Yesterday was a flurry of encouraging messages from sober bloggers about my one year sober anniversary. I mentioned it to my teen daughter who was visiting from the university. She said, “Wow, good job Mom.”, with a slight rise in her voice. My boyfriend of 5 years sent me a message that said that he didn’t know many people who could accomplish that. Those were my only real life reactions. Not exactly the parade and party I thought this feat deserved. It was like this giant thing in my life was just that, big only in my life. After thinking about it, I have really made not drinking no big deal to the people around me. I barely mentioned it to anyone and when I did, it was in passing and not dwelled upon.
I realize that my mind was trying to gear me up for failure. “Poor me. Nobody cares that I spent the last 365 days working diligently on making my life better. I’m not the center of the world’s attention.” I haven’t had the urge to drink but I can see that my twisted mind is setting up the scene.
In doing some sober blog reading, I noticed a pattern. I seemed to be focusing on the bloggers who had a recent relapse. What I took away from those blogs is that one drink is not worth a year of sobriety. I’ve also considered the possibility of attending my first AA meeting. I’ll have to think about that a bit more.
Yesterday marked 8 months alcohol free. I didn’t even remember until I went to bed. My bedtime routine is to meditate by thinking about all the ways I am blessed. I fall asleep thankful that I’m sober and wake up grateful not to have a hangover.
I had some rough spots last week. Stress is my trigger to make me long for the numbness of a black out drunk. While having lunch with my 35 years sober boss/AA touting step father, something made me decide to tell him that I had 8 months of not drinking. He nodded and said, “great”. I didn’t make it seem like it was a big deal because part of me still thinks that I’ll drink again even though I know it’s poison that would eventually kill me. That’s pretty messed up.
The boyfriend has been trying to stop drinking. He’s successful for about 21 days and then decides he doesn’t have a problem and goes back to drinking. I’ve gotten much better at keeping his problems his and my problems my own. I’m having a hard enough time fighting my own battles.
Five months after my last drink and I still haven’t told many people that I’m not drinking. Even if I have told them, I haven’t given them all the horrible details. I just mention in passing that I haven’t had a drink for a long time. I’ve been thinking about why I haven’t told anyone. I hate admitting that I don’t tell anyone because I still have hope that I can someday have a drink. I know this is irrational and downright ridiculous. I’ve been down Moderation Road and it wasn’t a pretty trip. I end up fixated on how many more I have allowed myself. If I can stop myself, I spend the rest of the night in a pissy mood.
Here comes the really stupid part… my step father of 36 of my 45 years is a recovering alcoholic. He’s been sober for 35 years. He’s helped hundreds of people by sponsoring them in AA. That’s not the dumb part. My not telling him that I have a problem is.
My step dad is also my boss. He is the one person in this world that I’ve spent most of my life trying to impress. I never felt loved by him as a child. I was the kid who told him, “You’re not my dad”. I was a bratty nine year old who was devastated by my parent’s divorce and my mother’s remarriage two months later. I never gave him a chance and he never gave me one until I started working for him. So, I’m hesitant to disappoint him. Not to mention that I don’t want him to think I’ve been a bad employee.
I’m not sure how much longer I will wait to talk to him. I really don’t prescribe to the whole 12 Step process. I have no desire to sit in a room with other people judging me. He is a die hard believer that the only way to get sober and stay that way is with AA. I’ve had that pounded into my brain since I was nine. So, I think I’ll keep my secret for now.