My identity was wrapped up in my drinking. I was a drinker, and for a long while that was a positive identity to me: it signified I enjoyed life, I was fun, adventurous, edgy even. As the weeks and months tick by I'm shedding both the positive and negative of that drinker identity.
But in the void of that lost identity doesn't seem to be a new identity forming. I don't feel a kindred connection with non-drinkers/light drinkers and I have yet to meet anyone in the flesh that is in recovery. Drinkers have clear edges, you either can hold your own belly up to the bar or not. And once you prove yourself and are in the club, you really can do no wrong...all bad behavior is excused or made into a good story--and you are always welcome into the circle. That part of the identity is what I miss and I don't think sense of belonging occurs in the non-drinker side of things in the same way.
I am wrapping my mind around this drinking identity as being another discarded costume I have worn as part of the process of becoming who I am. It served its purpose, and I really mean that, to get me here...right here...in my life. Maybe there was an easier way to get here, but probably not.
-Drinking: A Love Story by Caroline Knapp -Almost Alcoholic by Joseph Nowinski and Robert Doyle -After the Tears: Helping Adult Children of Alcoholics Heal Their Childhood by Jane Middelton-Moz and Lorie Dwinell