150 days today!
I told the father of my son that I was going to write a post that listed 150 ways that my life has improved in that time and his response was: “Don’t be crazy, nobody’s going to want to read that. Just make it one for each week.”
I hate to say it, but he has a point.
So here goes:
21 ways my life has improved since beginning my alcohol free life:
- My bank statements no longer read like the Yellow Pages of the West End.
- I now no longer singlehandedly pay the salaries of 1.5 Über drivers (see number 1).
- I make it to appointments on time. Well, perhaps not all the time, but let’s say 50% of the time. Or perhaps 33%. Anyway, I make it to appointments on time more than I did before. Which was never.
- I rarely watch TV. This is both a positive and a negative as oftentimes I stand there looking like a Neanderthal who’s just appeared from under a rock when people speak about the latest breakthrough show. I fit in around two hours a week, and I make those count. And this does not include watching episode three of Friends series two for the sixteenth time.
- I used to devour celebrity magazines. I haven’t opened one since my sobriety date. I didn’t think I could live without intimate knowledge of Jordan’s sixth boob job, or go to bed without knowing what the latest doomed for failure celebrity couple has named their child. Turns out I survive just fine.
- I take my boy swimming as promised. This is a big one for obvious reasons. And there are huge bonuses to making it there. Afterwards he takes a nap for hours. Which, as any mother will know, is the Universe’s way of thanking us for a job well done.
- I’ve lost a stone. A STONE! You hear that? Just from not drinking? A little bit from not eating sugar too, but I was never a huge sugar fiend. When it came to dessert time it was never about ‘which one of these lovely cakes shall I pick?’ In stead it was ‘Another bottle of the Pinot Grigio, please’. It’s a little known fact that AF life is possibly the best diet out there, but the question is how many books would ‘Drop as many dress sizes as you like by dropping the vino’ sell. Hmmm. Must put that in my back pocket. Need to work on the title.
- I seldom come home to find more than one ‘We came to give you a package but you weren’t home’ card from The Post Office. Once I turned up at the post office with three of the cards wondering what three things I was picking up. I then stood there, glad that I’d had the foresight to bring a bag, whilst the attendant passed me no fewer than 23 packages. TWENTY-THREE PACKAGES. It had been a busy night watching The Good Place with the whole world’s shopping opportunities conveniently balanced on my lap in the form of my laptop.
- On account of the above I have now banished internet shopping altogether. I even told the father of my son to block me from sharing his Amazon Prime account with mind blowing consequences. I must have saved hundreds in the past couple of months. Having to get off my (now tinier) butt to go buy stuff from the High Street means I think long and hard about whether I actually need it. And then there’s the added bonus of actually supporting our high streets. And we all know they need supporting, before each and every one becomes an oasis of betting shops and pound stores. Oh, and estate agents.
- Today my ‘I am Sober’ app announces that I have saved £2,250 since going AF. For further savings see numbers 8 and 9 above.
- The same app tells me I’ve saved 900 hours in this time. How has the time been calculated? It’s a tricky one to estimate, but say I spent six hours on drinking of a night several times a week, then at least six hours would be ruined the day after because of it. So on an average of six hours a day that’s 37 days that I’ve saved for ‘stuff’. You can cross a lot off your to do list in 37 days.
- After these 150 days I can finally consider my house virtually clutter free (see number 11). In another 50 days I can ask Marie Kondo around for supper and invite her to root around my drawers (now now) with my head held high.
- As a consequence of number 12, my mind is slowly becoming a less cluttered place. I’m starting to think my boss had a point when he tried to get me to tidy the towers of paperwork off my desk. Darn.
- I no longer have to wish I’d downloaded an app that made me answer trivia/complete a puzzle/know my last name before being able to send a text. Read in to this what you will (and you will probably be right).
- I now prefer leafing through a book to swiping left (and occasionally right) on my phone. Anybody for whom this reference is gobbledygook is likely to be cozily coupled up.
- I now know that it is ok to be by myself. And in fact I revel in it (see number 15). This is quite the whopper after 26 years of back to back relationships (which weirdly coincides with the number of years I was drinking for).
- My body seems to have regained a level of immunity unheard of in the past decade or two, as I have since my sobriety date managed to avoid the monthly cornflake lip I had become so accustomed and which thwarted many a date (which, in itself, was not necessarily a bad thing).
- I have discovered the meaning of self-care. For it used to mean ‘open bottle, drink bottle, repeat’. Now it means: gym, sauna, jacuzzi, read, bath, run, massage, eat well, sleep well, be well.
- I used to wonder what kind of moron you had to be to run in pouring rain at 6am. Now I am one of those morons (see number 18).
- I haven’t broken or lost a mobile phone/tooth/set of keys/my mind since going AF.
- I remember every day as vividly as this moment, here, right now. And that counts for a lot when I have a four year old with whom every day is a precious gift.
And on that rather serious note, I thank you for popping in again. I know I owe you a post about the Random Acts of Kindness day. I have written most of it, but, as chance would have it, I have been busy performing my own random act of kindness through packing up my son’s and his father’s house ahead of their move to their new house this Friday, a house which I found for them. There’s no denying it: I am not only feeling strangely warm inside for sharing the goodness, but also pleasantly smug.
Big AF hugs.