Sober, Sometimes

The difference between me embracing the drunken life and someone who is an alcoholic is that I am not suffering from a disease. I do not need to drink, I choose to. There is no emotional trauma from my past that I am using alcohol to escape from, and I am not empty inside. I am not trying to commit suicide by liquor. I simply enjoy being drunk and I want to be happy as often as I can. I never need to drink. I can have a beer or three and stop drinking alcohol after that, but I rarely choose that path.

I did fear that I was going to have trouble with sobriety a few years ago after I had an alcohol related hospitalization. I was drinking nearly every day from my teenage years right up until I was in late my forties. There were an odd day here or there when I was sober, but I was most usually drunk. I would drink in the morning before school or work, drink during the lunch break and once the responsibility portion of my day was complete, the heavy drinking would begin. Somehow, I managed to graduate high school and work full time jobs, all while being inebriated. The two longest relationships in my life were with women who only drank moderately, or not at all, but tolerated my being a drunk. There were some periods in my life when I did not get drunk, not by my own choice but because it was impossible when I was in a place where there was no alcohol available, or I was sick. There were other times when I would take some time off from drinking, just to prove to myself that I could do it, but I find sobriety boring. I love the chaos of the drunken environment. The daily drinking came to an end when, in my late forties, my stomach exploded like an old and worn out tire on a freeway. I had been ignoring an ulcer and went to the hospital vomiting blood. The three days that I was in the hospital were enough for my body to rid itself of all of the alcohol in my system, so I never suffered the delirium tremors of withdrawal. What scared me was my work schedule. Could I work the night shift without drinking until I passed out every day? The answer was yes, but not without the help of medication. For the past few years, instead of alcohol I am knocking myself out with alprazalom.

After the bloody vomit scare, I spent a few weeks sober and was fine when I was home alone, but the one thing that I enjoy doing for social entertainment is going to see live music and it was not as much fun for me without the alcohol. Also, it annoyed me to pay as much money for water in a club as for liquor. And, most of the time I am going out alone and the only person I will talk to all night is the bartender. I hate to see a bartender lonely.

When given a reason to, I will stay sober. Sometimes, someone will request that I remain sober while I am in their company and I will do so. I would not spend all of my time with someone who only wants to be with me when I am sober, because I would miss being drunk too much. I have never met anyone in my life that was worth the sacrifice of giving up alcohol forever. I was drunk in my mother’s womb, and I hope to be drunk on the day that I die.

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