It was an important anniversary for Jessica Simpson. On November 1, the singer and fashion mogul posted a photo on social media. In it, the mom of three looks haggard and puffy-eyed, dressed in sweats and staring into the distance. “This person in the early morning of November 1, 2017 is an unrecognizable version of myself,” the 43-year-old captioned the shot celebrating six years of sobriety. “I had so much self discovery to unlock and explore.”

On that rock-bottom day, Jessica could hardly imagine how much better her life would be. In the years since, the Dukes of Hazzard star gave birth to her third child, Birdie, now 4 (she joined sisters Maxwell, 11, and Ace, 10), dropped a whopping 100 pounds and saw her marriage to former football pro Eric Johnson, 44, blossom. “She’s totally recalibrated her life from top to bottom,” an insider tells Life & Style. “Health, fitness, romance, parenting, work — and it makes her so proud.”

Party’s Over

First there was shame. In her 2020 memoir, Open Book, Jessica recalled the night before that hungover 2017 photo. It was Halloween and she’d had a few drinks. Soon she was too tipsy to take her kids trick-or-treating. “I was terrified of letting them see me in that shape,” she wrote. “I am ashamed to say that I don’t know who got them into their costumes that night.” She took an Ambien to help her sleep. The following morning, she was too embarrassed to face her kids. “I slept in, afraid to see them, afraid I had failed them. I hid until they left, then drank.”

That day, a group of her friends came over and urged her to get help. “I always had a glitter cup, it was always filled to the rim with alcohol,” she later said. “I just realized that I had to surrender, it was time to give it up. I’m not going to miss another Halloween, not going to miss another Christmas. I’m going to be present.”

Coming Clean

The Newlyweds alum credits her sobriety — and subsequent 100-pound slimdown — to hard work and willpower. But the payoff has been worth it. “Her life has totally changed for the better in so many ways and not just physically,” says the insider. For one, her 13-year marriage to Eric is at an all-time high. “They used to bicker a lot when she drank,” says the insider. “Now they’ve learned to communicate better. Jessica is in touch with her feelings and not hiding behind booze anymore.” An added bonus: She’s more interested in romance. “They cuddle a lot more as opposed to sitting on opposite ends of the couch with a wine glass or tumbler of liquor.”

And motherhood has never been more important. “Her connection with her kids and ability to be a good mom when she’s sober versus under the influence is like night and day,” reveals the insider. “The kids have been a huge motivation not to go back to those old habits when she was way less switched on with them and not giving them her full attention.”
All of which the “Irresistible” singer celebrates when she marks her sober anniversary. “It puts her recovery into perspective,” notes the insider. “It’s a huge reminder of what she’s accomplished and why it’s so important never to slip back into that dark old world ever again.”