A Gift to Myself

A Gift to Myself

Day 5 has arrived! I’ve noticed a few things these last few days. I have sugar cravings unlike any I have ever experienced. I guess my sugar cravings were being satisfied by my alcohol consumption? Regardless, I definitely need to keep an eye on that and not give in to my desire to purchase Twinkies and Red Vines and Peanut M&M’s. I also feel grounded, or maybe less foggy? I realized when talking with my friend recently that when she said, “Remember last night when….”, that I actually remembered. There was no delayed reaction, or brain-wracking. I had been 100% present.

I went to a nearby island this weekend to run a 10K with my good friend. We’d booked a hotel and planned a day and evening of lunch, wandering through the historic downtown and then hunkering down in our hotel room with snacks and trashy Lifetime movies. Normally, this excursion would have involved finding a local tavern and imbibing. This time around, not so much. We did end up at a local tavern (we thought it was a restaurant) but I was proud of myself for not imbibing! I ordered my first-ever non-alcoholic beer. At first I felt like that was cheating, mostly because it looks like a real beer and tastes like, well, a shitty beer. I definitely don’t see myself having a six-pack in my fridge on a regular basis, but I think it’s going to be a fantastic option for social situations.

The run itself was transcendent. Perhaps it was all in my head, but I was convinced that I was stronger and faster because I hadn’t been drinking. I ran better than I have in weeks! I was flying. I was free. I was giving myself this amazing gift – exercise, health and strength. I completely let go and it felt amazing.

After the race, we’d normally celebrate with a beer. Our recovery drink! Instead, we celebrated with ice-cream. The other thing I discovered this weekend is that I am way more apt to eat when I know that I am not going to be drinking. I’d gotten into an awful habit of eating less and less, knowing that I’d be getting my calories from a bottle of wine, or a slew of beer or cocktails. So unhealthy. So messed up. Knowing that I had not met my daily caloric goal with alcohol, and wasn’t going to, made the ice-cream an absolute treat. My brain didn’t freak out. It truly felt like a celebration, and not a means to an end.

I am anticipating that it won’t always be this easy. I feel like I’m in the honeymoon stage of sobriety. I’m going to enjoy it for what it is, however – an accomplishment, a gift to myself (and probably to my husband and my friends, too!) and a journey that will only lead to great things.

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