Sick as a Dog

Last night I woke up at 2am with crippling stomach cramps and proceeded to spend the following two and a half hours ensconced in the en-suite bathroom, grateful for the small mercy that my other half was sleeping elsewhere (when he goes out knowing he will be drinking and coming in after I’ll have fallen asleep, he very compliantly settles for alternative sleeping quarters). After collapsing back in bed about 4am, covered in sweat but freezing cold and toying with the idea that I must have picked up malaria somehow, I drifted into unconsciousness for an hour before being woken by the baby at 5am.


Other Half very kindly took over baby duties which enabled me to stagger back to the boudoir, groaning quietly and clutching my stomach. I haven’t been able to go back to sleep, hence my writing this now, but I have been lying in bed for a while contemplating the sad truth that I used to make myself feel this way wittingly each and every weekend, and quite often mid-week too.

Whilst a bug of this nature is never pleasant, I am at least comforted by the knowledge that my sickness is purely a horrible piece of bad luck, rather than a dire physical state that I have inflicted on myself in exchange for a few hours of drinking, subsequently acting like an idiot and waking up only to remember the odd flash of the evening’s events anyway, thus rendering the by-product of being hungover as a total waste of my life.

Yes I look horrific, yes I feel as though I have been hit by a combine harvester, and yes I am suffering from a modicum of self-pity, but at least all I have to contend with today is the illness – the old associated guilt, shame and battering of my self-esteem are, happily, nowhere to be seen.

I have so much to do today and as any parent knows all too well, you simply don’t get to be poorly when there’s a baby to be cared for! So I’ll be kind to myself, nibble on a bit of dry toast (is that an old wives’ tale or does it work?) and try and keep a little water down, and then I’ll get on with my life, albeit in something of a restricted manner.

Once again I am reminded of why life is best embraced minus a drip-feed of alcohol.

12 thoughts on “Sick as a Dog

  1. Hope you soon feel much better Lucy! I thought after I’d read this, at least now you know you are ill ( hopefully not for long) and can treat being ill appropriately. I’m pretty sure there were times when I was ill ( never seriously thank goodness) but didn’t realise for a couple of days because although I felt awful I assumed it was a hangover . Then of course there’s the being depressed not because you are actually suffering from depression and need to address it, but because alcohol is a depressant.

    Look after yourself and get well soon.

    Sue S xx

    • Thanks Sue, I know exactly what you mean – life is just so much easier, in every way, without alcohol in it. Even being ill works to remind me why sober living wins hands down over my old boozy existence! Off to bed soon to try and recuperate… I hope all is well with you – did you manage to get hold of The Sober Revolution yet? Let me know what you think when you’ve read it!! Thanks as ever, Lucy x

      • I hope you feel better soon – just wanted to drop by to say that I read The Sober Revolution and loved it – and recommended it to a friend of mind. Very good stuff – thank you!

  2. Too true! For the 1st two years of my sobriety I used to get panic attacks when I would get sick. It just reminded me of how I felt when I was drinking way too much. My last year of drinking I was sick pretty much all the time. Trips to the gastroenterologist, physicals, getting GERD, vomiting at even smells of certain sorts… The list goes on. But like you, the last several times I’ve been ill I’ve reflected on the madness of my alcoholism and thanked God that those days are gone as long as i make the most of my daily reprieve.

    Get well soon.


      • Hi – I used to suffer panic attacks too but I haven’t had one in the 2 and a half years since I stopped drinking alcohol. Do you drink alcohol? If so I would advise you to try a couple of weeks without it and see if there is an improvement. If you haven’t already done so, you should definitely seek advice from your GP – there may be an underlying cause that you need to address. Best of luck with it, Lucy.

  3. Hope you are feeling better. I’m about to buy your book.. really look forward to it.. I like the idea of being a part of a sober revolution. Revolutionaries unite!! xx

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