207 Days

207 days and I still haven’t come up with a good enough reason to drink. Last Saturday night I went to my mom’s bachelorette party. I was sitting there with 6 of her oldest friends, most of whom have been friends since they were kids, and my mom’s friend asked why I wasn’t drinking. Now, this question gave me so much anxiety when I first stopped drinking. “Aw shucks, who me? I’ll drink. Look, I’m ordering wine so you stop asking me about it! Here, let me drink this entire bottle of wine, just so you don’t think I’m not drinking because I definitely don’t have a drinking problem, right? HAHAHA, WINE! Stop looking at me!!” I’d dread social events, I’d imagine these long scenarios where people would not stop peppering me with questions about it.

Again and again, I’m embracing the fact that people really don’t care. The more I practice giving an honest response, the more and more I relish being asked this question. When I drank, I would have DIED rather than admit I had a less than healthy relationship with alcohol. It was really hard to give it words, and to not only admit I had a problem to myself, but to anyone else. . .it was just such a big secret to hide. 7 months later, and get this. . . there’s no secret anymore! There’s no big cover-up, there’s no stench to cover up, there’s no self-hatred to smile brightly through. There’s no fake “oh sure, why not?” sham as I accept a glass of wine that I play off as a “treat” but in reality I drank a bottle the night before, and I’ll do the same later that night. I was such a fucking liar!

Now, I’m not saying that with sobriety I’ve become this brand new person. I wasn’t a bad person, and I wasn’t a compulsive liar about anything except in regards to drinking. But over the past 7 months, I’m learning what it feels like to have a guilt-free conscience. And it is profoundly different than living with a big stinking pile of alcohol soaked rags that you’re trying to cover up. That’s kinda how I feel about it now, like my life was really great in a lot of ways, but I had a room in my house that I guarded and protected and fed, but was also really embarrassed about. It bled into everything. It made me inconsistent. It made me hard to live with, because I was constantly over reacting to the guilt, and my husband couldn’t rely on my reactions to things on any given day. Because I was so angry at myself, I’d take it out on him. Our marriage is SO MUCH BETTER. We’ve been consistently happy and solid for like 3 weeks straight, which. . . we’re both passionate Scorpios that are stubborn AF, so that’s probably a record. It certainly doesn’t hurt that he’s been cutting way back on his drinking too. I meticulously kept a record of all the drinking BS that he pulled last year (god, I’m psycho, lol), and I am so glad I did because we’re in such a better place now. I know that me not drinking has been a huge piece of that, because I’m so much more reliable these days!

Last Saturday, my response to my mom’s friend, someone I’ve drank with many times over the years, but has a good relationship with alcohol, was that “I decided I needed to control alcohol in the only way I could…I had to leave it behind completely so I could move forward”. And then I word-vomited for about 5 more minutes because I’m neither succinct nor clever enough to finish a quip when I should have. I also thought it sounded kinda asshole-ish, because everyone (except my sister) at the table was drinking wine. But back to my original point. . . she didn’t care. She was happy for me, and understood exactly what I meant. I still feel the need to go further “. . . it’s not like I was a complete trainwreck, I didn’t wake up every Tuesday and drink a 5th of vodka, but it controlled my thoughts, and blah blah blah. . . “. Maybe someday I’ll get over having the urge to keep talking about it, but if people ask, I have zero shame in just admitting it, and I’m getting better with feeling the need to build a case.

*sidenote – hello to all my new readers!! I was shocked and excited to have so much traffic from the WordPress Discovery link! Hope you enjoy 🙂

26 thoughts on “207 Days

  1. Hi, I started reading your blog 3 hours, and till now read all the posts.. They are beautiful, open and raw depicting real emotions, struggles as they are.

    I am 23 and never drank till the age of 21, but when I got admission in college, due to influence I tried it, as there is no harm in ” only one glass” and quickly got addicted. And then one day, I left it. It is hard to say no and carry tag for being a non-drinker but it makes you feel proud when you remember everything and feel more responsible.

    Lots of Love!….:*

    Liked by 3 people

  2. My experience is that non-drinkers don’t explain why they don’t drink. Technically, it’s no ones business. No one questions me about my choice of food or the color of my car, but it’s acceptable to ask why I don’t drink. I choose to ignore the question. There are so many other things that are far better to chat about. Keep plowing ahead. Sounds like you are doing great.

    Liked by 4 people

    1. I should have clarified that I don’t immediately start rambling on about my “why” in most cases, because most of the time, people don’t even ask! When they do though, I answer. That’s the thing that was so hard for me to fathom back when I drank. “What will I say?????!!!!” Nothing! But if people do ask, (and sometimes they do), it’s not the end of the world. It’s not the life ending conversation I had feared. I also don’t eat shellfish, and never worry about sharing that. The realization of it being that easy is constantly refreshing!

      Liked by 2 people

  3. you are right – no one really does care, to be honest. Experience shows that those who really are miffed or overly concerned are those who probably have their own issues with alcohol. I have yet to have anyone go apeshit over my admission of non-drinking. And as you are noticing, short and sweet is the best way to go..lol (I usually say something like “I”m retired” or “I used up all my drink tickets.”)

    And shout out to the Scorpios (Nov 9 here) – I have never heard of two Scorpios married – wow! ha ha. We make the worst alcoholics…lol.

    Thanks for sharing!


    Liked by 2 people

    1. “I”m retired” or “I used up all my drink tickets.”
      Love these! I have said “No thanks, I’ve had enough for a lifetime so I’m good!”

      It’s really true that it is usually those that either struggle or live in denial that have an issue with it. It really has been amazing to relate to people that also don’t drink, or rarely drink because I literally could NOT understand it previously. I was one that would side-eye non drinkers. They were a source of potential embarrassment, and I felt I couldn’t relate to them. Now it’s much easier to ‘get’.

      Liked by 2 people

  4. You are absolutely correct, no-one really cares if you drink or not and as Paul said those that do probably do have their own issues. There’s no shame in quitting drinking. When I quit I went through the “what will my friends say/think” but in reality they were happy for me and didn’t push the issue, and when we went out if I was the first one to order and asked for tea or water, about half the time they would do the same. It made me wonder if they were only ordering alcohol because they thought it was expected? Could we have been negative influences on each other?
    Anyway, Congratulations on 207 days! It feels good, doesn’t it?

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I love your eloquence. You use some of my favorite uncommon words.

    I have been here, both where you are and where you were. Once these days are on the horizon behind you, it seems like a different life altogether and almost hard to imagine being the person in the past.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Eloquent is not a word often used to describe me, lol. Thank you! I will now use that adjective any time people ask me to describe myself! *demures*

      It’s getting to the point where I can’t believe myself over the past 15 years. So many things could have been different! But there’s zero point in wallowing, so I will take the ugly and go forward with all my skeletons and be happy I found the lightness in leaving booze in my wake!

      Thanks for the comment, and good for you!!


      1. Glad to give you a positive adjective to use in the future.
        It’s always good to have one more nicety to look at in the mirror.


  6. As a non drinker, I often find myself explaining why I won’t have that glass of wine, scotch or beer, and I hate that. I don’t drink, that’s all, don’t enjoy it. I like water and soft drinks, weird huh? Keep it up!

    Liked by 2 people

  7. Great post! I was so petrified in social situations about how I was going to tell people that I wasn’t drinking. Until I found out the response is almost always ‘oh, ok’. Wow, I worked myself up for that?? Lol

    Although my favorite response, from someone I went to college was, ‘that’s probably good for you’… um yeah, understatement of the year.

    Keep it up!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You too!! Yeah, the first few times I got that response, I was confused. How do people not care? I used to be disappointed when people didn’t drink! Not in them, but just because I totally didn’t understand that response. Drinking was my way of life! It’s now so clear, and so much better!

      Liked by 2 people

  8. Great post, as always. When I was interviewed by WordPress (blatantly plugging my interview still on the header on Discover), I was asked to talk about our blogging community. I told them about 2 blogs I really like. okayishness.wordpress.com and your blog! I hope that you saw that I gave you a shout-out and am so excited that you got the Discover feature. You totally deserve it!!! And thank you for all that you share.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Wow Barb! I never thought I’d get so much traffic on my little blog!! Thank you so much for reading, for sharing, and for caring! I wanted to respond and send you a thank you note much earlier than this, but I’ve been on mobile for the entire past week, with barely a moment to breathe (life. . . getting in the way of my blog, dammit!). I think I found your blog originally through Okayishness.wordpress.com, so we have Em to thank for a lot!

      Your interview was great! I read it a few times, and I’m honored to have been mentioned. I’d love to collaborate on something with you in the future. Thank you SO MUCH for breathing life back into this place. I’d been remiss in posting, so now knowing that someone was reading has made me want to get back here more often. Thank you again, from the bottom of my (sober!) heart!!


      Liked by 1 person

      1. I was afraid you hadn’t seen it. After the interview I thought “oh no I hope she’s not stopping blogging now!” We all have something to contribute.My blog is not exclusively about alcoholism or sobriety. But I do write about it at times. A lot of my posts are about me trying to be funny (emphasis on trying, lol) but the memoir essays are where the alcoholism/recovery surfaces. I’m glad you are still posting and that you were featured!! Congratulations over and over again for that! You deserve it ❤

        Liked by 1 person

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