Miracles and Alcoholics

There are some things you just can’t imagine ever happening and for me that is my mum giving up drinking. She has been an alcoholic for as long as I remember and I never in my wildest dreams thought that she would be able to stop, but miracles do happen!

To give you a bit of background, my mum and dad have known each other since they were 14 and they grew up drinking together, but they have been separated for years. My family are sea gypsies and we all live in different parts of the world, besides my dad and I who live only 10 minutes away from each these days.

Recently my dad was diagnosed with lung cancer and so we decided to have a family get together. Better to celebrate and be together while everyone is still healthy, rather than not. My brother was coming to Australia from the Caribbean with his two kids and we hadn’t seen each other for 6 years and we had never all been in one country at the same time, so I invited my mum to come over too. At first she thought that it wasn’t right for her to come, but with me explaining to her that we were not just getting together for my dad, but for all of us, she agreed to come.

We discussed the fact that I now have a smoke and alcohol free home and she agreed to be sober while here. I thought this was great but didn’t actually think she would be able to cope, let alone what then transpired.

I organised the flights for my mum and booked her to come for 5 nights, and a week before her arrival she had a little panic attack and the anxiety kicked in. She messaged me and asked me to cancel it all and get a refund. When I explained that it wasn’t possible to get a refund, she replied saying she had better sort herself out and get her bum on the plane, which she did with a few deep breaths.

Prior to picking her up, I had a big discussion with my brother as he was quite determined that mum wouldn’t be able to cope without a drink and that he would have to take her to the pub for a beer if things got too much. I explained that my home was smoke and alcohol free and that if they planned on going out for a drink, that was totally fine, but then they would have to sleep elsewhere. My brother, whom I love dearly, didn’t like me very much in that moment, but for me what was important was standing by what felt okay and the honouring of me and my home.

It was one of those moments where I could either be nice and please others, or stay steady in what I felt was true, for everyone. And luckily I am a pretty absolute person.

I picked my mum up from the airport and expressed to her what I had discussed with my brother and to my surprise she said that she had promised to me that she wouldn’t drink and that was what she was going to do. Still in disbelief, I was impressed with her commitment to respect my home and give it a go.

I gave my mum Chakra-Puncture almost every night that she was here, I tucked her into bed and loved her up. It was the most beautiful five nights I have ever had with my mum. She was so adorable and so present. One morning when we all woke up and I asked her how she felt, she responded, “I feel like I am in Heaven”. Another time when I asked her how she felt after a Chakra-puncture session, she said she had never felt so loved.

Now during this time, my dad was hospitalised and it was a pretty sad and stressful time for everyone but even with all of this going on, my mum didn’t drink. My brother, father and I were all amazed that she hadn’t hit the bottle yet. She met my dad’s new partner and made a new friend and still no need for a drink. Seriously, none of us could believe it.

On the night before I was dropping her back at the airport, I asked her, “Mum, when was the last time that you did five nights without drinking?” and her response was, “Probably when I was pregnant with you”. Well, I am 38 so that’s a few years ago! I had always known my mum to have a glass in her hand and now there was so much to appreciate having her with us, sober. My mum had always had a nickname as Chaos, as things could get pretty chaotic when she was 'on one' and it was beautiful to spend time with her with no chaos or dramas whatsoever.

But what is even more amazing is after her 5 nights of being sober here in my home, she went back to her home and she continued to not drink, even though her friends were offering her a drink here and there. It is now 16 weeks later and my mum still hasn’t had a drink! People are in shock. One friend said: “It’s not like you to be sober on your birthday.”

And as the weeks go by, mum is getting more and more compliments as she is looking amazing. Instead of wasting money on alcohol and slowly poisoning her body, she is investing her money in healthy food and taking care of herself like never before.

So if there is anyone whom you think can never change, let me tell you, miracles do happen.

I know it was the support and love that we shared that made possible the miracle of my alcoholic mum giving up drinking, but I also have a huge appreciation for Chakra-puncture, which I know is what supported my mum to feel who she truly is again, and make the changes and the choices to finally stop drinking and come back home, to herself.

Published with the permission of my mum, brother and dad to share this story.

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  • Photography: Matt Paul