Thursday, August 01, 2013

Drink me to sleep

After an alcohol-free month, today is the day I am finally allowed to have a drink… yet I find myself inexplicably disinclined to do so.

Which is odd. Because I have been willing the 1st of August to roll around with more intensity than can be considered natural for anyone over the age of eight not waiting for Christmas morning. Seriously, this shit was difficult. Shamefully difficult. And at times the only thing stopping me from throwing in the teabag and downing some Pinot was the knowledge that (thanks to a StickK campaign) my best friend stood to gain $80 from my failure.

I quickly established wine-aversion tactics: soda water in wine glasses, late-night popcorn, motivational books, and a blossoming relationship with a Breville juicer. But none of these was able to replicate alcohol’s singular ability to quickly and effortlessly dissolve stress and emotional pain. And contrary to what I’d expected, the final week was by far the hardest; each day growing more torturous as the prospect of a freshly opened bottle of wine loomed. Whether this was as a result of the pressure of accumulated stress or the excitement of a difficult experience coming to an end, I don’t know. But I do know I came closest to surrender five days short of the finish line.

Which is why I find it so disconcerting that I now sit here, at ten o’clock at night, with two bottles of organic wine freshly purchased by my boyfriend sitting on the kitchen counter, and feel… reluctance.


Because during my 31 days of sobriety I accomplished things I’d been putting off for years. Things that seemed too difficult, or scary, or futile.

I wrote a funding grant for a theatre show, applied for inclusion in an Arts program, started a weekly eNewsletter, got published on artsHub, arranged reviewer tickets for a theatre show in Sydney, contacted a top acting agency about representation, registered a theatre company, and planned my stepson’s Communion. And as I write out this list I realise there may be something to this non-drinking thing after all.

So right now I feel as if I’m standing between my old self and new and I’m not quite sure which way to go.

Perhaps a glass of wine will help.