I almost didn’t write this post – and perhaps not for the reasons you’re thinking.
Last January I shared my vulnerable post about my decision to take an entire year off of drinking alcohol. You can read that post here.
July marked 6 months without a drink. Ok ok if I’m going to be fully honest and transparent I’ve got to confess…. there was this one time, at Costco, that I accepted a wine sample, and I sipped at that thimble for half an hour. Best part? I never did it again cause I just don’t THINK about it.
That is the most remarkable thing to me. Alex asked me the other day, “how do you feel after 6 months of sobriety?” My answer of course is that I feel FANTASTIC! I achieved the most important goal for myself. My mind is no longer filled up, mucked up, and clogged up by thoughts of my next drink.
I quite honestly feel like I almost never think about it anymore. In 6 short months, my mind has been freed.
The only time I think about it is on occasion, when it really would be a nice moment to indulge. Sometimes I walk by a patio and think it would be nice to sit there with a sangria. Or I invite my family over for a BBQ and think a cold beer would be lovely right now.
These moments are far in between, and fleeting. The intensity of those desires is dull. Like an echo of a feeling somewhere deep inside. Not at the surface. Not right up in my face.
So I almost didn’t write this post because honestly, I almost forgot all about it. I had it scheduled that I’d update you all on my sobriety at the 6 month mark, and the only reason I’m actually doing it is because I scheduled it. Not at all because I’ve been thinking about it.
I know I’m extremely fortunate. During these 6 months I’ve had support in MANY ways:
- One of the biggest things I am grateful for is that my partner, Alex, does not drink. So there is not even an ounce of alcohol in our home.
- My BFF (who lives upstairs!) barely drinks at all herself. She’s the social drinker that will sip on her fancy cocktail alllll night long. She can take it or leave it. So naturally, when we are together, she leaves it. Without question, without thought. I know she does it to support me, but I also know it doesn’t take anything away from her.
- My mother and step-father don’t drink. It’s a non-issue.
- My father and step-mother haven’t been drinking around me. They aren’t big drinkers, but we do have a history of partaking together. But not this year. I haven’t ask them to keep it away from me, they just seem to have decided this on their own.
- I have a close friend also on a sobriety journey (she’s at 7 months!). Where once we giggled over wine, we now heart-to-heart over coffee.
- The friends that I have who are not at all on this journey with me, have without question been seeing me for brunch instead of dinner. We may have connected over a glass in the past, but our friendships run deep and we are always grateful to spend time together over a meal.
- My sister-in-law and her partner have cut back how much they drink. So when we are together, they don’t bother having a drink. I don’t know if they have chosen to do this to support me, or for their own reasons. But I am grateful that it has been yet another way that I feel supported in my own choices.
- My mentor requested that our retreats together be dry in support of two of us who are sober. So when I travel, the sisterhood I enjoy is supportive in this way on top of so many other ways.
I know an addictions coach who even years into her sobriety is faced regularly with alcohol and resistance from her loved ones. I know my experience of sobriety and all the support I have felt is special. I am EXTREMELY grateful.
I have been asked many times “will you drink again?” For now, I honestly don’t know. I don’t want to wait until January 1st to have my next drink. I don’t want to live in anticipation of that future. Nor do I feel the need at this time to extend my commitment beyond 365 days.
I have given myself permission to live today, with the gift of sobriety that I enjoy RIGHT NOW.