I'm just over 3 years 6 months sober.
When I meet new people at a social gathering and they offer me drink, I politely tell them that I don't drink. Some ask why. My carefully crafted reply is this: "I'm so good at it that's it's not fair to everyone else."
It's true. Both the statement itself and that I say it out loud.
Since I quit drinking, and if I'm talking about it with a friend, I always find myself saying "Well, you know, I wasn't that bad. I never once drove drunk and didn't wake up and drink all day. That was never me." All that is true too.
Which got me to thinking - what kind of drunk AM I?
I know I was a fun drunk. I know that there are some of my friends out there reading this, thinking "Yes she was!!! So much fun!!!"
But I wasn't much fun to Sean, who had to get me home, or to my kids, who missed me the next day as I slept off a wicked hangover.
I was the kind of drunk who couldn't stop at one drink. Ever. Family functions, dinners out, girls' night, whatever. I could never have just one. And I also used to wake up not remembering everything from the night before. Not every time, but a lot. I was always scared. Who did I offend? What did I say? Did I drunk Facebook? Drunk dial? Oh god it was mortifying. I felt bad all the time. I was always ready with a joke to laugh off my behavior, should anyone call me out on it. I walked around feeling nervous and guarded, always.
That's why I stopped. I just took it too far and was sick of feeling badly all of the time.
Now I know that some readers may be thinking, "Who cares? Once a drunk, always a drunk." Others may be thinking that I'm weak for not being able to control my drinking. A lot of you may be thinking that I used it as a crutch, to deal with pain and struggle.
You all are right.
And you all are entitled to whatever opinion you want to have about it. Everyone makes decisions based on their own experiences.
So I guess what's most important is not what kind of drunk you think I am, but what kind of drunk I think I am.
I think I am a strong fierce cold turkey quitting never having a sip since June 30, 2011 proud wife proud mom proud Lauren FORMER drunk. With cute shoes. Always with cute shoes. And a big, big smile.
That's who I think I am.