Sunday, 30 November 2014

The Hunger

It's still there like a sallow wolf, circling my existence. And, with it, the hunger. I'd hoped its clawing tones might leave my ears soon, but its still here. The hunger. I rest, nestled in the safety of the car, speeding through the dark autumnal night air. The trees becoming bare, stark whispers of winter's coming, whilst all around, in this darkness, the hunger surrounds me. 

Where can we buy it? 
When can we drink it? 
When will we be free to envelope ourselves in its liquid release?
Have some at the party? No? Have some ready for private, as a prize for staying sober all night.

The hunger is still here, prickling in my mind, drizzling, cold, full of dread. I'm trying not to listen. But, its here.

And, no more so than this weekend, we're heading to a party, I'm unconfident, I'm out of my comfort zone. My thoughts are preoccupied with the selfish calls of my wine wolf. I'm not sure why. I'm within the safety of my husbands reach, aside the nip of the night air, I'm warm and yet it doesn't stop. This hunger, so seeping, it feels like its dragging my feet downwards into the mist. A few days have passed without the cruel call of this beast. Not tonight. Tonight, I feel its breath on my naked neck. I pull my scarf tighter.

We arrive at the party laden with food and drinks, kisses for the hosts, invited into their home. A little late, but no shame in that. Our plate put on the already laden table. I bring homemade sushi, keeping my fingers and my mind busy earlier. The atmosphere is warm and inviting. The tinkle of glasses, the long elegant stems of sparkling bubbles whisper my name. The wolf is near here, I settle myself at the furthest corner of his den. I find my own corner.

I eat well, I refill my plate and my glass myself. I'm mindful of the chatter around me and engage in conversations as the wolf circles round the room, then back to his layer. Our eyes meet. He's clever this one, but I'm ready. I keep my guard, recharge my glass myself. I eat some more. The hunger abates for a while.

He's clever this one, a malt whisky is let out of its cage. The honey coloured liquid dancing in the crystal glasses, the vapour sneaks around the room like a cheeky imp, smokey and heathery. An old friend, glinting in the half light. The wolf comes to me, calling my name he seeps from the glass, 'You're hungry' he whispers. I know. I'm busy. I need to escape.

I walk through to the kitchen, brandishing a cloth I polish the plates. Wiping each dripping plate until its clean and dry. Over and over, I ignore the wolf.  The laughter gets louder, the music thumping. Its a quarter to ten. Fifteen more minutes. until its safe. Finally time to go.

We leave early, hearty goodbyes, we leave the party in full throws. Wolfie in full voice. Tired we slip through misty streets, all the shops closed. The Wolf's work is done for the day out here. He's locked in houses throughout the lands, keeping his lair warm for those who don't know of his cruel ways.

I relax in the car. The wolf behind me, shops closed, nowhere left to buy wine on the way home. I patiently bide my time.  The hunger is still with me, sadly. This hunger for wine, for drinking, for booze is still here. Some days it shouts more than it should a fierce wolf. Some day's its quieter, more like a mouse. I don't miss hearing it, I hate its clawing calls, I just wish it would abate, for now.

So the hunger is still so fierce. I'm glad its not here howling, the whole time, but he's near and he's watching for me to be weak.

I pull my scarf tighter, I hold my husbands hand. I'm still sober. The hunger didn't get me tonight. I'm using skills learned from you all to feed myself, distract myself, distance myself, keep busy. Arrive late, and leave early. My first proper social gathering of friends, a house party. I still (stupidly) have this hunger for alcohol. I'm thankful of the skills I've newly learnt to sidestep the wolf and the hunger.

I awake today, reflective. I'm not paranoid, wondering how much I drank or what I said. I'm just reflective that after this short time, I'm able to hide from my wolf. My old familiar.

This is new. Its hard, but its new. 57 days, newly sober. I'm alive. And I'm watchful of the wolf I know circling around, watching from afar, waiting for me to stumble.

For your help, your strategies, your advice. 
I thank you. 
I'm grateful I'm not alone with him. 
Or with the hunger.


  1. You are definitely not alone.
    That was a moving post. Your words do clearly bring to life that seductive lure.
    You did the right thing. Sometimes you need to hide and go home and stay safe.

    1. Thank you Anne, hiding, going home, staying safe is all good. What I really don't miss nor want to feel again is that hunger I've always had sat in the car on my way somewhere. Probably not really wanting to drink in front of folks but sitting in garages/outside shops waiting to buy some wine for later. Or buying enough for the party and enough for later. Or sitting at the forecourt wondering when I can have my next drink, when we can get home, when I can start. That incessant hunger I really want shot of. Its never enough, never ever.

  2. Daisy, Congratulations on beating of the wolf, once again.
    Each time you fight him off, you get stronger. You will be rewarded with more stamina for the next time he comes around.
    Thank you so much for sharing your journey with us.
    I am at the beginning of yet another quit (day 4) and I find great strength and wisdom in your blog. You are helping me immensely with your attitude, your written words and photographs. I am very proud of you, Daisy. Keep up the great work. It is worth it!


    1. Hope huge hugs to you day 4 wow well done you! Its hard at the start and a bumpy road. I hope you're treating yourself kindly? I quit so many times before I got to here so well done really, well done. Thank you for the compliments, today, a boring normal day, and yet I thought about wine a billion times. Some days are easier than others. I'm glad you like the words and the photos, really helping me to focus. Do you have a blog or do you think you might benefit from starting one? Hugs and plenty of them.


    2. Thank you, so much, Daisy. I have been struggling today, but your reply strengthened me. I do not have a blog and don't really know how to start one. For now, I will just learn from others. Thanks again for all your help. You are doing all the right things, Daisy.


  3. What a beautiful post Daisy. The hunger and his calling does ease I promise - I hardly ever hear him now Lucy xx

    1. I know you don't lie, so I hope this eases soon. Its torture. But, I'm sure what you say is true! I look forward to it.x

  4. It happens. I mean, there is always a degree of adjustment phase when it comes to sobriety. However, once we go through it, it can only guide us into the better, or at least to a more invigorated place of being, with the mental poisons of alcohol right out of our system. Anyway, thanks for being brave to share that! All the best to you!

    Donnie Benson @ Midwest Institute for Addiction

    1. Thank you for your kind words, I really appreciate them.