Tuesday, January 9, 2018

My fantastic New Years Eve..

This New Year's Eve was the best I have had for many years. So, so good. I just wish I could go back there tonight and do it all over again, it was that good. It was soul restoring. It was epic.

To be honest the lead up wasn't great. During the day on the 31st I was not that jazzed about the whole thing. We were camping with 4 other families by the beach having a very relaxing and lovely time but I kept thinking to myself all day I wished I could just crawl into my tent and go to bed at the normal time and not have to force myself to stay up till midnight.

I just hate that New Year's Eve comes with such a massive weight of expectation like it has to be the MOST FUN night to rival all other nights of the year. I could probably just relax about that thought process but don't seem to be able to. Maybe I'm too fond of my early nights?

And of course I'm aware that for many people on the planet (including me for 20+ years) the main way to ensure a blinder of a New Year's Eve is to sink lots of piss and get blotto.

But now I don't drink and I've retrained my brain to see that drunk does not equal fun... it's just drunk, and there are many wonderful, natural ways to have fun that don't require chemical enhancement. But for some stupid reason I still feel that NYE pressure to somehow elevate the evening to something great.. and frankly I can't really be bothered.

Anyway, "it is what it is" I told myself in the lead-up and just prepared to get through the evening having a good time knowing that the pressure would soon be off. Little did I know that magic would happen for me although I'd have to wait until after midnight for it to properly kick in.

Early in the evening we had a camp concert that involved a variety of performances (a couple of which I took part in) and that was cool. Then we had a disco with everyone jumping around to a strange mix of poppy dance tunes. Then the guitars came out and we had a singalong. That was all good fun.

But by 11.30pm I was tired, half the kids had crashed out.. some of the adults were a bit boozed.. I was struggling to avoid eating chocolate (and didn't manage to do so, scoffing many Maltesers before midnight), and my air bed had never looked so good. I would have quite happily slipped off to retire at that point.

Soon enough midnight arrived and we all hugged and whooped along with others in the campsite. The last few kids were put to bed and I figured I'd slip away pretty quickly myself.

But then the magic happened.

We had our Megaboom speaker sitting on the sand in between our tents and the music got changed from cheesy kid-friendly hits to more cruisy dancy/trancy/techno beats. And suddenly I got my dance on.

Big time.

I danced. I danced and I danced and I danced. I danced non-stop for over an hour standing under the moonlight with my feet in the sand, a glow stick in each hand and my eyes mostly shut. I totally just got into the groove with the music and danced. I swayed, ducked, bobbed, twirled, waved and moved. It was utterly fantastic.

By this stage there were just us adults - 10 of us - standing around the speaker like it was a bonfire. Everyone was mello, chatting in twos or threes or just grooving along to the music like I was. OMG I don't know how to explain it but the hour of dancing I did between midnight and 1am was amazing and utterly soul restoring. I felt so comfortable, didn't care what I looked like or what anyone thought of me. I was fully relaxed with our friends, fully relaxed in my own skin, fully into the music and just so, so happy.

Grooving, moving, swaying, ducking, diving and waving. I pointed and swished and waved my glow sticks non-stop. A few times I joked that I was directing airplanes like a ground controller at the airport and bent my arms like that! Also made big circles around and around and did quick flicks to make the glow sticks blur. In fact, now that I write I think it was the glow sticks in my hand that gave me so much joy. I was all about waving my arms to move them in time with the beat.

So, so, so happy. It was the best dance I have had in AGES and as a result the best New Year's I have had in AGES. Dancing in the half light with a great group of friends, totally relaxed in the outdoors with fantastic tunes and NO. BOOZE. REQUIRED.

Proof once again that alcohol isn't required to have a fun time. A fun time comes when all the elements inherent in the moment collide to produce genuine feelings of pleasure and happiness.

Happy Sober 2018 to everyone out in cyber-land who is brave enough to dig deep to remove alcohol and live in the raw 100% of the time. It's hard work at first getting sober, but so worth it. Worth it for magical nights like my New Year's Eve. I wouldn't have changed it for the world.

Love, Mrs D xxx


  1. Wow! What a big, completely unexpected surprise for you! That is so awesome. I have been reading your book and have whizzed through it quickly. It has really helped me to get started on my path to living a life free of the poison that has caused me so much misery. Anyway, thank you for sharing your NYE experience. I look forward to all the surprises that are awaiting my attention.... maybe one will fall in my lap tomorrow. Hopefully it's a good one;)

    P.S. I'm just starting chapter 18. I loved the part in chapter 17 that had to do with the theme of "having fun without alcohol". It complements your recent NYE experience!

    Take care,


  2. You have encouraged me to stick with my sobriety! I can't wait to have good times sober.

  3. My first sober new year. I DID IT!! Thank you Mrs D!! I was camping too. I was SO anxious on NY eve during the day about midnight and the (usual, expected, boozy) lead up....Friends invited me to their tent....shite....I couldn't be arsed explaining about not boozing etc. Decided in the end to go...had one fizzy and said I wanted to be fresh for New years morning....no hassle, full respect only from my friends. I managed to stay awake until 11.30pm. I woke early next morning for my first clear headed, nausea free, new years day in 27 years! For me New years day always meant midnight. Now, for sober me is the first Jan...no matter what time...a new beginning, letting go of the old unwanted crap from the year just gone. Thanks again Mrs D. Not to sound creepy I swear!! I was the one who met you at the freezer room and blurted out "you're my hero" (how embarrassing!) Then I lost the power of speech and went all blotchy and shaky and ran back to my caravan and hid for the rest of the holiday LOL! For some people their hero would be Nelson Mandela or Mother Theresa...for me it was your good self. Your courage in being truthful about booze and how to get sober has honestly changed every aspect of my life for the better...Jees, I think my comment might be longer than your article. Just THANK YOU :) xo

  4. How fantastic! My New Years Eve (1st sober) was also surprisingly fun! At about 11pm we popped down to the local pub'the Hipi Pipi'and I totally felt like having a boogie to the one man cover band. I didn't 'cos the friends I was with weren't and I was too self-conscious to dance by myself but I really felt an awesome, sober vibe which was totally unexpected!

  5. That sounds amazing, Mrs. D! I had my 1st sober NYE in 20 years. I embrace every glorious morning of sobriety and every 1st cup of coffee without the night-in-review angst and sick gut. Sometimes alcohol looks charming out there in the world, but you are out there in MY world, a living example of the truth that fun just happens, and being sober when it is happening is more amazing and ultimately more memorable. May this year bring you more glow stick dance glee-esque moments to you in many, many forms...and thanks for the reminder that fun is for everyone, no booze required!

  6. I never was into New Year's eve even when I was a drinker. I always considered it amateur night. today, 10 January 2018 marks exactly one year of no drinking for me. no anything, 100 % sobriety & loving it! I was a moderate Beer Drinker during week nights anywhere from 2 to 8 beers weekends usually many more. always went to work never got in trouble never behave badly, etc. I stopped drinking because I put on weight. After about four months of no drinking I went on Alcoholics Anonymous website did extensive reading and learned a lot about myself. I dont know if the term ALCOHOLIC technically defines me, but I wont take the first drink to find out.�� I loved my beer, but I let it steel a lot of my time. I am an avid recreational athlete, I now have even more time to pursue my sports. best wishes to all.
    Annapolis Maryland USA
    pasadenaray1 instagram

  7. I finished your book not too long ago and decided to see how things were going via your blog. I am a drinker who would love to quit .. but still hasn’t! My son is 2 and I know it needs to be done sooner than later so he doesn’t remember the times I drank. I don’t get hammered but once I get home from work around 4, I pour glasses of wine until about 9, then go to bed around 10. I’m not drunk, just a little buzzed, but I’m sick of waking up with that foggy, not fully alert feeling! I’m at work right now and I feel fine besides the fuzzy head feeling which drives me nuts, yet I still haven’t stopped. I admire your courage and words and hope that someday, it will be enough and I will stop. <3

  8. First of all, I so envy you! You can spend NYE on the beach. Well, of course we could do except that we would freeze, here in Finland.

    I have not given up the booze completely but your texts among some others has taught me that it is possible to enjoy things sober. I have now no problem to go to parties and dinners with my car. But I have to admit that there is still some mental barrier against dancing sober. I love to dance but idea of doing it without the help of alcohol sounds strange. Probably because I have not practiced that since the school discos (when I was 14 years or so).
    I already did go once to salsa club on week night with a car and there we jammed with my friend (who also decided not to drink more than one beer) all night and I did not miss the drink. But it cannot be counted as real dancing. Maybe one day......

  9. I just read this with a smile on my face. Its funny because I am reading your book, and I feel like you and I would be great friends if we didn't live on different continents. Reading your book (you are on month three) and reading this post is like travelling in time. I want to tell that you about this you! Thanks for your story. I'm starting with Dry January, and blogging about it because of you!

  10. I have just read your book. I found it very honest, emotional, (reading it in the car whilst husband driving tears falling down my face) and totally relate to it. There is another me in fact looking at your blogs there is a few of us. Thank god I am now not alone. Thank your for writing this book and your blogs. I now have somewhere to turn to when that wine voice gets too much. And lastly a moohoosive congratulations on living sober and loving yourself and your life. This will be me xxx

  11. Thank you for your blogspot! I just started mine today and am trying to figure out how to subscribe to others and get in the conversation. Day 88 here.