My last drunk.


Drunk debris ©2009 all rights reservedA little more than a year ago, I got drunk for the last time.

I didn’t know it was going to be the last time – not that it would have made any difference. I mean, I don’t think I would have drank more or in a different manner or have chosen a different venue or beverage, had I known it was going to be my last binge. At least…I don’t think so.

Now, it wasn’t my last time drinking, but it was my last episode of binging. I was at the final day of a weekend-long music festival, and my drink of choice was wine sold in opaque plastic bottles. (I avoided beer, as it would have induced too many trips to the less-than-antiseptic porta potties.) Most people would make one of those bottles of wine – which holds about four glasses – last a few hours. Mine lasted an hour. And I had more than one.

B. and I skipped the big festival finale to avoid traffic, and we were back at my place in time to catch “Mad Men.” However, I didn’t see much of it, as I passed out. Or, as I claimed defensively when B. mentioned it the next day, “I fell asleep.”

I can’t recall exactly how our conversation went, but I’m sure there was discussion about how many times before this I had said I was going to modify and moderate my drinking, and how I had failed to do so each and every one of those times.

As discussions go, I don’t remember it being particularly bad or upsetting. And as drunks go, this incident was barely a blip in my alcoholic career. And yet, that night was the straw that broke the camel’s back.

I think it was just that we’d had that same conversation time and time again. And I’d felt that same resulting hangover, and same regret, and same sense of wasted opportunity, over and over again. I kept doing the same thing repeatedly – so why would I expect anything different to occur?

I’m far too familiar with Rita Mae Brown’s definition of insanity.

Something had to give.

So I resolved to stop drinking. And I resolved to go to AA.

It took about two weeks to enact both resolutions, but I finally did it.

I had my last alcoholic drink, a glass of wine, on October 15, 2008.

I went to an Alcoholics Anonymous meeting on October 17, 2008.

And on this Friday, October 16, 2009, I will celebrate one year of sobriety — amassed one second, one minute, one hour and one day at a time.

Life is good.


14 Responses to “My last drunk.”

  1. I consider myself fortunate to have been here to follow your recovery. An early congratulations to you on time well spent. You go girl!

  2. yaaaaaaaay well done girleee
    long may it continue, a day at at time 🙂

  3. 3 a friend


  4. 4 Mary W

    An early congratulations on staying sober a day at a time.
    Learn and grow.


  5. 5 Molly

    I like this post because it shows that you don’t have to have some dramatic “hitting bottom” story to get sober. You just have to realize that whatever you are doing is not working. I realized a while ago, but it took several different times quitting to find an approach that works… White knuckling it, and saying that I will only be sober for 30, 60, 90 days, didn’t work. Just waking up and saying, no more today, REALLY didn’t work. What worked for me (so far) is to use the slogan NOT ONE DRINK EVER. And if I start telling myself, just one, just this time, just repeat. NOT ONE DRINK EVER. It’s worked for me for FIVE whole days! ha ha. Reading these blogs helps too.

  6. Happy Birthday, my friend!

  7. Remember when I ran into you at Whole Foods and you told me you’d quit drinking and tears shot out of my eyes?

    That just happened again when I read this post.

    So, so proud of you my friend. Happy First Anniversary!

  8. So impressed by people who can win this battle. My higher power gave me the “brains” to realize that I DO have an addictive personality and I was always afraid to “LIKE” something too much that I would overdo it. Thus, I don’t drink and have never done drugs. Not even a fake inhale. I was scared I’d like it! My vice? Scratch-off lotto tickets. And if I lived close to a hardrock casino – I’d need some help staying away! Even the scratch-off’s are like $20.00 at the MOST a week, but it is a BAD wont. Anyway – congrats to you, Tall Karen. I look forward to following your blogs.

  9. Congratulations!! I am so glad to have randomly happen unto this blog one year ago. It has been an amazing journey to follow and watch. Thank you for all of your posts and heartfelt words throughout.

    May you continue to prosper.

  10. 10 Sharon


    I have your blog bookmarked because I have enjoyed your journey. So much of what you have said, resonated for me 🙂

  11. 11 Jakob

    I enjoy your blog very much. You have a great way of writing and to are so positive. I really gives me hope. I am still drinking and it’s impacting my life, holding me back. I hope one day I will have the courage to move on and life my life to the full, without alcohol. Keep up the posts it’s a life line 🙂

  12. Happy Birthday! What a miracle to see one grow and follow God’s path for an entire year! There is much to celebrate on this path of recovery…and 1 year is a highlight! Thanks for sharing your journey and hope! God bless you as you continue to grow…well into your 2nd year!

  13. 13 C

    Thank you all for your comments and support. Thanks for coming along for the ride. It means the world to me. xo

  14. 14 C

    Reblogged this on A passion for jaywalking and commented:

    Tomorrow, on October 16, 2012, I will celebrate four years of sobriety. I was reminded of my “last drunk” this weekend, when I attended the same music festival that sparked my very last drinking binge. This year, as for the past three years, I was able to enjoy that festival fully sober and hangover-free. And what a gift that is. Here’s to another year sober — achieved one day at a time.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: