Thursday, June 22, 2017

6/22/17 (Thurs) Poisoning myself

So I did drink the last 2 nights but only 2 glasses of wine each night.  I was really good during the day - which while on vacation isn't always easy for me. And then dinner comes and I get this, "Well...I will start after vacation - unrealistic to think I could do it on vacation" thoughts. I didn't have much but enough to make me disappointed, tired, bloated and irritable.  Last night I even left 1/2 a glass of wine on the table at dinner - didn't even finish it.  That might be a first ever.  It just didn't taste good and I didn't like the way it made me feel.

I read something in The Naked Mind that stuck with me:

When you stop putting poison into your body, it breathes a sigh of relief.
I really am just poisoning myself. Every time I drink - I poison my liver, pancreas, stomach, brain, esophagus, blood - everything - and why?  Because I am addicted. Alcohol contains ethanol, a known carcinogen, and alcoholic beverages contain at least 15 other carcinogenic compounds including arsenic, formaldehyde and lead.

I thought to myself - if I choose to drink - I will start feeling tried and irritable and it will make me dehydrated which will make me want to drink more, which I will pay the price for the next day.  Is that really how I want this to go?
I have thought about this the last couple of days when tempted to drink.  I have really been trying to play the whole thing through - from the time I take that fist drink until I go to bed, through the night and the next day.  Trying to rely less on immediate gratification and more in long term consequences.  I am trying to really sit with myself while sober and think about how good it really does feel to be sober. To think about how having a drink would change my whole experience of the moment - change my mindset of what I wanted to do next (figure out how to continue drinking). It has worked pretty well during the day, but when we get to dinner, and I know  I will only have two glasses of wine, I change my mind.

I am also noticing how I think I really am mentally physically addicted in terms of feeling grumpy, down, irritable until I have a drink.  It usually takes about 3-4 days before this happens.  I drink on the weekend - many times too much, have to recover for a couple of days and usually by the 3-4 day of not drinking (like on a Wednesday or Thursday), I start getting down, sad, irritable, grumpy, fatigued, anxious.  Then, I am noticing, one of two things happen - either I decide I am drinking on the weekend and perk up in anticipation or tell myself I am not drinking and my negative feelings worsen.  Obviously I choose the drinking path because it makes me feel better.  Who wants to be depressed, grumpy, tired and anxious? I have always thought this is just a response to the upcoming weekend, but I am realizing it is more than that. It is an actual physical response (neurotransmitters in my brain) to not having alcohol (an addictive substance) in my body for a certain number of hours.  It just happens to coincide with a weekend which helps me justify drinking.  It really is like clock work - really no different that the heroine addict who feels completely crappy when craving their drug just to feel better.  I a no different. It is just that my drug is legal and everywhere and accepted. If I had to go to a street corner, in the night, in a bad part of town to get a beer and then drink it in secret - would I continue to do it? I would like to say, Hell No! but I truly don't know.  Am I really any different just because my drug is sitting in my fridge and everyone else is doing it - even expecting it from me all in clear daylight - and romanticizing it.  Making me feel different and left out if I don't.  How ridiculous!!!

Spontaneous Sobriety is when you truly change your perspective on alcohol  - to see it for what it is - a poisonous, addictive substance.
I have been thinking about that - what it does to me, how I really do not enjoy the feeling of being buzzed after the first 10 minutes and how it is destroying my well being.  Trying to look at it from a little less of an emotional lens and more from a "fact" lens.  It is a poison I continue to put into my body - why? because I am convinced I am addicted to it.

The solution is simple - stop putting poison in my body.

Two things happened yesterday - from the mouths of babes.

Me - This wine doesn't taste good and is making my stomach hurt and my head feel weird.
Ds (19 yo) - Then why are you drinking it?

Dd (23 yo) - Maybe you should see a therapist to help you deal with all the shit that has happened to you in the past.  Maybe that would help you stop drinking.
Me (to myself) - Why is she even thinking about that?  Is she worried about me? No one has ever really mentioned my drinking to me before.  Isn't that a sign you have a problem? Plus, I do not want my kids thinking of me in this way.

I want to stop drinking and make them proud of me.  Make me proud of me.


  1. Great post! Day 118 for me after more than 30 years of it. It hasn't been completely easy but I am proud of me (as you say) and I feel sooooooo much better. I've lost 21 lbs, sleep better, and feel a sense of calm.....still cold beer (and lots of them) sound very tempting. I continually tell myself (in my head) many things similar to you post, I.e., it's just poison, it's not worth it, etc, and yes I too feel different and left out (ridiculous is right!). I'm not saying I'll never drink again, I simply say I'm not drinking right now. Good luck & keep posting!

    1. I want to be on day 118 :)
      It is encouraging to hear how much better you feel and the weight you have lost.

  2. You are SOOOOOOOO over drinking babe - it's so obvious and you are well on your way - it's like you are a lamp plugged in with a new bulb and ready to go :)

    Now it is just time to hit the switch
    Michelle xx

  3. Take your daughters advice. It's not a criticism, it's a hand out.

    Sobriety is relief and freedom. I know I probably would have ended up in an alley looking for booze if that what it took. It is no different than hard drugs. And that scared me.

    Choose life. You deserve it.

    1. Seeing how much lack of alcohol makes me grumpy scares me also.

  4. Ah, yes the "thinking it though to the end " tool. It's the tool in my toolbox with the most worn handle. I use this one all the time, even after 1020 days, when the notion of a well-earned cocktail after a hard day creeps in. I just think about how devastating it will be tomorrow to realize I've thrown 1020 days down the toilet. I'm not fooling myself into thinking I can just have one now and then. That's just an empty lie my brain tells me when it just wants to check out for a bit. I know it doesn't really make anything better and I'm just going to feel like shit. So I let the urge pass. It passes much more easily now than it did the first few weeks. Use that "think it through " tool. It's very effective. Sounds like you're developing a real self-awareness around your patterns, and that's super important. Here's to a sober Friday and a regret-free Saturday morning! I'm right there with ya!

    1. My brain just wants me to check it out - lol!