Oh wow!!!!! I have made it through my first week as a sober individual. I have even managed a weekend away with 15 other people drinking to celebrate my brother’s 50th. I thought I’d be absolutely buzzing but in all honesty I’m totally exhausted. It’s wiped me out. Is that normal? Maybe it’s the amount of energy required to keep myself off it, especially when it’s all around me. Or maybe it’s my body now trying to get used to no alcohol, wondering what the bloody hell is going on.
I felt really good yesterday and have generally felt much better in the mornings. My sleep is still quite disrupted, which surprises me. I actually wake around 5am feeling like I have a mild hangover .. I have to tell myself it can’t be the case. I guess all this is part of the early journey and I just have to go with the flow. I can’t say ‘going with the flow’ is particularly easy for me but I have to learn I can’t control everything in life, so best start getting used to that now I suppose.
I do feel like I’m a bit on the boring side when I’m not drinking and I don’t feel as relaxed in a social situation, but maybe that was because I didn’t really know many people very well. I’m trying not to over think it (as I normally do) and simply congratulate myself on succeeding. I also noticed, looking from the outside in, how little some people actually drink. Particularly the women that were there. I mean, they maybe had 3 glasses of wine, 4 at the most, the ENTIRE evening. When I drank, I assumed everyone had the same amount. Nope, that was clearly just me on my second bottle.
Anyway, my blog isn’t going to be as eloquent, funny or insightful as many others. My posts will generally just be a few thoughts and my attempts to process feelings and situations, but I hope those of you that read them will stick with me. One thing that has astounded me is how absolutely lovely people are on here. The support you have already given me and the way you help and support each other is truly impressive and so valuable. A particular shout out to Jim, a fellow Brit, who took me under his wing a few days ago and has truly made a difference to how I managed this (Thanks Jim and congrats on achieving your personal milestone today).
My second week starts here and I’m looking forward to finding out what other positive things AF brings me.
So, after feeling pretty smug about things yesterday I have to be honest, as this weekend is approaching, I am feeling anxious. Going away for two nights with 5 other couples, staying in a farmhouse which will be full of alcohol and everyone else enjoying drinks. Out tomorrow evening for dinner and more drinks. I don’t want to ruin it for myself and others by worrying but it’s hard not to. It’s been paid for by my brother, we are kid free and in a beautiful environment – yet all I can focus on is how am I going to survive not drinking alcohol! That’s terrible isn’t it?
Don’t worry, I’m still just as focussed and determined but this is my first real test (although I guess some might say achieving 5 days sober has been 5 separate test already!). I’m fully prepared with my running kit, bubbles for a bath and my kindle – and copious amounts of different AF drinks. I just don’t want to be a total bore or to feel sorry for myself.
Day 6 on a weekend away – I probably didn’t pick the best time to start this journey but for whatever reason I felt I had to do it now and there is no turning back. Onwards and upwards. At least I won’t feel crap tomorrow morning!!!
Today I have a day off work .. I get one every two weeks. For the past year (or more) my day off has started with me not being able to get up. My boys go to school and husband goes to work, I have loads to do, but I lie in bed, feeling exhausted, upset, down and sometimes anxious. I lie there in self pity until I fall asleep. I have often cancelled my gym class and slept until lunch finally forcing myself up to try and get stuff done.
Today I am awake. I have been awake since 7.30am and I don’t feel upset, anxious or exhausted. I’m going to make myself my second cup of tea and make a plan for my day. Thoughts come into my head, I want to message people I shouldn’t (I’ll share that issue another day) but I feel calm about it and know I won’t. I know I’m going to be productive. It’s a relief. I have been on antidepressants for over a year (with a 5 mth break) and not once have I felt this sense I’d calm.
I am thinking a lot about this weekend. My brother has organised a weekend away for 6 couples in a cottage. His 50th is in December and this is part of the celebrations. I purposefully didn’t think about what I would do regarding alcohol because I wanted to get my journey started and that would’ve stopped me. Now I have to decide and I’ve decided I’m not going to drink. It’s so scary and I have no idea how I’m going to manage but I’m not ready to give up on this feeling of waking up calm, refreshed and (dare I say it?) content.
So, on day 5, I am not going to drink this weekend.