I absolutely love Buzzfeed. Most of the workouts that I do I find on You Tube. Both Tone It Up and Blogilates have You Tube pages, so when I finish up my routine, I’ll just pop through my subscriptions for a little break to bring my heart rate back down.
Today, I stumbled on My First 30 Days Sober and it was 100% relatable. Sometimes, Buzzfeed just hits the nail on the head, so to speak, and this was certainly one of those times.
Almost 3 years ago now, I did what this man did. I was stressed out and emotional and I was using alcohol to get me through it. I am also someone that due to stress, has vertigo and IBS. Both of these ailments increase with alcohol consumption (Note: if you get super dizzy and unbalanced when you drink–chances are you also have vertigo. Yay!).
I always enjoyed drinking. I rarely declined a drink when out with friends. It was my crutch to get through social situations. I spent most of my twenties drunk. Like really drunk. My tolerance was always pretty high (Mom says she was the same way) so I could drink 3 drinks and have a little bit of a buzz or I could have 6 and be what I deemed, “tipsy fantastic.”
First of all, at the time that I was drinking I made decent money but I have never been affluent. Drinking is friggin’ expensive if you actually know what you like. Me. I love top shelf tequila, whiskey, and Belvedere. And when I drank, if I was getting a refill, I tended to get the more expensive drinks after my first three were gone.
I am a dramatic drunk. I’m also a super funny drunk. That dramatic drunk. That one always bothered me.
Sober, I hate drama. I mean hate it. Have I caused it before? Of course I have. That doesn’t mean it’s enjoyable.
Drunk, I seemed to thrive on it. Especially if I was in a more emotional state than I cared to share before I started drinking.
Watching this video brought me right back. About three years ago, I went out to a restaurant with a friend to bitch about work. And about boys. And life in general. I drink 5 margaritas because the waitress loved us and just kept refilling. I got in my car and remember sitting there for more than 10 minutes because I suddenly remembered that I was an adult.
A living breathing adult who knows better than to drive right now.
So I sat until I felt less like I was tipsy. I rolled my windows down and took a deep breath. I dug out the Dramamine from my purse because my vertigo was kicking in. I felt my eyes well up when my stomach clenched. Just letting me know tomorrow was going to suck.
I drank half a bottle of water and then I drove the 10 minutes to my house from the restaurant. In that 10 minutes I decided that I needed to take a break.
Drinking wasn’t fun anymore. It made me feel worse and not better. I was trying to be healthier in general and hangovers impeded workouts. Not to mention, there is no nutritional value to hard liquor-my alcoholic beverage of choice.
The next day I was dizzy, cramping, and exhausted.
I spent my twenties drunk. Did I really need to spend my thirties that way too?
So I stopped. The next time I went out, I didn’t drink. The entire table stared. “WHAT?” That moment where his friends boo’d. I know what that feels like. When suddenly everyone stares at you like you’re insane because you don’t want a drink? Yup.
I went on vacation to see one of my best friends. When she went to the liquor store to pick up supplies for the party, I had to tell her that I wasn’t drinking anymore. It had been six weeks and I liked the clarity. That party was a testament to how incredibly awkward I am socially. But I did it. I was uncomfortable. I had no clue what to do with myself. And this was a group that knew me as someone that partied. But I did it.
Even now, when it comes up, people are still a little shocked that I don’t drink.
A lot ask me why and I simplify it by saying that is just wasn’t fun anymore.
That video. Those reasons he gave are 100% it.
Waking up doesn’t suck as much.
My face isn’t flush or puffy.
My body can show the definition of muscle when I’m working out.
I can work out longer (sometimes).
My vertigo is less constant.
I am less stressed.
I am able to process my emotions fully.
I feel better.
I’ll say that again.
I. Feel. Better.
I believe that I spent enough of my life drinking so I still don’t. I don’t intend to. It’s much like when I quit smoking. I’m just over it.
Good on Buzzfeed for capturing the clarity that making a decision to be sober, even just for 30 days, can give you.