The Click

21 Nov

There are times when sobriety feels easy. When the thought of having a drink seems ludicrous. When you gaze around at the mayhem of wild party and think “what are they DOING to themselves?!”. When you think back to those dark days of drinking and give a silent thank you to whatever or whoever is keeping you sober.

Currently I’m in one of these phases. Not drinking was so hard for so long that I NEVER believed I’d have won the battle. And of course the battle is ongoing and never lost nor won, but I consider each sober day a minor victory.

Life is just EASIER when you’re not drinking. It works better, you feel more stable, (generally) more able to cope with what life throws at you… But it’s not easy.

I think when I was first trying to get sober I thought that the people who had any length of time under their belt just had it sorted, that they possessed some mythical quality that I did not. That they somehow had more willpower or inner strength than I. Now I know this not to be true.

I’ve spoken before about how the spiritual principles and programme of AA have been surprisingly centre stage in my recovery. AA is what got me sober for any significant period of time and has kept me sober. But there’s a mystery at the heart of it for me, and that same mystery applies to drinkers who have got sober without a 12 step programme. How do we stop drinking if we’re addicted? What changes in that final time that we break the cycle?

The easiest solution to getting sober is, of course, to stop drinking. To not pick up. To eschew alcohol of any kind. And yet at the centre of our disease is a compulsion that is so strong we cannot help ourselves.

The fact that sobriety can, at any time, for any of us, can, however fleeting, feel easy is some sort of wonderful miracle. We are so lucky to be removed from that compulsion. And yet any of us can reach that point, but how we do that is a very individual path. When we find that moment, that “click” where we want to be sober more than we want to drink, it’s incredible. For me it was very gradual, but once I’d found it I felt I could so this thing.

I’d love to hear from non- AA folk about how and when that click came. Because all I wanted to do when I was drinking was to know how other people made it to that magic moment. So if you can, take a little moment to share in the comments the story of your “click.”

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28 Responses to “The Click”

  1. Annie November 21, 2014 at 10:41 am #

    No click for me yet, so I’ll be really interested to see what people write here. Thanks FFF. Annie x

    • FitFatFood November 21, 2014 at 11:34 am #

      I was thinking of you when I wrote this. It’s helpful to hear it wasn’t easy and how different people reached that click x x x

  2. lifewithoutvodkarocks November 21, 2014 at 10:53 am #

    Great question….. I had been struggling (and more often than not, failing) with moderation for a long, long time. The ‘click’ for me was saying the words out loud: “I need to stop drinking”.I said this to my husband and it just opened the floodgates. I finally poured out all my fears, concerns, and worries about my drinking and it solidified my decision to quit. That was 96 – 96!!! – days ago. I am never going back. This journey has been tough at times, but dealing with the nonstop static (as regards my relationship with booze) in my brain was way, WAY harder.

    • FitFatFood November 21, 2014 at 11:34 am #

      96 days! Amazing! And here the change really begins ๐Ÿ™‚ what a great road you have ahead x x x

    • ainsobriety November 21, 2014 at 2:28 pm #

      I agree. There is power in voicing the truth.

  3. Bea November 21, 2014 at 12:10 pm #

    My click has been recognising that I’d exhausted all other options. To continue on as before would be acknowledging that my life would forever feel like this dark spiral of self-loathing. I’d barricaded myself into a fortress and it felt, finally, like a relief to break out. Therein lay hope and life. Bea x

  4. ainsobriety November 21, 2014 at 2:28 pm #

    My click came after many many day ones and plans to quit. Many nights of despair and self hatred. All done privately.

    One day someone told my husband they thought he had a drinking problem. That he had to stop. And so I summoned up all my courage and said I have a problem too! And it is crushing my very soul Let’s do this. And I went home and emptied the house of alcohol and that was day 1. I also called a therapist that day. Almost a year ago. Dec 1, 2013.

    In the following months I have embraced an open mind. I use yoga, a little AA, lots of books, online support and blogging.

    I think voicing the deep dark pain was the change. It prevented me from changing my mind in the first few weeks. And it made my inner struggle real.

    I’m forever grateful. I love sobriety and recovery. Life is just so much better.

    Anne

  5. soberp82 November 21, 2014 at 6:32 pm #

    For me, I knew I couldn’t continue as I was because I would have lost my partner. My click came when I read a blog about someone who was sober – I could relate to their story and knew it wasn’t just me – others had had enough too and wanted to change. I read Jason vales book which was a huge turning point for me. I found Belle & read other blogs & listened to podcasts. I’m 300 days sober now & thankful every day ๐Ÿ˜€

  6. e12p November 21, 2014 at 7:03 pm #

    My wife asked me what “clicked” for me this time instead of the prior attempts at stopping or cutting back. And, I have no real answer. Best I can guess is that I simply got sick and tired of being sick and tired. There was nothing magical or special about the day I stopped drinking, no big announcement, no event or “bottom” event. I just stopped. Since then, it’s been a combination of blogging, reading books and blogs and just not drinking. Nothing magical. I think I’m still in your “gradual” phase of getting to the ultimate click.

  7. jenisthesoberist November 21, 2014 at 7:14 pm #

    I told my husband about my blackouts and acting in an unsafe manner ‘if this happens one more time I am going to stop’, and then let it happen two or three more times before saying enough is enough. I felt truly scared at that point. A friend had confronted me about drinking, I had problems piling up, and I just KNEW that I had to quit or it would hurt my family and myself, maybe even kill me. Then I prayed to the Universe to help me get and stay sober. It has been really hard at times, but I pray to the Universe to help me stay sober, write down a few things that I am grateful for, take a bubble bath, and it eventually gets easier again.

  8. primrose November 21, 2014 at 8:47 pm #

    can I be greedy and have two moments?! I’ve blogged about them both already so maybe that only counts as one?!

    the first one, which was during my last week of drinking alcohol. standing in front of the fridge, trying to work out what I could get away with drinking – and realising that drinking had stopped being any fun at all and was ‘just’ an addiction.

    the second click was at the moment when we had all arrived for the September London meet-up. it was the first time I had ever met other people in recovery in real life. and I felt almost a physical shift inside me looking round at us all – all lovely, ordinary, flawed, amazing people. it made being sober real and concrete for me, not just a little game I was playing in my own head. real and therefore easier, because more difficult to disregard as a whim? I was lucky because I felt I ‘knew’ some of the people there through their blogs, and so it wasn’t like walking into any other recovery group. but that ‘click’ of meeting sober people in real life was HUGELY valuable to me – I can’t recommend it highly enough ๐Ÿ™‚ ๐Ÿ™‚

    fantastic comments here. thanks everyone for sharing them!

    • FitFatFood November 22, 2014 at 1:06 pm #

      Go on then, you can have two ๐Ÿ˜‰ I might be greedier and have 3..!

      One of my clicks about sobriety being possible was at belle’s meet up last year- I suddenly had the shame removed when I saw women like the beautiful and together Carrie and Sober Journalist. It made me realise that it’s ok to have this problem and that there was a way out.

      My second was probably at the first AA meeting where I wept my eyes out and knew everything would be ok.

      The 3rd was a moment when my sponsor text me saying something like “there will come a time when you want to be sober more than you want to drink” and I realised that that moment was now, I was IN that moment, I was doing it. Pretty amazing.

  9. clearlee November 22, 2014 at 3:16 am #

    I think about this all the time because it took me so long to get some serious sober time under my belt and I kept praying for the “click” to happen. In all honesty, my click happened when I realized, in a very deep depression, that taking my own life was becoming something that I was actually thinking about doing. That’s how desperate I was. And I had a moment of clarity and decided that I was willing to do whatever it took to get better and LIVE. This has meant being willing to change my life, which I wasn’t really willing to do before. I am not an AA member but I have been to a few meetings and I do use some of their thinking. I definitely have opened up to a spiritual connection which is helping me A LOT. I am still learning what it takes for me to stay sober. And I am still willing to do whatever it takes ๐Ÿ™‚

    • FitFatFood November 22, 2014 at 12:52 pm #

      Wow, an incredibly powerful story that reveals the power of what we’re dealing with in alcohol. Thanks for sharing that x

  10. lucy2610 November 22, 2014 at 11:47 am #

    FFF no click as such – just a cascade of serendipity on one day – seeing counsellor and discussing Allen Carr book and talking to her for first time about my drinking (had always skimmed over/dodged before + plus she had recently stopped too) and then close friend/running buddy coming to stay and I always seem to make big decisions when she’s around! Maybe she brings out the best in me, I don’t know, but that was it, that day I decided and then 6 days later I stopped xx

    • FitFatFood November 22, 2014 at 12:54 pm #

      That’s amazing- I never knew it happened like that. And you stopped first time too? Isn’t it interesting how for some of us, it just becomes possible to stop when we should and others take more time. From what I’ve observed it doesn’t matter how long or how much we’ve been drinking, for some if just clicks earlier and for others (like me) it takes a lot longer to make it.

      • lucy2610 November 22, 2014 at 1:02 pm #

        In honesty FFF I had stopped for a week, a month, even 3 months while I was trying to give up the fags but this was the first time I decided to stop drinking for drinkings sake (I’d been clear of the fags for a year) though I’d had some practice because of ciggies.

    • FitFatFood November 22, 2014 at 12:54 pm #

      Ps, I still can’t comment on your blog via WordPress. Every day I want to. Mysterious!

      • lucy2610 November 22, 2014 at 1:03 pm #

        Weird indeed! Not to worry lovely xx

      • FitFatFood November 22, 2014 at 1:08 pm #

        I just think you must think im lazy! Not so ๐Ÿ™‚ am an avid reader x

      • lucy2610 November 22, 2014 at 1:18 pm #

        The thought honestly hadn’t crossed my mind hon. Thank you ๐Ÿ™‚ xx

  11. primrose December 1, 2014 at 10:53 am #

    hey hon – was hoping to see you yesterday! sorry you couldn’t make it – hope everything is ok? xxx

    • FitFatFood December 6, 2014 at 11:53 pm #

      I would have loved to come but I was away ๐Ÿ˜ฆ

      All is wonderful, I’ll blog soon. Hope you are as radiant as ever ๐Ÿ™‚

      • primrose December 7, 2014 at 10:32 am #

        extremely glad to hear that all is wonderful with you ๐Ÿ™‚ radiating away here too thank you! xxxx

      • primrose December 13, 2014 at 9:48 am #

        by the way have just emailed you! xx

  12. tryingsobriety December 8, 2014 at 7:17 pm #

    I’ve only been stopped for a few weeks, so I’m not sure I’ve had my click yet. I hope so. I’m trying some new tools this time, like blogging, not just attempting to muscle through it on my own. So we’ll see.

    Just want to tell you also how inspirational your blog has been. I read it from start to finish the other day and thought, I want that happiness for myself!

    • FitFatFood December 8, 2014 at 10:37 pm #

      I am so pleased to read this- be assured there is so much hope ahead of you. I’ve seen it first hand ๐Ÿ™‚ Best of luck x x xx x x xx

  13. rachel black December 23, 2014 at 12:27 am #

    My click to change was having the first glass of wine one evening while thinking ‘here we go again’. I didn’t want it but I couldn’t NOT drink it. I had failed to moderate many times and knew that to stop was my only option. No half way houses. Not to mention I was becoming increasingly unwell with hangovers. Mmmmm, bit of a muddle there.
    Would like to echo tryingsobriety in that I love your blog. I think I have the same combination of food and drink problems!

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