Day 280: Giant Ego

This is going to be a shortie.

Basically, I’ve been experiencing a few cravings and quite a lot of thoughts about drinking these days.

I’ve been daydreaming about social gatherings with friends, vacation, going to the beach, hot naked dudes (just kidding… not!), cold IPAs and laughter and carelessness and swimming pools and in-person connection…. All the things that have been prohibited and missing for these last few months of lonely, repetitive quarantining, and the intense, complicated times that we are specifically facing here in the USA.

I don’t know if it’s because this is my first “sober spring” and it’s been a while since I’ve experienced a “sober-first”, or just because quarantine and nonstop work are starting to really take a toll on me (especially as my summer is going to be work work work), but these past couple of weeks have been hard. I am just so sick of spending all day in front of a laptop, of going on the same walk over and over again, and trying to force myself to do yoga and meditate instead of eating chocolate in the evenings. 

On a whim, I decided to create an Instagram account for my sobriety blog yesterday. But little did I know, this ego trip would end up fueling the cravings!

Yep, when I saw how many online sobriety accounts there are out there, I got competitive and fantasized about running a successful Instagram account with thousands of followers. But then I imagined myself one or two years into the future, and saw it in all too clearly….

The Sobriety Social Media Curse: When you are a “successful” sobriety blogger/instagrammer, you can’t drink ! You can’t f**k up. So many people follow, monitor and “depend” on your success. If you do f”””k up, prepare to face the shame of coming out to everyone. I know that if I had a slip up, a part of me would want to lie and keep it to myself – which would create SO MUCH guilt and inadequacy. A true curse.

I could only run a successful sobriety Instagram account if I was prepared to publicly admit that I “failed”. For now, all that sounds much too stressful. For now, I am grateful to only have 17 followers 🙂

After giving it some thought, I believe the Instagram fantasy ended up feeding the craving fire because it put me in the “I can never drink again” mindset, which is counter productive and the opposite of the “one day at a time” attitude that works so well.

BUT IF YOU HAVE INSTAGRAM, FOLLOW ME. lol

Anyway…

These days, I’ve also been thinking about the 1 year mark, which is slowly approaching. And when I say “thinking”, I mean thinking about whether I am “ready to moderate”, or have “just one drink”, to “celebrate” having come so far. Sigh.

At least I haven’t been planning on drinking before then. So that’s another 3 months left to gain in wisdom and maturity, and hopefully feel differently. Honestly, I would feel like a complete failure if I “cracked” before then. But as for many people who have recently hit that mark, thoughts about “what comes next” are beginning to creep in. I even found a bullshit excuse to add to the mix: my 1 year sobriety anniversary (September 4th) will more or less coincide with my PhD defense…. and my brain automatically goes to “celebrate with a beer”.

But here’s the glitch.

I picture myself celebrating 1 year of sobriety. Proud, happy, refreshed and rested, or what have you. Holding that beer.

Then my addict brain immediately kicks in… “One beer will never be enough. You’ll beed 2 beers to feel satisfied”. And then the cycle starts…. “Wait, 2 is already too much, it’s basically a failure which proves you’re still a compulsive drinker, way to go, Anne! And anyway, after two beers you’ll probably be quite disinhibited so instead of being ‘reasonable’ and feeling frustrated, you might as well let loose and celebrate with one night of drinking as much as you want, then you’ll get back on track”……. “Ok, well if you do one night, maybe you can do one week of drinking, then do another year of sobriety?”………

Hmmmmmm….. my brain is basically telling me to celebrate 1 year of sobriety and becoming a PhD by going on a crazy drinking binge, thereby proving my complete inability to moderate, and thus reemphasizing the importance of keeping the sobriety thing going.

On the other hand, because I am simultaneously being tortured by my FOMO-fearing brain (yes, that’s a pleonasm), for now I have decided to settle for a compromise: until/unless I am ready to “celebrate” with just one beer (i.e. to tolerate the “frustration” of stopping after just one and not giving in to the urge to keep going, i.e. to moderate for real), then I cannot drink.

And guess what…. for now, the prospect of having to stop after just one makes the whole think kind of not worth it. I’d rather not open that giant, gaping, impossible to quench, thirsty pandora’s box…. I’d rather let the whole thing sleep instead of stirring up the shit and awakening the craving monster. It’s just not worth the effort. I remember all the struggle and suffering and shame caused by my inability to moderate and how hard it was to quit in the beginning. It feels easier to just not drink.

That’s how I’m navigating the 2020 Great Spring Temptation: I am remaining sober out of laziness, out of the unwillingness to make the effort of moderation. LOL. 

P.S. Big shout-out to my friend Jim at Life Beyond Booze https://wordpress.com/read/blogs/165338330/posts/527 who is back in the blogging community and whose last post prompted me to write this one. You should all check out his blog if you haven’t already!

Hang in there folks !

xxx

Anne

Published by nomorebeer

Learning how sobriety helps you ENJOY life.

29 thoughts on “Day 280: Giant Ego

  1. Stay strong, Anne. Keep all the positives of sobriety and all you’ve learned in these past 9 months at the forefront of your thoughts….. the insidiousness of this disease got me every time I allowed myself to ruminate/fantasize about to drink or not to drink. Even though I didn’t think my brain was serious about it. Not even sure I’m making sense right now– ignore if I’m not. Going to bed.🙃

    Liked by 2 people

  2. This is hilarious, your desire to become a sober social media star making you want to drink! Well, not actually hilarious but… I get it though. The smaller support group means less shame if you DO end up drinking. I’ll follow you on Instagram one day when I’m ready to not be anonymous anymore! I love your whole thought process to get yourself through it though. Too lazy to moderate might become my new mantra!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Anne – To me alcohol is a trickster and a liar as that was my experience for 40 years. It’s no reward. How I wish I was so much stronger years ago to have stopped the repetitive madness. It takes courage and much love for oneself to live outside the fog. It’s not an easy task by any means turning your ship to a new direction after traveling on societies autopilot for years. Many adjustments take place when you’re awake behind the wheel. The rewards are Great though for those who finally give themselves a chance. No guilt. No judging. Just learn along the way.

    Dwight✌️

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Anne this is so honest! I think the soberversarys make it worse! since I passed a year I’ve come closer to drinking than any time since the early days – as you say the ‘what next?’ – like you I know that I don’t want one I want to get drunk and that tells me I’m not dealing with moderation in my head – I have the smoking to deal with but no goals with alcohol and the pandemic has made everyone stressed, miserable etc with the lack of connections and made being drunk seem like a feasible option again at times. We’ve got this though! 💞💞💞

    Liked by 1 person

    1. yes, we do !!!! I think it’s better to get all those thoughts out than to let them “fester” inside and ruminate. Now I feel like they belong in the past, on this little blog page, and I can move on to more useful thoughts. Also, I want to remain honest so that this blog reflects the reality of my recovery, not a pretty Instagram picture of it 🙂 xxxx ❤ Anne

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Anne, we started this journey at almost the same time and now having our temptation moments at the same time as well. I sometimes wonder if you could be my long lost love child – If so you poor, poor thing. It’s not easy this sober lark. We gave up something we liked and were bloody good at. But we are better for not drinking. If everything goes totally tits up and the world is about to end, then we’ll get together, buy a case and get rat arsed! Until then united we stand! X

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Ah Kathmandu in 87 – I remember it well. Heady days – always wondered what happened to that lovely woman I met there in those cramped dusty streets. I think back and … (continued on p 326 of Jim’s bullshit diaries)

        Like

  6. I honestly feel like everything you have wrote here about tempting thoughts is exactly how I’ve been feeling! I committed to sober spring which is so close to being over that the natural questions of “what’s next” have started to creep in & I too am constantly finding myself battling that pesky inner voice. Thank you for sharing – it’s helped me feel less alone & like I’m not going crazy! Stay strong – together, we got this 😊💜

    Like

    1. Thank you Paige. Conversely, your comment makes me feel like I am not alone and not going crazy 🙂 I think feeling wobbly is ok, and for me saying it out loud / putting it in writing helps me gather my strength again so I can stand with you and everyone else on this journey 🙂 Thank you so much for your words, yes, we got this !!!! xxx Anne

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Oh Anne … firstly putting a shout out to Jim is CRAZY! 😂😂 Secondly, I have a sober Instagram account … I started it when I started this blog. I rarely check it out now but I like scanning it sometimes. Look me up. Thirdly, I am with you. The thought of unleashing the drink monster and having to get it back in the box just feels so much like hard work. I really can’t be bothered with it all. So yes I miss the romance of taking that first sip but the reality just makes me feel a little sick. When does this sobriety thing get sorted though? 🤷‍♀️ xxx

    Like

    1. Oooo ! Do you have the same name ? I’m definitely looking you up 🙂 I don’t know when it gets sorted… maybe when LIFE gets sorted? i.e. at the end ? gulp 🙂 Still, plenty of joy in it all. How’s your mood been? Mine has drastically improved in the last couple of days, I feel back to normal. xxx ❤ Anne

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Yep and it’s under ‘ditching the wine’ ..

        Yep, I seem to have come out of the low mood. Whether it was the meds or the time of the month or both but I’m thankful I feel ok again. I’m reducing dose again this weekend and starting to taper to nothing 😬😬 xx

        Like

      2. oh wowowow congrats on being almost meds free 🙂 I’m a couple of weeks away I think. I don’t know if it’s even possible to halve these half pills but I’ll give it a shot. xxx Anne

        Liked by 1 person

      3. I can’t halve mine now so I have to alternate days. I’m still a couple of weeks off .. I’ll take it slow. I didn’t think they were having any impact but my reaction at reducing the dose proves they were!! Xx

        Like

  8. I’m on IG as well…I will follow you! Mine is not just for sobriety, it’s my real life and sobriety is a big part of it.
    Anyhoo, I commented on Jim’s post and said I think that the warm weather can tempt the crafty drink impulse as well. It helps if you recognize it for what it is and move on. Hugs. 💕

    Liked by 2 people

    1. awwww thanks for adding me Collette ! I love the integration between sober life and real life. How absurd to separate them!!! I hope one day I will be able to reconcile these aspects so seamlessly 🙂 Yes absolutely, I needed to get it off my chest and move on. I feel much better now and more centered 🙂 big big hugs ❤ xxx Anne

      Liked by 1 person

  9. I remember when I would stop drinking for a bit, and then buy champagne to celebrate! A friend once asked me, “How do you know you’re an alcoholic?” I told her, “Because one drink is never enough.” xxx

    Like

    1. Hahahaha yes, isn’t that absurd? I am happy I am not the only one to have gone through this process, and to be mindful enough to realize that “one is never enough” might be around for life. But for now, one day at a time. xxx Thanks for commenting !!! ❤ Anne

      Liked by 1 person

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