This felt like such a long time in the making! Was it all of my new free time? Was it because I was thinking about it so much? Yes and Yes.
About 5 or 6 weeks ago, out of the blue, I just stopped drinking. For 9 days. Every day I would check-in with myself and wonder, ‘Should I have a drink tonight? Should I skip it?’ And for whatever reason, I was completely casual about the whole thing and just… eh. Didn’t drink. It was the first time I’d strung together any sober days in almost 2 years. I think the ‘longest’ I’d ever gone was one day, and even on that one day, I would be hankering and planning for the next day to get here so that the liquor store would be open, or so that I could be home and in my routine because an evening at home always = drinking.
Reading sober blogs from so many others, I keep thinking of that Day 1, and the pain of repeating it over a series of months or years. During my early am jog this morning (even I hate me for saying that), listening to The Bubble Hour, I heard that story again by several women on the show. I never really thought that I had a Day 1 besides that one flukey bit of time I just mentioned above, but then BAM!POW! (It hit me.) I had a millionzillionbajillion Day 1’s – I just didn’t recognize them for what they were. Over the past three or four years, I had countless (i.e. millionzillionbajillion) mornings when I would wake-up and swear ‘I’m not doing that again!’ or ‘This has got to stop!’ or ‘Wow, that was maybe too much. I’m definitely stopping today.’ …. And like the unwitting asshole that I am/was, by evening, I would be bargaining with myself and convincing myself that actually, today was a day worthy of a glass (or 5) of wine, or that it was always more fun to cook and have a beer at the end of a long, hard day at work. I deserved it.
Seriously. SO many Day 1’s.
But the booze was always louder. And more convincing. And kind of cute, which made me feel cute, which by drinking the alcohol made me (ironically) look less-cute, then during the day I would feel self-conscious and bad about myself – both because the alcohol made me sluggish and bloated and hungover, and then after slogging through another day as WonderWomanExtraordinaire, by the evening I would want to forget about… well, Everything – including the crap-crap-crappy self-image I had begun to perpetuate for myself and the way I felt about myself inside, and that is when I would grab for a bottle. And thus the cycle continues.
I am well-aware this is probably the Pink Cloud talking right now, but really. Poor Me. … The image of the snake eating its tail is what comes to mind for me – a self-defeating monster.
But? Now here I am. Day 10. Huh-zah to that.
A few small observations from the last two days….
My son helped with putting the garbage/recycles out last night. When I dumped what was in the house into the larger container outside, there were no glass sounds clinking against one another. Not one. That. Was so cool.
And similar, when I emptied the dishwasher last night, the top rack was completely wine-glass- and my-glass-of-choice-for-drinking-covertly-FREE. I realized (lots of realizations are a-happenin’ lately) how often I’ve jumped to unload the dishwasher so that the hubs doesn’t see how many nights (Truth: All of the nights) I was drinking. ShameFree moment of housework! Oh, yeah! (Cue Kool-Aid Man.)
Alright, lastly. I have to say ‘Thank You’ to those of you who have reached out in the past few days. I am grateful for having eyes looking and seeing me honestly for who I am and what I am striving to do here. I am not ready to tell the Big Wide World just yet, but having this world so close to me and to treat me so gently and compassionately, it truly is a gift – You all are truly gifts. Thank you.*
Day 10. Not a perfect 10, but that suits me just fine.