Believe me, it has crossed my mind, during my sobriety journey, and is that one question I ask myself potentially too often, “Was I really THAT bad?” Did I really need to go all the way out and quit drinking for good? The answer is yes. My husband and I met just after I hit 1 year sober. Trust me, meeting the man of my dreams was the last thing I was prepared for. I had just learned how to love myself and all those flaws that I grew to hate and with no notice I had to learn how to love another human being. If learning to love me was a challenge, imagine what loving someone else felt like… totally out of my comfort zone.
The thing about my husband was that he lead quite the hedonist life before me and had an itching desire to include me in it. While back in my drinking hay day I was no stranger to a bottle of Cristal (I still consider Cristal Rose 2000 the best bottle of champagne I ever had) or a vintage bottle of Vega Sicilia, half of what he brought to my table I had to politely decline.
No alcohol, whatsoever.
Regardless of the obvious, I still played with the possibility of maybe having one here, another a month later. Perhaps I could “control” my drinking since I hadn’t been in almost 2 years. After all, I had a husband not some random fuck boy to drink with. The possibility of potentially having “one” burned me on the inside, was I really NEVER going to have a drink with the man I’ll spend the rest of my life with? Why did he get the shit end of the deal?
I used to be a lot more fun to be around, in my opinion. He’s never known and never will know crazy alcoholic Adriana. He’s never known what a riot I once was, he never will. These two words, “more fun” haunted me for months on end. It’s not that our relationship was boring but there was a crazier side to me he didn’t know about. I would spend countless hours researching what it would mean if I had just one drink in my recovery. I didn’t need Google, I knew what would happen.
The shame and disappointment would set in, creating a hole deeper and wider than the one I have been repairing since entering recovery. I would start with just drinking “one” and end up with “one” bottle soon later, followed by bottles. I’d hate myself for giving in because that’s what my demons want me to do… give in and give up the beautiful world I have around me.
My sobriety is sacred, it’s as sacred to me as my marriage.
I remember hearing in AA that sobriety doesn’t get easier as the years pass by, it gets harder. I thought that PAWS was the most difficult part of recovery, I couldn’t be more wrong. I started to hit that difficult part after PAWS over the past few months. I have a great life that also gives me access to some of the best restaurants and wineries and I must sit there and hope the waiter doesn’t ask me why I don’t want to try their special wine for the 5th time because I’m tired of saying “I’m an alcoholic in recovery for addiction.” Or the part of my brain that dangles my former self in front of me that says, “That was the fun you, remember…?“
Nothing scares me more than morphing back into my former self before recovery and nothing scares me more than who I would become if I relapsed. Nothing would hurt me more than if I were to cave in and have “one” because I know deep down I can’t just have one, I’ll have many. I won’t stop. Knowing this gives me strength in sobriety. Knowing within myself that I can’t control my drinking gives me strength in sobriety. Knowing that I currently have such a beautiful life courtesy of my choice to get sober gives me the strength to stay sober. I understand the full consequences of my potential relapse, is it worth it? No.
Would my husband have fallen in love with the former me? I’ll never know but what I do know, is that no one else ever did. Not even me.