In keeping with the theme of sharing my story in hopes that it will somehow help my faithful readers, here’s my latest story.
On March 23, I was arrested for DUI. I spent 7 hours in jail, had my license suspended, & generally had the shit scared out of me. Those 7 hours in jail were the most terrifying hours of my life to date, no exaggeration. Fortunately, I found an attorney very quickly and she advised me of how to proceed while I waited for my day in court. I made it clear I didn’t want to go to trial, I wanted to settle. Over the past 2 months, I’ve gone to DUI school, been evaluated by a drug & alcohol counselor, taken alcohol & drug education classes, been to AA meetings, started 40 hours of community service, and found out who my friends are. I saw just how amazing my friends and family really are. Near and far, I got hugs, words of support, and cards that brought tears to my eyes. I’m one damn lucky girl to have these people in my life. I also got to see who I could cut out of my life and not miss. Fortunately, that was only one person. Everyone else showed me they’re more than worth it and they thought I was worth it, too.
I had my final day in court yesterday and got everything officially resolved. I have to go to a MADD victim impact panel, but that was the only thing I wasn’t previously aware of. I have until November to complete my community service, but my goal is to wrap those up by the end of the summer. I’ll have a limited driving permit until about that time, too. It means I can drive to work, school, doctor’s appointments, treatment sessions, and other necessary trips. My fines ended up being twice what I thought they were going to be, but I’m allowed to pay that in installments. I’m required to report for probation for 6 months, so I’ll grace the good officer with my presence once a month and give him a check. Once I’ve completed everything and 6 months is up, I’ll be put on non-reporting for the last 6 months. I haven’t gotten a final word on if I have to attend AA meetings, but I’m hoping to speak to the counselor who evaluated me and get those taken off. I have a private therapist. I go to other group therapy sessions. It’s long since been determined that alcohol is a symptom, not the problem. All told, I’ll have the heavy lifting done by August and everything done right before Christmas.
So, what did we learn from all this? I learned that I’m a hell of a lot stronger than I thought I was. I learned that I can navigate a stressful, traumatic, terrifying situation gracefully and like an adult. I learned that I can laugh about it because that’s a way better coping mechanism than drinking. I learned that of all the jurisdictions to get arrested for DUI, I was in one of the best. I learned that I am not, in fact, cut out for a life of crime. I learned to never take my bed for granted ever again. I learned that no matter where they are, the people who love me are 100% behind me. I learned that it’s time to treat the real problem instead of continuing to ignore the symptoms. What’s the real problem, you ask? Well, that’s another story for another time.
I hope that something in here was of use to you. It’s never a waste if someone can benefit from my experiences. I will never find myself in this situation again. But I am patenting the DUI Diet. I’ve lost 13 pounds in 9 weeks without even trying. Though I don’t think I’ll repeat it. No, once was enough, thank you.