Sometime in September I decided I had been drinking too much and it was time for a breather. I opted into Sober October mostly because it rhymed (WHAT?) and did not give it thorough thought. Thanksgiving, Halloween, the on-set of winter…what was I thinking!?
But I had my mind set and went for it anyways. Lucky for me, my guy opted to do it with me and so I felt fortified to make it happen!
The whole trajectory of the month was a surprise. I expected that it would start easy and get tougher as the month went on. In fact, the opposite was true and by the end I found myself wondering how much I cared to even allow alcohol back into my life. But more on that when we get there.
Here are the Facebook posts I shared near daily that recounted the most intense feelings or observations from that day for those who missed it (or aren’t like, my friends in real life). I would bet that were you to take on Sober October – or any sober month – you might find a similar path (unless you drink WAY less than me in which case I don’t even know why you’d opt for a month without…but you do you).
Anyways, the posts:
Sober October Day 1: Had a giant slurpee to survive
Sober October Day 2: Butternut squash soup, while warming, is not as appeasing as red wine, friends
Sober October Day 3: Reallocated booze money to getting my hair done. Nice
Sober October Day 4: Exhausted. Life or like, withdrawals? Maybe wine IS my life force…
Sober October Day 5: Marked improvement in skin situation. Cyclical? Happenstance? Or booze related? Time will tell, friends, time will tell…
Sober October Day 6: Pretty chill, actually. So. Yay!
Sober October Day 7: Friendsgiving Edition: Everyone is drunk. I am not. The end.
Sober October Day 8: A lazy day WITHOUT a hangover is surprisingly much more satisfying. Who knew!?
(Note: This lazy day came by accident – it was supposed to be three days of Thanksgiving dinners, all no booze, but the host on this particular day was quite sick and had to cancel last minute. That did not stop me from eating excessive amounts of pie though…)
Sober October Day 9: Friendsgiving, Second Edition: Maya takes her kids to the park 😉 A time was had. Alcohol deemed wholly unnecessary. (For now at least)
Sober October Days 10 & 11: Pumpkin pie and tea before bed. Because apparently not drinking brings out the granny in me.
Sober October Day 12: Mama needs a drink
Sober October Day 13: If you go to a hockey game and don’t drink a beer, are you even still Canadian?
Sober October Day 14 (halfway):
Sober October Day 15: I thought I’d feel less sluggish by now. Blame it on the weather?
Sober October Day 16: I just replace the wine with sweets so…guess weight loss *won’t* be one of the nice side effects of this challenge…
Sober October Days 17 & 18: Life holds little meaning. Words are empty. Time is so slow.
Sober October Days 19 & 20: I be chillin’
(Note: There were some serious mood swings a-happening, in case that isn’t apparent!)
Sober October Day 21: Three weeks down! We’ll drink (de-alcoholized champagne) to that!
Sober October Days 22-24: The “feeling good” started to kick in!
Sober October Day 25: Fancy date night calls for one glass of wine and one fancy cocktail at a speakeasy. Thoughts: Maybe I really don’t care that much if I drink (much) moving forward…
Sober October Days 26 & 27: Resisting the urge to drink out of habit; opted to make plans that included “tea or hot chocolate afterwards” where “a drink” would have been the norm prior to this challenge. #keeptheballrolling
Sober October Day 28 (Halloween Festivities): DONE 🥂👹
Sober October Final Thoughts: (while mildly hungover and sleep deprived): Guys, I might not be that into drinking anymore.
Would I recommend a sober month, no booze, not even a sip?
Hell yes I would! The month gave me such an interesting opportunity to evaluate how I held my friendships; where the value in certain relationships lie; what a snooze I had become spending so much time relying on wine instead of hobbies or actual activities as things to do with friends and talk about; gave me time to reflect on my longer term goals; and forced me to do something that felt quite uncomfortable – most especially in social situations with new people.
And that’s the whole point of a challenge, right? To shake things up!
I’m happy to be back to social drinking but I love that I’ve turned to flavoured teas to get me through the weeknights now.
Will you take on the challenge?