Mama Mayhem

Going dry for July? I’ll cheers to that!

By Ivy Jensen

WHAT was I thinking?

This is a question I ask myself a lot.

Indeed, increasingly since last week, when I decided to take part in Dry July.

Meaning I have been stone cold sober for six days.

That’s right; dry as a Mount Isa summer, straight as an arrow, sober as teetotaler, off the wagon – for almost a week.

Now while that’s an achievement in itself, I’ve got another three-and-a-half weeks of no bubbly, gin and tonic or Mama’s magic maroon medicine.

Now don’t get me wrong. I’m pretty sure I’m no alcoholic.

But what is an alcoholic?

Someone who drinks every day?

A lot of people do.

A glass of wine with dinner.

Does that make them compulsive drinkers?

Is that worse than a binge drinker who gets wasted every weekend?

So I Googled it.

And found alcoholism is described as the “inability to control drinking due to both a physical and emotional dependence on alcohol”.

Now while that does not describe me, I have come to realise that my drinking habits are probably not good.

I come from the ‘work hard, play harder’ generation.

We would bust our butts for 8-10 hours a day and our just reward for a ‘hard day’s work’ was a drink or two come knock-off.

Anything was cause for a celebration – from birthdays, pregnancies and promotions to making it through a gruelling Monday and 5pm Friday.

Anything negative was cause to drown our sorrows – from deaths and funerals to staff leaving; even a hard day at the office would do at a pinch.

But of course, I would choose to do it in the middle of a pandemic – just when Victoria looks like getting a second wave and everyone’s stress levels are once again heading north.

Which brings us right back to my first point – what was I thinking?

Or rather, should the question be ‘do I ever stop to think?’

Well, let me think about that for the next few weeks. Which shouldn’t be a problem because I will have a very clear mind, 24/7, to give it some deep and meaningful consideration.

Of course, I have something of a connection with the driving force behind Dry In July – as a cancer survivor I am happy (well, pretty happy) to support initiatives such as this.

And it will give me something to celebrate at the stroke of midnight on July 31 (what’s wrong with Dry in February and it’s 28 days?).

Probably with a glass of Perrier instead of just run-of-the-mill Echuca tap water.

But I digress.

Some of my friends said they would do it with me, and once I committed and signed the pledge, they fell about laughing and said they weren’t being serious – and couldn’t believe I was.

Yeah, good joke girls. Ha, hardy, ha.

Ha, ha, ha.

Stop it Ivy, you’re starting to sound a little hysterical.

Remember, you are the one holding the high moral ground here.

Don’t think about marking every day as a notch in the kitchen doorframe, just keep your head down and get on with the important things in life.

And the example you are setting for those near and dear to you.

So here I am, it’s day six of the rest of my life. That’s just 25 more sleeps.

And I thought giving up chocolate for Lent was hard.

So folks, please be upstanding, charge your glasses (but not mine) and join me in a toast to Dry In July: Here’s cheers to that.

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