I never really played out how not drinking would effect my friendships. Probably because I never really played out not drinking. Tonight I got together with a girlfriend for an early bite to eat. We used to call it ‘happy hour.’ Now I’m renaming it ‘happier hour,’ because I am definitely happier afterwards, having not imbibed.
This girlfriend and I used to get together once a week and have dinner and drinks. We both enjoyed wine and would laugh and chat for several hours. Now the cadence has shifted. We got together last week and I was peppy from lack of toxins. She had just one glass of wine and I was happy with my new favorite drink, cranberry and sparkling water with lime. The evening was ok, but not the same as our past girl’s nights.
This week she had h2o and I had my cranberry water. The meal was super short, we chatted about what we did last weekend, etc. I talked a bit about not drinking and how my mind feels non-existent and sleep is hard to come by. My girlfriend asked how long I was going to stay on the wagon? I didn’t know how to respond so I just said, ‘for the foreseeable future.’ When we left the restaurant she mentioned that she is just not as fun when she is not drinking. She is a sweet and kind friend so I know that she was not trying to say that I was not as fun too, but my mind started swirling.
“Maybe I’m not going to be as much fun?”
“Maybe I won’t be able to have as much fun?”
“Maybe nothing will ever be fun again.”
Once I got home opened my computer and started to share these thoughts. I realize that the best times in my life are times that I can remember vividly, and that means times without alcohol. In my two weeks drinking healthy beverages I have already had some great laughs with other friends and lots of super fun sober moments. I am going to ride the sleepless nights and brain fogged days out and see how things play out. I have already spent years drinking so I know how that plays out, and it was not all bad or good or dramatic, but it had gotten old. My body started to feel taxed, my mind started to feel forgetful and my psyche started to feel taxed.
I don’t know how my friendships will change, but can see that they probably will. And it amazes me that a liquid can make such profound difference in my life choices both past and present. Hugs 🙂