Don’t Wanna, Not Gonna

Do you have drinking dreams? I’ve had them every so often since I stopped drinking and they’re horrible. In the dream it’s already too late – I land in the dream and the scenario is that I’ve already been drinking. It’s so shitty and the shame, guilt and sadness are all so palpable it terrifies me. Then I wake up and because those dark feelings are so real I actually feel hungover, just for that first second when I open my eyes. And of course a moment later I realise it was a dream – or nightmare, rather! – and feel so grateful that this isn’t me now. I didn’t drink last night and I haven’t woken up with a crippling hangover. It’s such a relief. I have always thought of those dreams as my subconscious saying to me “Remember this, girl? Don’t you dare forget!“. It’s not a nice reminder given I have to relive the shame and guilt and horror of my actions but I’ll have to say it’s been very effective because the relief I feel at realising it was a dream is so deep it makes me a bit tearful. Tearful in the way you might be when you’re through the worst part of something, like how Bambino cried after the tooth pulling ordeal. Relief.

So the other night I had a drinking dream but it was the first of its kind and different from the ones I’ve had before. I dreamt Hubby and I were on holiday and I was going to drink. The intention was there and I had decided I would. That’s where I landed in the dream. I was walking down a supermarket aisle, perusing the bottles of white wine to find the kind I’d like. And then, in the dream, I’m holding a bottle of wine in my hands to read the label and my stomach turned. Don’t wanna, not gonna. And that was it. Dream Me decided not to drink because she actually didn’t want to.

The difference between the two types of drinking dream is of course that in one I don’t have a choice and in the other I do. I don’t know if this is significant, if it means I’m more solid in my sobriety and this dream shows this, but it was quite nice. I won’t allow myself to get cocky though – I think the moment I’m fooled into thinking I have sobriety sussed, or worse, I’m “cured”, I’ll be in a world of trouble. Anyone else having those dreams? Of either variety?

I’m sitting in a really noisy cafe this morning with Hubby. It’s the nicest place on the high street, a small independent, family run cafe and they serve the best breakfast. The acoustics of the place are horrendous though and it’s not as if this morning’s crowd is a bunch of university students on a pub crawl – just average Joes like Hubby and I having coffee and breakfast – but the sound levels are awful. I wonder if it’s the high ceiling or the brick walls, but it’s deafening. It’s bad enough when we’re actually just working on our laptops but to have any type of conversation would mean shouting at each other. And that’s what everyone seems to have to do.

Before the place filled up and we were able to hear each other, I asked Hubby if he ever worries that I’ll relapse. Because he is such a kind soul, I sometimes wonder if he hides his own worry from me in order not to hurt me. I really wanted to know, perhaps part of me wanted to really reassure him I feel so much more confident these days. He has a demanding job and I don’t want him to have the added pressure of a wife who might fall (or jump) off the wagon.

This isn’t a trick question and I don’t want you to worry about hurting my feelings, OK?” I said and looked into Hubby’s beautiful, soulful, big blue eyes trying to emphasise my point by unflinching eye contact.

OK.

Do you ever worry I’ll start drinking again?

No,” came the answer immediately and he tilted his head slightly as he held my gaze.

Really? Not ever? Not even when you’re travelling? Isn’t there any part of you that frets over me going for it when I’m alone like I used to?

No. You’re so set on this.

Wow. OK,” I said and couldn’t help smiling, “but how about this – what if you were away and we talked on the phone and you can hear me slurring and then I tell you I’m drinking. What would happen then? I mean, what would you feel?

I’d be shocked,” Hubby responded, deadpan and shrugged his shoulders. “Just really surprised.

God, you’re so fucking balanced!” I laughed, “this won’t make an interesting blog post AT ALL! I was after angst and fear and gut wrenching Greek tragedy emotion!

Hubby just smiled and for a moment I just got a little lost in how I love his perfect face (the man was carved by angels, I swear) and those gorgeous eyes through which you can just about catch a glimpse of his glorious soul. I snapped out of ogling Hubby and forced myself back to all my questions.

But wouldn’t you feel anxious, like get a knot in your stomach?” I insisted.

I’d worry for you, yeah.

Jeez, the man is unshakable. I’ve never known anyone to be so calm about things. It doesn’t matter what it is – if the whole world was on fire, he’d just take a look at the situation and figure out the best way to put it out. Me? I’d shout and scream and panic and freak out and flap around like a crazed seagull on amphetamine.

What about for YOU? As in what it’d mean for you and what YOU would have to live with? Wouldn’t you be worried about going back to where I was? And have a wife whose drinking is out of control?

Of course. I want you to be and feel your best. I don’t want to see you in a situation where you can’t,” he told me matter of fact.

OK, OK. Hubby isn’t one to get worked up, not even by a world on fire or a binge drinking, black-out lush wife. Just glanced over at him across the table from me, he has his focused work face on. Brow furrowed and staring intently on the screen. He isn’t typing so he’s probably looking through a presentation or something. My rock. My mother gave a perfect speech at our wedding celebration and I’m going to be as brazen as to copy in her lines below – they sum up the man I married:

For all the reasons I have today to feel grateful, one of the biggest is, that it is you [Hubby], that my daughter has chosen for her husband. You are a kind and caring person that stands steady even in the stormiest weather. I trust you and your love for her. I welcome you and your sons, [Bonus #1] and [Bonus #2], to our family, something I do with all my heart.

Her whole speech was amazing and I don’t think there was a dry eye in the house. Even my stepmother pointed out how great it was, and she isn’t one to throw compliments around her and certainly not to her husband’s first wife. But those few lines sum Hubby up. Sweet Lord, this has turned into some sort of ode to the wonder that is Hubby, but he really is so utterly wonderful and I’m a very, very lucky lady. I sometimes wonder if he married me for the challenge.

Today I’m not going to drink.

16 thoughts on “Don’t Wanna, Not Gonna

    • Not boring! That’s awesome! Sounds like the one I had this time – almost like you’re back in that scenario by mistake and then sort of realise you really don’t want to go there. Good to know – lots of people I know, including myself, have the other variety where we’ve already started drinking and this was therefore a bit new. As always here in the blogosphere, it turns out I’m not alone. ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  1. I loved the second to the last line, wondering if your husband married you for the challenge. My wife is also a challenge. I married her because she’s a perfect Al Pacino woman… “SHE’S GOT A GREAT @$$!” (from Heat). The challenge part was just a bonus.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I still occasionally have a drinking dream. One day I woke up and could not shake the feeling I had decided to drink and then pretend I hadn’t. I can still remember the confusion. Sigh, dreams.

    I know I didn’t drink today! That’s the most important thing.

    It’s love,y you have a supportive husband. Take his word that he’s proud of you and relieved that you have found sobriety. You are doing a huge thing! Bravo.

    Anne

    Liked by 2 people

  3. It’s awesome you have a supportive husband. I’m married to a normie who thinks that “someday” I’ll “be better” and can share a drink with her. Granted, she doesn’t mean any ill-will, but it makes it difficult.

    And drinking dreams? Well, the past couple of weeks have been full of DAY dreams of drinking, the night dreams are entirely different and not good either. My focus, however, is on today.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Dreams with drinking don’t affect me one way or another; it’s natural, I suppose, to dream about things one used to do often but cannot anymore. I also have dreams about riding my horse that died a few years ago. When something has been a part of you for a long time, well, you will likely include it in your nocturnal world.

    My husband is kind about my former awful drinking ways, but the way he shows his kindness is by ABSOLUTELY respecting my firm, unswerving embargo on the subject. The last thing on earth I will ever do is talk about it, or refer to it in any way. I just refuse to go on about it, certainly, can’t explain it, and it is just not a topic he is allowed to mention, ever. Period. Those are my (unspoken) terms, in exchange for begrudgingly stopping the wine. If he has some need to explore all the pain my drinking caused him, he can go tell it to a therapist, because I simply cannot go over that stuff.

    You are admirable for your work in that rehab place. What a good person you are.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thank you for your comment – I love hearing other people’s views and perspectives. It’s your right whether you choose (or want) to discuss it or not and I can understand the wish not to. I guess we all deal with it in our own way and I don’t thing there are right or wrong ways. Good on you for doing what’s best for you and great that your husband respects that – that’s awesome.

      Not sure about good – I suspect it’s common that people who break free are so grateful we have that we desperately want to pay it forward. Many people I work with are also recovering addicts and you can see how they put their heart and soul into it because they want nothing more than for others suffering to find that freedom too.

      Like

  5. Thankfully I can’t remember having any dreams / nightmares but just like you I do remind myself often how terrible it was. Not so that I can feel like crap but more to remind myself how crap it was and how blessed life is now without it. If I only remembered the good times I think that would be dangerous because that feels like mentally letting myself off the hook and giving myself permission to feel that “oh it wasn’t that bad”. I too have a huge fear that one day I will fuck up but it is the same fear that stops me. XOX

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I love how you wrote the process into this post! (Where you were writing etc.) This is something I do a lot and I like reading other’s processes too. Wonderful that Hubby is so supportive, and the way you express your love for him is beautiful. ❤️

    Liked by 2 people

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