Hi KT. I have a long history with alcohol and can't see myself ever giving it up. I have, however, managed to moderate my drinking when I need to. When I was younger I got smashed just about every single night and now I limit myself to three or four beers a night during the work week. I just can't drink more than that and get up in the morning unless I've had a good eight hours of sleep, which I only have time for on the weekends. The weekends are a different story though. On a Friday night or a Saturday, it's not unusual for me to drink 15 or more beers. Last night I passed out on my kitchen floor and woke up there at about 6:30 AM, then stumbled off to bed and slept there for a few more hours. I tend to wake up in odd places on Saturday and Sunday mornings.
Like you, alcohol helps me to relax after a hard day's work. It "takes the edge off", if you will. Also, in social situations, it helps to cut down on some of the anxiety. Not to mention the fact that it's a temporary escape from my problems. Yeah, my body could do without the calories, but I try to eat right and work out enough to balance things out. I know it's bad for my liver and whatnot but I don't really care. I'm going to die someday anyway, right? I figure I'll always be a basket case with 1000 emotional problems and issues and I'd rather face life with those things and be drunk than face life with those things and be sober. If that means I'm a weak person, fine. I'll accept the label without argument.
If you're planning on giving up alcohol completely, good luck to you. Also to anyone who has chosen a totally sober life. My brother recently gave up drinking and is doing quite well with it. To you, my brother, and anyone else who has put the bottle down for good, I am sincerely happy for you and I'm rooting you on. Only I'm doing it with a beer in my hand. Take care. Peace,