Thursday, 31 July 2014

OPERATON SUCCESSFUL

Thank you for all the kind thoughts for my brother today.  I've just heard that the operation was successful and he is now in recovery for the next few hours. I am elated. He has a bit of a rough road ahead for sure but  I am going to celebrate now with a bundaberg guava drink with heaps of  ice in a nice crystal glass. YES!! I just love the sound of the ice clinking!!  Memories..........but part of my re-training.  Cheers.

Wednesday, 30 July 2014

10 DAYS

Today has been real  busy, so busy in fact that I forgot to think about alcohol for nearly the whole day!
I'm thinking about it now though because I've just read Mrs D's lovely post and all the comments, and I've read the first couple of chapters of Jason Vale's book.  So far so good.  I'm home alone, and feeling a bit flat but that's okay.  I am not sleeping very well.  Last night I nodded off in bed for about half and hour while watching tele, missed my program then didn't get back to sleep until about 3.45am and up again at 7.30am.
I will be glad when my sleep improves.
Over all I guess I'm not doing it too hard.  I miss it for sure. It still feels kind of unbelievable that I am attempting to give it up for good. That's the hardest bit to get my head around.  A good friend just rang and said she was in the area and should she call in?  I said yes at first, sure if you feel like it. Then I felt it necessary to say that I am feeling a bit flat and I am not drinking and still had some stuff to do and I'm watching the news on 1+1 coz I missed it.  You see normally every time she visits I open a bottle of wine for her and get out some olives and cheese and crackers etc, and she drinks wine and I drink southern comfort and diet coke and we have a great old catch up and a laugh.  I love her visits.  I love her. She is pretty sensible and only has two or three small glasses as she has to drive home, and she doesn't stay late......(well unless we really get on it and she stays the night).  I always drink more than her and I continue to drink after she has gone. Anyway she was cool about it and said she'll just go home and watch the news too, and it's good that I wasn't drinking.  The truth is I am really tired, and worried about a whole lot of stuff and I just want to get into my toasty warm bed and read my book.  And on Friday my very long time friend is coming up from down South to stay the weekend.  Hopefully I've snapped out of this flat stage by then.  I've already told her what I'm up to, and I'm looking forward to seeing her, at the same time as being a little apprehensive.  I will cook on Friday night and she and my partner will probably have a few beers and wines, and there's this great Burmese restaurant The Bodhi Tree so I think I'll talk them into going there on Sat night and maybe a movie. God I sound like a real boring misery guts don't I?  I'm glad it's winter, hopefully by summer I'll be a dab wee hand at this sober stuff and won't even miss it in the slightest, and I will be laughing and happy and funny and really together, and painlessly generous in allowing others around me to do whatever they wish, without it affecting me. (I'll probably be hiding in a corner somewhere on the new laptop I'm going to get, writing stuff on Lotta's new website).  Cool, I'll hold that thought, and go read some more Jason!!

Tuesday, 29 July 2014

DAY 9...... AND I'D SACK MYSELF IF I WORKED FOR ME!!

Well I actually do work for me, and that's the only reason I am not sacked!.
I got up quite early, bath, hair wash etc, and sat at my desk, looked in my diary at the big list of things I planned to accomplish today, book keeping, dealing with insurance stuff,  taking new photo's to update my website, basically a whole lot of every day work stuff.  But Aha....I have done nothing all morning except read wonderful stories from wonderful people here in NZ and all over the world who are trying to get sober, and Getting sober.  Hahahaha.........  I love it! When I do go out a bit later it will be to pick up the Jason Vale book I've ordered from the library, so I guess that will keep me pretty busy too!  I am glad it is the middle of winter, and not so crazy as usual, so I'm figuring just one day to completely indulge myself isn't going to break the bank, and it's a good day because I'm here on my own with no one working for me today and it looks pretty cold outside.  It's hilarious to me that I am now making wee excuses to myself to Blog and read Blogs instead of working, like I used to make excuses to myself to drink shitloads of southern comfort instead of having a nice dignified wee sober night off!  The operative word here is actually Night.  I drank at night, after a hard day's work. I have never liked to work at night, although I do love to work and I find a lot of satisfaction in what I'm doing.  So I'd better get serious about figuring out how and when to fit this cool online stuff in.  I spend most of my day sitting here at my desk, so I don't feel like doing that any more after about 5pm.  Hmmmm....time management might be the key.  Do some work all morning when my brain is fresh, and be very efficient and productive, and allow myself to knock off at 3pm each day. That could work for now, but never in summer.   New idea....get a laptop.  Then keep all my serious business stuff here on the PC, and walk away when I am ready to knock off, pour a little apricot nectar with ice, and check out whats going on with all you lovely people, from my couch, guilt free. Like I make it a chosen leisure activity.  Work has nothing to do with this, and this has nothing to do with work. Well!  I'm glad I've got that figured out.

I've been thinking about addiction.  About replacing one addiction with another.  I was very much in love some time back with a wonderful man, for 8 years, and he was in AA. Obviously we had a lot of tolerance for each other for it to last so long, the love answers that. He was obsessed with AA and went to meetings at least 4 times a week, sponsored several people at once, prayed, meditated, did readings every morning from several different books, and drank coffees all day with about a tablespoon of coffee in each one.  He took his thermos coffee cup everywhere. I knew I had a drinking problem well before our relationship began, but to be quite honest his "addiction" to AA really frightened me. It was not that he was fragile around the booze, he was fabulous.  He would drop me off at the Irish Bar in Lyttelton sometimes to meet some girlfriends for a drink while he went to his AA meeting, and pick me up after, and often stay and have a coffee while I had one more! (brat!)  I could write volumes on this so I will cut to the chase. I ended the relationship, not because it was interfering with my drinking, not because I had stopped loving him, but because he was on such a spiritual realm, and so deep and so intense about his beliefs etc, that I selfishly wanted.....what?  Feet planted firmly on the ground, reality.  His reality was not my reality. Last time we spoke about 4 months ago he was off to Burma where he was invited into the monastery to be an honorary Monk for 6 weeks, and he has done this in Thailand and Cambodia several times too.  So he is living his true vocation, and I was right set him free.
I now understand his obsession with AA, and how important it is to have support and to be able to express yourself.  I think this reading and writing and sharing online is a much more soothing and healthy way to do it, well for me anyway.  I do have the utmost respect for AA. I am just not comfortable with it, personally.
It's great that when I start writing on here I have no idea what I am going to say after maybe my first sentence!  I excuse myself if I ramble.
I am living inside my head a lot in these early days, and inside a lot of yours as well!
I have a very long way to go and a great deal to learn, so I will head off to the library now.....and hopefully Mr Vale will have some good teachings for me.

I hope everyone is having a good day today xo











Monday, 28 July 2014

PHEW!! THE FIRST WEEK IS BEHIND ME

Well I've got through the first week and I'm feeling quite pleased with myself about that.  On the way home yesterday we went via Sumner and went to the movie Calvary.  It was excellent, very well acted and a powerful movie.  Then when we got home at about 6.30 there was a nice fire going and my sweet daughter was making green Thai chicken curry for us for dinner, and my son was here too with his girlfriend, so that was a very happy way to end the week.  I even got congratulated!
Today has been hideously busy, and I've been dying to get on here all day!  Actually I think this blogging thing is going to be great because it not only reinforces our commitment  to ourselves, but if ever at a loss for something to do.....then how enjoyable it is to spend an hour or two on here reading other people's stories and gaining knowledge and confidence, and having a very safe sort of feeling of companionship with like minded people. I feel very grateful for this.
I still feel quite weird but that's okay.  I told a friend today who dropped in unexpectedly. She's someone I used to drink with quite a bit a long time back. It wasn't so bad, talking about it a wee bit.  She was kind of surprised that I would even attempt it, but I could tell it was making her think about her own drinking habits too, which are a bit excessive. She was supportive and told me how strong I am, and if that's what I want then she thinks I can do it. So I shall certainly head into week two with that in mind.  I just can't wait till I get to the point where I really Love being Sober.  And feel whole and normal and confident and proud.
Bring it on !  (I know there's some hard yards before that though).
I hope you have all had a happy weekend and a productive Monday.

Friday, 25 July 2014

FIRST WEEKEND WITHOUT

Well...I guess yesterdays post was a bit intense, and I was glad to be put back on track a wee bit by the kind comments from Colouful1 and Mrs D. We are all capable of great empathy for all the suffering in the world, it is extremely sad, and I felt very sad about it and still do. But I guess it is wrong for me to feel that I can compare the hideously cruel suffering of others, with my own personal life and my drinking problem. I was actually despising myself for what I have created in my life, for myself and my children.  Feeling guilty to have a home and comfort.
Anyway the day went downhill quite fast after writing that post anyway.  I felt all empowered when I wrote it and I meant every word. But all the time I was worried about the weekend and how to get through it. I had a busy day with my work, then went to see my younger brother who has cancer, recently diagnosed, already had a colon operation and in 10 days has two thirds of his liver cut out. I am extremely worried obviously, but we are all very positive too and it was a nice visit. I didn't tell him of my big mission as I wanted the visit to be about him.  Then I had to pick up a TV for my severely Bi Polar sister, and she'd given me the wrong shop, and when I got to the right shop it was closed. When I got home my older brother rang up (I think he was pissed) and he really annoyed me, we argued, and I told him to F... off!  By this time I was a strung out wreck, desperate for a drink, but determined not to, and was soon having a wee sob to my daughter in her room about my fears for my young brother, and my fears for myself.  My partner had arrived for the evening before me and had lit the fire.  I cooked us all dinner and sat down 'a little bit bleary and worse for wear and tear', and we went to bed early and watched Seven Days and Johnno and Ben.  So that was day 5 and today is day 6.  I'm going to get fat at this rate, I cooked bacon eggs and chips for us for breakfast, then we did a bit of running around, then needed to check on something in Diamond Harbour, so we had leek and potato soup and garlic bread for lunch at a nice cafe over there, and now I am up at his place high in the hills, using his computer to sneak a wee blog out, while he is dragging firewood around with a tractor and chainsawing it up to keep me warm with his big stone open fireplace.  And then he will cook me a roast lamb dinner.  I have felt really raw about talking to him about stopping.  We don't see each other during the week until Thursday, and it is not unheard of for me not to have a drink on a Thursday when he comes over, coz sometimes I used to decide to give it a real good nudge on the Wednesday, so I could give it a miss on the Thursday so he would get one day out of four where I was my nice normal self.  When I drink I am not a complete maniac or anything......I just find it very difficult to stop, which would certainly make me more of a maniac than him!  Often with the result of me staying up later listening to more music and having a couple more.  He is a very sensible man. Anyway, he certainly noticed it last night, and could see and feel my distress, and he asked me and I told him.  We talked a little more about it today on the drive to Diamond Harbour.  I feel very exposed and fragile today.  I've got some wee peachee bundabergs and when he has a beer or wine I will have one of those with ice in a nice glass.  (I just love the sound of the ice clinking in the glass).  Just a wee left over nostalgia after being a top shelf spirits drinker for nearly 2/3s of my life!!!  Day 7 tomorrow....bring it on!

Thursday, 24 July 2014

WITH REVOLUTION IS REVELATION!!

Very busy day yesterday on day four but I got through it pretty well all things considered.
So today is day 5 and I'm still hanging in here. I've been doing a bit of thinking, as you do when wide awake at 5.00am.  I am thinking, and feeling very deeply about all the tragedy going on with the plane shot down in the Ukraine, the other Algerian one missing, and the hideous suffering of the people in Gaza. When I turned the news on at 6am I then see that a UN school where 1000 people who've lost their homes were sheltering, has been seriously attacked by bombs, and the visuals of the carnage there are so excruciatingly painful to see.  One man running carrying two babies with blood on them, and so many bewildered, frightened and crying children, Mothers with faces expressing such mournful anguish and grief, crying and wailing. Brave strong men who must feel a terrible sadness, anger, and perhaps too, a sense of inadequacy at their hopeless inability to protect their families and their homes from this terrible onslaught. My heart goes out to every one of these people, including the families of the missing schoolgirls in Africa, and all people everywhere who are suffering and starving and homeless, and in war zones trying to protect those they love.  There are horrific things happening in our world.
The Revelation this has given me today is one of Perspective.
I think I am suffering somewhat this week because I am trying to give up a selfish ugly and greedy habit. Trying to change my thinking to cope with that fact.  I will keep trying and I am aware how new this is and how vulnerable I am.  But in actual fact, I have no idea what Real suffering is. I sit here at my nice oak desk in my lovely warm and comfortable 114 year old villa, plenty of food in my fridge, tons of firewood, my children are safe, no particular money problems, pretty lucky all round I'd say.  What do I feel?  I feel ashamed and pathetic. I want to kick myself in the butt and tell myself to go get a real problem!  Whinge whinge oh poor me I am a compulsive drinker who can't control my alcohol intake and so "OUCH' I've decided I'd better give it up....and that is going to be real hardship on poor wee me, coz I might not have so much fun any more and it might be prickly and awkward and real hard while I get used to it.  Well get over yourself Prudence and try to start, to commence, to begin to imagine the pain and the grief, the eternal anguish you would feel if you lost one of Your beautiful children.
I feel such enormous compassion for the suffering of others right now that I am finding it difficult to take my alcohol addiction seriously.
I think this actually can help us all.  Every time it gets really difficult, I am going to try to  imagine being one of those Mothers of those little bleeding innocent babies in Gaza, who has perhaps already lost a son or a daughter or her husband in previous conflicts. I think that will help me to tolerate cravings without caving in.  My problems are small. I will head into my first weekend sober in many years with these thoughts in my mind and my heart.
If anyone sees this I hope you have a fun happy positive gorgeous weekend with no naughty drinkies x


Wednesday, 23 July 2014

WONKY WEDNESDAY

Day 3 started well with a nice drive over to my house at Diamond Harbour to meet the EQC and Fletchers and the builder.  So that was progress, took about 3 hours and I am getting way more than I thought I was getting, including a new deck and all new exterior cladding.  So Yay for that. My newly sober self thinks the extras must be a wee reward coming my way for my positive changes. Ridiculous of course, but it is good that I can at least think what I want, even if I can't do what I would normally want to do right now.  I have just driven home from Riccarton, shaking, with very swollen and numb mouth, which is also full of gauze.  I went to an appointment  for a filling and she mentioned my top wisdom teeth have to come out. I opted to do it then and there so I wouldn't have to think about it, and then to do the fillings in a few weeks. I think I'm still in shock. I can't believe I just did that.  I look hillarious with my cheeks about twice the usual size. Ah well, I was told to rest up so I think I will stop answering the phone seeing as I can't talk properly anyway. If ever there was a real good excuse to knock a few back I reckon it would be right about now.  I am so glad that I don't want to, and I know how disappointed in my self I would feel if I just caved in on day 3.  So that's good because I wont. White knuckling? Gritting Teeth?  Hahahaa, at least I've got two less to grit!

Tuesday, 22 July 2014

SECOND DAY SOBER

Feeling a bit weird this morning.  Not because I haven't had a drink, I don't drink till about 5 anyway and I've only had one day off so far.  Today will be a bit harder as I have only had 2 days off in a row about twice in the last year. I try to have 2 days off a week but very seldom 2 in a row, and half the time that whole idea goes out the window anyway.  The old "fuck it" being the main excuse, but I use all the others too. I run my own company from home and I have a very busy life, so I "earn it", "deserve it", "feel like it", "why the heck not?", life is short", "life's for living, enjoy it".  They all sound quite reasonable actually, don't they?
I spend a lot of time on my own, at home working during the day, and often at home on my own in the evenings. Although my 23 year old daughter lives with me - she has a boyfriend and often stays there, or he stays here and they do their own thing.  The Southern Comfort is like my wee companion. I absolutely love it.  It's like liquid honey going down my throat and I can't get enough of it. It gets so sick sometimes with about the second drink that I practically skull the last half of the glass because I can't wait to pour the next one. Compulsion.  Yes, that's a good word. So why do I feel weird today?  Because I am doing all the usual things, up, bath, hair wash, makeup, make bed, all the while fielding phone calls, and sorting out problems with electricians and maintenance people, taking bookings, answering emails..........but all the time feeling obsessed with this HUGE decision I have made. I told my children last night.  Just to make it real.  I also told them not to be too disappointed in me if I fail. I don't want to fail.  But it feels so ENORMOUS that I feel like I might be kidding myself.  Who do I think I am that I could just give it up just like that because I want to?

Monday, 21 July 2014

BABY STEPS

I've never written a blog before, but taking a leaf from the lovely Mrs D's book, I thought Day One might be a good place to start. I have no idea if I can do this, but I am much inspired by all of you online people out there helping yourselves and helping others.  I hope to change my life today.  I have a vision of a happy fun and love filled future with me being sober, and being the best I can be, for myself first, and for my children, my man, and my friends and my family. I read the first half of Mrs D's book yesterday, having ordered it when I saw her amazing TV interview. I'd been putting off reading it because I was scared of the naked truth it would reveal to me, and I felt I had a wee bit more drinking to do first. Well that ended yesterday.  No big fanfare, I didn't tell anyone, just had a few southern comforts as usual whilst making a beef stroganoff dinner for my grown up kids and their partners, then a few more, nice fire, a bit of Nick Cave, Leonard Cohen and Johnnie Cash after they'd all gone.  Drank the pretty standard amount of the wee 300 ml bottle (which I pour into from a 40 oz one to try to monitor what I drink). Then I thought I'd better get rid of a few nips of whisky that a friend had left in the pantry, only had 2 of those and just to show myself a small bit of restraint I threw the last bit down the sink.  At the moment I am scared to finish Mrs D's book coz its her book that has given me the courage and determination to even attempt this, and what will I do when I've finished it?  I have been doing this for a very very long time for five, six or seven days a week.
So here I am, nervous and frankly quite terrified.  I really want to do this.
I think I'll go and read another chapter.