Day 4 of ski holiday. Day 30 alcohol free.
I've been thinking a lot about the AA mantra of 'one day at a time.' I've always thought that it sounded horribly defeatist, and rather depressing. Surely if you only think ahead by one day you're putting your whole life on hold? How can you possibly plan your future one day at a time? Haven't I got more drive and determination than that? But, 30 days in and I'm starting to get it.
Back in the early days (it feels like a lifetime ago), not drinking, despite being hard, was a real novelty. An adventure. It felt like another circuit on the wild roller coaster of life. But now that things are evening out a bit it's easier, but all feels rather....flat.
I've read a lot about the initial 'honeymoon period' of sobriety - some people call it the 'pink cloud'. Like all honeymoons it does - apparently - come to an end. Then you realise that the wild excitement is all over and this is it for the rest of your life.
This holiday I've managed pretty well, all things considered, with the stressful journey without wine at the end of it, the romantic meal without wine, the après ski without wine etc. But when I think about never having another dinner with the husband whilst sharing a bottle of red, never having another holiday cocktail or a celebratory glass of champagne, it scares the pants off me.
So that's why 'one day at a time' is finally making sense. I know I can manage today. I know I can manage tomorrow. I'm not going to let myself even think about ten years down the line. I'm hoping that one day - after all the day-at-a-times have added up to a good long stretch - I can think about 'forever' without breaking out in a cold sweat.
This evening I'm sitting by the fire clutching an alcohol free beer, watching the snow falling outside and thinking about Nicola who posted a comment yesterday and is on Day 1. The evenings are hard initially, Nicola, but the mornings make it all worthwhile.
And the evenings do get better. Last night we took #1, #2 and #3 out for a steak fondue. The husband had a carafe of red wine. I poured my diet coke into a wine glass and sipped it delicately (first time I've sipped delicately from a wine glass!). And we had a blast. At no point did I have to sit on my hands to stop myself wrestling the vino from the husband. At no point did I want to kill anyone. I didn't make excuses to try and wrap the evening up as fast as possible. I was calm, good company and I enjoyed myself. Who knew?
So good luck, Nicola, and everyone else reading this. And remember these lines from Invictus - the poem that inspired Nelson Mandela: I am the master of my fate. I am the captain of my soul.
I am. Not the wine witch.
Love SM x