To Be or Not To Be…

One of the biggest differences between being fat and being a drunk is that one of them is impossible to hide! I can’t pretend I’m not fat. On the other hand, it was easy to pretend I wasn’t a drunkard! The fat is obvious, the drinking – not so much.

Anyone that looks at me can tell that I could benefit from losing some weight. And it’s not just for the purpose of looks anymore. Nope! I am at the age now, that I need to lose weight for my health. And during the Pandemic, I have noticed this even more as I sit at home ALL OF THE TIME! I really struggle because I am dealing with some medical issues that are caused or aggravated by being obese. You would think that would be a huge motivation to do whatever I have to do in order to lose weight. But remember, I have been fat and lazy my entire adult life. It’s hard to change those bad habits.

The cool thing about being fat, is when you do lose weight, you get all the kudos from people. Everyone loves to hear, “You look great!” “Have you lost weight?” “Nice job on the weight loss!” “Wow, what is your secret – you are looking fabulous!” Even at Weight Watchers we celebrate every pound we lose. It’s fun getting recognized for all the work you do which is signified by your shrinking body.

This is one aspect I miss about getting Sober. There are not a lot of kudos coming my way because, the truth is, most of the people I am close to had no idea I “drank to much.” I was very good at hiding it. When people saw me drinking it was in situations where it was “okay” to be drinking and no one was measuring or keeping track of how much I was drinking. When it wasn’t a situation like that, well, chances are the people around me had no idea that there was vodka in my crystal light! While I put a ton of work into quitting drinking and I am working internally every day to stay sober, no one really knows. The good thing is I have a fabulous sister who supports me (she knows all!) and the wonderful women in my sober club that I can go to when I need that extra boost. But, the people I am closest too have no idea, because 98% of them have no idea drinking was an issue to start with.

I have been thinking about this a lot lately. I’m not saying I want recognition for getting sober. What I want is to tell the people I am closest too. But in doing so, I have to admit I was a drunk in the first place. They all know I’m fat and when I lose a bit of weight, they notice. If I tell them I am sober, suddenly being a drunkard becomes the issue. When you lose weight, the focus is on the loss and how well you are doing. When someone quits drinking, the focus is on the fact that they had to quit drinking in the first place. We don’t honor it the same way we honor the weight loss. And honestly, we should honor it even more.

So, I sit and wonder often; how do I share my success with the people I care about the most, without bringing into focus the struggle that brought me here? While I grapple openly with my weight, one of the biggest accomplishments of my life is hidden away. At some point, for my sanity, I must reconcile this. Until then, I will continue to question and try to figure it out.

Always, Ms. K

5 thoughts on “To Be or Not To Be…

  1. Yes, I feel this 100%!! I have struggled with weight and alcohol addiction my whole adult life, but the weight issues have always been on display. No one ever seemed to notice my drinking even though it was ruining my life, and now that I’m almost 6 months sober, which I feel is a much bigger accomplishment than any amount of weight loss I’ve achieved, I haven’t shared that with anyone except my husband and parents. It seems weird, like I should want to share it openly, but I feel so much shame for ever having the problem in the first place that I don’t even want people to known about this milestone in my recovery. Not sure what to do about that either!

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    1. Exactly! Part of me wants to scream it from the rafters, but then that i admitting I had this big issue that was also a big secret! It is a double edged sword! Congrats on your six months! Today is day 157 for me…not quite the 6 month spot yet, but I am getting there! At least we have others like us to talk to and support us, even if we can’t quite share with those closest to us…at least not yet!

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  2. Ms. K, I am still fighting moderation mary but it is like day 16 now. I have not had weight issues but since quitting drinking I have started comfort eating and gained a few pounds. It is difficult too as we are coached to tackle one issue at a time. There are so many reasons we can give for why we quit drinking. My favorite is “I am pre-diabetic and was told by my doctor to stop.” Which is no lie. Or”It just makes me terribly ill now.” But I understand the dilemma bigtime.”It does awful things to my skin” is another good one. I am working towards a more plant based diet but that will be challenging. I get it Ms. K.

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