Sunday, December 22, 2013

ENDING A 20 YEAR AFFAIR WITH ALCOHOL

*** submitted by Anonymously by a 43 year old, professional single woman


3 days ago I arrived at work, a little late and a lot hung-over.  It was my first day back after an unintended 4 day weekend.  The previous 4 days consisted of one very hung-over day and 3 drinking days.  I called in sick Monday (I have over 100 hours of sick time...what will it hurt?) and had a scheduled day off on Tuesday.  I was a little late that morning (13 beers the previous day-it was my day off!) but the day proceeded normally, we had just finished a very busy 3 or 4 weeks so it was pretty slow (another justification for calling in on Monday).  At about 3 pm I was called into a meeting with my VP and my direct boss and was informed that not only was I not getting an annual bonus but was being placed on a 90 day performance plan.  This was without a warning, I had made a few mistakes in the previous weeks but felt that I had contributed a great deal during the busy time and the previous 11 months.  My lack of consistency was cited and that I made more mistakes and missed more days than anyone else on the team.  The VP looked me straight in the eyes and told me she couldn't understand why I was sabotaging myself and that if I was really honest with myself I would understand why this was necessary.  With tears in my eyes, I said that I understood and was sent home for the rest of the day.  

I cried the whole drive home, feeling like I had been found out, feeling humiliated and embarrassed.  My normal reaction after such an upsetting encounter would be to pick up a six pack on the way home and spend the rest of the day wallowing in self-pity and getting drunk.  A voice inside of my head shouted "NO!" and I listened.  Something clicked in me and I knew that exact behavior landed me in the situation I found myself in.  

My resolve to end my 20+ year affair with booze is fairly strong, but I know it's a slippery slope.  Many times previously I have experienced consequences after which I swore to myself that I would stop.  I think the longest I have abstained was 30 days, I felt great, but that nagging voice kept at me "you can have just one...you earned it, had a rough day..."  

So here I sit on a Friday night, feeling the sting of the last few days, but I am not drinking.  The thought of drinking leaves me a little queasy; I can taste the sour bile of the next morning, feel the headache and upset stomach. 
I am feeling physically sick at the thought of taking that first sip and I officially have 3 days sober.  Reading your blog and listening to some episodes of The Bubble Hour (www.TheBubbleHour.com)  has been so helpful to me.

8 comments:

  1. Welcome to the sober journey. I am on Day 5 after 180 days sober I fell off the wagon for 2 months. We can do this, but not alone. I feel your pain and totally get it.

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  2. Welcome ... to life ... sober life. It is a beautiful wild roller coaster ride of living each moment to it's fullest, living LIFE on life's terms and learning how to do it with integrity; one moment at a time. I strongly urge you to seek a community of sober women for support, one of your choice ... Alcoholic Anonymous (which works for me, but I know there are others). The disease of alcoholism will tell you soon that "you can have just one drink" and it will be that first drink that will ultimately get you drunk. This WILL happen sooner or later ... has been my experience, I just don't know how long it will take in your case. Check out a women's AA or other recovery meeting as a visitor, sit down, have coffee with us, listen to our stories and make your own personal decision. Alcoholism is a progressive disease, it WILL get worse with every period of sobriety, the consequences will get worse, the guilt, remorse, the physical addiction ... will get worse over time ... trust me. Order anonymously our literature through Amazon, a copy of the Big Book of AA and read the first 164 pages ... especially chapter 3. I totally understand how you feel and you are not alone in your pain. Come, meet us, let us offer our hand, our experience, strength and HOPE. WE all do this thing called sobriety one day at a time TOGETHER and I now have a contented (not perfect) life I love. Tonight I'll pray for the still suffering; tonight I pray for you.

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    1. PS: I will celebrate 5 years sobriety in the early part of next year.

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  3. You can DO This. You are not alone, we have all been there too and are getting the real life we are meant to have - the Sober One. Your boss may be just the kick you need to push you into real living, not just existing from one high to the next. We're here for you. Just reach out. Keep writing and reading and drinking lots of water and sleeping as much as you can. Read Belle's Tired of Thinking about Drinking blog. She's a super motivator whose been where we are and found her way clear...

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  4. repeat this Quote by F Scott Fitzgerald
    "First I take a drink-- then the drink takes a drink-- then the drink takes me"
    And then do not take that first drink. keep posting and tuning in and reading on how to beat addiction and have recovery become part of the new you. Good luck and best wishes. It does get better

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  5. Hey Everybody, Go to Silkworth.net and go to Joe and Charlie tapes. After several minutes of listening, I was given a split second feeling of " I don't want to drink". I've kept that feeling for two years now. I stay plugged in to AA everyday. So grateful I don't have a desire to drink anymore!!

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  6. I feel for you. You are doing the right thing and a very brave thing not to drink. Keep in contact here, on Booze free brigade, on various blogs. There are wonderful people who have been throught the same things as you offering sincere support. Good luck, good start for a new life. I'm on (another) day 3, but it does get better. The better starts when you don't drink.

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  7. Keep going one day at a time... eventually the thought of a drink won't make you sick anymore, and that usually means the obsession to drink is going away, or your next drink is right around the corner. Its so important to get into a program to rid ourselves of the obession to drink by working steps. So much of why I drank was because of issues I had within myself I never could work through, and the steps help do heal us. My resentments combined with my genetic allergy to alcohol was enough to take me to my grave if I didn't stop drinking. Now I realize I cannot safely use alcohol in any amount ever, and I am free. I no longer have the desire to drink, nor do I need to to have fun, enjoy life, cope with dissapointments, and I'm reliable today. You will make it, if you really want it and you have had enough go get a sponsor to take you through the 12 steps and make some women friends who are sober. Build a new life in sobriety and discover a new you :)

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