Still counting days (137) and marvelling at the slow accumulation of time and life. Slow in a good way. Slow in a ‘savouring’ and worthwhile way.
At a dinner party last week I had comfortably declined the wine that was going round since I was driving. Later the hostess, a newish but congenial friend, said with almost pity in her voice ‘surely you can have a glass’ and I heard how, in the past, that phrase, that tone, would have been an reiteration of my thoughts. Again, I declined, but I did so with pleasure. I was happy. Participating in conversation fully; actually listening, not getting silly or loud; being present to enjoy the moment, the food, the company and not ‘enjoying’ it simply on the basis that it was a licence to drink.
And it came to me in a flash (we did indeed have thunder, lightning and a rainbow, but this was a personal flash) that I am happier sober than I ever was drinking and that whilst there are occasional pangs, there is really no attraction anymore. I know that what I have is precious and a gift and that I must nurture and protect it.
And then at the weekend I took my teens to a music festival and walked among some of the most drunk people I have ever seen and felt alarmed and horrified at what it did to them and their behaviour. Bestial and de-humanised. Vulnerable or aggressive. Reckless and foolish. Were they having more fun than I was? Well, life’s not a competition but I know that when I looked at them I was experiencing heartfelt gratitude at being sober me and not drunk them and later, trying to find a comfortable position for my aching bones on a tiny camp bed (camping and festivals are truly a young person’s game) I thanked whatever power it is in the universe that has brought me to day 130 plus and vowed that I am never, never going back to that dark place of self destruction.