Today marks 3 weeks and 1 day sober. I waited to write my first post until after I safely passed the 2 week mark. My story isn’t all that exciting or unique. I was drinking a couple glasses of wine (give or take) nightly. A little more on the weekends. One day I realized that wine was driving a lot of my decisions: what I did after work, what I did on the weekends, how I spent my downtime and how I managed stress. I started to feel boxed in by it. There’s a was a lot more I wanted to do and try. Wine didn’t fit into that equation. This has been a long, drawn out process. I’ve gone from moderate to heavy drinking to sober. Then moderate to light drinking to sober. Now light drinking to sober. A two year weaning process, really.
Last weekend I went to my first Bunko game. If you’ve never played Bunko, it’s a dice game. Each table has 4 players and every 5-10 minutes you’re changing the table you’re seated at. You more or less spend the whole night talking to different people depending on the table you’re playing at. What I wasn’t told about this game is that it’s not really about the game at all. It’s about the booze, food and socialization. 24 women, all between the age of 40-60, were at this particular game night. And 99% of them were drinking HEAVILY. Guess who the 1% was? Yours truly! These ladies were making and drinking mudslides like they were seniors in high school. A stark contrast to my Fresca. And let me tell you. It was not lost on these ladies that the new girl didn’t have a milky drink in hand. Oh no! It came to head when one of the ladies announced she put Fireball in her mudslide. The ohhs and aaahs were convincing as they passed around this concoction and took sips. “You have to try this” pass, “I need to add this to my drink!” pass, “Why didn’t I think to do this earlier?” pass, “Kim you HAVE to try this”. I tried to keep up the pace of the taste and pass and figured I’d smell it, give a few words of encouragement, and pass it along. “Oooh! Amazing!” I said as I tried to pass it. “Try it!” someone yelled. I declined with a shake of my head and silence fell over the ladies. “No, you have to try it’. I considered it for a second. I mean, would it be that bad if I tried it? A sip? What’s one sip right? Well, one sip is what turns into two and you know how that ends. And even if it doesn’t, what about the principle of the matter? No means no right? I started to feel a little miffed as the chatters got LOUD. “JUST DRINK IT!!!!” They started leaning in and pounding their fists on the table as they insisted I drink it. “JUST DRINK THE DAMN THING!!” ….. “I DONT WANT TO!!!!” I yelled back. There’s a bell that rings signaling the game has once again started and I was literally saved by the bell!! As it chimed through the house, everyone found their places for the game and went back to rolling dice.
Suffice to say, I’m not sure I’ll be invited to another bunko game. Which is too bad because beside the moment of intense pressure, I really enjoyed it. I got to act as crazy and zany as these ladies but did it totally sober. I was in control of myself, laughing and having a great time. I’ve always avoided social drinking situations when I’ve been sober because I hated the idea of being pressured. But I dunno. I really liked being the sober gal in the room. And who knows, maybe I was able to show some women on the fence about trying sobriety that it can be done. You don’t have to hide in closet. You can still get out there and live your life. You especially can try new things.