April 4, 2022 – Using alcohol as that escape became the reality for many Americans during the COVID-19 pandemic. According to the U.S. National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, alcohol sales skyrocketed by 20% to 40% nationwide.

But for Madison, the pandemic provided a vital reset button.

During the shutdown, he was able to assess how drinking affected his life. He said booze led him to make bad decisions, from drunken driving to altercations that put him behind bars multiple times.

“I haven’t been to jail in about 10 years, but all those times I’ve been arrested, I’ve never been sober,” he said.

After a few failed attempts at sobriety, he’s now proud to announce that he hasn’t had a drink in two years — the longest he has ever stopped drinking.

“I think the pandemic did a lot for a lot of people, some good and bad, but for me, it did save my life,” he said.

As we enter a new phase in the pandemic, many people are being more intentional with their sobriety. Initiatives like Dry January — a month dedicated to not drinking — have grown in popularity. 


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