As you may well know, I have recently decided to cut alcohol completely from my life and seek a better way of living by becoming sober and completely abstaining from alcohol. However things have taken a rocky start.
It all started this Wednesday when I decided to go for an innocent round of golf with my friends to get out of the house and avoid the temptation of drinking. Well the round went very well, apart from getting stuck behind four old men towards the end, and we finished our round just before 5pm.
Afterwards we decided to get some food from a nearby pub and the fool inside me told me I could have a few beers and be okay. However one turned into two and then two turned into another four day long binge. I have been completely sober all day today and hope to continue it this way. I now really do know that I cannot risk even one beer if I’m going to make sober living a major part of my life.
With one week left of my holidays I fully intend to make the most of these last days. In order to do this I must avoid the temptation of alcohol.
I’ve said countless times in my life, “I’ll just have a couple”. Every time I let myself down by drinking silly amounts. Once again this proved to be true last night.
I decided to go and see a good friend (also a heavy drinker) in a pub. Convinced I could go and just have a couple I was counting down the clock until 6pm. I finally got to my beautiful local pub and the barmaid saw me and said “long time no see” and before I could reply she was already pouring my first pint.
I tried to drink slowly and pace myself but 2 hours later I was on my 8th pint and starting to feel sorry for myself. I remember looking at the clock and thinking that my local shop closes soon, so I and my mate decided to leave heading straight to the shop where we both purchased a crate of 10 cans each. The rest of the night is all a bit of a blur and I awoke at midday today with a banging head but a mighty miracle that I didn’t go back for more.
With me, like with many people who have a drinking problem or addictive personality, one really is too many and two really is never enough.
As I sit here listening to Unknown Pleasures – Joy Division, on what will be my first fully sober Saturday in as long as I can remember, I cant help but feel how my passion for music has both increased and decreased my drinking habits.
I have always had a passion for music whether it’s going to see live bands, spinning records alone in my room or writing songs on one of my many guitars. However many of my favourite musicians and influences have struggled with alcohol abuse in the past with many of them not around to tell their stories anymore.
Artists such as John Bonham, Keith Moon, Amy Winehouse, Jim Morrison, Bon Scott and Jimi Hendrix all unfortunately had problems with alcohol abuse which certainly contributed to their demise and ultimately their deaths. I like many young, aspiring musicians looked at these artists and bought into the myth that alcohol was what fuelled their creativity and made them successful. On reflection I now realise that all these musicians were much more creative and successful before alcohol took hold and now believe being a Rock N Roll star is about creating top quality music rather than seeing how wasted you can get.
Although music is keeping me busy tonight and taking my mind off drinking, I am wondering how I will manage when I start playing or watching music in a live venue again where alcohol is freely available.
Will I be able to stay sober on those nights? I guess time will tell.
Thursday 13th of August 2015 I was, as usual, right in the middle of a binge. Sat in my bed, which I hadn’t left since the previous Friday, with the curtains drawn and pretty much dead to the world, when all of a sudden I got up with the can of beer I had been nursing for the past 10 minutes, walked to the toilet and proceeded to pour it directly into the sink. I automatically felt an immense feeling of freedom and certainty that this would be the end of the last binge I ever have.
I always loved a drink, from the very first time I got drunk in 2005 at the age of 15, to the epic binges I would have on and off again between 2013 and 2015. I often found myself as a teenager looking forward to getting drunk on a Friday night with four beers, to being 24 and looking forward to breaks from work where I could have week long binges on as much as 30 beers a day.
Although only in my mid Twenties I feel that alcohol has become somewhat a problem having been hospitalised seriously twice in the past two years. Over the last 18 months I found myself constantly questioning my drinking and telling myself “I need to quit and I will quit” with very little success.
Now, at the age of 25, with a very important job which I am very proud of and love I feel enough is enough and have decided to completely abstain from alcohol (hopefully) and live a much more fun, fulfilling life.
This blog will be an account of my journey from drunk to sober with many tales of what I got up to during my binges, how I ended up in hospital and the different person I became when I was drinking.