Exulting in That Feeling

By Kate M.

Liz wrote:  I have just read two emails in a row that mentioned the exhilaration of the early days of not drinking. That’s where I am now, and am very disappointed that it will wear off.  Kind of like a new love, I guess….  The exhilaration is what’s keeping me in there fighting right now.

Actually a lot of it’s come back now.  It never wore off as such, I just forgot what it was that was producing it every day at first. It didn’t come from nowhere, that feeling — it wasn’t random. It was there every day at the start because I had clearly in my mind the difference between my daily life as a nondrinker and my daily life as a drinker — I couldn’t forget that, it was at the front of my mind back then.

I guess I’ve just let thinking about the difference slide, and taken it all for granted a bit… as I said in my second mail, investing a bit of time in actively remembering why I stopped and the many downsides of drinking have made a world of difference. I’ve caught myself once again walking round my flat thinking “Isn’t this great!! I’m walking round feeling totally well and clearheaded and sober!!” and exulting in that feeling.

It’s important for me to remember what produces that feeling of exhilaration. I find right now that every word I wrote down about how I felt ten or eleven months ago when I stopped is invaluable in reminding me of things that have got a bit vague and blurred with time, even though a bit of hard thinking also brings them back.

Posted April 26, 1999