September 1, 2020

Dear Alcohol, I’m so Glad we Broke Up.

Dear Alcohol,

It has been 595 days since we were together last. Some days it feels like yesterday, other days it feels like an eternity.

I wanted to let you know that I am doing really well, you don’t need to worry about me.

I know when we first broke up I cried a lot and I was so sad and uncomfortable. That first year without you felt like a roller-coaster.

Similar to death, I found myself fighting through all seven stages of grief over you: disbelief, denial, bargaining, guilt, anger, depression—and soon after, acceptance and hope. It was hard. I never, ever want to have to go through that again.

I had to learn what it was like to go to my first party without you, my first sporting event, my first girls’ night out. That first holiday, I missed you a lot. Funny though, every time I did something without you, I got a tiny bit more comfortable just being me. I’ve been getting to know myself since I don’t have you around to distract me.

My first sober vacation was a little awkward, but I had fun with the kids. And you know what? I ended up having a pretty good time overall; it surprised me! I still remember so many moments that I would have forgotten if you and I were still together. The kids are getting older and I do not want to miss a thing. Being able to remember things so clearly is pretty cool, I’m sure you can understand that.

You will be happy to hear that I’m sleeping so much better! I know you tried so hard to help me, but I truly do get better sleep without you. It makes such a difference in my day-to-day life. Remember how I used to wake up at 3 a.m. all panicky after you were over? I sleep through the night now and it feels good to wake up in the morning without a hangover or any guilt.

Carrying around those extra pounds, you knew I was never happy about that extra weight. Well, I’m finally eating better and without you, it is so much easier. Oh my god, I used to eat the worst things for my body when we were together! Yes, I still love chips and queso.

You never told me that my anxiety ate you up! I had no idea. When I stopped seeing you, my anxiety diminished by about 80 percent. I feel calm now and it’s so weird! It is a feeling I’ve had to get used to for sure. The last few years we were together, I was such a mess.

You would be proud! I have come out of my shell a little more as I have gotten more comfortable not having you hold my hand. It was hard at first because it was so new—25 years is a long time together!

I have learned to be patient with myself as I continue to live my day-to-day life without you. Every day that I do, I feel a little stronger—a little more confident. I can’t believe I’m really doing it! I feel proud of myself on most days.

From what I can tell, you are doing just fine without me, too. It’s so much better this way. Letting you go was a painful process, but oh so worth it.

I am so glad we broke up. I’m so happy to be happy.



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