Feeling Lean and Mean

My hubby and I went to our weekly workout with our personal trainer, Jack.  We’ve been with him for about 7 years now.  He’s an awesome trainer and has become a good friend.  Today he became a better friend when he looked me over and complimented me on my lean physique.  He mentioned that. along with our workout, my twice-per-week pilates is really showing and he’s so proud of me!  Also complimented me on my new, short and sassy haircut.  I can always count on Jack to notice when I’ve changed the color or cut of my hair (which I do quite often).  That is usually how my husband finds out I’ve had a change in style – when he hears Jack mention it!   Well, anyway, I strutted out of the gym like a peacock this morning, flexing my 61 year-old self.  Retirement has allowed me the time to take brisk walks in the morning, hike up and down my staircase several times a day, practice pilates twice per week, and look longingly at a dusty bowflex machine upstairs.  I do need to dust that thing off – and maybe pull on a couple of bars.  It’s just a matter of getting started – like anything, getting started is the hard part right?  Getting started requires a plan.  Setting a date on the calendar.  Promising yourself to give it a try.  And once you try it – you might really like it!

Where Are All the Happy Sober Women?

Well, I was reading Drunky Drunk’s post this morning about complainers and it reminded me of the women’s only AA meeting I attended last night. A series of rambling complaints about life, family, and circumstances. These are sober women who just can’t let it go. Doesn’t matter what the topic of the night is – they will find a way to connect it to some horrible in-law that they have issues with it. I’ve been trying different groups on different nights and come away each time feeling worse than when I arrived. Perhaps my expectations are unreasonable. Perhaps I’m looking for an uplifting, smiling bunch that are so thrilled that they’ve given up the poison that they can’t wait to share their pink clouds with anyone new coming in. These aren’t newbies. These are women with 10+ years in. They’ve been dumping their family business in these meetings for years and years! They sound so bitter.  But yet, when a brand new frightened alcoholic enters the room, they wrap their arms around her and spill all their words of encouragement.  How AA helped them…how there lives are so much better now that they’ve become sober.

Last night’s moderator pointed to each of us around the table to talk – rather than allowing volunteers to speak up.  So, at my turn, I had nothing to say about the topic (which I don’t recall), so I just told everyone how happy I was to be sober and how well I had maintained my new life!  Yeah whatever…on to the next bitchy mother-in-law story.

I guess I keep going to meetings hoping to find live sober people that are similar to all of YOU out there in my sober cyber world. You are all so excited and positive as you attempt to maintain (along with your struggles) this new and exciting lifestyle. Occasionally, when one of you falls down – the rest of us run to your rescue. It is such a wonderful community. Are there live meetings like this out there? Actually – there is one I know of. Josie at THEMIRACLEISAROUNDTHECORNER sounds like she runs that type of positive meeting. Yes, I hear all of you out there thinking perhaps I should start my own meeting. But all I really want to do is hang out with some like-minded ladies who have made the decision to stop drinking…ladies like me.

Time…Precious Time

It’s true what they say. Our days are filled during retirement – more than our working days. My days are filled with adventures, hobbies, friends, and books. Things I could have done while I was working, but instead chose to sit on the couch in front of the tv with a (or three) glass of wine. Now I seldom notice the difference in time between 2 o’clock and 6 o’clock. The entire day is mine for the taking. It’s a wonderful thing that I have earned after 45 years in the workplace. But it wouldn’t be this glorious had I still been drinking.

Yesterday my eldest daughter, a single mom living 12 hours away, called with hysteria in her voice to tell us about her flooded basement. “What do I do??” she exclaimed. I felt this tug in my gut to pack my bags and get in the car to drive to her rescue. I can do that now, without worry about an employer’s schedule. Her dad calmly walked her through the procedure to check the sump pump and she was able to pull herself together. Crisis avoided. I put my suitcase away. But it was a good feeling to know I could rescue her if necessary.

I’ve had hair appointments, dental cleanings, and the cable guy all in the middle of the day. Lovely.

I’m convinced that I would not be enjoying this half as much if I were drinking. I’m sure that bottle would be calling me around 2 pm instead of 5. I would be unable to make any decisions, let alone jumping in the car to rescue my daughter. I would be hiding the wineglass when the cable guy showed up at 3:30. The stress of managing to buy wine on my limited retirement budget would take the fun out of party. There would be no adventures, friends, or books. Just a longer period of time in front of the TV.

I thank God for Time…Precious Time Without Alcohol in my life.