One in 14 Million

Well, well, well….. Now is probably the time to go and buy a lottery ticket because it seems the stars are aligned and I’m clearly defying all odds so even though I think you’re more likely to be struck by lightning I reckon I have a fair chance of winning. I just looked it up, and based on picking six out of 49 numbers there is for each line a one in 13,983,816 chance! One in 14 million. Definitely getting a bunch of tickets for various draws this week. I just KNOW it’s my time and that I’m currently being engulfed in a huge wave of good fortune. The fact that I woke up without a hangover this morning had at one point not too long ago much worse odds than a one in 14 million chance of winning the lottery.

It strikes me as a bit of a miracle, really. Maybe it is. Or maybe I’m just fucking kick-ass amazing and just got to a point where I really found my strength.

I don’t want to over analyse. That’s part of the reason why some AA meetings turn me off a little. All this incessant going over (and over and over and over again) every last thing. Jeez, if I had to replay and go over every thought I have and every step I take with a fine tooth comb like that I would go mad. But I have to remember that everyone has a different journey and just because in AA we all have in common that, really, we’re a bunch of drunks, we’re also all individuals with different backgrounds, experiences and beliefs. There’s a lot of talk about not being “good at life” and hence “needing” to drink. It’s stuff like that I don’t get or can relate to. I’m freaking awesome at life! It’s just that I ended up drinking too much and because of that I didn’t make the most of it. For me it’s the drinking that’s the issue, not my (in)ability to cope with whatever situation. Take away the booze and I’m actually a pretty damn great chick. Well, I think so anyway. Not saying I have Stephen Hawking’s intellect, Toni Morrison’s talent or Cameron Diaz’ beauty, but I’m Sophie and I like me! I’m kind, I’m sort of smart, I’m quite funny and although my teeth could be straighter and my arse could be smaller I’m happy with the hand I was dealt and I always have been. What I’m saying once again is that my drinking became a problem because of my reaction to it and nothing else.

Yep, I know I keep going on about it but it does get up my nose a little. “Oh, we’re alcoholics, we’re full of resentments”. Nope – can’t say I am. Sure, I get pissed off now and then but resentful? Do I carry stuff around that I’m still smarting about? I suppose my stepmum was a bit of a cow but as much as I try to dig deep all I can come up with is that she has very little impact – if any – on my life and that if anything I just feel quite sorry for her. Do I feel more bitterness in situations than a non-alcoholic would? Doubt it. I just don’t know that I do and in some AA meetings it’s almost like this collective “us” is painted out to be one stereotypical personality type that I cannot relate to no matter how hard I try.  A type that’s depressed, anxious and resentful. A type that lies, cheats, steals and isn’t very “good at life”. I understand someone who feels that way probably has an enormous need to share and by doing so get help untangling troublesome thoughts, which is amazing. For me personally it’d be far more interesting to spend time trying to understand the core problem, which as far as I understand it is the actual reason why we are all there. So I’m ignoring that part about what AA seems to assume I have to be to get my I’m-an-alcoholic badge or it’ll end up irritating me so much it’ll put me off going.

The reason (the only reason) I go to the meetings and the reason (again, the ONLY reason) I am pursuing a life of sobriety is once and for all because WHEN I HAVE A DRINK OF ALCOHOL I CANNOT STOP. That’s the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth. Pure and simple. Neat, eh?

Of course the byproduct of this unfortunate disposition is the very real possibility that I might drink myself into an early grave, I ruin my own chances of being the best I can be and as cherry on top (and what can be sensitive for a woman in her forties) I would also destroy my looks. Ruddy alkie skin ain’t a good look. It isn’t a good look for ANYONE.

Anyway, going back to what might get up one’s nose – it seems CA tried to recruit me and Ivy after last night’s meeting. I didn’t have the foggiest as to what was going on so when this (slightly frantic and now I think I know why) chick came up to us and wanted to talk about “CA meetings” I listened politely. Something about happily living sober and focus on all the positives, and to be honest all the AA chatter about how hard everything is, I didn’t mind hearing about more upbeat stuff. But it did feel quite preachy and that’s quite off-putting so I politely disengaged from the conversation and headed home. Spoke with Sparks and asked if she knew what “CA” is.

CA turns out to be Cocaine Anonymous.

I don’t know if I’m deeply offended (how DARE she – I’d never do drugs, I’m a very respectable alcoholic I’ll have you know) or perhaps a little bit flattered – perhaps she thought I seemed a bit too fun to just be your average drunk? Anyway. Don’t think I’ll be going as I seem to have enough on my hands figuring out this AA stuff before I start messing around with additional letter constellations.

Drugs though. Let’s not belittle or make fun out of any of the evils us terrible human beings fall victim to, whether it’s nicotine or crystal meth. Luckily I’ve never been very good with drugs. I’ve smoked pot on a few occasions (oh, this is 20-odd years ago), probably more than five times but definitely fewer than ten. Got me a bit giggly and very sleepy. Pointless. I tried ecstacy twice and hated it. Cocaine I also tried twice and it was thoroughly shit. Expensive and very, very shit. Drugs, or the ones I’ve tried anyway (not planning to take my experimentation any further) just don’t get the intended reaction in me. Ironically, I think I’m with the drugs the way a non-drunk is with alcohol! It doesn’t wake the beast. It doesn’t do much at all. So there’s never been any interest really. Drugs always struck me as pointless and so bar for those naughty little side steps I’ve never bothered and I’m very glad to report that because God help us all if drugs had had the effect on me that booze does. Then Sophie would be lying with her hands neatly arranged across her front some six or so feet under a pretty stone with a white dove on top.

Come on, let’s not be so gloomy! Just saying if I’d reacted to drugs the way I do to Sauv I wouldn’t be here now. But I am, yippie! And I don’t have a hangover! And I feel better and better each day! Sparks is coming over this evening so even though I don’t even feel a tinge of wine-lust I know (cocky, yes) that tomorrow I’ll wake up sober again. And again on Friday, when I will hangover-free collect beautiful hubby who is returning from a trip abroad and put my arms around him and tell him I did it. Then again I know he won’t have doubted me. He never does, that beautiful man and it’s pretty spectacular to have someone have such unfaltering belief in me. Because I don’t.

So perhaps that’s why I’m so anxious to underline that I’m not trying to be cocky or smug when I declare my little victories on this blog – they are victories to me because I just didn’t quite believe I could do this. Yet somehow, I can and I am. And it feels so wonderful I could cry tears of joy. It’s like that feeling on board the plane when you’re off on holiday and you’re at the start of the runway. The engines roar and then that powerful surge and enormous force when you start to move. Faster and faster until natural forces lift this gigantic body of metal into the air. It seems so unlikely, doesn’t it? Yet it’s also perfectly logical and what a plane is designed to do. It’s what it feels like. I’m taking off.

Today I’m not going to drink.


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