So, yesterday I sealed the deal. By making it public, I feel like I made it forever, real.
What I never realized was how much I had let drinking dictate who I am. I've always thought of myself as this comfortable, happy, optimistic person, which I know I still am somewhere, but this surrender has me feeling emotional, vulnerable, and raw.
I've heard it said that early sobriety is truly like being born again. So in a lot of ways, this raw and vulnerable feeling is exactly right. It doesn't make it easier, just, better knowing it's normal.
I've known all my life that it was a risky thing to tempt fate, having an alcoholic mother. But, the mind of an addict is so tricky. I told myself since I never had a hangover, rarely drank in front of the kids, never drove, never embarrassed myself, was still highly functioning, that I didn't really have a problem. But the thing is, I do.
After dinner every day, I was counting down the minutes until bedtime, so I could have my wine. Bedtime was particularly stressful, because if the boys didn't play along and just follow routine without any glitches (helloooo, they are 7, 5, and 3!) I would become totally incensed that they were stealing MY time! Imagine that...a Mom so jealous of her wine time that she became irrationally angry with her own kids....... for being kids.
"Take the first step in faith. You don't have to see the whole staircase, just take the first step." Martin Luther King Jr said those words, and I cannot think of a better way to look at things right now. I don't have to be sober for life...RIGHT NOW. I just have to do it for today, believing that the next step will appear for me tomorrow. And that is huge, because if I start to think about my Birthday (without wine) or Valentine's Day (without wine) or my Memorial Day Picnic (without wine) or simply the next few Fridays (without wine), I will surely run screaming backwards.
This day, 7 days ago, I had my last night of drinking. I didn't know it would be my last, and I thank God I didn't know, because the way my addictive personality works is, I have to "prepare" for "the last day" by planning and preparing and then inevitably it's not what I expected or wanted or it wasn't enough or what I want to remember as "the last time", so, in turn, it doesn't end up BEING the last time. But last Sunday I had quite a bit of wine left in my Franzia box, and so I figured I'd finish it off before The Week began.
And then on Monday I got the phone call from my Dr.'s office making sure I would be at my appointment because my triglycerides were very high and my Dr really needed to go over the results in person. I immediately hung up and started googling what high triglycerides meant and the top 4 factors were heavy alcohol use, belly fat, general overweight body, and lack of exercise. Check, check, check, and check. But the alcohol use stood out. Because I have been running from that truth for years. I had already overcome two addictions, so I told myself I wasn't really an addict. Isn't that something? Ha.
So, anyway. That's where I am today. Still scared and my temper is still very much on the surface. This is kinda the thing I've been heading towards my whole life. I've lived around it and tried to handle it, control it, nip and tuck it so it seemed acceptable and workable. I've centered so much of my time mentally building up ways I could make it work. Because I love it. I really do. And I will truly miss it and it will be hard not to tell myself I can have it. But the cold hard truth is, it does not love me in return.