STILL SOBER

Hello sober friends,

I haven’t posted in a long time because I have felt extremely content with my sober life! Although not posting, I am still reading all of your beautiful words and they give me encouragement. I am on day 352… almost one year sober and I CANNOT believe it has been a year without booze!! I have settled into a place of normalcy where I no longer crave alcohol, the experience, or all of the mayhem that comes with it. My husband has remained sober with me as well and last week one of his friends asked him how he felt about not drinking anymore, he replied, “It’s the best thing I have ever done”! We have enjoyed several sober vacations, we have both lost weight (and kept it off), and most of all our marriage has continued to grow in a beautiful way.

Rarely do I even think about wine or my former life however I am reaching out to all of you today due to a recent interaction with my family. A few weeks ago we were cleaning out the basement and we stumbled upon our old wine collection. To be honest we never threw it out because I never knew how permanent this decision would be and shortly after we just forgot about it. There are maybe 10 bottles that we had collected from special occasions in our life. Our wedding, honeymoon, vacations, etc and they all have meaning to us. I had mentioned to my dad that I had some wine that he could use and or give away as gifts if he wanted, but nothing ever came of it. This past week my dad had asked me for the wine but my husband had realized that he wrote on most of them with special dates/where they were from so I told my dad it probably wouldn’t work out. Yesterday I was on the phone with my mom and she asked me about the wine as well, I told her the same thing I had told my dad. When I got off the phone I cried for several minutes. I don’t feel ready to give the bottles away. Yes I am sober and no I don’t plan on drinking but I feel emotionally attached to them and the memories they carry for me. I wept for a while and then got mad at myself for feeling this way. Why can’t I let go of them? I don’t want anyone else to have them and I don’t know why. After the conversation with my mom I felt the loss all over again. I wanted to be normal, I wished I could drink them myself; I wished that I wasn’t in this fucking place to begin with. I haven’t felt like this for months and months so I wasn’t sure why it was hitting me so hard over something so silly. Does this mean in my subconscious I want to drink again? I am confused by my own reaction. Nonetheless I pulled myself together and had a nice evening. I didn’t let it ruin my night or my attitude and I am still so grateful for my sobriety and health! I would love to hear someone else’s thoughts on this and thoughts on what I should do! I so appreciate all of you and thanks for reading!!

Xo

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The fantasy

To my surprise, this summer has been one of the best I can ever remember. Before I quit the wine I always used to fantasize about summer in such an unrealistic light. I pictured my husband and I sipping wine outside amongst the flowers, eating gourmet food, and finishing the evening with candles and romance. IN REALITY: drinking summers would consist of me trying to sneak in as much alcohol as possible (without causing a fight), inevitably arguing with my husband, eating anything and everything that was in sight regardless of whether I liked it or not, and passing out at an outrageously early hour with zero romance involved. I find it so easy to get swept up in the fantasy but its very grounding to reminisce how life truly was when I was drinking, instead of the bullshit dream. My husband and I have always had a great relationship; we have only been married for 2 years but have been together for nearly 10, since high school and we have grown together as the years went on. I didn’t think our relationship could get any better… until I quit drinking. Of course we bicker as all couples do but overall our marriage has gotten so much stronger. Drinking was a huge wedge in our relationship that I always had blinders to. My husband has said numerous times how proud of me he is and how much closer he feels to me since I have made the bold decision to never drink again. He has taken the journey with me and not had a drop of alcohol since I quit even though he isn’t an alcoholic. To me… there is nothing more romantic.

Last year if you asked me what a sober summer would look like I would have told you boring, stupid, a waste of time, weird, no fun. Today however I am proud to say that a summer without alcohol is AMAZING! It has felt like such a long summer (in a good way!), I have been truly present in every moment, I remember all the evenings spent eating ice cream and walking in the warm air, I remember my birthday and anniversary with no “blank” spaces, and I have woken up early every weekend to enjoy the long summer days with no hangover! There have been struggles and moments of me wanting to be ‘normal’ again, but all in all I am so very proud of myself and what I have accomplished this summer! Thank you to all of your beautiful words of inspiration. I know I do not post often but I do read daily!

Shine on my sober friends ☺!
Xo

Trials

Warning: Not an upbeat post.

I am in a slump on day 210. I haven’t had a drop of alcohol in nearly 7 months and rather than feeling happy and excited, I feel depressed. My brother-in-law got married this past weekend. I had to endure a rehearsal dinner sober (gritting my teeth the whole time watching others indulge on a Friday), then of course the actual wedding itself on Saturday (torture). I don’t know why anyone would ever choose to attend a wedding if they didn’t have to. To put it simply: IT WAS A DRUNK FEST. I tried to put on a smile as I ordered my diet coke and slurped it down but inside I was miserable. Since getting sober I haven’t been around drinking often. I have chosen to remove myself from slippery situations and generally speaking if others are drinking and I am not I become grumpy. I know people say this fades with time but 7 months later and I still feel exactly the same way. When I see people happily drinking their wine/beer/liquor I secretly want to strangle them. Not literally, but in my head I just want to punch them because I am jealous that they can be normal and I can’t. WHY CAN’T I BE NORMAL??

At my table there was a man who repeatedly asked us what we were drinking and when we (my husband and I) said diet coke he laughed and pestered us and gave us a grimace of pure disgust… I have never seen anything like it before. It was a terribly uncomfortable situation since this man knew my husband when he was younger and really wanted to have a drink with him.

Since this was my brother-in-law’s wedding we knew that we couldn’t just up and leave early. We knew we had to stay until a reasonable hour. As the night progressed the crowd turned from tipsy to full on wasted. I mean… I have never seen such animals. They were wild on the dance floor; doing shots every 10 minutes, etc. Honestly, they looked like they were having a blast. My husband was dragged away by his brother and I sat there at a table and watched the mayhem unfold. I am still not ok since this wedding. It spurred lots of emotions for me… I am sad that I loved the music and not once did I dance. In my prime I would have had the time of my life at this wedding. I am so envious of those who can partake in the fun. I don’t have enough self-confidence to dance without the crutch of booze and so there I sat… praying the minutes would turn into hours so I could leave.

That weekend has truly impacted me. I am beginning to doubt my own choices to remain sober. I caught myself thinking yesterday that maybe 7 months was enough; maybe I am ready to “try” moderation. I miss alcohol and this wedding made me realize that. How can I move beyond?

MIA

Hello all my sober friends,

First I have to apologize for being MIA for the past two months… YES, I am still sober!! I am currently on day 149 and feeling great about it. When I try to remember why I stopped blogging I can’t really pinpoint the exact reason. It started with me missing my AA meetings. I never really felt like I belonged there despite the fact that I am an alcoholic. I would dread going to meetings and become very anxious about it (I’m sure you can tell from previous posts). All it took was for me to miss one week and I felt liberated. I decided not to go for the second week and by the third I just decided I didn’t want to go back. Now many people would assume that I am on a slippery slope and that I am one day away from relapse but honestly I feel quite the contrary! Going to meetings made me focus on my “problem”, made me constantly aware of what day I was on or the fact that I am not normal. Consequently I haven’t been to a meeting in 2 months. At that same time I began to stop reading other peoples blogs, stopped writing, and simply stopped looking at how many days sober that I was. I suppose you might say that I was running from my problems because in essence I was. As I expressed above I had a very liberating 2 months. I don’t feel as obsessed with counting days, using techniques to stay sober, worrying about what I will tell other people… I have come to a place where I simply just don’t drink alcohol and anyone who gives me a hard time about it can F*** off. Sorry to be crude but that is how I feel! I don’t want to live a life where I am constantly feeling sorry for myself because I am an alcoholic. I don’t want to meet other people in the same situation as me because I am content with my life and whom I associate with! I suppose one might say that I am on the road to self-acceptance! Although this may take years to fully accept myself I feel as though I am making great strides and choosing to do things that make me happy. Several milestones have occurred for me in the past two months since I have written:

1. I told an old friend that I no longer drink and she had my husband and I over for dinner- and I did it sober!!
2. I went to Turks and Caicos for a week with my husband and didn’t touch a drop of alcohol (and had the best vacation of my life!!)
3. In casual conversation at work I mentioned that I don’t drink/didn’t drink on vacation… and no one cared
4. My kitten whom I love to death has suffered a life threatening illness and I did not turn to wine to help me cope
5. I went to a bridal shower where I was extremely uncomfortable and didn’t drink despite other people indulging
6. I have considered starting a family within the next year and am no longer afraid that I wont make it 9 months without wine during pregnancy
7. I have celebrated several holidays with my family without drinking
8. I have lost some weight & stopped obsessing/beating myself up over the desserts that I love (Hey, if a girl can’t drink she should be able to indulge in her sweets right?!)
9. I have stopped saying yes to commitments that I don’t want to do. If someone asks me to do something and I don’t want to go I have the strength to say “not today, another time”
10. I no longer dread the weekends… I simply love them!

This felt very therapeutic to write again. I hope all of you are still going strong as well.. I have a lot of catching up to do! Will write again soon.

Xoxo

3 months

Tomorrow is 90 days!!! I can’t believe I have gone 3 whole months without alcohol. I am very proud of myself and I feel that I have greatly grown over the last few months without alcohol controlling my life. There are definitely weak moments where I miss my glass of white wine but overall I am healthier and happier (as I described in the previous post)! To anyone in the beginning: it DOES get easier, I promise!

Will post again soon, just wanted to say hi and yahoo!! Xo

Day 84

I just realized I haven’t posted in several weeks. I have been slacking on the blog since I have been so busy recently (I know, not an excuse)! So much has happened in my life since the last post. I am on day 84!!! Almost at the 3-month mark and I couldn’t be happier about it. I know my last post was very doom and gloom but I am feeling much better about my choice to sustain sobriety. I feel so much healthier than I used to. I am continually reminded of this on weekends… it still amazes me how much of my life was wasted (literally) by alcohol. I can accomplish so much on the weekends now and I always wake up feeling refreshed and renewed. I hear friends at work talk about their day-long hangovers and I surely don’t miss those days at all. I had originally planned on writing about other topics but I feel an urge to write all the positives down… ☺

Reasons I love sobriety:

1. I wake up each morning without feeling sick
2. My husband and I rarely fight now
3. I am eating less and working out more
4. I am learning how to deal with my emotions rather than mask them
5. My skin looks healthier
6. I am allowing myself to do what I want to do instead of trying to please everyone else
7. I am finding new hobbies
8. I am appreciating (good) food more
9. I have less anxiety about last nights actions
10. I am full of energy on the weekends
11. I am less bloated
12. My overall mood has dramatically increased (says my husband)
13. I am no longer a slave to the drink

Xoxo

Missing the good old days…

Hey everyone,
Just warning you upfront this will probably be a depressing post. I am on day 65 and instead of celebrating I feel angry/sad/upset/down. Last night my friend (who I work with) and I went to a spinning class after work. This class happened to be in the city (downtown area) as opposed to the suburbs where I live. I enjoyed the class; it felt great to do a different type of workout than I am used to. Afterwards we went to a juice bar/healthy café and got smoothies and salads. Now this café is on the same strip as all the bars that everyone congregates at. I must say I felt a little depressed that instead of participating I was stuck working out, sober, and drinking a juice instead of a cocktail. It is one of the first times that I have felt really excluded from society. As we walked back to our car I looked in the bars and saw everyone drinking and laughing and overall just having a blast. Now my friend that I went with is one who I have only known for a few months at work. She knows that I am not drinking right now but doesn’t know the extent as to why I quit or for how long I wont be drinking. She said, “ Maybe next time we can get drinks after!!” and my heart sunk. Of course I would love to be normal and be able to get drinks with a new friend. Of course I would love to have fun/let loose with a co-worker who I adore. I feel like an outcast. How boring am I? I am feeling sorry for myself that I can’t be a normal 25 year old having fun on a Friday night with my friends and husband. As I walked along that street I saw my past… and I couldn’t help but remember all the fun times I once had.

When I woke up this morning I was glad that I hadn’t drank last night. I was hangover free and woke up early so I could enjoy the day. This past summer my husband and I bought our first house. For the past several months we have been redoing hardwood floors, painting, replacing doors, etc. At first I loved the entire process and thought it was very “exciting” and “fun” to be working on our house together. Now… I am drained and stressed. We spend our entire weekends working on the upstairs bedroom and it seems as if the work is never ending. As soon as one thing gets finished another 10 projects arise. I am stressed because I feel like my upstairs is a construction zone and it isn’t going to get better anytime soon. When I first became sober I was so excited to see how much we got done in one weekend! I was amazed how quickly we accomplished tasks! Today I am feeling exhausted both mentally and physically. This morning we went to the hardware store and picked up right where we left off last Sunday. About an hour into working I just simply stopped. Is this what my life has amounted to? Instead of having fun wine filled weekends I am sitting on my floor scraping paint off the molding. I am tired of living like that but at the same time the longer the work goes unfinished the more stressed I become. I feel enslaved to the pressure I am putting on myself to have everything in my house be “perfect”. I am sad that I don’t have fun anymore. I am sad that I can’t escape my feelings with a glass of wine. Don’t worry; I don’t have thoughts of relapsing I just wish my life was different and that I had more time to relax. I also need to learn how to relax and have fun? I am at a loss. Sorry for the downer post- I just had to express my emotions to someone.

The Liebster Award

Unknown

I am very new to the blogging world and am shocked to have been nominated for the Liebster Award by https://dreambelievefightachieve.wordpress.com! Here are the answers to my questions!

1) Why did you start blogging?
I began blogging to try to connect with others who are sober! I firmly believe in community and the help/connection with other people in the same situation as you. Blogging seemed like a natural outlet for all the ups and downs of a sober lifestyle.

2) If you could change one thing in your life, what would it be?
For the most part I am extremely happy with my life! I can’t say there is much that I would want to change. If I had to choose… I would probably have picked a different career. Overall though I am living happily ☺

3) What are your goals for the future?
My goals for the future are definitely to maintain sobriety and to travel with my husband! I eventually want to become a mother and enjoy the many phases that come with that blessing.

4) Do you prefer books or movies?
Definitely movies!

5) Do you have any siblings?
Yes, I have one older sister.

6) Do you have any pets?
I have a 6 month old Persian kitten who I am madly in love with!!!

7) How many posts have you made on your blog so far?
This will make 19!

8) Who is your favourite solo artist/band?
I mostly listen to pop music on the radio however recently I have been loving The Piano Guys with my new sobriety.

9) Do you have a sweet tooth?
ABSOLUTELY! Candy/chocolate/ice cream/cake/you-name-it-I-want-it!

10) When was the last time you had me-time?
This past weekend… my husband worked Saturday morning and I was able to sip my espresso on the couch in the morning sunlight!

11) What’s your favourite colour?
Definitely peach!

Thank you https://dreambelievefightachieve.wordpress.com for nominating me for this award!! I hope to spread the joy around ☺

I am nominating:

http://unsmashed.com/?s=liebester

https://ainsobriety.wordpress.com/?s=liebester

https://mocktailsalltheway.wordpress.com/page/4/

Questions:
1. Why did you start blogging?
2. If you could change one thing in your life, what would it be?
3. What are your goals for the future?
4. Which do you prefer, books or movies?
5. Do you have any siblings?
6. Do you have any pets?
7. How many posts have you done in total since starting your blog?
8. Who is your favourite singer/band?
9. Do you have a sweet tooth?
10. When was the last time you had some ‘me time’ to relax?
11. What is your favourite colour?

Award Rules:
1. Thank the person who nominated you
2. Answer 11 questions
3. Nominate other bloggers who deserve the award
4. Ask them 11 questions
5. Put these rules in your post
6. Inform the bloggers you have nominated

Day 58

You know you are in a good place when you have to check your tracker to see what day you are on… day 58 for me here! This is definitely the longest I have ever been sober for. Weekends are no longer feeling foreign and awkward. Honestly I can say that I haven’t put myself into many social situations since quitting drinking but I am completely ok with that. Why should I want to surround myself with non-sober people at such a fragile stage? I’m giving myself permission to be a hermit and do whatever I feel like doing!! I am waking up even earlier on the weekends and just loving the morning stillness and clear mind that each sunrise brings. For now… sobriety has become my new normal and I feel acceptance for my life and myself… and it’s a great feeling!

The other day I was cooking dinner with my husband and I remember we were joking around about something, maybe a song lyric (I can’t quite remember)? And he said (in a joking way referring the a funny comment) “Well you are an alcoholic!” and I laughed it off. Internally I was frightened. This was the first time that someone has directly referred to me as an alcoholic. I must say it hurt and I’m not quite sure why it hurt. Just having someone I love so much say those words to me (not in a mean spirited way at all) stung. In my mind I just wanted to run away from the conversation and never return. Wait… someone else called me an alcoholic? To this point it has just been myself saying this… you know, at meetings and internally accepting the fact that I am an alcoholic and can’t control myself around drinks. To hear this come from someone else’s lips was completely mortifying- even though it was my husband who I have known/loved for years and years!! I guess this made me realize that I have not truly accepted it at all… I felt ashamed, embarrassed, and angry; I’m not sure if this is normal or not. It made me realize what an uphill battle I am facing and how much more I need to learn.

For those of you in their first few days I would like to say that it does get better!!! If I can do this then you certainly can too. Thanks for being so supportive and kind. Have a great sober weekend my friends ☺

Sober Valentine

On this lovely 52nd day, I am happy to report that I remember the entire Valentine’s Day weekend! My husband and I went skiing, went out for dinner, and enjoyed each other’s company away from home (staying at my parents condo)! Normally when we go skiing I spend the entire day anticipating the first drink and usually I completely drink myself into oblivion. Not this time!! Of course I had a moment where I thought about opening a bottle of champagne or wine for the “romantic” evening but I knew I wouldn’t/couldn’t. It’s funny because we were trying to remember what we did last Valentine’s Day and we both can’t remember a single thing! I’m sure we stayed in, drank a bottle or two of wine, passed out, and felt hung over the next day. I feel good about the fact that this year I remember everything and I had a great weekend!

I have been thinking about the romantic feeling that alcohol (wine, champagne, etc) gives us and why it feels like we need that in order to celebrate love? Is it romantic to black out early? Is it romantic to get so drunk that you don’t want to be intimate together? Is it romantic to wake up the next morning with a pounding headache and sick stomach? Is it romantic to forget what movie you watched or what you said to your spouse? ABSOLUTELY NOT!! I don’t know why we automatically associate love/celebrating/romance with alcohol. I really want to change my opinion on this matter because it’s frustrating to the sober mind. I need to learn to dissociate alcohol with a romantic evening. It certainly helps when you actually THINK about what the poison will do to us rather than fantasize about its effect on the evening. I am glad to say that YES I had a great Valentine’s Day without wine! It can be done ☺ Hope you all enjoyed it as well!

Xo