I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again; life without alcohol means living a life that’s anchored in reality, rather than chasing the promise of the carefree and extraordinary pleasures that alcohol dangles but never delivers.
The reason I am reminded of this tonight is because it’s Mother’s Day tomorrow. In days gone by, I would have been eagerly anticipating this occasion because somewhere amidst the cup of tea in bed, the handmade card, the thoughtful gift and the sudden and out of character display of help around the house, would have been the beckoning finger of several large glasses of wine.
It might have been a meal booked in a restaurant, or friends or family invited round to the house for a Sunday roast, but however the celebration manifested itself, wine would have been on the cards.
The first glass would have been the appetiser, a taste of things to come. After half a bottle had gone, the nervousness would have begun – how long can I make that last for? Would it be terrible to crack a second bottle before we’ve reached 3 pm? Feeling slightly drunk and the meal is going to pot…would it be ok to just kick back and get drunk for the rest of the day?
The present and the handmade card would drift into a distant memory; the day would lose its meaning and become a lazy, hazy afternoon marred by the effects of the crisp, cold liquid poured into the glasses like a tinkling fountain constantly flowing until bedtime.
Thank God those days have entered into the history books. Thank God the person who did that has woken up to reality and seen the damage that those apparently innocuous and fun Sundays did to those around her. Thank God the person who drank alcohol in such a reckless fashion will be having a very different day on Mother’s Day, 2013.
This mum will be getting up with the baby at 6 am, because she can’t think of anything she would rather do than see that happy little face smiling from the cot at first light. This mum will be going to the gym with her eldest daughter later in the morning for a swim and a coffee, and then spending the afternoon with her wonderful family, eating, laughing and chatting. The day will be real. There will be no recriminations, arguments, or regrets. There will be no addiction looming in the mind of this mum, nothing to steal a single thought away from real life.
Tomorrow is Mother’s Day and it’s about mothers, and nothing else.