The Evolution of Birthdays – From Drinking to Sober
Thank you Google!
My birthday! Whoot whoot! How amazing it is to be sober on this day, especially knowing that there was a point in my life when I just didn’t think that this was ever going to be possible. Tonight I was thinking about how my birthdays have evolved over time.
The first birthday I drank was 16. Well, I tried to drink… I have never had more than a sip here and there till then. I was just to petrified to try it, not wanting to become like my alcoholic mother. But 16th birthday? Well I just got dared… So I proceeded to chug straight out of the Jack Daniel’s whiskey bottle and promptly vomited all over while running to the bathroom. I didn’t drink again for several years.
My next great memory was my 21st birthday, and the year one becomes the legal drinking age in the US. I proudly marched myself with my shiny ID down to the convenience store to buy some beer and wine coolers so I could proudly be able to smack my ID on the counter! Well, I didn’t get IDed, very disappointing, and I got very buzzed off of 4 pack of wine coolers! Hmmm.
Then my very memorable 25th birthday, which I remember completely even though I drank everyone under the table and did so very proudly, except for the few episodes of vomiting. But… I just got right back to it until wee hours of the morning. All my friends showed up, each bringing another exotic bottle of my favorite elixir. That was a grand birthday – I remember thinking.
30! What can I say about it? I started with a few shots of tequila and a friendly game of quarters – that’s a game in which you try to bounce a quarter off the table into a shot glass. If you missed then you had to take a shot. I was losing. I don’t remember much, just bits and pieces: loud music, many people I didn’t know, vomiting, trying to walk thru the house and holding myself up with the walls and passing out on the floor. I don’t really remember having a good time at all. I do remember waking up with a horrid hangover and just chugging a beer to get rid of it!
By the time my 35th birthday came around I was in an outpatient rehab. I was sober but only to get the law off my back. I had several serious consequences that had stemmed from my drinking and the rehab was court ordered. I was a mess. I had nothing. I just got some little job because the told me too. I was not able to see my daughter but only every other weekend with what they called an unannounced supervision. I hated being sober and I hated spending my bday sober and alone! It completely sucked. No party. No celebration. Just another ordinary day. Deep down I couldn’t wait for all the legal crap to be over so that I could drink again, and that hope alone kept me going! Pretty messed up, huh?
Oh and then 40… Forty was amazing! I was sober for 2 continuous years. My whole family showed up and all my sober fellowship friends. It was the biggest party I had since, well, maybe that party I had at 25. I remember it all. I now I have a family! And a house and a job. And no law in my life! There was no alcohol served – lots of coffee though! I got hugged more than ever. We danced, ate cake and laughed till my cheeks hurt. I have many pictures of that day. I have great memories and all warm and fuzzy. I felt loved. I felt whole. I couldn’t believe that all this was possible in sobriety.
And now today – a great day with family and friends and the fellowship. Lots of hugs and tears of joy. I just could not ask for more! I am sober and grateful!
How have your birthdays evolved?
If you, or anyone you know, is struggling with alcohol addiction, please click the Find Support link for an extensive list of support groups. Also please check out the links to many useful resources in the sidebar, and always feel free to contact me anytime at firstname.lastname@example.org.
You may also find some great inspiration and support from all the awesome sober bloggers listed in the side bar under POSTS I LIKE and RECOVERY BLOGGERS, as well as Sober Courage page on Facebook and Sober Courage on Twitter.