Wednesday, November 4, 2015

No alcohol beyond this point

Welp, I did it. 30 days of no drinking, thanks to my own self-inflicted rules of Sobetober. And while this certainly wasn't the hardest thing I've ever done, it did provide some surprising insights. First of all, was actually quite easy to substitute my one-finger of bourbon nightcap for a cup of equally aromatic tea. I even found a few new flavors, using this month as an opportunity to branch out from my familiar chamomile. My wallet also took notice of my teetotaling ways, and I admit that it was nice to spend that $30 or so bucks I normally would have spent on alcohol on a cute new sweater. And I do feel pretty great, but that might be due in part to an unusually light work schedule that allowed me to get to the gym many more times than I normally do - but it's also entirely possible that my drive to go to said gym was increased because I didn't have pints of beer sloshing around in my stomach, preventing me from even thinking about getting off the couch.

BUT - there were four specific instances in which I sorely regretted my personal ban - and not surprisingly, they were all social situations.  A double date in which the other couple inquired about the wine and beer list, a girl's night with someone I hadn't seen in two months, a quick get-together with friends at a bar for Halloween, and an opening night party at which two different acquaintances blatantly asked if I was pregnant when they heard me ordering a seltzer with lime (there's no shame in theater). It's not as though I had a bad time at any of those occasions - the dinner was lovely, the girl's night was exactly what we both needed, and the conversation at the bar was animated in spite of the lack of alcohol. But while I certainly enjoyed the play and subsequent party, I definitely ducked out a bit earlier than I normally would have - mingling with awkward techies is just not as fun without the assistance of a signature cocktail.

So what does this all mean? Not a heck of a lot. Many people give up much more and for far longer and don't write a pithy blog post about it. But it's good to set and stick to personal challenges, and I think this was a good one for me to attempt. It set me up nicely for the next 11 months of getting "wedding ready," and I may in fact do it again in February and September of next year. I will say though, that as this post goes live, I will be in Day 3 of a Very Large and Very Lengthy Event - and I will enjoy nothing more than sipping a wonderfully cold and salted margarita at the wrap-up dinner.

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