Saturday, 7 February 2015

The Tide is Trying to Turn

I feel as if all of a sudden I'm swimming against the tide: struggling to stay afloat. 

I've retreated to my blog ( via my phone and GPRS!) in an attempt to remind myself of all things sober. 

We've come away for half term weekend. I'm away from the internet and all my connections with my sober bloggy pals ( as I call them). I'm away from the motivating messages popping up on twitter and Facebook and away from hearing others' stories of success or difficulty. And this was all fine until a couple of hours ago.

While waiting for my family, I flicked through a magazine in a shop, as you do, with no intention to buy it. I caught a headline about Zoe Ball ( a well known DJ and television presenter) and the Strictly tour. Apparently, after the show each night a fair bit of boozing goes on and these late nights were why Zoe looked so tired. 
I was puzzled, remembering that Zoe, once a wild partying ladette, had given up alcohol etc to live a clean life as had her husband Norman AKA FatBoySlim ( another famous DJ, not sure if he's known across the Atlantic though?)

I read on...

I paraphrase a quote from Zoe that she was tee total for 4 1/2 years to fully support her husband giving up alcohol but is now off the wagon again and enjoying a drink on a night out every month or so. Still she regrets drinking the next day and that feeling reminds her of her precious hangovers and confirms her resolve that it must be allowed to get out of hand. 

I continued to think about this all the at back. Has she done it? Gone back to drinking and been able to moderate? Or is it just a matter of time before she slips down the same slope? Either way, it made me really, really, want a glass of wine tonight. 

And it didn't go away. At the house I prepared dinner which was a very simple in-the-oven-and-wait effort. I sat for the 30 minute wait, thinking this is the perfect time to have a glass of wine. Despite my lite ginger ale, my discontent and misery face was back. I felt deprived. 

Now, after dinner, I still feel deprived. I know tonight will pass as I sit with my discomfiture but I'm wondering how many nights like this I'll spend just waiting for the time to pass. Waiting for the feeling of wanting to go away so I can get back to embracing the joyful world of sobriety and having the feelings of hope and reassurance return instead. I want sober to be better. I want to believe it. 

I won't drink tonight but I'm surprised, approaching my 2 year soberversary, that I suddenly find myself in such a state of woe from such slight triggers. Just goes to show sobriety cannot be taken for granted and no matter how confident we are, we cannot say with certainty that we've got it licked. 

Zoe Ball never made a publicity event out of going sober. It just became the way she now lived. I'm going to follow what happens with great interest, and perhaps a little envy. 

I hope you are all feeling a little cheerier than me this Saturday night. Til next time. X

12 comments :

  1. Rachel - love your blog and love your book. I relate very much to your post. You see, I was sober for 2.5 years, and in late 2013, I just kind of slid into a glass of wine a la your character Zoe, and just while I was sitting in the kitchen one Friday night. Well, fast forward to the end of 2014 - not a pretty picture! Moderation is a joke for me. It took a little more than a year to turn that train wreck around - you can read a bit more of it on my blog if you want the details of how moderation DOES.NOT.WORK, at least not if you have spent a fair amount of time getting and staying sober. The good news is I didn't forget or lose a lot of the insight I got in my sober time; the bad news is I won't get that 'lost' year back. You don't have to go there, and it's not worth it! At least for me, nothing - absolutely nothing - to envy!

    Happy to report that I am now on Day 37, and feeling pretty good about it. It was hard to restart and it took a few day 1's, not that much fun. Ups and downs now, of course, and if I had a magic wand, I'd just wave it over that lost year and reverse that first glass of wine because it made NOTHING better. But it is what it is and I did learn from it, I hope I can share some of that with you and maybe lift your spirits tonight..

    Happy Sober Weekend!

    Hugs,

    SR

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  3. Hi
    Third attempt here lol! I am nearly 7 years sober. Came across your blog a few weeks ago and like to see how you are doing. I have been were you are many times but it does pass. I attend AA meetings,couldn't do it without it and the people in there. Second attempt I might add. What helps me is looking through the glass so to speak..how I will feel after the bender I know I would end up on. As for Zoe...if she does have a problem with alcohol then its a matter of time because you cant control it and believe me I've tried! We have a saying in AA.. a social drinker can become an alcoholic but an alcoholic can never become a social drinker! I wish you well on your journey.

    big hugs

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  4. I think that whatever you're trying to abstein from then you do need to remind yourself to keep your triggers and coping strategies 'hardwired'. Your blog post seems to indicate you rely a lot on others for the strength and support; which is good but it's ultimately you who did not have the wine. Take strength from that.

    Best Wishes.

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  5. Hope things have turned around. Of course I don't like that you are struggling and having these cravings but it makes you seem that much more human. Reading about other people failing at moderation keeps me from thinking it is a good idea.

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  6. I've realised that folk who could give up alcohol no bother are those who don't need to. You know that when it's a major part of thought and angst it's best to be tee total. If it's an important part of life when you drink, then it's best not to drink, and any doubts and sense of loss that occur can be seen as proving that it's a bad idea to give into it. reading this blog over the last few months has reinforced my own drive to remain sober. Ive never been able to drink moderately personally and have had periods of optimistic thoughts that I could drink sensibly but even thinking these thoughts when sensible drinkers never even have to think about it make me realise I'm not ever really going to be a sensible drinker and need to remain sober

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  7. Oooo I really like this post! I've been sober since July 2011 & I'd just like to say that I think we ALL would like to drink like that, but I know in my heart I'd just become that crazy addicted person that I loathed every night after a good time with Mr. Bacardi. He was so smug!
    Everything in my life is so much better without him. ....
    I wrote him a goodbye letter 3 and a half years ago & I'm not about to let him come back home!! Lol.
    Rachel, I love your blog & know you have such a much better life now. It seems to look attractive at times, but going back into that black hole would be even harder to crawl out of the next time. All the best to you girl!

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  8. Oooo I really like this post! I've been sober since July 2011 & I'd just like to say that I think we ALL would like to drink like that, but I know in my heart I'd just become that crazy addicted person that I loathed every night after a good time with Mr. Bacardi. He was so smug!
    Everything in my life is so much better without him. ....
    I wrote him a goodbye letter 3 and a half years ago & I'm not about to let him come back home!! Lol.
    Rachel, I love your blog & know you have such a much better life now. It seems to look attractive at times, but going back into that black hole would be even harder to crawl out of the next time. All the best to you girl!

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    1. From below, I'm doing the one with one eye though !!

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  9. Patti, thanks for your comments and support. It always helps having reassurance from someone further down the path. I'm cool, just had a bt of a mind wander.
    Funnily, I am mid way thro making a minion bday cake for my son

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Go on, spill.

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