Day 1

So this is it. I finished my last alcoholic drink at about two minutes to twelve last night. I still feel a bit jittery from yesterday’s excesses (I thought I should go out with a bang) but the persistent, squeezing headache I’ve had all day has almost gone away.

I’ve been planning this day for a while. In exactly six months time I will turn 30. Thirty. It sounds… so much more grown up than I feel. One thing I’m sure of is that I absolutely cannot let my problem drinking creep into my thirties. So I’ve vowed to get a grip on this now. I want to reach my 30th feeling like I’m back in control, living my life and experiencing every second of it, rather than reaching for a drink (or five) everytime things get tough. Or I’m bored. Or there’s something to celebrate. Or I’m lonely. You get the idea.

I’ve never written a blog before, but I was so inspired by some of the other sober blogs around that I thought I’d try and document my journey too. It was reading some of the other blogs that made me realise I really had to stop drinking. 

For ages I’d told myself my drinking wasn’t that much of a problem. I hold down a good job, I don’t drink everyday and I certainly don’t feel the need to pour vodka on my cornflakes. But I binge drink. Sometimes out with friends, at parties. But more often, I drink alone, in my flat. I drink until I pass out and wake up on the sofa in the early hours. For years I was able to confine these binges to two nights a week. But recently two has become more like three or sometimes four. Whereas I used to plan my binges (picking times when I knew it wouldn’t matter if I was hungover the next day) I’ve started to drink whenever the urge takes me, even if that means getting up for work with a stinking hangover. Sometimes I drink heavily for several nights in a row, needing more and more to get that buzz and flick the off switch in my brain.

It’s taken me a very long time to realise I needed to stop completely. I’d always thought you had to hit rock bottom before you gave up the booze for good. I haven’t reached rock bottom – yet. But I know I’m on that road. Rock bottom is looming ahead, like a nasty car crash on a motorway. At the moment, it’s still several miles away and I can avoid it; I have options. I could bury my head in the sand, and ignore the warning signs whizzing by. Or, I could wake up, get my shit together and chose a different route before it’s too late. 

I know what I’m going to do.


16 thoughts on “Day 1

  1. UnPickled April 7, 2013 at 2:44 pm Reply

    Wonderful, Kate. Confetti, streamers, and a big “Bon Voyage” wave as you set sail for Sanetown. Oh wait, that puts me on the wrong side of your journey! Scratch that – I’m in a lighthouse in Sanetown watching for you and calling you forward. That sounds awful lonely – you alone on a boat, me alone in a lighthouse. The truth is, you are not alone on your journey – there are many many others on the road you’ve chosen. We are all cheering for you and happy to have you make your way. It’s good that you are documenting the trip, as there is so much to discover as you go and beautiful destination awaits. xo, UnP

    • soberjournalist April 7, 2013 at 9:19 pm Reply

      Hello – thank you so much for your message, it really made me smile. I cannot wait to get to Sanetown! I only discovered your blog a few weeks ago and have read it from start to finish. It’s led me onto many other people’s blogs too. The sober blogosphere has been a total revelation. I felt a bit out of place at AA and was desperate to find people with experiences more like mine. I’d never realised how much support is online! x

  2. Belle (Tired2012) April 9, 2013 at 3:51 pm Reply

    bravo for seeing the ‘rock bottom’ coming and choosing instead to step aside and avoid it. well well done 🙂 Don’t need to see a train wreck in order to know it’s time to move your car off the train tracks and get it back on the highway instead. (i always seem to make car references when talking about sobriety…). there is lots of love and support for you here in the sobersphere. as much as you want. just reach out 🙂 Hugs, Belle.

  3. christinawoods April 23, 2013 at 3:45 pm Reply

    When I read your lines, I really feel the same. April 6 was also my last binge.! Thanks for sharing.

  4. A runner and a writer May 8, 2014 at 10:23 am Reply

    Hey Sober Journalist,

    Today is my Day One. I found your blog a while back. Honest and refreshing. Thanks for blogging and don’t stop.

    • Doing this May 28, 2014 at 11:28 pm Reply

      Congratulations. How are you doing? I am also a runner and now recovering alcoholic. I hope you are doing well.

  5. Doing this May 28, 2014 at 11:19 pm Reply

    Hi there, today is my day 2. Similar to you, I didn’t drink everyday and I thought it was under control. 2 days ago I hit my rock bottom. I ruined my 4th friends wedding and cheated on my husband at the same time. Not exactly the special moment it should have been. He is giving me a second chance (I dont know why) but I am determined to do this. I am seriously determined. My dad who is a recovering alcoholic is in the hospital yet again and his health is so poor because he spent 50+ years drinking himself to death. I want a family and I do not want to do this to them. I do not know if I can do this, but dammit I am going to try. I can’t believe a DUI 9 years ago was not my rock bottom. I am starting counseling next week and I look forward to recovery. I hope this community stays around because I need to hear about people that weren’t daily drinkers, but us binge drinkers that dont know when to say when.

  6. A guy in Memphis July 15, 2014 at 12:42 am Reply

    I realize that this was your first entry, nearly a year ago, but I thought it was the perfect place to enter my first sober comment. Nearly 40 hours ago I took my last drink! After years of blackouts, hangovers, drinking to get drunk every night, I said “NO MORE!” I found your blog and said, its time. I want my life back. So, here I am. The first time in countless years that I havent been drunk. And as an act of liberation I just poured everything in the liquor cabinet down the drain. It was scare but empowering at the same time! I could have given all the many bottles to friends, but I needed to see it all going down the drain. Keep writing. You are an inspiration to me.

    • secondchancewontblowit July 15, 2014 at 5:22 am Reply

      Congrats! I am 48 days in. Its been very hard.feel free to email me if you need someone. This blog hasn’t been super active but I found it helpful too!

      • A guy in Memphis July 15, 2014 at 11:19 am

        thank you very much! Today is only my second morning of getting up without a pounding headache. Falling a sleep has been difficult but the way I feel now is worth it!

      • secondchancewontblowit July 15, 2014 at 4:31 pm

        I found an app for my phone that reminds me how well I am doing every day. You can set when you get the reminder etc. but its been nice. its called “I am sober”. Maybe for a while try reading or journalling before bed to slow down the thoughts at night? Keep it up! my email is if you need anything!

  7. galsober August 19, 2014 at 2:01 am Reply

    I just found your blog tonight on my “Day 1” . What you are describing is me to a “T” ….. thank you for sharing as I needed this tonight!!

  8. lilypotpan September 1, 2014 at 2:08 pm Reply

    I am on day one! I want to say thank you as your blog inspired me to get sober! Well done and thanks for the inporation

  9. Goingtotry April 6, 2015 at 8:38 pm Reply

    Weird that today I realised that I needed to take stock of myself and googled blogs on not drinking and came across yours! It pretty much describes me and then I looked at the date!! I can do this too and well done to you.

    • soberjournalist April 6, 2015 at 8:40 pm Reply

      Go for it, it’s so worth it. I’m celebrating 2 years sober today. Good luck!

  10. […] Beer, Mrs. D Is Going Without, Drunky Drunk Girl, Time and the Bottle, Throwing Words Down, the Sober Journalist, and on Crying Out Now, where women share their stories anonymously. I heard it on the Booze Free […]

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