A stroll through the wine aisle, part II

I’m at day 116 and have both pulled past the constant awkwardness (as though I’ve been holding my body/mind/heart in a funny position for weeks) and, more recently, stopped paying as much attention to the number of days since my last beer. But I do still look over at that number every couple of days. It matters. At the moment it is a very strong deterrent to drinking, because boy do I not want to zap back to single digits. I love my triple digits and hope to stay here for a long, long time.

I am also aware that old habits are dying Continue reading

Chipping away at my secrecy

I’ve started letting people into my drinking secret. A tiny amount, with no plans to expand it substantially. But this is a big deal.

Like a lot of you from what I can tell, I went to comical lengths to hide my drinking. I guess it’s part shame. And for me it was also related to the basic fact that I drank to try to achieve privacy. Some weird not-grounded-in-reality need for privacy, because I drank even when I was as alone as humanly possible. Like, in a tent in a state park in Maine Continue reading

Seeing beer, drinking peach tea

I’m sitting in the corner coffee shop, 4:47 p.m., staring at the almost empty pint glass of beer on a table next to an acquaintance’s computer. Irritated that that’s not me.

Last week I stood in line here to get my coffee, behind another acquaintance who was buying a pint of a different beer. This one was from a brewery in Fort Collins, Colorado, that I love and that I visited several years ago as part of a writing project (that never got off the ground) on solar-powered breweries. I love that label. It’s about fish. Cutthroat Porter. Come to think of it, maybe I have a fish-beer-label theme — think Two Hearted. We chatted about the brewery while the barista filled his glass. I had to walk away.

Earlier this week I wandered Continue reading

One drink isn’t just one drink: thoughts on day 49

Today is day 49 for me, and I can’t tell you how glad I am that I got a run at 2017. That wasn’t the plan — I just quit (again) on November 21 and god damn it, it finally stuck (again).

I’m in an interesting space. Getting past the first 10 days is so lovely. But I remained preoccupied, and then reaching 30 brought more great relief. I think this is the first time I’ve hit 30 days since the first time I quit in spring of 2015. (I feel so ashamed to admit that. I know I “shouldn’t.” But damn it I do. I promised myself I’d be honest on this blog, so there it is.) But I’ve stayed preoccupied in a low-grade way. Not craving, exactly, but wanting. I have a low-grade missing of my IPAs. A gentle nervousness Continue reading

Self-medication is the real target

I’ve come to see quitting alcohol not as a thing in itself, but as an element in the larger human project of quieting ourselves and calming our logistics in order to reveal our deeper connections — to ourselves and our surroundings.

For people with problems with alcohol dependency, quitting alcohol is essential. It’s such an insanely powerful introducer-of-chaos and numbing tool. But peace is not found in the absence of alcohol. It’s found when we find our own way to access the quiet, joyful, unworried self inside who knows we’re safe. Intrinsically safe and whole. Continue reading

On the normalization of women’s drinking, or how women are being screwed over once again by the advertising industry

Good morning, people. Once again I find myself so fully occupied with life logistics that the stream of blog posts I draft in my head goes untyped. But I think of this little cyberspace of mine and I’m reading what other bloggers in the sobercybersphere write and I have a lot to say about what I’m reading and experiencing. But that’s for another day.

The Washington Post had a very nice article today called “For Women Heavy Drinking Has Been Normalized” about the social phenomenon we’re seeing Continue reading