Happy Sunday morning, everyone, and HUGE CONGRATS to Silver Birch (my favourite tree) on 100 days sober! Go crazy with the lime and soda, SB ;-)
It's very easy when you've been sober for a while to get into the habit of what's known as romancing the drink.
This is when you look back at the drinking days and only remember the good bits. You become obsessed by the memory of the first glass of cold, white wine after a long day.
You remember the sound of the cork leaving the bottle, the gentle glug glug glug of wine hitting your glass. You picture yourself, relaxing in your arm chair and taking the first sip. The tart taste on your tongue and the feeling of relaxation as it hits the bloodstream....
....damn, I'm doing it again.
What we start to forget is where that first glass leads. The race to the bottom of the bottle. The feeling of despair and shame when we realise that we've done it again. And the hangover!
So, every now and again, it's important to make yourself remember. Read back over the list you wrote before you stopped entitled Reasons to Quit Drinking, or similar. Read your blog, journal, or a book you associated with back then. Fight off the 'good' memories with the bad.
So, yesterday I re-read an early post on hangovers. Click here for Sundays: Hair of the Dog.
It's been so long since I had a hangover that I can barely remember the horrors. This post bought it back. Along with the realisation I had that there are two types of drinker: those whose hangover puts them off drinking for several days, and those who believe the only cure is to drink through it. Naturally, I was in the latter camp. That was 'a sign'.
(See my post on 5 Signs that you're a Problem Drinker)
In the paper yesterday there was an article on some Dutch research among 800 students. They monitored how much they drank, what 'hangover prevention methods' they employed and how they felt the next day.
The conclusion was that there is nothing you can do to prevent a hangover (apart, obviously, from not drinking too much *smug face*).
So, think about all that energy spent trying to drink pints of water when drunk. Waking up in the night and drinking pints more. Nurofen before bedtime. Kebabs on the way home. Glasses of milk. Etcetera etcetera.
TOTAL WASTE OF TIME! The number of times I nearly gave myself a black eye with the tap while drunkenly trying to wedge my mouth under it rather than stagger down the stairs to find a glass. Needn't have bothered!
I thought back to one particular hungover morning.
I'd woken up just before 9am. Crashing headache. Mouth like the bottom of a parrot's cage. Hair stuck to face. Face stuck to pillow.
With mounting horror, I realised that I had to get up to move my car. My resident's parking permit had expired, and I had to move it before the wardens ticketed it. Then I had to get to the town hall and queue for hours for a new permit with a hangover.
I staggered to the car in my pyjamas (I hadn't thought this one through). I drove to the local supermarket, thinking I could leave my car in their car park for the day.
Still half asleep, I took the wrong turn and ended up in the supermarket loading bay. Stupid error. I reversed. What I couldn't see in the rear view mirror was a mini roundabout. I reversed over it. I stopped. The car wouldn't budge. I was suspended, all four wheels off the ground, on top of the roundabout!
I had to get out of the car IN MY PYJAMAS and stand, looking at my dilemma, while everyone else went round the roundabout I was stuck on top of.
THE HUMILIATION! It took four beefy security guards to lift my car off and place it back on the road.
No more hangovers, my friends. Never again.
P.S. A guilty admission. One of my favourite things now is to wake up, bright eyed and bushy tailed, to discover that Mr SM has a crashing hangover. This makes me not a very nice person.