Between my 39th and 40th birthdays, I abstained from alcohol. I realized how much I’d been using it to try to dull anxiety in charged social situations, to try to make parenting feel a little easier, or at least the pain of it more vague, and to fit in.
I found I was (thankfully) still fun and funny without it, AND was also actually more comfortable in my skin, more patient, better able to negotiate the stressful moments without giving up pieces of myself. I also learned my limits. What booze I do ok with, what I really don’t. When I could take a happy taste and it would serve instead of harm me.
Gradually over this past year, I got depressed and sloppy and arrogant, and it was again, nothing to drink a bottle of wine a night by myself, to start whilst the kids were still awake and needing things from me- drinking didn’t make their needs go away, it just made me more annoyed by them.
I’m not making any commitments right now, I don’t know when/if I’ll choose to have 🍷 again, but I know I want to be fully in control of all the parts of me, to not muddy up my feelings by messing with my mind. Therapy is digging around in stuff I’ve never healed, I know I need to look directly at it to work through it. Having a booze glaze over top won’t get me there.
Where’s everyone else with their use of substances in facing life and self?