Rebel Wellness

2018 has arrived and I am still beyond grateful to be considering the possibilities for this brand spanking new year totally free from alcohol. This was my fifth holiday season without booze. I do notice how baffled people are that I simply don’t drink.

At work one of our service providers asked my husband what kind of wine I drink because he wanted to drop a bottle off before we closed shop for the holidays. When my husband told him that it was totally not necessary, he persisted. “No really, red or white? I am gonna bring one by so my as well be what she likes…” My husband told him “…actually she doesn’t drink at all and hasn’t for years…” Apparently after that little bit of information was shared, the phone went silent for a very pregnant pause. And then as though he could not have heard that last statement correctly, the service provider repeated the incredulous statement he had just heard, “…she doesn’t drink anything at all???” When he was reassured that he had heard correctly, my husband said the call ended awkwardly. I never received wine or a card or chocolate or a cookie. My sobriety completely knocked this guy off his game. I am totally fine with not receiving a holiday offering, we had lots (too much) already at our house. But… it does make me shake my head at what a stir somebody else’s tee-totalling or self-care in this department can cause.

I suppose I would have been equally weirded out back in my drinking days if someone had dropped that bomb on me too. It all seems so strange to me now though. It feels like I am living my life in a totally rebellious way. Going completely against the current. Doing what seems to be absolutely crazy to most. Rebel Wellness I have started to call it. If I didn’t drink coffee because it made me feel less well after ingesting, no one would bat an eye at that choice. If I chose not to eat meat for my own reasons, most people would not even think twice. If I decided veggies were not my thing, the response I would likely get would sound like this “huh.” But tell someone that I choose not to drink because it does not add value to my life and watch jaws drop and the need for clarification just to be sure I had said what I said.

I find that I am so much more vocal to those around me about my lifestyle choice, especially to servers when asking what I might drink that could be special. If I want there to be non-boozy choices than I have to ask to create the demand for non-boozy choices. It seems that it gets easier for me to let people know because after all these days strung together, I know what to expect. Shocked silence or a “good for you” when what is really meant is WTF? And that is okay. It is a great tradeoff – social oddity in some settings while enjoying every single next morning hangover free. No brainer. At this stage for my own wellness, I am finding the need to voice my choice more often. What began as a shaky, shy “I don’t drink” becomes stronger and more confident (and proud) each time I assert my lifestyle choice. I feel that if I want this choice to be normal, people need to see that rarely sighted animal in the flesh: the non-drinker. Rebel Wellness – going against the grain since 2014 or so…

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Published by: shineshine100

I am a 50 year old woman who is trying to live her best one and only life by putting down the wine glass and moving forward. I am a wife. I am a mom of three university aged kids. I am an educator. When not wasting time sipping poison I love to hike, garden, paddleboard, read, ski, cook, and do yoga.

Categories Uncategorized7 Comments

7 thoughts on “Rebel Wellness”

  1. I love the idea of rebel wellness. I am quite vocal about my own sobriety. Someone today said, you must have an occasional glass of wine….and I just laughed and said no. Iā€™m sober. 4 years. No booze. And I love it. My life is great.

    I sometimes shake my head. No one would encourage a heroin addict to have a little bit now and then…

    Whatever. We know the score!

    Anne

    1. I am now 47 (January has a lot going on!) and I am now on my 4th day without any alcohol. I just said to myself (quietly) on Sunday: I AM STOPPING. I stopped. Full stop. Like that. I knew why, I had thought about it, it suddenly repulsed me to think I have been drinking this poison that seems to be fighting my body and my mind.

      I have already begun sleeping better, feeling better and not as anxious. I was having problems digesting my food even after one pint, one glass of wine, etc. As a vegan, I couldn’t really “get” why I was feeling so lousy. I suddenly woke up from my haze and realised that these little glasses of this and that were adding up and dragging me down.

      The sad thing is, I told very few people that “know me” and one reply was: “well, never say never, you deserve to treat yourself every now and then” (WTF!?—-treat??) ((How about treating myself to a walk or a good book to read?)) and the other person completely snubbed my announcement of going sober. Snubbed= ignored. ONE person who has already been on this journey, thankfully gave me the power of positive reassurance that I was not a freak by giving up drinking and I will always remember that.
      Reading blogs like yours just gives me the power to hold my head high and say: I don’t drink. Thank you.

      1. Hello Nikki,
        Good for you for knowing yourself and what your body and soul need. I have found that whenever people find out that I choose not to drink, I immediately become a mirror on their own drinking behaviour whether I want to be or not. And because of the stigma around NOT ingesting a poison, many stay silent and so we all think that we all drink and that we’re all having a great time doing it. To go against the drinking culture takes a strong person who puts her own health and well-being first. It gets so much easier with time and I have also made my deepest friendships when I have been strong enough and vulnerable enough to say, “I don’t drink…” Well done. Know that every cell in your body is throwing a huge gratitude party for your decision! I have NEVER been healthier in my life. Much love…

  2. It’s so funny that the guy couldn’t work out a way to send something that didn’t involve alcohol – there are loads of options and I can’t understand why it’s such a huge mental block for some people.

    I love your concept of rebel wellness, that’s awesome. I’m not quite at the stage where I’m verbal about my choices other than with close friends but I’ve had a few moments where I’ve been tempted but have kept my mouth shut, for now. Good on you for being loud and proud, it’s a great way to chip away at the stigma surrounding addiction. Take care, be well šŸ™‚

    1. There are so many options out there and I know that when I make our vacation rental property ready for renters I like to leave a basket with goodies. And even I have thought “they will only want wine…” which I refuse to supply. So I place chocolate and popcorn and bubbly water in the basket… It has taken me this long to begin to get vocal and be comfortable about it. I really want the stigma of gone so that people don’t suffer in silence for so long thinking they are the “only ones” – but for my own journey this has taken a long, long time to get here and I am okay with that. Thanks for your thoughts… Peace

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