Monday, March 4, 2013

Is it really any fun to be sober?

Believe it or not, it is.

Many of us, when we first get sober, wonder how sobriety will fit into our social life.

Lucky for me, I had completely alienated myself from most of my friends at the end of my use. So I didn't have to change who I was hanging out with.  I just had to find SOME people to hang out with. My only friends were meth and my husband.   Both things were sick, and not really giving me anything that was good for me.

Side note... Throughout my using history, I quit many times.  Sometimes stringing along one, two and even three months of sobriety.  I HAD a small collection of 1, 2, and 3 month medallions from all of those tries, until I gave them back to a meeting,  to be reused.  I really think about my history as two major tries/lengths of sobriety.  The year or so I had after I went to Hazelden (1), and the last time I quit, in August 2010 (2).

When I got out of treatment for sobriety run number-one, I wasn't sure what I was going to do for fun.  I resolved that I wasn't going to have fun any more.  Those rock and roll times with my long time friends were going to be a thing of the past.  Not that they were out drinking in the bars THAT much anymore, but even if they were, I was no longer going to be able to go with.

In my case, at that point, people were surprised that I had a drug problem.  And when I said I was an alcoholic, they were like, "what?"  Some said, "Well you don't have a drinking problem, I drink more than you do."  Or , "I didn't know you were using that much" was a common response.

After I got out of treatment, and would go to social settings where alcohol would be served, I felt like (not always the reality) people treated me like I was an alien.  There was a lot of, "are you okay?" or "is this (holding a beer in my face) bothering you?"  During family functions, my loving people would say to me, "you can't have any of THIS!"  Trying to be smart-asses, and doing a good job.

None of that bothered me.  What bothered me was that I was making THEM uncomfortable with my sobriety.  It didn't make me want to use, but I wanted them to just not feel bad about me being sober. I didn't want their sympathy about being sober.   Because it isn't a death sentence.  I got the feeling that some people feel bad for those of us who decide to LIVE sober.  Like, "that poor woman."

One weekend at a cabin with my girlfriends, they went to the bar, and I stayed back at the cabin, reading.  I was the designated sober cab, which was totally fine by me (but looking back, not a wise choice.)   I did leave my Alcoholics Anonymous book out on the kitchen table, for when they woke up the next morning.  I thought I was so funny and clever.  They thought so too.  (Girls, you know that was funny.)

I did leave that weekend feeling a bit sorry for myself.  I didn't believe I could have fun yet.  I was conditioned to think that drinking was the ONLY way to have fun.

The truth is this.  From the beginning of my sobriety, I felt like there was no way I was going to have fun again.  And if I am going to compare it to those rare nights, let's say at a local bar, listening to a fucking great band, or maybe at a friend's house playing cards, having a lot of laughs and the perfect buzz, I will honestly say that I haven't totally found that here.

But when I drink or use drugs, I never have nights like that anyhow.  I end up too high, and too scared to leave the house.  I am locked in my bedroom, picking my skin. I will never have those perfect buzz nights again, because I can't stop using to stay in that "zone", anyhow.  I go too far, every time.  Trust me, I've tried.

And now, I don't need it.

So my fun now is more whole.  I went to a birthday party yesterday where there was a large group of friends from the program.  There were some normies too.  We friends from the program sat in this person's living room and laughed until our stomach hurt.  We had a very good time.  These are some dirty minded, super funny, good people in sobriety.  And I didn't make a fool of myself.  Today, I'm not looking for more drugs because I did them all yesterday.  I remember what I did and said.  I didn't have fun yesterday because of the buzz I had, or the amount of drugs I did.  I had fun because I was with some super women, with good sense of humors, clear heads, and wise minds.  I had real fun.

14 comments:

  1. YAY!!! I'm so glad you had a great time and had fun. Laughing until your stomach hurts is priceless. Hangovers suck anyway and not worth it. I dont miss getting drunk one bit.

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    1. I do not miss that part at ALL! It feels good to always wake up NOT hungover.

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  2. After reading this, I am wondering if it is these very feelings that keep people from getting sober. Are they afraid of not ever being able to have fun again! I have a grown son who has been in recovery from meth SO MANY TIMES and he just can't give up the friends....so therefore he doesn't give up the drugs! Good luck to you. I enjoy your blog

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    1. Thank you Paula. It is so hard to get this part. I agree, this scares people quite a bit. It is possible though! Good luck to you and your son. I know it is hard.

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  3. I keep thinking I'm going to miss out on something like the kids who refuse to nap. Even though I know -- I KNOW -- I can't stop at just one, I can't usually stop drinking until it's all gone because DUH THERE'S SOME LEFT, I still sometimes do it. Oh, the excuses. I've got plenty of those too. I may not be quite there to try full-on sobriety but I'm glad to say that my Drink It All days are gone. I'm proud of you for figuring out why you're sober and how to stay there.

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  4. I was so glad to read the first line, after the title of your post. I've never been in your shoes, but I have been around several people who have been there. I am so happy for you that you had some real fun!

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  5. I stumbled upon your blog and first wanted to say a huge congratulations on your sobriety!

    I couldn't begin to imagine what journey you have taken, but I do know from wrestling with my own struggles that being vocal about it is extremely liberating. Thank you for writing such an honest blog, and I think it's fantastic that you have found people you can truly laugh with. That can be a rare but priceless find =)

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  6. Betsey! SO glad I stumbled on your site! I'm a former drinker of freakish amounts of alcohol. I quit (for the millionth and last time) when I had my son. I can't BELIEVE how awesome it feels to not feel sick and guilty all the time. I'm content for the first time in my life. I told my son, even though he's too young to understand, that he saved my life. And he did. And I did. I'll be dropping in a lot. Thanks for being here.

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  7. I am also an addict and as I read this, I was like woah. I am of the rare breed, that I don't have any friends who do drugs. I am still able to have a lot of fun, like going out, socialisng etc. For me, its always the day after. When things get mundane again, that I turn to drugs (I have never been a big drinker). Sundays are always a bad day for me. I am sorry I have not been reading much of your blog. I will make the effort to do so more. Just reading this, there is a lot I can relate too.

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  8. So glad I stumbled upon your blog. The paragraph about people treating you like an alien really hit home with me. I am so much happier now that I am no longer drunk/hungover all of the time.

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    1. I am glad you stumbled here too!! It is great to wake up and not feel bad physically, emotionally or spiritually for me!

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