Riding the Garbage Truck All the Way to the Dump…

Sometimes I forget why I wanted to quit my wine habit. I know that this is my brain playing cruel games with me. Often I forget when I have good friends around who are having a couple of drinks and I really want to join in. LIke last night, for instance. Everyone was enjoying wine and beer. We went skating, some played some hockey. Others just played with the dog in the snow. After some went to listen to a band playing in a bar in the ski village. Many worked on a big, group puzzle back at the ski condo. I knitted like a madwoman. I find stitching keeps my hands busy and my mind calm. When will this feel normal? When will this feel like I am not missing out? My mind only sees those that are able to drink.
There were also some around me last who chose not to drink. Funny how the mind does not focus on those folks – only the ones having cocktails. Because that is what my addicted brain wants to do – have lots of cocktails.
It is these moments that I sometimes question whether I am over-reacting by quitting alcohol entirely. I mean I do not present like a drunk. I am a loving wife and mom. I am a professional. I am a responsible, contributing member of society. I vote. I pay all of my bills on time. I have never had an impaired charge. I have never been arrested on a drinking related charge. I have never cheated on my husband. I do not shake, tremble or hallucinate when I quit wine. That is when I realize that I do not have to wait until these things happen to me. And if I think I am immune to all of the misfortune that comes to those who drink too much, then I am truly delusional. All of these things can and will happen to me. It is only a matter of time. I have an up close and personal example as my own dad is an end-stage alcoholic who suffers from wet-brain. He too started out as “normal” and “fun” with a job and a family. But it is all ending much differently for him. When I think of my dad, I am reminded of a post I read on the Women For Sobriety website. Drinking is like riding in a garbage truck and the end of the road is the dump. The bottom. Smelling, rotten, trash. Illness, disease, all things of value done. That is the road my life heads down when I am drinking. I do not have to ride the truck all the way to the dump – I can choose to get off the truck and go down a different road. By continuing to allow drinking in my life is to continue thumbing a ride on the garbage truck. End stop: dump. The final destination will be utter devastation. Looking at my dad confirms this fact beyond any doubt.
These are thoughts that I need to focus on in these early, strange, uncomfortable days. And I need to trust that right now I am just trying to establish a new normal and one day this new, much improved version of myself will be normal and the lushy, drunky drunk woman will one day hopefully seem so odd and not me at all. I want to be the very best version of myself no matter what. Alcohol will not allow that. Something has to give. So even though it feels odd and like I am missing out, I will NOT drink today because I cannot drink and be the woman I know I can be… The woman I want to be…


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