I am almost 40 days in to my 365 day challenge and I have officially checked off my first full month on my habit tracker! I am definitely focused and still set on reaching my goal.
In almost 40 days I sure have had a lot of FIRSTS without alcohol...
First family party
First dinner party
First holidays (Mother's Day & Memorial Day)
First teacher/School Walk-Out-protest
First date night
First end of the school year craziness
First social event out with a friend
First pool party
These were all events that initially made me a little worried that I would miss alcohol or that I would feel like I was deprived somehow if I didn't drink. Thankfully, I don't miss it too much. EXCEPT there was one day- Memorial Day. Rick and I were hanging out by the pool with the kids and my mom. This was my first official pool day enjoying our newly remodeled pool and backyard. It was warm, sunny, we had music going and we were smoking a beef tenderloin on the big green egg. This seemed like the perfect time to enjoy one of my favorite red beer chiladas. It was warm enough that I actually got in the water and we have a drink table that is built into the pool. This is a perfect spot for margaritas and beer cans. I was tempted. We didn't drink and had juice mocktails instead but we definitely talked openly about how we wanted to, especially since were were also struggling with something else that day.
Our kids were driving us completely nuts on Memorial Day. We were supposed to be enjoying the pool but all we heard was our girls constantly fighting over rafts, getting in each others way, splashing each other, watching them purposely annoy one another, and asking us nine million times to watch them jump, or judge their pool dance moves. If I had to listen to the word "STOP" one more time I was going to lose it. Rick and I talked about how we think alcohol makes us more patient with our kids. I do think there is truth to the idea that alcohol can reduce stress because it is a sedative and a depressant that affects the central nervous system. I think this stress reduction happens only if you are drinking in moderation and it can mimic the effect of anti anxiety medications. That sounds like a really good thing and I think there were many times we popped a beer to cope with the stress of our fighting children. However, I also think we started to rely more and more on this occasional unwinding which ultimately was leading to a built up tolerance to the de-stressing effects. We determined that for us in addition to the central nervous system effects, alcohol provided us a distraction from the kids which in turn made it seem like we were more patient. So we decided that in times like this we will need to come up with new distractions when we are hanging by the pool such as playing cards. I think we will need to keep working on that one a bit more and come up with a few new distractions.