Dry January (DJ) – Day 6.
Is this Menopause, or abstinence I ask myself?
I have never thought that I had a problem with drink but now I am not so sure. I wasn’t dependent on it, after all, I regularly take days off. However, I am definitely a habitual drinker. It goes with, stressful days at work, family events, happy times, sad times and all the other emotional reasons we use for eating or drinking too much. It’s a habit, a couple of glasses of vino collapse to help de-clutter the mind, or to celebrate.
Sometimes two glasses would turn into two bottles, depending on the partner in crime or the event. I have always had an addictive personality and I feel that alcohol, in my hands, could be a potential mine field. Whatever I do, I tend to do to excess, thank the Lord that I didn’t dabble with hard drugs; I would probably be pushing up Daisies now.
….. So I decided to attempt ‘Dry January’ with one concession, I always have a New Year Meal with my Brother and Sister-in-law and as it was pre-planned I had a few tipples. I regretted it after as I felt that, even though I had made the decision prior to DJ and had already decided I would imbibe, I felt as though I had cheated. Onward and upward…..
When I had gotten over the guilt trip, I carried on with DJ and I have to say, that I am not finding it at all difficult. The detoxification on the other hand, is a different thing as I am unsure what the symptoms are, Menopause, or Alcohol Detox as they are very similar.
Things to remember, when we attempt DJ.
Firstly, there is the whole ritual that we go through when we want to partake of a few, well-earned Vino Collapso. We plan (sub-consciously) to take part in this ritual, planning the day around going to the Super-Market, under the pretence of buying Bread and Milk and then we find ourselves in the dreaded ‘Alcohol Aisle’. Supermarkets always place this aisle near the end of all the aisles, as by then we are sufficiently relaxed to browse.
We scan…..first for the bargains (I always look for half price). Then we look for posh labels we can afford, the secret is to look as though you know your wines and that you are a regular connoisseur of all things made from Grapes with a hint of Melon and Courgette.
You eye up the bottles, take one off the shelf, caress the neck….. “Oh how I have missed you since last night” you think as you drool……….
I try to be sensible; I look for Wines under 12% Volume as they won’t give me a headache (really?). I find a nice Chilean Merlot 11.5% Volume and say under my breath “that can’t do me any harm” ….. So I buy two bottles …… Well, it is cheap! I do not have a drink problem!
We get to checkout and the girl casts you a sly glance amidst the beeps… you shuffle your feet and explain, “I have to buy it when it’s this cheap, you never know who may call in for a drink, especially over Christmas”. All the while you know she is thinking, “She’s been in here every day for a fortnight and bought alcohol”
When you get home, you nonchalantly prepare the dinner, eat the dinner and wait patiently for 8 o clock, as if it is the hour when it doesn’t matter how much you drink as it is civilised to drink after 8 … “Oh – and her down the road is on the booze at 6pm every day, how common is she… bloody old soak!”
Come on… own up how many of you talk about other people’s drinking habits, when yours are probably worse but because you have a nice car and can afford a half price bottle of Barolo, its ok….. “Not like her and her 2 Litres of cheap White Cider”….. Oh, I can hear myself now and if you listen to yourselves hard enough you will probably hear the same. We are somewhat hypocritical at times, I’m sure you’ll agree.
Back to the Symptoms….
Up to now the last six days have brought feelings of satisfaction that I have abstained for almost a week. Feelings of dread, in that I have now committed to go for it, even though I won’t be able to have a drink with my Indian the next time I go out and nervousness that I may fail and that is unthinkable, after all its 31 days! How hard can it be?
Similarities to Menopause include, sweating, itching, shivering, amnesia, peeing like a Racehorse, insomnia and opening your mouth to speak only to have completely lost the words.
If you look up the symptoms for Menopause and/or Alcohol Detoxification they are almost identical, so now I have no idea whether I am an Alcoholic Granny with a penchant for Barolo, or a Menopausal Granny with about 5 more years of hormonal hell left to suffer.
Either way, I am determined to be dry for the rest of January, even if it means buying a large stash of Tena Lady and sticking them over the open ends of my wine bottles.
Happy New Year …. Granny