I’ve been doing a lot of thinking about drinking and my own desire for a nightly glass of chardonnay or a hand crafted cocktail. This desire didn’t come on strong for me until a few years ago which is surprising, because I grew up with it all around me.
You see, I grew up in a small town with two loving parents.
My house was warm and safe and often on the weekends a place where my parent's friends, other hardworking church-going people, would gather for classic dinner parties. These events were full of copious cocktails, fancy food and occasionally a rousing game of twister or poker, often partying well past midnight.
It would be one thing if the drinking was limited to these parties, but, it wasn’t, drinking was a nightly affair.
Until recently, I never thought twice about the fact that every day at 5:00pm my Dad would walk in the door and after washing his hands, he would go directly to the cabinet where the good glasses were kept, pull out a bottle of gin or Jack and make himself and my mom a drink. He would then go upstairs, shower, come back down and refresh both drinks again. Every single night.
Then, every morning, without fail, they would rise at 5:00 am to do it all again.
You see, to me, drinking isn’t a problem unless it gives you negative results. Like…
Regret for something you said while you were drinking.
Lack of productivity.
Unproductive morning after.
Difficulty getting an early morning work out in.
If my parents had negative results I was never aware of it.
But, now, I kinda wonder why they drank so much.
Was it because without it they couldn’t deal with how they felt living that small town life?
Were they bored?
Were they drinking to numb themselves from their own reality or, was it just a grown-up habit? I’ll never know.
These thoughts have got me thinking about my own desire for a glass of Chardonnay and here’s what I’m doing to make sure my love of cocktails is a “healthy” one.
I am no longer spontaneously drinking wine or cocktails every night. I plan ahead when I will drink each week and I look forward to it.
I notice urges when I haven’t planned for a cocktail and write down what I’m thinking to see if there is something I'm trying to escape from.
I challenge myself (who doesn't love a good challenge?) by purposefully going out with friends when I haven’t planned to have a cocktail and honor my plan. I go to networking events and drink water and I practice abstaining for days at a time just to prove to myself that I am in control of my own desire.
I don’t want to ever use food or alcohol to stuff down my feelings and avoid my life. I’ve got so much I want to do. xox