This past May 18, I celebrated two years sober. (Except for the ceremonial wine I sip when I attend church with my mother. “That doesn’t count, that’s just Christ’s blood,” I say to her.)
I’ll be turning 25 this year and I am happy to report that I don’t feel like I am missing out on a thing. In fact, sobriety brings a clearer focus on the things I am working towards, and the things that block me from getting there.
I still go out with my girlfriends. We dance, and play card games. The entire time I’m busting out dance moves like the cast of Step Up, or sipping my green tea like its the best mixed drink in the world. All entirely sober, and no one else the wiser.
So for all those young adults coming into their right of passage to legally drink, here are a couple of my tidbits on what to do and think about so you don’t end up in a mental asylum. I speak from experience.
Thankfully the world is more accessible because of the internet, and counselling is by far from something anyone should be afraid of utilizing. It doesn’t make you weak, or unstable. In fact, you’re smart to access it now. You’ll be years ahead in dealing with the issues you are trying to cover up through instant and intense forms of gratification.
This is what addiction is. The need to recreate instant and intense forms of gratification, and that’s why we resort to substances like drugs an alcohol. They give us the “excuse” to unleash, and fill us with the false feeling of euphoria.
The downfall of substance abuse is that we begin to believe that we can not be as social, as fun, as funny, as artistic, or as truthful without it.
Just have faith in yourself. The first six months I found it difficult because I was stuck in my head of not knowing how to socialize. I felt like a child learning how to communicate all over again, and fighting off this need to be in the corner. But if you are around the right people, the people that commend you for your choice and not peer pressure you into doing something you don’t want, they’ll stick with you for life.