Last night I went for food with 2 old friends (they’re not old, the friendship is) to celebrate my birthday. It was a lovely night and I laughed loads, caught up with them both, asked for advice on a situation and of course managed to ram lush food into my flapjack hole. We were there till they put the chairs on the tables and started mopping up.
Now a year ago that would not have been the case. I’d have swallowed some food about 6 o’clock then arranged to meet them in the pub. I’d have started drinking at home, got smashed with them out, then invited them back to drink even more. And of course I’d have prepared for all this and made sure the fridge was stocked.
One of my big fears of not drinking was “how the holy fox spunk do you socialise without alcohol?”. I genuinely thought that nights out sans alcool would be dull, boring and bloody pointless. Turns out it’s the opposite. It was when I was pouring the poison down my Gregory Peck that it was dull, boring and bloody pointless.
The English Oxford Dictionary describes sociable as “Willing to talk and engage in activities with other people; friendly”. So it’s now that I am truly sociable. Not then. Sober I do engage, I listen, I don’t just want to get my point/joke across and I am actually way more friendly as I don’t say stupid shit I don’t mean.
Let’s be honest. When we drink we often start shouting at people or at least talking louder (and closer to peoples faces). Is that good communicating or showing good social skills? Nuh. We also can slur? Ah okay so to really get my point across I need to actually numb my senses and talk weird. Again. This is not sociable.
I am also more sociable as I no longer write the next day off. When I was drinking I would not plan anything the next day as I knew how rough I’d be. Or worse, if I had planned something that I could no longer face… I’d cancel it. Then be riddled with the Gina Guilts. What? And this is more sociable? Ummmm….no babes….its the fecking opposite.
Today I’m off for a massive walk with my family that starts off at the beach then goes up a huge mountain (please do not doubt that this also involves stopping for a big lunch where I will devour 3 courses and yes I’ve already been online and know what I’m having).Last year that would never have happened (well…the virtual ordering would have).
So today I am celebrating the fact that not my social time is sociable. I am celebrating the fact that my communication skills are the best they have even been. I am celebrating the fact that I have amazing friends who I love spending time with and who also give me their desserts they cant finish. I am celebrating sober socialising.