Not too long ago, I set up for myself a little challenge. I wanted to see if I could refrain from consuming alcoholic beverages for 15 days. Now before you start jumping to all sorts of conclusions, I must first clarify that I don’t have any sort of serious issues with drinking! Nor do I consider my evening glass of wine a vice. I just had a few reasons for wanting to discover possible benefits of doing without for a set time frame (they are listed below).
So more than a week goes by, tra la la, life is good. All was going well and I didn’t feel too much of a withdrawal while I was refraining. Until…
A weekend birthday party (and for a toddler at that!!) put me right in the line of fire with major temptation!!
There were beverage choices galore and the lusting/longing (both words apply here…) for a lager was almost overwhelming. Because there were many brands and names that I had never heard of before, I was doing some extreme scrutinizing of those sipping merrily from their bottles. I wanted to know what they were enjoying and take some mental notes for when I could indulge again. But the next day, I was troubled that I might have given false impressions to those who were victim of my most severe stares. Apologies were made and I pleaded for pardon, as I confessed not as one who judges, but as one who suffers from another transgression: jealousy. I needed them to be assured that it was not convicting eyeballing that caused me to look their way, but rather curious envy.
And on that note, I am concluding that this little “no drinking challenge” with the goal of possible benefit has, on the contrary, done me (and as it appears, others too) more harm than good. Friends that didn’t know I drink had to endure and wonder what my glaring was all about. I had to put my first $1 in “mommy’s yelling jar” after making it two whole months without any uncontrollable hollering (is there a correlation between not drinking wine and acting like a crazy mom? Perhaps…). I still wake up restless in the middle of the night (I had always concluded being wide-eyed at 1 am was from wine intake. Guess not). But the biggest letdown was in regards to my main reason for the challenge. Knowing that wine and beer have lots of calories, I was really hoping to see some improvements in weight and appearance by foregoing a couple hundred calories a day. Nothing happened. The scale still spins to the same number, my jeans remain a little snug, and my meaty, bulky looking right arm is still seriously disproportionate with the rest of my small scrawny bone frame. You see, I had heard of “beer belly” where folks just gain a larger middle in their abdomen area from drinking; so I had this idea that maybe I suffered from a rare case of “wine arm” and that a lack of wine would remove the extra bulk from my right arm leaving in its stead a sinewy slender limb. Not so!
Oh well, if anything, I have learned for certain that sipping on my evening glass of wine and enjoying beers on the weekend (all in moderation, of course) have no negative consequences. And April 1st (my target date), I can say “cheers” again with a glass in hand!