Profiles in Recovery

Nancy Carr

Carr considered herself a typical “party girl” — mixing career success with daily social drinking and weekend cocaine binges. Life spiraled out of control for Carr in her 30s, interrupted by two DUI arrests.

Sitting in jail feeling hopeless, Carr’s journey began to evolve. She sought help from Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) and found clarity, “realizing that everything bad that had ever happened in my life was from drinking and drugging,” she recalls.

Carr embraced AA, attending 90 meetings in 90 days. Today, as she celebrates 12 years of recovery, Carr still works with a sponsor and attends weekly meetings. “I’m not who I was when I was out there drinking and using,” Carr says. “I’m human and I’m still learning about living a sober life, but it’s better than it was when I was using.”

Day Job:
Human Resources consultant, sober blogger, author of “Last Call: A Memoir”

What I lost to addiction:
I lost my soul and who I was as a human being. I had no dignity, integrity or love of others, I was selfish to the core and only cared about myself.

At my worst, I was:
Drinking daily, doing blow (cocaine) 3 times a week, using others, spending time with a rotation of men, hiding my real life to others, manipulating, lying, stealing, cheating – and playing Russian Roulette w/my life.

What worked for me:
After my 2nd DUI, I was nudged by my attorney to hit an AA meeting. Grudgingly I went, drank for a week and came back to AA. I had nowhere else to go and didn’t know what else to do. It took and I’m a proud member of AA and Al-Anon today and get to help others and live an amazing life.

Advice to my younger self:
Don’t be scared! Ask for help – look in the mirror! You know you have a problem, stop hitting the snooze button and get help! I lived in so much fear of what others would think and fear of how I couldn’t give up my two best friends, drugs and booze. I wish I knew then what I know now!

Rules I live by:
Gratitude is a muscle. Trust God and the process. Helping others gets me out of myself. Prayer and meditation help me so much – I don’t question it, I just do it!

Favorite recovery quotes:
This too shall pass, and in this passing you will grow.
The will of God will never take you where the grace of God can’t protect you.

On my schedule today:
Prayer and meditation, AA meeting, calling my sponsor, talking to another alcoholic, giving gratitude.

Best advice for newbies:
Do what feels right – go to treatment, go to AA, check out Smart Recovery; whatever it takes and get on a spiritual path. Don’t question it, just do it and follow through!

What I value most in recovery:
My God, my sobriety, my spouse, my dog, sober network of friends, my career and the sober blogging community where I have the ability to help others with my message of hope!

Stigma I faced:
Feeling judged by others. I use a pen name, as there were some that weren’t overly happy – even though I changed all the names in my Memoir. And the stigma that being an alcoholic is a bad thing! It’s the best thing that happened to me and it gave me my life back!

Proudest moment:
Getting and staying sober, ODAAT and becoming a sober blogger/writer and forging on in my recovery each and every day, as it’s truly a gift.

Follow Carr:; on Twitter @NlcarrC

Shed the Stigma:
If you’re a person in long-term recovery who wants to share your
insights, please contact us at [email protected].