Day 169 – languid dusk and lotus notes

The moon was gorgeous tonight. Nearly full, I think. Just the slightest sliver missing from its lower left corner.

The air was unusually warm for September.

After the school run and dinner I practiced flexibility exercises, outside, thanks to inspiration from NoMoreBeer2019, a new-to-me blogger from France, now living in North America (hi again Anne!). She’s part of an alcohol-free community which “make(s) you book a physical challenge so you’re working towards a goal and have a “reason” to stay sober.” Her challenge, she’s decided, will be re-learning to do handstands. Mine, I decided, after a quick ponder in her comment section :)), will be achieving full lotus position.

I YouTubed “full-lotus” tonight and learned that it requires hip-flexibility practice more than anything. So I did the recommended stretches, out on the badminton area, while the boys hover-boarded, biked and scooted back and forth past me at high speeds.

I’ve nowhere near the flexibility required to do the full lotus, but if I practice these exercises for about 10 minutes per day, maybe by the one-year sobriety-mark I might have it.

Who knows. Not me. I’m hereby promising to do my best, one day at a time, nothing more nothing less. ;)) 🧘🏼‍♂️


Our kitchen rear wall is pale golden blue, since I painted it; it gives me great pleasure to see it every time I walk in the door from outside. The floor is worn, ages old, everyone thinks it’s diamond-pattern large tiles, but it’s actually a stamped concrete. It was like that, but all dark and soot-stained grey, when we moved in. I cleaned it and painted it alternating cream and rust-red, inspired by Monet’s kitchen. Now the rust-red has been repainted in “ocean cloud,” but still, since that last painting, completely distressed by footfall, so the rust-red also shows through in patches, as does the original dark grey concrete.

I could look at it and say it’s shabby, or I could look at it and say it’s incredibly beautiful. Time has made it so.

I sat outside, listening to — though not watching — the three younger boys play a scooting “police” game, as I sat knitting  my “serenity shawl,” as I’m now calling it; my pint of cool tap water in front of me on low glass table. I marvel at the patio, row upon row of pavers that we laid ourselves at the end of this winter.

I have to admit I felt sad. We have this huge, gorgeous patio now. All this lovely stylish lawn furniture I’ve managed to collect during bargain sales. But now that we have all this, at last, the friendships have petered out; there will be no more parties. That’s how my melancholy self sees it. I don’t have energy enough to plan parties with former drinking buddies, while sober. That’s how it feels at this point in these still-early days.

No more loud music, no more shouting with laughter, no more sound of wine or pastis being poured into glasses, no more sound of lighters striking up the ends of cigarettes, no more sound of the fire crackling, the sound of my drunken guitar playing, the sound of my friend and me singing, the sound of my husband shouting raunchy jokes and hooting with laughter with my friend’s man, no more sound of what seemed like masses of neighbourhood children all jumping together on the trampoline…

I see it all with nostalgia, that dangerous pair of rosé-coloured glasses.

But there’s a deeper story to this. The friendship was experiencing difficulties before my sobriety began. I believe that the problem was partly fuelled by alcohol. From both sides of the neighbourhood “fences.”

Sometimes, in my weaker moments, I feel like sobriety has killed my old friendships and all my wild fun. But I don’t believe that’s truly the case, when I look deeper. Any friendships that seem dimmed in the light of my sobriety must have in fact already been occluded by alcohol. Had perhaps even been fuelled, in the very first place, mostly by alcohol. And fun is now found in more serious ways. This moment, here now, is rewarding, for me.

I’m a bit down on myself, these days, because my life hasn’t suddenly become perfect. I’ve been really tired. A little lost in my sense of direction. Sometimes I feel I was higher-functioning while drinking. But I know that isn’t actually true. I was just as lost then, if not more so. Life just raced past faster, in the drinking days. And it would have raced to a sooner end as well, I’m quite sure.

I give myself the gift of time, to become truly beautiful with age. I guess I will say that I am okay as I am for now.

xoxo n/stl


17 thoughts on “Day 169 – languid dusk and lotus notes

  1. There will be new friends; like you said just give yourself the time to blossom in your sobriety. Your house sounds beautiful. I’d come over and drink carbonated water with you and your family.
    I related to what you said about alcohol starting to wear on your friendship. I think that drinking starts out fun and celebratory but over the years you get angrier and more bitter when you drink. At least all of my friends and I did. Near the end I’d just sit on Facebook until 4AM insulting all of my friends. Fun stuff.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks about the house! Ongoing 10-year DIY project, still a lot to do, and it is quite a humble home (still only two bedrooms!! 😩plus a lot of jumbled “storage” space 😊). But the location is perfect (although fairly remote), as is the outside yard. 🌿🌳🍃

      I hear you about the angry bit. That was not the case for me though. I mostly went the opposite direction with wine. 😆Telling all and sundry how much I loooooooveeeeeed them. And slbrururururings my texststssted comment replies on social media. Lol.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Ah I can relate to what you are saying so much. Good that you recognise there’s some loss, which there is when you give up something that played such a central role in our lives. BUT, there’s no reason to give up all the rest. Get that guitar out, light up the BBQ, get the friends round. Why not??? You might enjoy it all more, and believe me your guitar playing will improve playing sober. If I thought all those things were in the past I’d open up a bottle immediately but they do not have to be. When people see you enjoying yourself and still standing at the end of the evening they might also ask what’s your secret!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Jim. All true. These thoughts keep cycling for me. All part of the process I think. Have written about them here a few times before. So happy you mentioned the guitar factor, especially for any sobriety-curious musicians who might stumble across this! I’ve found that to be the case for sure. 🎸e.g.


  3. I can so relate to this – there is loss and I too have thought about the parties I won’t go to or will see differently. The last 2 weeks I’ve been quite sociable seeing friends 1 on 1 for food, theatre or a drink. It’s been lovely and not drinking has been fine. I’ve realised that for now the really booze nights aren’t for me so I’m worried I’m going to lose some friendships but time will tell – maybe you’ll find new ways to connect with your old friends or with new friends (like your picnic mom?) Agree with Jim about the guitar playing too! 💞💞

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You know, it’s so strange, after writing that, I saw an email from picnic mom, near-buried in the growing-overwhelming piles. I still have to respond! She is lovely. Anyway, you’re spot on with your suggestions. So lovely that you’ve been sociable and enjoying it! One on one is definitely easier in some ways. Ooh, theatre sounds nice. Great idea.

      I sort of feel awful about this post. I took out half of it in the end, since it carried some old resentments against others and I didn’t want to unfairly voice them. This means it’s missing the real thought-train of what happened with the terrace and why it even exists (and therefore why it is mentioned). I have a really hard time finding that balance between sharing and over-sharing (and under-sharing). I probably should not have even published it; but, #bloggingaddiction. 😉

      So happy to see you here, always, thanks for dropping by ❤️And yes, absolutely Jim’s right about the guitar playing 👌

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I know what you mean about being totally honest when it involves others – I’ve a few things I’d love to write about but I’d be encroaching onto others stories and it’s hard to know where that line is between yours and theirs – I’ve not had time to blog as loads of deadlines but hopefully soon as I’m missing it! Managing to read others though which is next best thing! 💞

        Liked by 1 person

  4. I love that you knit! I don’t know how yet, but I love to use my sewing machine and create! My favorite is taking t-shirts and making them into a square envelope type pillow cases. Then I stick a pillow form in it and the pillow case can be easily washed when needed.
    Funny thought I’d share is last night I was invited to go to a local pub to watch an upcoming band play a few hours. I know the guitarist and am excited for him. I have no problem going and not drinking alcohol and I have a sober friend I knew would be there. I turned it down because I got out of work and wanted to clean out my basement due to our local town has their last junk days this morning. 😂😂😂 I turned down actually being social to clean junk out of my basement. 🤓😂🤓 Plus-I wonder what they thought when I told them my reasoning for not coming. 😂😆😂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Aw Jackie thanks, and I love that you sew! Those t-shirt pillows sounds like they’d be super cozy. The shawl is a super simple pattern, just knit every stitch. I learned how to knit from a book but now there is youtube which makes refreshing the knowledge much easier! So grateful to the folks who publish their stuff online so others can freely learn. The Internet is an amazing place.
      Honestly I love all things textiles. My main sewing fetish is remodelling vintage clothes. I used to want to be a fashion designer.
      I SOOOOO here you on the social stuff! If I’m honest I too rather stay in most nights. I too have been on a massive declutter spree and it feels so good doesn’t it?!? Ha I love your honesty about the reasons so ultimately who cares what they think! (except us. 😉 lol!!!!) Thanks for your lovely comment 💗

      Liked by 1 person

  5. woooow ❤ Thanks for the shoutout and the beautiful post. Just as I was feeling down and lonely, your kindness proved me wrong and reminded me that there is a world full of wonderful and generous people out here, thank you. My eyes welled up in gratitude, really 🙂 Kind of like in your post, these days I am also melancholically wondering where is the joy and have I left it behind with the booze, but as you say, when we dig deeper, things become clearer. I have no doubt that if we had a party with all the people across the world who are on the same journey as us, we would have the BLAST of all times. And now I have hope again: there will be joy, plenty of it! And there probably already is right now, inside us and around us, it's just a matter of opening up to it. You really helped me today, I will remember this for a long time. Again: thank you ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Anne, I loved this comment so very much. Likewise I saw it in a very down moment, feeling terrible about this post, and about the way I was handling life in general, and so you’ve completely brightened up my corner of the blogosphere. Thank you, so very much. I love your blog and am excited for you as you begin this truly awesome journey. You remind me that it’s so much better, as we keep going along. it’s sometimes hard to see it from where we are on the path but we really are moving forward in our lives with this massive gift to ourselves of giving up a substance that was no longer serving us. So thank you thank you thank you back; you’ve made my day. ❤︎🙏❤︎🙏❤︎🙏❤︎


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