Last Thursday night, I was sitting at a rooftop bar under glowing string lights as the waitress arrived with our drinks. In this quintessential hipster moment, each of my friends excitedly took their mason jars, Instagrammed a photo, and raised a glass. And there I was, awkwardly holding up my glass of water. (It was in a mason jar, though. Am I still cool?)
Before you cast judgment on me, no, I’m not one of those people who’s disgusted by alcohol, looks down on those who drink, or even speaks about drinking often. In fact, I’ve never even written about drinking until now. Because, for me, there isn’t much to think about. Ever since I made the decision to stop drinking, my life has improved so dramatically that I’ve never had one “what if” or moment of FOMO. It’s just not in me anymore.
From a young age, I thought of drinking as a mature and fun activity that had the power to make you classier. I saw my parents drinking at fancy dinner parties, attractive college types getting wasted on TV, and older cousins toasting with cocktails at family events. So, from the second I was given the opportunity, I went for it. I was 14. Now, 10 years later, I can confidently say that most of the mistakes I’ve made in my life were caused by alcohol consumption.