Truth be told, I really stopped drinking prior to June 1. But for argument’s sake, I’m making June 1 my official start. Some morsels of information and clarity that I’ve already encountered include the following:

1. I gave people way too much credit when I was drinking.
Some people are just mean! They get a few drinks in them and it’s no holds barred. It’s suddenly the Wild West and I am the one that does something wrong and takes a beating. But the next day, I assumed that I was being sensitive or somehow brought that treatment upon myself. I notice that I was often taking the blame for the behavior of others, making excuses like “I pushed that person to react that way,” or “I was being over the top.” That was a sad realization.

2. The action of drinking is more of a habit than the sensation of alcohol.
Honestly, I don’t crave the alcohol. Simply, there is no desire to have it. I crave chocolate more than I crave wine, beer, or liquor. There is no difference though in the need to continue drinking a liquid when I’m out with friends. The amount of ginger ale I’ve ingested in the last week is staggering compared to previous soda consumption.

3. My mood and outlook have improved dramatically.
After getting over the whole painkiller ordeal, I am noticing that I want things to get better and I am much more determined to work for it. I am walking, talking, and thinking with more confidence. Situations involving some mean drunk people are clearer to me, and I’m finally able to think about them, contemplate them, and devise an approach with a level head. My tolerance for emotional and mental abuse is running low, not that there should be any tolerance for abuse under any circumstances.

This journey continues, and I hope it brings much more clarity and joy into my life.