I've not had booze for over a month now. When I met people previously who said stuff like this, I automatically assumed they were massive bores. However, sobriety is actually quite nice - here's what I've learned...
1. I can afford shit. Argh, have you ever woken up after a night out and traced your movements backwards through receipts? Rounds of red wine! Takeway! Taxis! So many taxis... Fact: booze is expensive. Not drinking it has allowed me to ruin myself financially at Topshop and Harvey Nichols instead.
2. Doing things on Sunday is completely valid. Look, I'm not one of those people getting up at 6am and tweeting from their morning five-hour run, but pictures are now in frames and roasts made in my kitchen. Sadly, this also means I now know just how rubbish my cooker actually is.
3. I have no fear. Okay, context: fear as in The Fear that comes from an empty stomach-ed night on the lash. I probably won't be wrestling bears or getting Botox anytime soon (well, the first one anyway).
4. I don't like carbs as much as I thought. The joy of a starchy something - I genuinely thought nothing could beat it. But actually, having no hangover has made me reach for the "lighter option" - salad, soup and the like. Now I know why my mum always looks so smug at lunch.
5. I'm not a smoker! It turns out the only thing convincing me chuffing away a 10-pack is a great idea is white wine. I've been offered ciggies left and right as a consolation for not drinking, but have become strangely whevs about my other favourite vice.
6. I can dance averagely without booze. Not brilliantly - there's a definite shakiness - and sadly I've learned this woman cannot grind along to Rihanna on cranberry juice alone. However, there have been definite good times on the dance floor recently and joyfully, I remember them.
7. My relationship is 100% happier. You know how there's usually one person in a couple who likes the sauce more? That's always been me. My husband literally has one beer at Christmas. Oh, the guilt of always being the drunk/hungover one. With that gone, things are much sunnier.
8. Sober = skinnier. No more bloated face. No more late night bingeing. Hello skinny jeans.
9. Going for dinner is lovely. Obviously, right? But previously I've never wanted to stall the drinking for a stupid, civilised restaurant. Turns out I love restaurants! You always get a seat eventually and in the good ones, you don't have to listen to house music.
10. Some people can only be friends if they're both hammered. The inconvenient truth. There are pals who you only click with when there's wine in the house. They're still brilliant but hanging out with them during periods of sobriety is a spectacularly bad idea. Finding common ground is like a giraffe trying to have a nice chat with a tiger. To my knowledge, David Attenborough hasn't tackled this but I'd put my money on it being awkward/impossible.