Hi, it’s me, Venus. I sort of have a drinking problem. I hear in Youtube that it’s called “Gray Area Drinking” now. Snort.
I have always been a drinker. My mum drinks, so does my brother. Ever one drinks right? I never really believed alcohol was an addiction. Well, until that date with Johnson.
This is my diary and I’m going to say what I want to say. I’m not going to be ashamed of what I’m thinking.
I met him at a restaurant. Johnson is about my age (I think? I didn’t ask.) He’s cute and charming, he’s an engineer in a posh office. We had a nice dinner, and then some wine. All the time we were together, I felt shabby, outdated and fat. I kept on staring at the Merlot. I was annoyed but I didn’t know why.
I kept on staring at the glass of wine.
Talk to me, my friend. Tell me what to say to this beautiful man.
I realized then I wasn’t with Johnson. I was dating the Merlot.
Me, Venus, having a date with wine.
Me, Venus, almost thirty, failed the A-level Maths Venus, stuck in a dead end job answering calls from people stuck in the lift. That’s me. Oi, how pathetic.
What a joke. I used to dream once. I’m like those people I help at work. I need to get un-stuck, I need to fix my life. I’m not thirty yet!
I’ve never really hit rock bottom, you see. That date was my turning point. Boys used to notice me. I wanted Johnson to notice me. What did he see happn, I wonder? Will he call me again?
I hope he didn’t regret dating me. I want to see him again. But this time, I don’t want the wine distracting me.
I have a horrid aunt, her name is Beth. She’s an alcoholic, she’s been to alcohol rehab, but I know she still drinks. I don’t want to talk to her, I don’t even like to think about her. But when I was with Johnson, I saw my reflection in the glass of wine, and I saw how I’m going to be her if I don’t stop. Soon.
I’ve been hearing the word “Soberista” going around recently. I finally got curious enough to Google it.
Is alcohol a drug? Do I really have to give it up? I don’t have a drinking problem. I am not an alcoholic. I’m not like my out of sorts aunt.
But apparently, I sort of kind of, am.
A gray area drinker, that’s what they call it.
So here I am, where do I start? I need a friend. I can’t do this by myself.
I Googled around until I found an online forum and drinkchat.
Excellent. I can just chat. I don’t need to tell anyone.
Let’s give this Sober thing a go.
It’s been seven days since my last drink. My hands are shaking. I want out of this. I can’t do this. It’s stupid. I can always go back to my old life.
But I don’t want my old life.
I hit chat.
If it doesn’t work, I’m going to call mum soon.
Also in week 1…
I’ve been sleeping a lot. I haven’t slept so much in years.
Last night, I dreamt something and it disturbed me enough to make me open this and type.
I dreamt I was flying. Not, flying in the air, flying. I mean being a part of the cabin crew, flying. I have always wanted to be a flight attendant. The uniform has sex appeal, and I’ve wanted to wear it since I was a little girl.
So last night, I dreamt I was flying, I was on the plane giving safety instructions like they do professionally, and I was in that sexy uniform, all grown-up and classy. At the back of my head, I didn’t know what I was doing. (I guess it was the part who knew I was dreaming). But for a big part of that dream, I felt like a rockstar.
I want to be that rockstar.
But to be that person, I need three GCSEs, Science, English and Maths, at C grade. Oh no. Maths.
I’m avoiding hanging out with my friends at work. This is no good.
Yesterday was Friday so I decided, enough is enough. No commitments here. I will just test the waters to see if I can do it or not.
And you know what I discovered? Alcohol free beer. Yay!
I still want to be a flight attendant. Goodness knows how long I’ve been trying not to think about that since I had the dream. My greatest frustration in life so far. Failing my Maths and not being able to apply for the job I really want. That’s the effect of dreaming and sleeping more I guess.
It’s time to call my mum and talk about it.
I’ll also Google up something and see if I can still do something about it.
I made myself a little bargain. If I make it to the end of this week (a month alcohol-free!), then I will direct message Johnson. As a personal rule, I don’t message them blokes, they message me.
Meanwhile, I’m heading out to my first meet-and-greet with some Soberistas.
Should be a piece of cake. And speaking of cake. I do notice that I am craving eating a lot of those Double Deckers lately. Too many, if you ask me. Am I replacing wine with candy? This bothers me.
Later, at the end of the week
Congratulate me! I made it through the weekend! Thanks to my Soberista friends. Some realizations:
1. The party goes on even without the beer.
2. I haven’t heard music, real music for ages
3. There are far cuter boys in chat than Johnson. I can let him go now…maybe it’s not meant to be.
I don’t know where this is going, this online chat/Drinkchat thing. But I am sure about one thing. I don’t want my old life. I don’t want to be addicted to alcohol. I don’t want to stare at my drink instead of my date. I am fed up being lonely. I am fed up having alcohol for company. I am fed up with this life where all I do is take calls from people on the lift. I want to be out there and live.
Somebody in the party said that the opposite of addiction is not abstinence it’s connection. Well said.
The next few days, I don’t promise to be perfect. I never was, I never am, and never will be. But I will try my damn best. I want a change, don’t I? How bad do I want it? It’s not just the boys and the dating, I want to fly. I can see myself, seeing the world, going places.
I don’t want to be perfect, I want to be the best version of me.
Could you imagine, me, Venus, 30-something-year-old Venus, in a smart suit, heading to Thailand? What a day that will be. I fancy calling mum like that, from Heathrow, and asking what she wants me to bring home.
For now, I’m going to find out about re-taking the A-levels…No shame in that.