Hours in the Day.
Wow. The days are so much longer now that I’m not drinking.
And they’re awesome (mostly).
Since quitting drinking, I have found that there is time for me to relax (Note: ‘Relax’ no longer means ‘Drinking until I’m foggy and groggy and unable to keep my eyes open.’). And now my relaxing is full of time with my kids, cooking, drinking fizzy water, watching MasterChef Canada, reading, working, cross-stitching, talking with the hubs, going on walks, being with friends, drinking coffee, etcetera etcetera, so on and so forth. *smile*
The anxiety of making sure I have MeTime has almost disappeared. Some days I get antsy for it, but mostly I find things to get invest in and then I’m good. Some days, I take a couple of gabapentin and then I step back into the world and am able to say ‘yes’ to whatever is going on. By the by, for those considering sobriety or in the early stages of recovery (that’s still me, too, p.s. I am not setting myself up as someone who knows it all – definitely not!), talk to a doctor or a psychiatrist about the options you have that could help you stay on the sober path. Honestly, this past summer I only took gabapentin three or four times over the two and half months. Since starting back to full-time work (I’m a teacher), I have taken it five or six times in the past two weeks. It calms my anxiety and tension right around the witching hour time of 5 or 6 o’clock. (To clarify: It’s not my witching hour to drink any longer – I definitely won’t. But it helps take the edge off of that coming home from work tension so that I can relax and be with my kids and not be drunk or in an altered state.) And what I love about my psychiatrist is that she was so nonjudgmental when she prescribed it. Her point was she wanted to give me all the help she could so that I would stay sober. In fact, when she first gave it to me, I was the one who was all judgy-judgerson about it. But now? (And considering what my friend told me in one of his responses to a blog post awhile ago – ‘You’re still sober, right? Who the fuck cares how you stay there? You’re sober!’) I agree with my shrinkydink and my friend. I Am Sober! And sometimes I need a little extra help, and that’s okay.
So, that was a long paragraph to really just tell you not to be scared to ask for help. Perhaps in a way you wouldn’t necessarily consider. (I know I hadn’t!)
And? I will say my goal in the coming month is to taper off using gabapentin as I find my new balance with the school year and all that is going on. I had so much freedom to create my day this past summer. It truly felt perfect. While I am in love with my job, I do need to figure out how to ‘be home’ when I get here. And without the habit of drinking as soon as I walk through the door, it feels like discovering a new world, which really? It is. I’ve been at my job fifteen years, and almost every day of that work life, I sought a drink as soon as I possibly could after work. That’s a lot of Habit to reconfigure, untangle, and rewire.
So? Back to my newly discovered hours…. Last night, for the first time in four years, the hubs and I stayed up after the kids went to bed and watched a Lord of the Rings. (I’m a dork.) And? It was awesome! I kept checking myself and just noticing that I was still awake and still engaged with him, with the movie, and yep! All systems go. …. We’ve tried watching a movie several times before in the past year, but I was drinking, so I would pop upstairs to fill my glass countless times, then within the first hour, I would usually start listing to one side, or falling asleep because I was chugging the wine so fast. Granted, I was always happy and thinking ‘We’re being adults! Yay! UsTime!’ But my stupid brain would equate that with drinking, so I would drink and drink and drink s’more. And those date nights always ended early because I would start snoring, and/or I would try to hide how drunk I was and stumble upstairs to go to bed, blaming it on a long day or something like that.
Watching movies (awesome movies like LOTR) is SO much better sober!
Last night I was talking with the hubs about being sober and how it feels like I have to relearn how to do everything. I feel like I’m waking up for the first time and seeing the world again for what it is – and everything is new and different. I know my mood stabilizer is doing some of the work (especially now that I am sober and it’s able to function correctly), and that is great. It makes me feel great. But I also know that so much of this feeling is because I am sober. My body isn’t sluggish or bogged down with tired. I’m not grey any more. I’m all sorts of different colors. I really feel like I have woken up from a long, spindle-pricked sleep full of horrible dreams and dragons. Now I feel like I am carrying a sword and could kick any dragon’s ass that might come my way.
My favoritefavorite thing? Instead of having a cottonball-brain, it’s clear and rested. This is going to sound weird to some of you, but for the past ten years, I haven’t been able to listen to music much on my own. Never in my car. And definitely never when I was in conversation with someone. My brain could not filter one thing from the other. It drove my music-worshipping-hubs batshit crazy. And now? As I type this! I am listening to music. I listen to it Every Day. And I LOVE it! I forgot how much I love it. I just think it is the craziest thing in the world that I couldn’t listen to it for so long. I was physically unable to. And now? *angelssing* Music is on all the time. So happy to have it back in my life. I missed it. Truly.
Off to spend a day (my favorite day of the week, p.s.) with my beautiful fam.
Day 82, we be jammin’.