Tuesday, April 1, 2014

We're not shit

Recovering from a tummy bug. Blurgh. Nothing like a tummy bug to remind me what it was like to be hungover. I think I've almost forgotten what it's like to be hungover.

Not just the physical symptoms - headache & sick guts - but the psychological ones - the guilt and the overwhelming feeling that I was shit.

I know that's not very poetic but that feeling 'I'm shit' is kind of what pervaded my brain in the last years of my drinking. I'm shit because I let myself down again, I'm shit because I'm hungover again, I'm shit because I can't moderate. I'm shit.

Of course I'm not shit and alcohol is BLOODY ADDICTIVE! And we're not weak or bad people because we get addicted to something which is addictive. We're just the ones who got addicted.

That's the kind of bummer thing about alcohol… it seems to pick and choose who is going to be able to moderate and who is not. Some people can use it all their lives.. in good times and in bad.. and never cross over that blurry line from 'normal, functional' drinking to 'abnormal, dysfunctional' drinking. But some of us end up on the wrong side .. the addicted side .. the side where alcohol is dragging us down, ruling our lives, squashing our fire .. all those shitty things that alcohol does when you rely on it heavily, can't control it and drink too much.

Alcohol is shit. We're not.

Our challenge as addicted human beings is to front up and admit that we are one of those people who can't control the drug of alcohol. We don't have to admit it publicly if we don't want… we can just admit it privately to ourselves.

And then what we need to do is take a step outside of the 'norm' and become people who don't touch alcohol ever.. in a world awash with booze.

And it's hard, sometimes, because we feel different, and left out. But we're not left out of anything! We can do everything drinkers do.. we just happen to do it without drinking a brain bending liquid. That's my attitude. Right from the moment I realised I had no choice but to remove alcohol from my life I was  DETERMINED that I was going to CONVINCE MY BRAIN  that I could live happily without it.

Happily. It had to be happily. I couldn't bear the thought of being a miserable non-drinker for the rest of my life. And you know what… my brain got convinced..! I am a happy non-drinker.

Tonight I'm going to meet a couple of girlfriends at a local bistro for dinner/drinks/nibbles whatever we decide to have. I've not been eating much the past couple of days because of the tummy bug so I might just have a lemonade. Maybe some fries. They might have wine. They might not. I don't care. Tonight is not about what is in my glass. It's about getting out of the house for a couple of hours and catching up with girlfriends.

Love, Mrs D xxx


  1. "We're not weak or bad people because we get addicted to something which is addictive" is perfect! I know this, I get it, and I'm really trying to live this truth. If I just don't accept the shame that comes with addiction, and instead see that "Person becomes addicted to addictive substance!" is no big surprise, then the rest gets easier. That's what I'm working at doing, anyway. I'm not quite there yet, and your post made me weep a bit just thinking that I do still have that shit feeling about it all sometimes. But I'm so super glad you're here and showing the way and I am charging along my own way, reminding myself that I'm not bad, just one of the ones who got addicted. Thanks for sharing your clear thinking on this. I hope you have lots of fun with your friends! xo

  2. Amen Mrs D! :) Hope the tummy bug is moving on xx

  3. Keep firmly in your/our minds: it is not us that is bad but the alcohol. Alcohol is a poison full stop. I was made to feel shit for years because of drink; by my husband, who then infiltrated his opinions onto my daughter! I was hit, pushed, bruised, called every evil foul name under the sun. I was "literally" kicked out of my own bed, whereupon I had to sleep on the sofa! Waking up feeling like death full of hatred for myself & my situation. Thinking I just cannot stand this life any more. I didn't need to go to AA meetings to feel & hear I was shit, I was told that by my own family every day of the year. He tried everything to make me stop from all the above, cutting up my clothes, my wedding dress, all my precious knitwear that I cannot ever replace to finally cutting my Louis vuitton handbag. My life was hell. But, I held on because to leave would mean I literally lose everything. I bide my time. When the final payment is made on my house then I can stake my half & move on. I don't drink coz I couldn't stand the pain. When you live with a bully you have to really really look after yourself & feel as best as you can about yourself and drinking/hangovers like nervous breakdowns I cannot tolerate. I try every day to feel good physically & mentally and that is a battle in itself and reading your blog really does uplift me. Thank you x

  4. "Alcohol is shit. I'm not" I feel I should write that in big letters and stick it to my wall to remind me. I'm still thinking a lot about shame - I can shift it out of my head, but somehow not out of my heart. Not yet anyway. Thank you for the post - uplifting and positive, and all kicking off with a tummy bug - made me smile :) Enjoy your night out. xxx

  5. I'm with you, I can live happily without alcohol and it's grand!

  6. Hope you are fully better soon

  7. I think I had that bug too!!! Not good...not good at all.

    Feel better!


  8. It is so simple when you put it like this. Thanks for being such a kick ass sober role model! Hugs!

  9. "And it's hard, sometimes, because we feel different, and left out." That sentence jumped out at me, because when I first quit drinking I really did feel Left Out, and it was a horrible feeling. But like so much about alcohol, it was a big fat lie. Getting sober is actually the opposite of being left out. Now I get to be included in all sorts of things alcohol blots out of life: relating authentically to people, enjoying beautiful fresh early mornings, daily wake-up feelings of being healthy and whole and honourable, always able to drive the car, help in an emergency... always feeling REAL and in touch with sober angel me. Woop.

  10. Absolutely! I agree 100%. Why are we made to feel bad over the fact we became addicted to an addictive substance? Crazy. Hope you are feeling tons better now.

  11. "Not just the physical symptoms - headache & sick guts - but the psychological ones - the guilt and the overwhelming feeling that I was shit."

    Avoiding the psychological hangover is what still keeps me going. The physical symptoms I could deal with because I'd know what to expect, but I've watched my sober number slowly increase over the last few months, and ruining that would trigger guilty feelings far greater than what I used to experience. No Thanks!

  12. I never thought about it this way. I always felt ashamed and weak at becoming addicted to alcohol. So much so that I have been too ashamed to proudly tell people that I have been sober for a year and a half. I only admit it to you in this group. I have made excuses for not drinking with family and friends because I have been ashamed that I am an alcoholic. I need to reflect on this more and not be afraid of being truthful. Thank you Mrs D for helping me to think of this from a different perspective.

  13. What a hopeful blog! i was just thinking about this in a meeting the other day. One of the blessings i've received in recovery is that i have lost the craving for it. That feeling of not being caught in those capricious tides pulling me under and dragging me to the booze-- what a relief! Free at last!