This time of year is bittersweet for me. On the one hand, having four Christmas parties in a week is a great opportunity to catch up with mates I don’t get to see as much as I’d like. But on the other hand,
it’s also four potential scenarios where I could be the only one without a drink in hand. Without alcohol. And that means four different scenarios where I could be answering questions about my
choices, or even being challenged over them 😏
For my 21st birthday, I drank 21 tequila shots. IN. A. ROW. I sat under the bar for a good 30 mins before throwing up and then returning to drink some more. I then left my own birthday party to sneak upstairs to a rugby function where I told them I was a cheerleader so I could get in, before an actual cheerleader took me home because I was too drunk. What a boss! 🙈
By the time I was 23, I used alcohol as a crutch. I never enjoyed a glass of wine with dinner. I didn’t even enjoy the taste of alcohol. I enjoyed the feeling of being drunk. I used alcohol to mask insecurity.
I used it to bury emotion. I used it to bolster self confidence. And I used it until I fell over, threw up or blacked out –sometimes all of the above 🤮
When I was 25, I put myself in hospital. I got so drunk, I forgot where I lived, fell out of a cab and smacked my head on the curb. I have no idea who called the ambulance but I woke up with a black eye
and a drip 🤕
I’m not “proud” of any of this ☠️
But what I am proud of is the fact that this New Years’ will be my 11th year of sobriety. 11 years of finding myself. Of forgiving
myself. Of healing myself. And 11 years of figuring out that I can love myself without having to be drunk to do it ❤️
So this festive season, be the bar tender who gives the non drinkers a free soft drink, be the mate who’s at the bar getting a glass of water before they’ve even been asked, and be the random stranger who doesn’t feel the need to tell someone that “ surely just one drink won’t hurt.” 👌🏻
It’s Christmas and sobriety was the greatest gift I ever gave myself 🎁 .