Damien’s Note: Ericka started following this blog on it’s Facebook page a while ago and recently reached out with a series of articles written from her personal experience. Here is the second in the series. I can certainly relate to parts of her story and I suspect some of my readers will as well. This piece was written on August 6, 2015.
It was July 4th weekend when my whole family came for a long weekend visit. I lived near the ocean, so my place was the perfect summer vacation spot. I was so excited and looking forward to having everyone under my roof. At this time, my husband and I were still sleeping in separate rooms and for the most part living separate lives. He really wasn’t too thrilled with everyone coming because as he always would say, “it’s your family.” It was the first time we would all be together in a long time and all I wanted was for my husband to be present. Upon their arrival, he made excuses to run some errands and stayed away for hours.
That morning I had already started my drinking. After breakfast, I opened up my first bottle of wine and proceeded to finish it before noon. I had a plan to just sip throughout the day so that maybe I could once again hide the fact that I was drinking a lot. I knew once everyone arrived, we would be packing up the coolers with beer and soda and heading to the beach. I couldn’t wait. I could drink the beer freely along with everyone else. During this time, I knew my drinking was getting heavier, but denial still lived inside me.
We had an amazing visit together all weekend long and I was drinking not only with everyone but behind closed doors as well. I had my stash of wine in my bedroom and whenever I had a moment I would go upstairs and have a nice, long sip. Sips turned into gulps and then I knew I had to hold it together. I really don’t think anyone noticed. I thought I had complete control over my drinking. I was so very wrong.
The short vacation with my family came to an end. My husband did several disappearing acts during the weekend. This was so difficult for me because it was so out of character for him. I just knew our marriage was not going to last much longer. I just didn’t get it, but my wine did for it always understood. As my family pulled away to head home, I waved goodbye and cried. I walked back in the house, grabbed my purse, got in my car, and went straight to the store. That night I would drink my sadness away.
Ericka’s Bio: Ericka Brandt Delagarza is a professional, creative, and witty writer who has been published on many blogs and websites. Her most recent accomplishment was as a co-contributor for the cookbook, “What’s Left to Eat” which debuted as a number one international best seller on Amazon.com. As an amazing home cook, foodie, writer, and former resident of Europe, and Puerto Rico, as well the East Coast, Ericka writes just about anything these days. With food and travel as her passion, she has found writing about her struggle with alcohol and staying sober over the last five years the most difficult, yet very therapeutic experience to date.