I haven’t had cravings for alcohol for a long time. Since about four weeks in, I have had very occasional, fleeting thoughts about what it would be like to have a glass of wine but nothing more. Until last week that is.
Since last Wednesday or Thursday I have found myself really wanting a drink. It seems to happen on my journey home from work which is when I used to stop off for supplies and at home in the early evening – my prime drinking time. On Friday evening I told Mr So that I really fancied a glass of wine and he didn’t seem at all concerned. He observed that lots of people would be having a drink on a Friday night and what I was feeling was normal. For a brief moment I thought he was going to suggest popping out to get a bottle but he didn’t. Mr So doesn’t miss drinking one jot although he does drink quite a lot of alcohol free beer which gives him the taste he enjoyed. For me it was never really about the taste – it was the effect that I was after. It wouldn’t occur to Mr So to buy a bottle of wine for me and if by chance the idea did occur to him, it’s not something he would seriously consider.
When I went to the supermarket on Saturday I thought about what it would feel like to open a bottle of wine and glug it down. I could imagine the taste and the smell and the head softening sensation of that first drink. Thinking about it now my mouth is watering. An involuntary action over which I have no control. I don’t like it.
I am almost 300 days sober. I wasn’t expecting this. I haven’t heard of anyone else experiencing cravings this far in so what’s going on? I have been looking back at my diary from last year – just an appointments diary showing what I was doing rather than a full blown account of my day to day existence. I can see that lots of the pages have stickers on them – this is something I did when I was trying to moderate. On days when I was successful, I would give myself a sticker. Generally stickers come in groups of 3 or 4 with lengthy stickerless gaps in between. Sometimes I adopted a traffic light system so that I got a sticker every day, the colours of which would depend on whether I drank and if so, how much. I got a lot of red and amber stickers.
My diary also shows that at this time last year I had lots going on at work and at home. At work I was headed unbeknown into an incident where something very traumatic happened on a project I was working on. It had a profound effect on me and as a consequence, my drinking spiralled even further out of control. This time last year, although I didn’t know it, I was heading fast for my “rock bottom.”
So perhaps the cravings are to do with how I am feeling when I think back to this time last year. Although I haven’t consciously been thinking about it and didn’t identify a pattern until I looked at my diary, I am sure that in my subconscious somewhere all those thoughts and feelings are bobbing around and resurfacing from time to time. Especially about the incident at work. Perhaps when I get past the anniversary of what happened and reach my soberversary I will be in a better to place to put all that behind me and look to the future with more focus.