When I say doldrums, I don’t want to give the impression that I’m really depressed; it’s more that I feel stagnant somehow, waiting for something to happen. I’ve been on Day 3 plenty of times before, and at this stage I usually feel pretty positive, as it’s all still new and fresh. Then – usually – I start to talk myself out of the whole sobriety thing, and I hit Friday night with renewed vigour for my drinking. How is this time going to be different? How can I make it different?
Well, this time I’ve got this blog. I said I was going to write something every day for at least 30 days. So if I don’t, you’ll know I’ve cheated, or can’t face you all. Over the past few months, there have been several people who have stuck by me, even when I told them that I didn’t want to continue being sober and wanted to try moderating. No one judged me; they just gently advised and stood beside me and let me find out for myself. I’ve never met these people in person. Unpickled and Mrs D were crucial to my decision to give sobriety a go, and once I began the 100 day challenge, Belle came into my life. She introduced me to Fernie, my wonderful sober penpal, who continued to email me even through my drinking patch. And Viatoday found me through an old BFB conversation, and contacted me when I was feeling really blue. These voices spoke to me from a lighter place, and helped me to begin again this time. And now that I’ve started this blog, I’ve found myself in touch with other bloggers whose blogs I’ve sometimes commented on, and it feels as though I have more support than ever.
How strange then that my sober support in the ‘real’ world is virtually non-existent. My husband doesn’t even know I’m writing a blog yet. And I can’t bring myself to tell my friends that I’m on this sober path as last time a couple of people said I was boring, and when I started drinking again one of them texted me to say, ‘Phew!’ So I don’t think people liked the non-drinking me.
Last night, I never got round to having that bath. I drank my herbal tea and went to bed, but had unsettling dreams – I seem to remember flashing lights! All quite disturbing. Not sure how the next few nights will go, but am beginning to feel itchy about the weekend, and the various social events I’ve got. I just need to remember my wise online friends and to carry on carrying on.
17 thoughts on “Day 3 doldrums”
People who say whew when you revert to drinking clearly have their own best interest at heart.
Sorry to be honest, but when I stopped drinking I had some of the same and most of those friends are no longer close. Mainly because without the wine it became apparent that they were not real friends.
Keep blogging. Stick with it. Life will get better!
I know you’re right about those friends. It’s difficult isn’t it. People are so used to my being the drinking person at parties, but they often didn’t see the sorry hungover person the next day. If you can believe this possible, I’ve just booked a holiday for next summer, and I’m panicking about not drinking! One year away! And I’m still only on Day 3!! What’s going on??? Annie x
hi annie… I’m new to being sober and blogging as well. day 14 for me. a personal record 😉 good luck and stay strong when you see your friends. I’ve been avoiding mine completely until I’m a bit stronger and have “my sober legs” on a bit more securely 🙂
Annie, I am nervous about this weekend too. This coming Friday, I have dinner plans with girlfriends. It is a birthday dinner for one of the girls. I think, “What am I going to say? How is it going to sound, when I decline a toast for my friend’s birthday?” And I am nervous about my birthday too – which is not until late October! Then I stop myself and think, “Come back to today.” I tell myself to not think ahead 60 days, 30 days, 10 days, 4 days, 3 days – just stick with today. It is not a natural thing for me at all, as I am a planner, and a worrier, and a thinker. It takes a lot of effort – but I tell myself I can and will deal with those days, situations, and conversations when the time comes. Sometimes I go back and read my pledge email to Belle even. I just try to say focused on today thinking in those moments of greatest temptation, “I promised myself I will not drink today.” The next morning I am so happy. Also, thanks for the mention! You have been so instrumental in my success so far too!
I was writing a reply to llpetunia and pressed send as your comment came through on today’s post, so hope my replies make sense! You are doing so well viatoday, and are so far ahead! You’re an inspiration to me. Not thinking so far ahead is really good advice, as that has definitely been one of my downfalls in the past. Annie x
Yes, I’m sure avoiding social occasions would be wise at this point, but I’m going to white knuckle it and hope for the best. Hmmm. That doesn’t sound like a good plan now I’ve written it down. Thanks for commenting; Day 14 is brilliant! Annie x
I went out socially at the beginning but I didn’t like it. It felt stilted and I felt awkward so I stopped unless it was absolutely crucial. I’m fine about it now. You need to make a plan for Friday. What are you going to do? How are you going to stop yourself from drinking? Have you get anybody you can phone or e-mail if you need added strength? Stick with it. You’re doing fine.
I’m hoping that as it’s a lunch, and we all have to pick kids up from school afterwards, it’ll be a relatively sober affair. I’m planning to take a bottle of AF fizz. Thanks for the advice – I definitely need a plan. Annie x
Hey there Annie, good to here you’re on day 3 – that’s great 🙂 I can relate to the lack of real-world sober support …. I don’t know if it’s that I find it hard to talk about or that people who are not on this road simply “don’t get it”. I spend a lot of time pretending that it’s no big deal, like I’ve just decided to switch to an organic diet or give up dairy or something, and then get cheesed off because no-one realises what a big deal it is. Viatoday is full of wise words re staying in the present (I get occasional panics about xmas!) and also about drinking buddies / friends. That is such a tough one, but I love this quote: “Those who mind don’t matter and those who matter don’t mind.” I thought it was Dr Seuss, but googled it to check the quote and apparently that is not so, it is someone called Bernard Baruch.
Wibble over. Hugs. xx
Hi MTM. Last time I tried the sober thing for a longer stretch, a couple of people really did react in a negative way, and were visibly relieved when I started drinking again. This time, I’m interested to see what their reaction will be. Ultimately, I know I need to not mind about anyone’s reaction, and work through all those things; but I wonder if some people won’t take me seriously, because it looks as though I’m stopping and starting?
Hi Annie, I really feel for you on this. It is so hurtful to get those negative reactions and I don’t want to sound like I’m lecturing saying “you shouldn’t care what they think” because I am the last person on earth who would be able to follow through on that myself. I care *way* too much what others think. But ultimately, this has to be case of how seriously we take ourselves – and screw what everyone else says – we need to believe in ourselves that we are worth this effort. Treat yourself well, Annie, and be kind to yourself. They will believe you in a years’ time if you’re still hanging out together! Also – just wondering – do you have any other non-boozy groups of friends? I go to 2 book groups, in one group they drink lots of wine and meet in the pub a lot (and I love them, I still see these ladies, but tend to skip the pub meet ups) and one group are very much tea and cake. I *love* meeting up with the tea and cake ladies, just so easy. Meet up with friends, lovely chats and catch ups, cake (added bonus there) and just no stress and worry on the what-will-they-think-about-the-drink thing. Perhaps just try to make some morning coffee dates when you can, and avoid evening social things for a bit? Just helps to avoid the isolating thing, whilst still staying comfortable and safe. I know none of this helps with the looming birthday, and it appears I’m going on again. Also, way past my bedtime! Good luck with day 4. xx
It is easy to say what others think is none of your business, but hard to believe!
I think you should just be willing to ask friends for support because you feel it’s best for you at this time. Period.
And be willing to make a hasty exit from any social event that makes you feel stressed. Protecting yourself is vital for a while.
Worry about next years vacation next year!
Good Morning Annie – day 3 done here, moving into day 4..Like you about this time I start reconsidering whether or not I really want to do this. I read on a blog the other day that if you want to drink, give yourself 15 minutes, talk it through, think about why, and think about what happens if you do. I did that yesterday – several times (ha!) but made it. It also said after 15 minutes, if you still want to drink, do it again…long day needless to say. I’ve been trying to get sober for so long I can’t even remember and I started thinking what a waste of my time and energy. Why is trying to do something good for us so damn hard? Hang in there. It will get better. We CAN do this. Signed, your personal cheerleader:]
Hello! Thanks for your encouragement. I really need it. I’ve been wavering big time over here. Half way through Day 4, but I think my next post is going to be about the doubts I’m having. The 15 minute wait idea is a good one! Glad we’re in this together. Annie x
You’re the first non-Belle I’m following in the sober blogosphere and your posts are encouraging me. I’m on day 3 for the enth time but first time I’ll be blogging. I’m excited and nervous. Eee.
Hello! I’m glad my posts are encouraging you. I don’t know what I’m doing, but I’m just feeling my way forward day by day at the moment. Good luck on your new blogging path and stay in touch. Annie x
Thanks. You too.