When I look back on pictures, I can see clearly how alcohol is poison.
The bloat in my face is painful to see.
The bloat was my body's way of trying to protect me from my drinking habits.
As a drinker, it was just another reason for me to hate my ugly self.
I was ignoring myself, in every way.
I did not pay attention.
I numbed out everything that was happening to me, so I could just keep drinking.
I started drinking in my early teens.
I never had a chance to fully develop without it.
I didn’t learn healthy coping skills.
I didn’t know how to regulate my emotions.
Alcohol was always there to soothe me.
I thought it was fun.
I thought it was what made me fun.
I thought other people liked the funny, fun, party girl, who I was, with a drink in my hand.
I have written about my sober vacations before.
You can read my other vacation blogs here:
Today, I want to share my most recent experience, Spring Break 2021 in Florida.
We spent time in Naples with my sister in law and her young family.
We also had our 3 best friends and their families from our neighborhood,
spending time in the same area.
We ended our trip in Fort Lauderdale with just the four of us.
Needless to say, we had a blast.
My husband had golf buddies, my kids had a group of teenagers to hang out with, and I had a Spa Day and Ladies Night with my Card Club.
We were on a pontoon boat during the day and a catamaran cruise at sunset.
We had the best food around the biggest tables.
We relaxed at the pool and at the beach.
We explored the ritzy areas, the historical areas, and the late night hot spots....
Spring Break, Man.
On my 21st birthday (also my golden birthday), I got a tattoo and headed to Panama City Beach for a week in the sun with my friends.
Finally legal to drink alcohol!
I watched frat boys drink so much that they dug a hole in the sand to puke in and then cover it up and drink some more.
Even as a party girl myself, I felt sad watching this.
I wondered what their mothers’ would think and it seemed dangerous.
Spring Break has always been a thing for me.
On my first sober Spring Break 3 years ago, my husband and I sat there at the pool listening to Jimmy Buffet and staring at each other.
What in the hell were we going to do?
How was this going to be fun?
Who does this?
Who stays sober on Spring Break?
It seemed awkward, uncomfortable, and even painful at the time.
If that’s where you are at, this is for you!
Flash forward to today, 3 years sober, and many vacations in.
I just returned from a long weekend away and I am...
What do you do on the weekends when you are sober?
Isn’t it boring?
It’s relaxing, productive, and fulfilling.
I had no idea how to spend my time when I first quit drinking.
I was antsy, irritated, and annoyed.
Alcohol had removed my ability to find pleasure in anything but alcohol.
For the first time in a long time, this weekend I had few plans and obligations.
I thought this would be a perfect example of what a “normal” weekend looks like.
Saturday I woke up early and had coffee with my husband,
in our quiet living room, while the kids sleep in.
I welcome the spring sun and the bird song, in the morning these days.
I had gotten in a habit of sleeping in during the dark, winter season.
I prefer an earlier rising, so I am happy to wake up early without an alarm, even on a weekend.
It starts my day off right.
I welcome the day, instead of curse the day, because (Hallelujah!) I am not hungover.
I love St. Paddy’s Day!
Leprechauns and rainbows.
Parades and debauchery.
Irish music, Irish dancers, and Irish pubs.
Corned beef and cabbage.
I am all into the festivities.
I used to, of course, love green beer too.
I loved the excuse for daytime drinking, on a chilly but sunny, almost Spring afternoon, in the midwest.
I no longer love green beer, rude drunken folks in a bar, getting spilled on, or the darkness of a pub on a sunny day, but I still love St. Paddy’s Day.
Here are a few ideas for what to drink when you don’t drink green beer.
You can enjoy “green” drinks and skip the hangover, drunken antics, and shame.
If beer is your beverage of choice, Gruvi Stout will give you a Guiness like feel. It’s dark and bold with a chocolate malt and tastes of coffee. If dark beer is not your thing, then Gruvi IPA might be the gold at the end of the rainbow for you! The can is green so...
When I first quit drinking I wanted everything in my life to stay exactly the same. The only difference would be that I was no longer drinking. I didn’t want anyone to know if I was drinking or not drinking, and I definitely didn’t want it to be the topic of conversation. I feared my relationships would change, or that others would feel uncomfortable around me. I wanted to go on living my life, only somehow secretly not drinking alcohol.
Now, at 3-years sober, I realize how that was both unrealistic, and not in my best interest.
Looking back it doesn’t surprise me that I had all of these expectations. I had set myself up to live an unliveable life in many ways. I wanted to go unnoticed and keep everyone around me happy at all times. I also never wanted to feel anything. If I started having an intense feeling, I would get disappointed in myself. It was easier to pretend it didn’t exist. Whatever the feeling was, it had to be wrong, and it was my...
So you’ve decided to give up alcohol for Lent.
This is one of the healthiest things you can do.
Because you have chosen alcohol, I assume there may be some challenges in letting go of this vice. It is afterall representing a sacrifice.
Maybe you are #sobercurious, on a health journey, looking to lose weight, get better sleep, or evaluating your relationship with alcohol.
Perhaps alcohol has become a staple in your daily routine since the pandemic hit and it secretly scares you how much you have come to rely on it.
Maybe you see it’s hurting you more than it’s helping you.
Regardless, I am glad you are here, taking a break from booze.
I am now 3 year sober, but I started with an alcohol free experiment myself. My goal was to be alcohol free for 100 Days. I made it to 70 Days and felt confident my overindulgence was cured. I did alcohol free challenges and experiments for 3 years before I decided to give it up for good.
The world is full of bad news involving alcohol.
In my feed from just today:
If there was any question, after last night’s Super Bowl win, Tom Brady solidified his position at GOAT. He has worked hard to earn and keep this title.
He has dedicated his life to playing football and winning Super Bowls.
He is committed to a lifestyle that allows for super human performance.
He goes to bed by 9 pm every night and allows for 9 hours of sleep.
He keeps a rigorous fitness and nutritious diet routine.
He avoids alcohol, caffeine, sugar, and late night snacks.
Some people think this is sad.
That he is missing out on partying, junk food, and perhaps living a narrow life.
I think I would have thought that too when I was drinking.
As a drinker, I thought a good time was the opportunity to drink as much as I wanted.
I considered limitless alcohol consumption to be freedom, celebration, and rebellion.
Now, I see alcohol as the lock, on the cage of dependence, I was in.
As a sober person, my value system has changed.
Many Americans have been drinking more since the coronavirus pandemic.
American adults say they're drinking 14% more often during the coronavirus pandemic, according to a report in the journal JAMA Network Open. The increase in frequency of drinking for women was more pronounced, up 17% compared to last year.
Instances of heavy drinking among women, which for women was defined as four or more drinks within a couple of hours, spiked by 41%.
We know it is not a healthy choice, but disassociate from the idea that it negatively affects the body’s immune system. Weakening our defense against the exact virus we are trying to avoid.
We are coping with our stress, fear, and boredom with alcohol.
At first it felt like just playing hooky, not going into the office and hunkering down at home. Making the best of the situation by Zoom Happy Hours and Quarantini’s.
Social connection and a sense of humor go a long way towards a healthy state of being and I commend these...