Friday evening I experienced one of those really significant moments – the universe really did conspire to put the lightbulb right in my path and there was no way I could miss it. Now, I don’t need any more evidence to understand that my very worst day sober is infinitely better than my very best day drunk, but it really got me. It got me so good I stood in the shower afterwards and shed tears of joy. OK, it’s the time of the month so my emotions are at their absolute highest intensity, but even so.
I was tired, a little cold and I had really full-on period cramps – the sort of cramps that remind you of early labour and that don’t go away even with pain killers, a hot water bottle and assuming the foetal position. It’s dreadful. And I get a bit lightheaded during this time too, possibly due to the fact that I’m prone to being low on iron and, well, “female issues” don’t help on that score, shall we say. OK, too much information perhaps! The point is, however, that I was not exactly in the mood for a run, but Sober Me is actually quite a determined person who follows through on things so we got ready. I pretty much made my peace with getting to the end of our street and telling Hubby to go off on his own, because given I can barely SIT normally with these cramps going on I didn’t exactly expect running to be a huge success.
We headed off and something magical happened. Despite initially feeling like my uterus was going to fall out of me (hm, maybe I’m fishing a little for sympathy here but it did hurt lots, OK?), once we were half way I almost started giggling out of sheer surprise. It felt so amazing! My stomach had stopped hurting so much, I felt strong and light on my feet, my breathing came easy and in synch so I was even able to chat with Hubby as we ran, and even though a few parts on the way back home were uphill we actually ran faster that last bit. Bloody hell (pun intended), this sounds so naff now that I’m writing it! I can’t actually describe this to you but I honestly had one of those hallelujah moments. We got back and I just couldn’t get over it, said to Hubby over and over how insane all of this is. If I were less concerned with “what the neighbours might think” I would have screamed with joy, arms outstretched to catch the sky – honestly. High-fiving Hubby had to do, but that’s OK.
It absolutely made my heart soar and I was overwhelmed with joy and gratitude – OK, I know this sounds like I’m exaggerating, but after throwing my life away for so many years this was HUGE to me. You see, when I was drinking, the absolute IDEAL and something quite unattainable would have been to be able to run 5k a few times a week. And of course I couldn’t. No one can, I don’t think, if they drink as much as I used to unless they’re made of absolute steel. When I drank, being able to run 5k was a really high goal and one I very rarely touched except for the spells here and there when I was dry.
And that’s what got me. There I was, Friday night – at my absolute worst and with period cramps from hell, yet we ran MORE THAN 5k and it felt like I flew the last couple of kilometres. At my absolute crappiest sober, even my highest drunk goals are absolutely smashed. I could have run further. How easily I can go and do the things Drunk Me barely dared even think about and here I am now – Sober Me and bossing it. It makes me ecstatic and sad at the same time. IF ONLY I’D KNOWN. But hey, no time like the present and even though it may seem sometimes like I wasted too much of my life drinking, perhaps I needed to learn these lessons in my own time.
Oh, how I wish I could verbalise this better so I could truly convey how it felt but there we are. Sobriety is making my dreams come true one by one.
Today I’m not going to drink.