I am lustful.
Not when I’m drunk (well, not always)—what I mean is I have a lust for life. I love life. And one thing I love to do in life is…drink.
That’s right. I love to have a drink. An alcoholic drink.
Drinky, dinky, drinky do doo!
“But why would someone who loves drinking choose to stop for a year?” I hear you wonder (ESP being one of the unsung benefits of sobriety).
Well, it’s because I love to drink I decided to take a year off drinking. And not only would I not get drunk for a year, I wouldn’t even take a sip. You see I didn’t want to let da’ drink take over to da’ point where and when (hopefully never) I could no longer enjoy alcohol in moderation.
And that was in danger of happening.
When I began my YOLS I was lucky to have one or, at the most, two nights in seven off booze.
And that had to change. Because maybe I was missing out on something? Maybe not drinking alcohol for a year would give me more than a break from the odd (very odd?) regrettable drunken outburst or pig-out.
The way I figured it life is too short to stumble through unconsciously, throwing each foot out in a mindless march towards the grave, without ever venturing off the well worn track of habitual nightly intoxication to dance your own dance in the great garden of varied sublime sober experience.
For too long I had gone with the flow (a flow which began somewhere around the age of fifteen and my First Time Pissed) but now I’ve re-chanelled my kinetic energy and am in a new flow. A flow that is not controlled by a hungover mind, a flow that is inspired by a simple, yet profound change. I’ve broken a habit of drinking alcohol almost every night simply by deciding not to.
I woke up one day and decided not to drink for the next 365. And the nights too.
But it wasn’t just my curiosity about what life would like be like if I didn’t drink alcohol at all—how would abstinence affect my social, work and family life—I wanted a break from wondering if after having a few too many I’d said or done something a bit angrier or more arrogant than I otherwise would have?
Maybe I wasn’t always a happy drunk?
And if it’s true what Rumi says in one of his poems, that…
“The source of your arrogance and anger is your lust
And the rootedness of that is in your habits.”
…then maybe I am not only breaking a habit bad for my health—by not drinking for a year, but I’m also breaking a habit I wasn’t even aware I had: a habit of arrogance and anger.
But maybe even less now I’ve been sober for 217 days?
And whether I was a happy, angry, lustful or know-it-all drunk—or a combination of all those and more—I haven’t had any excuse for anything I’ve done, said or thought in all that time. Except for being human. And maybe that’s all I need now?
Today is Day 218 of my YOLS (Year Of Living Sober).
Little Booze Joke
A sex maniac walks into a busy bar and the bartender says, “What would you like?” and the sex maniac looks around the bar and says “Her. Her. Her. Her. Him. Her. Her. Them. Her. Her. Her. That. Her. Her. You?”
Badda bing a-ding-a-ling boom boom!
How about you? Are you a happy drunk or a know-it-all? Does alcohol make you a bit quick to anger sometimes? Are these questions too confronting to even consider? Do share…