Monday, 1 February 2016

Sober House Party

Saturday night was a friend's birthday party.

She'd invited fourteen of the old University gang to her house in the country for dinner, and to stay the night. We'd all managed to offload the children, so it was a rare 'grown ups only' event.

I took a six pack of the trusty Beck's Blues down with me, and stashed them in the hostess's fridge.

And you know what? I've pretty much cracked the whole partying sober thing.

For a start, it really helps when you feel physically good, which after eleven months off the booze you do.

(Click here for more on quitting drinking and losing weight).

I didn't feel totally 'hot', but did feel, at the very least, 'warm.' I wore a red lace dress, and, according to Mr SM, everybody said I looked great (admittedly, they hadn't seen me since the whole cancer thing, so their expectations were probably pretty low).

I happily drank my AF beers before dinner. Then, once we'd sat down, I let them pour me a glass of red wine, but just drank the water. (People feel edgy if their dinner companion has an empty glass. So long as it's full, they don't care, or notice, if you drink it or not).

I had great fun at dinner catching up with old friends, then I won a table football tournament hands down (easy when the opposition are all drunk), and did lots of silly dancing.

Plus, I discovered that I have a new role at parties. People want to talk to me. They offload. They ask advice. This hasn't happened to me for years! No-one wants an in depth conversation with the out of control lush....

I talked to one friend about his insomnia, another about her new business ideas and yearning to escape London, and a third about being a step mum. Proper, life enhancing conversations that I still remember!

Then, at about 1.30am I sloped off to bed, knowing that no-one would notice, and that the only bit of the party I was missing was the bit that no-one would recall clearly.

And the morning!

A house full of hangovers. What a treat. I tried really hard not to feel smug, because that would be mean and unsympathetic of me.

I failed.

As I left, the hostess gave me a hug and said "I feel awful. I think I may join you on the whole no booze thing...."

We picked the children up from my parents' house, and took them out for lunch.

I was eulogising about the fact that Pizza Express have started stocking alcohol free beer (Vive La Revolution!)

#2 piped up "Mummy, how long has it been since you had any wine?"

"Nearly a year, sweetheart," I replied. "Why? Do you prefer it when I don't drink wine? Am I different?"

"Yes," he replied, "you're more....."

We all waited in anticipation, while he searched for an appropriate adjective. Beautiful? Patient? Kind?

"......Mummyish," he concluded with a flourish.

So, there you have it. Quit drinking. You'll still have a ball at parties, and you'll be more.... Mummyish.

Love SM x

20 comments:

  1. What a little sweetheart. Nothing better than being mummyish! Love the tip about having a full glass at the table and not drinking it. Am going to try that. Due to go for dinner and overnighter at our friends later in the month with some others. My friend has always been my BIG drinking buddy and to be fair, we have had some real laughs over the years, but just lately its become a bit too much. I know she will press me to drink as she's done it before and made me feel like a boring old stickler if I refuse. Shall just pretend I am drinking and slip it to the old fella (Mr S). He will be pleased. Btw hope all good with consultant today x

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  2. Terrific stuff. I'll be honest I couldn't do the full glass of wine thing whatever it may mean to those about me - that has to stay empty way too tempting for me. That is why I don't drink the AF beers either as that would trigger for me a whole heap of bad stuff.
    Escaping London - there is a very worthy ambition... and I only commute into our fair capital three days a week and that's too much for me these days

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  3. S. ober
    M. ummy
    U. tterly
    G. orgeous. :-D

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  4. Mummyish made me tear up a little bit!

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  5. No hangovers really make it all worthwhile. My sister said to me at the weekend she'd really like to have a glass of wine with me again in the future. She misses how it was. I just smiled and we chatted about all the good times. I know husband doesn't miss me falling asleep but I think he's feeling nostalgic too. Digging deep and focusing!!!

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  6. So, although I feel more mummyish and definitely more yummy mummy ;-), I'm not sure I'm still the fun wife and sister I was.....

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    1. Yes I worry about the same thing. Although my sister ( we were big drinkers together - real trouble) is currently on the wagon and we had a lovely dry lunch last week and both had a laugh as usual so maybe it's just a rosy tinted view of drinking together.

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  7. Love it. Not sure I am ready for a house party yet, but this week I went to my first party sober and my first fancy restaurant dinner with my husband (first month I stuck to sushi dinner only with him, because I never liked the way wine tasted with sushi, and I love green tea). The party was a book launch for a friend who just wrote a book on self-care so needless to say there was an amazing non-alcoholic cocktail option. Dinner was funny: as I was ordering an NA drink, my husband blurted "god it is going to be so much cheaper dining out with you now you don't drink"...oh the shame!!! But our server smiled sweetly and said, "I don't drink anymore either" and we exchanged a knowing smile... Anyway here in healthy Denver it is quite easy (I have discovered) to get delish NA options.. both my mocktails involved flavored drinking vinegars, soda water, fresh muddled fruit and (in one case) kombucha. Yes I know it sounds strange but it's bloody amazing. Something about the acidity of the vinegar is very appealing...probably because I loved a crisp white wine. Not sure if the whole drinking vinegar has hit the UK yet...but I can highly recommend it! Supposedly very healthy also....

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    1. Oh don't think that will catch on here. We were all brought up to believe that vinegar " dries your blood". : D

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  8. On the AF beer. I drink it. Have tried them all and I have to say Bitburger is by far the best. On Saturdaywent to a real ale pub with hubby - even they had AF beer - served with the comment 'you do know its alcohol free?' We sat a table where someone had left a full glass of white wine (have never undrstood how anyone can do that). It was hard not to reach over for it - but I didnt - but I don't think I'm ready to have a full glass of wine in front of me at social events, still likely to succumb.

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  9. On the AF beer. I drink it. Have tried them all and I have to say Bitburger is by far the best. On Saturdaywent to a real ale pub with hubby - even they had AF beer - served with the comment 'you do know its alcohol free?' We sat a table where someone had left a full glass of white wine (have never undrstood how anyone can do that). It was hard not to reach over for it - but I didnt - but I don't think I'm ready to have a full glass of wine in front of me at social events, still likely to succumb.

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  10. Mummyish sounds like the ultimate compliment to me. I cannot do the AF beer, I bought some on a friend's recommendation after not drinking for about a month and it was a major trigger and I haven't been able to successfully stop again since. I guess it depends on your associations.

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  11. Yes. What an awesome compliment from a child.
    You rock.

    I don't let them pour me wine. I don't like having a glass by me, even though today marks 26 months. I have to put myself first with this one.

    Keep writing. You are inspiring many!

    Anne

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  12. This is great (and also my worst fear right now). Hope my kids will think I'm more "mummyish"--- "mommyish" in our case :)

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  13. Such a brilliant post SM, every mother should aim to be more mummyish!

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  15. Awww I love the "mummyish" comment! In the eyes of you children What more could you ask to be!! :-) xx

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