I decided to do “Dry January” this past month. I also decided to add potato chips to my list of banished foods for the first month of 2022. Significant Other and I had got into the habit, during the pandemic, of nightly wine with some snacks – usually highly-caloric snacks. Now, we never had more than a glass (or two), but still, when something becomes a daily habit or ritual, especially when it involves an addictive substance, it is probably a good idea to challenge it. Also, I wanted to lose some weight and give my arteries and organs a bit of a break to start the year, a “reset,” to use an over-used term. I had read numerous first-person columns about all of the great things that happened to other people when they signed up for however many “dry” days. You will feel better, look better and sleep better, I was told. Ha! Now, I have lost some weight, so I probably look a bit better and yes, weight loss is often a good feeling. But the thing I was most looking forward to – the sleeping better – never came to pass. I am still a terrible, restless and anxious sleeper. I can honestly say that, sans wine in my life I did not notice one wee iota of difference in my sleep patterns. So there goes some motivation for future wine-free months. That said, I do think I will forego nightly wine and keep potato chips to a minimum. The very good news is that I missed the junky food more than the wine. I was concerned the opposite would be the case, but after a couple of nights, I did not miss wine. I think habits are just that: habits. You replace them with another. I began having more herbal tea, sparkling water and diet gingerale than in previous months. I also partook of some alcohol-free wine. It was not bad, actually, but it did lack something…oh yeah, the thing that makes one’s shoulders go down apace.
Dry January: I give it seven out of a possible ten stars. Good to check one’s habits lest they become something more fiendish. But not the answer to all of one’s woes (real or imaginary).