I started the year sober and even made it through my 50th birthday. I drank one beer in March with my new colleagues at my favorite brewery in the sun on a Friday. I didn't drink again for a couple of weeks and then went on vacation over Spring Break. Had one beer in the airport and then only six beers in the next three days (two each night while making dinner). I never got drunk but just didn't feel well. I wasn't sleeping well, had bad stomach aches, definitely had the "sneaking feeling" while drinking/cooking - trying to hide the bottle and take drink when no one was looking. They knew I was drinking but I certainly wasn't proud of the fact. When asked about it, I just gave my typical response, "I'm fine." I may have said I was fine and even tried to convince myself of that but was having the "panicky/I need to get some alcohol/when am I going to drink/let's hurry to the airport bar before the flight/panicky the waitress is taking too long to bring me the beer...I won't have time for a second/hurry...dh...go to the beer section at the grocery store and get me some beer before the kids notice or I change my mind....HURRY!) I explained the mental and emotional ramifications of drinking here. It think this is a great reminder that even if I am able to keep the amount under control, alcohol still had a profound effect on my mental and emotional well being.
April and May were a disaster. I wrote this is April
Please don't drink this weekend. You are sitting here at 4:00 am on Monday morning feeling bloated, puffy, exhausted and disappointed in yourself. You once again decided drinking would be a good idea and have, once again, paid a steep price. Just a reminder - you were up Saturday night from 3:30-5:30 with a stomach ache, extreme anxiety, hot flashes and heart palpitations. You laid on the couch, ate quesadillas and drank ginger ale, feeling awful, watching Dr. Phil for two hours before you could go back to sleep. Is that any way to live? Were those glasses of wine worth it? You are still not working out because you are recovering from the choices of Saturday night. You have stepped back onto the hamster wheel of feeling terrible on Sun-Wed. Then, just when you body starts to get rid of all the toxins, you start convincing yourself it would be a good idea to re-poison yourself this weekend. You are never going to get in shape, find mental freedom and be the best version of yourself if you continue to poison yourself every weekend.
I wrote this is June after the last time I drank
Went to my sister's house for a party last night. Drank one hard seltzer before I left and then three more there before I switched to wine. Once I switched to wine I just didn't want to stop. My dh asked me to not drink wine and to leave with him at 10:30. I said no and that I wanted to stay and play cards. I just kept drinking and was kinda glad my ds and dh weren't there to watch me. We even opened another bottle and made him come back and get me at 12:00. Needless to say I woke up with an anxiety attack, shaky, with a headache and nauseous. I feel like total garbage. This is the pattern I didn't want to repeat for the millionth time - do well moderating for a while, drinking slowly increasing, finally culminating in a bad night followed by a horrendous hangover.
I finally make my way downstairs this morning and my dh, who is usually really supportive of me no matter what I am doing (moderating/abstaining/struggling), says, "I don't have a lot of sympathy for you today. I tried to get you to leave and to not drink wine." I shoot back, "I'm not looking for sympathy." He says, "I'm getting a little tired of this.....either stop drinking or be an alcoholic! You wanted to stay last night not to play cards but to keep drinking!"
I was shocked and hurt that he said that to me. He has never said anything like that to me before. I just started crying and couldn't stop....not because he said it, but because he is probably right and it is just really hard to hear. I don't want to be an alcoholic. I don't want to stop drinking. I want to be able to moderate and drink like everyone else does.
After I wrote this and swore I would never drink again, 4 days later I felt better and was thinking about drinking that weekend. I finally gave up and called for help. This was followed by six weeks on IOP - Intensive Outpatient Therapy, prescriptions and therapy appointments. I am so I spent my July at Kaiser and did all of that work mostly bc if I think about drinking now, I think about all the time I put in and how it would have been a complete waste of time.
Now I have been sober almost 7 months (January 10). My greatest hope is that I don't write about how terrible I feel bc of alcohol during 2019. I truly want to focus on being more at peace with me and the way I am living. I am incredibly proud of myself for the progress I have made. I am grateful for many things and am going to start writing about how great life is and how grateful I am to be able to live it and enjoy it SOBER!