On a plain

I’m on day 25, which is remarkable for me – the second longest I’ve gone without alcohol in c.22 years – but I’ve reached something of a plateau. I think I just want to get over the line of the end of the month. 30 days feels like a psychological landmark.

In a slightly ‘meh’ mindset, it’s a good time to check back into some sobriety blogs and keep the focus up. One story stuck with me, from the blog Stick a fork in me…I’m done. It’s a short anecdote, worth a read, where the author volunteered to leave a (dry) BBQ to get her child a coat, and took the opportunity at home to have a sly glass of wine. A benign act, which actually could be recounted very humorously, but it’s the last line that stood out. Somewhere in her brain, there was a thought running – this probably isn’t the way normal people drink.

It resonated with me, not because of the scenario itself – I don’t have kids, and therefore rarely go to parties without alcohol – but because it’s rooted in day-to-day routine. That fatigue that comes with thinking, ‘shall I have a drink tonight? How can I create a space in this situation where I can get a drink?’ and the lingering voice that says, ‘most people probably don’t think, or drink, like this.’ It’s not a dramatic story involving hospitals, wreckage or broken relationships, just a snapshot of a life that has come to discreetly involve alcohol wherever possible.

People take their cues to change from anywhere, and any event that prompts someone to improve their life is equally as valid as any other. I like thinking about this story. As I get more days under my belt, it’s helpful to remember one’s own moment of thinking, ‘you know what, with the drinking, you need to have a word with yourself.’ Day 25 is undramatic, and all the better for it.

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