I hope you all had a wonderful weekend. Our weather was pretty bad last week in Seattle, but this weekend was magical. It was clear and sunny and simply gorgeous and I took full advantage of it.
In Seattle, for those of you who do not live here or have never been, it can be very overcast a lot of the time during the winter. There are, however, days like this where it is pure bliss and on these days you have to seize the moment and go outside, take a walk or a hike, whatever, as long as you’re outside.
About a month ago, I had a pretty bad mental breakdown and I was not in a good place at all. I was extremely anxious and in a matter of moments, I had completely fallen apart. I called my manager in tears and tried to explain how I couldn’t go into work because I couldn’t bear to have anyone see my puffy face and ask me questions. This was by far the saddest day of my life.
The first day I spent crying and sleeping. The second I decided that I needed to make a big change to my life because I was done with the cycle that I was in. It was unsustainable for me to continue living that way so I made a choice that I felt I could affect an immediate and positive change in my lifestyle.
I decided to stop drinking and smoking marijuana.
I feel like I need to preface this statement because I never had a drinking or drug abuse problem, although alcoholism and drug abuse does run in my family.
Most days I would come home from work and have a glass of wine with a few drags off of a joint that I had purchased. My issue was how these substances affected my emotional and mental wellness. When I smoked I never wanted to do anything, I was not one of those privileged people that existed as a high functioning pothead. I was the eat everything in sight, couch potato pothead. I wanted to stop drinking, not because I drank heavily, but because I drank consistently and I wasn’t okay with that.
I made this decision on December 13, 2018. Yesterday I made 30 days sober and I’ve taken note as to how not drinking and smoking has affected my mental and emotional health.
If you are thinking about doing a detox, or just getting sober, here are a few things that you might experience.
I’d just like to note that these are my experiences, and they may not be shared by everyone.
Withdrawal Will Hit You No Matter How Little Or How Much You Use
Like I mentioned before, I wasn’t a heavy user, but I was consistent so when I stopped cold turkey, I found that I was more irritable, emotional, and tired. My body also ached – it wasn’t a bad pain, but I just felt sore all over. This probably lasted me just a few days.
Everything Felt More Real
I felt so emotional and I had nothing to pour my anxiety, frustration, and sadness into, in my adult life, if I didn’t drink, I smoked and vice versa. One or both were a way to cope with my anxiety and trauma. Without either, I felt everything and nothing at all. I needed a healthy outlet so I decided to blog. I also eat way more chocolate, but that’s totally fine and delicious!
The traumas from the past and the current stressors that exist will not just go away because you’ve cut out drinking, you will feel them all the more and you have to deal with them one way or the other, so make sure that you have a plan of how to release those emotions. I would also recommend therapy to help you through the first few weeks and even months of your sobriety.
Your Weight Will Change
I don’t own a scale because I think they are evil. But I did notice that my clothes fit better, they weren’t as snug and I feel so much lighter. My boyfriend even commented that he thought that we both look like we’ve lost weight! (He also hasn’t been drinking).
More Physical Energy and Clarity Of The Mind
When I smoked every day I didn’t want to do anything. I would come home from work, smoke and then pass out on the sofa, this was my day today. When I stopped I noticed that I became way more productive. I could stay up later and do more activities. Hang out with friends and enjoy my environment more.
You Will Feel A Huge Since Of Pride And Achievement
I feel so good, so much better than I have in years since I stopped drinking and smoking. But more than how healthy I feel, there is something to be said about the effort you put in when you decide to challenge yourself to make an impactful change in your lifestyle for a month. It is an achievement and should be celebrated! You can even use the momentum you’ve built from your previous accomplishment to drive forward the next one, be it another month of sobriety or a completely different challenge altogether.
Those were my observations of my experience during this 30-day sobriety detox. Not everyone will share the same experience as there are people who use more, less and everything in between. I hope that if you decide to cut out drinking and drug usage I hope that you do so in a safe and controlled environment. Nothing is more important than your mental, emotional and physical health, because we all deserve to live our best and happiest lives.
Have you recently stopped drinking or using drugs or perhaps you started doing something that has positively impacted your life? How do you feel? I’d love to hear either below in a comment or privately in an email!