It is day three of not drinking. Technically it has been four days since my first post, but I messed up a bit and therefore its 3 actual sober days. As Professor X eloquently stated, “Just because someone stumbles and loses their path, doesn’t mean they are lost forever.”
I took another step today by telling my former drinking buddy about my choice. I say former drinking buddy not because my sobriety has removed this from my life, but because he decided he needed to “clean up his life” and therefore he removed me and all of our friends from college from his life (completely). So when I spoke to him I expected some sort of understanding statement at the very least. Instead I was presented with the same child I knew so well in college.
Me – “Well I’ve actually decided to stop drinking.”
Him – “Huh wow, That’s boring… but ok.”
ARE YOU KIDDING ME?! I spent 5 years of my life with this person (and unfortunately in love with this person) only to be told earlier this summer that he couldn’t hang out with me because his mom (he is 26… his mom should have nothing to do with it) said I was a bad influence. Now that I decide that I’m not going to drink anymore he wants to shoot me down? This guy was obviously not the model character to begin with, but I really was expecting something more.
It’s funny how scared people are of sobriety. Talk about showing True Colors. To be continued…
Well that was not the most convincing display of sobriety I’ve ever produced. My failure mostly lies in wanting to impress the family of my boyfriend (let’s call him . . . Hanz). It was a gathering of hip young people with tattoos and lip piercings drinking IPAs and pretending to enjoy them. It was the sort of group where one’s standing was determined by the size of your beard or the obscurity of your record collection; certainly not the sort of group to be impressed by a newly reformed alcoholic with no grand and telling story of their struggles through life with alcohol.
I tried the “only-water” technique, and noticed I was quickly being ostracized as The Non-Drinker of the group. There were no soda options either that could mask my sobriety. So I chose the socially acceptable option of grabbing a beer and holding onto it taking small sips so as to not feel any effect. I even drank lite beer so it was less tasty and therefore I would be less likely to drink it.
Why did I feel embarrassed to not be drinking? And why did I let those feelings push me to drink, even for a second?
On a more positive note, I did take all of the alcohol in my house and dump it out; 13 beers and ¼ of a bottle of rum (but who’s counting). It was actually therapeutic in a stressful kind of way. I felt, to a lesser extent, like a hoarder who was being forced to choose between their beloved collections of used up napkins and their family. The beer and rum smelled great and I didn’t realize it then, but I was holding my breath the entire time is went down the drain. With that in mind it would seem that the choice to stop drinking is a good one for me. We shall see how Hanz handles this change… To be continued
No one believes me.
The first person I told was my dad. He laughed.
“I’m going to stop drinking.”
Is that really a ridiculous question worth laughing at or is it the concept of me not drinking that moves people to laughter? I suppose the fact that on the first day of this adventure I happen to be quite hung-over may cause some people to doubt my resolve, which us understandable. At the height of my drinking I could drink half a bottle of vodka on my own in one night. I could drink a bottle of wine and then get up to get another (by myself). I have since stopped drinking that much (and never alone), but it’s not enough. When I do drink, I don’t stop. I don’t drink because I like the taste. I don’t drink because I have social anxiety. I drink to get drunk and I do it often. I think it makes me funnier or more attractive, but what it really does is it takes away the impulse not to say or do the things in my head.
My father once described his alcoholism like this. “I never did anything when I was drunk that I was proud of the next day.” That is the truest statement about drinking I have ever heard. I drink and suddenly men are all attractive, and my ex needs an immediate update on my emotional stability (via text). It’s a neurotoxin and it affects every aspect of my life. I’m in a relationship with a wonderful man and I’ve realized that our relationship is based on drinking. We met over drinks and drink every time we hang out. I have already forgotten many dates and wake up at his place with no memory of how I got there. He is a wonderful man, but he doesn’t know me. Not really. He knows the version of me that is drunk and outgoing and flirty. When I’m not drunk I’m not very affectionate, and I feel guilty about that, so I drink to feel emotions for him when really I have no more emotions to give. I spent them all on my last heartbreak and I have no idea how to get them back. Therefore this endeavor to end my drinking will most likely include the end of this relationship, but we will cross that bridge when we come to it.
I’m tired of waking up with no memory of the night before.
I’m tired of hangovers.
I’m tired of hating myself the next day when I do remember the night’s events.
I’m tired of spending my paychecks in the liquor aisle.
I’m tired of risking my life when I drive home.
I’m tired of skipping meals so I have calories for going out.
So now, on the lighter side, I will now begin chronicling my new life without drinking. The above points are the things I hate about my drinking. It is my goal to eliminate ever one of them from my life. It will not be easy or fun, but it will be better.
Tonight I am going out with my boyfriend to meet his sister who lives in Chicago. It is the first of many challenges I will face on this journey, but certainly not the toughest. As I mentioned before I am quite hung-over and the thought of drinking (or opening my eyes for that matter) is simply nauseating. It will, however, be an experiment in how people react to me not drinking. I am supposed to be making new friends and impressing my boyfriend’s family. This is a difficult task even when smoothed over by alcohol, so now with it just being me; we shall see how it goes.
Wish me luck. To be continued…
The word “niche” is pronounced NEE-SH not NI-TCH. I know that makes me sound like a snob, but there are so many things about the English language that people repeatedly and intentionally mistake. I understand if it’s due to a lack of exposure to the correct pronunciation. That is a very common issue and one I have complete sympathy for. I am not the most cultured person in the world and I’m sure I misuse and even misinterpret words all the time. The difference is that once I realize that I’ve made the mistake, I change it. Here are a few other words that are either mispronounced, misused, or are not actual words.
- Orientate – “I have orientate myself to the idea of speaking English properly.”
- Orientate is not a word. The correct word is orient. This one bothers me because it is used (or rather misused) in professional settings all the time. People one is supposed to respect and learn from will say orientate and I can’t stand it. I would like to add that though orientate can be found online as a real word, this is the result of it being so terribly misused for years that oxford simply gave up and conceded to the stubborn stupidity of the general population.
- Acks – “Let me acks you a question.”
- No you may not acks me anything. If you would like to ask me something, by all means please do, but your first question should be “How do I pronounce the work ask?”
- Nah – “Have you seen Jimmy yet today?” “Nah”
- At what point did nah replace no. When saying nah, you are left at the end of your statement with your mouth gaping open looking like you just had major dental surgery and you can’t physically contract your jaw. No is far more decisive and is also an actual word.
- Inneresting – “I find it very inneresting that you don’t understand what I’m trying to say.”
- This is a simple case of having a lazy mouth. You have all of the syllables, and you’re obviously in a conversation that requires thought. All you have to do is pronounce that sharp ‘t’ sound to make your point interesting, as opposed to distracting.
I would now like to add some fun words to your vocabulary that will impress (or alienate) your peers.
- Jargon – special words or expressions that are used by a particular profession or group and are difficult for others to understand; “It’s important to understand the particular jargon of the business where you work.”
- I love using this term. It’s not very common, but also recognizable enough that people know what I’m trying to convey. No matter what profession one is trying to learn, using the term jargon always makes it sound fancy.
- Pontificate – express one’s opinions in a way considered annoyingly pompous and dogmatic; “The principal of the school will often pontificate over the loud speaker about his many accomplishments as a young student.”
- I find that this term is incredibly useful in a few ways. First, the person who is pontificating usually is not as well read as they would like people to think, and therefore often does not know the meaning of pontificate. Second, they usually use many, if not all, of the words on my previous list, and therefore I find more pleasure in using such terms to describe them.
- Dodecahedron – a three-dimensional shape having twelve plane faces, in particular a regular solid figure with twelve equal pentagonal faces.
- I know that this is not a word that many people would have the fortune to come across, but I find that ,as impractical it is to use in a sentence, I love that I have it as part of my vernacular. I also love saying nonagon; a nine sided polygon; equal in both tonal and verbal quality.
Again, these are words that one should be aware of, either to avoid, or to embrace. I’m not writing this to be annoying or snobby. I am genuinely concerned about future generations who are being taught by idiots.
Whether it was a month, 5 months, or five years, all relationships have an effect on you. They change your perspective no matter what and will alter how you react to all future romantic situations going forward. As someone who has struggled (for years) with getting over relationships, I have a few tips that might help.
- If it’s over, then let it be over. Do not go back. EVER. This usually happens with relationships that were long and intense. It is my firm belief that once a relationship ends, it is nearly impossible to try and repair it. The result will be a worse relationship that is comprised of the tattered remains of the previous relationship.
- Don’t remain friends for at least a year. You cannot be friends with someone you were in a relationship with right away. All that will happen is you’ll try really hard to not picture them naked and will fail miserably. Also, friends talk to each other, and you should not talk to them about your new single life. They will pretend to listen and will slowly be dying inside and becoming more and more bitter until it’s their turn to talk. Then you’ll be sorry you ever shared that personal information, because now they are telling you all about this other person. You can try not to compare yourself to this new person, but you will fail. Now you’re both upset and can no longer enjoy your meal.
- Take up a new hobby. It is likely that when you were together you did everything as a unit. Now that you are single, you still have the same interests and therefore everything you do reminds you of them. Additionally, since you always used to do the same things, you’ll try and maintain your previous hobbies and instead you’ll be entirely too distracted to even try an enjoy yourself. You will go to the weekly meet-up and dress as if its laundry day and all you had to wear was your best outfit. Your face will be a mix of nervous anxiety as your eyes dash around every time someone makes a noise or a door opens and being overly calm and you try desperately to look your best from every angle just in case they are watching. The best thing to do is try a new sport, or pick up pottery making. Anything that keeps you occupied, while also avoiding the familiar.
- Distance yourself from friends with a bipartisan opinion of the relationship. I don’t mean that you have to get rid of all mutual acquaintances, but it would be wise to limit your visits with mutual friends to once every two weeks (max). They will only remind you of good times that were had when your life wasn’t in shambles. You also will have more to talk about if you space out your visits so as not to realize that the basis of your entire friendship was that relationship.
- Don’t date until you are ready to date. Just because you are now single, doesn’t mean you have to immediately jump into the dating game again. All you’re going to do is go on a bunch of impulse or pity dates that you don’t enjoy and compare them to the newly ended relationship. Of course they aren’t going to get the inside joke you had about the creep Wednesday night bartender, and it’s not fair to anyone involved to expect as much. Many people will encourage you to “get out there” and “meet new people”. These are terrible ideas given to you by people who are either in a committed relationship, or who are similarly miserable and want nothing more than to make themselves feel validated by reviling in your misery.
These are simply tips based on my observations, but for your own safety I recommend giving some serious thought to the above information.
“Awesome” is one of those words that the more you say it, the less meaning it tends to have. Interestingly enough, it is also one of the most used words in the English language right now. To further understand this phenomenon, I did a simple Google search and these were the results.
Awesome – extremely impressive or daunting; inspiring great admiration, apprehension, or fear:
“The awesome power of the atomic bomb”
I must admit, my favorite part of the entire search is the sentence they chose to use as an example.
“The awesome power of the atomic bomb.”
It’s not even a complete sentence. Someone [I assume the Google gods] chose to write that purely to stress that for something to qualify as ‘awesome’, it does not have to be positive. (That or they really love atomic bombs, and should probably be investigated for ties to North Korea.)
Below are the synonyms provided by Google, and they are all superior and far more situation specific.
breathtaking · awe-inspiring · magnificent · wonderful · amazing · stunning · staggering · imposing · stirring · impressive · formidable · fearsome · dreaded · mind-boggling · mind-blowing · jaw-dropping · excellent · marvelous · wondrous · awful
Please review all of your posts, tweets, snaps, texts, pins, and whatever other social media verbs there you have. When you do this, try to count the number of times you said “awesome”. Now replace every “awesome” with the superior synonym.
For more options please click the link below.
I was born 3 miles from Wrigley Field. Every summer my dad would wake me up in the morning with that look in his eye that meant “baseball.” We would get up early and take a 15 minutes bus ride on the Addison 152 to be first in line to get our tickets. “Bueller seats” he called them. I didn’t know what that referenced at the time, but I knew that it meant lots of foul balls and me yelling “ALOOOOUUU” every time we got an out off of third base. Our uniform was jerseys, caps, and (of course) our mitts. If anyone was going to catch that foul ball it was going to be us.
By the top of the second we had three hotdogs and a diet soda between the two of us. Before I was born my dad would have been a few beers in at this point, however since then he had stopped drinking and now consumed diet soda as if it were the real deal. He told me stories about each player that would come up to bat; talked about their past teams and what their stats meant. I learned all about the announcers and how they came to be at Wrigley; particularly Ron “Ronny” Santo. We were a couple of goofballs trading Harry Carry impressions between innings and betting on all of the trivia questions we could. At the 7th inning stretch we got our exercise by standing, singing, and motioning to the strange creatures who forgot to remove their caps. By the final innings, we were ready for the ultimate indulgence; a Frosty Malt Cup. Our eyes relentlessly searched for the man with the blue bag and the yellow cup in his hand. As soon as I was old enough to count I was counting the number of malt vendors and calculating the likelihood of one coming around at the right time. As soon as we flagged one down I knew exactly what is next. Delicious chocolate malt with a Popsicle stick for a spoon. This was baseball luxury at its finest and none of the delicious concoction would escape my grasp, no matter how much I needed to get on my face first. The game was coming to an end and we could spot the nonbelievers. They decided that they have seen enough to know the outcome of the game and therefore don’t need to watch the final pitch. We knew better. You never know what will happen when a Cub steps up to the plate.
I learned more about life than baseball through going to those games. I learned about rain delays, extra innings, chin music, and how a little base hit can make or break the game. Win or Lose, those summers spent at Wrigley were some of the best I’ve ever had, and no matter what, they will always be with me.