2;00pm. Just had a spa day with a friend and we are at lunch afterwards at a place that has awesome craft beers. She orders a summery ale with a tangerine finish and my mouth waters. I can have just one, I can do it. One won’t be a big deal, and day drinking is so, so nice.
2:02pm: Order a ginger beer, making sure the server hears me say “non-alcoholic”. I enjoy my lunch and leave feeling energetic and ready to start my weekend project, redecorating the office in my house.
3:30pm: Driving home, think about how I have the house to myself all weekend. Looking forward to seeing how the gold spray paint turns out on my table. What will I do in between sprays, while waiting for it to dry? A glass of red wine sounds nice. Actually, a bottle of red wine sounds nice. No one will know, I’m home alone. I’m in a good place emotionally now, so I can just drink the bottle, pass out and not do anything stupid.
4:00pm: The gas station on the corner of my street sells wine. It’s coming up now, f*ck it, I think I’m going to stop. I can start over tomorrow and 60 days will be here before I know it. Having the whole bottle to myself while I’m working on the office will be amazing. Ok, it’s on the left, I can see it. Sometimes the parking spots are all full and I hate when that happens and I don’t want to just pull up in some random parking spot because it draws attention to me. If there’s a spot open, I’m getting in the left lane and parking my car and going in and buying a bottle. Shoot, that truck is pulling in. It’s going to take my spot, don’t do it. Damn it, it just took the last open spot. Ok, keep driving, it wasn’t meant to be. JUST GET HOME.
4:10pm: Whew, that was close. Good thing that truck pulled in right before I got to the light. Ok, let’s get that table out to the garage.
5:00pm: Damn, that table was heavy but I got the first coat of spray paint on and now I can work on clearing out the rest of the office while it dries. I used to love cleaning and drinking wine. Having a buzz makes cleaning so much more fun. We do have that extra bottle of red wine in the rack that friends brought over last month. Dan probably doesn’t even know it’s there. I could drink it and he’d never notice it was missing. I don’t even really have to reset my days, it would just be one little blip. Do I really want to lie to myself though? Ok, think about it for another 30 minutes. If you still want it then, you can have it.
5:30pm: Yep, still want it. It’s not that big of a deal really. You’re not going to hurt anyone and it’s just one bottle…You’ll drink it slow. But what if you want more after that one bottle…you are known to not be able to make good choices once you take a drink. What if you think it’s a good idea to get in the car and go to the gas station to get more? That wouldn’t be good. You won’t, you know better now. You’ll be fine. Think how amazing it will feel to take that first sip and just relax and enjoy the rest of your night, painting furniture and organizing. It WILL be amazing. Ok, screw it. I’m drinking it.
5:40pm: Pull bottle out of rack before I can change my mind and rummage in drawer for wine opener. Found it. Ok, are you sure you want to do this? Yes. Yes, I’m sure. Struggle with cork, but finally, it’s open. Ahh. Let’s smell it first. Hmm, it doesn’t smell that great. It smells old. Wait a minute, does that say this was made in Virginia? Isn’t that where the bottle that Dan’s friend gave him was from…the bottle that Dan said he was going to drink soon? I’m pretty sure Dan’s friend actually owns a part of that vineyard. Shit, did I grab the wrong bottle? Race over to wine rack and look at the three other bottles…nope, they are all white. The Virginia one was the only red. I must have drank the other red. Ohhhhh. Right, I drank most of that the last time I relapsed and then poured the rest down the drain. Damn it, damn it, damn it. I can’t drink this wine. Dan would know for sure I drank and I can’t just go and replace this because it is from VIRGINIA!! I’m such an idiot. I should have checked before opening it. Put cork back on bottle and place back in wine rack.
5:45pm: I could go to the gas station and get wine. You pretty much already made up your mind that you are drinking already, so just do it. It makes no difference now. Put on flip-flops and grab keys.
5:47pm: No. There is a reason you opened that bottle from Virginia. It was to teach you a lesson. The Universe is looking out for you. Don’t do it. You will regret it. Kick flip flops off and go back outside to paint the second coat.
9:00pm: So glad I didn’t drink. Didn’t even take a sip. God is watching over me. Talk to Dan and tell him what happened and that he will have to drink the wine soon now, since it’s already open. Grateful for him, and for God.
11:00pm: Go to bed and sleep peacefully.
10:00am: Awake, clear headed, hangover free. Excited to finish the office today. Want to go shopping and buy some fun decor.
1:oopm: At World Market. Such cute stuff. Wait, is that a cat statue? What is that? Does that say Riesling? Oh, it’s a wine bottle shaped like a cat. That’s awesome. I have to have that. But can I buy wine without drinking it? You could buy it and pour it out right away. Keep shopping, think about it.
1:30pm: I really want that cat wine. I can buy it, it will be fine. I’m doing it. Ok, head to checkout. Get to counter and wait. On counter are little airport bottles of Kahlua. Oh shit. Right behind me there is a full display of airport sized liquor bottles – rum, baileys, chambord, vodka. Oh my god. OMG. Who does that? Who puts mini liquor bottles on display right at checkout? Why is alcohol so glorified? It’s Sunday for gosh sake. A year ago you would have been in heaven. You would have bought 5 or 6 of them and hid them in your purse. Not now. But. You could buy one. Just one won’t kill you. It may not even affect you, you could just have one to get rid of these crazy cravings from this weekend. Just one and no one would know. No, turn around! Don’t look! But they are so cute. So small. Krista – you know you can’t just have one, if you have one you’ll buy more and then you will never finish the office. It’s 2:00 in the afternoon if you start drinking now you will be ruined by 5pm and useless. You’ll regret it. Fine, ok no. Hi lady at check out. Yes, that is all for me. My ID? Oh right, I’m buying cat wine. Say “I don’t even want the wine, I just want the cat.” She looks at me funny. Ok, get out of here.
1:45pm: In car. Ahhhh, that was close. Why am I craving it so much this weekend? I haven’t felt it this strong in weeks. Stupid airport bottles. Whoever invented those should be shot. It’s sunny and beautiful out and you will be awake and productive all day.
2:30pm: Ok, let’s get started. Do I want that Riesling? Maybe. For some reason white wine just doesn’t sound great right now. It was $9.99. It’s probably not even great anyway, it’s cat wine. It would probably give me a headache. If I open it, it will be obvious. Not worth it. Ok, I’m an adult.
5:00pm: Time to put everything back in office. Where should I put cat? He will look great on that shelf. He feels so good in my hands. So heavy. There’s wine in there. I don’t even want it.
9:00pm: Feels so good to have office done. Thank goodness you didn’t give in to cravings this weekend. You did it.
6:00am. I can’t believe I almost ruined my 63 days. Thank you, thank you, thank you. You are so much stronger than you think.
It’s this thinking above that convinced me that I just needed to stop drinking altogether. Any sort of moderation means that I would think like this every single day, and that is unbearable. I was a mess this past weekend. But. I got through it. Most days I don’t even think about drinking anymore, and for that I am so grateful. But I’ve accepted that fact that I may have days or weeks that challenge me. I can’t control my cravings and I can’t really control my thoughts. What I can control is my reaction and every time I come out on the other side, still sober, I feel stronger and more confident. It’s a battle, but I’m winning.