Monday, December 29, 2014

Just Keep Swimming

Well I've survived Christmas...sober!  It was a great holiday this year.  I had small urges now and then but overall it was fairly easy.  Only once did someone directly offer me a drink because he forgot that I wasn't drinking.

Then I survived my husband's birthday at the wine and cheese restaurant.  This was also not too difficult.  We went early in the day with our kids.  Of course being at a wine bar I did have a desire to order a glass of wine but it quickly passed.  It was a good day as well.

Mr. TMSN's birthday dinner.  Don't worry, it's not my wine :)

Then yesterday I made it through yet another test.  A professional football game!  Of course professional sporting events are big drinking events in general, but we were sitting in a suite with a full bar, bartender and unlimited free alcohol!  

My son and I wearing our new FREE shirts!
The game was the most difficult.  I drank tea and I was fine, but I definitely felt a little flat.  I had thoughts of wanting to be able to drink normally.  I wanted to have a drink to feel less socially awkward.  I'm glad it was cold because it made the tea more enjoyable!

The bottom line is that I continue to live my life as a sober person.  There are ups and downs.  I am gaining more confidence with each hurdle.

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Merry Christmas!

I can't believe it's Christmas Eve!  When you're a kid it takes so long for Christmas to arrive and as an adult time moves so quickly.  My main complaint is that we've had very little snow so far this year.  It is suppose to snow tomorrow on Christmas day, looking forward to that.

Christmas Eve has always been a heavy drinking day for me.  I would always play the moderation game, sometimes with more success than others.  Always some degree of hangover on Christmas morning.  Not this year!  Looking forward to being fully present this time.

If you are reading this, I hope you have a wonderful holiday!

Sunday, December 21, 2014

The Pink Cloud

Yesterday, I was enjoying my typical Saturday morning routine of drinking coffee and reading sober blogs.  I was reading another blogger talking about the pink clouds of sobriety and I looked outside my window to find my very own literal pink cloud.  After I snapped this picture, my son woke up and suggested I put on some Christmas music.

All of this happened as I was freezing because our furnace stopped working the night before (Friday) and the repairman couldn't get here Saturday.  When things like this happen I tend to get hugely overwhelmed, stressed, anxious, upset.  I really needed this "pink cloud moment" and it seemed to be created just when I needed it.  A reminder that everything will be OK and to stop and enjoy a content moment in the midst of chaos.

Turns out the furnace was an easy fix.  One tripped switch reset and all was well.  And I was SO stressed out.  Maybe I need to learn to wait and see if there is anything to be upset about before I get so worked up!

Last night I told my dad and step-mom that I've quit drinking as they shared a bottle of wine with my husband.  "We only need 3 glasses," I told the waiter.  It was a relief to tell them before Christmas day as now the pressure is off.  My step-mom said "good for you," and my dad asked me if I was feeling better.  I said I was sleeping much better and we had a good discussion about that. Seems he often wakes in the middle of the night and he wondered if he'd sleep better without alcohol.  "Yes," I said "you would definitely sleep better."

Friday, December 19, 2014

It's the Most Wonderful (trigger-filled) Time of the Year!

Now that my kids are officially on winter break and we will have a couple of weeks off of our regularly scheduled evening activities I find myself in the beginning of what's normally my heaviest drinking time of the year.  In the past, I wouldn't even contemplate not drinking during this time of the year. Sure, I've tried dry January before.  That is much easier for me because it seems everyone is much more health conscious in January.  But during the way, not me.

Except it is me now.  

I've spent the last couple of weeks relatively free of thoughts of alcohol.  This has been in part due to my obsession with a certain podcast that ended yesterday.  Then last night I was having those romantic thoughts of wine for the first time in a while.  You know what I'm talking about, right?  The sound of the the wine pouring in the glass, the way the glass feels in your hand, the instant "happy" feeling.  Also mixed in were thoughts of how unfair it is that I can't "drink like a normal person."

I've gotten much better though at "thinking through the drink."  Yes, it might feel good for maybe an hour at the most, but then what happens?  Well, I'd finish the bottle (maybe more), sleep like shit, feel terrible physically and mentally the next day, have foggy memories of the night before, not be present for my kids, etc.  

This year is different.  I'm confident I can make it through the next couple of weeks without drinking, but not so confident that I wont miss it.

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Dream a Little Dream

Another drinking dream last night.  Basically the dream was about me waking up after a night of drinking and realization of what I'd done.  It was a very vivid dream, the emotions were so real.  

In the dream, I was lying in bed after waking up and after a brief moment the realization hit me that I had gotten very drunk the night before.  I could not believe it.  Everything that I'd worked so hard for was down the drain.  I was crying hysterically.  Wanting so badly for it to not be true.  Not wanting to start counting days from DAY 1 again.  

Thank goodness it was only a dream!

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Master of What? (and 60 days!)

Today is day 60!  That does seem like reason to be proud.  I do not go to AA but I have to admit I wouldn't mind getting a shinny coin and applause for some of these milestones.  

A post on A Hangover Free Life got me thinking the other day.  It seems a bit ironic that I was a psychology major in college and I have a Master's Degree with a focus on school counseling.  It's been nearly 20 years since I have looked at most of these books.  I was a school counselor for a couple of years and then decided to stay home with my kids. 

Of course I know that even if I was a marriage therapist I would not be able to fix my own marriage.  And if I was an addiction specialist I would not be able to fix my own problems with addiction.

I had a long talk with my mom yesterday.  She and my dad got separated when I was in fourth grade.  I shared with her some of what I've been going through in my marriage and was surprised to hear that she felt exactly the same way I am feeling now when she was married to my dad.  The similarities were very interesting.  She feels strongly that I should see a therapist.  I don't disagree, but am resistant because I know it will be difficult.

She also said something else that stood out to me.  It was along the lines of "the grass is not always greener on the other side."  In other words, perhaps I would not be happier after divorce.  Maybe I need to be happy with myself first.

Monday, December 15, 2014

Let's Get Real

Time for some real stuff, the hard shit.  

My marriage is not fantastic.  In fact it's pretty much the opposite of fantastic.  I was originally thinking I'd just not focus on that in my writing here on my blog.  I don't plan to give too much detail or give too much attention to it but of course it is a huge part of my life and related in at least some way to my drinking.

Had quite a long discussion with my husband yesterday.  Neither of us is happy, in fact he is "miserable".  I'm not confident that my marriage will survive for the long term or that either of us wants it to.  Which basically leaves us in a big huge mess.

His main issue with me is that I am very controlling, which I don't dispute.  Basically he feels as if he is walking on eggshells.  If he does the dishes I get mad that he is not doing them right, if he doesn't do the dishes then I get mad that he is not helping.  Or when I ask him for his opinion I get mad that he won't tell me what he really thinks but he is scared to tell me what he really thinks because I'll be upset that he doesn't agree.  That type of stuff.  

In addition, I can just plain be a big fat bitch (that's my word, not his).  Again...I don't dispute that.

He also brought up the fact that we have been fighting in front of the kids.  Even when we are not fighting, we are certainly not modeling a healthy relationship. true!  Ouch, the truth hurts!

Of course this is a very simplistic description of a huge problem.  Years and years of life has led us to where we are now.  There's no point in airing out all of my dirty laundry here, but I think perhaps acknowledging the problem can be helpful.

I think it was in Jason Vale's book that he said that if your car is broken down and you drink a bottle of wine you will still need a mechanic.  So if my marriage sucks, drinking wine will do nothing to fix it (although it was a nice escape).

Ok, now I feel vulnerable!

Thursday, December 11, 2014


According to, an obsession is:

an idea or thought that continually preoccupies or intrudes on a person's mind.

There are lots of things I am obsessed with. My phone, candy crush, coffee, TV, drinking, being sober. In fact it was just over a week ago that I wrote about me new preoccupation with the online sober world.

Well I have another new obsession (see any patterns?). I apologize as this is a little off topic but it is so much on my mind that I feel I must write about it. It's a podcast called Serial. It's become quite popular, from the makers of This American Life. It's a real life murder mystery. I'd heard about it from a friend at the gym who desperately needed someone to talk to about it and went home and listened to the first episode and the rest is history. From last Friday evening until Sunday morning I caught up on all episodes. Then in the next couple of days I listened to them all again. Then I found another podcast which talks about the podcast and listened to all episodes of that. Then I found blogs and websites that discuss the podcast and spent all day yesterday reading and listening. Then last night I had to make myself stop. I shut the computer (gasp) and put my phone in another room to give my mind a little rest!

A couple of observations as this relates to sobriety. 1. I have literally been so enthralled with Serial that I have not had time to obsess or even think about wine or being sober. Of course I am sober but I haven't been thinking about it. 2. Before I got sober a couple of months ago I was not a regular listener of podcasts (of any kind) or reader of blogs (of any kind). Then I was introduced to sober blogs and podcasts and now I'm obsessed with a different podcast and related blogs. Coincidence?

Of course I'd love to hear from you if you happen to be listening to Serial. I'd also like to recommend it, but knowing that you may have addictive tendencies (as I do) warned. Highly addictive!

Tuesday, December 9, 2014


So we've established that I have a problem, well lots of them!  So far I'm doing things different this time as far as sobriety goes.  I'm blogging, listening to podcasts, reading blogs, commenting on blogs.  I've joined the BFB.  I really do think I'm off to a good start.  In doing all of these things, something I've run across is the idea of meditation.  I've seen Tara Brach's name mentioned in more than one place.  The first time I saw it I ignored it without a second thought.  Then I saw it again and I thought that maybe I should investigate a bit.  I mean the idea is that I'm trying new things, right?

So I searched around a bit on the web, downloaded some podcasts of hers as well as a couple of others (Meditation Oasis).  I can tell you that I don't know the first thing about meditation but listening to these calming voices has proven truly relaxing.  Maybe I'm on to something here?

Sunday, December 7, 2014

Let's Meet for a Drink

At the gym this morning I saw a former coworker who I remain friends with but don't see very often.  We chatted for a few minutes and she said "after the new year we should get together for a drink."  I smiled and said "that would be great."  I really do think it would be great to get together with her and catch up, but my mind also had a minute of panic just then.  Not panic that I wouldn't be able to successfully meet for drinks without drinking alcohol but panic because I wasn't sure if I should tell her at that moment that I'd quit drinking.  I was afraid she'd feel let down or that it wouldn't be as much fun to make plans.  In situations like this it is always a bit strange for me.  I mean, who knows if we will actually get together, at least any time soon.  Also I felt if I mentioned it I would feel obligated to get into a discussion about why I've quit.  So for today I decided to just let it go without mention and I'll cross that bridge when I get to it.

On an earlier blog post I made a list of celebrities who don't drink because I am a bit fascinated by this.  Here's a picture to go with one of those names (you're welcome!)

Friday, December 5, 2014

Day 48 ~ It's a Mental Game

Day 48 is significant to me because the last time I "quit drinking", I drank on day 48.  I will not drink today.

Here's a brief recap of what happened last time. 

May 2014 

Day 0.  It was a Sunday, for no apparent reason I started drinking wine early and fast.  By the middle of the afternoon I had vomited and passed out.

Day 1.  Really bad hangover.  Guilt.  Shame.  The usual "I'm never drinking again."  But I felt pretty serious this time. 

Days 2-47.  I was feeling good, I was doing it.

July 2014

Day 48.  I went on vacation.  Wolfie was there although at the time I still had never heard it called that.  He said lots of things to me that day:

"You are on vacation, you can't have fun without drinking"
"You have made it for so long, you deserve a reward (wine)"
"Let's see how it goes, if a drinking opportunity presents itself and you want to drink you can"
"Everyone else on this trip will be drinking"
"You love wine"
"You need wine"
"You know you want to"
"You have never succeeded in quitting before"
"You aren't quitting forever so why not drink today"
I really did think long and hard about it.  I did not want to reset the counter on my phone to day 1.  I feel like my "let's see what happens" attitude was the reason for my ultimate decision to drink.  I am hoping the next time I go on vacation I will have a different outlook from the beginning.  I will know that I'm not going to drink and that there is no reason to have this crazy conversation in my head. 

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Blogs, Blogs and More Blogs

This just in:

I seem to have replaced my obsession with wine with an obsession with sober blogs.  I've recently found a few more that I really like and have added them here on my page.  Makes it much easier for me to find them, see when new posts have been added and share them with anyone who might be reading this.  There are SO MANY out there, I'll never get to them all.

Speaking of people who might be reading this, I'm up to 1248 pageviews (yes quite a few of them are from me clicking on my own blog!)  It's a relatively small number I'm sure but to me it's huge considering a month ago I wasn't sure I wanted anyone to see it.  Now I get so excited with each new pageview and especially when someone comments (yes, I'm talking to you!)  I'm also up to 10 countries and I can't help but wonder if someone in Palestine, Venezuela or Japan is actually reading this and interested or stumbled upon it by mistake?

It took a while to get comfortable but now I am often commenting on other blogs.  Hopefully people won't get sick of me!  I've a had a couple of people who have left just one comment and I'm left wondering if they've been back?  Are they still sober?

When I am falling asleep at night I think about future posts I want to make.  When I have a thought/feeling/experience I imaging writing about it and what I would say. 

Of course the best part is reading someone else's words and feeling like I could have written them myself and this happens on a daily basis!

So is this a healthy obsession?  I certainly think that connecting with others is helpful. I do however feel a strong need for people to like me. I certainly don't want to get wrapped up in feeling self-worth based upon how many hits or comments I get.  I'm sure like all things balance is key. 

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Isn't it Ironic?

Yes that's a song by Alanis Morisette, maybe you're humming it now as I am. 

I'll tell you what's ironic.  Being upset about something when it doesn't happen and then being upset when it does!

Here's the example:

A couple weekends ago I came home from the gym to find my husband cleaning the house (gasp!)  I was immediately a hot mess.  I was anxious/angry/apologetic.  Not the reaction one would expect.  Why, you ask?  Well I am usually the one who does the cleaning, so I felt that if I had cleaned the house as I should have he would have no need to clean.  Also I have a certain way of doing things and perhaps he was doing it wrong.  The ironic part is usually I sulk around the house upset because no one does anything to help me!

Belle has talked about this on her blog and podcasts and it sure rings true for me.  Who would want to help someone who acts like this?

On another note, here's a short clip from Dr. Phil about his decision not to drink.  I love Dr. Phil and find this quite interesting. 

Speaking of Dr. Phil...last week he had a guest on his show who was drinking hand sanitizer all day long to get drunk.  It was quite scary and moving.