Day 88: Whilst I still expect to face challenging days again in the future I must admit that after a tough first 50-60 days the desire to drink alcohol has become very rare of late. I get to an evening or a weekend and even if I’m stressed or tired, it isn’t the solution I think about.
As I continue to reflect about my behaviour and choices in the past I thought I’d share some of my negative experiences with alcohol to reinforce why choosing a sober life is the right life for me…
1. Spending the night in a police cell because I allowed my drunken anger to get the better of me on a night out
2. Waking up in hospital after running down an icy alley at the end of a 12 hour drinking session, slipping and knocking myself out
3. Similar to the above, waking up in hospital after slipping in a club and cracking my head on a shelf
4. Drinking to excess on a Sunday afternoon with friends and passing out in the toilet cubicle of a bar. Bouncers lay me outside of the bar on concrete in freezing weather. I developed hypothermia and hospital was the outcome (again)
5. Feeling unwell in a taxi on way home from night out, taxi pulled over and ditched me and my mate. I was spewing and couldn’t walk. Ambulance picked me up from the side of the road and I sobered up in that place again (I loved hospitals!)
6. Binge drinking so much on my first lad’s holiday abroad to Tenerife on the first night that I pretty much wasted the whole next day and night in bed. What a waste!
7. Returning from a mid-week heavy drink at the football with my mates to a full on verbal attack at my concerned wife. I then started trashing my study room. My wife went to her parents in the early hours of the morning
8. Drinking so much on a trip away with a work colleague that I took exception to a group of lads on the street near my hotel and swung a punch at one of them for pretty much no reason. The work colleague had to use his best truce techniques to avoid a brawl and get me back to the hotel
9. Drinking far too much at the village pub Quiz Night so I’d be feeling rotten and unproductive the following day at work
10. Drinking a bottle of whisky in secret in the house and later that evening feeling unwell. My wife thought I was genuinely ill and I lied and played along to mask my secret drinking. She found the bottle the next morning
11. Drinking three bottles of red wine at the local pub one lunchtime watching the football and then going to a funfair with my wife and 2yr old daughter. I can hardly remember the day.
12. Being in a taxi in London on my own at night (very drunk) and on way back to my hotel I got paranoid the taxi driver was going to hurt me so I jumped out the taxi as it slowed towards traffic lights – then did a runner
….so you get the jist. Some of those things happened about 15 years ago but some in the last year. I have many more examples I could share but it’s all the same theme. I think it is important for me to remember what I was sometimes like under the influence – to keep me motivated to stay away from alcohol. I had many happy experiences with booze such as my Stag doo, Wedding Day, City breaks with the wife, date nights, house parties and family meals in restaurants.
My problem was the lack of self control once I started and also my attitude towards others. I was a selfish drinker and would be defensive if challenged. I had a very arrogant view that I’ll do what I want because I’m an adult who makes my own decisions. Not so bad if you were a bachelor but I’m a married father of two young girls with a career and mortgage.
I found out a few days back that the actor Rob Lowe (who stars in the latest Boxset I’m binging on Netflix – Parks & Recreation) had struggles with alcohol and drugs – and has been sober since 1990. Now that is inspiring. To be clean and happy for so long. For now I’m taking it one day at a time. 88 days for me and I’m proud of every day so far.