Storm clouds ahead…

Riding the strugglebus tonight.
Work is getting hectic and I’m feeling the pressure. It’s just going to get worse as we have to redo almost all of our literature in the near future. And by we I mean pretty much me. Not sure how I secured this graphics/editor position with the paycheck of a call center employee, but lucky me.
I also feel like I’m getting sick. It’s gone all through my office and I’ve been taking all the vitamins and trying my best to avoid it but I’m feeling pretty run down tonight with a scratchy throat.
Not sure the last time I was sick and I didn’t drink through it to “burn it out” of my system.
Came home and did the treadmill and now I’m really wanting to drink. Blah!
Feeling the grief and loss tonight of not having that outlet.
I’ve given myself another “No drinks til Friday” rule to get me through the week and I intend to stick to it, but tonight is the first night where it’s been really difficult this time around.
I guess I had to know eventually it would catch up to me. I definitely had my head in the pink clouds last week and now here come the storm clouds.
Meh. I might write later, but right now I’m going to go drink some sparkling water and stuff my face.
Ug.

Cheers to not having to hide things.

I live in a very small town.
There is one smallish grocery store seven miles away and a much bigger one about fifteen miles away.
I typically do my shopping at the closer one as they mostly carry everything I need, including my booze. I would usually buy two large bottles of vodka, sometimes three depending on how much I currently had at home.
Being a small store, I knew that all the cashiers pretty much had to know either myself or someone in my household must have a drinking problem but even though I saw them every week, I didn’t KNOW them so I didn’t much care.
However, being a small town there were several times where I would run into neighbors or even friends or friends of friends while I was doing my shopping. I would try to shop at the same day and time every week to avoid anyone because well, it had been working. I think mostly people try to do their shopping on a fairly regular schedule so it mostly worked. I also try and cover the booze once it is in my cart with my reusable shopping bags arranged to look perfectly messy over the bottles laying on their sides.
I know that there is one particular person that lives in my town that shops on Sunday afternoons as I’ve run into him multiple times around the same time when I can’t face the grocery store on Saturdays due to a massive hangover.
He is not what I would call a friend, but I wouldn’t call him not one either. We have run in the same circles and he has been very good friends with the fiance of one of my very good friends. They all have been in the recovery community together for many years. He has danced in and out of recovery and I don’t know what his current status is and it’s really none of my business…but let’s just say, he has to know all the signs of an alcoholic very well. And well, three bottles of vodka in my cart is not exactly a subtle hint that I might have a problem…
Anyhoo, I ran into him at the grocery store this afternoon as I was mostly done my shopping. I was checking my phone to see if Hubs had texted anything else to pick up and I heard a voice say hi.
I looked up and there he was in front of me. I said hi back and inquired how he was doing as I was quickly looking down at my cart to make sure the booze was hidden and I realized…I wasn’t buying any. There wasn’t any in my cart to give away my secret. Instead of being paranoid that he would find me out, I was able to have a pleasant exchange without having to try and escape at the earliest break in the conversation and then shop even longer though I was done so that he wouldn’t see unload the bottles onto the conveyor belt at the check out (oh yes, I have done this dance before).
It felt SO GOOD! I didn’t have to hide anything because there was nothing to hide!!
I loved it!!
It’s all the little things like this, the weight loss, getting amazing sleep and no hangovers that add up to GIANT things.

Wow.

I got on the scale this morning to find that I have lost six pounds since Monday.
SIX POUNDS!
Now granted I am a big girl to begin with but I have been easily been eating way more than I ever did when I was drinking. AND I am about to start my period so I am actually retaining water right now!
THAT is how many calories I was consuming from booze.
DUDE!
I realize it is bloat and it won’t last, but holy freaking cow, talk about a motivator!!!
So last night was my “time up” as in the time that I gave myself to stay sober until. When I started this last week, I told myself that I just needed to stay sober until Friday and see how it went from there.
I was pretty much mostly planning to drink last night. Hubs was talking about picking up some take out on the way home and it was shaping up to be a perfect Friday evening to imbibe.
Then he got a text from his dad asking if we wanted to go out to dinner.
Now if you will remember, my FIL just lost his dog the night before due to a hit and run outside of his house. It wasn’t like I was going to be like “Nah, sorry dude, but I got these drinking plans sooo….”
Of COURSE we were going to do whatever it was he wanted if he was reaching out…mostly because he doesn’t usually reach out.
So we tooled on over to his house after work and took him out to a local restaurant that we’ve gone to with them sometimes. A nice family place with a lot of selection.
We all split nachos and FIL got a salad as well.
I was still on the fence about drinking when I got home. I was trying not to eat too much but the nachos were pretty awesome.
FIL seemed to be in an okay mood and he told me that he liked to think of his dog passing as his wife calling the dog home to her. That surprised me because they are not a religious family but also warmed my heart and gave me a little peace.
This was the first time we had all gone out to eat without my MIL and I noticed as we were pulling into their house after and seeing all of her things that I had really missed her during that meal. I don’t think I particularly noticed it at the time because I was trying to keep FIL in good spirits but yeah. I started to tear up a bit in the driveway and had to bite it back.
We got home and I noticed I was still a bit full but not enough that I couldn’t “drink through it” as I had done countless times before.
I fed the dogs and got in my jammies, still not having made a decision.
I played around on my computer and hemmed and hawed and decided I just really didn’t want to. I blamed it on still being a bit full from dinner but I think I just really didn’t want to wake up feeling like poo in the morning.
It’s been so freaking nice to wake up and not have that pounding racing heart and throbbing head every morning this week. I mean, it’s amazing how you just get used to it when you do it every day. I have felt like crap for soooooo long that it just became the status quo. I accepted that it was just the way that I was going to feel. Every. Single. Day.
And to not…well that was nothing short of fantastic.
So I jumped in to bed and finished a fluff book that I had been reading off and on and went to sleep.
These are baby steps and I’m still not saying forever. My brain will not allow it, but for now, just for today I am pretty proud of not drinking last night. 😁❤

More Sad News

Last night Hubs was over at his Dad’s house visiting. It’s something he has done every Thursday and Sunday since his mom passed last month. Just to sort of keep him company and check on him and all that. I usually join him on the Sunday visits.
I came home and didn’t do a whole lot. Hubs was bringing dinner home with him (he makes dinners for his dad on these nights and makes extra for us to eat when he gets home) so I didn’t have to worry about cooking.
I was initially a bit worried about being home alone and not drinking…not terribly worried because it’s not that big of a deal, but I do tend to let myself think about being naughty because I’m unsupervised sometimes.
Anyway, I was laying on the bed around 6:30 playing Homescapes on my phone when it showed that hubs was calling. This is unusual because we normally text anything we need to each other.
I answered and he said: “I’m so sorry, but I’m about to ruin the rest of your night.”
“What’s going on?” I asked with a bit of apprehension.
“I’m so sorry, Xay. I hate to do this to you.”
At this point, I’m getting very nervous but still in the back of my mind I’m thinking it’s just something like a flat tire or something that I need to come get him for.
And then he told me that one of my Father in laws dogs had gotten out of her pen that night and ran into traffic. She was struck and killed.
They only found out when someone (not the person that hit the dog) recognized the dog on the side of the road (they are a fairly well known family and the only house on this stretch of road) and stopped to come knock on the door and let them know.
They had to go gather her off the roadside and put her in the back of my FIL’s pick up truck. There was no place open at that point and she had already passed so FIL said he would keep her in there until the morning then he would drive her to their vet and have her cremated.
I didn’t know all of the details on that at the time of course, just that Hubs told me that she had been hit and had passed. He didn’t want to wait to tell me when he got home because in his mind he felt like he would have been deliberately keeping something from me (that is the way the logic in his brain works) so he was sorry to have to tell me over the phone.
I cried. I wasn’t especially close to the dog. His dogs are very barky and don’t really let us near them, but I am a HUGE animal lover and the idea of an animal death makes me crazy. I once accidentally hit a squirrel that ran out in front of my car and I cried for two days. But even more than that, I was so so so sad for my father in law. The man just lost his wife of fifty some odd years a month ago and now his dog??? WTF Universe????
I hung up the phone and immediately looked at the clock. I did some math in my head and the truth is, I could have had some drinks and still gotten to bed at a reasonable hour if I had really wanted to.
I didn’t want to. I didn’t want to feel the way I was feeling, but I didn’t want to drink either.
I took some of my herbal calmative (that sounds like weed, but I promise it’s not 😀 ) and then went out into the living room and loved on my own dogs.
Hubs got home about 45 minutes later and I could tell he was very out of sorts. This had hit him pretty hard.
We hugged it out and I let him go decompress, letting him know I was there if he wanted to talk.
We went to bed shortly after that and I had a bit of a hard time getting to sleep, but that is understandable.
Tonight we are taking my father in law out to dinner right after work and see how he is doing.
I’m just kind of angry right now that this good person (father in law) is getting dealt such a shitty hand right now.

Progress and Doubts

Slept a total of around 7 hours last night and it was quite lovely. I woke up about half the amount of times that I had been the last two nights so I’ll score that as a win.
Still went to bed to read early and I see myself doing that for at least another week or so. It’s just easier and I enjoy laying in bed with my tea (Hubs brought me another cup last night and announced it as my nightly cup of tea) and my book and my dogs. I’m all about whatever gives me enjoyment without booze right now.

Hubs emailed me earlier that his sister is having a birthday party for her dog (no I’m not joking) next weekend and we are invited to go…it’s being held at her favorite winery just down the road from us.
I told him I would probably go. Wine was never really my thing, though I do enjoy a nice cold glass of chardonnay on occasion, especially on a warm day.
It got me thinking about where I want to go with this.
I told myself that I would stay sober until Friday, just to get myself in start lane. Saying forever was/is just too daunting for me right now.
I’ve honestly been enjoying my quiet nights without drinks at home. Couple that with the fact that it takes so long to get my sleeping regulated and that my anxiety has been lower than it has been in a while, makes me want to stay the course, but there is always that thought…
What if I can just have drinks on the weekends and stay sober during the week.
I know where that leads of course…we all do. Five sober days a week turns into four and then three and so on and so forth until it’s back to the daily hangovers and regrets.
I know that I can go to this party and not drink and I will be fine, so why did I instantly want to order a glass of wine when Hubs told me about the invite?
And will I always want to try and see if I can drink like a “normal person”?
I don’t know the answers and I don’t know if I will hold myself accountable beyond my goal of staying sober until this Friday (tomorrow).
I do know that right now, I feel pretty good. Waking up in the mornings is easier even if I didn’t get a lot of sleep. Not feeling like a giant slug at work is pretty cool. There isn’t the same sort of blind fear about not drinking that there was a week ago.
And yet my brain is whispering to me that I could still have all that if I just stay sober Sunday through Thursday. I think my brain is a liar…but it’s a pretty convincing one.

Updates

Last night, the sleeping was better than Monday night. Not great, but I figure all together I got about five or six hours of sleep so I’ll take it.
I didn’t really have much of a craving to drink when I got home…I mean, I feel like there will always be a pull when I first walk through the door after work. Well, at least until I get some serious months under my belt. It’s just something I have done for so long that it is just habitual. It’s what I do when I get home. I feed the dogs, get in my Pj’s and pour myself a healthy shot of vodka.
However, once I cracked open my sparkling water and chowed on some chips and dip, I was feeling pretty content.
Played my video game for a half an hour and then Hubs and I folded the weeks worth of laundry that had been sitting.
Hubs mostly took care of dinner and then I ate and retired to bed to read.
About ten minutes later, my husband did the sweetest thing. He came into the bedroom to bring me a cup of Rooibos tea in my favorite mug. I used to love to drink this tea and had kind of forgotten about it, it’s a nice, slightly sweet, relaxing tea. I discovered it when I had to quit caffeine due to my anxiety.
He put it on my nightstand and told me if I didn’t want it he would be back to collect it when he came to bed.
At first I wasn’t sure I wanted it but after the first sip I realized it was EXACTLY what I needed. Snugging under the covers with my book and a nice warm cup of tea. It was perfect!
It also made me realize how much me making an effort to stop or at least cut back on drinking is meaning to him. That hit me in the feels.
Not much else to report. It’s my night to cook dinner so I’ll try and get that done quickly when I get home. The kitchen is where I did all my drinking. I kept my vodka glass and chaser glass on the counter right next to the stove. This has made the kitchen seem like a bit of a danger zone to me when I am trying not to drink.
I’m finding it’s not as bad as I was making it out in my head, but still…there is a fear there.
I guess that is all I’ve got for now.
Thanks to all who have been commenting and supporting me, it means more than you could ever know. ❤ ❤ ❤

ETA: I didn’t have to cook as Hubs brought home pizza from a work meeting.
You now what is so funny? I am so conditioned to not eat until I’m drunk (usually around nine or ten) because overeating will kill the buzz.
I kept walking passed the kitchen tonight and thinking, wow that pizza smells good, I can’t wait to eat and then I realized THERE WAS NOTHING STOPPING ME!!! LOL!
I grabbed a plate and two slices and I’m now sitting here at six o clock completely satisfied and remember eating every single bite!
I love it!


Sleepless in Soberland

Last night was brutal. Not the actual not drinking part…that actually went relatively smoothly.
I ate my dinner early and was posted up in bed with my book by eight with no real cravings other than the initial ones I had upon arriving home from work.
What was so terrible was the fact that I could Not Get To Sleep at all last night.
I read for a bit until I felt sleepy, turned out the lights and put on my eye mask…and laid there…awake.
I know from experience that the first sober night after a long stretch of drinking nightly is rough and I think I let my fear of the thought of not being able to get to sleep get the best of me.
I think worried it into reality, if that makes any sense.
I took CBD oil and all my herbal calmatives and my magnesium spray and nothing worked. I would relax enough to feel like I might sleep and then I would worry that I was going to start twitching (this is something that typically happens a lot on my first night of sober sleeping after a long drinking period and therefore I was anticipating it too much) and I would start to have anxiety over it and so on and so forth until I was wide awake again.
I finally tried to change my mindset. I told myself that I was worrying about it too much and that there was no reason why I had to fear it. Even if it happened, I just had to wait it out until I could relax enough to fall asleep.
Finally around two in the morning I started to doze and of course kept jerking myself awake with my twitching. I tried to keep calm and get back to sleep after each one because the only thing I can really do when that happens is wait out my body until it is exhausted enough to sleep through it. That happened about an hour later. I slept fitfully after that but managed to get a total of about three jerky/snoring myself awake kind of sleep. Better than nothing I guess.
I’m not going to lie, the thought of getting up and slamming a few shots occurred to me a few times during the night. Each time I would push it away with the tentative promise that if it got too bad and too late, I would relent. However by the time I was desperate, it was past the point of no return. There would not have been time to “sleep it off” in time for work, and I was nothing if not a pretty functional and responsible drunk when it came to not showing up stinking of booze to my job in the mornings.
I’m completely out of it today. Like, my brain is mush and I am so super irritable and emotional. It doesn’t help that I am PMSing, but add that to very little sleep and alcohol withdrawal? Yeah, I’m a hot mess.
It’s so funny, I KNOW how to navigate my work day with a hangover, it may not be the funnest thing but it’s something I’m really used to. This whole no sleep thing/withdrawals is a whole other ball of wax.
Historically for me, sleep gets a bit better each night so I’m shooting for being tucked up in my bed super early tonight. Given how tired I am right now, it shouldn’t be an issue, but we’ll see.
No real cravings other than the initial pull to drink just because it’s what I always do when I get home from work. I’m not sure I would want to put a shitty passed out sleep on top of the lack of sleep that I got last night anyway.
Sorry if this entry sounds all over the place, see the above statement about my brain being mush. 😉
So fingers crossed for better sleep tonight!!!!

Today

So yesterday didn’t work out as planned. Shocking, I know.
Hubs was at his Dad’s helping him around the house and I opted to stay home. I needed to mentally prepare myself for not drinking by laying around in bed all morning playing Homescapes on my phone. 😉
I was doing okay…not great when he got home. I was preparing steps for my meal prep and only slightly wavering back and forth on whether I should drink or not.
I got the egg muffins all prepared and put them in the oven, feeling a bit smug if I’m honest that I was able to complete some sort of baking project without hitting the vodka.
It was about that time that my husband told me that we were going to clean out the Tupperware cupboard. Actually, if memory serves, he said he was going to do it and asked if I wanted to help.
I panicked. I have NO idea why, but I shit you not, the thought of cleaning out and organizing all our containers sober was absolutely terrifying!!
I pretended I was fine for the next half an hour (we weren’t going to start the organizing until the muffins were done) and then told my husband I was probably going to drink…and did so.
My brain was searching so hard for something to make me give in to that bottle that it chose picking over beat up food containers to make me have a panic attack and give in.
Writing this out now is literally making me shake my head at the stupidity of it, but I swear to you that it was an absolute real terror I felt at the thought of doing that sober.
I mean, if you could have seen the cupboard, you might KIND OF see why, but still…that is one of the stupidest excuses ever.
So I did drink yesterday, but not nearly the volume I usually do on a Sunday. Still more than anyone should in a given day, but no where near my usual weekend consumption.

Today was spent mostly waffling back and forth on whether or not to drink tonight. I would work myself up into thinking I could just have a couple drinks and then make myself read some more sober blogs and calm down and gain more resolve. Lather, rinse, repeat.
Spoiler alert: I’m not. Drinking that is.
We got home from work and I was still “undecided”. I mean, I mostly knew I really didn’t want to but we had some random dash lights come on in our car and we were going to try and hash out how to find out what was wrong so I admit to trying to find a way to use that as an excuse (how getting drunk in that situation could POSSIBLY help is beyond me now that I decided not to, but it was pretty convincing at the time) to drink.
I got home and emptied the dishwasher, did a load of whites and got myself a sparkling water.
I ate some chips and dip and then played around on my facebook game for awhile.
Hubs is currently making dinner and here I am writing this. I am hoping to be in bed by eight because I know sleep is going to be VERY hard to come by tonight.
So, I am telling myself to not drink until at least Friday. I know that isn’t much. It’s only four days, but it is the only way I can trick my brain into staying sober right now so that is what I’m doing.

Tomorrow.

Tomorrow is the day I decided I wanted to at least try a week sober.
I’m not going to lie, I’m already forming excuses in my mind as to why I need to not.
They are the lamest excuses of course, but they are forming.

  • I’m not ready.
  • I will still have Vodka in the cupboard (I just now noticed how I capitalize Vodka, hmm…).
  • I didn’t get to day drink today like normal on a weekend because we had such a lovely time at the toddler’s birthday party that we actually stayed instead of splitting after the normally acceptable hour.
  • I have to cook/meal prep tomorrow for the rest of the week and I clearly cannot do that sober.
  • I’m not ready.
  • What if it is such a nice day and I just want to day drink?
  • I’m pretty sure I’m going to be in a bad mood (REALLY??)
  • I might want to paint my nails and I’m not sure I’ve ever done that sober.
  • I’m not ready.
  • What if I want to …? (this list is endless and the reasons don’t even make any sense!

I got a lovely comment today from msnewleaf (I’m not savvy enough to tag her) today that gave me pause from all of that:

I am looking forward to reading about your Day 1 tomorrow. You can do it! It is NOT easy, but there are so many of us doing the same thing, and we can all support each other. The more I read about others’ experiences after they have had some significant time sober, the more I want what they have. It seems to take at least 3 or 4 to 6 months to really start to get good and then just gets better after that. I don’t know this from personal experience yet, but I’m determined to get there! You should come, too.

You should come, too.
That touched me.
I’m one of those FOMO ppl that never want to go anywhere but always want to be invited. As a result of never showing up anywhere I no longer get invited any longer. I’m totally fine with is because I never wanted to go in the first place, but the fact that I wasn’t invited hurts me. I realize this is totally stupid on my part and makes not sense but neither does most of my life so there. XD
This is an invitation I think I could get behind…I know I’m only shooting for one week right now, but the thought of my life getting so much better after putting in a few months of work sounds amazing. Like, SOOOOOOOO inviting.
I want that.

I just finally confessed to my hubby that I am going to try to do tomorrow and possibly next week sober. He is is usual supportive helpful self.
“Tell me if I need to hide the booze.”
“Let me know how I can help.”
“Do you need me to do anything?”
He’s amazing…but he has been through this before…SO many times. He expects nothing from me because of my history and he doesn’t want to be disappointed yet again. That should speak volumes to me.

Okay, I need to come back and read this tomorrow when I’m wavering. It tells me everything I need to know.

Things I envision myself doing whilst sober

So as I’m winding down my time to Sober Sunday, I am literally doing the title of this entry.

What will I do when I am not a slave to the vodka?

The answers shouldn’t be that complicated. A little over a year ago I had 3 weeks sober under my belt, but I don’t feel like was was “living” at that point. I feel like I was merely doing things to keep my sober time safe with no hiccups and there is NO shame in that.

But as I am reading sober blogs of ppl that have a significant amount of sober time, I wonder what I would do to improve my life more than just NOT poisoning it every day.

I mean, what would my schedule look like?

I would still go to work the same time, but I would be much more rested of course. I would work my full work week but maybe I might be energetic enough for a small walk at lunch instead of sitting and gossiping with the girls (not that there is anything wrong with that) for a half and hour.

When I got home from work would I have the energy and the inclination to get a half an hour work out in to power me through making dinner and doing some chores?

After that will I have the mindset to shower (no bath option for me) to have a rinse off and then start a skin care regime before I get ready for bed?

This sounds like I’m being sarcastic about it, but this is really what I want. I’m just so stuck in the: “Go to work hungover, come home from work to immediately drink, do as little as possible because I’m fat and lazy and pass out without being sure if I even ate dinner or how I left things with my husband.” mode.

God, no wonder I’m looking forward to Sober Sunday!

I do fear though, that getting sober will not take away my laziness gene…