Monday, April 5, 2010

One Year Of Living Without Alcohol

A year ago today I woke up exhausted. I spent the weekend with some friends in Palm Springs and the moment I woke up that morning, I knew that I couldn't live this way anymore.

I was tired of the party. Tired of being tired.  Tired of having a great time, only to feel horrible the day after.  It was time to do something about it.  I decided to live my life without alcohol.  Most of my social interactions with friends involved having glass of wine or a meet up with a cocktail.  It's the stress reliever for the end of a hard day, a toast to celebrate an achievement, the relaxer curled up with a book or bath, a compliment to a nice meal, and the list can go on and on.  Have a bad day? Let's go out for a drink! Did you do something you are proud of? It's celebration time with some champagne!  You get the idea.

When I decided that I had enough, there were always doubts in my head and I am sure there were doubts with some friends that thought I couldn't do it.  The thing I had going for me is that I am pretty competitive so I wanted to "win," so to speak.  I didn't want the doubts to win or the doubters to give me a, "I didn't think you could do it" thought.

As far as roads go, this wasn't an easy one to take.  However, over time it's the best decision I have made.  I've learned a lot over the past year.  I don't talk about it much here since I don't want to bore you with the details and there are much more interesting things to blog about, but I did write about my experience for the first 150 days HERE.

I would have to say that one of the hardest parts about this decision is the social aspect.  People like to come together as a group and have a glass of wine and that is perfectly normal.  I have been the odd one out on many occasions and it's difficult for me because I want everyone to feel comfortable around me and at the same time, I don't want to be a bore to be around.  At first I received a lot of questions and drilling on my decision not to drink.  All I wanted to do was fit in and not be noticed.  This wasn't the case.  At the beginning I drank a lot of sugar free red bull and everyone loved telling me how that was going to kill me, as they sipped their cocktail.

What a difference a year makes.  I am thankful for the opportunity to live this life and feel everything there is to feel. It truly is a wonderful life.

In case you on the fence, here are 11 Benefits of not drinking:
1.) You remember conversations from the night before
2.) Savings of about $5,000 a year or more (alcohol, bar food, aspirin, etc.)
3.) I lost 35 pounds (say good bye to your booze boobs)
4.) You will strengthen your relationship with the people that mean the most to you
5.) You get to go anywhere you want at anytime without thinking, "who's going to drive?"
6.) You will gain a sense of freedom that you never had before
7.) The possibilities in life are endless
8.) You will have meaningful conversations with people and attract the good ones into your life
9.) No regrets and no apologies from when you did something or said something while intoxicated
10.) You will do things you didn't think about doing before
11.) You won't be so tired all of the time

So, it's just me.  The same me. I am still plugging along here in this life and soaking up all of the moments and sharing them here with you.  I look forward to the next adventure.  Thank you for all of your support during my continued journey.  Oh yeah, I picked up my little point and shoot camera and took some pictures in the last few months.  You can see some pictures HERE. I hope you become a fan.

A big thank you for all of my family and friends that supported me on this decision.  Now it's back to dreaming of an airstream life. I look forward to sharing more soon.


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