Ok so I had a bad Saturday and Monday so very consciously have had three days without a drink. Blood pressure is down, blah,blah. Of course not drinking everyday results in some health benefits. But I’m not counting days. I never want to count days. I fully intend to have a drink tonight, looking forward to it in fact, I just want to be in control of the drink not the other way round. Redefining ones relationship with a psychoactive drug is never going to be easy or straightforward, but for me, I couldn’t bear counting days and being in fear of a relapse. I’ve done that with dieting and the feeling of guilt and inadequacy when one cracks is awful. That’s the trouble with counting days- it can become all or nothing.
Three days (not counting just observing) without a drink, just to give my body a rest, and this fairly simple strategy will be one of the pillars of my plan to reduce my alcohol consumption. The other is to reduce my average consumption (yes I love data, spreadsheets and have been logging my consumption for about 8 weeks) from an average of 50-60 units a week to around 30 units a week. I know the recommended limit is 14 units per week but for me sticking to 30 units would be a great start to reducing my unhealthily large consumption. Tonight the strategy I have is to not have a drink until 8.30. Two glasses of rose with a meal with my girlfriend, bit of telly then bed. I’m also visualising how good I’ll feel tomorrow at having had a “normal” drinking episode.
I want to separate out my day to day diary of winning back control of my drinking from the examination of where, how and why my drinking habits got to where they have. I hopefully will do a post on the origins of my drinking later on. This is just a record of a week that started badly and has had a quiet, alcohol free few days before hopefully a controlled, balanced alcohol containing weekend.
One thing that was good for me to hear yesterday was that a friend told me that a former work colleague is having a retirement do this weekend. My friend asked if I had been invited. The person having the party said, “no, Jim will only end up drinking all the booze, eating all the food, and getting drunk.” Hurt? A little. Surprised? Not really. My drinking habits have led me to be perceived like that. That has to change. It will take planning and resolve. There will be ups and downs but it is possible and I will do it. Believe it will happen, watch it happen. ( Ha, let’s see!)