The Tipping Point

Since 2015, I have questioned whether or not I needed to slow my roll with drinking. On the one hand, I felt like I drank just as much or as little as everyone around me. On the other hand, we had a family member who was ill from cirrhosis of the liver. Having to deal with a sick family member caused me to pause and begin to really pay attention. (More on this story at a later time.)

Over the last few years, I played around with Sober September or Dry January. Then I played the game with myself where I wouldn’t drink during the week but had fun on the weekends. With all these attempts, I never made it all the way through a month or even the week. But I brushed these failures off. It wasn’t a big deal! Life was meant to be lived and fun was to be had. I wasn’t any different than anyone else.

But there were two specific instances that made me reexamine my drinking. 
1.  This past May, I declared Sober May as a birthday gift to myself. The gift of good health! Nobody was going to mess with me and I was not going to screw this one up! The first few weeks were just fine, I felt strong and in control. I was able to drink non-alcohol beer at a gathering and when I went to my favorite margarita joint, I enjoyed limeade with a salted rim.  Then, there was an evening where I attended a birthday party for a friend and I was with my peeps. I was ready to rock and roll and had a game plan. I was gonna kick some ass at the bowling alley, soda would be my friend and I was going to savor every last damn mozzarella stick. The good news:  I did not have a drink. Win! The bad news:  I had a mild panic attack because, as the night went on, I realized how much I used alcohol to help me feel at ease in social situations. I literally had the realization while at a birthday party that I may have a drinking problem. Then my thoughts spiraled, I could hardly breathe and I was a bit teary. It was all I could do to smile and keep going with the night, but inside, I was like, “Holy smokes! What does all this mean for me?” I mulled this over for a few weeks and really started to pay attention to how I felt and started dealing with the emotions of not drinking.

2.  Fast forward to the end of the month. Full disclosure, I made it Memorial Day and had a beer at a cookout we hosted. Not a full month, but damn near 28 days. (Sigh!) The following Friday, I went out with a friend and enjoyed a few glasses of wine. The evening was going beautifully and then I came home and for some reason that I will never understand, I went a bit nuts. I got angry as hornet and just started carrying on. One of my closest friends received a Marco Polo from me ranting and cussing (I was trying to be funny, but the anger came through). The next morning I woke up, deleted the post to my friend and just felt like a big old ass. I got a text from my friend asking how I felt. My response was “ashamed and embarrassed.” She giggled and wrote back, “I just meant do you need Matt to get you a McDonald’s Coke?” Ha ha!

Needless to say, the month of May allowed for some insight and as days passed, I got more and more serious about cleaning up my act and perhaps making some big changes. These two episodes served as my tipping points. It was time and I was ready to take action.

Published by Stephanie

What a privilege to get to connect with you, the reader. Thank you for taking time to read this blog. My family is my world. I am a wife, mom, daughter, sister, coach and friend to some wonderful humans. I have a passion for helping people feel good from the inside out. My background is in health and wellness and presently, I own manage a small personal training business. I love to swim/bike/run, teach fitness classes, read, cook and talk all things self care. In recent months, I have decided to improve my relationship with alcohol which may mean ultimately going sober. This blog is about how I came to this decision and the journey ahead. My hope is to connect with others in the same place and share things that may help. May we openly talk about the hard things like our emotions and feelings and lift one another up by sharing our love and strength.

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