A member posted this question in the Members Feed the other day…
“I need some wise advice. So how do you know if the booze has to go completely and forever??? It seem like such a big thing and such a long time… Is it really all or nothing? I’d appreciate your thoughts lovely people.”
The always wise @suek posted this reply which is so magnificent I had to feature it here (with her permission).
I used to feel like this too, really sad and worried about the thought of not drinking again.
My attitude to drinking alcohol was that it was inevitable. It did not occur to me that it was feasible, or even possible to live an alcohol-free life. How the heck was I going to relax? How was I going to socialise? Get over my shyness? How on earth would I celebrate? Or commiserate? What about weddings, funerals, Christmas, New Year? What about weekends? What about every day, after work?
Everyone who quits drinking & gets sober seems to go though this. We simply can’t imagine life without alcohol. What the fuck are we going to DO if we don’t drink? How are we going to function normally? It just seems utterly impossible.
These were not always conscious thoughts. They were deep, still, silent attitudes. They were unspoken fears. Beliefs even. They were incredibly powerful. They kept me trapped.
So how come I now happily live booze-free? I now look at that list and think WTF? That’s haha hilarious. How could I have been so blind?
One day I found out that those deep, still, silent attitudes, unspoken fears, beliefs… were not true. They were a baldface lie, and I didn’t need to believe them.
Looking back, I can see so many times when I knew drinking alcohol was the stumbling block to something I really wanted — a healthy body, an open, free mind, deep inner peace, the enthusiasm to write freely, to create. And I let it stay there, trap me, hold me back. I didn’t stand up to it, see it for what it was. I continued to drink, to blot myself out, numb and dumb myself, because that felt normal — that was what I was used to. Withdrawing, suppressing, feeling trapped.
I spent so many years trying to work the system, trading off drinking with working really hard, saving really hard, exercising really hard, eating well, doing yoga… Doing everything right, 110%. Because being a non-drinker just didn’t seem like it was an option — but I did have some reconciling to do. I was going to keep drinking, but I had to pay for it somehow.
Now I know my alcohol habit was keeping me afraid, small, withdrawn — just like I’d been as a child. I was doing exactly the same shitty stuff to myself as I’d blamed my parents for doing to me.
SORRY for the rant… but I want to assure you that when you get a bit of time with no booze invading your body chemistry and bending your brain, you actually might not want to drink again. You might decide you’re totally thrilled that you never have to drink again.