Saturday, November 3, 2012

94 days

Well it has been 94 days since I have drank.  I feel mostly good about it.  Once in a while I have a craving or an inclining, like when we were carving pumpkins or at a huge neighborhood Halloween - I am talking multiple house with tents, appetizers and adult beverages - plus the weather was beautiful!  I would have killed for a Halloween like that in the past.  I lived for those Halloweens in the past - an excuse to drink on a weeknight with a bunch of other festive people who are drinking on a weeknight. I would also pay the price the next day with feeling like crap and feeling guilty about changing a holiday for my kids into a holiday for me to get smashed!  My focus was always on my kids, but many times it was equally if not a little more about me and my need for a drink.

One Halloween, I decided I would drink a few beers before trick or treating and thought it would be fun to ride a scooter around with the kids.  Well, I fell face first in a driveway!  Of course I blamed it on a crack in the sidewalk, got up, laughed it off and had another beer.  I was always excited when someone would invite us in for a "beverage" and we would stay a little longer than we should have. The kids were tugging at my arm trying to get me to do more trick or treating.  I never showed it, but was always a teeny bit annoyed, which is ridiculous bc it should have been about them!
Another Halloween, I took longer than I should have "getting ready" bc I was actually upstairs, slamming two beers down.  I wanted to a decent buzz going before trick or treating bc I didn't want to be that parent that walked around with a red solo cup - I am a teacher in this neighborhood for God's sake!  I didn't know how long it would be before I would be "invited in" for an adult beverage.  I usually wanted my dh to stay home and pass out candy so I could be out and about, distracting myself enough to keep drinking.  I didn't want to sit around by myself passing out candy, drinking - that might mean I have a problem!

As the years went by, I started noticing that many parents weren't drinking at all!  I just thought everyone did. Speaking of being a teacher,  I wouldn't even take kids in my class that lived in  my neighborhood because I was to afraid that they or their parents would "judge" me or tell stories at school about what a "party girl" I was.  It is amazing how many decision I made revolved around alcohol and how much in denial I was about that.  I just said that it would be too hard to know the kids and parents in a social and professional way - but really it was about the partying.

I think what is really different for me this time is looking at the bigger picture.  In the past I was getting so frustrated with not feeling fantastic right away, that I think I just gave up and wanted to feel "good" on a weekend and drank.  I have been reading a lot that talks about how long it takes for your body to recover from the years of abuse.  I usually only drank on the weekends, but at least 2 times a month I binged enough to feel terrible the next morning.  My body was in such a cycle of Fri and Sat night - drink, Sun and Mon -  be wiped out, Wed - feel better, Thurs - start getting excited for the weekend to be able to drink - over and over and over for years.  It had become who I was, what my focus was. If I couldn't drink on the weekend I was bummed.  But, as I got older, I could tolerate it less the next day both physically and emotionally.  I was killing my spirit, my patience, my gentleness, my compassion.  I was becoming very selfish, self absorbed, depressed or party girl hyper, my anxiety level was through the roof.  I was starting to become that drinker that would pick fights - I never used to be that person.  I was starting to sneak drinks and lie about how much I had had.  And my denial was ridiculous - it must have been something I ate, I must be getting sick, it must be the weather.  I had an excuse for everything in my own mind...from why I felt like crap to why I was just so exhausted during the weekend.

I am not feeling well again - heart palpitations again, headaches, grumpiness, overwhelmed, anxious, seriously distracted all the time, can't seem to multitask like I used to.  In the past this would have driven me to having a couple on the weekend.  I said until Halloween - I made it!  Yeah me!  Now let's celebrate - WITH A DRINK! That just sounds so ridiculous (yet still appealing).

The only way I am truly going to repair the damage I have done with weekend binge drinking is by not drinking for a very long time.  I am starting to look at it like when I quit smoking.  Just one cigarette (or beer) and the last 93 days are for nothing because I will be starting all the way back at the beginning. I just need to give myself the give of time

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for the post. It can be really hard putting your life together. I found holistic clinics that really changed things for the better.

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