The other day my husband (also sober…we both are approaching our 3 year anniversary) commented we get so much more done on the weekends, and he no longer has to hold things together, now that I am not passed out on the couch all day Sunday…
After my initial ruffled feathers (after all, I had to do it all just as often when he was drinking) I relaxed and agreed.
If you had asked me in those days I would have defended my drinking to the ends of the earth. Everyone else drank…I has a highly paid preofessional job, I was fit, I exercised, our house was clean, I was a volunteer. I drank expensive wine…Yes, from the outside I looked ok.
But…was that true? I had started coming in to work late on Mondays…or calling in sick. The kids often survived on take out Pizza. I was fit, but I felt terrible and was forever covering bloodshot eyes and circles. I was unhappy and I hated myself. I felt weak and betrayed every time I drank more than I wanted to…which was most weekends.
No…I wasn’t fine. And my facade wasn’t nearly as good as I might have imagined.
The last year or so I drank I knew it was a problem. I could not stop once I started. I couldn’t keep to any of my moderation attempts. I even started missing workouts, or going so hungover I’m lucky I don’t injure myself.
I asked him why he didn’t say anything then. He laughed…knowing he was deep into his own problems…and told me I just would have gotten mad or upset.
And there’s the risk. Point out the denial, the problems, the slipping at regular life, and risk upsetting a person who is probably a bit irrational and compulsive. How might attach back.
When we ask our friends and families if we have a problem they often answer with what they think we want to hear. Or what they want to hear for themselves. Because I know I had many heavy drinking friends…and if I needed to quit, so might they!
Instead…get quiet and ask yourself. Ask yourself what you think…I know that little voice inside was begging for me to stop drinking…to stop my self destructive behaviour…to just give myself a break. I was so very tired.
I’m still shocked I listened. But as the booze cleared and my mind grew sharper, that voice celebrated. All those mean, self limiting, self depreciating, self loathing thoughts became a little cheering section. And as time has gone on it has grown into a deep love and faith in myself. I trust myself.
Forget what other people think…what do you think? Are you living today? Because there is a deep Well of freedom, joy and peace and more fun and possibility available in sobriety than I can even begin to describe.
Do it. For you.
Stillness and peace