K says: “so grateful to be a part of this challenge – it is helping me in so many ways.”
then I say “can you elaborate?” and she says …
Well, i have to say that i have about 100 reasons not to drink, but when i have a craving or someone asks me if i want to go out for beers … i often can’t think of a single one of my reasons to not drink. [it’s going to make me feel like absolute hell tomorrow? it’s expensive? i will look like a fool when one of my roommates wakes up to pee at four in the morning and i’m alone in the dark living room, hammered and still drinking like tomorrow is not a word in my vocabulary?] All of those reasons seem to disappear when I want to drink. Or i tell myself i will behave this time and will drink normally, and go to bed when everyone else does. (i never do.)
Being a part of the challenge has eliminated alcohol as an option for me, so when asked to go drinking in the last few weeks, my answer is an absolute, “no thank you.” It’s the first and only thing that comes to my mind.
also what i like about the challenge is that it is 100 days — not forever. in the past, i have gone from drinking my brains out, to saying i am going to stop forever. and then a really enticing opportunity to drink would arise and i would think, “well forever can start tomorrow, or after xyz event.” A hundred days is a very short time compared to forever, and for now it is a number that seems more significant than 30 and easier to swallow than, say, 365.
It’s funny that K wrote about “forever” because I had just written something along the same lines to Carrie. And I wrote this for Carrie twice, cuz in the space of 24 hrs, she asked virtually the same question two separate times 🙂
I do believe that thinking about ‘never’ gets us stuck. in early sobriety, everything is hard. so the BIG idea of ‘never’ is just too much to do right now.
the only plan I have is to not drink today. and perhaps not drink tomorrow. the rest of it, I’ll deal with it when it comes. and the longer I’m sober, the more I realize that I’m likely to continue treating it the same way I have up to now. and that is a huge giant fucking relief.
is it never? I don’t even have to think about what never means. I just have to do my thing. and keep doing it. rise, lather, repeat. sure, I’m sure that ‘never’ gives a kind of comfort, but I’m just the kind of girl who hates rigid rules and might just rebel. so I know me well enough, that if I’ve found something that’s working, I’m not changing it. not even a tiny bit. I’m just doing this. again. and again tomorrow 🙂
All of the muddled up thoughts (“is this forever?”) do stop. It’s just wolfie rebelling, trying to find loopholes, ways out, ways to drink again. and here’s the TRUTH: you’re doing fine. even if you don’t believe me. [this is why you’ve reached out for advice from others, because you truly can’t tell… that you’re ALREADY doing everything right.]
you’re not drinking. that’s it. That’s all you have to do 🙂