Friday, June 24, 2016
Five Weeks Makes 35
Not only Day 35 but also the very first day of my vacation and - unexpectedly - I'm already in Chaos South.
We had planned to take two cars tomorrow morning. Around lunchtime family stuff led to this and that and me saying "well, okay, I'll just take him [ABL] and go tonight." When we first moved to the Hinterlands 16 years ago it wasn't unusual for me to work most of the day before we made the 300 mile trip but I got out of that habit years ago in favor of leaving the next morning. However today I was full of both energy and enthusiasm. We left at 4:30 in the afternoon, took a longer-than-expected dinner break and arrived at 9:45. Took another hour to set him up in the guest room, make tea, clear out the fridge and have a shower but now I'm in my own lovely room typing on an Actual Keyboard instead of my phone and although it's past my usual bedtime I'm wide awake but quite content.
I owe most, if not all, of this unexpected evening to sobriety. If I had still been drinking the way I used to drink I wouldn't have had the energy to work till three, pack the car and hit the road. Not physically because I'd be perennially draggy and definitely not emotionally. I think a lot of it is the sleep: it took every bit of a whole month but I'm finally going to sleep and staying asleep. That's a wonderful thing. Waking up truly rested is just such a game-changer.
In fact, this morning I was rested enough to think about how NOT to have a morning like yesterday with the dog and the changes I made actually worked--go me.
I'm not naive enough to think that now all of a sudden everything is going to be happy fun times or skippety-do but I certainly want to acknowledge that today turned out to be pretty excellent in a way that simply wouldn't have existed if I were still drinking.
I also want to use this day to remind myself: it takes a while. You quit drinking and the morning of Day 2 is awesome because you feel better than you have in a lot of mornings and the morning of Day 3 is still pretty decent but that's when the "oh wow I feel great" starts sloping down and the "gee I want a drink" starts sloping up and for me at least the obvious physical stuff starts leveling off right around then which is why Day 4 is such a hurdle. I can't remember how many times I would go two days then blow it on the evening of the third or fourth day. The next most vulnerable time was around the 7 day mark because "hell, I've been doing this (nearly)/(more than) a week now and don't feel a damned bit different physically and it's killing me emotionally so what's the point?"
A day like today was the point. Working hard AND playing hard in ways I wasn't even sure I could do any more. Hanging in there is worth it.
I hope when the next craving hits and All That Stuff starts running through my head I can remember that this is better...or at least remember to go reread my blog before resetting the counter. Good things start happening but it takes a while.