I woke up on New Years Eve with a decision on my heart. All the signs were there, a clean breakup was the only way to remedy the unhealthy relationship I had found myself in. With boldness and belief for a different trajectory, I dove head first into a new commitment.
You are one bad bitch and I love you, but you bring out the worst in me. You also killed my father, harmed my brother, and you can’t have me, my sanity or my future. You always invite drunk Jessica to the party and although she is hilarious and always truthful, she is tactless, remembers very little and has popped off at far too many people. I know I’ll see you around because we share the same friends. I will be cordial but please respect me when I say I need this break. I hope in the future we can build a healthy friendship, but for now, I need a year without the one we’ve created.
Two weeks into 2020 and boy am I seeing clearly. I rarely waiver in my decisions, I take them on with a fierce heart and once I’ve made up my mind, I am committed. I haven’t struggled in the past two weeks without alcohol, and it might be due to excitement for what is to come but it truly has felt easy. I’d like to think this is largely due to me being obedient to something I felt deep down in my spirit. When it’s right, it’s right. I’m also realistic and aware that I may experience severely low-lows in this year without alcohol, but I’m buckled in and ready for the ride.
Here is what I’ve experienced so far…
My eyes are a clear crystal blue for the first time in a long time. My skin is becoming more vibrant and clearing from blemishes. My sleep is deep, restful and I wake up more energized than before. I wasn’t having alcohol daily, it was primarily on the weekends, but it was excessive in those moments, unhealthy to say the least. I constantly felt puffy, achy and often times detached from myself. I lacked motivation to do the things I would have liked to do more of; writing, reading, being active, and building deep connections with people. I’m doing all of these things now and it feels glorious.
As I believe many of us do, I have been swept up in a whirlwind of over romanticized alcohol, using it as a social buffer, a cure to boredom and I thought it helped me to be more fun and creative. Sure, a glass of wine in a bubble bath still sounds amazing and super sexy, but what’s more enticing is how I feel when I wake up with a clear mind, remembering everything from the night before.
These are some things I have found to be helpful:
Talk to your people. I started by telling my friends individually so they can catch the vision and support me in my goals. It has been very important to me that they know I’m still going to show up, I’m not offended by alcohol, I am a huge advocate of fun, I will still dance and be the wild child they know and love, but I want to be a better version of myself and in turn become a world class friend.
Get you some pregnant friends. Just kidding (kindof, but not at all). My friends who are already sober due to choice or obligation have been super helpful to have as support in this transition. Shameless shoutout to you ladies with the bump!
Find your drank. If I’m in the house and drooling over the thought of a sexy sleek wine glass filled with robust red liquid, you can find me drinking my new favorite flavor of kombucha in a beautiful long-stemmed glass.
HEAR ME. Replace old habits with new, healthier ones. If I’m at the clurrrb, I will be drinking tonic water with lime. Possibly the greatest thing I’ve realized on this journey is IT IS FREE Y’ALL! Rarely will a bar charge you for your soda. Hallelujah.
Save the loot. When I recognize a moment where I would have let the floodgates of my bank account crack for some alcohol… I’m taking that cash and putting it in a vase that I will open in 2021. More specifically, it’s a ceramic vase that has a tiny top so I can put my money in but will have to break it if I want to get it out. As my dear friend reminded me, I would likely be dipping into that pool the second I thought a non-budgeted latte sounded appealing. Know your limits people. I gave up alcohol but I am no saint.
I have found it to be important to realize and openly admit that I am not invincible, but it is equally as important for me to celebrate that I am tackling each temptation as it comes. I wasn’t out of control, but I wasn’t in control either. In the short time of walking on this path I am already learning so much about myself, my friends, what I want and how I want to live my life. I’m refreshed, refocused, reenergized and I am expectantly awaiting more gems to be revealed along the way.
If there is anything specific you want to know about as I embark on this journey feel free to let me know! I’m an open book and welcome your questions.
Please know, no businesses were harmed nor will go out of business in the making of this sobriety.