Monday, May 10, 2010

Thinking Through the Drink

**Submitted by Amanda, who blogs over at Adventures of a Sober Mommy

I would be lying if I said that I never think of drinking.

When I was first trying to get sober one of the things that bothered me the most was that I wouldn't be able to have alcohol anymore. Like, ever. For real. By that point I couldn't even fathom life without a glass of chardonnay or a vodka tonic. (As a side note - the more blogs I read about women in recovery the more I'm struck by the fact that almost *all* of us drank chardonnay and vodka. After thinking about it I think I know why - chardonnay is a socially acceptable 'girl' drink and vodka? Let's just say that I think there are more than a few out there who think, "Oh, but it's ODORLESS". Don't laugh - I've heard many **including me** say it.)

What was I talking about? Oh yeah, that never drinking again thing. When I was first sober the thought looked something like this: OMGOMGOMG I CAN NEVER DRINK AGAIN? ARE YOU CRAZY? YOU AREN'T? WHAT DO YOU WITH ALL YOUR TIME? WHAT DO I SAY WHEN SOMEONE ASKS ME IF I WANT A GLASS OF WINE? ARE YOU SAYING I CAN'T GO ANYWHERE AGAIN? ARE YOU REALLY REALLY SAYING NONE? LIKE NOT EVEN IN FOOD? WHAT ABOUT A NON ALCOHOLIC BEER? NOT EVEN THAT? WELL THEN TELL ME MRS. RAY OF SUNSHINE COMING OUT OF YOUR BUTT - DO YOU *ACTUALLY* PRACTICE THIS TOO? REALLY? DAMN.

I know that seems a little over the top but seriously, this is how I felt. I felt like someone was taking away something from me that allowed me to function. In reality quite the opposite was true. I wasn't functioning, hell, I was barely living by that time. Still though, deep inside I remembered a life without all the drama, a life that centered around being a family rather than one spent building up walls because honestly? No one wanted to be around me.

It's the insidious nature of this addiction that creeps back into your mind. Just when you think, "Oh, I'm okay - life is good" life turns around and slaps you in the face. For me that's when I have to really step back and reset. It's the time when I find myself going over and over all the good things that *are* in my life right now when I think, "Maybe just one wouldn't hurt". Oh, it would hurt alright, it would hurt a lot. Sometimes I just have to go to bed. Sleep is safe.

I find that usually this feeling comes either when life gets anxious or when I have a dream where I think I am drinking again. Two nights ago I woke up in a sweat because I had a dream where I was drinking. In the dream I was drinking and was terrified that my husband would find out. I was hiding bottles and drinking mouthwash.

It was exactly how I use to live my life.

It's dreams like that and the joy I had this weekend of redecorating my 14 year old's room that stop me in my tracks and make me remember what it was like then and what it is like now.

I would be lying if I said that I never think of drinking.

But I would also be lying if I said that if I did I would lose all that I've built back up.

One more minute, one more hour, one more day.

That's the only way to do it.

At least for me.

7 comments:

  1. Simply beautiful. Even after 2 years of sobriety and on my 2nd run at working the steps (having never made it past step 7), I still wrestle with "the beast" at times. I know it will lessen as time goes by. It's just comforting to know I'm not alone in having these types of thoughts, no matter what the extent. Thank you for your honesty.

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  2. I love this post. I sent it to my husband for him to read too. I used to be ashamed to share things like this with him, but I think that it is getting him to a better place of understanding what I am trying to say and what I am going through.

    What will I do without vodka? I have no freaking clue.

    Bets

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  3. I loved this post - I wrestle with these thoughts, too, even after a few years of sobriety.

    And on the really bad days I use the "I'm just gonna go to bed" trick. Because I've never woken up the next day and wished I had had a drink the night before. Never.

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  4. Thank you for this post. As someone who is on Day 3 of living sober, it helps to read blogs such as this to give me hope that I to, can do "life" without vodka.

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  5. Thank you for writing this. Couldn't agree with you more.

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  6. I can so relate to everything you wrote. I wasn't living. I drank white wine and vodka because it wouldn't stain my clothes or carpet when I inevitably spilled it or sloshed it. Guaranteed. Every night. But on pasta night I had red. Of course. Red wine goes with pasta. (I also drank mouthwash. I'm not sure what gourmet meal Listerine goes with.) When my disease starts talking like that, I need to remember what my then 6 month old's onesie looked like with red wine stains on it. Thank you for the reminder!

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  7. "Sometimes I just have to go to bed. Sleep is safe." I'm on day 7 after a ridiculous 22(ish) year (functional?) drunk, and I can't believe how much glorious sleep I've had in the last week. Not only is it healing and safe, but it's just so wonderful to actually be ABLE to sleep. No ringing ears, pounding heart, sweating, insomnia, nightmares, panic attacks, headaches, nausea, spins, heartburn, muscle cramps, thirst... I could go on. Sleep is safe. Yes, yes it is.

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