213 Days

I am standing at the end of a table. I’m surrounded by people I have met but do not know. They are socializing with each other, sipping on wine or scotch and I stand alone, club soda in hand, smiling.

There are moments in life when I come into my body. My head comes out of the clouds, out of its busy thinking and I am fully alert and aware of the situation I am in. People around the world strive for this kind of awareness. I too have taken classes on it, and it isn’t easy. But every once in a while it just happens, without meditation, without effort and without struggle.

This is what’s happening at the end of the table. At a business function flowing with cocktails and wine, the air is thick with pretension and arrogance, and I am calm. I am calm and content and have no insecurities. I don’t feel awkward or ashamed, embarrassed or stuttery; instead I feel confident in my own skin. Alcohol plays no part in my new-found comfort. And just now I realize all these years of drinking to be comfortable actually caused more discomfort and embarrassment. I just wasn’t aware until I awoke.
I am sober. I am confident. And for the first time, I am comfortable.

7 months

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