Sober Bartender

That is what I am now. I used to be a Functioning Alcoholic who tended bar to keep up her habit. I won’t lie, trying to get sober and still bartending isn’t the easiest, but it also brings on a challenge. A challenge that I am eagerly ready to take on. I haven’t gone in announcing it to all of my guests or anything, but I have made my co-workers aware. These past couple of days have been very emotionally draining and some what physically. I have been so irritable and the sight of something going wrong works my nerve; a part of detoxing I wasn’t prepared for. I am just ready to get past this part.

Last week, my first week of sobriety, wasn’t so bad. I was freshly motivated, so confident and excited in my decision, I was ready to tell everyone. It made me think, “Hey, bartending and being sober won’t be that hard!” I vowed to myself that I would no longer taste test any of the drinks or any of the new products we got in. I wouldn’t even allow myself to smell Jameson. One drop on my tongue or one whiff of Jamo and I would be right back to drinking. In the past, anytime I had “quit” for a period of time, I never gave up taste test or shift shots (trying new bottles etc). I did not dare to flirt with that temptation this go-around. I pushed through the week and made it out successful!

This week is another story. Yesterday and today I have cried the whole way to work. Why? I have no clue. Yesterday, I heard a song and it hit close to home and that opened the flood gates. Today, no clue why I cried. I am feeling just down, not happy, not excited about anything, just down. I had yet to pour one drop of Jameson for a guest since getting sober and today that changed. The moment that this man asked for a Jameson neat, my heart started racing and I perked up and said “YEA! Of course you can.” I might have perked up just a little too much. While pouring it, I could just smell the whiskey and it smelt so good. I hated that felt that way and wanted it so badly. I had to remind myself that it is only day 9 and it is okay to feel that way, just don’t give into the temptation. “Be stronger than the addiction, Be stronger than the addiction.” I repeated it for the rest of my shift today.

Soon as I was going to clock out, my phone buzzed. I had received a text from a great guy friend of mine who decided to get sober a little over a month ago asking if I wanted to grab a bite after work. I was so relieved he had text me. The last thing I needed or wanted, was to go home to an empty house with just me and my thoughts. Over sushi I learned today was day 40 for him, and not only did he decide to get sober from alcohol, but he also got sober from pills as well. He was 40 days sober from it all! I was so proud of him and it gave me a new ray of hope. We talked for what seemed like hours about recovery, AA, relapsing, and how to function being a sober bartender.

One thing I have come to notice, becoming sober is most definitely a life style change, mentally and physically. All I can do is take one day at a time and one problem or challenge at a time.

There are a lot more people out there sober and a lot more people out there struggling with addiction. WE ARE NOT ALONE IN THIS FIGHT.

I am surrounding myself with supportive family and friends and doing my best to stay away from my “drinking buddies”. At least for now until I can comfortably go and not have the temptation screaming in my face.

Do not be ashamed. Don’t be ashamed of yourself, don’t be ashamed in front of others either. You are doing something about it! If you are a recovering addict of any sort, tell your story. Talk about it. Its working for me so far!

And last but not least, I am learning who I really am all over again. Or maybe even for the first time, since the old me was always drinking to cope. ❤

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