“Do You Miss Drinking?”

“So you don’t drink at all?”

“Nope.”

I can see the light bulb turn on for her; she realizes that I’m an alcoholic without me saying the words.

“Do you miss drinking?”

I pause and smile. I’m honest and say “yeah, I do.”

“How long?”

“Not long… 13 months.”

“Cheers to sobriety.” She clinks her beer against my club soda.

My brain is broken. That’s the only answer for why I would ever miss it. But I did that night. I was in a bar waiting for my husband’s band to take the stage. I was feeling self-conscious and lonely. For a moment, I missed alcohol. I wondered how a shot of tequila would feel after abstaining for 13 months. I thought about how easy it would be to walk up to the bar and order a vodka & soda, instead of plain club soda. No one would even know.

My brain is broken, which is why I entertained these thoughts instead of immediately remembering how physical ill I was when I drank. I did eventually remember the reality of my alcoholism, but didn’t care. In the moment, the good things in life didn’t outweigh the booze. In the moment, I missed drinking.

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8 thoughts on ““Do You Miss Drinking?”

  1. I can only speak for me, but my brain tells me I miss it too. My heart knows better. Drinking sucked, that’s why I HAD to quit. It was never as good as I thought it would be. EVER. You’ll find your way. Know you are loved. Lisa

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  2. I don’t think your brain is broken! I think you’re doing quite damn well, thank you very much! Your brain is incredibly plastic, and, it’s taking time to learn the new routine–no to those well-worn rewards, yes to NEW rewards, like, not feeling like ass the next day. “I wondered how a shot of tequila would feel after abstaining for 13 months.” I wonder that, too, but mostly, I’m afraid I will feel horrible. The last time I drank a little after months of sobriety (a handful of times, actually), I always felt the same: not buzzed, more confused, and anxious. I think THAT is where our brains might be “broken” in the sense that even a little alcohol now is too much for our circuits to handle. Huge hugs–thank you for reminding me that I am not the only one who still “misses” drinking! 🙂

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  3. I had a moment like this a couple of weeks ago but you know what? I quickly realized that it wasn’t the alcohol I was missing, it was what I associated with it at that moment: the peer association – being at a bar with others who were drinking; feeling left out – the only one not drinking; the old habit. I chose to ignore the feeling, as did you. Bravo! Good for you.

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  4. it scares me that my brain is also broken, and I do not have those conversations with myself yet.. it is as if my brain shuts off and I just do… hang in there you are doing wonderful..

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  5. Its okay to miss drinking. I think we all do from time to time. But its admirable that even in that moment of nostalgia, you were able to remain sober. THAT is what’s truly beautiful about recovery.

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  6. I am at 4 1/2 months…this weekend, drinking crossed my mind when I woke with a mild scratch in my throat…whiskey hit my brain as the proper medicine.. Then on the way to cub scout campout for the weekend met another dad with his kids and my 8 year old son for a burger. They got their first and sat at the bar………I just kept looking at the beers the regulars were drinking and thinking one would be great.

    The mental obsession of this despite all my past bad experiences with booze is quite remarkable! A daily reprieve I guess is all I have!

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    • So true about the mental obsession. It’s so ingrained in us that it’s the first thing to pop into the mind. It’s only after a couple of beats that the rational part of our brain kicks in and says: “whoa, easy fella…”

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