Awhile ago I posted on my blog’s Facebook page that I was considering not drinking alcohol anymore in light of my dad’s death. I have come to the decision that I am going to follow through with that. I grew up in a household with wonderful parents as role models. They didn’t smoke, do drugs, party around us, my mom didn’t drink, and when my dad did drink — it was a beer while BBQing. I do want our children to be exposed to alcohol and the proper ways to enjoy it. I definitely want them to grow up around it so that it’s not a “forbidden fruit” when they are old enough to get their hands on it. Jay is that kind of drinker. He has a beer when he BBQ’s, or after a hockey game or a hard day’s work in the summer. Rarely does he have more than one and if he does, it’s after the kids are in bed. I may be bumping shoulders here, but I think it’s extremely tacky for parents to be drunk in front of their children. Yes, my dad was an alcoholic, but I didn’t grow up with him drinking around us all the time, stumbling around drunk – and for that, I am thankful. I don’t want to be dependent on alcohol to pick me up when I’m feeling down. Have I posted stereotypical pictures of a bubble bath and a glass of wine after a hard day of mothering? Absolutely. I don’t think anyone should change doing that, but for me, I can’t become reliant, even in a “once-in-awhile” fashion, on alcohol to boost my mood and drown my sorrows in. I don’t feel the need in my life for “wine-o-clock”…I’d rather go for a walk and pray if I’m having an awful day. Cocktails aren’t a necessary part of my life, so I’m going to continue living that way. I’ve never been much of a drinker anyway, so I’m not missing out on much. A glass of Moscato here, a cold Bud Light Lime in the summer there…but that’s about it.
The hard fact of the matter is, no matter how much I think I’m in control, I’m the daughter of an alcoholic, who was the nephew of at least 5 alcoholics. Did I also mentioned that they have all died due to alcoholism-related illness? And that alcoholism has a genetic component? I can’t ignore the facts and I can’t put myself into that risk bracket. I can claim all I want that I would never become dependent on alcohol, but the only way I can guarantee that is through my choice to abstain from it. I got a nasty preview of what I could be like as a girl who drinks too much. I had been dating Jay for a year and we were ready to go out and party with all of our friends at a big university cabaret. Me and a girlfriend split a 2-6 (26 oz bottle) of liquor BEFORE we got to the party. I kept drinking when we got there, Jay politely tried to cut me off and I spit a drink in his face. Did you read that? Let me repeat: I spit a drink in his face. Praise God that Jay knew me better and didn’t give up on me. The next day I made a decision to never get drunk with Jay again, and I’ve kept to that decision with the exception of a few too many Singha beers while traveling in Thailand and in Maui on vacation, but it was just the two of us in a completely different setting. In fact, since that night I’ve only been drunk a handful of times with girlfriends and I have happily been the designated driver ever since. I certainly have not been drunk in front of Jay’s friends as I did not want to embarrass myself like that again. I want to be a good role model for my children. I know a ton of you who are reading this love the wine, love the new strawberita’s and enjoy a plethora of cocktails. Keep on keepin’ on, Sisters! No judgment here — it’s just not for me. My own bit of history with alcohol, the family history, my dad’s recent death…it’s just time for me to nip this in the bud.
Have you ever done anything like this before? Cut something out of your life even though you don’t do it much or don’t have problems because of it?