On being confronted with the past me

Cecilia 19860001

This is a photo of me in the summer of 1986. I was 27 coming up to 28 in the photo and I’m stood on Clifton Suspension Bridge in Bristol. I’d moved there with my husband in May that year and I really love the city. It’s was a different one than the one it is today – less pretentious and more honest.

I was a heavy drinker then but could always stop when I wanted to or needed to and never really saw my drinking as much of a problem though, with hindsight, it was.

Cecilia 1989

This is me in 1989, almost three years after the photo above was taken. I was 30 going on 31 and felt like a hundred years old. I had gone from being a heavy drinker to a full blown alcoholic. Two years after this photo was taken my (now former) husband almost died as a result of his drinking and I was told if I didn’t smarten up my act I had two years to live.

What struck me so much was how I changed physically. I’d went from a healthy sized woman with a happy face and relaxed demeanour to a thin, old woman in a matter of three years.

Twenty four years have passed since those photos were taken and seeing them today has reminded me of how much I don’t want to be the woman in the second photo and exactly how much I have to lose. I’m not talking hard assets but of love and respect but by others and of myself. Sometimes it’s good to look back as long as we don’t stare too hard.