Wednesday 22 February 2017

Round 3, Day 526: Quiet over here. Still sober though

I've gone quiet here on the blog, in part because I'm going through one of my depressions and this one is more sharp in the tooth than what I'm used to. I'm less sad and more angry than I've often been when I'm low, and that doesn't lend itself to social interaction much, even online interaction. Not that I'm angry all the time. It's more like 90% absolutely nothing, 10% rage. Neither is much fun. But I'm finding a way to do things that might be enjoyable and even enjoying some of them. I'll get through. These days I see how much I relied on drinking to get past the worst depression. Without that, I don't have the emotional release and the built-in checking out that booze brings. Now I'm fully in the world, for good and bad. Except when I'm reading fiction, and then I'm in that world. So I read a lot. I think it helps.

Still, I recognize that it's better not to be drinking, and I have no intention of going back to that. Every now and then I have a pang. I'm usually caught off guard when I'm reading something set in blustery weather and the character comes in from all that drear and has a wine or a scotch, and I wonder whether I could just step out of the grey and have a drink. But it doesn't take much thinking to see that it's never worked out for me before and there's no reason to expect that would change, and I see that tea or coffee or sparking water would do just fine, even for the imaginary me who has just stepped in from the imaginary nasty weather.

It's now the longest stretch I've ever been sober. Last time after around 15 months, I decided to drink again. I guess coming up to that time I was a bit worried that I might have to face rethinking all that again, but I didn't. For me, it's never been about a sudden urge to drink that I can't counter. Instead, I have in the past been sucked into thinking my way back to drinking, building a case for why I should try it again. People have laughed at that, but it does give me a strong foundation now. It would be a joke to think that drinking would make anything better these days. I suppose it's often a joke to think that. Not a very funny one either.

Hi to any blog friends who are still out here. This post is really meant as just a quick check in, in case anyone noticed I was quiet and thought I'd fallen back to the booze. I have not. I am here and sober and living. That's good enough for now. Peace to you all, and joy if you find it.


  1. Very much still out here and very glad to hear from you! Though I'm sorry to hear you are living through a dark phase. I like what you say about reading as low-impact escapism... I'm sure that down the centuries people have used stories, whether written down or in the oral tradition - to take them to a different place in their heads, and I think that can be a hugely valuable resource. I would rather give up cheese than reading, and that's saying something!!

    I hear what you say about the logical arguments you have made in the past to re-start drinking, and am glad to hear that you feel at little risk of framing such arguments again. The realisation that such arguments are not 'right' for us is a precious gift that I think can never be taken away from us.

    I hope that signs of spring come in your heart sooner rather than later. (Perhaps your blogging is an early evidence of such?) In the meantime know that we are here whenever you want us, keeping warm and safe around the woodstove of sobriety along with a steaming mug of something hot and delicious...can I tempt you to an elderberry and echinacea tea, perhaps?! Much love, Prim xx

  2. Hey, glad to hear from you. I'm with Prim, I would rather give up cheese and chocolate AND coffee rather than reading - getting lost in a novel in one of my greatest comforts when I'm feeling low. It sounds as if you are working through these dark patches with courage and fortitude. We are all still here for you. xxxx

  3. I am always delighted to see a post by you appear in my reader.but never for one minute did I think you had gone back to drinking.
    The black dog comes to visit me too and I have had periods similar to 90% nothing 10% rage and days when those ratios have flipped. Books, mainly fiction are my salvation and escape although occasionally I go for something non-fiction mental health or medical works well.
    Feeling all the feelings sober is raw and occasional suffocating, despite all advise to get out, get active, don't give in to depression, sometimes you just have to check out and allow the brain to figure out what's next. The more I live and accept that depression is an occasional caller the more I am able to allow it to move on at its own pace.
    I hope soon you start to notice a little more happiness, peace and energy appearing in the percentages. For me, as soon as I see my first blue robin's egg or hear the geese returning, I feel an immediate shift in mood, Spring is on its way.

  4. I'm sorry your depression has sucked you in. I hope it leaves quickly.
    I know that grey all too well.
    Take care. It is great to heard from you. I hope spring brings some relief.

  5. Sorry to hear you're having a low time of it.. hugs from NZ xx

  6. Hi Thirsty!
    I am so glad to hear from you!
    I am sorry you are struggling with depression.
    I understand this very well.
    As you know, I love reading too!
    It is pure pleasure.
    I am sending you a big hug, and lots of love!
    PS - I have missed you!

  7. I may have only commented a few times, so you maybe don't remember me, but I know in the past when I commented you always replied, which for someone who also suffers from depression too is just a tiny boost. Be proud of yourself for this longest time. You are amazing. March is around the corner and a new month can bring new promise. Take care. xx

  8. Hello Thirsty, just sending some love your way to lighten the load. Thinking of you, love from The Sober Garden x.

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