Sometimes I get it into my head that if I stay busy doing stuff, that will keep me on the straight and narrow vis my addiction issues – primarily around eating. But I know that is really not a solution at all. I played those games for a long time with alcohol and drugs. In fact, one of my last drunks occurred by following exactly that logic. I had been working on a writing project for about two weeks. I had amazed myself (and others) by my enforced abstinence from drinking during the entire period. I told myself, and rightfully so, if I had one drink, I would be shot for at least the rest of the day, and perhaps longer. The project I was working on was critically important for me to complete.
I reached the final day of my enforced sobriety. I knew that if I worked about five hours that day, the project would be complete and I could drink all I wanted, having proven to myself that I could in fact abstain if need be. Therefore, surely I could not be an alcoholic, went my logic.
So that final day, I got up, drank a pot of coffee during the first couple hours of work, comfortable that I was nearing the successful completion. I had just a few hours more work to go. I decided that the pot of coffee had put me a bit too much on edge. I had three bottles of beer in the refrig, certainly not enough to be too much of a distraction from my work. I reasoned I was entitled to a small celebration. I quickly drank the three beers, and all thoughts fo the project were gone. So . . . you can guess the rest of the story. The last thing I remember was walking down the street to the liquor store. I woke up the next day about 8:00 AM with my head throbbing, and realizing that once again I had blown it. So much for another attempt at demonstrating to myself that I was somehow different, and not an alcoholic. I never did finish the project.
I continued drinking for another 4 or 5 months after that event. I made no attempts to limit or control my drinking during that time period. I knew what I was, I just had to make a decision what I was going to do about it. When I made that final decision, not drinking was the easiest thing in the world – the living life on life’s terms was the hard part I had to learn.
Moderation has never worked for me with alcohol or drugs.