How many of you called that or at the very least thought, “oh man she should be sober again”, in the last six months? Yeah, me too.
There’s a few differences this time around. The biggest difference being, I don’t know how long I’m going to stay sober. My choice to be sober again isn’t about a 365 day challenge, there’s no end goal. It’s more an overall lifestyle change.
That being said, I’ve been thinking about future events that could make it difficult to abstain. For instance, my wedding. I can’t imagine not having a glass of champagne at my wedding. But then again, I’m nowhere near that day and I’m not even sure I’ll ever get there (although my psychic tells me otherwise), and if I feel the need to drink at my wedding after not drinking for ten years, then maybe I shouldn’t be getting married. But, what do I know, I haven’t been this single since 4th grade so I should probably stop worrying about future nuptials and focus on the more realistic concerns I have with sobriety.
What about those really bad days? You know the ones I’m talking about. You blow a big audition and get stuck in traffic coming back from Santa Monica and you realize you’re an unemployed, struggling actor with a six-figure student loan debt, and a degree in Theater. Maybe that’s just me, but you get the point. The only thing you have to look forward to is a bottle of Sauvignon Blanc and a pack of American Spirits, am I right? No. I figured something out recently that made this excuse to drink, null and void.
I’ve said it before, I’ll say it again: Last year was the hardest year of my life. When I decided to go sober for a year, the universe responded by breaking my heart in every way possible. I dealt with almost too much last year, but when I came out of it, I knew I was a better person for it and I was grateful to have gone through all of it. This year, any and all of the drama I’ve experienced has been self-inflicted and alcohol-induced, and I’m not a better person, I actually kind of suck because of it. I would take life lessons over manipulated drama any day. (But like, hey Universe, if you can go a little easier on me this time around, that’d be cool too.)
Ok, how about this one. I’m turning 30 next year, and isn’t there some rule that says you have to go on a pub crawl in Weho for twelve hours that day while wearing a ribbon that says “Dirty Thirty”? I did a post last year about birthdays, mine more specifically. I talked about how the last eight(ish) birthdays before my year of sobriety had all been saturated with alcohol and bad life choices. My birthday during my sober year couldn’t have been more opposite and it was definitely my favorite birthday of my 20’s. And then this year, I went right back to alcohol and bad life choices, and woke up the next morning thinking “who the hell am I?”. That physical and emotional hangover is what planted the going sober seed.
I never, ever thought I’d say this, but I miss being sober. I miss going out at night and not having to take an Uber. I miss waking up the next morning and knowing whatever I said or did was 100% me. I miss not having to apologize for choices I’ve made. I miss the cheap bar tabs and dinner bills. I miss being able to “DD” for my friends. And I really, really miss my sober body.
I thought after my year of sobriety, I could be one of those cool cats who just has a glass of wine with dinner or a couple drinks with friends. I thought since I showed myself I was good enough without alcohol and learned all these lessons last year, that it would all carry over into this year when I went back to drinking. Nope. I basically picked up right where I left off in 2014, before going sober.
I think my relationship with alcohol is a little more “nature” and a little less “nurture”. I have a history of alcoholism in my family, which biologically, makes it a lot harder for me to be a “just-one-drink” kind of gal. I’ve said this before, but I think it’s worth repeating. I don’t think I am an alcoholic, but I know it wouldn’t take much to get me there. One positive thing, actually, probably the only positive thing that comes from seeing different family members struggle with alcoholism, is that I know what I don’t want for my life and I can recognize that drinking isn’t worth the negative affects it could potentially have on my goals.
So, there you have it. Presently Sober is back in full force. Maybe I should change the title of this blog to Permanently Sober?