8 Days, No Alcohol

August 23, 2017

Ah, stress!  Any other day before this challenge, I would be calming down the pounding in my chest with a few drinks and maybe a cupcake or two for good measure. Today started normally. I had a good morning run (despite the humidity) and traffic was not too bad on the way to work. But after completing almost all of the day’s tasks without too much difficulty, the majority of my afternoon became mired in an asinine bureaucratic nightmare that I could not resolve despite my best efforts. It really got me wound up.

Not being able to drown the adrenaline in calming alcohol is a new feeling. Any other day, I would already be a few drinks in and feeling better (at least temporarily). I was seriously tempted to suspend the challenge for the afternoon and maybe just a beer or two. And then (in a devil voice) I told myself, I could start right back on the challenge tomorrow. Maybe not even count the day. I was under stress, right? A couple of drinks would not hurt in the big scheme of things, right? After all, I was surely already getting healthier, so why not take a break just for a couple hours?

Because, as the cliché goes, it really is a slippery slope. If I stop the challenge now, I will have failed and would need to start over. If I lied to myself and somehow avoided “counting” the slip-up, then it would be easier to do again and again my “One year, no alcohol” challenge would have no integrity. In either case, I would find the fact that I seriously wanted to quit drinking for a year but couldn’t to indicate that I have a bigger problem with alcohol than I believed.

So I resisted. I will do my utmost to continue to resist. And somehow already the idea that I have been able to resist has made me feel less stressed and more in control. Hopefully, tomorrow will be a better day. I wanted more temptation this week and I have so far gotten it.

Thank you for reading this.

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