My friend sent me an article this week titled "Can 30 Days Without Drinking Make You Feel Better?"
The guy who wrote the article made me reflect on the times when drinking still occurs to me even after 20+ years sober. There have been times when I thought that maybe if I only had an eye-openner with Sunday brunch, that would be OK? Then I sometimes wonder if, once in a while, a cocktail before dinner would be OK. I don't really miss wine that much, but I ought to be able to have a quality, cold beer with that steak dinner. What I sometimes think might be OK is that Grand Marnier or Cognac after dinner. What I really miss is that scoop of vanilla ice cream for dessert with a shot of Kahula poured over it. Once in a while I'm at a celebration when a champagne toast takes place. That would be OK because these celebrations don't happen that often.
It's sharing this insanity with sober friends that helps me realize that acting on these impulses would mean drinking a lot and often. I think that if you notice that you feel better after 30 days of not drinking, drinking was causing you to feel badly. When that happens it's a problem.
When the fellow who wrote the article says that he's not having a 5:00 craving, he's kidding himself. You don't have to be white knuckling it to be having a craving. When you think about drinking something physical is going on in your brain. Guess what, that's a craving.
I do think that there are plenty of people who drink occasionally who wouldn't notice that they feel better after 30 days of abstinence. Those are people who can truly "take it or leave it." It doesn't sound to me like the writer of the article is one of those people.