**There may be TRIGGERS in this post for my sober followers, so if you don’t want to read about alcohol consumption after sobriety, you may want to stop now.**
On Friday I will be 4 years sober. FOUR YEARS.
Or will I? Can I even say that considering I had about 4oz of Tequila Rose this weekend?
I’ve been struggling so hard these last few months (really at least a year and a half) on feeling like I don’t want to do this anymore. I am not even sure I can put it into words without it sounding like horrible rationalizing, but because I want to be real and I really need to get it off my damn chest, I’m going to try.
So.. Sunday. Let’s start here.
I was at a party. It was pretty low key. No one pushing alcohol, but I knew only 2-3 people out of about 50. There wasn’t really anyone who knows I’m sober. We were having a great time, and my friend was discussing her drink. I’m not even sure how it happened, but she asked if I wanted to try it. I considered it for a second, and said “Sure” and just like that, I took a tiny sip of alcohol and went back to staring at the fire. My heart was pounding, and my thoughts were running wild. I waited for the world to stop and crash in on itself, or someone to come and smack me or something, but nothing happened. The world kept on spinning. I don’t blame my new friend. She didn’t know me back when I made this choice, and honestly, it’s not a thing I discuss that much anymore because it’s never come up ((we usually hang out with our kids).. It was a harmless question to her I could have said no. I just didn’t.
Later I would drink a bit more. I don’t think I had more than 4oz, but it was alcohol nonetheless. There was no buzz. I didn’t even feel that bad about it. But now, when I sit here thinking about what would have been my four year sober-versary on Friday, I think “Was that a relapse?” “if I don’t drink anything else, can I just keep counting my numbers?” and “I didn’t even feel anything and made the conscious effort not to drink anything else.. I can keep going, right?”
And this is the vortex in which I get caught. I still struggle to think that I had a problem in the first place. My dad almost died, and I had been drinking a good bit with my friends, and it seemed like a good place in my life to stop for a while and get my bearings. I never said it’d be forever, but I had no REAL idea what my plans were either.
There have been so many times I have admitted out loud that the only reason I was still going was because my daily number had grown so big, and that I’d let everyone else down. It wasn’t about me anymore. I mean, my Dad and I quit together. I had to keep doing it for him, right?
And it’s not like I had any grand plans for quitting drinking, or I want to run right out and get a bottle of wine, and this is where it gets so hard to explain and I don’t want to sound like I’m romanticizing, or rationalizing. I miss being able to have a glass of wine with dinner, or having a drink or two at a party. In my younger days it was all about BARS! I’m not there anymore. I miss being able to do something I want to do. To make the decision for myself, and do it. I honestly feel like I do it out of obligation at this point. I think of the plenty of times I went out and had two drinks and went home. I could do it. It has a lot do with the people I was drinking with too. I feel like I talked myself into a bigger problem than I actually had to get people to respect my choice to be sober. That’s honestly what it comes down to. I feel burdened to a decision I made for myself 4 years ago.
On the other hand, my sobriety set me apart from everyone else. It seemed to earn me respect, and I latched onto that and it was the catalyst that kept everything going. I like feeling like I’m doing something good. It came at a good time in my life, and I finally got my shit together. A hard reset. Now I’m married with a daughter who is my entire world. Life is good, and I want nothing to change that.
I can’t take back anything I do from here on out. I feel like that tiny amount of alcohol brought me to where I am right now, in this moment. Thinking and wondering if I’m making a terrible decision.
Thus here I am at the crossroads baring my soul to a blog, and not quite sure what I am feeling in the grand scheme of things. I guess I can just live my life and see what comes across my lap and see how I react in that situation. I don’t know what else I can do.