Seventy-two hours without a drink in my hand and thoughts are no longer smothered by pressure to reach for a glass, but instead eagerly hovering over the keys with clarity and ambition, reaching for ways to display their excitement through words.
I see expression in myself, my children, and my world that I never knew was there. It’s like I’ve been living with the lights out and ears muffed, stumbling and bumping into things, never quite sure of which direction to take. After making the conscious choice to drink less, the energy around me is palpable and bright.
My lungs are expanding with greater capacity and the crispness of air refreshes my mind, bringing focus to my little space in the universe.
But it’s the moments between each breath, where a feathery touch or tinkling laugh make me realize that staying present will continue to benefit me in ways I never knew were possible with a drink in my hand. These moments were ones the bottle convinced me to ignore most, draining vibrancy from my life.
Though these feelings prove that I am worthy of sobriety, my head continues to persuade me that I am missing out on good times without a glass of my favorite red. It’s a gentle tug pulling me backwards.
I’m hesitant to say that I am free, because I know I’m not. The days ahead of me will be long and filled with uniquely challenging pressures that I haven’t yet prepared myself for. But I will figure them out one by one.
Tonight, I’ll have a glass of wine because it’s the weekend and because I’m flawed. Maybe tomorrow night I’ll have steamy chamomile tea with a teaspoon of honey instead.
And for now, I stand here: three days sober, seeing the clear skies ahead.
Photo courtesy of Annie Spratt/Unsplash