Recovery is another word for freedom

As i was shopping today at the specialty wine store for a valentine’s catering event, i decided right there in the store that i was going to drink wine tomorrow night.  buying all this nice wine for a wine tasting, can you blind-taste-test which one is Italian versus Chilean versus French versus American? Clients love this kind of shit.  Really love it. It’s like an ice breaker that gets everyone talking, they vote on which one is the italian wine, then we do a great unveiling, and the one italian guest in the crowd will gloat, etc.

And i thought, “yeah, i’m having some too.”  because, you know, fuck it.  i have a cold (this happened the last time i had a cold, too). and cuz it’ll be valentine’s day. and because really this has gone on long enough.

I came home and said to husband: “it feels like i’m going to drink tomorrow night.”

He says what he always says … nothing. I think he’s used to me doing this, periodically, i just lose direction and starting to drift.

I head out to the third store for more specialty food stuff, and i buy myself some cranberry juice and ginger ale to mix.  for tomorrow.

Because like before, when i get to this very adamant place where I feel that I want to drink right now, I go ahead and decide to WAIT for a week and then reassess.  If i still want to do a three-bottle-red-wine-taste-test in a week’s time, I can do it then.  Not tomorrow.  Not without true thought and consideration.  I am not ‘falling off the wagon’ because of an impulse decision. Or when i have a cold.  I’m just not flaking out now. Later maybe. not now.

Next week. i’ll revisit it again next week.  There will be plenty of future opportunities when i can drink again, if i so decide, it doesn’t have to be valentine’s day, it doesn’t have to be tomorrow.

NOT when i have a cold. NOT when i just want to pitch it all in and say ‘fuck it’.  NOT NOW.

i will read some more of the new recovery book tonight.  and i’m going to play cards with my husband. he always wins. and i will go to bed and wake up tomorrow feeling better.  this is the truth. it always works out this way.


I want to put this online, to hold myself accountable. I want to document the noise in my head. I'm tired of thinking about drinking. date of last drink: june 30, 2012

  • Super glad to read these words right now. I was feeling antsy so I snuck out to catch “Mockingjay” up the street and bought a mini bottle of wine on the way home. Just in case. Not for me necessarily. For whoever. The movie is almost justification to drink, actually. But not quite.

  • Reblogged this on Tired of Thinking About Drinking and commented:

    when i was about 7 months sober, one month before the 100 day sober challenge was born, i was fairly certain that i was going to “plan to relapse” … It was a crappy day, i had a cold, there was wine everywhere. giving up just seemed like a good idea …

  • My husband and I are big fans of the TV show M.A.S.H. I remember one particular episode when the lead character, Hawkeye Pierce (who was a big drinker – they even had a still in their tent where they made gin) comes into the bar after a really difficult day in surgery. He looks at the bartender and says, “Pour me a drink…I really need it today.”

    And then he stops, looks at the bartender again and says, “No, nevermind. I’ll come back when I want it, not when I need it.”

    Now as an alcoholic I ALWAYS wanted it, but now that I’m sober I’ve recognized that it was more need than want.

    Not sure if that makes any sense but it’s what popped into my pea brain this morning.


  • Honesty – gotta love it. Not something that I knew a lot of when I was drinking, but these days it’s something that helps me look at myself and my motives. And you write about your motives, which is fantastic. I think in the past, I wouldn’t have needed any reason other than I was breathing and there was booze. ‘Nuff said. I know that I came down with the case of the “fuck-its” often when I was trying to control my drinking, and justified and rationalized my way through bottles of wine and later vodka. I am in the hospitality industry, and wine tastings was a big thing for me. I was actually pretty decent at it (lots of practice! gulp gulp…purple teeth, etc…) And now, the way I see it for this alcoholic, is that it’s just comparing poisons. This poison has some red currant and cedar notes while this other poison has gooseberry and a touch of petrol. It’s just poison to me now, as the moment I pick that up, I am off to the races. Bad news for me.

    Have fun playing cards, have a wonderful rest, get well.

    Thanks for sharing 🙂

    • thanks for this. i’m glad/lucky/relieved i can slow down enough to see my motives BEFORE i drink. i remember too well a time when that wasn’t the case. thanks for pointing it out to me… i appreciate your insights : ) and i replayed your ideas of “poison + oak” last night during the wine tasting. it was kinda funny … helpful, very helpful, thanks!

  • Pangs all around the globe! Me, too.

    I love how you give yourself a week–that just means NOT drinking has become a way of life, not just not drinking. I am now in the habit of giving myself the day, the night, maybe a few days (after this next project, or after I finally lose those 2 extra pounds, which will be in a few days IF I don’t slam wine)… DEF a great idea! And nah, you don’t want to go down in a flash of a few gulps that don’t taste good and burn your stomach lining anyway–you’ve come too far and gotten through too many pangs! 🙂

    PLUS, I know that the LAST thing I need when I really really want to down wine is to down wine. So, I say to myself, WAIT. Just wait until you feel better–could be in a few hours, could be tomorrow. If you still want to drink when you’re not feeling so desperate, then go for it. That’s this weird self-preservation thing that’s kicked in, and it’s def an ally: the worst thing for me would be to drink when I want to, which is usually when I’m feeling ansty or bad. And, when I wait, then I am thinking more clearly and am happier–and those two things alone make all the difference in my actual desire to drink.

    • god, that’s it, isn’t it? when i want to drink is exactly when i shouldn’t. never when down, feeling crappy, all it would do would be to make the down/unhappy larger/worse. I used to call that feeling “dig a pit”… like when we listen to sad songs, watch sad movies, and then we might as well just dig a pit and lie down in it! It’s like pms gone wrong… and when i’m feeling “dig a pit” is definitely the worst time to drink… here’s to willfully, consciously staying OUT of the pit…

      • Totally! Pit, ditch, whatever we call it, my new thing is to well, stay out of it! I can stay out of it, I don’t have to go there. Most of the time now, I see my “heading toward the ditch” thoughts are confusing and tiresome–way too complicated to deal with. I used to drink when I was heading toward the ditch, but now…I know I don’t have to even go near it. Give up, stay away, don’t let the magnetic call of wine drag me into it… So, yeah, that’s progress, right? Thank you for your hilarity and awesomeness. 🙂

  • I can relate to this too. I am on a fundraising committee for special needs folks and they decided to do a WINE tasting event fundraiser! I started to squirm in my chair, but then quickly decided to lie and say that my husband is taking me on an overnight trip for my birthday (back in November) but the destination was a surprise, because I couldn’t think of a place quickly. I actually made my husband take me on a one night getaway so that I wasn’t lying and we had a blast without wine and without kids. Funny part of the story is that the Wine tasting event got “cancelled” mid week and they rescheduled it for Feb. 15th…this Friday! I am not so sure I can go…the smell and the clinking of the glasses and the pretty colors…it will be too tempting. And if I’m going to drink again…it certainly isn’t going to be there with strangers!!! Belle it is so good to hear that I am not alone in my ‘thinking about drinking’ and then realizing it’s just a desire that passes. I love the way you all write about it!

  • This post and these comments are also timely because I am reading this book right now about a woman who takes a year off drinking and after 11 months accidentally has two sips of champagne and it sets her brain on fire. I wondered if that would be me. Then I knew it would be me. Whether that means I would go nuts and go on a bender I don’t know – but I could completely relate when she talked about this surge of electricity coursing through her brain after 11 months off after just two sips.

    But I digress. The waiting technique is an excellent one indeed. Sure, you can decide to drink again – you always can. But all the work and thought and introspection you, and Mrs D, have put into your sobriety, how anticlimatic would it be to drink on a whim – if nothing else. So, yes, shelve that for tonight. And be sure to tell us how you feel this time next week…

    Happy Lurve Day everyone <3

  • weird when those feelings hit, huh ?~! It happens still to me after 29 years-just the smell sets off my diseased synapses and it frightens me in a world where not much scares me.

  • It’s funny you should write this. Last night I was standing at the pantry looking for inspiration for what to cook for dinner and there was half a bottle of red wine staring at me – Mr D’s – and I had a really overwhelming impulse to take a big swig out of it.. just right there and then while I was leaning in and sort of hidden behind the door. It felt like such a private moment, no-one was there and no-one could see me and I just felt like I was going to do that and take a big fat swig and it would be my little secret. Intense man. Intense.