600 bottles of wine not consumed

so i’m calculating all of the happy 50 day and happy 100 day notices for today. and i scroll down and there’s someone on day 599 and a half.

oh. it’s me.

then i started laughing. like laugh-out-loud-guffaw laughing. 600 days? jesus, who manages to NOT have a glass of wine for 600 days? No one. Oh wait. Me. I’ve done that.  Fuckers. Do you know how long 600 days is? Yeah, it’s a long time. I am still chuckling, literally. Like, really. That’s 600 times I have not consumed alcohol after supper. Add to that the 100-ish times I’ve not had day-time alcohol (weekends, vacations). So probably it would come out to 700 individual times when I “could” have been drinking, that instead I’ve been sober. 700 times?

Did I say have to say “no” 600-700 times? Certainly not. when i’m at home working or baking or reading, i never think about drinking and i just do my thing.  when i serve alcohol to clients, i recognize that booze exists, but i am not internally struggling. I just pour myself tonic water. How many times have I had to explain why i’m not drinking since i quit drinking 600 days ago? i can’t think of one single time since last July. which means that mostly only in the first year of my sobriety did anyone ever have a question, and since i’ve crossed the one year mark, i have explained my soberness exactly zero times.

how much money have i saved? $10 a day so that’s … yes, that’s $6000! good god. how many evenings would i have spent doing nothing?  600. how many days would i have been waiting for “wine o’clock”? all 600. every single one of them.


instead i have 800 sober penpals. instead (this week) i made bagels. instead (Saturday and Sunday) i got 12 hrs sleep each night.

instead I choose me, put me first. do things for me. take care of me. not always in the most active way, but at least i’m taking care of me by NOT doing something destructive, wasteful, and soul-destroying. I haven’t been drowning ‘me’ in wine. I still have crappy moods and shitty days and irritating moments. and then they fade and i move on. i get treats (mostly) when i need them. i could take better care of me i suppose. more time off, more baths, more talcum powder. I read a lot more than i used to. I still forget and have sugar mid-morning and then crash. I still forget and stay up too late watching the Great British Bake Off. I still forget and tell my husband that he’s acting like a 6 year old (he swears he’s at least 7).

but i will never forget the evening i started this blog. i remember i was sitting in the tub, deciding to drink, to quit, to drink, to quit. i felt like a person possessed.

for me, wolfie is mostly tamed now. he’s been tamed for awhile. i see him stick his nose out occasionally, but i swiftly (and harshly) slap him silly. I give him a kick up the anus. and i say “fuck you wolfie. you’re not longer in charge of ME.”

oh wait, that means i’m in charge of me? hahaha. ok then. time to get some real lunch (not cookies) and time to clean off my desk and do accounting (fun). well, just let me finish this episode of the bake off… oh and then there’s the canada/us hockey game. it’s the olympics. i haven’t seen anything else, just this one game.

ok. i’ll be a grown-up tomorrow. or the next day. i’ll start soon i promise.

anyway, this is me reporting in for today.


hugs from me,
belle xo

ps. oh my god. 600 bottles of wine not consumed. 600. imagine what that looks like in your grocery cart. 600. it’s a stupidly large number. holy.


Happy Day 50 to Laura67!

Happy Day 50 to jgrh!

Happy Day 50 to Wine Monster!

Happy Day 50 to Telling The Words!

Happy Day 50 to Me-alcohol=?!

Happy Day 50 to Kennedy!

Happy Day 50 to Spell It Out Loud!

Happy Day 100 SarahinSurrey!

Happy Day 500 to SoberKat!

Happy Day 600 to me 🙂


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

  • I love how you did the math! $6000 is a lot of money to drink away…I wonder how much I will save?? 🙂

  • Congratulations, a bit of maths and google searching tells me the liquid in 600 bottles of wine is the weight of a horse. Nice.

  • Love this! I have now spent some time on the internet trying to find a picture of 600 bottles of wine, with no luck, and then I went down the route of 450 litres, but that didn’t work either. I might have to draw you a very bad picture. Anyway, that’s absolutely awesome. You are wonderful.

  • Congrats to all of you!! 600 bottles of wine not consumed 😉 Well done! And think of all the wine, beer and spirits team 100/180/365 etc. did NOT consume together. Must be a big swimmingpool full, at least! And all the money we saved.. A nice little house in the hills or near the sea with this big swimming pool.

  • That is so inspiring and amazing!!!!!!!!! Just what I need to hear today…its scary how close I got to drinking today and your success is just what I need to hear to stay motivated. 600 days is incredible!

  • Doing a happy dance for you Belle!!!! 600!!!!!!taking caring of You!!!! Wow!
    Thanks again and again and again and again for your posts… So many times ( like this one) your posts are so timely and seem to speak to ME ….. Right when I need it! Jumping high fives!

  • Heartfelt congratulations everyone! My husband is out of town for a few days. In the past, to celebrate having the house to myself, I’d drink myself silly, starting in the afternoon and continuing through the night. Tonight, on day 5o SOBER, I’m trying a recipe with red quinoa and purple potatoes, watching funny shows with my daughter, being a present and responsible parent. The incredible loving support of Belle, and the positive, caring vibe of the community in this blog has made a world of difference to me. Glitter, fireworks and ticker tape to all who are celebrating another beautiful day of sobriety xxx

  • Congratulations, Belle! You and your site have helped me stay accountable for the past 44 days. You’re setting an awesome example for those of us still struggling with Wolfie and I am grateful for all that you do 🙂

  • A big, fat congratulations to you, Belle! 600 days is amazing. Especially when I can’t even get 2 weeks.

    I’m throwing confetti here in my house for you!

  • I am once again, as I am daily, inspired by you Belle and by everyone here. I’m early-on so some days I start out thinking…really? Can I really do this today? I come here and realize, I can. Love you Belle…love you all.

    • Joy, inspiration flows freely from Belle and the others who make this community a safe and healthy place to be while getting our feet under us and realizing that we can do it. We don’t have to be alone and don’t have to go to meetings every five hours to keep our car on the track. My husband illustrated for me one day that slewing from one ditch at the side of the road to the other side’s ditch is not the same as driving carefully down the road and staying in your lane. Yes, they average out about the same but… the way to get there is very different. Does that make sense ?~! The car analogy works for me on many levels and I like the way it’s used here in TTAD, too.

      Thanks all of you for being here every day and Belle for hosting the lovefest.

  • Trust me I became rich overnight when I stopped drinking – I was a pub drinker – £2.20 a pint 10 pints roughly a day… blah blah … it was £100s a month! Now I don’t earn a fraction what I used to earn trust me I couldn’t afford my old habit it would bankrupt me!

  • Aw yeah! You are such an inspiration to so many! I thank God every day that I found you and this community when I did. I laughed out loud at this post (slap that woolfie silly and kick him in the anus!) Thank you, thank you, thank you!

  • Congratulations on 600, Belle! And thanks for the uplifting post 🙂 Should have read it before emailing. It’s helped shift some of my “Aghhh, can’t do this!” mood already. MTM. xxx

  • Yay, Belle!!! 600 is amazing!! Love thinking it in quantity of wine, it is quite astounding, isn’t it?? Even on my meager 20 days I’ve saved at least $200, and that’s not counting drinks out! Reading this first thing in the morning was a fabulous way to start the day and it’s so inspirational to hear that you have mostly kicked wolfie to the curb. Knowing that’s possible makes it easier to keep going through this hard part. Thank you!! xo

  • Congratulations Belle! I have a friend who calls counting days a “Count Up” the opposite of a “Count Down” because everyday is the new and exciting goal, not just when the “Count Down” is over. Way to count up 600! You are an inspiration.

  • FUCK YEAH BELLE! That’s amazing and wonderful. Thank you so much for creating the Team 100 and the sober penpal army. It’s been of immeasurable value to me. Well, measurable in that I’m finding this the most rewarding, easiest, less-loneliest way of going sober I’ve ever tried. For the first time ever I actually have a sense that I can do this, that I’m not alone or weird in trying to do.

    600 bottles not drunk is a hell of an achievement well done. Thanks for sharing your journey, for calling Wolfie out and kicking his ass!

  • CONGRATS! That is a shit load of mind altering chemicals that never made it to your brain cells. Think how many brain cells you saved over 600 days???
    777 trillion or so….YIKES.
    We love you, Belle. Keep on keepin on…

  • Great, great post, Belle! I love your “insteads”…just so clear how many things we give up for booze. And your description of being possessed by the wine…God, that is so true and so hideous. Congratulations on your $6000 spent on life instead of more shitty days in prison. And thank you so much for sharing your journey and helping all of us on ours. Six thousand hugs to you!

  • 600 days. Wow. You are an inspiration. And you make it so much FUN for all of us. I always imagined it would be a sad, sad day when I finally kicked the booze, but it hasn’t been. It’s been a real eye opener. You have opened up a whole new world for so many of us. Enjoy your 600 day treat, whatever it is, and think of us all smiling down on you. Looking forward to seeing what the next 600 days brings you.

  • Belle – I love that you can scroll down and see ‘Oh. its me.’
    You don’t count anymore, how fab is that, that must be a pleasure treat right there.
    When was it that you stopped counting the days? weeks? months?
    Congrats to all the 50s, and well done Sarahinsurrey 100 days – yes!!
    Santa Cruz, day 45, I think-no I know:-)

    • i stopped counting mentally after day 30 (my mental math is poor). i celebrated months then until one year. since then i’ve mostly just stopped counting entirely.

  • I love this post it really made me laugh. I have had a real tough time and let Wolfie back in, I got out of my sober car and its been seized and dropped back on top of the mountain, but today I got the keys back, I have put Wolfie in a kennel and I am ready to start again at Day 1 – am e mailing you separately. Fabulous achievement Belle – I wonder if I will ever get to 600 days 🙂

  • 600 bottles of wine!! Boo yah! I am only at 82, a savings of 820.00 so far. I just gave myself a high five!
    Thank you for all of your help, for me it has been a life and sanity saver!
    You are a rock star!

  • Oh, Belle. This is such a great post. Thanks so much for this. It really started my day out on a lovely note! Joan B.

  • Congratulations to everyone on this list.

    Belle, you are a wonder! 600 days and look how many of us you’ve encouraged along the way. Thank you from the bottom of my sober heart!

    Joyce xx