Kate's Blog

2018 In Review: Our Alcohol Free Highlights Of The Year

I’m not normally one to brag, but I think today’s blog might just be my best one of the year!

It’s not because I’ve written anything special – in fact, I’ve hardly contributed to this at all.
Instead, I asked some of the women who’ve taken my Getting Unstuck course to talk us through their alcohol free highlights of 2018.
They’ve each shared a picture that sums up their favourite sober moment from the past 12 months.
The result? A really, really inspiring read!
You’ll love reading this if you’re thinking about taking a break from booze in the new year, or you’ve been wondering what an alcohol free life is *really* like.
(And if you’re heading into your first ever AF Christmas and you need a bit of motivation, this will definitely give you a boost)

2018 In Review: Our Alcohol Free Highlights Of The Year


“This picture is everything!! My first grandchild. I was about 2 months sober at the time and am now at 8 months AF. The picture was taken at 4am and I never would have been there sober, present and grateful if it weren’t for your course.”


“My daughter and I did a 5k obstacle colour run. I am 64 so not bad for an old girl and I certainly would not have been able to do it if I was drinking!”


“I went to Colorado with a girlfriend for a fun alcohol free weekend and we went hiking at Rocky Mountain national park. Here is my ‘yay, I am AF pose!’”


“Going on my first AF holiday in February after quitting in January and realising I wasn’t just AF but I was actually enjoying it… this pic is me arriving at the hotel, still in my travel clothes waiting for our room to be ready after a long flight and a hellish taxi ride and my first thought was ‘I need a drink’… and choosing a lovely mocktail.”


“This was my first AF vacation outside the US. Getting my passport stamped used to be an excuse to drink and party, but last summer I spent 3 weeks in Nova Scotia and Quebec completely AF. It was much more fun because I was present for everything, and I came back rested instead of wrecked and resentful. Looking forward to the next one in Scandinavia in March. 150 days AF tomorrow!”


“Partying sober at my local Pride festival! 🌈 ❤️ I danced my socks off to a Dolly Parton tribute singer, laughed so hard & generally had a blast. Then I got to leave when I wanted, drive myself home & wake up with a clear head the next morning 😁”


“I was accepted into Physician Assistant school, at the school I wanted! If it hadn’t been for quitting alcohol, I would never would have gone for this dream!”


“I ran a 5km muddy dog challenge with my springador, Meg. An amazing achievement for 2 reasons…1) I am not, nor will I ever be, a runner and I wanted to see if I could at least run 5km; 2) I did it on my own! Surrounded by strangers! And it was a lovely experience to simply rely on myself.”


“I was broken hearted after losing one of my lovely golden retrievers at the end of August. Yet I’m glad I was AF through her illness as I was able to be there for her. I still have her sister Poppy, and 6 weeks ago Ruby joined us! She’s now 16 weeks and it’s essential for me to be AF to manage her. Poppy and I are really enjoying having her – I wouldn’t have contemplated getting a pup if I’d still been drinking.”


“My highlight was being at my two friends weddings, sober and present, enjoying the whole event from start to finish… no regrets or forgetting all the fun stuff that happened.”


“I don’t have a specific highlight, but the biggest change is the time I spend with my family. I’m so much more present and willing to help out now. We have sleepovers all the time with our nieces and nephew. I was able to fly down and spend time with my Gram for her 87th birthday and see my mom. We adopted a new dog. None of this would have happened had we been drinking.”


“My AF highlight was when I did trap karaoke in front of hundreds of people! I was nervous and I almost didn’t perform, but I was persistent and got on stage! It was so exhilarating and fun!”


“My sober 50th birthday party!”


“Completing the national 3 peaks challenge in under 24 hours (23 hours and 51 minutes). Ben Nevis (Scotland), Scafell Pike (England) and Snowdon (Wales) ❄️ This is me near the summit of Ben Nevis in June with snow.”


“My visit to Barcelona was booked and paid for by money I would have wasted on wine. I fell head over heels in love with this city and embraced all that it had to offer – I had adventures rather than sitting in bars. The best bit about being sober is seeing these things with fresh eyes and a clear mind. What’s not to love about colourful fountains dancing to cheesy 80s music!”


<< Click here to find out more about the Getting Unstuck course >>


Let me know…

What’s been your alcohol free highlight of 2018? If you’ve got a favourite sober moment you’d like to share, I’d love to hear about it!

Hi, I'm Kate

I founded The Sober School to show you there’s another way out of your shame that doesn’t involve AA or rehab. 


30 responses

  1. Wow, loved this! It’s so inspiring for me. I am not quite a month sober so still very early days for me and I don’t have much to share yet. Id say my highlight so far has been a meal with family this weekend. I was dreading it and spent a long time wondering what I’d tell everyone. I must’ve worried about it for a week at least. Anyway, it was fine! No one commented on me not drinking and because I was sober I ended up having a really good conversation with my niece. It was a small thing, but it felt like a win to me.

    1. That’s definitely a win! Having proper, meaningful conversations – when you’re clear headed and fully present – is so good. Many congratulations on almost hitting the one month mark! Those first few weeks are some of the toughest, so well done. Keep going! 🙂

  2. Loved this — especially seeing women in their 50s and 60s making a fresh start — as I’m trying to do. No big highlight for me other than really being there for my kids. Thanks for the great post!

    1. That sounds like a great highlight to me – being there for your kids is a pretty big deal 🙂 I’m glad you enjoyed the post Edana!

    2. In My 50’s need a fresh start or I will lose a daughter to be married in OCT and all that comes with having a daughter……..

  3. My 5 year old great grandson is staying with me the week after Christmas, and this year I am looking forward to it. Last year I was not AF and I was guilt ridden the whole time he was here. I have been AF since Jan. 2, 2018.

  4. These pictures are all lovely. Inspiring to see you all embracing and enjoying life — not like me who at present is still stuck in the trap!
    Trying AF days, but its still a struggle and I barely manage to string 2 AF days together. Looking forward to January and the getting unstuck course. Wish it was starting sooner…..
    Keep up the great work girls, it is encouraging and heartening to see and hear your stories xx

    1. I’m with you! Happy to start in January too. Been trying to be AF and I find if I keep really busy during the bewitching time, it helps. Been going to bed early and getting some really good sleep! I just keep trying everyday. Only been a week but just look at it one day at a time. I don’t like hangovers!

  5. Awesome blog post! I am still early in (an Oct ‘18 grad) but have been loving all of the hangover free days, especially during the holiday season. Looking forward to a sober Christmas.

  6. This is a fantastic read – thank you for the wonderful post – alcohol is completely pointless and getting rid of it is truly amazing .

  7. So many…still,,,,years in…so choosing two-my daughter being confident in inviting me for dinner with others knowing i will bring promised food and be safe on he 150 mile round trip with no public transport; and a reunion with former colleagues who hadnt seen me for 18 years and couldn’t get over how well i was/looked- thriving not surviving

  8. Thank you so much for sharing these inspirational moments! I have been AF for a little over 4 months and am looking forward to continuing this journey into 2019. One moment that really stands out so far is that I was really able to enjoy a camping trip I took with my boyfriend and his parents. I did not even miss alcohol, and enjoyed hot cocoa and several games of dominoes. It was great.

  9. I am nearly a month AF (I’ve not been counting as I have in the past, rather than calculating and factoring in dates because I’m so busy). I still feel fatigued some days but i feel more present than ever in my kids’ lives. I work, take my kids to their sports/extracurricular activities, and try to be more mindful about due dates and special occasions and things that come up in school. I realized how much time I’ve probably missed being the lush mommy and am now trying to enjoy and savor every moment as a sober ‘af’ mommy. I’ve also replaced bad habits (stopping straight at the gas station for a six pack) with good ones (going straight to the gym instead). I can’t wait to feel good enough to do things I’ve put off, like go back to school, and take my family on a long overdue vacation that I might actually be able to save up for now that I’m not wasting money on beer or wine.

    1. The money you’re saving will add up in no time, I’m sure. You’ll be able to use it for all kinds of fun sober treats! 🙂

  10. Quite simply WOW! Inspirational, informative and comforting 🙂 I’m now 24 days AF and am enjoying every moment, heading towards my AF Christmas in decades.

    1. Hi Corrina,
      I am on day 24 as well and headed into my first AF Christmas in decades as well. Thank you for sharing – WOW – is right! It feels good! Enjoy every moment – I know I am – even on the tough days.

  11. I will be 4 months AF on Boxing Day! I am loving every minute of my new found freedom. My highlight so far is the internal clarity of it all. I have never been happier. I am having the most fun and accomplishing more than I ever thought possible. I absolutely don’t miss my old habit.

  12. Hi Kate.
    I have been following and reading your articles/blog.I have always postponed sobriety but this year i had to decide to be sober for the sake of my health,my new job and hopefully a new romance.
    I know that it will take a lot of effort on my part but i am ready to do it.
    Thank you for the great work that you are doing.
    Here’s to a Sober 2019!!!!!

  13. 10 weeks AF.
    Feeling very good. Good energy, sleeping better. Enjoying life, feeling free.
    However, the cravings are bothersome. I could easily relapse.

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