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Thursday, October 15, 2020

No more waiting for rock bottom!

I am so over myself.  Watching myself wake up every day and saying I'm done drinking for ever and then asking hubs to get wine on the way home, then not sleeping great, feeling sluggish, blowing off exercise.....this is insane.  So cliche but still this is the definition of insanity, doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.

I remember reading Waiting for Godot as a child.  I don't know why it stuck with me as I thought it was truly boring.  But that's me, waiting for something.....

It's as if I'm waiting for rock bottom.  Whether that is an alcoholic episode or embarrassment, a health scare or what, I'm not sure.

I listen to the Bubble hour now and always feel a little jealous, in a strange way, to those who hit a real (as I would define it) rock bottom.  They are so motivated to quit drinking!!

I rarely ever drink more than a bottle of wine a night and how I react depends upon whether I start at 7pm and mainline it into my system or if I drink over 4 or 5 hours.  I'm still drinking the same but the results are vary differing.  I manage to string together 2 days here and there without drinking and then that "voice" hits around 5pm....

For years and years and years this has happened.  (As evidenced by 4 effing years of blogging!!) I wake up in the morning feeling sluggish and say "I'm done".  Then  around 4pm the siren starts calling.  If I have other obligations, I'm okay.  If the hubs isn't home, I enjoy my time doing other stuff.  If I'm out socially, I can have one drink.   

But there is this magical huge dinner plans, especially if son is busy and won't be dining with us, me being exhausted from work and ready to shut down after 5pm, hubs coming home from work and we have an hour or two to sit on our sofas with our fur babies and decompress.  DISASTER.  What I mean by that is that there is no way in hell I will stop at one glass.  I'll finish the bottle, we'll have a relaxing evening chatting, maybe catch up on some tv, I'll clean up the kitchen and we go to bed.  Sometimes I remember it all, but sometimes I don't.

And that's it.  I think I've "passed" out maybe a few times in my life.  I am rarely ever hungover, more just tired from not sleeping well as the wine metabolized in my system.  I've never let my family down in any way from drinking other than they have noticed some evenings where I appear to be buzzed.  I've always made my son lunch and taken him to school.

It never gets worse or motivating enough to quit.  But I want to. Very, very badly.

I know I am that person that needs accountability to quit.  I think that's why I'm subconsciously waiting for a rock bottom moment but I think I need to realize that the other parts of my personality may never let that happen.  I told the hubs this morning DO NOT BRING WINE home tonight if I text around 5pm.  He agreed.  He said we'll dry out for awhile and just not drink.

Hello clueless!  I said "you know I'm an alcoholic, right?"  It's not as simple as just deciding not to drink.  I think it might be for him actually......but time will tell.  When I said let's do 30 days awhile ago, he did it with me.  Didn't seem to have any issue.  But if I say "oh let's have wine", he's out the door lickety split.  I think I am just further along in identifying an issue than he might be.  And he outweighs me so alcohol may not affect him as much nor be quite as unhealthy.

He really thinks we are "heavy drinkers" but not "problem drinkers".  I think they are one and the same.

Regardless, I need a support system.   I need outside accountability but I'm not ready to get family and close friends involved.   I've tried this blog and maybe I just need to move it to wordpress because I  know folks have a hard time commenting.  If you can let people know to check out my blog to help me, that would be great.

I know AA is an option but right now I'm not open to it.  I hate meetings and group scenarios.  I hate zoom stuff.  This blog may still be an okay tool as is, but we'll see.  I still crave anonymity through my struggles and I'm never sure where I can really comfortably hang out online.  I also don't want to embark on something that will be a huge time sink.  Finding time to write this today was a struggle.

Right now my tools are books, blogs and the Bubble Hour.  Are there any other good podcasts?  I've listened to the TED talk on gray area drinking which was great and so me.  I need to find other stories of people who quit when they got to my stage, before they hit a "rock bottom".  If you have any suggestions for books like that, let me know.  I've read a lot but finding other posts or books like Sober Mummy's and Mrs D's stuff resonates the most with me.  I think I've read most of the popular no avail.  You'd think one of them would motivate me.  Or maybe I am motivated, I just have no commitment.....not sure.

I think you know what I mean.  We all have our rock bottoms and maybe this IS mine!!

I'm really going to try and get through tonight, and the next and the next....

Tally ho!


Saturday, May 9, 2020


  1. sadness or displeasure caused by the nonfulfillment of one's hopes or expectations.
    "to her disappointment, there was no chance to talk privately with Luke"
I had wine again last night but I have a moment of clarity right now...…, so clear.....for the first time ever.

You see, I've spent hours deliberating why I drink.  I even wrote a whole draft post about my personality and my deep ingrained fears as to how that may cause me to turn to escapism.  But it didn't feel right.  I think there is some truth that my deep seated fear of catastrophe and fear of emotional pain somehow contributes to my drinking but I don't think that is the biggest issue.

I keep having a persistent feeling of grief and yet not feeling I have anything to grieve.  This has been unsettling as I couldn't put my finger on it.  I'm not really sad so why do I feel sadness?  I have nothing to be sad about.  I have no right to grieve.

When I woke up this morning and said "damn it, why do I continually disappoint myself?", it was like a lightning bolt went through me.

I am grieving my life's disappointments deep down inside of me.  Outwardly I tell myself I feel happy and that I have a great life.  I am masking all those feelings about how I have disappointed myself.  When those feelings bubble up and I can't push them away, I drink and tune them out.

To me this explains why I'm not sticking with sobriety.  When I first quit drinking I am proud of myself.  I have all sorts of goals for myself.  Then, as happens, I disappoint myself in some way.  Maybe I don't exercise like I say I'm going to in sobriety.  Or maybe I don't eat right.  Or maybe just feelings about my life bubble up.  It gets to be too much and I drink again.  Then I have disappointed myself again so might as well keep drinking.  It's easier to drink than be disappointed.

I spent time this morning cataloging where I have disappointed myself in my life.  It's a pretty long list, lol.  I made a graph to show what I am feeling.  I started out in life really happy with myself.  I went off to College on top of the world!  As I've disappointed myself over the years I've escaped with drinking.  Drinking went from being a social thing with occasional binges to a coping mechanism for everyday life.

The graph isn't that clear but you get my point.  The blue line going from left to right is increasing disappointments in myself leading to decreased happiness with myself.  When I was younger there was always hope to be better.  Once I hit 40 I lost hope for much change.  The yellow line illustrates an increase in my drinking.  When those two lines crossed I realized I had a problem.  Somewhere around age 40.

We all disappoint ourselves but I think some are better at acknowledging it.  Some folks acknowledge it and are depressed or anxious.  I've never allowed myself to feel those feelings.  I think that's where shame comes in and maybe it is time to let myself feel some shame for my decisions and do some work on that.  I never thought I had shame but I think there may be heaps of it buried deep inside of me.

I did some online searching and I think one article spoke to me more than others.  The next time I want to drink I'm going to do some work:

1) Notice the signals:  When I want to drink I'm going to ask myself how I'm feeling.  Are there things I haven't accomplished, am I feeling bad about myself in some way that I want to tune out?

2) Give myself some space:  Allow those feelings to be there.  Don't push them away

3) Give myself compassion:  Tell myself I'm still worthy, give myself a virtual hug.  Go find something to reward myself (that is not alcohol) for acknowledging the feeling.

4) See the greatness of the present:  Change my story.  Sure I may have failed at X but I have succeeded in so many other ways.  Remind myself of what has gone well and feel gratefulness.

5) Work with curiosity:  Tomorrow will be exciting, especially if feeling refreshed.  It's okay to feel tired and out of control of some things.  Sleep will be a good reset.  Get good sleep.

This all seems pretty trite in some ways.  I've always known that drinking brings shame.  I know that during cravings I should distract myself.  I know to "sit" with my feelings but to sit with them I have to know what I am feeling.  That was always the missing link for me.....what on earth am I really feeling?

All I can say is that for a long time, in the evenings, I have experienced a tired grieving feeling.  An end of day tiredness, yes, we all have that, but this is more.  It's like I have experienced a loss that I need to grieve.  I want to reach for wine to sooth my pain.  I think I am grieving the loss of myself, of my goals and who I thought I was.  I didn't become who I thought I would.  Didn't lead the exact life I wanted.

This is all probably normal and we all process this differently.  But maybe this explains a lot of gray area drinkers and why it's in our 40s, 50s and 60s that a lot of us begin to deal with drinking escalation.

Finally really sitting here and thinking about this, acknowledging all this about myself, has been like opening the floodgates.  I HAVE really disappointed myself and I am already 50.   People and events have disappointed me but that I can deal with.  In fact, in times of challenge, I drink less.  I am invigorated.  It's the sitting with myself that I try to drown out.  I think this explains the at home drinking and why I never drink too much out with or amongst others.  In social situations I am distracted from the grief.  I feel welcome and alive.  But by myself...…..or just sitting with the hubs in the evening...….it's a different story.

Enough on this for now.  I'm going to keep thinking along these lines though.  I know what I must do.  I need to think about my disappointments, feel the pain, forgive myself for each one, end each thought with something I'm grateful for, and move on.  Grieving is a process and it's like I've been stuck in a phase of it.

I also still have to "not pick up that glass of wine", just don't start again.  That's my plan!

Happy Saturday,

Saturday, May 2, 2020


I've always had a hard time with sticking with anything in the "forever" sense.  No matter what I decide to do, I'll do it pretty easily and for awhile.....and then....I'll come and go back to whatever it was.  Especially if it's something just for me.  Piano, learning Spanish, cooking, exercise, to name a few.  "Not drinking" is in that same category for me.  Always has been.  While I would love to say I'm never drinking again, that won't fly.  I know it.

I agree with Annie Grace in that this is a process whereby once you decide you don't want to drink, you have victory.  I also know that I'll never get there unless I have extended sobriety, otherwise it will be a continued battle, so that's still my goal.

This week was good brain food though, for me.  I drank Monday night and slept great.  So I had wine Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday night.  Uggh.   It was just so obvious this time.  With just one sip I'm back on the train.

Fortunately I do have an attitude of this isn't what I want.  It's not even that I think I might be able to handle it.  I just took the drug to help ease pain and voila, I was back at it.  I could feel the train leaving the station again so I hopped off, sent it on it's way and it was lovely to wake up early today feeling pretty good.

I'm still going to track days as I think it's helpful in one sense but if I screw up, I'm going to view it as reinforcement and get back at it.  I don't know if forever will work for me but longer and longer periods of not drinking is certainly doable.  That and recognizing that one ride on the train doesn't mean I have to ride it all the time!

Going to try and deal with anxiety over health issues this week......without wine!!!

Happy Saturday,

Tuesday, April 28, 2020

They call it a drug for a reason

What would have been Day 18, and a story to tell about Age 18, fell apart.  Maybe I just couldn't face discussing what happened in my 18th year.  Guess I get to save that for 18 days from now.

I mentioned before that I have been having leg pains.  It started at the end of last summer and all through the fall I used a bolster under my legs at night and resorted to having to sleep on my back to manage the pain.  I am not a back sleeper so this resulted in me having very disrupted sleep for months.

In November I went back to drinking wine every night, gave up on this quitting thing, and gradually realized my legs weren't hurting as much while sleeping but I was still really stiff upon waking or getting up after sitting for very long.  I was wondering if my leg pain, while not as bad as it had been, was caused by alcohol.  I think my body is in state of inflammation of some sort that I need to calm down.

I, optimistically, assumed that not drinking would help this.  But, since I stopped drinking on April 10th, my leg pain got worse and worse.  I don't have an answer for this but chronic pain and I don't do well together.  I am also loathe to take ibuprofen or other anti inflammatory medication.  Why?  I have no idea.

Last night after 2 nights of really poor sleep and a lot of pain, I just hit the end of my rope.  I had a choice, dope up on ibuprofen before bed or see if wine helped.  I had a craving so why not?  Uggh.  I guess it was a good experiment.  I had that bottle of white wine and other than a little heartburn, I slept the best in days.  Woke up and my legs don't hurt although still stiff.

What does this tell me?  Umm, duh, alcohol is a drug, the oldest in the book.  There is a reason why people took swigs of whiskey before getting bullets taken out in the old days.   Today is interesting in that I realize I took a drug.  It did help but it reinforces that it's not how I want to manage my pain.

So I'll get back to not drinking and spend some time thinking about inflammation and looking at foods in that regard and then, if I really need sleep, I'll dope up on ibuprofen and choose that as my drug instead of alcohol.  I've tried turmeric, fyi, and it really hasn't helped much but I'm going to keep taking it.

Has anyone else reading this triumphed over inflammation?  Maybe this is all just peri menopause/menopause symptoms that will resolve themselves like hot flashes.

Anyway, I told my hubs last night I wanted wine to see if it helped and it did.  Done.  Experiment concluded.  Yes, it has short term benefits but I know what it's like drinking day in and day out and I think I'll take the pain instead and at least have a clear head.  I still think alcohol has contributed to overall inflammation, I just broke after 2 and a half weeks of it getting worse not better.  This time I'll be prepared.

We're having a heat wave here and the pool is already up to temperature for swimming.  I'm going to use that as my exercise of choice this week and see if that helps as well.

Day 1 with 17 days under my belt.


Saturday, April 25, 2020

One bottle, one blip

And here I thought I wouldn't blog much.  I suppose if we weren't in quarantine I might not have the time, but it does feel good to get thoughts out of my head.

Last night I hit a speedbump but made it to the other side.  We decided to go pick up dinner and order online to get curbside delivery.  I think other than a pizza delivery and one fast food run for my son we haven't had outside food since this seclusion started.  I just really wanted good fish and there is a great restaurant where we can get it and I can get my son really good chicken strips!

So I go to place the order online and I see that sodas are included...….but you can also order a bottle of wine.  The stars aligned because the conversation went like this, of course at my instigation.

Me:  Oh we should get a glass of wine with dinner  (how does this happen, just blurts out?)
Hubs:  I can just stop at grocery store
(remember my guilt over contracting Covid if we were to make a wine run...…)
Me:  Nah, never mind, I don't want to stop
Me:  Oh look we can buy a bottle of wine, too, with our food, they aren't selling by the glass
Hubs:  That's way too expensive, we can just stop (love that he is frugal to a fault sometimes)
Me:  Nah, never mind, it's okay we are good with water/soda
Me:  Wow, we can get Kendall Jackson for $12.99.  That's not that much more than grocery store.
Hubs:  What kind of wine?
Me:  Chardonnay
Hubs: I don't really want Chardonnay, I can just run into grocery store on the way there and get red and white, let's go now.
Me:  (Oh hell no, now it hits me where this is going to end up)  Nah, never mind, we are fine with water/soda.  I'm just ordering now, it will take 20 minutes so we don't have to leave right now, we can leave in 10.

I noted that I think he glared at me but kept his mouth shut and went and grabbed a shot of whiskey.  Poor man, I probably had him salivating for wine too.

So I didn't have wine because of him.  I came so close to ordering that bottle.  One bottle would have just been one blip, right?  Arrgh.

I'm glad I made it through but I need to do more work, clearly, on how to get through those moments.  Well, we don't have wine in the house and we won't order out again until next Friday.

I've just got to go at this long enough to get to the other side and I hear that's at least 6 months!

Day 16 and Age 16:  I was giving a lot of thought to high school yesterday and this morning.  I had that one night out where I was clearly buzzing at age 14 but I can't think of anytime age 15 - 17 where I had too much.  I had sips here and there and even went to a prom where people were drinking heavily but I didn't.  I don't think I even had my first real hangover until age 18.

Not long after that Age 14 event, I became passionate about what I wanted to do in life.  I knew who I was going to be! (ha, that changed but I was definitely in to my plans back then).  I started flying lessons at 15, solo'ed at 16 and got my pilots license at 17.  Was focused on getting good grades and getting into college of my choice.  Probably just no room for drinking.

I think there is something to this.....Having no mental time for drinking is important.  Right now I'm filling my time with new and different things which is helping but I still don't know what I want to be doing with my life.  My career is fine but making that my main focus isn't my preference.  I love what I do but I don't need to be the best known in my field or known as a guru.  I am happy with the only marketing I do is referrals, word of mouth. I love people coming to me from happy clients where there is a real relationship.

The hubs has always had side hobbies to his work.  I am really envious.  He is passionate about these horses.  Why I am holding back from getting involved in the same, I don't know.  Maybe a fear of failure, feeling that even though I was the one with the riding background, he is light years ahead of where I was, now.  Need to give this some thought.

Happy Saturday

Friday, April 24, 2020

I abuse alcohol because........

….early on I used it in a manner that was not how society portrays it should be used.  I used it for buzz, for making me feel care free, to ease anxiety or ill at ease feelings, or to zone out.  I have never really used alcohol as a complement or pairing to food and really couldn't give a shit what flavors, what hints of ingredients are in it once I'm beyond about 1/2 glass.  I drink to drink not to taste.  Bottom line.

I've spent a lot of mental energy in the last two weeks trying to figure out "why" I drink.  As if there is a magical reason that if i fix it, I won't need to drink.  I have started with present day and I keep going back and back and back.

- Do I abuse alcohol as a means of coping with my life now because I am not where I thought I would be in life or whom I would be with?  Possibly but even if that's the case I abused alcohol before I go further back....

- Did I abuse alcohol as a means of coping with my divorce? Umm....sure, but I abused alcohol before that.….so I go further back....

- Did I abuse alcohol as a means of dealing with parenting?  Maybe......from time to time....but I abused alcohol before I go further back

- Did I abuse alcohol because my first husband and I got bored with each other and it was a way of tuning out our life dissatisfaction?  Possibly.....but I abused alcohol before I go further back

- Did I abuse alcohol because I regretted getting married so young and maybe I rushed into things?  Could be......but I abused alcohol before that...….so I go further back

- Did I abuse alcohol while my ex and I were dating because I was struggling to figure out what I wanted in life and if he was the right guy?  Not sure, I did love him....but it doesn't matter....I abused alcohol before I go further back

- Did I abuse alcohol because of the college environment and it felt so adult to drink? For sure....but I abused alcohol before I go further back

- Did I abuse alcohol in college because I was uncomfortable around men and the dating scene and I needed to be very loose to be social?  Yes, that certainly seems the start of things.....but I abused alcohol before I go further back

- Did I abuse alcohol in high school?  Sort of.

- Did I have an abused or traumatic childhood?  Nope.  Was loved, nurtured and supported by all.

I can come up with a lot of reasons why I drink and I do think it's personality related in some way.  I've never thought of myself as someone who has anxiety or depression and I've certainly never had panic attacks.  I don't really overly worry or obsess about things, I just move on.  But in re-reading the above, I get the feeling that I have had anxiety about things in life and all the way back to high school I began using alcohol to redirect away from that.  A little feeling of anxiety?  Drink it away.  Interesting.

These past few nights around 4:30pm I have been chuckling with a grimace.  I want wine really bad.  I want to sit and escape.  From what?  I'm not really sure, haven't dove into that too deep yet.  But I get that flutter in my body, that agitation, that need.  At 15 days, I wonder if that is the emotional addiction to alcohol lingering or is it something else?  So I am trying to spend time evaluating my life's issues in the morning, during a better period of clarity not being compounded by cravings.

Every day I'm thinking of an event at the age that matches my day of non drinking.  It's showing me that I have always exhibited a disorder when using alcohol.

Age 14:  Pinch-hitted as a date for a winter formal.  Limo drove us around afterward, I got buzzed on champagne.  Drank to fit in and I was nervous because I didn't know everyone.

Age 15: Don't really remember much other than going to a popular kids party, lots of drinking there.  I didn't fit in and didn't want to drink so my friend and I left.  But we would always try to have champagne on Christmas and New Years.  Tried to swipe glasses of wine when we could because it felt adult.  Probably just lack of opportunity and I had a lot of stuff going on in my life elsewise to keep me busy.

Will be interesting (well, for me, lol, probably not for anyone reading this) to see what the next 35 days of memories hold for me.

My plan is to recollect a bit until then and dive into some situations that might explain why I feel the need for alcohol to cope with my life.  I know using alcohol has held me back from what I can accomplish.  I need to find myself... as cliché as that sounds.

Happy Friday,

Wednesday, April 22, 2020

The blahs

Tonight I'm feeling melancholy and really in the mood for wine.  Why?  Just to tune out the sadness.

I'm hungry, moody, tired and thirsty.  Duh, no wonder....

But I won't drink.  It's already almost 5:30pm, I'm about to make dinner and we don't have wine in the house.  Quarantine has helped me I guess.  I couldn't stand myself if I brought home Coronavirus just because of a wine run.....just can't do it.

I really wouldn't even know if that was where it came from.  But even the other parade of horribles goes through my head...….why it didn't before, I don't know.....but right now I can't stomach the thought of anything happening to me or my family because I asked for wine.

Well, not exactly me being "disinterested" in wine like I have been, but I'm not drinking tonight so there is that.

They cancelled school for the rest of the year and I'm just sad for my son, for me not watching him in  sports or other school events, no prom etc, and just missing the overall school camaraderie.  Feeling sorry for myself a bit although I can't really complain.  I feel horrible for all the seniors and their parents and mine is still only a junior.

So I'm just irritated tonight, sad, a bit anxious and just downright grouchy.  I want wine to tune that out.  But I know that once I get up from the computer, go have a mocktail, make dinner, this will pass.

Cravings really only involve a short window of time.  I just need to shut the blinds while the sun goes down and then I'll be fine.

Hugs to all like me and to others who want to quit.  It's hard to admit I can't moderate and that any time I say "yes" to wine almost always means (at least for sure at home) "yes" to a bottle and all that comes with it.  I'm just tired of it all.

Day 13 almost done.


Monday, April 20, 2020

Busy Brain

As always, in the early days of quitting drinking, my mind is whirring.  One minute I think of one aspect of my historical drinking habits, then whammo, another thought hops on the hamster wheel.

This morning I listened to the Bubble Hour, to Barry's story from 2 weeks ago.  Chilled me to the bone.  As host Jean said, we are all really just one breath away from what happened to her and her son.

While I was careful to never drink too much and drive my son anywhere, just the thought of the number of times that I left him up, playing with his friends on his computer, as I grayed out and went to bed.  What if something had happened to him and I wasn't able to deal with it?   What about those times I DID drive after having some wine.  I felt okay but what if I really wasn't, got pulled over and my child had gotten taken away from me?  So scary.

Tonight I had a craving around 4:30 but I was prepared for it.  I just sat through it.  I knew, just knew, if I gave it an hour, I would be okay......and I was.

The hubs left to mail something around then and he asked if I needed him to get anything while he was out.  I think that was code for "if you ask me to go get wine, I will".  I resisted and said that I was good.  I went back to working on my computer until he got home.  My wicked witch was screaming....just ask him to get a bottle of wine!  I didn't really want it, I just had that anxious tension feeling I get at the end of the day.  I wanted to wake up fresh in the morning tomorrow more than I wanted that wine.   Fortunately he has a competitive streak.  He wants to drink wine but won't admit it and yet probably hopes I ask for it!  So if don't, he doesn't drink much either.

Around 5:30 hubs and I sat down and chatted and I had a mocktail.  Then I took my son out to get dinner - first fast food he has had in a month, poor thing - and then I poured another mocktail when I got back while hubs was working again.  Hubs and I had dinner while watching tv and I had another mocktail.  I'm about to explode with sparkling water, lol, but I didn't drink!

It's been a long time since I pushed through cravings.  Over the past year I either didn't drink because it was easy or caved because that seemed easier.  I'm trying to tell myself just get to 7pm and if you still really want to drink you can.  By then I find I don't want to.  It's too late for me.

Day 11 done.


Sunday, April 19, 2020

Craving hit

Well, finally, a true craving hit yesterday.

We had had a stressful day dealing with our pup who has an injured leg and by 4:30pm I just wanted wine really badly.  I knew that if I opened my mouth and said let's have one bottle tonight, the hubs would have shot out the door like a rocket to the store.

I really can't live with myself if one of us got Covid because we made a wine run!  It's bad enough having to deal with the grocery store for normal groceries.

Before I started this time around, I did do some new things.   First, I finally read Annie Grace's "This Naked Mind."  I don't know why I avoided it all this time but, while I did read and do her 30 day Alcohol Experiment last spring, I had just never read the full book.  It really is full of good stuff.

I also started and began reading The Unexpected Joy of Being Sober by Catherine Gray.  I don't really resonate with her drinking history since her experience was much more one of social and work drinking and mine has been alone at home but her diary of what happened is really only a small first portion of the book.  She has some really good advice and tools that do apply to me and I'm glad I found them.

The one that sticks with me the most is that thoughts can't make you drink, you physically have to take action to make that happen....or something like that.  I've been mulling that over and strangely that happened to have helped yesterday.  She also said to really get a picture in your head, like Voldemort or as others have said, Wolfie, etc., of your drinking voice.

I have this strong memory of watching the Wizard of Oz as a kid and hating, just hating, the ugly Wicked Witch of the West and yet feeling so peaceful whenever Glinda, the Good Witch of the North arrived in her bubble.  Billie Burke's vibrato voice always made me feel so calm as she talked to all the munchkins.  So this is what I latched on to.  My alcoholic voice is the wicked witch and the peaceful, non drinking side of me is the good witch.

Yesterday when that craving hit it was the first time I sat back and pictured the war in my head as two personas.  I paused, froze in one spot in my kitchen.  I was mentally watching the witches duke it out and felt myself gravitating toward the good witch.  She was where calm was, where the battle would end the way I wanted it to.  I also kept my mouth shut and did not send hubs out to the store.  My thoughts could not hurt me!!

I pivoted and went for that delicious cheese in my fridge!  Instead of asking for a store run, I asked the hubs to join me outside.  I made my mocktail and enjoyed the evening.  I made another and sat in the jacuzzi.  Sun strangely does help.  We went inside and made dinner and watched Magnum PI after dinner, lol.

Day was done.

The other tool I have been utilizing is the Bubble Hour podcasts.  Again, don't know why in 4 years I never tuned in but finding that I can go and pick and choose from past episodes suddenly opened up a whole new world for me.  It was fun listening to Clare Pooley's talk and others.  Some are from bloggers whose blogs I remember following and others are new to me.  I'm looking forward to listening to more.

Day 10 today.  Yay.


Saturday, April 18, 2020

Where'd ya go time?

I can't believe 9 days has passed by so quickly.  Normally, when I try to quit drinking, time slows down.  In fact I rejoice in that.  When I'm drinking it feels like time speeds by, day after day, with no self-improvement and just day upon day adding to my frustrations with myself as I tell myself I won't drink that night and then I do.  Even if I don't get drunk or don't drink the whole bottle, I'm still usually continually frustrated with my inability to stop at one glass.

So when I stop, time drags for a bit.  I sort of like the feeling of dealing with cravings, the days dragging from 1 to 2 to 3 as I get through it.

But this time is bizarre.  It's like time sped up.  I can't believe that as of tonight I won't have had a drink in 9 full days.  I, strangely enough, am disinterested in drinking right now.   Maybe my focus on my health is keeping cravings at bay.  In the evenings I feel a little irritated, that it would be nice to slip away on the soothing waves of wine, but it's just not for me.  I know that feeling is fleeting.

I've spent every evening either sitting in the jacuzzi with the hubs before dinner or sitting outside and enjoying the evening, sans wine.  If I think back on it, it feels like I had wine.  Odd.  I'm just as relaxed from it even if I am a little tense in the beginning of those sessions.  But I pour my mocktail and magic happens.  I become as relaxed as I did with wine but I don't forget to make dinner!

(Mocktail:  1/3 Pellegrino water, 1/3 flavored sparkling water or flavored iced tea, 1/3 club soda, splash of lime juice and splash of a shrub.  Just bitter enough to feel alcoholic.)

Last night I said I would give my right arm for a bottle of wine.  And laughed.  I really didn't mean it.  I just wanted it for that initial tension.  But once I started drinking my mocktail, the tension slipped away.  The act of just enjoying the evening, watching the hummingbirds, talking with the hubs, still eased away stress and anxiety.  When I went in to deal with dinner I felt as relaxed as I did after wine but I wasn't buzzed nor trying to figure out how to pour more.  Hmmm.....

I know I need to be careful and protective of not drinking.  We discovered a local cheese store that normally sells to businesses.  We can go pick up cheese and charcuterie and bring it home.  Holy cow is that cheese awesome.  I have been cheese deprived.  This is my new thing.  And the salami and other meats, wow.  Who knew?  So of course hubs sends me an invite for a virtual cheese evening.  We can go pick up a package and sit at home and they will teach about cheese pairings with charcuterie to build a tasting board.  But then I saw it.  One bottle of wine is included with the package and you can ADD on up to two more.  I think we'll skip this and just keep buying the stuff and enjoying the taste.  Probably as fattening as chocolate but feels healthier!  Oh well.

After dinner we watched Rocketman about Elton John.  Wow, that was timely.  Scary.  The fact that he presented this biopic about himself and presented himself that way was eye opening.  Nobody did that after he passed, he is alive and shared that.  My one vice is alcohol.  I admit to never having smoked a cigarette, never smoked weed or had any THC, never tried any other recreational drugs, and I'm not a gambler nor a sex addict.  His world was so messed up before he became sober and he's been sober 28 years as of that movie.

I suppose the fact that he made it to 73 and was 45 when he sobered up gives me hope.  I don't think I've done THAT much damage to my body.  Hopefully.

The hubs still has alcohol but it's interesting.  He just doesn't have too much unless I let loose too.  I see him taking a shot of whiskey and putting it into his cola.  He had some red wine he drank one night and the bottle lasted two days.  Yesterday he seemed so alert and happy I asked if he had snuck in a vape or somesuch.  Nope.  He had just ridden his horse again that morning and headed out this morning to do the same.  I really need to get back into riding!

I feel optimistic today.  I've done a lot of thinking this past week about my drinking.  Written a few blog posts I haven't published that I might finalize and do so later.  I feel like a creature who has scuttled into a corner to lick it's wounds.  I got caught up on work and started house cleaning again.  I'm going to take this weekend and do things I want to around the house.  I hope to figure out my exercise routine next week but for right now I'm cutting myself a break.  It's enough not to drink and I wasn't exercising very well while drinking lately anyway.

Happy weekend,

Thursday, April 16, 2020

Habit Wine


You'd think I would have known about this.  Apparently it's been around since about 2009.  What a sad name!

I picked Habit Done because it was a shortened name of this blog and I am not very creative.  Sounds kind of boring now......Sparklingly Sober sounds more fun.  (Okay, that's funny, just googled that to see if it's a blog and it's actually a non alcoholic wine maker.  Looks like a Scottish brand so not sure I can get here - anybody tried it?)

But I had never even tried this Habit wine.  Wow, I don't think I could even raise it to my lips after blogging under this name for 4 years!

Maybe there should be a non-alcholic version called Habit Done......just saying.

Day 7

Wednesday, April 15, 2020

Ending the escapism

Day 6 and I'm still blogging.  Oh well, I'll just go with it......

I just read Jim's blog and he gave some really great reasons to quit drinking now during quarantine.

I already said that I think my health concerns are what pushed me back into sobriety this time.  After giving it some thought, I realize that I have two other reasons for quitting.

1) I don't want to waste this really special and bizarre time of my life, this quarantine thing.  I just cannot stomach emerging out the other side the same as or even worse than I have been.  I have stopped exercising, was relaxing with wine every night and too much of it, eating poorly and not working on anything to further my mind.

I need to come out of this strange time in our lives with some self improvement.  With the economy crashing down hard, my drinking seems like the biggest loser habit ever.

2) My other reason to quit now is also about not wasting quarantine but in a different way.  While I don't drink too much socially, it's always something social that triggers me to start drinking again and then I start drinking at home again.  Maybe a friend or family member comes over and I have a glass of wine,  maybe I go out to dinner and have a glass of wine, go to a movie and have a glass of wine...…..and then it's like the gates have opened and I'm out running in circles again, drinking at home.  So I hope to gain some time behind me before I experience a social trigger.  I have this protected time to gain some brain muscle memory of not drinking.

I keep re-reading my old blog posts from 2016 and I am so disgusted with myself.  For the rest of the day I'm going to focus on other things that have been really positive over the past years.  In fact, darnit, identifying my struggle with alcohol and at least working on it is huge in my book. Pat on back!

I used alcohol to cope during my first 50 years.  Amazing how unnecessary that probably was.  But still grateful for my life and the times I have had.  Those of you who have read my blog know that my favorite singer is the lead Parrothead and one of his songs sings of life, "some of it's magic, some of it's tragic, but I had a good life all of the way."  Even Jimmy Buffett said he doesn't drink margaritas anymore, doesn't do weed and barely eats carbs.  Granted he has made millions on promoting escapism but good for him.  Maybe we all just get to a point where escapism with alcohol doesn't seem as necessary anymore.  I can still escape to the island life in his songs though!

Here's to making it even better these next 50 years!  (no, it's not my birthday but given that I'm halfway through this year it's time to turn the ship around!)


Tuesday, April 14, 2020


My first day 5 in my blog from 2016. Says it all and nothing has changed, sadly. I still could have written this today. If I was this smart the first time it slays me that this is 4 years later.....oh well

Moderation? Ha!

Day 5

I read somewhere that most alcohol has left your body in 3 days.  As I go into the evening of the 5th day I will go with that assumption for now.  I know there are conflicting opinions on this.  However, I will presume I have a clear head for reflection.  (Possibly why last night was the first night I had trouble falling asleep....some withdrawal may be kicking in!)

I think I need to separate out the "why I drink" and "why I drink TOO much".  I really feel they are separate issues.

The "why I drink" can correlate to "why I would love to have a donut", "why I would love to eat chocolate or cookies", heck, even "why I want to sit down with a good book and blow off life."  I think it's quite simply about those endorphins and serotonins being produced.  I'm probably using these words somewhat "off" but at least I understand what I mean!

Bottom line, wine makes me THINK I feel good.  So does chocolate, donuts, cookies, chips, and some activities like reading a book and, believe it or not, any paperwork requiring reconciling numbers, budgeting, etc.  Seriously, I will blow off exercise, cleaning, cooking and laundry to balance my checkbook.  I should have been an Accountant.  This is where some of you say "ok, I'm not like this gal".  No worries.  I get it.  But this is me.

In reflection, however, I have always had a tendency to binge a little.  I can remember eating an entire box of  "thin mint cookies" after school...(hmm...blamed it on my brother...they are good for that).

I can remember sneaking a tube of frosting in the grocery cart from the bakery aisle and grabbing it out of the cart at home only to slink off to my room and squirt it all down my throat.  Yikes.  Red tongue alerted Mom to that one.

I can remember Mom having to stop using children's vitamins because I started snacking on them - they tasted yummy - oops.

Now, as I got older, I got control of these things.  I can have a chocolate bar in the house and eat one square as a treat.  I no longer socialize with other sweets like donuts or frosting tubes, but I certainly love that corner piece of a sheet cake at the office party!  I get my chores done and manage to keep order in my life.  (I think I have gone off sweets because of the wine as a substitute so it will be interesting to see what sweet cravings crop back up!)

WHY do I not over indulge in things that make me feel good?  Because I have control.  These temptations which cause those neurotransmitters to activate are then tempered by my willpower.

BUT ALCOHOL KILLS WILLPOWER because it is a drug.  Duh! I am powerless if I drink a drug that does this to me.  Why do I expect different?  If someone gave me truth serum would I be surprised that I couldn't hold anything in?  No!

That is the difference I have decided.  It's my theory anyway.  For me, wine is just about feeling relaxed, feeling good....and I'm not truly stressed in the first place.  It's not a social thing which is why I think I do it mostly at home.

I think some people can overcome, battle and win against the effects of this drug.  (The same folks probably never snuck frosting into their bedroom...)...but I cannot.

As such, when taking this drug there is no way I can really win.  Seeing it as a drug helps quell my desire for it.  I will never likely be able to moderate unless I have some way to overcome the drug's effects.  Right now I don't think I can.  (Again that lack of "forever" in my writing but I'll take that for now.....)


Monday, April 13, 2020

But it just felt so good.......sort of....

Hello blog,

I'm back.  I can't believe I haven't written since November.  Frankly, I just got tired with all the bullshit going on in my head about drinking and decided to tune it drinking.  Aargh.

My problem is it felt so "good" I thought.  Coming home at the end of the day was so exciting!  I looked forward to "wine"-ding down with wine.

My drinking self kept telling me how good I looked, how great I felt.  I was working out a lot, had been consistently for a year and a half!  I had the best relationship yet with the hubs.  Felt better about myself in years......except for the drinking.

I still couldn't beat the shame and loathing that went on deep inside me because EVERY FRICKING TIME I had a glass of wine it led to more.  No matter what I did, no matter how many times I said it wouldn't.

While I still had some times where I didn't remember much after dinner, I was never really hung over the next day.  Got up and went to the gym.  I was gaining weight, though, not losing.  I still had moments where I know my son could tell I'd had a "few".  (I hid that by drinking more after dinner when he had left the table and gone back into his room - or I drank so much right before dinner that it didn't appear to hit me until later. )

I finally, however, couldn't ignore the health symptoms sneaking up on me.  They were really subtle.  Last August my legs starting hurting at night.  I've thought sciatica, piriformis syndrome, etc.  I went to the doctor in late October and that's what he thought it was.  I had had great bloodwork in June so he didn't retest.  He felt my abdomen and didn't see any liver or other issues.  Phew, home free.  Okay so I continued drinking with occasional bouts of stopping.

My fingernails started going weird on me.  The whites starting melting back was the only way to describe it.  Still not sure if that was nail fungus from a funky manicure or something else.  I think I have finally beat that but it took months.  I amp'd up on vitamins that included vitamin B, just to be safe.

My legs started hurting more, however, down the sides.  I think I have some sort of Peroneal Nerve damage.  Not much but enough to notice.  Hmmm.....that's related to alcohol abuse.

Bottom line is I abuse alcohol even if I don't get to the point of real embarrassment or any "rock bottom" defining moments.  I think it may be harder to stop when you are a huge gray area drinker as I am.  There is so much of the feel good to remember and not enough of the bad.

I got to a point though over the last few weeks where I just needed to change.  Not really sure what was pivotal but it started with quitting working out to relax my legs for a bit and get a restart.  I used a personal trainer who was one of those who talked about nothing except her own weight and detoxing and dieting and I just got totally burned out.

I started Nutrisystem back on Feb 9 to start losing weight.  I didn't have dramatic loss because I kept drinking quite often but I'm down about 10 lbs. 

I started up with some sober tools I had never tried before.  New books, Bubble hour etc.  They really helped.

I debated coming back to my blog because every time I write about how well I'm doing, I then quit on myself.  But I thought, well, maybe a comment here or there will help me when I get those bad cravings.  This time really does feel different.  No, for real, it does.  I'll get into that more later.

I'm on Day 4 today as I start counting again.  I looked at my first Day 4 from when I first started my blog.........  DAY 4 - I FEEL SO SMALL

Wow.  It really hit home this morning that every word is still true.  On top of that, in today's environment, I still have a job paying income, the hubs has a job paying income and my son loves quarantine.  The little stinker gamer has been training for it his whole life!  School is actually keeping him busy at home and he gets to socialize with the world through his technology.

Drinking has no place in my life.  I feel pitifull.  So weak.  There is no reason for my drinking.  It is just a gawdawful habit that I need to be done with.  I can't moderate and my immune system is going to be trashed if I continue.  My family has a history of cancer, albeit surviving it, but still.  Why am I contributing to this possible eventuality?  I CAN learn to relax in the evening and have joy in my life without alcohol, I just have to be patient!

What a rambling blog post.  Oh well.  I just felt I needed to get it down that I was trying again.  I'm not sure how often I'll blog.  I'm trying to resurrect my piano playing and my spanish learning.  So many things I can do instead of drinking!!

Let me know if anyone reads this and is joining me.  It does help to have a sober buddy.  And Lia, if you read this, I'm sorry to have not been in touch, just didn't want to be a trigger to you or anyone else until I could get my shit together to really, really try again.

I have read so often that it takes 3 or 4 years for someone to really stop after they truly identify they have a problem.  Well, I am at my 4 year point so here goes.....

Today, I'm proud I cooked a full Easter dinner yesterday, with no alcohol involved!  An 8lb ham for 3 people!  Lol.  We're going to be having ham for awhile in our house.   But I did it all sober!  Hooray! (note:  Easter has always been emotional for me since I got engaged to first hubby on Easter.  It was always a special day for me even before that.  Sucked to get divorced and remember that every Easter.  And then having Easter yesterday with no other family around really stunk.  So doing it sober and the first time I ever cooked a ham by myself (okay warmed it up and glazed it but whatever....) was just a really big deal for me.

Hugs to everyone struggling right now and thanks to all the bloggers who continue to cheer me up with their posts that they don't even know I read.  I know my blog is hard to comment on so anyone can email me at if they prefer that.