6 weeks ago I wrote THIS post about how I was going to give up alcohol indefinitely, and at the very least, give up getting tres boozey on a weekend, so I can lead a less hungover, healthier and ultimately more productive life. Well, throughout that time I have begun to enjoy the benefits of this positive lifestyle change, and also the disappointment that saying ‘so-long’ to the Sauvignon doesn’t always equal feeling instantly amazing (although this might have something to do with our children’s LACK OF SLEEP lately).
Here is how I’m feeling several weeks in…
I am certainly feeling SO much better in this area! Now that I’m not suffering from the weekly (or more often) fuzzy head, I am much less grumpier, and therefore suffer much less guilt that I am not giving the children the attention that they crave and deserve on these wasted days. I am definitely more ‘on-the-ball’, and getting more done, be it with Freddie and Sasha, house-wise, blog-wise, business-wise. I really feel like I have gained a whole extra day every week, and my previously ‘hungover’ time is no longer spent counting down the hours to bedtime! I don’t have the guilt that I’ve spanked a day away when I could be doing something useful.
One of my other main reasons for giving up boozey nights, was that I was starting to get really anxious the day after (this one is really hard to explain!), and I haven’t felt like this at all. So mentally, yes, I am feeling stronger already. I no longer have any uneasy feelings about what I might have said or done the night before, and I know that I have much more clarity in what I am feeling/thinking/saying, which in turn makes me feel more confident, decisive, and hopefully a better person to be around.
Possibly my biggest disappointment here, but it is still early days and I need to remember that! Whilst I am not overweight, I think I was secretly hoping to lose a few ‘booze pounds’, but sadly this hasn’t happened yet, probably because for the moment I have replaced wine with tea and too much cake! I will be cutting right down on unhealthy treats now I’m back from holiday, although I still think a bit of cake every now and again isn’t going to do me harm. Especially in comparison with when you end up eating the entire contents of your fridge the morning after the night before! I think my skin is looking a little better, and my face isn’t as puffy. When I look in the mirror san-makeup (not always the prettiest of sights!), my skin is a lot more ‘glowy’ pre-putting my BB cream on, and I’m sure this must be to do with the lack of booze. The whites of my eyes also look a lot more sparkly – #bonus.
I am a bit annoyed that I still don’t have loads of energy, but I’m sure this is to do with the fact the kids have been waking in the night again (“I need a WEEEEEEEEEEEE” shouted at you at 3am from an adjoining bedroom is no one’s friend), and also starting their day at 5.30am. I was so tired the other Saturday, using the TV as a crutch and counting down the hours until they slept, that I thought to myself that I may as well have been hungover. Which is rubbish, and you don’t even get the wine-infused fun-times from the night before to make it easier.
Which brings me to…
I still can’t decide how I feel about this one, although I’m realising that it is often the company and the situation that makes a great night out, as opposed to any sauce consumed. Whilst I never think anyone is ‘boring’ if they don’t drink, I wonder if I myself, may have become a bit of a party-pooper, as I seem to be less up for going out generally. And whilst I don’t miss all the crap and potential hazards that come from a big, boozey night out (dodgy cab rides, sprained ankles, remembering where you live etc), I do miss the anticipation of one. The messaging and chatting to friends during the day, how buzzing you feel on the way to the pub on a Friday night, those first fuzzy glasses of wine whilst you catch up on gossip and put the world to rights… I am missing that. I’ve still been out a fair bit- dinners, the theatre and lunches, which have been ace, and I’m always glad once I’m home and tucked up in bed by midnight, but I’m hoping I can become a bit more of a tee-total party animal. Adam and I went to a lovely wedding reception the other week, and it was in a great venue with friendly people, but by 9.30pm I was clock-watching as everyone else got more pissed, and by 9.45pm I was en-route home to relieve my Mum from babysitting, whilst I was happy for Adam to stay on partying. I may be saving a shed-load of money not drinking, but I would like to up for some later partying too!
So…overall I am still feeling pretty good about my sobriety decision so far, and I am 100% benefiting from it. I guess like any big life changes it will take some getting used to.
I am looking forward to attending Blogfest this weekend with clear eyes and the ability to remember conversations with other people!
Have you done ‘Sober October’, or have you stopped drinking too? How did you find it/ how are you finding it?
I don’t drink at all and I decided to stop about 4 years ago. I honestly can’t remember the exact date and I didn’t have one particular reason; I suppose there were lots of factors. I think it helps that my husband doesn’t really drink either and I don’t really socialise because I prefer not to go out now that I have Gwenn. I had a glass of champagne the day after my wedding, some Buck’s Fizz at my friend’s wedding, a bottle of cider at a hen party – I’m not teetotal, I’m just not fussed about alcohol at all. Chocolate on the other hand … 😉 x
Ah, yes, chocolate! I’m happy to replace wine with this though! 😉 I envy the fact that you’re not fussed about booze. It just seems something so ingrained in mine, and my friend’s lives since I was about 14, it has definitely been tricky to un-programme all those years of thinking/behaving a certain way. It does help though that whilst Adam likes a drink with friends, our relationship hasn’t been based around booze, nor does he go out on the lash with mates every weekend, especially not so much since we had the kids- It’s me who was always the party animal! x
I also have stopped the drink and fag’s might I add, as I to was feeling the anxiety of it all following the days from too much drink. But also I was starting to black out completely, not remembering half the night which worried me as I think god knows what I might of been upto. I have felt alot better in myself my skin is clearing up as I had mass break out of the dreaded spots also I feel more creative, I felt the drink and fag’s dulled out alot of what I used to enjoy.Yeah ok watching people get plastered is not fun and makes you think “oh one won’t hurt” but realistically it will, I just think of the anxiety and crap I will suffer the next day or days should I say as I started to learn my body took longer to heal after a boozy night, which also made me think of the damage it was doing to me and my health. I am hoping to stay of the drink for the forseable future as I don’t really enjoy it that much really. Having more energy when it comes to Sundays is a plus and the kids are happier aswell. Good luck with yours lovey xxx
Thanks so much for your comment Suzy, it’s so nice to here that it’s not just me who feels like this! I’ve felt so much more creative too since stopping/cutting down, and the more I do, the more I don’t have time for for getting tanked up. It’s so much easier to deal with children without a hangover, and you’re right, they are happier. How you dealt with 5 and a hangover is beyond me, haha! Good luck to you too with staying sober and happy xxx
Every child deserves a sober parent. They’re exclusively with us for such a short period of time, why give up any of those precious 18 or so years to king alcohol! Unfortunately, I did, and it is the biggest regret that I carry to this day.
I drank for 30 years, the last ten as an alcoholic. Yet, I too wanted to feel “instantly amazing” the moment I quit. Ha! But that’s classic alcoholism. All I had done was stop drinking. Not to trivialize surviving addiction, but that is just the start.
As a friend of mine often says “if you’re new to sobriety, it gets worse”. Alcohol is but a symptom. Addressing the cause is when we put on our big girl/boy pants. However, The benefits of commencing that work are life changing and simply amazing.
Good luck to you and the opportunity you have to be present daily in the life of your children.
I’m glad you’re feeling better overall, and congrats on making it through the first six weeks. Weddings are hard work sober, so i’m not surprised in the slightest that you left early. Hopefully the kids will start sleeping and you’ll see your energy levels soar 🙂
What you’ve said about becoming a bit of a party pooper has really resonated with me. The opening sentence of my first blog post went something like this “I often wonder when I went from being the life and soul of the party to a person only invited to make the numbers up” Says it all really…
Good luck for BlogFest lovely, it’ll be tough but stay strong xxx
Thanks lovely, I’ve been okay but do feel a tad dull right now, really need to get my mojo back! I think the children not sleeping well is making me really tired, and where as I’d use booze to mask that and keep going and party, now I just want to go to bed. Blogfest on Saturday was a case in point, gah 🙁 Went home afterwards as was so tired, instead of partying with everyone else, booo! Never mind, I still had a great time though xx
Great post, I stopped drinking about a year ago but I slipped while on a night on, for the next 2 or 3 days I could for the first time ever in my life feel the tiredness/lethargy that I had been so used to accepting prior to stopping drinking. The next day felt horrendous. Anyway I am glad I did it as it put me back on track. Thanks for sharing, Im off to make a green tea:)