Kim’s story: Looking back at five months sober
Five months ago, Kim quit the booze and hung up her chemical suit. The other day, she was looking back at a blog she wrote in her third alcohol-free month, when she was frustrated that benefits were becoming less obvious. Turns out that since then, she has completely changed her mindset and began to enjoy her journey for the first time. Moral of the story: when the going gets tough, the tough gets going! There will be days where its hard or you regret the changes you’ve made, but Kim shows that they are well worth sticking to. Here, we show her original blog and how she would reply to it now.
Sorry for the rant, but I am feeling cheated if I am honest. I am now halfway through my third month alcohol-free and just want to know – WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS?
I can understand the things that aren’t happening due to not getting sloshed up every night (no hangovers, random puking, breasticle exposure, bla bla bla), but what am I actually gaining?
- Drinks. Herbal teas, I HATE YOU. I smell your boxes in Sainsbury’s that promise to deliver an amazing taste sensation of herbs, fruits and other stuff. I dunk you in my mug and end up with an insipid mug of pond water. I DON’T LIKE YOU AND YOU DON’T REPLACE WINE.
- Money. I am not better off at all. I’ve spend all the money I saved on stuff for my disco bath, which keeps me on the straight and narrow each night. Lasers, glow balls, glow cubes, glow eggs – if it glows or flashes it’s in my bathroom. I also went on a holiday which ended being terrible. I have not a penny more to my name.
- Friends. I am moving further and further away from my all of my friends who drink in the same way I used to. Nights with them bore me now, and I am always the first to leave. Friends, why don’t I like you now I’m sober?
- Weight. I’ve hardly lost anything. Each day I check for lady garden visibility and still I can’t see it when I sit down. Why is grooming “down there” still a bloody act of body contortion? I get that I’ve troffed a few cheesecakes along the way, but I should still be thinner, shouldn’t I?
- Experiences. So giving up booze opens you up to new life experiences, does it? Well I just went to Venice, and I am sorry, it was rubbish. I renamed St Mark’s Square “boring square” and spend the whole time walking around dragging my feet like a sulky teenager. What experience am I going to enjoy more than a night on the lash with my mates?
- Sex. When I was pissed, I thought I looked ace. I was a goddess of love, I would swing from the chandelier or anything else I could find and have an ace time. Now I’ve gone to “oooh don’t look at me, oooh I’m shy, ooh I’ve got belly hang, GET YOUR FRIGGING DIRTY HANDS OFF ME” in the space of three months.
- Health. I feel crap! Constant headaches and dizziness. I’m currently in bed in my bobble hat, head pounding, yet another day off work. I thought it was from an infection from an infection, but it has been months now and I can’t bear much more. I’m NOT jumping out of bed each day, I don’t have more energy. I look and feel like Jabba the Hutt – on a bad day.
So… I am not going to give up giving up. I am a stubborn old Jabba, but if anyone can remind me what the upside of all this is, I would honestly truly be eternally grateful. WHAT AM I MISSING?
2 months later…
The other day I was reading through my old blogs and found one and thought: “oh you poor cow, if only you knew how good it would get”. At the time, I had read about how great things would be and thought “yeah right, you aren’t me, you don’t have my fabulous wild life, you don’t have my ace mates and great nights out, what the f+ck do you know”… but it seems like, actually, you knew a lot. So, five months in – I would like to address the points the poor old cow made back then.
I gave up the rancid vile lying herbal teas – I have discovered the joy of juice, caffeine free coffees, Becks Blue, and something called water – which is not in frozen cube form nor mixed with a spirit. It’s actually nice! And mocktails, ooh I do love a good ol’ mocktail.
Nope, still not better off. Why would I be? I’m spending money on other stuff now, better stuff. I have a cleaner (I even got a cleaner for my cleaner as she is crap but she leaves me Russian chocolates so I can’t fire her), and I eat out at least 4 times a week. I go to the theatre and the cinema (late night shows dontcha know, and I don’t fall asleep or need a wee every second, and I remember it). I have a pimped up disco bath, with lasers galore. I have massages and my kids get treated. I go on weekend trips, I have new bedding, and I have nice things that bring me comfort.
I tried to keep things the same, and I didn’t ask them to change. I worked out I had a two hour time frame with them each time we met before they got too drunk and bored me with their repetitions and drunk up emotions. And we tried, we did. But here’s the thing. On Monday it was my fifth month soberversary, so I asked my mates to meet me for lunch. I was buzzing. They asked me to wait in a gay pub in Soho for them, so there I sat impatiently tapping my feet, checking my phone, looking like a knob whilst the sun was shining down outside….waiting…. and they were an hour late. They turned up pissed. They then took the piss out of me not drinking/smoking/drinking coffee. I was gutted and really sad. However I’ve met other people now, I have way more friends, people who get me. People from here I can text, call, email and most importantly meet. And outside of here I am making new friends too. I am attracting people and they are the right kind of people for the me now, and it’s just brilliant.
Well blow me down – literally! I have lost 1 and a half stone. I’ve gone from a puffy, unhealthy size 14 with a moonface to healthy size 10 with a moonface. Grooming “down there” now possible with the aid of my flatmates beard trimmer as I can bend in the middle better now. It’s great.
So many experiences – mini-breaks, catching up with long lost friends and family, long disco charged walks, subtle but enjoyable AF experiences. This weekend I will be packing my bags and buggering off up north, without anyone! I used to be surrounded by peeps, but I am staying in a little village, on my own, for a few days to walk, ride a bike, probably get lost, eat too much and meet new people. And to finish it off with be meeting some lovely sober chicks on the last day. And I can’t wait!
Not properly tried and tested yet, but I’m ready for action and not worried at all. 33 year old AF guitar man on standby if I do want to hop on but its not a huge priority right now.
I dip in now and again instead of the big overwhelming gorge-fest at the beginning. This works better for me. I have learnt so much without force-feeding myself on a daily basis. I take what I need when I need it.
Apart from the dizziness which has not left, I have more energy and I also sleep so much better at night! Mornings and I are getting on better these days. I don’t hate them, I wouldn’t say we are best mates, but we are working on our relationship.
I’m so so so glad I didn’t give up giving up. I’ve gone through the anger, the boredom, the stamping feet sulkiness, the negotiations – and I’m sure I’ve got masses more to go, as it’s still early days. I do still think of booze every day, but not so much in a wanting way. Sometimes I do think, “oh dear god, this is it for GOOD” – and then I get real – and I’m so glad it’s for good.