Listening to the radio in the car today, I happened to hear two separate alcohol-related discussions: one was about someone who makes cocktails with interesting herbs, the other was related to a group of journalists who had undergone various tests while doing Dry January.  Without going into too much detail, the gist of the latter was that the researchers had been amazed by the results of these tests which had shown significant health improvements in a very short space of time. If there was a drug which did that, the researcher said, it would be worth billions. The herbal cocktail lady was describing how she creates different drinks with herbs from the garden; they all sounded pretty potent. When the interviewer asked if there were any mocktail versions available, the lady rather scathingly remarked that there were, but that these were for the ‘sanctimonious and serene’. And ‘sensible’, the interviewer suggested.

As you will have seen from my post yesterday, I am finding myself drawn to these sorts of medical findings on radio or television programmes, or in the papers,  perhaps to add weight to what I’m doing.  It’s as though I don’t quite have faith in myself.  My short holiday with my husband is rapidly approaching, and I am seriously concerned that I won’t be able to stay strong.  We have been married for 18 years, and I have never had a holiday with him without drinking.  I know it sounds feeble of me to be anxious about it, but that is how I am feeling.  23 days today, so I do feel that I’m making progress, but these anxieties are preoccupying me.

13 thoughts on “Listening”

  1. Ive just finished my first ever sober vacation. YOU CAN DO IT. REMEMBER its not the booze we want specifically BUT simply the numbing effect to take bad feelings awsy! Try a different NUMBER……chocolate, coffee, shopping, apple cider. Shit i dont know, anything BUT DONT DRINK.!!!
    Be sttong. You know you dont want to give up on all your hard work now as you are doing SO SO WELL!!!
    Hugs from soon to be back in NZ

  2. Hi Annie reading your blog every day – you are such a parallel to me – I dreaded my first vacation away with Mike married 23 years then – and it WAS DIFFERENT – we didn’t scoff wine at a little table on the pavement of a cafe every evening or have a long boozy lunch and then make love all afternoon at the hotel – not that I ever remembered – we had way more fun being mindful and present with each other and doing way more fun things together – we hired bikes and went riding – we had lazy breakfasts we had joint massages – we hiked and visited museums did movies – we did way more and every day he loves me more for not drinking our marriage has improved 10 fold – mike still drinks and gets drunk which I still find hard BUT THIS IS MY JOURNEY it sounds like you hubby is a huge supporter of you and I know it will be hard but it will be good too JUST DIFFERENT – you are doing so well keep it up and hang in there
    Praying for you

  3. I’ve just read those articles Annie. They are very encouraging. If that can be achieved in a month how much healthier will our insides be in a year? I’ve got weekend plans over the next couple of months that I know will be hard but I still think my life when drinking is much harder. Keep going:)

  4. Yes. It will be different. It might even suck, if you expect it will. We have pretty stubbon streaks, us drinkers.
    But it also might be wonderful. You might show yourself that you are stronger than the booze. That being clear and present and with your hubby is more important that spending your time together in a boozie fog.

    I think it is pretty clear which one i recommend. In th end, it is unlikely you will find anyone here who supports taking a break from sobriety for a vacation. Did you see Belle s mose recent email. Very serious stuff.

    I am cheering you on all the way. And i know your hubby is too. Why don’t the two of you agree on a booze free trip. Extra desserts all around instead.


  5. You can do a sober holiday. I spent a holiday sober in Las Vegas. The pre holiday thoughts about having a sober holiday were a million times worse than the reality. Bring books, make plans to ahead of time so you have a schedule to fall back on. My husband drinks and it didnt phase me at all. I was happily surprised at how unscary it was while it was happening.

  6. I think you’ll be just fine on vacation! You have a different mind set this time around, not “poor me I can’t drink” but “I’m amazing I won’t drink”. Yes, you’re anxious about it but sound very strong and determined.
    Mary. 💗💗

  7. Hey happy 23 days how wonderful to go into a holiday clear headed and your best self. I think planning is the key. And if you’re sober in this country surely being in a different country doesn’t change your sober-ness (bad word I’m sorry). its just geography. Imagine how much more you might enjoy the holiday without all that horrible guilt.

  8. Could you ask him to not drink too on your holiday in support of you? If he doesn’t have a drinking problem it shouldn’t be a problem. At the stage you are at you need all the help you can get. At my beginning I asked my husband to not let me drink no matter what and for him to remind me of why I had stopped. I hope this helps.

  9. You can do it!
    Think in terms of how many different things you can do this time being sober!
    Peace and Hugs!

  10. Hi Annie. The thought of going on holiday is scary isn’t it? We are going to the Gold Coast in late Feb and like you, I have never gone without booze before whilst on holiday. This will be our 5th time staying at this resort and each time we’ve drunk every single night. I will be thinking of you when you go away. When do you go? We can do this Annie!! A x

  11. Just returned from a sober vacation and while it is very different it’s not as hard as you fear. There were only a couple of times during the witching hours that I thought of drinking and I think it was because I was tired and hungry. Plan ahead and begin telling yourself this will be a sober vacation. Don’t allow your brain to process ‘what ifs’ or ‘but only.’ You’ve committed to being sober. Start visualizing yourself on the day after you return home sober, how great would you feel about yourself?

  12. I’m having similar jitters, I’m going away for a week towards the end of Feb and have never ever had a sober holiday as an adult (I’ll be at about 10 weeks by then). I’m going to take my camera, a sketchbook, good books and be much more proactive than usual about finding interesting non-drinking things to do before going. I think in the past I’ve wasted some lovely opportunities to see beautiful things because I’ve been content to just slob out drinking all day rather than get off my butt and explore. The extra desserts suggestion sounds like a good plan too! Stay strong!


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