Sober October

Day 13 . . . of 30! As I feel gross and lethargic after a night of eating way too much Thanksgiving turkey and all the fixings (yes, we Canadians celebrate Thanksgiving the second weekend in October), a thought occurs to me; If I feel this gross from last night’s food coma, it’s no wonder that I have a raging hangover after a night of drinking and eating. Last night I indulged in food and friendship but did not indulge in the vino that sat on the counter. Why? Am I insane? The thought did cross my mind several times last night as I sipped a tiny taste of delicious Malbec from Siren’s Call.


The rich smoothness was enhanced by a subtle lingering spice and I desperately wanted to take a second sip but I withheld, refusing the rest of the glass. Why no wine? Well a few weeks ago I decided to give my body and brain a break from one of my favorite indulgences.

“Why the hell would you stop drinking wine?” my girlfriend asked, with a perplexed look on her face.

I seriously had to think about that answer as I have asked myself that very question several times over the past 13 days. I have pondered my intense relationship with wine over the past few months and it’s always left me feeling uneasy. As you can imagine, living in Whistler and Sayulita – two super fun tourist towns – there is an excuse to have a cocktail every night of the week and it is perfectly acceptable. So after a very fun and social summer, I began to feel foggy and lethargic; basically like hammered shit. I knew I had to rein it in and get clean and healthy.

I usually don’t drink wine every day as I simple can’t. I need to be clear in the mornings, especially before styling a wedding or teaching yoga. I like to keep my wine consumption days to 25 per cent of the month, so a total of seven days, approximately two days a week. So I started to count the number of days over the past few months that I had a glass of wine. Even if it was just one or two, I was averaging around 60 per cent. I freaked the fuck out. My first panicked thought was, “Jesus Christ, I’m an alcoholic!” Hence my quest for Sober October.

AAfter 13 days, I have realized that I am definitely NOT an alcoholic (thank God!). The first few days were interesting; there was no craving for alcohol but lots of cravings for sugar and carbs. But I was also eating a really clean diet. After four days, I felt great. My mind was clear and I had lots of energy. By day six I noticed that my emotions were in check, even considering I was PMSing, which was shocking.

(Note to self . . . no drinking during PMS and my period – no more freak outs!) There have been a few other things that I have noticed:

  1. I have no issue not drinking in a social situation but I have limited tolerance for drunk people. Do I really repeat myself over and over again after three glasses of wine?
  2. Eating the wrong foods for me: sugar, bread and dairy, gives me way more of a hangover than wine.
  3. I don’t miss drinking wine with my girlfriends or during a dinner party or after work, BUT I do miss drinking wine at sunset or while I am cooking a special dinner.
  4. EVERYONE has an indulgence or a vice, and if they say they don’t, they’re full of shit! Let’s just admit it and be honest. What do you crave every single day? Is it wine, coffee, chocolate, pot, sex, exercise or the dreaded white powder: SUGAR? (This one blows my mind . . . I have witnessed women say they have no vices: they don’t drink alcohol or smoke pot, they only drink green tea and lemon water, they are wheat free and vegetarian, but then they eat three pieces of cake or a box of gluten-free pop tarts and end up on a sugar high.)

My Conclusion
I feel great and love having a clear mind and healthy body. Habits are just patterns we have trained our body to expect. Every once in a while, it’s a good thing and a challenge to change up those habits. Why? When you change a pattern, habit or routine, all of sudden you become more aware and see something beautiful and different. But I also freakin’ LOVE wine and am seriously going to enjoy every last drop in my glass on Oct 29th (I started on Sept 28th). I am going to open my bottle of Siren’s Call Malbec and I am going to savour it, sip it and honour it because it’s a special treat and an indulgence, something to celebrate with. I have a new respect for wine and my love of it, and to go with that, I have created a new life and wine mantra: one tastes amazing, two feels freakin’ fabulous but three, well, there is nothing else gained. The age-old saying is really true: everything in moderation. It’s much better to admit your vice and learn to respect it. Anything that helps you keep it in moderation.

So bring on the next 17 days of clean living! I am stoked because at the end of the month, I have a lot of things to celebrate with my bottle of Siren’s Call: my surf sisters and a beautiful sunset!


Marjie Martini

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