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Drinking Dreams: A Blessing and A Curse

Drinking Dreams: A Blessing and A Curse
Drinking Dreams: A Blessing and A Curse

Two nights ago, I had a drinking dream. This one really shook me up because it felt so real, and because I hardly ever remember my dreams. I’ve found, over the years, that these dreams can be a blessing and a curse.

I don’t remember much from my dream the other night. All I know is, when I woke up and remembered I’d had the dream, I was shaken up. Hard cider was my drink in that dream, and I couldn’t stop thinking about it. On the other hand, I’m not surprised I had that dream. I’ve been under a lot of stress lately. My anxiety/ OCD has been through the roof. And, I’ve been having thoughts about trying to drink again. Don’t worry, I have no plans whatsoever about drinking, ever again.

A Blessing In Disguise

Drinking dreams to me are a blessing in disguise. They allow me to imbibe without actually taking a drink in real life. They also show me what I would be facing if I ever decided to drink again. The fear of having to face my friends and tell them I slipped. The disappointment in myself for having to start my time over again. The importance of not putting so much emphasis on sober time, because it doesn’t matter how long I’ve been sober. And, feeling relief that I didn’t actually take a drink, my dream self did.

These are all blessings in disguise. Especially today, because I am one week away from my sober birthday. I look back at everything I’ve accomplished, and I am proud of myself. I look back at my drinking days, and I’m grateful to be sober. My drinking dream was just one more reminder of what I don’t want to go back to.

And Also A Curse…

Drinking dreams can also be a curse. Waking up the other morning, remembering my drinking dream, and feeling that terror was not fun. Thankfully I’ve been sober for long enough, I’m used to these dreams. But, what about the early days? That, for me, is where the curse comes into play.

I remember almost every detail of my drinking dreams over the years, only because they’ve been few and far between. But one dream stands out the most for me. I was only about a month sober, I think, and I didn’t recall this particular dream when I woke up. I don’t remember which dream it was now, only that I drank.

I was at work, walking past the shelves in our back room where the liquor vendors hold their back stock of beer and hard liquor. All the sudden the memory came to the surface and slammed into me. The memory flooded in, and I got scared. The thought that immediately came to me was, “did I really drink, or was it just a dream?” I was shaken up for the rest of the day. Logically I knew that I did not take a drink. But, being newly sober, I didn’t have the tools yet to effectively fight off the panic and fear that that dream brought on.

Take It With A Grain of Salt

If you’re newly sober, and you’ve experienced a drinking dream, take it with a grain of salt. These dreams can be terrifying, or they can be a reminder. When we dream, our subconscious is working through the things our conscious mind cannot face head on. Drinking dreams are your brain’s way of processing the fact that you are no longer drinking. Changing a long-term habit, like drinking, is heavy and will take time to get used to.

However, you don’t have to face the terror that drinking dreams stir up alone. I’ve found talking about my drinking dreams helps a lot. Telling someone about the fear I felt when I thought I had drank lessened the power of the dream. Suddenly, I wasn’t facing this fear alone. And, chances are good that the person you tell about your dream has had one too. They can share their dream with you, and you’ll know you’re not alone.

Today, I’ll take a drinking dream over real drinking any day.

Sweet dreams,

Mindy

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2 Comments
  • mike says:

    Hi Mindy
    Happy anniversary for this week.

    I occassionally will be day dreaming about my sobriety, and think “When are you going to ‘fess up about your bust and be real”!

    This is related to my Fraud Syndrome.

    I’m ten in March and never want a drink anymore but my mind is still a dangerous place.

    Thank you for your words.

    Love alwaz

    Mike

  • Mindy F. says:

    Thank you Mike! And yes, I understand the Fraud Syndrome all too well, ha! I would like to think that thinking goes away with time, but I’m afraid it won’t. But, it definitely keeps us on our toes!

    Thank you so much for reading!

    Mindy

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