My Lists

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Didn't make it but all still good

Well, we fell off the wagon.  I almost wish I could say it was bad, we made fools of ourselves, etc but we didn't.  We just didn't stick to our guns on the Dry January thing.

Oh well.  Try, try again.  The difference is that every day I don't drink feels really good, and the guilt I feel when I drink, and especially then have to blog about it, is horrible.

It's hard to know now how I feel about it all.

What I do know is that even at 2 full glasses a night, I think that's still way over health standards.  It may not disrupt my sleep as much as a bottle would but it certainly is empty calories and impacts my motivation to exercise.  Also, the potential is just still too much there, for regular drinking, that a bad night WILL happen.

I think sober is better, it's just a matter of getting there.  I'm still happy with all the improvements in my life, though, so I'm going to keep working on this!

Congratulations to all those who are still in dry January and to those who are really making it stick.  It's not as if I disagree in any way!  It's where I'd rather be, I just need to keep pushing through these cravings.

What's funny is that I don't think we would have drunk had we gone to that party Saturday night.  But son got the flu so we stayed home and drank the wine we were going to bring for the host.  Sigh.

The next night my folks arrived and the four of us, seriously, split a bottle of white and there was a glass still in it the next day.

Maybe I am making progress.  I normally would have been on to a second bottle after wearing out a few glasses on the first!

I'm not one of these people who wishes she could drink normally.  I'm so beyond that.  I want to not drink at all.  This stuff is poison!  It's just such a mind over matter game against the wine witch!!  Maybe all this guilt and practice is still getting me to where I want to be!

Hugs to all,

HD

Wednesday, January 10, 2018

Declarations

Just realized it was Day 8 and I made it through a week! 

Last night we had a sporting event.  It helped that we had to eat dinner early around 5pm, drive 45 minutes and we didn't get home until close to 9pm.  I never would have drank under these circumstances so drinking didn't even cross my mind.  It was like having a "free" night from cravings.

I prefer not drinking.  I just read LIA LEON's blog and the recent post resonated with me.  When I am unhappy or stressed it's easier for me to see why I am craving wine and almost easier to stop the craving.  Whereas when I am feeling content, not stressed, overall happy....that's when I have visions of sitting down and drinking the liquid mellow. 

I know that visualizing that I won't stop at drink 2, will wake up thirsty, my face will be blotchy and I'll have interrupted sleep will be important to think about!

For now, I'm just really trying to deal with each day/situation as it comes.

Declaring things helps.  My first blogging attempt declared that I was going alcohol free.  That got me a lot of mileage......until it didn't.  I didn't really tell others but the blogging support kept me going.  Once I was proud of myself and hit 125 days then it sort of lost it's magical power.

I have tried since but I always let down my blog.  It's as if it just isn't enough of a draw to keep me from drinking.  I have joined the throngs of the quitters and starters.

So this time, so far, I have done 3 things.  Yes, I started blogging again.  It still helps even though it's not enough.  I also told the hubby I needed to change and he agreed to do a dry January with me.  I doubt he'll stick with it but I know I need to get those days under my belt.

Then, and I was really waffling on this, my friend invited us over on Saturday evening so she could cook for us and I could meet her boyfriend and also her sister.  They are big drinkers.  She never mentions her sister without mentioning what a big drinker she is.  When I saw her yesterday I did the unthinkable.  I told her that we were really looking forward to dinner but that we weren't drinking and hoped that was okay.  She was surprised and it was maybe a little awkward but now she knows!  She won't be expecting us to drink and I told her we would bring our sparkling water with us!

This is the first time I really have declared I'm not drinking and so I am looking forward to observing what happens to other people as they drink.  I have a feeling we'll be trying to find an excuse to leave early but we'll see.  Maybe it will be fun afterall!  Should be good food anyway that I will actually taste and savor and more importantly REMEMBER!  There have been far too many times where I have had good meals that I didn't take the time to enjoy!

Happy hump day everyone!

HD


Monday, January 8, 2018

The Knowing

How does that Toby Keith song go?  I wish I didn't know now what I didn't know then?....

I've been reflecting on what a different Day 6 it is today.  Especially as I re-read my old blog posts from 2016.

I "know" so much now.  About myself, about alcohol's effects (physically and mentally), about the struggle to quit....

This past week I've really been thinking good and hard about my earliest alcohol experiences and the poor relationship I have with alcohol, most especially with wine.  Wow, it goes so far back.  I can't pinpoint my first hangover but while I've often given credit to my ex husband for my accelerated need for wine, I realize that how I handle alcohol was messed up before I met him.  I just wasn't using wine.  At that time it was beer and some harder alcohol. 

Perhaps enough hangovers and that's why I switched to wine as I felt better in the morning.  Gradually I got to where I really only wanted white wine.  I'm okay with the taste of beer but I don't crave a buzz that way.  Neither with hard liquor.  Not sure why but it's wine that does it for me.  When desperate I will even drink too much red although I hate the taste for the first two glasses.

Another blogger (apologies as I can't remember who) recently blogged something about "taste", that she doesn't drink for taste or something to that effect.  I went to look for that post again and couldn't find it but it resonated with me.

I've never drunk wine for taste.  Oh, sure, I pretended to.  I remember my ex and I having a good bottle of white on our honeymoon and we raved about how good it tasted.  Okay, yes it was very buttery which is very much my speed so it tasted even better, but it really was more about the mellow state I wanted to get to.  Over the years I realized cheap wine worked fine too.  As long as it was smooth and buttery.

Wouldn't it be nice to see if "wines" really enhance the dining experience.  I'm starting to think it's a bunch of malarky made up by the wine industry.  OR there is a whole other world to wine that I have never explored.  Frankly I don't have enough time to get into that and with my history I think that's one I just have to put aside.  I don't snowboard.  I don't skydive.  I don't surf.  I don't ski very well.  All things I would have liked to have done more of or tried but at 48 I am realistic about what makes sense to take on.  Clearly becoming a sommelier is not in my future!

I don't have a lot of experience with quitting. After my 125 days in 2016 it was as if I proved I can quit.  I can.  Staying quit was the challenge.  Knowing that I am embarking on more time off, knowing that while my face will be less puffy, eventually, knowing that I will lose weight, at some point, knowing that cravings will subside, eventually......is daunting this time around.  But I think it's what I really want this time, deep in my soul, as opposed to just trying to prove I don't have a problem!  That's my "knowing".

Hugs to all the early stagers!

HD

Friday, January 5, 2018

Time to do the gardening.....

Hello all,

I haven't fallen off the face of the earth.  My busy work season this fall was much busier than last year....which is a good thing.

I feel pretty good about life in general.  Working on my diet and fitting back into my work clothes helped a lot with my attitude.

I still wasn't ready to try and give up alcohol again and I wasn't sure what to blog about in that frame of mind.  I still read blogs as often as I can but have found it hard to take time to comment.  I feel that reading the blogs and commenting is an indulgence.... so it drops down the priority chain of things I have to do.  I see it as a rewarding activity and I feel so far behind in things right now that I don't get to it.

Even now I feel like I am shirking something else by taking time to write down my thoughts.   But here goes.....

I have started to view my life as if it were a beautiful garden with zen like water features, warm sun and beautiful plants.  My "life" garden ideally is alcohol free, full of exercise and eating correctly.  It has lots of sleep in it and lots of "getting things done" in it.  Work is fulfilling but doesn't overtake my garden and relationships flourish.

I like to keep my garden this way but weeds can sneak in and infest the beauty of my garden.  With the busy fall, I am seeing more and more weeds taking hold and I haven't taken the time to get rid of them.  It's always easy before the holidays for me to just focus on work and trying to make the season Christmas-y for the family.  House cleaning takes a back burner, full dinner prep goes by the wayside, exercise gets relegated to I don't know where......never can seem to find that one!

Around New Years I walked "outside" and realized "yikes" I had weeds everywhere.  I was drinking too much again, eating horribly (totally blowing off the good habits of Sept/Oct/Nov), my house was a mess, I was behind in household accounting, and I wasn't sleeping well.

I really want to take time to not have any alcohol in my life as a rule.  I still don't know if I have to fully give it up.  I am still questioning whether it's a vice I can manage or not.  I know I can't moderate.  Drinking daily will bring me to where I am right now but I'm not perfect and the pressure of being a perfect non drinker won't keep me sober.....until I decide I really, truly want it.

For anyone else in my garden or starting now in the New Year tackling their weeds, I think we will be okay.  We may or may not fully give up alcohol.  Most of those who have quit seem to come out somewhere (eventually) knowing it was the best decision they ever made.  But those same folks understand that the rest of us must come to our own decisions.

For me, right now, it's enough to be a part of this blogging universe.  If I hadn't found it I don't know where I would be.  My problem right now is that I can drink a bottle of wine no problem.  I rarely drink more but I rarely drink less with nights off becoming more rare.  This is horribly unhealthy and I know it.  BUT at least I'm not acting like a fool nor retching into the toilet any morning.  I'm functioning....but just.  Not enough to keep the weeds out. 

I'm starting in on Sober Mummy's book....the Sober Diaries....in addition to being such a great read and making me belly laugh out loud at times, it's a great reminder about why I don't want to be drinking.  It's a real treat to read it and I'm desperately trying to make time to do so each day, if only for a few minutes.

I'm going to try and incorporate some meditation, actually give yoga a try and really, really try to get some sort of exercise in each day.  And cooking...gotta figure this one out too.

The hubby and I are attempting a dry January.  The mini bar is stocked with AF beer, club soda and sparkling juices.  We are on day 3 today.  We laughed this morning at how much we got done the last two nights.  The challenge will be how to deal with the stresses as they pop up, that we want to tune out.  We'll see how it goes.

I'll always count days but I already feel my garden is starting to look better.  If I get to a point where it feels back to zen and then a weed pops up, I will kill it by consciously weeding it out of the soil. I'm not going to put another chemical in place to kill one weed and let a different type grow!  Each one needs to be tackled.

Wow, this post was really wordy and strange but it made me feel better to write it.  I thought of writing about all the reasons why I drink but it doesn't really matter.  As MICHELLE SAYS in her blog, Just fucking do it.  Stick to it and stop mucking around.    It doesn't really matter why!

Here's to my zen garden getting back into shape and to all of yours doing the same!

HD

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Another quick post

My last post was important to me.....but after reading this before I went to bed....well, not so much.

What a wake up call for that 22 yr old...


LDS mom of 6 killed while driving home from visiting twin baby girls in NICU


https://www.deseretnews.com/article/865690686/LDS-mom-of-6-killed-while-driving-home-from-visiting-twin-baby-girls-in-NICU.html

On Friday, Oct. 6, Katie Evans, a 37-year-old LDS mother of six, was driving home from visiting her premature twin girls in the NICU when her car was struck by another car whose driver is alleged to have been under the influence of alcohol. Evans was ejected from the vehicle and died at the scene, just a mile from her home in Santa Clarita, California.
Her husband, Jacob Evans, explained that their twin girls were not expected to survive but are now nearly 8-weeks-old and thriving.
"That's the irony, right? Is that you have dozens of medical professionals who have spent years training, and they've spent months actually working to save two lives that we thought would be lost, and then we have a life we thought we'd have that was lost just because of two bad decisions: one to go out drinking and the other — worse one — to drive afterward, and obviously it breaks my heart and it's broken six little hearts," Jacob Evans told ABC 7.
According to The Signal, the driver of the other vehicle was a 22-year-old female. Alcohol containers were found in her car. She was charged with a misdemeanor DUI pending future investigation.
YouCaring page to benefit the family has currently raised over $165,000.
“Jacob and family are incredibly grateful for the tremendous outpouring of support and love,” an update to the page on Monday said. “We want to share with you some good news: The twins are doing surprisingly well. Both Sarah and Hannah have doubled their birth weight and doctors are planning for them to come home in four to six weeks.”
Driving drunk is not something I do.  Why I draw the line there I don't know but I have, with very, very few circumstances, that I acknowledge and am ashamed of.  Truly, I was just lucky and I guess so were others.  Probably many of us can relate.  This article just hit me in the solar plexus.  So sad.

What is working....and what is not

I've had a lot of inquiries about my diet and I owe you all a post.  I've been very busy with work which is a good thing but I haven't had a moment to breathe much, let alone post. 

But... every morning I quickly try to read the latest from all those blogs I follow!  I just don't have much time to comment.....but I do read and love all the posts!

So...my diet.....I went 10 days pretty extreme and then went back towards more comfortable (probably actually uncomfortable) habits.... but here is what stuck.

1) I have lost 12 lbs and some good inches....maybe more now, haven't weighed myself in a bit.  Then I kind of stabilized.  I can wear my winter work clothes again which is what was most important to me.   I am cheap and I am the only woman I seem to know who hates to shop!
2) Why am I not losing more? Because I still have wine and I am on an exercise hiatus.  Uggh.  No ugly moments but I still find myself saying I have had too much about every 5th day.  Some days nothing, most days a glass or two and once a week a bottle or more.  Well, that explains why no further weight loss.  And little to no motivation for exercise....I seem to hit this every October so nothing really new for me!
3) But now I don't drink much milk.  I have switched to Almond milk in my tea. Yeehaw!
4) I don't eat bread except for an occasional cheat day every 10 days or so.
5) In general, not much dairy but some cheese.
6) Very little caffeine.  I drink decaf tea with an occasional caffeinated tea bag and today I did have coffee at a meeting.....and I hate coffee.....but it was all they had.  (Along with that damn croissant and egg white... = cheat day)
7) I no longer do fast food.  I have Amy's micro-waveables (gluten free, some dairy free) for lunch when I am too tired to make a fresh quinoa salad. 
8) I no longer snack on chocolate or oreos. Well, alright, maybe every 10 days....but the Oreos ARE going stale!

Okay, so let me summarize:
- reduced greatly the dairy
- really don't eat bread
- dramatically reduced if not eliminated caffeine
- gave up fast food
- pretty much gave up sugar treats

This is HUGE, folks.  Amazing for me.

Now....why the fuck can I do the above and I still want wine?  Oh and now I am back to not being able to have as much wine because I have lost weight and it affects me more.  Sigh.

Clearly I am in avoidance mode.  I guess I needed to do this.  Exercise is the next thing I'll probably add in, until, after all of it, I'll realize that I still have to say goodbye to the wine.  The inevitable is on it's way!

I don't want it from the logical standpoint.  I just need the emotional side to get on board.

I have to be ready to grow up and face true emotions.  I know I have not/may not be there yet.  I've watched others grow so much in sobriety....I think I am actually afraid of what sobriety may bring.

Did I just say that?  YES...I am afraid what sobriety may force me to face.  Ick.

 But, I DO know, I have so much support here, that when I really get serious there will be a serious cheering squad!  I've seen it for Lily, for Tori, for SamKD and many others.  I know I will have it when I need it.

It takes a village but the villager must be ready to put forth some effort.

Thanks for your support over the last year and a half.  It's been awesome!  I'll keep you all posted!

Hugs,
HD

Wednesday, October 4, 2017

What really matters

I don't care anymore whether someone knows about my blog.  In fact, if one of my friends is reading this and realizes who I am, well, then, hello!  It seems we must have something in common, lol.  Life is a journey, full of struggles, this just happens to be my blog about mine.  I'm proud of trying to tackle something that I think a lot of people are in denial over.

Anyway, some of you who I've corresponded with off blog know that I live in Vegas.  My last post mentioned what happened but not that I live here.  It was my way of trying to mention it without giving up my anonymity. 

I don't know anyone directly affected by the shooting.  I know folks who know folks.  I have friends who were at the concert but made it out unscathed.

This morning I was in tears, yet again, reading about a mom who was at the concert with her son.  They had arrived separately and were trying to find each other at the concert.  They gave up and she was just going to connect with her son at the end.  The shooting started and she ran out, then realized her son was in there somewhere.  He didn't make it.

My husband and I never go to the strip unless we have friends or family visiting.  Randomly, we got free tickets to see a show Sunday night that was across the street from the concert, at a hotel across the street from the hotel the shooter was at.  We left my son at home since he was too young.  Strangely, that afternoon, I felt compelled to have him enter emergency phone numbers into his phone.  Probably just because we haven't left him alone for a late evening very often and usually I scribble down our numbers.

Hubs and I drove right by the concert.  Saw tons of folks crossing the intersection where the concert was on one corner and the two hotels on the other.  Saw very happy people in cowboy boots and hats walking across the street.  This was about 7:15 as people were walking over to it.  Cops on all corners directing the pedestrians.

We attended our show and went back through that intersection about 9:45pm.  Saw some folks leaving the concert, heading back to the hotel, but others were just walking over to it.  We figure that the shooting started about the time we pulled into our driveway.  We didn't know about it until early the next morning when our phones started exploding with texts from family and friends.

A near miss like that makes you think.  What if we had stopped for a drink like we probably would have done in the past?  On the one hand we might have been on hand to help.  On the other hand we might have gotten stuck for hours in that area as police secured the area and my son would have possibly looked at his phone to see why we were late getting home and freaked out.   Cell phone coverage got clogged so we probably couldn't have even called him to let him know we were okay.

I guess it just made me think and reflect on a lot of things the past few days.  Sorry if this post sounds disjointed. 

I'm proud of my journey with alcohol.  I have nothing to be ashamed of.  I hesitate sometimes to post because most of my well-wishers are sober.  I'm not sure I'm ready to go the 100% route and so I feel bad about discussing my journey.  This is my fault.  When I first started the blog, I commented on the folks struggling and the ones who were long time sober, so those folks are the only ones who know about my blog.  I don't put keywords of moderation etc in my blog so people usually only find my blog by seeing I commented somewhere else. That's how I ended up not sober in the sober universe. 

Maybe there are more people out there reading my blog who struggle and just don't comment.  That's cool.  I like to lurk through blogs too.  Sometimes I feel silly commenting on a long time sober blog when I am not.

I still have a ways to go with alcohol but I love that I have more nights now than not where I don't drink or I don't drink too much.  I'm still vulnerable to a bottle of white wine but I am doing better about planning for that if it happens.

This week made me reflect that while my journey is important to me, in the overall scheme of things, it is just one piece of the pie and so many other things matter more. I'll write about the diet later but I've lost 10 lbs and feel healthier than I have in a long time.  I like remembering giving my son a hug before bed.

My heart hurts for my city.   We are a very big, small town, community.  I always say there are only 2 or 3 degrees of separation here.  Everyone knows everyone - part of the reason I keep this blog quiet.  The randomness of it is so scary to our children.   There may be people reading this blog who live in distant cities but were affected because of visitors they know who traveled here.  My heart aches for you too.

Hugs,
HD