I’m not exactly sure when I took my actual last drink, but it was in the latter part of 2014. I just stopped. I don’t think anything really motivated me stop it was just something I did. Well, that’s a lie. I did have a good reason. Headaches that would not stop. Stomach pains from hell. For New Years I decided that I would take my last drink that night when the clock struck 12AM and then I would officially quit drinking for at least the first 6 months of 2015.
I went down to Austin to celebrate New Years with my #BFF and made plans to have a blast with her. Well, the universe had other plans for me. I became insanely sick. I mean I had NEVER been that sick in my life. I could hardly eat, stand, or speak. The coughing would not stop. I broke out in the worst way. I was so sick that I was too scared to be around my niece and nephews who are toddlers because I was concerned that I had the flu.
On New Years Eve I headed over to one of those drop in clinics to see what was going on. I didn’t have the flu or strep. Just a HORRIBLE HORRIBLE HOR-RI-BLE case of allergies. I’m not someone who gets allergies, but the doctor informed me even the best of us are getting really bad allergies because the pollen and mold count were at a record high. On New Years Eve it was three times it’s normal high for that time of the year.
Since I was so sick I couldn't drink with the bestie and some of my friends. However, that didn’t make the night terrible. I mean I felt terrible, but I still had a fun time. I didn’t need a glass of champagne to have a blast that night.
Let me tell you, life is so much different when you’re on the sober side of the drunk messes. The universe needed me to stop drinking for some reason and it did a force shut down on me that day. In all honestly it was probably the best thing that could have happened to me.
3 REASONS I GAVE UP DRINKING
Family History of Alcoholism
The struggle is real y’all. I have and had family members who were addicted to the bottle. That addiction is not an easy thing. Giving up drinking is really hard. Before I really understood alcoholism I thought i was just a mind over matter thing. I felt like people who couldn’t give up the bottle were weak and making up excuses. That couldn’t be further from the truth. Alcoholism is a disease. What people don’t understand is that a TRUE alcoholic cannot survive without drinking.
Their bodies have been so programmed to drink that if they go a series of days where they do not drink then their body will begin attacking itself and bring on an alcoholic seizure. When a body is that badly beaten up it needs to be professionally assisted with detoxing. One of the most dangerous things for an alcoholic to do it detox in his or her own. It’s not the mind that’s addicted to the alcohol, it’s the body. The liver is the organ that has become addicted to the alcohol. The liver can become so addicted to the alcohol that it doesn't know how to survive without it. When it does not get the alcohol it then sends a message to brain that it needs its alcohol. When the liver does not get the alcohol it will then begin attacking the body and this is what sends people into an alcoholic seizure.
It is important for people who are addicted to alcohol but want to quit to go to a rehab center to properly detox from alcohol. Seeing family live through this and having family die from this is so hard. It never stops getting hard. After my personal family experience of this I haven’t looked at alcohol the same.
Well, I know I went into a long detailed paragraph about why alcohol is bad, but for my story it was messing with my personal health. Most specifically I felt like my brain was being clogged. Everything felt foggy and hazing when I was thinking. I couldn’t concentrate on shit. However the worst where the headaches. They would last for days. They would be so painful They would hurt so much that I began to get scared. While I could still drink like a sailor my bounce back was not the same. Even when began drinking wine the recovery time was not the same. The stark truth is I had to quit.
Affecting My Goals
Due to the headaches and the recovery time needed the drinking was affecting my motivation, goals, and work. When I would work my 9-5 I would work much slower because the headaches were that intense. When I was working on photography stuff I couldn’t be as creative because my entire head felt hazy. I would find myself sleeping in or missing appointments. I was not being present in my life. In order to do the job right you HAVE to be physically and mentally there. If I am going to be a great employee or a world famous photographer then I need to be 100% present. It’s not like i’m the only one working towards goals like these. There are a ton of amazing photographers who will get the job that I can’t get done due to my sucky recovery time. In order to be successful I needed to give up the things dragging me down.
HOW DO I FEEL SINCE GIVING UP DRINKING?
Amazing. I feel so amazing. I feel present. I am so much happier in life. I feel more effective at work and with my photography business. I don’t have these crazy ass headaches anymore. and most importantly I feel healthy. My skin looks AH-MAZING. I now get up at 6AM and start working on my business and can stay up until 1AM. Now that I am getting more into exercise I know that drinking won’t be counter productive to my body goals.
WAS IT HARD TO QUIT DRINKING?
No. It wasn't hard to quit drinking. It wasn’t hard for me because I am not an alcoholic. While I may be genetically pre-exposed to alcoholism I am not an alcoholic. I simple do not have a desire to drink. That’s why I am able to be around alcohol with without the desire to drink. I can party with people who do drink. In fact I still have mad bottles of wine and alcohol in my house (because it just makes my bar cart look classy), but it wasn’t hard for me.
2 THINGS IS DID TO MAKE QUITTING AN EASIER PROCESS
Told my Friends Straight Out that I had Quit Drinking
It was a love it or leave it approach. I made it clear that me not drinking wasn’t going to change who I was. In fact it was going to make me better. I let them know they shouldn’t feel weird about drinking around me. I just did not want to be pressured into drinking with them.
Distanced Myself from People who Respect It
I distanced myself from people who could not understand why I had quit drinking. I feel as though that when I tell people that I am not drinking that I should not be challenged on this type of change. If I tell someone that I quit drinking and they still took the time to buy a shot of tequila it was time to bounce and distance myself until I could speak to them in a sober state.
You don’t need to drink to have a good time. I still dance at the bars. I still get loud. I still love to have fun, but it has to do with the atmosphere of the people I’m around. I have a tribe of people that I can be around when they drink because I don’t have the pressure of drinking. Even when they are we all benefit because guess who the designated driver is? LOL
IT'S BEEN 6 MONTHS WILL YOU EVERY DRINK AGAIN?
Now lets not get it twisted. I will still offer champagne and wine for my boudoir sessions. I will still happily take part in Dallas brunch and Sunday Fundays. You just won’t see Me drinking. Will I ever drink again? Probably. but it won’t be the casual drinking as it once was. It will be for major goals achieved or for life changing events.
WHAT ABOUT THE COCKTAIL RECIPES?!
Yes, I will still have drinking recipes on the blog. I will just have my friends finishing them off! LOL!
In the comments below if you have given up drinking how did you let your family and friends know?