard to “shut down” the party and tell everyone to go home. In the meantime, my dad was still drinking and decided to come out throwing things around, pissed off and yelling at me. We got into a huge fight, he threw me against the ground multiple times, I smashed my ribs on the sliding glass door track falling down trying to get into the house. He went on to spray everyone in the backyard with the hose. He came back into the house where he threw me on the couch and sat on me, starting to choke me. I wiggled my way out and bit him HARD on the back, kicked my dad’s bedroom door in where my stepmom was hiding my keys, and took off out the front door. All I could think of was leaving Las Vegas.
Coming into the last couple years, I moderated my drinking pretty well….so I thought. I still went out and had the occasional drink, the occasional blackout, the occasional party, and the occasional fight with my significant other. When I say occasional I mean more than I would like to admit. Not much had changed besides the thought that I had everything under control, but really it didn’t even cross my mind that I had a drinking problem until 2018.
Vacation From Hell
The start of my binge drinking happened when my boyfriend and I booked an all-inclusive vacation to the Dominican Republic the beginning of last year. It started off as the worst trip you could imagine. Lost baggage, flight cancellations, stuck in a different city for a day, plane mechanical issues, the works. When we finally landed at Punta Cana and got to our hotel we decided we missed out on two days of our vacation already so why not start drinking to make up for it. I was drunk for three days with little sleep and one morning I woke up with vertigo. Not just any vertigo, debilitating vertigo, high blood pressure, I couldn’t eat, night sweats, and to top it off I was overseas.
Party Vegas Style
Getting back to the states, I didn’t drink for a while. Things got better until me and my boyfriend of 4 years broke up and I just went crazy. I thought I was FREE! I drank and did “house projects” (that I now have to redo because it didn’t come out very professional). Went out on dates and drank. Started dating one guy in particular and the binge drinking got worse, drinking bottles of tequila out at the bar ($100-$200?); staying in and drinking entire bottles of whiskey.
I was drunk all weekend, recovering for two days, and then drinking an entire bottle AGAIN on a weeknight. I was blacking out 2-3 times a week. Then staying in bed for one to two days trying to recover, wondering where I got bruises from, trying to remember what I did the night before. Beating myself up until the next bout of bingeing. I quit CrossFit because I had no energy. I couldn’t get out of bed to do daily chores. Finally, I stopped caring about everything that made me happy. This went on all summer until December 30th, 2018.
Leaving Las Vegas Behind
December 30th, 2018 I got up, felt great, went grocery shopping with my roommate at the time, and then we stopped for lunch. One beer turned into two, then a couple shots, a few more beers. Followed by ice skating, then another bar, bowling with more shots. Then finally home where my boyfriend was waiting, furious. We got into a huge fight, I left the house and walked around in the freezing cold for hours with no idea what I was doing.
What am I doing?
I woke up December 31st, hungover, feeling depressed, defeated, disgusted with myself, apologetic, and overall fed up. What was I doing to myself, to the people I loved, to my future? I was a mess. I cried and made the decision that drinking was something I needed to quit (something I knew all along but didn’t have the courage to do). Cold turkey. Forever. It was doing me no favors, it was making me depressed, I was making poor decisions, and I was hurting myself and others. This is NOT the life I worked my butt off for just to throw it in the trash for some drink that tastes like asphalt!
Today marks 30 days sober and I think this might be the longest I have ever been without alcohol since I started drinking at 16. The first week was a little rough. I was scared and I was tempted, but now all I feel is determined, happy and excited. Currently, I am still working on some anxiety issues, but in my short 30 days I am no longer depressed. Already, I have read 3 books (one being This Naked Mind) and my full energy has returned. I signed up for school to become a Nutritional Therapy Consultant and I am back to working out regularly. I started to redo my house projects sober and for the final time!! My life has just begun.
Has the time come for you to be leaving Las Vegas in your mind? You can preview the book and learn how to live life alcohol free! Start reading This Naked Mind today!
This Naked Mind hit home to me on so many levels! I’m very health conscious and the fact that for years it never registered that alcohol should be evaluated in my diet is humbling. Was I really THAT health conscious putting poison into my body? It was just a habit and an addiction. My eyes are now open to how alcohol is everywhere – how it’s treated as some higher power! It’s helped me gain an understanding and an entirely new perspective on alcohol and how we have “fun” with it. It’s not fun! It’s terrible and I’m overwhelmingly happy to break up with alcohol.
All of my childhood, as experiences have led me here, I do want to state that this determination and drive isn’t just for me, but for my sister who I miss dearly. She is a meth addict. We have been in and out of rehab with her, I have seen her so high she can’t put a logical sentence together. I can’t even get her to respond to texts and calls. Telling her that she can’t do what makes her feel “good”.
I am doing this for us and for my dad, who still drinks daily. I didn’t have a good relationship with my dad for many years following all the drama that we created by drinking. We have slowly been getting it back. It will never be a true daddy/daughter relationship and it has taken me a long time, but I have forgiven him. Believing that “He did the best he knew how to” has helped. This is no excuse to dismiss what he did to me and my siblings as children, but it helped me move on and accept an apology I may never get.
My dad and sister live together in Vegas and I want to show them we can do this. This isn’t our personality, our genes, or our fate and we are going to win. I am going to show them this can be done and we can live happy, wonderful, fulfilling lives. I will succeed at leaving Las Vegas behind.
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