100 day challenge followup … “It’s like folding in the middle of a bad poker game”
I’ve received lots of emails from people interested in doing the 100 day challenge. It’s a pledge to not drink for 100 days, no matter what. Even if there’s a zombie apocalypse. Even if all the kittens on your block get squished the same week. even if there’s an amputation. No drinking for 100 days. Some people are well on their way, and will be adding 100 days to their current number. Others are just beginning. Amy is on day 101, Mystery Girl is on day 8. Lilly is 7. Jenny is 33.
I’m day 260, nearly nine months. Sometime i think i’ll revisit the idea of moderation when i get to my one year soberversary. I’ll be on vacation July 1st. I can picture it now.
But I recently wrote: “And really, moderation, god, I love the idea of that. I really really do. sometimes I think I’ll try moderation at one year. but mostly I’m afraid to try. afraid because of what I read online. more than afraid, terrified I guess. I don’t want to fall off and not be able to get back inside again. someone also wrote on my blog something about moderation working for people who don’t really need to moderate…”
for all the times that i half-assed tried to moderate, i was really only white knuckling it. Only drink every second day? OK, let me try to remember, is this an on day or an off day. Only drinking for special events, does today count as special enough? Only drinking twice a week, when does the week start (Sunday or Monday).
It was a lot of noise in my head. and this blog is called “tired of thinking about drinking” because i thought a lot about how much, when, too early, he drank more than i did. Too often.
the truth is, this is easier. Sobriety is easier. I won’t say that being sober is a gigantic walk in the park. it has its challenges. but it is SIGNIFICANTLY easier than trying to manage the consumption of booze. Why is it so hard to quit drinking, especially the first weeks? Cuz we ain’t equipped to cope with life without our security blanket. Our buffer, our ‘off switch’, our ‘equalizer’. But thankfully after 30 days it gets easier, then at 60 days we stop obsessing about reading sober blogs and books. Near 90 days the clouds start to life and we feel more like our old selves.
Thus the 100 day challenge. Our old selves + 10 days for good measure.
So will i drink on my one year anniversary? some days it seems pretty darn tempting. But really, what does that even really mean?
Frankly, it further convinces me that even almost 9 months later, the wolfie voice is still in there. it’s still whispering sweet nothings in my ear. I’m much better at ignoring wolfie. My life is gigantically improved now that i’m sober. If i gave wolfie even a glass of wine, wouldn’t he just get up on his hind legs and start SCREAMING at me? Fun? Not.
In an email to Amy this week, i wrote: “I do not plan to drink. I sometimes play games with myself and say ‘in a week’ when I’m feeling crappy and that seems to be enough to move on through. in a week’s time I’ve forgotten and all is well again. I seem to be able to withstand anything if I think it’s almost over. and then the times of ‘needing’ to withstand are now getting further and further apart, thankfully. so I can say it’s getting easier. a lot easier. and I’m fucking proud of myself. There’s plenty of boozing and alcohol abuse in my extended family. I quit before I had any real problems. I got out early, like folding in the middle of a bad poker game. I just cut my losses and got out.”
if you’d like to do the 100 day challenge, you can read more about it here. Or you can do your own version. Or you can keep playing poker with a loaded deck, cheaters, liars, and phonies… Nah. No time for that shit!