Week-by-Week: What Happens When You Quit Drinking Alcohol For 30 Days

early sobriety what to expect

On December 19, 2016, I promised myself that I was finished playing around. No more relapses. No more bi monthly binge. I was going to take my sobriety seriously and go all in. The thirty days that followed were a roller coaster, one that I am still on, but filled with lessons and insights I will take to help me get through the next thirty.

Sobriety, as with most things, is uniquely personal. I don’t purport to speak for the sober community or to suggest that my experience is normal. I only hope that my insights may prove helpful to someone else who reads this blog, like I’ve done with so many other writers, and says “me too.”


Drowning in Alcohol Culture

alcohol culture and sobriety

Alcohol is everywhere. It permeates our culture. It’s in advertisements, movies, literature, our yoga classes (which still baffles me). Before I started getting serious about sobriety, I hadn’t really noticed because it was so ingrained into my everyday life. Of course we can find it in all the old familiar places: bars, clubs, restaurants. But it doesn’t end there. We’ve got book clubs with wine. Baby showers with wine. Painting classes with wine. Concerts in the park. With wine. We are constantly being inundated with the idea that we need alcohol to have fun, socialize, kick back, or function successfully.


Sobriety, Surrender, and a New Year

sobriety in the new year

I did it! I’ve officially made it through the holidays without drinking. It was not easy and I had doubts about whether I would make it through New Year’s. There were days when I wanted to crawl out of my skin. I was bored. I felt like I was missing all the action. I wanted to be out there, in the bars, partaking in the big brunches, but also to go nowhere and do nothing at all – to enjoy drinks on my balcony and the cool weather. The pull to give in just one more time before 2016 ended nagged at me. I was constantly engaging in an internal negotiation between the parts of me that knew better and those that don’t. Because I’d already slipped up a handful of times since the decision to quit in June, what could it hurt to have one last alcohol fueled night on the town before the new year? I planned the whole hypothetical evening out in my head. I romanticized it like it was going to be some epic adventure that I’d remember forever and tell my grandchildren about: “The Last Night I Ever Drank!” I indulged this ridiculous fantasy a dozen times, even though I knew it would likely just be my husband and I binge drinking and chain smoking while scrolling through our Facebook pages for a few hours. Nothing grand or sexy about it.