As of this writing, for over a year, I’ve been sober. Don’t let me mislead you. During this time, on two separate occasions, I drunk a glass of wine. Also, during New Years, I drunk a small portion of Champaign, smaller than what everyone else drunk. Yet, during all three incidents, I never got drunk. Most of the times during my year’s sobriety, I avoided alcohol.
Health issues like high blood pressure inspired my soberness. One time, for a whole week, I stayed in the hospital. Drinking contributed to that stay.
After seeing how my health improved without drinking, I chose to remain sober.
So, here are seven things I don’t miss about drinking.
1. Spending all my money on booze. Booze costs money. Many times, I would spend all my cash on booze. Sometimes, it would be money I actually needed for other things. Yet, to keep the good times rolling; I would spend up all my money on booze.
2. Hangovers. Hangovers always got in the way of my creativity. Trying to write a blog or poem with a hangover is not fun. Editing photos with a hangover isn’t fun either. With throbbing pain in my noggin, it is hard keeping focus.
I can hear some folks now. Take an aspirin or whatever pill. Yet, certain over-the-counter medications make my ears ring, still making hangovers a pain in the ass.
3. Blackouts. I never forgot the night I found myself driving through a neighborhood I didn’t recognize. This was after a night of me downing shots. Then, the next morning on my cellphone, I see a selfie I didn’t remember taking. The selfie contained a photo of a young lady and I cozying up at the bar counter.
4. Folks manipulating me by buying me drinks. The situation usually ran like this. A friend wants to go to a bar I hate. At this time, I don’t have much money on me. Next, the friend offers to buy the drinks, So, there I go, entering a bar I can’t stand.
Now, because I stopped drinking, this trick doesn’t work on me anymore. I can see it now. As I protest going to bar I can’t stand, what is the offer now?
“I’ll buy you a Diet Coke.”
5. Acting like an asshole. To the women whose booty I grabbed in the past, I apologize.
6. Worrying about being arrested for DUI. To this day, I feel very lucky I was never arrested for driving under the influence. Many nights, I knew I should not have been behind the car wheel. Yet, my drunk ass drove anyway.
During these times, the image of me spending a night in jail always raced through my mind. When I saw a cop car behind me, my heart rate pounded faster than usual.
As I mention DUI, there is something else I don’t miss about drunk driving. This leads into the next category.
7. Worrying about a car crash. During nights I really overdid the booze, visions of a car crash always raced through my mind as I drove home. This would have been worse than a DUI, especially if someone had been killed. I could have ended the life of someone’s mother, dad, husband, wife, offspring or any other important person. Add that to the prison sentence I would receive. Ending a life and receiving a prison sentence would have done serious damage to my sanity.