Many of you know, I had my first sober beach vacation this month! I was really worried about the trip. I wasn’t so much worried about being triggered or wanting to drink, but more so about if I’d actually like the setting now that I don’t drink. In some ways, it’s been 8 months of learning what the hell it is that I like to do. See, in my old life, I spent a lot of time sitting around, not doing much… except drinking. I mostly drank at home, alone, watching tv and movies (all shows I can’t remember the end of, by the way). As a constant planner/worrier – this is what plagued me up until the trip:
Will I be bored sitting around completely present with nothing to do? Will the vacation, that me and hubby have grown to love, be yet another thing that has to change because of my sobriety? Will I even like going to this place now that I am able to remember it all?
Once I got to the destination, though, I was just as happy as I’ve always been there. Part of the reason this trip was so easy to do sober is because I really planned my ass off beforehand, and part of it is because the place is absolute paradise! Now, for me, there’s a fine line between overthinking and being prepared, but I have learned that preparation before “firsts” really goes a long way. I am also so grateful for my support groups and husband for always having my back through this all!
So what did I learn about sober vacation? I learned that the salty air still smells salty …that the hot sun still feels amazing…that the sounds of the ocean are still relaxing…that there are A LOT of delicious drinks that don’t contain alcohol…that conversations are actually more meaningful when you remember what you’re saying…that waking up and watching the sunrise feels a hell of a lot better without a hangover…that things cost a ton less when you’re not buying mixed drinks…that there is SO MUCH MORE TIME when you’re not wasting half of it taking drunk naps…and that I might actually like to be a little more active when I vacation now!
All in all – the vacation was a huge success! I was prepared, had great support, enjoyed everything I always enjoyed before – but even more so because I was completely able to appreciate it.