Sunday, January 20, 2013
I have been sober 172 days and I feel fantastic!
It has been a struggle these last few months but it has been worth it. I am slowly getting through many first - first Halloween, first Thanksgiving, first Christmas Eve, first Christmas Day, first real New Year's Eve (last year didn't really count since I was angry and depressed and stayed in bed LOL! This year we actually went out to dinner and a movie with family and friends. They drank and I didn't and I HAD FUN!!!! Can you believe it! I would have never believed it 5 months ago.) First decorating Christmas cookies, first playing cards with family, first trip out of town with nothing to drink, first ski day in the sun at lunch with no beer, first time at The Melting Pot (one of our favorite fondue restaurants we go to for special occasions) with no wine and STILL ENJOYED MYSELF!!!
I would drink too much 2-3 times a month on the weekends and totally beat myself up until there was nothing left of my self esteem. There was nothing of me left, except how I related to myself in regards to alcohol - waiting for the weekend, counting the drinks, watching the clock, drinking my water, eating, planning, counting, being proud/being angry, being excited/being depressed, looking forward to things (that involved alcohol)/dreading things that didn't, planning parties, having anxiety attacks at 4:00 am, blaming all of my withdrawals on other things, crying in the shower, not keeping commitments, being ashamed of myself, not sleeping well, gaining weight, not going to the gym, wasting TOO MANY Sundays with a hangover, being too sensitive, not having true conversations with people, being the life of the party, worrying too much about EVERYTHING, not remembering things, always needing to be heard, being worried about the example I was setting for my teenage kids, feeling like I wasn't the best I could be, being loud, feeling out of balance, the need to always feel included, always struggling with my inner obsession with alcohol, researching, reading, blogging, charting, counting, analyzing, web surfing, spinning on the endless hamster wheel, ENOUGH!!!!!!!
I am 45 years old today and I choose to no longer let a stupid drug control me mentally, physically, spiritually, emotionally! I have spent far to many years with alcohol by my side - the first 10 with an alcoholic father, 10 years partying and loving it, 10 years watching and noticing and not liking it as much and 10 years absolutely in misery! Not the in jail, losing your job, losing your family kind of misery. I am a well adjusted, well educated professional with a mortgage and a family. Most people don't even know why I quit (the ones closest to me do). The kind of misery that is a silent prison that only you know about - the secret demon that eats your soul up little by little year by year while you are trying so hard to find a way to control it because you just can't come to terms with the fact that you CAN'T DRINK LIKE OTHER PEOPLE! I can't drink like other people and I can't change that.
The thought of quitting is terrifying! How will I ever have fun ever again in my life if I can't drink? How is everything just not going to suck? I had tried and tried and tried and I always got back to drinking too much and having hangovers. The harder I tried to control it, ironically, the stronger it got! It doesn't matter that I wasn't as bad as so and so or I hadn't had this or that happen or lost this or that - I WASN'T HAPPY! I was exhausted! I GIVE UP! I will no longer fight to control something I have can no longer control. Do I sometimes think it sounds terrible to never drink again? Yes! Is the few hours of drinking worth a lifetime of misery the rest of the time? No! Do I think about my summer plans? No, to scary. Do I try to do the best I can today and be the best person I can today? Yes.
45 is going represent freedom for me. My fog is slowly lifting and I am beginning to see all of the joy, peace, love and happiness life can hold without the shackles of a drug and I am grateful.