Am I awake?

Saturday morning. I need a plan of action. My series of recent Day Ones tells me that I want to keep trying, but that my current plans aren’t working. I fall at the very first hurdle, and because I don’t have many days under my belt, I give up too easily. So, I need to get more sober days built up, that’s the first thing. I know there is deeper work to do, but before I get to that, before I even really think about that, I need to devise more practical ways to get through even a few days of sobriety.

The mind games are maddening. I can set myself up to succeed, have the best plans all prepared (alcohol-free alternatives, for example) but the voice that turns those plans into booze is currently stronger than the other voice. I need strategies to reverse those voices. I can’t even remember how I managed in the first few days of my other sober attempts, but each time it has felt different anyway.

That Bubble Hour episode I listened to yesterday really struck a chord. The contributor was describing walking past people drinking wine in restaurants and wishing that she were one of them. Only when she realised that she couldn’t drink like them, that she’d never be able to drink like them, did she surrender. I think part of my problem is that I still can’t accept that I won’t be able to drink normally, and that is what is holding me back.

I’m digging too deep for Day One. It’s Saturday, so another Saturday night looms. I need practical ways of getting through it.

My friends, your help and advice means so much to me. Although I am struggling, your strength really does help me, and I love you.

13 thoughts on “Am I awake?”

  1. Those ideas are what are referred to as “lurking notions” of drinking – thinking (and hoping) that we can still manage this, that we can still drink like gentle folk, that we are still capable of controlling it. And as long as that keeps ticking, as small as it is, we continue the cycle. It sucks, and the only way we get past it is through surrender. Just like a diabetic surrenders to a lifetime of insulin shots and/or blood testing, etc. we surrender to the fact that we can’t drink like normal people. Those folks who can have one or even less than one (what??!) are not us.

    I hope today is a good one for you 🙂

    Paul

  2. Annie, I do totally get where you are coming from. Something that helped me be sober for 9 weeks was Jason Vale’s book – kick the drink easily. Have you read it?
    Tx

  3. With you in spirit all day today! Agree with posts above – I can not ever just have one, one does me no good and the amount that I used to think helped my mood was destructive. Finally figured that out! It will come to you. JUST KEEP TRYING!! Took me at least 2 years of day 1’s to get the right mind set. Day 57, still doubt my strength but know I can’t go back.
    Love you! Mary 💗

  4. Sitting here this Saturday morning feeling the same as you. Those damn Friday nights! Plus it was my birthday, so I drank! Can’t stay sober on your birthday. right??? And now things are not so great. Arghh!!! When I was sober for my 30 days I really loved those Saturday mornings. That was the best part. Not this! I feel your pain. What to do? It is such a dilemma. I really want to be that person who just has a a glass or two and can be happy about it. But that never seems to work. Those two glasses always seem to become a giant bottle and then some. The idea of longterm sobriety does not settle well, but I am feeling this may be the only path. You give me inspiration.

    1. Well said, just what I needed to hear – I’m going through the same thing as both of you. sucked down a bottle again last night. grrr!!!! Why can’t I just be happy with one glass? it’s so hard to accept that I have a problem.

  5. Hi Annie. Just wanted to stop in and say don’t give up. For me, it took a lot of try, try, trying. Try everything you can think of and keep working at it. Check out some meetings, websites, books, keep up with the sober blogs. Somehow, something will click and the tables will turn. The part of you that wants to be sober has to build strength- enough strength to win over the other side. I think it will happen for you because it happened for me! I am only on day 78 but that in itself is a bloody miracle. I had SO many day 1’s. I thought I was a lost cause. But I eventually got so tired of giving up on my word to myself… And the pain of continuing to drink was unbearable. I had no other option.
    The weekends are hard, not going to lie. I kind of had to resign myself to protecting myself and not going out for the first 6 weeks or so. I am still not going out a lot and being careful but now I can be around booze sometimes and it doesn’t bother me much. The craving to drink is diminished, but I struggle with feeling isolated and bored. It takes a lot of patience, which is a skill to be developed (for me, anyways). I just keep reminding myself that I am healing and it takes time. I have hope that I will have a full life that I am genuinely proud of… I am already so much more at peace than before, and filling my time with awesome things.
    Hang in there- you’ll get there!
    lee xo

  6. I think for the first week it’s best to just build a bubble and hide in it. No booze in the house, not parties, lots of chocolate and self care and crappy movies. Do as little as possible.

    The first bit it just about survival, not introspection and life changes. That comes next.

    I made so many plans that I never followed. Eventually I guess I go sick of planning and finally took action.

    You can do it.

  7. Hi Annie. I’ve been following your blog for a few weeks now. You’ve been incredibly helpful to me! I am also trying (more like struggling) to live without the booze. After a week sober, had a awful night last night, which ended in me getting absolutely wasted in front on my family (parents, siblings, aunts, uncles, etc). The shame spiral today is UNBEARABLE! All I can do is keep trying. Day 1!

  8. Good morning from ‘the future’. It is Saturday night for you now, and I hope you are practising loads of self compassionate talk and treating yourself. Hide in your bubble and protect that delicate sobriety like your life depends on it! i have managed to (miracle!) and it really really is worth it. i know you will get there, it sucks big time to start with. my recovery has been 2 years in the making as i posted yesterday.
    lots of love
    Lisa
    http://www.thecword-compassion.com

  9. Hey Annie – I realize I’m posting this rather late, but I think having a plan to get through the cravings (like, going out to dinner at a place that doesn’t serve alcohol, making sure you have your alcohol free drink of choice available, stocking the freezer with ice cream), is really helpful. I also like to “think through the drink” when I’m having a craving – once I see myself at glass number five making a fool of myself, and then waking up the next morning wanting to die, it helps make first glass look less appealing. Have you thought about adding tools to your tool box? Maybe in-person meetings or seeing a counselor, if the online support isn’t enough? Getting alcohol out of the house until you feel stronger? I know that you’re in such a tough place right now but have faith that you will figure it out. There’s something in you that is determined to quit – which is why you’re still here, still writing – and that is going to pull you through this. I’m beaming good sober wishes to you from the US!

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