Sober First Class

First my flight was delayed. Then they changed the airlines. But it was changed to a direct flight rather than having a connection. I would actually arrive an hour earlier. I thought that sounded too good.

Then, as boarding, they tell me my seat had to be changed to balance out the plane. I walked onto the flight with a pissed off attitude. When checking in, I picked a seat in the back of the plane, in a row of three, and I was supposed to be the only passenger in it. I better not have been moved to a full row!

Nope. I was moved to Economy Plus for free. I got upgraded to the seats with more legroom. I had one person in my row, but I guess I shouldn’t complain since I could stretch more. Awww the perks of having a frequent flyer membership! I got settled. Took off my shoes. Started reading. Then a flight attendant brings me a new ticket. “Seat 2f” she says. I thank her and stare at it confused. Is this for my return flight?

“Go to First Class please.”

Woot! Yea! First class baby! I grabbed my stuff, shoved my feet into my shoes, and shuffled to the front without even tying my laces. This should be an awesome flight!
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Then why do I keep feeling dread? Like too many good things just happened. Like I am at the top of the roller coaster and I know the scary, downhill part is next. It is not even like I won the lottery or received some amazing life news. I got a better flight and a better seat on a plane. Am I just used to disappointment? Like I feel it is expected.

Since I got to my seat late, the attendant asked if I wanted a cup of water. She did not have time to get me anything else. THANK YOU! No way to tempt me with free booze. “Yes water would be lovely.” Now let’s see how I handle the next 6 hours. “Do you have O’Douls?”

… (an hour later) The woman next to me had white wine.  I could smell it.  It smelled like cheap wine.  Chardonnay?  Then the attendant asked if I wanted wine with my meal.  No thanks.  I really have no desire. And it feels awesome to not have that desire.

… (two hours later) She has had 4 glasses.  They are small.  She is now asleep. I keep smelling the unfinished wine that is sitting on our shared console. I am reading but I keep getting distracted by the scent.  It smells good now.  Cheap or not. But… I can’t remember what it tastes like.  I am enjoying the scent and I don’t REALLY want to sip it. No. Does one want to sip poison even if you enjoy the smell?  I do not want to taste the wine nor taste the guilt that would follow.

We got dessert. A nice ice cream sundae. That is better than cheap wine!

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Then I napped. I woke up to a beautiful sunset out my window.
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I checked my phone after landing. Had a few messages from bloggers. A few wanted advice to quit drinking. It reaffirmed my decision to not have free cheap wine!

*This blog was actually written at the beginning of my trip and before dealing with my unsupportive friends.

Mistake 140- After my first DUI and I had to stay on a friend of a friend’s couch, I mentioned that I made many mistakes. Let me try to remember them all because I did not write them in my journal from back then. (All my journal entries from back then were just very depressing thoughts.)

The friend I was staying with was a gay guy in the Navy and he had a lot of other gay friends stay over a bunch. I think there was one couch and if someone was staying on it, I got the floor. I was not really a friend anyways. He was doing our mutual friend a favor by letting me stay. Maybe there were two couches?

I remember one night, I brought a guy back to the house. I knew this guy already. So he wasn’t some stranger I picked up in the club that night. But I was very trashed and we had sex on the living room on the floor. With a gay guy on the couch! He started to stop me and say we shouldn’t cause someone else was there but he says I said “it’s okay. He is gay.”

Drunk logic?

The guy that owned the house was very angry. I spent the next week trying to avoid him and the other guys that always stayed over. I kept apologizing via emails. Finally, he cooled down enough just to promise me I would never do that again. I promised. But alcoholics do not always keep their promises.

Humankind

I have been noticing people being mean lately. It seems a lot of people have a short fuse. Is there a comet above affecting us?

I was in a fast food restaurant waiting for my food. As mine was called, a man pushed ahead to complain to the young man behind the counter that his food has been sitting on that counter waiting for a long time and getting cold. I wanted to say “it is fast food. Not immediate food.” I think they were waiting for the fries to be finished to add to his order but that was not quick enough for him. He was behind me in line. My order was not cold. He just seemed like an angry man. I felt sorry for the boy working there. He had to summon the manager.

Then on my flight, the flight attendant asked everyone to turn off our cell phones and all electronics as we were landing. She said the reason was because we were flying at a lower landing. She had to come remind the guy next to me because he kept his on. (He did not have headphones for an excuse that he did not hear. He was just ignoring her.) He reluctantly did so and loudly said “8 flights in one week and that was the first time I had to do that! For crying out loud!” He had to go 10 minutes without his phone and he was pissed off?

I am thinking too much about my friends P and C. I had to stop by there place on the way to the airport because I left my laptop plug. They handed it to me (after some debate because C thought I was mistaken and it was her brother’s.  Then she found another cord still plugged into her brother’s laptop. Did she think I came back to steal a cord?) But I got it, said bye from the door, and left. They did not bother to get up to walk me to the door nor hug it. It seems they think this alcoholism disease is contagious. Or they already seem they have symptoms. “Get her problems out of here!” It was like I had the plague.

I am not going to try to figure out why. I am still hurt by P’s comments that helping people with addictions is a “lost cause.” I am hurt they both kept trying to encourage me to sip. I feel ignorant that I did not realize there was not much to our friendship besides drinking. But I can try to move on. Toxic humans can be contagious.

Mistake 139- About a year after my first DUI, I had a job start date delayed. It was going to be delayed 3 months! They wanted me to get an alcohol and drug dependency evaluation done first. I already moved to that city and began renting a house. I had to call my old job and beg for a temporary job back. They allowed me to come back but to work as a “fill in”. Basically, I only worked when someone called out or they were very busy. It was not steady but it was some money. I spent those months living on a friend of a friend’s couch. I did not have my driver’s license due to the DUI and this guy lived a mile from my job. I also partied a lot while staying there! He was a party guy so we went out a lot. Or I would beg rides from other friends. Or I would pay $40 to the club and just beg rides home. I was depressed almost the whole time. I wrote a lot of suicidal thoughts in my journal. It was a low point in my life and I self-medicated with alcohol.

AND I STILL GOT ANOTHER DUI 4 YEARS LATER!

I made a fool out of myself drunk a lot while staying on that guy’s couch. He never talked to me again after I left.

Sober Concert

A friend invited me to a concert in a park. It was free. It was a band I did not know. But I wanted to see her again. We haven’t lived in the same area for about 4 years and she was near the city I am visiting before she moves overseas.

I loved the show. And since it was in a public park, no booze. It is the kind of show most of my friends would suggest sneaking in alcohol. I have become good at hiding my drinks. Water bottles have been very useful for that.

The opening acts were dancers. Some hip hop type dancing. It was college age kids who learned the dance moves in a program from when they were teens. It was one of those programs to keep urban kids off the streets. I was impressed. I got a little teary eyed thinking “those kids are doing that sober. They are dancing and having fun. I can learn from them.”

My friend and I sat on the ground inbetween acts and caught up. I mentioned a few things about why I stopped drinking. She didn’t seem to have a problem with it. I can not remember if she ever saw me messed up but I am sure she heard the stories. Either way, she seemed more supportive than the two who I thought of as very close friends. She even said it must be nice to wake up in the morning with a clear head and not have to plan a sober driver.

Then I spotted a friend JF. I jumped up to say hello. He invited me to come join other friends that were sitting on a hill watching the concert. This is a group of party friends. They are all friends with P and C, my friends that were unsupportive all weekend. I was excited to see them but worried how they would react to my sobriety. My friend and I joined them anyway.

First, I don’t think anyone had alcohol. (Like I said, public park where it was not allowed.) Second, my sobriety never came up with them. And third, I learned that I can have fun at a concert without booze. And I CAN DANCE SOBER! The music was sort of Latino mixed with Brazilian and electronic. I was shaking my butt and moving my hips.

I am not sure how things will be at other events with these friends. But I feel JF would be supportive. He offered me drinks at an event last November and I declined because I was on a drinking break. He said “good for you!” Not like P and C who criticized me for taking a drinking break around the holidays. But it cheered me up to think I have some support in that group of friends.

Oh and I forgot… I went to an AA meeting today. It was in the back of a coffee shop. I thought it was great. I shared about my experience with P and C. I cried. A few people came up to me after to give me advice and share words. I was glad none of them told me get a sponsor or anything about working the steps. They didn’t shove the AA dogma down my throat. They told me to come back to this meeting whenever I am in the area. And for some reason, there was something about that meeting that made me think I will start trying to program more. I will wait until I move out here to get a sponsor. This meeting somehow made AA more attractive.
And they gave out chips. I think I really have resentment against the meetings back where I live for not giving chips except for 90 days and anniversaries.

Mistake 138- The day after P and C’s wedding, I spent it with the best man Playboy, two of the groomsmen and the wife of one of those groomsmen. We had lunch. I was the only one drinking beer at lunch. Then we decided to go to a park. We had all of the leftover booze from the wedding in our vehicles. We had a few bottles of wine and Solo cups. We sat in the park in the late afternoon drinking.

I was friends with the one groomsman. The married one did not seem to like me from the moment I met him. His wife was okay but seemed as if she was tolerating me. I got very paranoid about why they did not like me. My answer to the paranoia or maybe in a way to forget it was to drink more wine.

As the sun was going down, the one groomsman, who I was good friends with, had to leave. The married couple and Playboy wanted to go to a nearby casino. I should not have driven but I did. We all had separate cars. I lost them along the way.  I caught up with the three of them in the parking lot of the casino.

I think Playboy and I started to argue about something before even leaving the park. Whatever the argument was about continued in the parking lot. It continued all the way into the casino. It was something about money I owed him for some booze. I told him if we go right to the ATM, I will get him the money. The three of them were walking quickly like they wanted to get away from me. So as soon as we entered, I got stubborn and walked off to a restaurant. I stopped in the gift shop to pick up some gossip magazine (which I normally never read) to read while I ate alone. I ordered more wine with dinner. I sat there at this table alone, trying to read, and crying while I ate.

I went to my car. I knew I was in no condition to drive. I slept. Playboy came by my car and banged on the window. Then he started to yell at me for being dramatic. I told him I was in no condition to drive. But I was so upset at him waking me up, I decided to leave the casino. I drove 2 hours to my friends’ house. I do not think I was legal to drive but I guess that nap in the car sobered me up enough to not be obviously drunk.

Reunion… Success!

I went to my reunion last night that I was nervous about two months ago. It is amazing how I feel different since writing that post. Back in April, I was so worried about my desire to drink. Now, I was more worried I would be late. Or bored that I had nothing in common with my old classmates. Or my skin was too broken out or I looked too fat.

I was not worry I would ruin my sobriety.

I arrived and walked around to try to recognize anyone. I spotted one familiar face talking to a group of people. I went to the bar and ordered an unsweetened ice tea.  I wanted to walk up to the group armed.

I had a good time. No one asked me if I wanted a beer. No one asked me why I wasn’t drinking. We all shared stories of where our lives had gone the past twenty years. We shared stories from back in school. We shared travel stories and destinations we would like to go. I was there for three hours. There were a few moments when I thought I would like to just sip someone’s beer. But the desire was not strong.

As far as my unsupportive friends I am staying with, they continue to make ignorant comments. At lunch today, they made a big deal out of finding a place with good cocktails. Then they tasted each others and offered me a sip. “Oh, so you can’t even sip it?” We went to a farmers market where they wanted to stop at a booth to taste beer cupcakes. I kept walking. We bought some sausages and the guy selling them suggested boiling them in water or beer before grilling. They both said “and we got plenty of beer for that!”

I was trying not to make a big deal out of it. But once in a while, I would share one of my drunk stories. They kept quiet. I felt I wanted to stress reasons why I am not drinking, but I guess they just don’t understand that I can not even handle a little bit.

It seems they enjoyed my drunk mistakes. They enjoyed me being the embarassment. They enjoyed me falling over and stories of my one night stands. I remember once I commented about wondering if anyone I slept with would be at an event and he said with a laugh “well who HAVEN’T you slept with”.

Then tonight, I invited a friend over to join us for dinner. She asked if she could bring anything. I told her I quit drinking but P and C might like beer or wine. She said she wouldn’t be drinking alcohol because she had a long drive.  When she got here, my friends didn’t seem to understand why she did not want even one drink. “Not even one?” They drank. They drank lots. I could tell that C was drunk soon. She even decided to bake some dessert that she almost burnt because she forgot about it. I sat there thinking  “I am really enjoying being sober. I am glad I am not acting drunk.” I still enjoyed the night because of the conversations. My friend had a lot of great stories to share about her travels. When P and C were out of the room, I overheard them discussing going out or not. C said “well if they just want to sit and talk, let them.” I felt they thought we were boring for not wanting to go to a bar or club.

When my friend was leaving, I offered to walk her to her car which was parked in another parking lot. C offered to drive us there because she needed to move her car. I offered to move her car. I did not feel she should be driving. I even asked her and got the response of “yea, no problem!” I then realized all the times I was drunk and said I was fine, I was too nervous to admit I wasn’t. There were times I should not have been driving but I was embarrassed I was so drunk. “Yea I am okay” was a denial of how much I drank and my problem.

We had her drive us down to the other lot. She did drive okay. But I am almost sure that she would have received a DUI if she was pulled over. Thankfully it was a quick drive there, drop off my friend, and then back to our lot. I did not want to insist of driving or refusing her ride because I did not want to come off as the sober preacher. I risked my life by getting in the car with her driving to avoid offending her.

Once again, being around drunk people helped reinforce my desire to stay sober. And I might mourn this relationship if it end. But I know I love myself enough to put my sobriety before anyone and anything else.

Mistake 137- I met my friend that came for dinner last night many years in a chat room. I once was a moderator of the chat room. I was supposed to warn people who were acting wrong or misbehaving “in” the room and then block them if they did not behave.

I woke up one morning hungover and signed into the chat room. A cyber friend started to tell me how I was so funny the night before in the chat room. I did not remember what I said. As a moderator, I had access to previous conversations and private IMs. So I went back to check what I said.

I told my friend I was surprised he could comprehend my typing. But it basically was typos in capital letters stating how I needed to get laid, I wanted to be fucked, and I wanted pussy. Over and over. I was so embarrassed. It was an international chatroom. Did I offend anyone? He said I was entertaining.

I demoted myself from being moderator. I told my friend that gave me the position that I was not qualify to tell others how to behave when I could not control myself when drunk.

Sorry if anyone reading this is offended by my curse words. I feel I need to use them at times to fully express my story, situations, and feelings.

Unsupportive Friends

I am staying with my good friends P and C this weekend. They just happen to be the last people with whom I got drunk. I was nervous about being sober around them. I was worried about their reaction. And I am now starting to wonder if these are two friends I might have to let slip away.

The first hour or two, there was no mention of my sobriety. I started asking them about their house hunting. Then we talked about my living situation and job. We talked about some events in our lives the past few months.  We talked about my family. I was happy that they did not offer me any of the wine they were drinking. But they didn’t offer me anything to drink. I couldn’t help but feel everything seemed awkward.

After a while of offers of nothing, I got up to get myself some water. Then I sat down to continue the conversation. When my glass was empty, he jumped up to offer to refill it. He kept asking if I wanted lemon or grapefruit squeezed in it. They have a soda water machine if I wanted bubbles. I said no thanks but he insisted on lemon. I guess plain water was too strange.

We talked a few more hours and avoided the talk of my sobriety. Then I mentioned that my reunion is at a brewery. I said that is gonna suck. “Oh yea, cause you aren’t drinking?” Yep. I quit. He squirmed and changed the subject.

Later, after she went to bed, it came up again. This time I mentioned I have been sober more than 4 months. He didn’t seem impressed. I said “actually my last drink was with you guys.” I did not hear a “way to go.” No “congratulations”. It seemed like he was mourning. Like that uncomfortable feeling you get when someone says their grandmom died and you do not know what their relationship to their grandmom was like. How should you react?

I tried to tell him how great I felt. How happy I am. I said I was sad that I haven’t lost weight.

“Booze doesn’t affect your weight. Diet and exercise do.” Really? Booze is not included in diet? He told me how he lost weight by cutting out carbs. Isn’t alcohol liquid carbs? He said their diet is 60% veggies and it helps keep them thin. They also eat a lot of fruit. But they also drink a lot. I guess he is thinking of hops and barley as veggies and grape wine as fruit.

I told him my thoughts of going for a degree in psychology. He asked what would I do with that. I said “maybe become a therapists for alcoholics”.
“That is a lost cause.”
I could not believe he said that. He started to say that alcoholics will never change. I said “I DID!” He responded “but that is you. You are different. You have the strength.”
I was fuming. Then I said I have thought of specializing in pregnant women with addictions.  He laughed. “Oh that is really a lost cause!” He said those people don’t want help. I wanted to punch him.

That was when I realized he is not gonna be a supportive friend. This might be my last time I go out of my way to visit them.

It made me want to crawl back in a shell. This is what a lot of society thinks of alcoholics. Do my friends think I am different cause I wasn’t on skid row?

He told me he has been trying to get his wife to cut back. And maybe he will cut back too. Just for his liver. The way he talked about it, I realized he thinks I cut back. He thinks I am moderating now. I can’t think of exactly what he said but it hinted that he thinks I will start drinking again. This is one of my “drinking breaks” with which they are so familiar.

I showed him the photo of my sundae from my first class flight. He said “that would go better with a glass of free champagne.”

Maybe I don’t have as much in common with them as I thought? Maybe boozing was our common thread? I was their maid-of-honor! Maybe in 10 years when they talk about their wedding, they will mention they lost touch with their maid-of-honor because she stopped drinking.

Now I am sitting here in their living room drinking coffee. She went to work. I woke up at 7:30 when she was getting ready. I think she was shocked. Usually I am hungover when I stay here. She told me to wake up P if he is not out of bed in an hour. I kept putting off taking a shower to avoid making him late for work. It is now 2 hours later. The alarm has been going off forever. He keeps hitting snooze. I took a shower. I have to go through their bedroom to get to the bathroom. I purposefully made noise. It didn’t wake him. Maybe if he wasn’t drinking wine until 2am, he would have no problem waking up. I feel waking him up is a lost cause.

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Mistake 136- When they asked me to be maid-of-honor, they also smiled and said “guess who is the best man!” I guess correctly. He is a good-looking guy that P has been forever hinting he wants me to get with. I once asked him “that guy is a playboy! Why do you want us together? He is not the relationship type.” P agreed but said he thinks we could have fun together. So when they giggled about making me and Playboy their witnesses, I felt they were hoping we would hook up.

And during the wedding rehearsal, Playboy started the charm. “You smell nice.” “You look great.” “Your legs look amazing in that skirt.” I accepted the compliments but thought to myself “No way! I am not falling for your lines.” A year before this, he bragged to me about all the young European girls he banged. Now he is trying to seduce me? He opened doors for me the rest of the evening and held the small of my back as I walked past him.

We had a great rehearsal dinner. The couple showed a video they had made of their relationship. When a photo popped up that had me and the best man with them, P nudged me.

I drank a lot of wine at the dinner. Then I took a few of the bridesmaids to get our nails done. I should not have been driving. One of them even made a comment. I even hit a small curb with my rental car.

I was staying in the same hotel as Playboy and a few of the groomsmen. We all decided to take the groom out for drinks while the bride did a few last-minute things with her family. I was not driving this time. So I drank a lot more.

Back at the hotel, the guys he was sharing a room with wanted to go to sleep early. We had a wedding the next day! Playboy asked about continuing drinking in my room. A wife of a groomsman joined us. We had fun. My mini-fridge was stocked with beer.  I kept saying I need to get to bed. I was meeting the bride early the next day for our hair.

Soon it was just me and Playboy in the room. And his charms worked on drunk me. We had sex. But I remember I was at least coherent enough to insist he use a condom. He tried to tell me he is “good” and doesn’t need one. I busted out laughing and reminding him he once confessed to me how he “bangs” a lot of girls.

I was late for the hair appointment. I was hungover. But I drank mimosas to clear that up. I told the bride what happened and she laughed. When I told her he tried to not use a condom, she said “ew!” When the groom found out, he seemed please.

I felt a little uncomfortable around Playboy the next day. We acted like nothing happened. I remember hoarding some anger at myself for sleeping with him. I let myself down.

Returning to the City of My Last Drink

I am flying out for a small vacation this weekend. I travel a lot, so I don’t really think of this as a “vacation”. Just some days off on the other side of the country. I am going for a class reunion. I am no longer looking forward to that because the only events they planned for the weekend are golf and a brewery. Boring and boring (to a sober alcoholic.)

I am also going to visit and stay with some good friends. I had my last drink last time I visited this couple. Last time I saw their place, I woke up on their couch with my last hangover. When I last told her I shouldn’t drink because of my drinking problem, she tried to convince me I do not have a problem.  She told me to just drink a few that night. I got drunk to “prove” my problem to her.

Neither she nor her husband have commented, texted or liked anything on my Facebook when I mentioned I went sober. I created an event for my friends to make plans to see people this weekend and stated in it I quit drinking so meeting in a bar is not something I want to do. The couple still has not said anything except “are you planning to stay with us?”

I am worried they are going to be uncomfortable.  In the three years I have known them, a lot of alcohol was consumed. They used to buy IPAs for my visit. Beer tastings. Wine tastings. We would take turns at mornings of festivals providing the champagne for mimosas but usually the three of us would go through 2 bottles. While we have a friendship outside of drinking, I am really nervous being around them. I feel like stopping at AA to grab a pamphlet for them like “So Your Friend is an Alcoholic” or something similar.

Then again, they have been busy house hunting and trying to get pregnant. Maybe my sobriety is not on their radar. Maybe they did not notice or have time to comment. Maybe she is pregnant and not drinking either. I need to stop thinking everything and everyone revolves around me and my alcoholism.
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Mistake 135- I was visiting the same city I am going to today a few years ago for St Patrick’s day. Since I was drinking in the park at a festival all day, I was trashed by the evening time. I went with my friends to a pub. Not sure if it was an Irish pub or not. A friend knew the band that was playing. He was a regular at this bar.

I ended up getting kicked out of the pub. I was falling all over everyone and passing out. I embarrassed my friends. My friend that was a regular was told to never bring me there again.

Get by with Friends

Sober Señorita posted a great blog a month ago about what she learned her first year sober. I saw a friend today post a link to an article about her blog. Wow! I was so happy and impressed to see someone else on my Facebook post about sobriety that wasn’t me! He is a psych nurse so that might be his interest.  Or maybe he is questioning his drinking. Either way, I was happy someone else was advertising that there are great reasons to go sober!

I reposted the link on my Facebook. I mentioned I have been sober 4 1/2 months and asked if my friends did not understand why I quit drinking, please read the article. I related to her story so much. Ex party girl. A lot of embarrassments and disappointments. Tried to moderate and FAILED! And now so happy (even though still far from a year sober), I can not imagine going back to my drinking life. Sure, I had some good times. But having to daily remember another drunk mistake story is taking the glamour out of my drinking days.

I feel like I am in Clockwork Orange. I have my eyes pried open and I am forced to watch all the horrible things I did when drinking. It is a bizarre therapy. A self therapy. But so far, seems to be working.

As usual when I post on FB something about my sobriety, it did not get many comments or likes. Or not as many as I was hoping. I got more likes for this photo I posted:

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I want to scream “are you intimidated by my sobriety? Think it makes me boring? Worried how it reflects on you?” All I want is a little support from my friends in the form of hitting a like button. Guess they prefer funny memes and cat photos.

I get worried that I talk too much about my sobriety. But I would rather talk and be open about it than shamed and secretive. I read a lot of blogs about people not wanting to tell family and friends. People are worried they will appear weird for not drinking. I guess people are afraid of being judged. I know I am scared of that. Yet I also know I could not get through this without real life support. My friends that have been supportive and lent me an ear have been a huge help. Getting friends to share drunk stories I have forgotten (or blacked out to) has helped with my blog.

I used to get high with a little help from my friends. But now I am getting by with a little help from my friends.

Mistake 134- One friend commented on the link I shared about Sober Señorita’s blog. She said she quit for 6 months but now drinks daily without being a party girl. If she can moderate, good for her. But I told her I don’t remember much of the night we met 5 years ago. She doesn’t either.

We were in Peru. Met up through other aquaintances at a dinner. Then we all went dancing. I remember the place we ate at was upstairs cause I was scared going down the steps drunk. We did a lot of falling down on the way to the club. We danced and drank. I don’t remember much else about the night.

I was supposed to leave the next morning for a trip to see some canyons. I asked the guy I was staying with if I could stay at his place an extra day and leave for my trip the next day. I faked traveler’s diarrhea. But I was actually very hungover.  I wasted a whole day on my trip sleeping off a hangover.

Goals

Soberistas posted a great blog with tips to stay sober. Let me summarize what I took from it:
1- think of the big picture and imagine your life. Think of your future and your relationship with alcohol.
2- break down your future into specific goals you want to achieve.
3- make an action plan for those goals that is SMART (specific, measurable, attainable,  relevant, and time-related.)
4- put plan into action
5- prioritize goals and start a journal
6- reward yourself!

All great ideas and tips! There is mention of losing weight being a goal. There are so many times I am disappointed that I have not lost weight since I quit drinking. Even quitting soda a month ago hasn’t helped. (But I do cheat on the soda bit.) But I think I need to focus my goals on self-improvement and narrow that down to school.

I want to return to school in fall 2015. I have been talking about this for many years. Usually the idea of paying for it is what scares me the most. I keep thinking I will get a job that will reimburse me but then I never stay somewhere long enough to obtain that benefit. In 2012, I settled in one area with the goal of starting an online program. But then I read some countries do not accept distance learning degrees. I did not want to spend the money and time for a degree that might be useless if I wanted to move overseas. I was also worried if I have the self-discipline and control for online courses.

I left my job in that area. I started the process to relocate to another city that had an university program I wanted with classroom lectures rather than online. Then, I could not get the job I wanted there due to my DUIs. (What I consider my rock bottom.) I went back to working contracts and I am planning to relocate to a different city now. I plan to establish residency there by August to reach my goal of 2015 start date.

Sometimes, I actually feel relieved at the obstacles I had to face. Actually, a lot of times I feel relief. If I stayed in that city I settled in for school, going sober would have been challenging. All my friends drank! And they drank lots! I loved my life there. At least one huge party a month surrounded by a lot of small get togethers throughout the week. My friends were fun, creative, and like a family to me. I only lived there a little more than a year but I felt instant acceptance. But it seemed if I was not working, I was drunk. I could not even maintain a work out routine nor regular yoga classes cause I was drunk or hungover. I really started to question my drinking habits at this point but I seriously said I was not ready to quit. After a decade of “drinking breaks” and attempts at moderation, I accepted I was an alcoholic. I was just not willing to change that. I was having too much fun.

And the city I was trying to move to but couldn’t because of my DUIs… that is another drinking city! Big party town. I am sure there are other things to do and it has great restaurants, but living there might have been a sober challenge.
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So my goals now are
1) stay sober,
2) relocate and establish residency in My Dream City,
and 3) obtain my degree. I have already set the wheels in motion. I started online classes to raise my GPA to increase my chances of acceptance. (I had to drop one class already though. I relaized jumping into two online classes was a bit tough and would hurt my GPA more.) And being sober is going to help me achieve better grades. (I hope.)

I still want to lose weight. I just signed up for a 30 day Ab challenge on Facebook (a little late since it started June 1.) But my focus will be on school. And sobriety. I just hope I don’t gain a “freshman fifteen.”

Mistake 133- I went to visit a friend for a weekend at a college 5 hours away. When I got there, he said his girlfriend was sick so he had to go take care of her the first night. He introduced me to a girl in his class and told me to hang out with her.

She took me to a party. Some guy she liked was going to be there. I don’t remember much except playing beer pong. I was in a city I did not know, at a school that was not mine, hanging with people I did not know, and I got trashed.

I had a blackout. Scary thinking I only started drinking a year before this and blackouts were starting to already become frequent. I “woke up” to realizing I was having sex with a guy. He was roommate with the guy whom was the reason we went to the party. We were on his top bunk bed. How the hell did I even climb up that ladder?

It is weird I remember his name because it is also my father’s name. And I remember he was short. I was so disgusted in the morning that I had sex with someone about a foot shorter than me.

The girl I went to the party with was there. She did not have sex with the guy she liked. She wanted a relationship and said she didn’t want to mess that chance. I was just the drunk stranger from out of town. No chance of relationships to mess up.

But I couldn’t help but feel she looked down on me. She didn’t know what she was getting into when she agreed to hang out with me. She wasn’t looking for a babysitting job. She walked me back to my friend’s dorm and left. I was glad I wasn’t a student there so I would not have to face her again. I spent the day hungover in my friend’s dorm watching movies.

Dude…where’s my car!

I moved out of my house last week because I was tired of my rude slumlord. I am going to be staying in rooms I find on AirBnB for the next two months. Yesterday was my first day.

I arrived at the house and noticed the neighborhood was not the greatest. And I was not able to park on the street in front of the house without a permit. The host of the house told me there is plenty of free parking around the corner. One side of the street said no parking on Monday. Other side said Tuesday. So I found a spot on the “no Tuesday” side since it was Monday morning. Even if the area did not look safe, it was daytime. I will be back in mid-afternoon to go to work for the night.

But it wasn’t there when I got back. I walked up and down the almost empty street. I stated to panic. I did not see my car! I called 911. The lady, in a rude tone, told me to call the non-emergency police number. I called that number. That is when I began to cry. “My car was stolen!”

This lady was not much nicer. Actually, she was pretty rude. She asked for my license plate or VIN number. When I said I didn’t know them, she said they couldn’t help. What? She can’t send a police officer out to help me? She told me to find out the VIN number and call her back. Then I remembered I took a photo of my license plate a month ago when I stayed at a hotel. I had it for filling out my hotel registration card. I asked her to please hold while I scroll my phone looking. She sighed and sounded like she didn’t believe I would find it. But I did.

I walked back around the corner to the house I was staying at to sit on the steps. I kept crying. The police station lady said “you need to calm down or I can’t help you.” I told her sorry but I am not from here and my car was stolen! She kept telling me to calm down. I said I was calmed. “You calmed down that quick?” Her sarcasm was not helpful.

She said “so you parked your car and you think it was stolen? ” YES! “Well it says here you had a parking violation.” What? I asked for what. “Oh I don’t know! Let’s see… says you parked in front of a driveway.”

I said in a surprised voice “No I did not.”
“Well YOU parked the car, right? Then YOU must have parked it in front of a driveway.”
I was now more mad at her than I was about my missing car. I know I was not in front of a driveway but maybe my car was slightly in front of one. Enough for it to be towed. I asked her how do I go about getting my car back. I swear she was smiling when she said “well you will have to wait until tomorrow. They close in 10 minutes.”

She proceeded to give me the address of the place I need to go to get a release form. Then I need to go to get my car. I did not bother to ask her how much the ticket will be. I had to pay $45 for a taxi to work. Then I will have to pay about the same to go get that release form. Not sure if the place where my car is close to the release form place. Tomorrow morning is going to suck.

But… I am happy it wasn’t stolen. I have too much stuff in there. And if I compare the cost of this to my DUIs, this is nothing. It sucks that stuff like this still happens in sobriety. I have had cars towed in the past from parking them illegally while drunk.

Maybe the rude lady assumed that was this case. “Hmpf she sleeps all day. Must have parked it drunk!”

I still think she needs some customer service training.

Mistake 132- I mentioned the other day about the first time I kissed my friend but ended up having sex with another guy that night. I hated not remembering sex with that other guy. About a month later, I apparently called him to tell him.

I was living about 300 miles away. I left him a voicemail. I do not remember calling nor the message. He actually called me the next afternoon. He asked if I was hungover. I was surprised and couldn’t figure how he knew I was drinking the previous night. “You left me the best message last night!”

Huh?

I left him a voicemail that was pretty pornographic. I told him how I wanted a “do over”. I said I wanted to have another night since I did not remember the night we had sex. I told him the things I wanted to do.

He had his friends listen to it. They all thought it was hilarious.

We never had the “do over”. We have remained aquaintances. He still likes to tease me about my voicemail I left him 10 years ago.

Online classes vs Blogging

I started my online classes. I regret already taking two. It is a lot of reading, online discussions, and writing papers. I have never done an online course before so this is a bit scary.  Maybe I should have started with one. Like starting sobriety. Don’t rush into it all at once.

But I also feel this is a nice introduction to going back to school in the fall 2015.  It was just a dumb idea to schedule a camping trip the first week of classes. It is only a 6 week semester so it is a lot of work (and double that for two classes) crammed into a month. I hope to keep up with my blog during this time.

At least I know I will stay sober. No time to drink nor think of drinking! I will be drunk on art history and religious studies until July!

Mistake 131- I was at a frat party. I had a crush on a guy there. I think he knew it. He was an asshole but I liked his pretty, blue eyes. And I was 19 and naive. My lack of self-esteem made the recipe worse.

I got drunk on cheap beers and Zima. I remember looking at him, smiling, and he said “nice shoes. Want to fuck?”

I giggled. I thought that was so funny. “Sure.”

We went out to his Ford Explorer. It was the one that used to get me excited when I saw it parked outside of the frat house. We had sex in the back of it. Afterwards, as we walked back to the house, he laughed. He said a homeless guy stood outside the window the whole time watching.

He ignored me the rest of the party.