Following my emotional episodes this week, several people have compared my sobriety to an onion, peeling away the external layers to reveal forgotten buried layers beneath. Isn’t it ironic that onions also make you cry?!
If you’d told me a year ago, when I was chucking copious amounts of anything down my neck, that in a years time, I would be booking to go to a Gong Bath or meeting random strangers for coffee or writing about sobriety being an onion, I thought you were insane. But here I am.
I guess it’s hard to anticipate how you’re going to feel on any journey you haven’t been on before but the way I’ve felt this week came as a bit of a surprise. I’ve battled to get my 3 stone weight loss certificate for at least 3 months now but upon obtaining it, I just felt a bit flat. I cried watching people do a marathon. I cried when I saw my friends at the marathon. I cried when I saw my friend doing a beauty treatment for me. I cried at 5.30am listening to Russell Brand for f**ks sake.
I just don’t feel how I thought I would feel this close to the finish line.
The problem with putting down a drink for the last time is that you’re not just putting down a drink for the last time. You’re changing everything. You’re changing relationships, interests, weekends, week nights, food choices, bedtimes, get up times. You’re changing your world. And you’re also cutting off your escape route.
This week it has hit me that I will never be able to escape again. This is it. I am me and this is it forever. Deal with it. No more ‘f**k it, let’s get wasted’ moments. EVER. No more opportunities to just forget it all, for even the smallest moment in time. I have to deal with EVERYTHING whether I want to or not. And that is ENORMOUS.
As I approach the completion of my first year of sobriety & what I thought was the end of my journey, I realise that, in some ways, this is just the beginning. The real challenge of peeling away layer by smelly layer of my sobriety onion and dealing with what lies beneath (without an escape route) could potentially be more difficult than dealing with abstaining from alcohol itself. Wish me luck!