Welcome to VivifyYYC!
Updated: May 7, 2018
If you’re reading this, then you’re most likely starting down the path of calling into question your drinking habits, or maybe quitting them all together -> What my good friend likes to call #sobercurious. It’s a good place to be. It means that you feel as though alcohol is probably starting to creep into parts of your life that you aren’t interested in having it creep into. Or it has its claws deep inside you already, and you’re looking for a major disruption to fix that. Perfect segue into my story and why I started VivifyYYC.
I wasn’t really a huge drinker in high school. I did the typical “drink on weekends with your friends” thing. Fast-forward a few years and a move to Calgary, where I got a job in the ‘industry’ as a bartender. This would span over a decade at various spots throughout the city. That’s a long fucking time in the industry – it should be counted as dog years. 1 year bartenting = 7 regular years. It takes its toll on you. All your friends belong to the industry in one way or another. You’re drinking/partying all the time; weeknights, weekends, weekdays, whenever. And it’s not as if one day you wake up and realize its too much because all of you are kind of in this fog. It’s like aging – you don’t just wake up in the mirror and realize you’re 27, or 35, or 42. It just creeps up on you.
And just like that, alcohol was slowly taking over parts of my life that I really didn’t want it to. I actually had no control over it. I was becoming a mess, unraveled. And because I had never learnt how to deal with feelings or have conversations about being sad or angry or lonely and what it all meant when I was little (we didn’t talk about any of that growing up – just bottle it all up!), what I turned to to deal with really any emotion - good or bad - was to drink. Literally use the bottle to bottle it all up.
It all came to a head last summer. I was drinking more than I ever had, and it was becoming a serious issue. Before, I could “handle” work, life, relationships & friendships, but it was coming to a point where that really wasn’t the case anymore. I had serious doubts in myself - who I was as a person, a daughter, a sister, a girlfriend, a friend. I needed to come up for air, or I was going to drown.
The a-typical avenues weren’t for me. I knew that. What I really wanted was a group of like-minded women who were going through the same thoughts and feelings and situation that I was. Now that I’ve started Vivify, I can’t tell you how many women (and men actually) have reached out to me, and how many of us "sober curious" people there actually are! VivifyYYC is meant to be a safe place for us to talk about sobriety, mental health & overall wellness, and what that all looks like. And what more to life there is than having it revolve around booze. I think the biggest misconception about quitting drinking is that the fun stops there – how can you have fun sober?? Easy Ladies. I’ll show you.
My goal at VivifyYYC is not only to bring like minded women together to share stories and to support each other, but to engage in sober activities that will make you realize there is more to life than sitting on a patio getting loaded, spending $200, forgetting each conversation you had that day, passing out before the sun goes down and then nursing a hangover and missing out on the next day (or 2) completely.
The point of all of this is, you are not alone. There are seriously so many women out there in the same position you are, thinking the exact same thing you are. There is no reason to feel shame or be scared. You have to life your best life because it's the only one you've got, and it’s already going by so fast. xo Kitty