Hitting the reset…


you are not a tree

Jeez. I don’t understand how time goes by so fast some days, and creeps by on others.

This holiday weekend was one of those fast-moving times. I had to work on Friday morning, but besides that-I can barely remember what happened when over the last few days.

I know I ate at Olive Garden, went on a nine mile hike, Saw “Now you See me,” went swimming a few times, and got a lot of much needed sleep. The details though, I can barely remember.

The strangest part is that minute by minute, I’ve felt more clear-headed than I have in years.

Today has been nine days since my last sip of alcohol. I hesitate to talk about it, but I don’t know how to deal with things without sharing so I am probably going to continue to do so. I don’t know my ultimate plan. I’m not yet comfortable publicly labeling myself.

I do know that for me, alcohol doesn’t have a positive place in my life right now. I realized that I’ve never had a healthy relationship with drinking, and I probably never will. I’m coming to terms with the fact that even though I may not need¬†to drink daily, or even often, I’ve turned to wine during times when I’ve felt emotionally unstable. I’ve also come to the realization that every bad decision I’ve ever made has been under the influence, and none of my most cherished moments occurred while drinking. What’s the point?

More than that, I’ve never known when enough is enough. I think in a lot of ways, I have used alcohol in a very similar way that I used my eating disorder… to drown out my emotions and try to take back some control, when in reality-both behaviors have created more chaos in my life.¬†

The last nine days have been eye-opening and full of ups and downs. I haven’t had any strong cravings to drink, but I’ve had overwhelming emotions that usually would have caused me to reach my buddy “Pinot.”

Day to day, not drinking hasn’t a big deal to me at all. In fact, in some ways it’s absolutely wonderful. I wake up clear-headed. I am saving money. I don’t have to battle the urge to drink more, or to hide the fact that I’m drinking more than my boyfriend. I’m craving exercise. I’ve been eating healthier and haven’t had a single urge to act on any of my eating issues. I am being forced to learn to deal with my emotions.

That’s not to say that the last 9 days have been easy. The worst part? Being forced to deal with my emotions. I’ve become so accustomed to having a glass of wine in my hand whenever shit hits the fan, whenever I’m stressed, or even when I’m happy or celebrating.

It’s been difficult to think about the prospect of living my life without ever drinking again. I’ll be fine and happy, going about my day, when I all of a sudden remember that both my and my boyfriend’s birthdays are both in the next month. I haven’t done a birthday sans alcohol in over 13 yrs.

I also know that there is much to be celebrated in this life, and alcohol isn’t really anything I want to celebrate right now. I’m excited about learning more about myself, how to finally really deal with life, and to get back to the things that actually make me happy. The last week I have taken the time to examine myself and my life, and I’ve realized that most of the things in my life that make me happy don’t involve drinking at all.

For now, I’m going to try my best to indulge in those things as much as possible.

Here’s to a life full of building new friendships, strengthening relationships, hiking, improvising, writing, exercising, and treating myself with all the respect that I know that I deserve.

I have no idea what the future will bring me, but for now-I owe it to myself to be the very best version of myself, one day at a time.

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  • Heath Allyn

    It’s great that you have that clarity of vision and realization. I don’t drink at all mainly because I hate the taste, I’ve never had a good experience with it and mostly because I generally do not like people when they are drunk. People who I normally love and think are awesome become obnoxious idiots when under the influence and I feel my “connection” to them muted behind a hazy veil and I don’t like that. Also, I really like my mind and the way it operates and I don’t want to chemically emss with that.

    I also suck at willpower and so, in an effort to try and be healthy, I’m really glad I don’t like alcohol or I’d probably be fat and drunk a lot.

    My issues are definitely food issues and while I have not been able to overcome them lately, at least I recognize them. All you can do is stay vigilant and deduce what path is right for you. Your level of self-awareness is great and important though and that’s the first and most important step in any journey.

  • tamera young

    Love it!

  • CarissaJaded

    Thanks Heath, and thanks for stopping by! You’re lucky that you had enough willpower not to start with bad habits to begin with. Now that’s self awareness! I agree though with your reasoning behind not drinking. I too like my mind… much better when it’s not being screwed with. I’m funnier, quicker, and a lot less slurrier.

  • Heath Allyn

    Oh, like I said, I have my demons, just not alcohol. I’ve kicked diet sodas completely. Have almost completely kicked sugar/sweets. Now I need to stop eating so many burgers and fries and get my health back under control. I used to be a lot heavier, but am currently in my worst shape in about 10 years. That’s my current battle.

  • asplenia

    Congratulations! I don’t think it’s easy to even admit this kind of thing so I give you credit for your courage. You’re the second blogger I read that is coming to terms with this recently, maybe it’s something in the air. :)

  • CarissaJaded

    Thanks Homie!

  • CarissaJaded

    What’s the other blog!? I’m interested in hearing other people’s experience!

  • Danielle

    I have so much respect for the fact that you are taking stock of the value something like alcohol adds to your life and making the choice to give it the boot when that value was missing. Mad props to you. A good life is all about reading the feedback and you seem to be doing just that!

  • allison writes

    I haven’t been drunk since September 2012 – and alcohol has been in the forefront of my life since 1999, so that’s been a big deal. I’ve had a few beers or mixed drinks, and even gotten a slight buzz since then, but compared to how I used to be, that is extreme moderation. Those instances have been incredibly rare, also. I feel really grown up and proud, but there HAVE been times when I really crave it, almost to the extent it cripples me. I’ve had a couple people here to talk to about it, and I REALLY want to write about it because it fascinates me that there is NO family history of addiction, but I genuinely think I could become an alcoholic if I stayed on that path.

    Anyway, sorry to leave my life story on your blog, but it just made me smile (in a twisted way) to see this and realize it’s not just me being a horrible addict-type person, that it can happen to others.

  • CarissaJaded

    No, I love hearing your story! Keep sharing. It feels good anyway to get it out.

  • http://www.ftcs.wordpress.com/ Clevelandpoet

    damn you with your serious posts!
    I won’t make a joke
    I won’t make a joke
    But seriously I’m happy for you. Without ever meeting you (boo) but having tons of tweet/blog/chat interaction I’ve seen the ebb and flow of your emotions and being. I’ve seen changes and while clearly I’m on board with drinking I can fully understand the reasons for changing. Clarity and new visions are a wonderful thing. Your writing and creativity I think have a chance to really blossom.

    reflection and meditation can be so key to health.