Friday, 8 May 2015

Sober Conversations

Day 68. The numbers are slowing clocking up, and it is getting easier....

Last night I went out with some of the Mums from #3's class (Year 1). I've known these ladies now for a year and a half, and this was about the eighth social we've had in that time.

We met in a local restaurant. I ordered a diet coke. I said that I was focussing on being 'beach body ready' for the summer. What a joke! I haven't been 'beach body ready' for twenty years!

In any case, we always go to Cornwall in the summer, so I end up encased in a full body wetsuit, not a teensy weensy bikini. 'Beach body ready' in Cornwall actually involves laying down as much subcutaneous fat as possible as insulation!

Anyhow, no-one batted an eyelid at my ridiculous excuse, they just accepted it and moved on.

Yet again, I realised how little everyone drank. One or two glasses each. In the old days I would have drunk half a bottle 'while getting ready' and at least another half bottle over dinner. (I noticed that the bill was a lot lower with me on the diet coke!).

I started chatting to one of the Mums who I like, but only know through the school. "I'm so sorry," I say, "but I can't remember the name of your little girl, Tom's sister."

"Lily," she says, somewhat icily. I take it I've asked her this question a number of times before.

"Oh, yes, so sorry! Isn't she starting school in September?" I ask, trying to make up ground.

"She's already there." More icy.

"Of course she is! So she'll be going to the Upper School soon?" I'm starting to panic. She's looking really unimpressed.

"She's already at the Upper School. Year 3." Oh bollocks. And the problem is that I couldn't even neck a glass of wine to take the edge of my embarrassment.

I realise that I must have had all of these conversations a number of times over the last few years and just totally forgotten all the details. Plus, after a few drinks, I'd get stuck on 'transmit' rather than 'receive.' Another person speaking was just a chance for me to work out what to say next.

I had honestly believed that everyone I knew drank (almost) as much as me. But now I wonder whether we heavy drinkers just manage to surround ourselves by other heavy drinkers because we feel more comfortable with them. Perhaps they are the only people who actually want to hang out with us.

I wrote a post a while ago titled 'Will I Lose all my Friends?' I wonder now whether there may have been many potential friendships that went totally by the wayside due to my drunken inability to show any genuine interest in anybody else.

I may well lose some of my drunken friendships, but perhaps I'll pick up a lot of more sober ones.

I came home, somewhat humbled, chastened and reflective, and watched the election results come in with the husband and a mug of hot chocolate.

By the way, with all the UK election coverage I've been thinking of a previous Prime Minister - Winston Churchill, and his huge fondness for a drink. If you missed my post on exactly how much Winnie managed to drink each day, then follow this link: Why Ex-Drinkers Rock - Part 2.

Happy Friday to you all!



  1. Happy friday SM. I agree, this IS getting easier. I thought I would let you know how I am doing with Jason Vale's book. In a word, Fantastic. I cannot recommend this book enough. The book is completely altering the way that I perceive alcohol. I am beginning to realise that drinking alcohol has absolutely no positive benefits at all. It now has no place in my life anymore so why should I miss it? Suddenly, this is not seeming like a sacrifice anymore, but a blessing. a route to freedom, a release from the 'One day at a time mentality'. Time to keep breaking down the brainwashing and BS that surrounds the drug called alcohol. Time to take back the freedon that I and my family deserve. Feeling great today. Have a wonderful weekend SM x

    1. Hurrah! So pleased. I felt the same when I read it - like the scales had fallen away from my eyes. I must read it again as a reminder. SM x

  2. So true. I have let a number of friendships slide. Heavy drinkers get uncomfortable when one of the pack realizes sober is better.
    But there are so many new people to meet! Lovely, kind people who don't spend their time drinking their loves away.
    It's very eye opening.


  3. Hi sm it IS getting easier isn't it - I've realised recently I rarely even think about not drinking some days and have certainly got over "craving " it at wine o clock - who knew all those weeks ago we would still be here not only on the wagon but enjoying the wagon ride too :-) happy Friday

    1. Go us! Isn't it your two month soberversary Kags?

  4. I've been worried about meeting up with old school friends in London for drinks. Haven't seen them in years, decades some of them. Feel so insecure about not drinking I was considering joining in to avoid the conversation. I don't want to though. I guess not drinking for health reasons is banal enough. It's feeling exposed that's frightening. And feeling a fraud because I don't really believe I'm strong enough to stay sober for ever.

    1. I think old friends are the trickiest sober nights out! But try and remember how badly it might have gone if you'd got totally ratted ;-). Good luck KT! X

  5. Dear SM,
    I only have a few former co-workers I don't go see anymore. Not that I'll drink, but I am finding it boring. All they do is drink in a crumby bar.
    These few were big drinkers including me.
    Most of my other friends I love to meet for lunch, coffee, walks, yoga, or other fun stuff!