I’ve heard alcohol is a depressant. I didn’t think I was having enough to truly have that kind of effect. Yet I was and it did. I grew up being told it was “wrong.” It was one of those “because I said so” rules that are so very frustrating. Now, instead of a rule, it’s a choice.
Have you ever bucked against a rule only to discover you’re happy to embrace it? I have – and in this week’s episode of Breathe In, Breathe Out, I share my experience of giving up alcohol and how my community has responded.
Think meditation is hard? Do me a favor, take a slow deep breath in and now breathe out. Congratulations, you just meditated. Hi, I’m Krystal Jakosky, and this is Breathe In, Breathe Out: a Weekly Mindfulness and Meditation podcast for anyone ready to own their own shit and find a little peace while doing it.
Welcome back to Breathe In. Breathe out. I am your host Krystal Jakosky and I love that you’re here. I love that I’m here. I love that I get to do this. So not too long ago, we released a newsletter that got a lot of response and because it got so much response, we thought that we would go ahead and kind of go over the concept here on the podcast as well, so that you guys, my listeners can jump in on the topic. Ellen Degeneres, a while back, had a lady on her show and her name was Gladys and she was from Austin. Gladys became a worldwide sensation when she said to Ellen, I’ll be honest with you. Yeah, I love Jesus, but I drank
You have a minute. Look it up. It’s guaranteed to brighten your day. It was just adorable and made us all laugh. Now, I personally grew up in a home where every choice was weighed with our religious beliefs. Smoking, drinking was off-limits. Cussing was a no-no. And so on personally, after a few life changes, I made a conscious decision to walk a completely different, more spiritual path. This meant I began to find my own personal code of truth. And what values did I want to keep from growing up versus what beliefs fail to ring true for me anymore? I need you to understand. I hold no anger or malice towards my childhood church. In fact, I’m an open book and if people really want to know or understand what they’re truly about, I actively correct those false beliefs and encourage understanding, which you know, has kind of become my niche in life, is helping people to find understanding.Read More
You have the freedom of choice to explore that. And you’re going to try it because you’re curious, I didn’t really start drinking until I was in my early thirties. My gateway was definitely the sweeter Tiki bar type of mixed drinks. Sweet fruity, no burn, goes down so easily. And eventually, I branched into trying wine and I loved the white bubbly, sweet stuff. Then I learned about pairings. If you asked me, would you like a little cheese with that wine? My answer would be hell yes because I loved the way that a creamy Brie would taste with this deep, dry red. It was really fun to learn about how they played off of each other. 10 years later, I found flavored whiskeys were delightful to play around with. Yeah, it took 10 years because I didn’t drink that often. It wasn’t something that I did a lot.
It was mostly social when we had friends over and it was 10 years later that I finally started mixing my own drinks and kind of exploring and playing with things, whipped cream, LOD Cub became an easy, oh two. It took a long time to expand my palette into what different types of things did I like and continue exploring that realm of is this wrong? Is this right? Is this something like, what is my personal stance on this topic whatsoever? Last year, I realized that I had joined the throng of people who had increased their drinking throughout COVID. What used to be social had become almost routine. It wasn’t every night and yet it was more nights than not. When I did drink where it used to be one drink, it would be two or three. And to be honest, I didn’t really think of it much.
Initially. I thought it was okay, whatever, not a big deal. Then I began experiencing migraines and I explained it away by saying it was the added stress that I’m under. It’s gotta be the stress. There’s no reason else that I would have migraines. My digestion was less than stellar and pain winning the cause of my upset continually eluded our efforts. My husband and I were constantly trying to understand what food did I have. What’s going on here? What’s going on there. And finally, one day Jay said, I wonder if alcohol is playing a role in it. I didn’t want to hear that. I really didn’t want to hear that. I didn’t want somebody else telling me, well, you probably shouldn’t be drinking. Because that really made me annoyed and frustrated. Yet I thought, okay, fine. I’ll cut it out, bring it on. You know, I wanted to prove him wrong, like not a big deal.
So in the beginning it was a little bit awkward because you go out with your friends and you’ve been socially drinking and they’re used to social drinking and you are instead just drinking water or ordering some kind of a mocktail. And they are, what, why, why would you let that go? And then other people were nonchalant. Didn’t even care. My social connection with drinks was a little bit different because people didn’t know if I would get as loose and relaxed and just kind of let go as I used to. So they were watching, I also had to set boundaries around my being a designated driver because when you go out with a group and you’re socially drinking, it’s easy for everyone to think, oh, she’s not drinking so she can be driving. But that’s, that’s not why I went out. I don’t want that responsibility just because I choose not to drink.
Doesn’t mean that I have to choose to get you safely home. It was a challenge. And yet after a month, I went off of all the digestive enzymes that I’d been taking just to see how it would go. I haven’t needed them since I also chose to test the waters without my migraine preventative. And you know what? I haven’t looked back. I’ve noticed my energy returned. My outlook on life has improved. I’ve been more inspired and able to write. I felt like the clouds have been lifting and my can-do attitude is sparking again. It means that I want to be active and doing instead of the half to what do I have to do today? We’ve all heard that alcohol is a depressant. I didn’t think I was having enough to really have that much of an effect. And yet I did.
And it was, I grew up being told it was wrong. It was one of those because I said so rules that are so infuriatingly frustrating to a kid. And now for me, instead of a rule, it’s become a choice. I took that box, that childhood forbidden box off of the shelf and I unwrapped it. I checked it out. I tried it on for size, like a comfy pair of sweats. And I wore that pair of sweats until they were holey and really just needed to be let go. Sometimes when we embrace our own explanation of why the rule exists, it’s so much easier to allow it to become your own. It’s not an imposition anymore, but a blessing. So in asking people what their thoughts are on alcohol, on drinking, or on letting go of things that have really been not beneficial for them, even though they really wanted it, we’ve gotten a lot of responses.
Some people have talked about toxic relationships and how there have been some toxic relationships that they held onto believing that they were serving them. Yet letting it go has been so much better for them. Mine was alcohol. What rule have you fought tooth and nail against because the beacon size that’s out, didn’t work for you only to discover later on in life that you are more than happy to embrace the gift that it gave you? It could just be that shift in perspective concerning guidelines. And yet it can completely shift your attitude and your energy. The number of people that I have had come up to me and say, oh my gosh, I too, don’t drink anymore. And I’m glad that you’re mentioning this because my family thinks it’s weird or someone else said, you know, I really hadn’t had the guts to give it up.
I hadn’t thought about that. We can all be supportive for each other. So yeah, I gave up drinking and I feel better for it. And I am so grateful for that. People continue to ask me, do you still feel better? Yes. I still feel better. Maybe you are trying to let go of something that’s toxic or maybe a friend is trying to let go of something that is toxic. Perhaps you can support each other. Like my husband supported me saying, Hey, maybe it’s a problem. Let’s give it a shot. Let’s check it out. Let’s see. And if it’s not a problem, we can go right back to Saturday nights. If it is a problem we’ll look at a new way to be a new shift, a new opportunity. So I hope that this topic is one that sits with you as well.
I hope that it resonates with you, my listeners, as much as it did with my other newsletter subscribers. And I hope that it starts a conversation, whether it be with yourself about what you’re facing or with other people that are around you, what have you bucked against? What rules have you explored the foundation of and then found something new for yourself? Or what can you, what needs to be explored? What system needs to be bucked against so that you can then decide, do I really like that? And I want to continue subscribing to it, or is it time for me to let it go? Because it’s toxic and it’s really not serving you. Here are just some fabulous conversations and some intensive personal healing. I’m hoping that this was inspiring. I’m hoping you’re excited.
I look forward to being with you again here next week on Breathe In, Breathe Out.
I hope this moment of self-care and healing brought you some hope and peace. I’m @krystaljakosky on Instagram, Facebook, and YouTube and I hope you check us out and follow along for more content coming soon. I look forward to being with you again here on Breathe In, Breathe Out. Until next time, take care.