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If I am really honest with myself..

Old 04-20-2010, 11:23 AM
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If I am really honest with myself..

I made it to 105 days last Sunday. My initial goal was 100 days to see how things would go. I am proud that I did make it to 105 days without alcohol.

I was traveling for work and met a friend that I had not seen in 10 years. We had dinner together and we ordered a glass of wine each. So, I had one glass of wine with dinner. That was it. The moment hung in the air. I did not have guilt feelings or a craving for it really. I thought of it as a test, a choice I was making to see what has changed exactly for me. I did not go into it saying, " Only one glass!" I wanted to see the effect and if I had control over it. Of course, I had the learn the lesson all over again.

Now, when we speak of psychological addiction versus physical addiction (they say that the phyical symptoms stop much sooner in abstenience)- I can tell you that yes, I really wanted that second glass. Even after all this time, yes, I still wanted it. That feeling has not changed, and now I know for certain that it will never change for me. I enjoyed the taste of the one glass and wanted another. Was it the taste? Yes, it was fabulous. Was it the feeling it created in my brain that has been absent for over three months? Well, maybe. It hit me a little hard after only a few sips. If I did have another it probably would have made me feel ill, but I still wanted that second glass! I wanted the taste of it again, and the feeling for it was so strong. I was not thinking of all the things I have learned here on this site and in all of my readings. These teachings left me in a heartbeat as I thought of the second glass. There was no contemplation, I wanted it period.

Now, why did I not continue is the important question. If I am completely honest with myself, I did not order the second glass because my friend is not a drinker and she was content to have that one glass. I would have ordered the second glass, no question about it, if she wanted another. So I said no. Now, after dinnner and when that warm feeling started to dissipate, I was content to order my usual green tea and I was fine with it instead of the second glass of wine. The issue is that I still felt that pang and pull to have that second glass right after the first. If that is not addiction, I don't know what is.

So, after dinner, I went back to my room. To test myself yet again, I checked out the minibar. I could have easily opened the minibar and gotten loaded back in my hotel, but I didn't. I didn't even want to. There were tons of choices in there too. I didn't want that beer afterwards or the whiskey in the bar. My choices, in fact, are now mostly tea. Maybe the addiction has shifted to tea? Quite possibly. Was I really in control of the experience? Yes and No.
I woke up the next day and the following days with no cravings whatsoever. I didn't crave the taste of the wine at all. It was over.

So, what did I learn in this little experiment? That there are a lot of other people out there who really can have that one glass of wine, who can enjoy it and not obsess over it, who don't have an issue with drive to order another. I have learned again, that I am unfortunately not one of those people. I really wish I was though.

Good news is that it was one glass, and now I know that the psychological addiction will always be there. I had to learn the lesson all over again. If I was in different company (someone who loved to drink), it could have been a disaster. Would I have stopped after 2 glasses? I honestly don't know. There was a time period after the first glass where I would have said hell yes. After having the hot tea, I would have said no. My control is sporatic. Normal people do not obsess over alcohol like this and the choice to have another.

What I learned is that addiction never goes away. It is always there. It is the choices we make that enable us to overcome it. My test was a failure, and not meant to be repeated by anyone here on this website. I wrote this to help others who are contemplating having that one glass and having the euphoria of making it to 100 days, 200 days, 1 year, etc., thinking they have a handle on it and can go back to that one glass. For me, it worked because I did have one glass but then again it did not work because I could have easily gone in a different direction depending on who I was with that evening. Come to think of it, having that glass was not that enjoyable because I found my mind thinking about it too much, instead of just enjoying the elegance of that one glass of wine. That will always make me sad. But I would rather be sad like that then have no control over my choices. Sad truth, but a correct one.

I wanted to share with everyone who has made a commitment to sobriety that this is what can happen, and most likely will happen, if you go back to thinking you are in control of it. It is better to stay sober.

Today is Day 2. Thank god I have no cravings whatsoever.
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Old 04-20-2010, 11:47 AM
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Thanks for posting. Your honesty is refreshing.

I would not have stopped at one glass of wine but would have drank untill I passed out. For me there will never be any doubt about thinking I can drink moderately. I never wished to ever drink like that. I loved the taste, look, smell, effect of booze way too much to only stop at one. No way, I couldn't get enough of that stuff man, I liked it way too much. paradise for me would have been a dessert island with an unlimited amount of booze on tap 24/7 and my music. I would say supermodels but they wouldn't know how to drink properly! lol. Besides booze was all that mattered once I took a drink. But life ain't like that unfortunately, haha. There are consequences of actions.

I know I will always be an alcoholic in that I would only ever want to drink booze and take drugs so that I'm totally smashed. Then I wouldn;t be able to physically stop drinking once i started, first thing I would do when i wake up from passing out is reach for a drink to sort me out. I would be dead before long. Even more so after being in recovery. Besides alcohol/drugs don't bother me anymore. I am indifferent about them but have a healthy respect for booze. I ain't fearful of it but at the same time know that I'l only ever be one drink away from losing eveything. One drink would mean I'm back in the game again, life is so much simpler not being in the game anymore.

Fairplay for stopping at one though and I guess you haven't really lost anything really but maybe gained a full diagnoses of your alcoholic condition. Nice one on the 100+ days too, you haven;t lost that time if you use it to help your new found sobriety.

All The best
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Old 04-20-2010, 11:55 AM
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Interesting post. Glad that you were able to have one glass
That is not a test I will ever do again. My alcoholic mind took over and a few weeks after that one beer test I was off and running. "I have control". Yeah right down hill from there on- shakes in the morning. I was gone.
I know for me that I can never do that test again.
Thanks
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Old 04-20-2010, 12:33 PM
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I know from experience, and from reading about alcoholism, that if we stop for long periods of time, and then start again, we tend to pick right up where we left off. Back when I had my 200+ days of sobriety, after that weekend of having "just wine", once we got back home, I was right back to a 12 pack a day, within about a weeks time.

There was no "tapering up" or "wading in". I jumped right back into the deep end. I wish I could remember exactly what year that happened in...let me think a minute...

I was sober from sometime in September of 2005, until late March of 2006. I don't remember the start date anymore...I do know that since March of 2006, so a little over 4 years, I have only had a day or two at a time when I have not drank. For a long time it was beer, about a year ago I switched over to vodka because it packed more of a punch, and the pint bottles of the strong stuff were easier to hide.

Wow. Just typing that out, and realizing that for the past 1,490 days or so, I have just a handful of days when I drank nothing at all. That is just plain insanity.
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Old 04-20-2010, 12:47 PM
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I know this post has helped many, many people on SR and its awesome to see what you took away from that moment. I too would obsess over the 1 glass of wine. Could I stick to 1 glass? Maybe for that night, but each time would get harder and harder and the slavery would ensue. I also know I wouldn't want to buy 1 small bottle of wine. I would want the box of wine. I haven't changed in respect to alcoholism but I have changed in respect to what I have learned from being sober. Good for you for taking the time to be a teacher today. I mean that sincerely.
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Old 04-20-2010, 12:55 PM
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GreenerPastures ....
welcome back Glad you are making a fresh start.
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Old 04-20-2010, 02:21 PM
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Thanks for a great post Greener Pastures!
I realized after many attempts at "controlled" drinking that I usually lost the control sooner or later.

But....something else happened, too. I noticed that I felt just as miserable after 1/2 glass of wine as after 1/2 box of wine.

It wasn't just that the allergy was activated and I always craved more, instantly, it was that the depression, the anger, the wild mood swings were set into action, instantly, after just a couple of sips.
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Old 04-20-2010, 02:33 PM
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I've bookmarked this. I wouldn't have been able to stop like that. Might have been able to stop during dinner then ran as fast as possible up to the minibar :P
Shows how far you've come. Excellent post
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Old 04-20-2010, 02:34 PM
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Seems you learned a lot that evening !
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Old 04-20-2010, 03:03 PM
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If I am really honest with MYself, I am not sure what I would do after that first one. I can only speculate on the context. I imagine I would feel pretty tipsy from that one glass. Since I had a long habit of NOT drinking in front of other people or going past the ONE drink (so that I could be in adequate condition during the social visit and get home effectively to drink on my own the way I wanted), I suppose I would probably stop with the one drink and be self-conscious about my behavior. What would happen on the way home and within range of a store is the question. If I didn't get some that night, maybe I would have the option on my mind for the next day or two, and would probably get more for at home by the time the week was out, and then a very similar pattern would be there all over again. This is part of why I have been able to stay away from it, I guess; the fact that I know the outcome, easy ("been there/done that, baby").

Looking at where my thoughts are at this stage, my 5 months, I am not interested in experimenting; thoughts about drinking do creep in, as I have mentioned along the way, but not from an experimenting, "let's see if I can handle this like a normal person and have my cake and eat it too" kind of standpoint. I know it would be like trying to make do without oven mits - not a bad analogy, since I used to burn myself once in a while, being such an ingenious and capable drinker.

It's possible I would press the restart button quitting again - as in humanly possible - but it's safest for me to bear in mind the length of time I used to drink without stopping, and how likely is it...barely. It ISN'T FLAMING WORTH going there, ha ha. I'll stick with that for now, and for today, in fact, as we always say.
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Old 04-20-2010, 03:23 PM
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[QUOTE=Horselover;2574816]I know this post has helped many, many people on SR and its awesome to see what you took away from that moment./QUOTE]

Count me in that group. Just my psychological reaction to reading the OP's post forced me to stop and think. LOL

I've never been a "drink to passing out" drinker, but I know that having one makes it harder to avoid having the next. It's no different than quitting smoking that way. You have that voice in your head that tries to convince you that one will make things easier, take the edge off and help you to go on. Alcohol, like nicotine, lies and lies.

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Old 04-20-2010, 04:06 PM
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Old 04-20-2010, 06:21 PM
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I have to say that the pull to drink more was very strong. I am really proud that yes, I did say no to the second glass, but the NO was hanging in the balance. All I needed was a little push from someone to say.. lets have another, and I would have been all over that. This is what scares me. I have control, but dependent on the situation and company. I don't want to live like that, and I will always be that way. My brain is wired to wanting alcohol in a crazy way. I can live with that. I realized I can't live and do the occasional glass of wine. It will, in the long run, always turn into 2, and back to the 1 bottle a night wine fest I used to have with myself to escape life and my problems. Just not worth it.

It is good to know there are individuals out there that are like me too. It is good to learn that I am not alone in this.

Thank you to everyone who read my post and I really hope it helped those who toyed with the idea of one glass theory after months of sobriety.
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Old 04-20-2010, 06:37 PM
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