Well … I survived my first work holiday party completely sober. It only took 6 Shirley Temples and 25 awkward conversations with co-workers. But lo and behold I survived the party and the next morning I wasn’t hung over. I repeat I wasn’t hung over after a work holiday party. I still can’t believe it myself.
As mentioned in my last post I have really been struggling with my own sobriety. As I was scouring the interwebs to read about others experiences with their first six months of sobriety I saw that an ex boyfriend of mine was online. (Yes you read that right I said boyfriend. I did used to date men but much like quitting alcohol I quit them too). Anyways, I reached out to him to chat about being sober as, when when we were dating years ago, he was in his first year of sobriety. He now has seven years of sobriety. Holy fuck.
Knowing what I know now in my own sobriety I feel so bad for him. I was 23 living in a new city and and was throwing back makers mark/diet cokes like they were going out of style. (Note: They did go out of style — since living in Santa Barbara I haven’t been able to touch brown liquor and I cringe just thinking about it). He was newly sober and going to meetings and in love with someone who was thrilled at the idea of having a designated designated driver and who didn’t give much thought to sobriety. I especially didn’t give any thought to his personal recovery and sobriety and how hard it must have been for him to go out to so many bars and be involved in so many things that revolved around drinking. Mainly because I was too busy drinking. Duh.
Anyways, I asked him how he maintained his sobriety (and continues to), if it is hard for him and if he ever early on in his sobriety felt down or the blues. (And probably 25 other questions as, if you know me, I always do.) Well they say misery loves company (like an alcoholic loves a drink) and so for me it was good to hear that he, too, had his bouts of being down and his troubles in maintaining sobriety in a society in which alcohol is so prevalent. How does he maintain sobriety? One day at a time. And meetings. He told me, especially in the beginning, lots of fucking meetings. (Lord only knows how he stayed sober when he was dating me as thinking about dating myself makes even me want to drink. A lot.)
To be honest I haven’t been going to meetings. I got my 60 day chip and haven’t been back since then.
Well, it has been 143 days (83 since I had gone to a meeting) and with Thanksgiving here and gone and the holidays quickly approaching (P.S. at first run through I put “fastly approaching” and then realized that “fastly” is not really a word and then I wondered how I ever graduated from college with a degree in English nonetheless) but anyways, I find myself in a bout of holiday blues. Or at least that’s what I am hoping it is.
Truth be told since I have gotten sober I have found myself down. This shit ain’t no walk in the mother fucking park for me. (I don’t even like to walk in the park.) Is it because before I would have a beer or two to take the load off and forget my problems? Perhaps.
I’ll break it down.
Month 1 1/2: down and didn’t want to seemingly leave the house. Maybe I was just embarrassed or not comfortable not drinking. Poor poor me pour me another drink. Thank god for delivery and Netflix.
Month 2 (end of) and Month 3 (all): I felt fucking great! I was like: I got this. This shit is easy.
I’m the King of the World!! Woo Hoo! However, shortly thereafter that high, much like Jack, my happy Titanic-sized-sober ship sank and that selfish bitch Rose pushed me off the plank of wood (that could very well have held both of us on it) and I again saw myself slowly plummeting into the depths of the dark cold abyss of the unforgiving sea … or rather a little bout of the blues. Did I mention in addition to having ADD I am kind of dramatic?
Month 4: I have had my share of ups and downs. I have put myself in situations in which lots of people say to avoid in early sobriety. Now everyone’s sobriety is different and some can do the same things they did while drinking while others cannot. For me personally, I have put myself in situations, especially as of late, in which alcohol would have been consumed. Now I’m not even counting family holidays like Thanksgiving, those dreaded work dinners or even my own birthday as situations they say to avoid, I’m talking Halloween parties, friends birthdays, a charity event at a wine bar, going out to bars with friends. Those are situations that I willingly put myself in knowing that it was going to be a struggle to not drink. I’ve come out the other end sober and not hung over. (So why do I still eat too much Mexican food and unhealthy food like I’m drunk and/or hungover?) That’ll be my next vice to give up.
These past two weeks I have, again, felt myself getting a little down. (It doesn’t help that I have had some major life changes occur, I’ll touch more on that in the right time and date.) So with that said, I think I am going to take the advice given to me and surround myself with people who are in the same struggle. With people who understand. I am going to go back to meetings and try to immerse myself within AA starting tonight. Maybe I’ll even start to meditate. I don’t know. I don’t know if we’ll have enough time.
stay sober my friends.