Out Tonight

Tonight was my book club’s annual Christmas outing.  We usually buy books for the needy and then go to dinner.  We mixed it up a little tonight and went shopping first and then dinner.  We shopped at War Chest, Woman At Risk. Items are handmade and lovely. We went to dinner. I ordered a tonic and lime. Some of the girls knew I had stopped drinking, I initially said for health reasons.  A friend who had not attended the last couple months meetings was shocked to hear that I quit drinking in July.  I surprised myself as I said, “I was drinking too much.  It had become a problem so I quit.” It felt good to be honest, these are my friends I’ve known for years.  I drank with them for years. So now it’s out there, I’m out there.

The girl that was unaware looked at me and said, “boy, I wish I had your strength and will.” I always drank the most, she ran a close second.  Maybe my honesty will get her to slow down.

Speaking the truth was so cathartic, it made me feel very free, more weight off my shoulders.  I still don’t like the A word,  maybe with time I’ll get used to it. But I don’t mind saying that my drinking was getting out of hand.

We had a great time, I think I laughed the most sans alcohol and I paid attention to my friends, really paid attention. I wasn’t constantly wondering when I could order another glass of wine and trying to get the others to do the same so I didn’t feel guilty. There are lots of firsts on this sober journey.



4 thoughts on “Out Tonight

  1. Yes these little gatherings – especially during the holidays – can be stressful. I found it very empowering to admit my alcoholism. I’ve told my story to my husband, two daughters, neighbor, and two other good friends. My family was a necessary conversation. The other three …well I just felt like being transparent with them. None of the three are big drinkers anyway, so probably didn’t understand the enormity of it. It just felt good to be “real.”

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