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Back from a vacation with no drinking

Old 07-09-2017, 07:04 PM
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So happy for you! This is very encouraging. Thank you for posting!
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Old 07-09-2017, 10:40 PM
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Tealily, I noticed that on my trip as well. Also I noticed that no one cared one bit if I wasn't drinking. There was no pressure what so ever. And my friends that do drink will have a few a stop. No one getting out of control or embarrassing themselves. Life is so much nicer sober 🎉
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Old 07-10-2017, 03:26 AM
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Great post tealily!

I love this

For me the trick has finally been to realize that Not Drinking is not "being deprived", it's a gift.
Indeed, it takes a little work to get there but when you do it's the most intense feeling of freedom. So glad you were able to truly enjoy your vacation!
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Old 07-10-2017, 05:41 AM
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That's so great! I have a vacation coming up next month at my dad's house. I have always had whiskey on the porch with my dad with loads of wine too. Cocktail hour starts at 3pm there and I would always come home from that vacation feeling the need to dry out. This year will be so different. At first I was worried, but I am now seeing so many benefits of being sober that I am excited to go for adventures and actually enjoy my vacation!!!
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Old 07-10-2017, 06:02 AM
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Thanks for sharing Tealily! I am going on holiday in 2 weeks and I must admit I've been fretting a bit over how I will manage my sobriety, with some concerns that it will diminish the enjoyment of the trip.

Your post just reminded me how sobriety is an enhancement, not a diminishment of life experiences!

I am now looking forward to waking up fresh and energised each day to take in all I can, rather than sleeping in and trying to shake a hangover and seeing little more than the inside of the local bars and clubs.

I hope you had a wonderful time - it sounds like you did :-)
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Old 07-10-2017, 06:13 AM
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Originally Posted by tealily View Post
It was a revelation. It wasn't a deprivation, it was a blessing.

For years I've drank a bottle of wine a night on this trip. At first openly but in the last few years (when I was supposedly cutting back), making excuses to go to the store to buy wine, hiding the empties, missing breakfasts out having to sleep in while everyone else was enjoying time together.

It was a joy to wake up feeling refreshed, healthy and guilt-free, instead of hungover and sick of myself. Everyone was so surprised: Hey! Mom is coming with us! It was such a relief and simple pleasure.

My bathing suit looked better on me, my stomach flatter, my skin, eyes and hair healthier-looking by the week. I feel such a burden lifted.

Every now and then the old associations would pop in.. romanticizing having a sparkling glass of wine overlooking the beach. Then I reminded myself what it would devolve to and actually be .. me hiding a bottle in a closet or behind groceries, surreptitiously drinking out of a plastic cup, collapsing into bed, waking up a few hours later feeling sick and miserable.

For me the trick has finally been to realize that Not Drinking is not "being deprived", it's a gift. Making that mental switch has been everything.

My counter on my phone says 47 days of freedom and $470 saved!

This post is SOO inspiring to me. Your description of past vacations sounds exactly like mine were and how your vacation this year sounds exactly how I would like my vacation this year to go!

I am back on day one, I had almost 3 weeks but blew it this weekend. This post was exactly what I needed to read for motivation.

Thank you, thank you, thank you! :-)
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Old 07-10-2017, 06:18 AM
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What a great post!
Congrats!!
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Old 07-10-2017, 06:22 AM
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Brilliant thread tealily! It's so inspiring for us all to read posts like yours full of joy and accomplishment! You're right you've missed out on absolutely nothing and gained a wonderful trip full of memories no one can take away.
I went away on an all inclusive holiday last month and it was brilliant too. Hey the soda and coffee were free too so I was quite happy!
I hope your thread inspired others to properly plan and get their head around a sober holiday because it is a true gift! Plus the boost to our pride that we CAN do these things is amazing.
Thanks again xxx
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Old 07-10-2017, 07:14 AM
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That mental shift from "deprivation" to "gift" was one of the best feelings I ever had in my life. Not exaggerating. I'm happy to hear you made it through your trip sober and that it was a positive experience for you! I have had a couple of sober trips now, and I can truly say it is wonderful. So much more energy to enjoy the sights and experiences, and so much less expensive!
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Old 07-10-2017, 07:56 AM
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Originally Posted by MLD51 View Post
That mental shift from "deprivation" to "gift" was one of the best feelings I ever had in my life. Not exaggerating. I'm happy to hear you made it through your trip sober and that it was a positive experience for you! I have had a couple of sober trips now, and I can truly say it is wonderful. So much more energy to enjoy the sights and experiences, and so much less expensive!
May I ask how long it took you to get to that point? I know it will be different for everyone but I've been "mostly" sober for the last three or four months and have not made that switch. I still feel so deprived. I have never experienced physical withdrawals and mostly drink to celebrate or because of happy things rather then depression or anxiety and I hope for the day that I will think of it as a "gift" rather then a negative thing.. :-)
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Old 07-10-2017, 08:35 AM
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Mandosca,

I hope MLD will reply too, but speaking for myself, that "switch" has made all the difference. I tried to quit or moderate countless times over the last 5 or 6 years. I've even made it longer not drinking than I have now, but this time feels different, because of that mental switch.

I was always fighting it before, "wishing" I could drink, telling myself I "shouldn't". So I felt deprived. Oh, poor me, not able to drink like "everyone" else.

This time, the balance finally tipped, of misery outweighing any false perceived benefits of drinking. My kids called me out on my drinking. My health and looks were on a downhill spiral. My eyes opened to how small my life had become, an endless round of planning for drinking, recovering from drinking, regretting drinking. My interests, talents and wonder in life had been replaced by the all-consuming Hobby of Wine. I had had enough.

I realized there was no magic pill, no lightning bolt, no outside influence, no "sober fairy" as someone here so perceptively recently called it. It was on me. I could choose to stop. I took drinking off as an option. I saw it for what it is: a poison I was willingly pouring through my system, dulling all that was good, beautiful and real in my life. It was changing me. In no way was it worth what I was losing.

I don't know the steps to tell you to get to that point, just that it is absolutely possible. Just like in the Wizard of Oz, when Dorothy realizes that she has had the power within herself to go home, all along. It doesn't take a superpower or even will power. Just choosing the life you want to live.
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Old 07-10-2017, 09:49 AM
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Originally Posted by tealily View Post
Mandosca,

I hope MLD will reply too, but speaking for myself, that "switch" has made all the difference. I tried to quit or moderate countless times over the last 5 or 6 years. I've even made it longer not drinking than I have now, but this time feels different, because of that mental switch.

I was always fighting it before, "wishing" I could drink, telling myself I "shouldn't". So I felt deprived. Oh, poor me, not able to drink like "everyone" else.

This time, the balance finally tipped, of misery outweighing any false perceived benefits of drinking. My kids called me out on my drinking. My health and looks were on a downhill spiral. My eyes opened to how small my life had become, an endless round of planning for drinking, recovering from drinking, regretting drinking. My interests, talents and wonder in life had been replaced by the all-consuming Hobby of Wine. I had had enough.

I realized there was no magic pill, no lightning bolt, no outside influence, no "sober fairy" as someone here so perceptively recently called it. It was on me. I could choose to stop. I took drinking off as an option. I saw it for what it is: a poison I was willingly pouring through my system, dulling all that was good, beautiful and real in my life. It was changing me. In no way was it worth what I was losing.

I don't know the steps to tell you to get to that point, just that it is absolutely possible. Just like in the Wizard of Oz, when Dorothy realizes that she has had the power within herself to go home, all along. It doesn't take a superpower or even will power. Just choosing the life you want to live.
Thank you so much for your response. You could have been describing my life to a T. I am so happy for you that you finally got to have that "switch" and I really hope that mine will come soon. I think I'm getting there, slowly.

Your posts are so encouraging and heartfelt! Part of my "plan" is to have things that I can read quickly if a craving comes. Things that will remind me to stay on track and why I fight as hard as I do. I recently typed out a list of the reasons I wanted to quit and how alcohol has affected my life and keep it on my purse in case I need it. I hope it's not weird (lol) but I just copied and pasted both of your posts into my "Keep" app on my phone so that I can reread them whenever I need a little boost in staying sober. So thank you very much for that!
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Old 07-10-2017, 10:51 AM
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I'm so glad it helped, M! I did much the same thing.. saving things to read when I need it.

We are all in this together!

Keep up the momentum.. it sounds like you are ready. You can do it!

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Old 07-10-2017, 11:36 AM
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Very inspirational post, Tealily! Getting past "why does everyone else get to drink as much as they want" made all the difference to me as well. I could never hope to remain sober if I was always thinking about what I was missing.
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Old 07-10-2017, 11:41 AM
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Originally Posted by myluckyday View Post
I would love to get a counter on my phone. Is that an app?
Not sure if OP is using the same app but I use Sober Time and it gives me a running tally of days sober and money saved!
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Old 07-10-2017, 12:12 PM
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Originally Posted by mandosca View Post
May I ask how long it took you to get to that point? I know it will be different for everyone but I've been "mostly" sober for the last three or four months and have not made that switch. I still feel so deprived. I have never experienced physical withdrawals and mostly drink to celebrate or because of happy things rather then depression or anxiety and I hope for the day that I will think of it as a "gift" rather then a negative thing.. :-)
I can't remember for sure, but somewhere in the 6-7 month timeframe. I had a lot of legal crap to deal with, and once a lot of that was over, the cloud sort of lifted for me. Plus I was done with outpatient treatment then, and working the steps in AA pretty hard at that point. I just remember sitting on my deck, and thinking that in the past I would have had a glass of wine or a beer with me, and instead of missing that, a feeling of such peace washed over me, because I realized that not only had I not thought about missing the wine, I was really HAPPY to not be drinking. I knew that I had turned a corner of some sort. Of course, your mileage may vary. But I do hope you get to that point - it's a good place to be.
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Old 07-10-2017, 05:09 PM
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Originally Posted by MLD51 View Post
I can't remember for sure, but somewhere in the 6-7 month timeframe. I had a lot of legal crap to deal with, and once a lot of that was over, the cloud sort of lifted for me. Plus I was done with outpatient treatment then, and working the steps in AA pretty hard at that point. I just remember sitting on my deck, and thinking that in the past I would have had a glass of wine or a beer with me, and instead of missing that, a feeling of such peace washed over me, because I realized that not only had I not thought about missing the wine, I was really HAPPY to not be drinking. I knew that I had turned a corner of some sort. Of course, your mileage may vary. But I do hope you get to that point - it's a good place to be.
It sounds like a wonderful place to be. I hope I'm getting there soon!
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Old 07-10-2017, 08:03 PM
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Thanks so much Tealilly and MLD. I think that all of us want to know exactly what everyone who has successfully found recovery feels like. We're not sure what we're reaching for, but everyone keeps telling us it's well worth the effort. Your posts are SO inspirational and describe the magic of sobriety brilliantly.

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Old 07-10-2017, 08:38 PM
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Originally Posted by MLD51 View Post
I can't remember for sure, but somewhere in the 6-7 month timeframe. I had a lot of legal crap to deal with, and once a lot of that was over, the cloud sort of lifted for me. Plus I was done with outpatient treatment then, and working the steps in AA pretty hard at that point. I just remember sitting on my deck, and thinking that in the past I would have had a glass of wine or a beer with me, and instead of missing that, a feeling of such peace washed over me, because I realized that not only had I not thought about missing the wine, I was really HAPPY to not be drinking. I knew that I had turned a corner of some sort. Of course, your mileage may vary. But I do hope you get to that point - it's a good place to be.
M, this is pretty much exactly where I am at. Over 6 months, with about 3.5 combined months of in/outpatient treatment, sponsors, doing the steps, dealing with the legal.
I honestly think the difference or the shift for me was realizing that I really could stay sober NO MATTER WHAT. There was no pull of relief or enjoyment offered by the temptation of drink anymore because I have walked through a lot of hard stuff in the past year and I have spent the first half of this year sober.

I remember going to the water park with my little girl. The big pool was closed, but the slides, kiddie pool and hot tub were open. It was a sunny hot day. I remember looking up at the sun sitting just barely in the water of the kiddie pool and thinking, this is just bliss.
No annoyance at the renos, all the people there, the annoyed lifeguards having to babysit other people's kids, not being able to go down the slides cuz my lil one was too scared, lol.
Not watching the clock, jonesing for my next drink and watching the 5 minutes increments drag by like hours.

For me it was truly committing to sobriety- not just quitting drinking, but living a healthy life in recovery, that I realized I was giving myself freedom, opportunity to experience life for real again.


That's so awesome tealily and I am really glad you enjoyed a wonderful sober vacation.
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