By Tanya Hazelwood
I recently attended a fun little event at the very club I’ve written about being thrown out of several times. I was of course nervous, not because of being scared of being thrown out again, or what the owner would think of me. The owner and I are cool. We are still friends. I was nervous because they were of course serving alcohol and there was nothing stopping me from drinking. I knew without a doubt that they would have served me anything I wanted. When I walked in the door the bouncer, who has physically thrown my out a few times, looked at me with wonderment. As if to say “oh, no, here we go” I told him the owner was expecting me and he asked for my name. I was bewildered. “How do you not know MY name?” I asked him. “I’ve never known your name” he said, “I’ve always just known you as troublemaker.”
I know he meant no harm with his words and I pretended to laugh it off, but the fact is, it cut me to the bone. How embarrassing to have people only know me as a trouble maker. I told him of my sobriety and about the column and all the good things I have been doing. Not sure he actually believed me at first. I tried to avoid even being near the bar. Just being in that place made it so hard for me to not drink. I sucked it up however. At one point I came from the bathroom which is beside the bar. They lady bartender was telling me about when they were open and I should come party, etc. I spoke up and said “Not me, I don’t drink anymore, six months sober.” Then to my surprise the bouncer stopped what he was doing and said “ya know what, I am really proud of you.” I saw the sincerity in his face.
Maybe it was a little more of “good I don’t have to deal with her crazy butt anymore” look, but it made me feel good. The lady bartender made a comment about how she had seen me out drinking in the past, not sure if she was a true believer of my sobriety, but that’s OK. I realize I still have a lot of proving to do to a lot of people. I am still a greenhorn at this sobriety thing, by no means an expert. I made it through the night and drank my ice water and had a blast. I’ve always been an outgoing person, but that night showed me that I could be just as wild, crazy and fun as I ever was drunk. But, this time, I could go to bed and remember everything, not wake up and apologize to anyone and didn’t spend $100 on booze. What a win for this girl!! I think I fight my battle on a daily basis. It’s more a battle within my head but I try hard to occupy my thinking so that the want to drink is pushed way back to the darkest corner of my brain. Still a long road, still have a lot of work to do but it’s one step at a time, isn’t it?