Goodbye to Alcohol – Suzanna

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Dear Alcohol,

I left you 6 months ago, and you haven’t heard from me since.

My mind is still unwinding from our relationship. I have spent no time ingesting you for 6 months now, however, I must admit, I have thought of you. Both with pleasant memories and foul ones.

There are times that I miss you and there are times that I’m very angry with you. There are even times that I forget about you completely.

We have been in each other’s lives for the better part of 40 years. I first met you when you and my dad were intimately involved, and you changed him. I didn’t know it was you that I saw in my father but I can say now that you played a large part in what overcame my dad and lead to my parent’s divorce in 1986. No thanks for that!

When I was 14, I tried you for the first time. You were both lively and harsh and I fell for you. I lost my agency after the 2nd ounce of you. My entire body felt lighter, smaller, and like it was floating. Then the curtains closed.  The next morning, I was terrifyingly sick.

I had had a walking and talking black-out the very first time I drank you.  I don’t know if I ever told you about this alcohol, but my mother blamed my father and me, not you. So, I swallowed that and blamed myself. I always blamed myself. Never you and not my dad. I loved you both too much.

You were described on TV and by others as a glamorous goal. You were a reward. Our love grew. Occasionally, you would let me down and not give me what I expected but I always forgave you and came to realize that this is the price that I had to pay for “life in the fast lane”.

I was always so excited to see you at the end of a hard day or after a great show in my theatre days. After a while, alcohol, and the disappointing dates with you came more frequently. I just didn’t enjoy being with you as much. I felt bad about myself and just plain felt sick so often, and you might remember, I created 10 rules to follow to help me create order around my dysfunctional relationship with you.

Rule #1 I can only see you every 2nd evening.

Rule #2 Every month, we may spend 1 week away from each other.

Rule #3 I will abstain from you all week, except if it’s appropriate to have dinner together.

Rule #4 I may imbibe on weekends only.

Rule #5 I can be with you only if there is a special event.

*Rule #6 I can have approximately 2X 5oz. glasses but if 5 oz. is too little, then I could just pour both into one glass. No problem.

Rule #7 I will work out and get very fit and therefore, will not want to be with you.

Rule #8 This is not so much a rule as a suggestion, I can investigate not being with you ever, just in case down the road we split up.

Rule #9 I can drink a margarita if someone else is making it.

Rule #10 I can only drink $40 worth every 2 weeks.

Inevitably, something would occur in my life, some event would rock my world and I would run into you and we would meet just for old times’ sake and then keep meeting every night. This went on for years.  You would wake me up in the middle of the night with a vengeance and I would spend the whole night with you. We would even call our old friends Casino and Cocaine.

I am now almost 54 years old, and my eyes have been opened with the help of a tribe. My tribe. They have penned their experiences and I have read their words. Doctors that suspected that you were not good for us humans have performed the research and we are all learning that we are not the problem. You are.

I was told by a group called AA that I attended for a while that YOU have all the power and that I just have to accept this. I was told that if I continued to see you, it was because we just hadn’t seen enough of each other and that I would know when we hit the bottom of our relationship and then I would be primed to break up with you for good.

I do not believe that that is true. Worse, I believe it to be a blatant lie from the pits of hell.

Alcohol, I need never partner with you again. I may see you from time to time across the room, and we may even exchange a smile, but you cannot be a part of my life.

Ever again.

You will never stop being poison and you will never stop being a soul-destroying, cell-obliterating, family-bludgeoning enemy.  The lie is over. I don’t hate you, you may have even helped me in the past but now I say:

Goodbye Alcohol Forever.

You took my agency all those decades ago.

I now take it back.

I have sovereignty.

I am Suzanna Read Porowski

Edmonton, Alberta, Canada

*credit “Nothing good can come from this” Kristi Coultier. This was one of her rules!

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