It’s almost the end of the day. I just got home from seeing a Bradley Cooper movie — a great way to pass the time and feel good. (I could watch that man read the phone book…and there’s the added bonus of knowing he’s been sober for years and doing just fine, thankyouverymuch.)
I’ve eaten a bit too much today, something I want to be gentle on myself about but be aware of too. Among the many benefits of quitting drinking are the physical changes I keep hearing about: losing weight, being less puffy, getting leaner, skin improving, eyes whiter, and on and on. I’d like to lose some weight — I’m carrying about 15 pounds more than I’d like to be — and drinking *at least* a bottle of wine every day wasn’t helping. Those hundreds of calories going straight to fat, plus all the extra food I’d put in my pie hole when I had a buzz on. Nope, not helping.
Time passed so fast with my lover, Drink. One thing I’ve noticed, as I’ve gone for days without drinking in the past, is how very slowly the days seem to pass. Five days quite literally feels like five weeks. The AF time warp. The longest I’ve ever gone without a drink since I started drinking at age 20 is nine days. And while it felt like a huge accomplishment that went on FOREVER, I did feel better. I had more energy. My head was clearer. I was brighter, my skin looked better and I felt leaner.
But that was almost a year ago and since then, the longest I’ve lasted is four days. And oh, there have been so many many bottles in between. So many.
My best friend recently said to me, “This may be the hardest breakup you’ve ever been through, but it will be worth it.”
Right. She’s right. I’ve broken up with Drink because our relationship wasn’t working for me anymore. I feel stunted. Held back and slipping further behind. All of the things I could be doing with my life and instead I cosy up with Drink every night with its empty promises. Its false affection. Its pound of flesh.
I started working with a life coach earlier this year and self-love is one of the most important priorities we’ve identified. Leaving Drink is the most powerful act of self-love and care there is, I think. And as hard as it has been — this process of letting go — I have to remind myself over and over: Drink never really loved me anyway. I’ve never been more lonely.
As Sheryl Sandberg said when her lovely husband died unexpectedly: I’m going to have to “Kick the shit out of Option B.” Yep. Here goes.