Archive | March, 2013

Some lovely comments on my blog lately!

8 Mar

10:03 pm

I just wanted to say, thanks, friends! I know I haven’t replied to some of them, but I definitely have read them all through and through–and I’m sure you do have some idea, but it’s hard to imagine that you have any idea HOW MUCH they mean to me and support me. I still need it; I think about drinking every day. Doesn’t mean I really want to, or even sort of want to. The support helps.

I’ll update in the next day or so, as I made it to Miami for my “girl” (it would be “girls’,” but there’s just one of me) weekend. I had thought that I might drink–I’m on my own, who would know? BUT, after breezing in and out of two stores–and past many a shelf of good, cheap wine–NAH. It’s just not something I do, am doing. It’s just not my habit.

And, it was EASY to say that to myself, and move on with nary a twinge. Well, maybe one or two, way, deep down.

Yay, me! The practice of refusing to drink, day in and day out, DOES MAKE IT EASIER. It gets easier, and keeps getting easier. For all of you out there who commented and are just starting, it gets better. It really does.

I’ll be charging around on my unicorn this weekend, so if you don’t hear from me until next week, you know why! Much gratitude and love, friends. Go, us! We are superstars. 🙂

I no longer define myself by my drinking

6 Mar

9:51 pm

And, no one else can, either!

Sorry about not posting as often as I usually do, but, I’ve had a lot going on. Nonetheless, I’m still here, still sober, and still thinking about drinking–but won’t–almost every day. I mean, it’d be nice, I guess, to have a glass of red. Mainly, I wonder if I can; and if I would, if I could. The thoughts are momentary, though; it’s just not something I’m going to give up the past 21 weeks (as of tomorrow) of mental work/anguish to do!

I’m definitely feeling like I’m coming out from under some sort of anxiety/depression fog, which has been enveloping my brain and hovering around it since December. I feel better, more confident, and well, more like myself, in general. Nothing has to be perfect, and, if they don’t want me, it’s their loss, is MUCH easier for me to tell myself these days, an almost automatic internal reaction–how it was, and should be; the baseline; normal. Not that I didn’t have doubts and self-confidence issues before, but the older I got the better able I was to channel the Fierce. Since I quit drinkin’, I’ve just felt…really unsure. Annoyingly, frustratingly so. More and more, decisions are coming without a lot of back and forth. I can count on myself again, and that takes away a lot of anxiety (which, I guess, I didn’t even know was coming from within).

Drinking was a phase in my life, I see now. I’m now most definitely not in that phase; I’ve grown out of it. Grown up, in a sense. Getting shitfaced messes everything up, and that’s the best it does; I really don’t have the time or desire to mess things up anymore. Drinking to excess has personal and professional consequences; I wouldn’t subject myself to them–and wouldn’t let others take advantage of me while drunk–if I had an OUNCE of self-love. I see that now.

I’m not sure if drinking will be a part of my future, but using wine the way I did–and abusing others and letting myself be abused by others–will DEFINITELY not be. It really is that simple.

I am no longer defining myself by my drinking. And, regardless of what box you fit into (someone I hurt, someone I “lost” along the way to getting sober), I am no longer allowing you to define me by my drinking. (“You” is not, well, y’all, but…well, you know what I mean!) What a liberating revelation! Am I still bitter that some people haven’t forgiven or forgotten, despite my “amends” and apologies? Hell’s, yes! Am I trying to let that–and them–go? You bet. There are SO many people in this world to get to know–that I get the chance to know–to share myself with, to love. And to be loved by. Why would I waste time and effort on those who are still defining me–and our relationship–by my nonexistent drinking? I wouldn’t. And that’s much easier to accept now than it was even a month ago.

I’m looking forward–finally–to most everything. Finally, it’s not an effort to get excited about a trip, a job application, a road race. I can almost look forward to dinners out sans wine–well, let’s not go THAT far. I don’t know if that’s part of the warped-by-wine leaving me, but I think it is. Why? Because it feels effortless, familiar–I remember all the stuff I USED to do that got me excited, wine or no wine. Somewhere along the way, none of it alone could make me feel excited anymore; the only thing I looked forward to, that truly motivated me, was wine. Getting buzzed. Doubly disappointing was that the by-product became mass confusion and destruction.

Anyway, things are rolling along: I’m *this* close to registering for a half-marathon somewhere; I’m heading to Miami this weekend for a solo “big city” adventure; and well, other stuff that’s too personal or boring to share here. Slowly, but surely, things are coming together. I just have to remember to take it easy on myself when I need to, breathe, and ENJOY the silence–wolfie (the voice of craving, that growls, Drink drink drink drink!) has finally shut up, and is cowering in his dog bed over in the far corner. Yes, I gave him a *dog* bed to rub in his now SO-not-alpha status.

147 days tomorrow, which means 33 days until my 6-month goal! Unicorns, set…and GO!!!

20 weeks. Are we there yet?

1 Mar

4:05 pm

I can’t believe I’ve gone 20 FUCKING (oops) weeks, sans The Grape!? HOLY SHIT.

Haha. Faux-drama aside, it’s been hard work. It hasn’t been easy, especially concerning my brief stint in AA and the grappling with all THEIR ideas re: my sobriety versus all MY ideas. I think a few people linked out to Amy’s excellent post already, but I have to say, this line really hit home for me:

Surrender to sobriety. Surrender yourself to strength. Don’t surrender to a higher power- be a higher power. And no, I don’t mean start calling yourself God. But I do mean create a universe. I do mean create days and nights. And light. I do mean make a life. And on some days rest.

YES! Surrender. I really don’t think I have yet. The other day, my boyfriend and I were talking about my last post, which was about how I feel “recovered”–whatever that actually means. Am I? I guess I am. I don’t know. None of that matters anyway. What matters are my answers to the following questions, and how I feel about those answers:

1. Can I not drink without a specific reason to not drink? Right now, I don’t want to drink because: I don’t want to consume the calories; I want to keep running regularly; I like saving money; I NEED to be totes ON–for the indefinite future, anyway–when it comes to building my freelance business (which involves building a level of drive and self-confidence that for whatever reasons, I don’t have right now); etc. Like, if I didn’t have those very good reasons to not drink, would I still choose to not drink? Do I need the either/or scenario to help me blot out the “wolf voice” (which, admittedly, is now a squeak in comparison to the roar it was months back, but it’s still there)? I’ve been thinking about drinking a lot lately, but the reasons not to always win out. BUT, if I DID want to say “Fuck it,” then I might say yes to drinking.

2. Can I drink a glass or two, comfortably? NO. After 20 weeks? Definitely not. I know this, and I know how it will go. I might WISH and HOPE for it to be otherwise, but I know I’d drink the whole bottle. Probably two (and a half, why not, I’ve got new liver cells to kill now), since I’d have to make up for the past 20 weeks. And I’d feel like ass. I’m not afraid, per se, of slipping or relapsing–it is what it is, you drink and then you feel like crap; would it be any different for anyone else, even anyone who isn’t an “alcoholic?” I’m not even afraid of being hungover (or doing stupid shit) as I am of being “back there” again. Of being disappointed in myself, disappointed in a way that I don’t even know yet because I’ve never gone this long sober and fallen off the wagon. Of KNOWING that I gave it all up, and now I have to Start Over. Nooooooooooooooooo!!!

I had a friend of a friend come out to me recently that he is sober. He drank beer; a LOT of beer. I asked him if he could ever drink again, and, he thought about it for about 30 seconds and then said, “No, I can’t. I don’t think I ever could.” It puzzled me then, in my early days of sobriety, why it would take him that long to reply. I get it now. I mull the question over and over in my head now, too. To drink, for me, would mean to want MORE to drink. Which, if nothing else, is annoying. It’s why I didn’t drink on Valentine’s Day: I knew I’d feel WORSE after that glass or two precisely because I’d be jonesing for more the whole time. I’m pretty sure that my distance, so to speak, from drinking and getting drunk does not correlate AT ALL to my distance, so to speak, from my always wanting more. I guess it’s like quantum physics or something: twists and turns, bends and distortions–they don’t make sense, and they don’t follow “logical” rules or linear relationships. DAMN IT.

3. Are you only recovered when you can take or leave booze? Yes. I think so. Will that ever be possible for me again? Uh…I don’t know. There were times in my life, in my 20s before I discovered wine, and how to abuse wine; times when I could take or leave it. I’d hit the bar, have a few beers, then go home. Maybe I was more excited than I remember about this newfound freedom to get drunk after work at happy hour (how things change when you leave college and enter the “work”force)? Maybe I was just much more of a lightweight?

I guess I feel sad–and relieved?–as I get closer and closer to that point (let’s just call it a singularity, the beginning and the end, since we’re on a physics-themed rant!) of no return. Accepting that I may never be able to simply take or leave booze. I might be able to consciously struggle through the experience of drinking wine again, but it wouldn’t be much fun.

Surrender. For me, that has come to revolve around not “giving in” or “giving up,” but accepting–and then, embracing. I embrace not being able to drink in moderation…for the indefinite period that lies ahead. (“Forever” does not compute in my brain.) It’s making a clearing for other stuff to come through, I guess. Like, my sparkle-toothed unicorn, pulling my water wagon, maybe?

Wake up!

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