We all have to start at Day One. Every single one of us has typed Day One, some of us multiple times. I think when we start reading sober blogs we may be under the impression that there are rules to sobriety that need to be followed or else YOU’RE DOING IT WRONG.
Including but not limited to:
- You must attend AA meetings
- You must be in some sort of counseling/treatment
- You must meditate/practice mindfullness/see with your third eye, etc
- You must read books by sobriety experts
- You must read fiction/autobiography about alcoholism
- You must write your blog posts every day
- You must “de-clutter”
- You must do yoga
- You must become a runner/weight lifter/sporty person
- You must OR must not drink NA beer & wine (depending on who you ask)
- You must give yourself treats/find a substitute for alcohol during your craving periods
- You must post a list of gratitude
- You must have a PLAN
- You must start over at DAY ONE if you fuck up and have some alcohol
There are a lot of things on this list that helped me, and a lot of things that have help other people and they are not the same things. All of them are legit, none of them are necessary. At the end of the day there is only one rule to sobriety:
DON’T FUCKING DRINK
Everything else is just an opinion or an option.
I drank a few beers after I began my sobriety journey. I did not return to Day One. Partly because I didn’t get wasted, and I felt like my goal in the beginning was pretty much not to be wasted. But mostly because I knew in my heart, even by that point at 3 or 4 weeks in, that I DIDN’T WANT THAT ANYMORE. I felt weird while I was doing it and happy when it was over and relieved the next day when it was behind me. I re-joined my wagon, already in progress.
Day One is the first day of your journey, after you admit you want sobriety, the first step down a really long and sometimes treacherous road. Sometimes you’ll get a ride and it will seem like flying, and sometimes you’ll be crawling on your knees. It’s no wonder we fall occasionally, it’s exhausting.
I hope anyone who’s horrified and depressed and demoralized by ANOTHER FUCKING DAY ONE realizes that as long as they are committed to their sobriety they’re still on the path! You’re still doing it! You are not a failure, your road is just a little rockier than some. If you are in this for 100 days, it’s not going to matter if you have to tack on another 2-3 weeks at the end to make it legit. By that time, it won’t matter. If you are in this for the LONG HAUL, your missteps in the beginning will not be of consequence in a year, or two.
If you’re preference or goal is to do a certain number of sober days uninterrupted then by all means nothing wrong with Day One. But I hope no one lets that hold them back from the real goal which is being sober.
Whatever else you do, please please PLEASE don’t give up. Because if you do I’ll be up on your metaphorical blog-porch and IN YOUR FACE with my PESKY OPTIMISM telling that YOU CAN DO IT, DAMMIT. You’ve been warned.