Oh, I Don’t Drink!

I had a funny moment today when a sudden, out-of-the-blue thought sprang up and disrupted my quiet, plodding along morning brain. I don’t know what prompted it but landing squarely and suddenly at the forefront of my mind were these words; ‘I don’t drink, I am a non-drinker, I have become somebody who does not ever touch alcohol…as if I have certain religious beliefs that forbid me from drinking alcohol I just never, ever drink.’

Magic water, magic nature, beautiful blue effect

This internal confirmation of my teetotal commitment tumbled rudely into my chain of thoughts and made me catch my breath. If you had known me before I stopped drinking you would know why. I never, ever imagined that I would be a person who did not drink booze. I used to be, very simply, a drinker – it’s what I was known for.

I recall going for dinner at a boyfriend’s parents’ house in my late teens, his father being a wine connoisseur who enjoyed indulging in his love of fine wines in the company of guests. Upon settling into the sumptuous settee before we ate I was handed a glass of something red and fantastically expensive. As he passed me the elegant wine glass, the father bore his eyes into mine and said sternly ‘This is a VERY good wine – please do not guzzle it.’ He totally had my number.

When I look back over photographs stretching back twenty years I see alcohol featuring in almost all of them; holiday snaps, Christmases, birthdays, nights out, nights in – life was one very long and raucous party and I was usually to be found slap bang in the middle of it, shining in the spotlight, always drinking.

I have worked very hard on being sober and happy over the last couple of years; it didn’t come easy and I have expended a lot of time and energy in my acceptance of this radical departure from old destructive habits. I think I’ve been so busy with ensuring I am ok about not drinking that the end result has almost arrived unnoticed – that is to say the transition from colossal pisshead to totally straight person has happened amidst such a sea of change that this morning’s sudden and stark thought surprised me.

Me? Teetotal? Now there’s something I thought I would never say. I am now so definitively a non-drinker whereas once I was defined by my enormous affection for wine and enthusiasm for losing myself in the maddening, mind-altering, crazed mayhem that it initiated in me. Five years ago I would have bet large amounts of money on me drinking my way through life until the alcoholic sun eventually sank on my world and plunged everything in it into complete blackness.

Today I am better – very different, but very much better. Which is kind of surprising.


7 thoughts on “Oh, I Don’t Drink!

  1. I sometimes get those thoughts too – as if I just woke up to the fact I don’t drink! Like it’s a surprise that is being let out of the bag now. A not-so-gentle reminder that life has changed…for the better. Different, for sure, but for the better. I am still early enough in my recovery to remember what it was like, to still feel the burn of that old life, to still be suffering a few lingering reminders from that old way of living. But it’s nice to have this unveiling of a new life that precludes not only alcohol but other self-destructive habits and ways of thinking.

    I love the dad telling you not to chug…ha ha. That would have been me. Torture not to chug, eh?


    • Ha ha yes it is funny now – I was always the loose canon I think in social situations, anywhere that booze was available. It’s so nice having the freedom these days to go out and know that I won’t be making such an idiot of myself as I did in the old days. The dad who I have written about here threw a very lavish party one time for his daughter, and whilst all the guests (me included) were milling around the garden, drinking and chatting, one girl who was even drunker than I was slipped and fell into the fish pond! I always remember thinking ‘so glad that wasn’t me!!’

      Thanks for your comment Paul and hope you are well x

  2. I have the same thoughts! I was just like you – life of the party and obsessed with wine. Seriously, who would’ve thought we would be writing about our sobriety?! But, here we are and I’m SO grateful to be part of this awesome community. Miracles do happen!

  3. Lou says:

    I have said these words a few times recently to myself and out loud. I’m not sure anyone believes me yet but it makes me feel good saying it. I still can’t believe I have left behind my partying ways…I’m still having fun and it is better being sober. For a start I no longer fall over on my heels! X

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