Saturday, November 12, 2011
For the best reason of all... to prove it to myself
Last week, one fine evening, I looked at the glass in my hand. It carried several ice cubes, and a comfortable dollop of quite good bourbon.
It was my third such glass of the evening.
Into my mind came this thought: "My friend, you seem to be drinking quite a bit of this fine beverage, and quite often too".
This thought could run good; "Life is good, that I can afford such fine luxury as I wish!" or it could run bad; "You have fallen slave to the devils brew!".
The thing is...you see... at one time... both my parents were alcoholics. Not nasty, not dysfunctional, but alcoholics none the less. I was tending bar and mixing drinks at age ten, for them and for their parties. At the time it was an adventure. Later in life, as I took part counseling groups of people working past dependencies, I realized better the dangers involved.
Those memories, and a very healthy respect for the life destroying effects of chemical dependency, were what flashed to mind as I looked to my chilled glass of excellent bourbon. I decided as I sat there, nicely glowing from several glasses of Mr. Brook's finest distilled spirits, that a week of abstinence was in order.
Not as a response to danger, but as a canary in a coal mine. A week of nothing alcoholic at all... a way to clear the decks and turn a cold and calculating eye towards my own habits and 'needs'.
I'll not deny myself the enjoyment of a cold brew or fine spirit, unless it becomes something I must have.... in which case I'll go to my grave never having another drop past the day I realize that.
So, a week of abstinence has passed, and the only change in my life is a certain increase in freedom as to when I take NSAID's for the aches and pains of onrushing years. Other than that, not a quiver.