Being Imperfect is Perfectly Okay



Today is my one thousand eight hundred and sixtieth sober day! That is a hell of a lot of sober days!


What a wonderful, messy, rewarding, illuminating, difficult, satisfying bunch of days they have been. Every single one of these days I have woken up gloriously free from a hangover. And every single one I have finished by laying my sober head on the pillow. Yay for me.


That’s not to say that all of these sober days have been fun – far from it. 


It’s Not All Fun and Games… 

Some days have been dreadfully emotional and draining.


Some have been tense and stressful.


Some have been introspective and teary.


Others have been argumentative and fraught.


I’ve had days when I’ve eaten so much crap food it would kill a baby, days I’ve spent entirely lost in negative thinking spirals, and days I’ve acted like a complete bitch to everyone around me.


 At Least I’m Sober…

On those days the only consolation was that I started them with no hangover, and finished them with a clear head. (That is one of the best things about living sober – you always have the ‘at least I’m sober’ thought to fall back on!)


I’ve also had days when I truly felt like I was living the dream. Not the dream where I have loads of fancy material possessions or reach many career milestones, but rather the dream of living in a truly happy and content way.


In sobriety I’ve experienced days of calm contentment that money can’t buy (and booze could certainly never create).


I’ve experienced days of pure happiness that felt incredibly peaceful and golden.


I’ve experienced days where I’ve been fully grounded in my momentary experience.


And I’ve had days when I’ve connected with other people in really special ways, and boy does this always fuel my soul.  



Letting Go… 

Slowly over time, as each of these days has come and gone, I have gotten to know myself and my mood swings a whole lot better. I have learned to accept my differing emotional states a whole lot more. And I have learned to let go of any perfect (unrealistic) visions of what my life should look like.


So now – at day 1860 – I fully accept that some days are going to be stressful or tearful or argumentative or fraught. That’s ok. I know that I am highly likely to self-sabotage on those days with bad foods or negative thinking spirals or too much crap TV. And that’s ok too. I accept that I am a normal woman with a messy range of human emotions navigating this ever-changing, highly challenging experience called life.


I am far from perfect, but I now know this is perfectly ok.  I’ll forever be forgiving myself for my imperfections and moving forward because treating myself with kindness is my No. 1 recovery tool. 


I’m not boozing and numbing and avoiding, I’m facing every day in the raw, meeting every high and low with a clear head and a brave, honest intention. And I’m ok with that.



Lotta Dann drank alcohol steadily and heavily from the age of 15 to the age of 39. She stopped drinking only when her habit had reduced her to a sloppy, miserable mess and it became apparent she had no control over her intake. She wrote her way sober with the help of an anonymous blog called 'Mrs. D Is Going Without', which started out small but slowly turned into something incredibly large and powerful. Her memoir 'Mrs. D Is Going Without' was published 3 years after she stopped drinking. Now happily sober, Lotta spends her days parenting and running a busy household, promoting recovery through her blogs and social media accounts, and managing the Living Sober NZ website. She lives in Wellington, New Zealand with her husband, three sons and a Labrador puppy. Lotta's book 'Mrs. D Is Going Within' was published in June 2017. And her newest book, 'The Wine O'Clock Myth: The Truth You Need To Know About Women and Alcohol' is available now. .