I always thought that when I became pregnant, I was going to hate not drinking. I don’t think I drink very much compared to the general population, but I enjoy the social component that accompanies drinking and I love an occasional glass (or 2) of red to unwind during the week. Spoiler: it hasn’t been that hard!
If you are considering skipping booze before the wedding this post is for you! The second month of the Shed program is booze-free. While it is not required for longer than a month, I highly recommend skipping booze for the few months before your wedding. It will really bring out that bridal glow! Below, I’m sharing my experience and tips on skipping booze from over the past few months!
Day-to-Day Sans Alcohol
In general I wake up with more energy. I can only imagine how wonderful I would feel if I wasn’t pregnant (AKA not waking up in the middle of the night to pee every night and the general exhaustion that goes along with it!). In all honesty, I think that most of the benefits of not drinking are somewhat compromised by pregnancy symptoms (for me at least)– so non-prego brides-to-be take advantage of this time! More on this in section 3!
While I do miss the occasional relaxed buzz vibe from a nice glass of shiraz, I really have been amazed at how little it has affected my overall enjoyment of social events. I’ve been to several large parties and weddings sober now and have been able to really enjoy them. Here is how I have taken them on to maximize my enjoyment:
I always carry a drink- preferably similar to what I typically drink. Like a soda water with a splash of cranberry (all I’m missing is the vodka!). Before I was showing, people had no idea, and I even felt like I was drinking with them. My mom was laughing at me on the dance floor at a wedding, still holding my drink. Holding a drink, alcohol or not, is a part of my party persona and it really makes me feel like my normal self. Pro tip: ask the bartender to use the same glass that they are serving alcoholic drinks in especially if you are not public with you news yet! It can be a dead giveaway (I’ve busted several friends this way!).
The above works until the witching hour- which is now what I refer to the period of time when everyone’s eyes begin to glaze over and don’t make sense anymore. That is now the time I know its time to GTFO. It’s no longer fun when your people don’t make sense. I find that leaving around 12:30 on average is probably the best call.
I also have been able to chill at crazy bars and have an amazing time, but at the end of the day it comes down to the company! I don’t need to be drinking to enjoy hanging with my friends!
What to drink
It is really nice to find any beverage besides water to drink - it can be really boring drinking water all day every day (including sparkling!).
If you are shedding for the wedding, you’ll want to avoid sugary mocktails:
Go for soda water with a splash of juice of your choice.
You can always add a dash of cucumber shrub (vinegar based flavor) or a tiny bit of bitters to change things up. But it’s really easy to overdo it! Gotta keep it in very small amounts!
If you want an extra caffeine boost- unsweetened iced tea is great and looks like it could be boozy.
You can enjoy kombucha just make sure the sugar content isn’t higher than 4g.
If you are shedding for the preg, all of the above works but be mindful, kombucha can have trace amounts of alcohol, so be mindful about your consumption. Feel free to enjoy those mocktails, but treat them as a dessert and enjoy them on occasion. Just don’t make them habitual.
Sober but still having hangovers
Oddly, I haven’t stopped getting hangovers! What?! How is that possible you say?
Well, what I’ve learned is that what I always thought was a standard hangover is a combination of either 2-4 things:
Previous high sugar consumption
Typically it just takes 2 (of the 4) to make it feel like a hangover. Obviously, #4 isn’t an issue for me right now, but if three happen, I’m really in trouble. So my number 1 objective is to drink enough water consistently throughout the day so I don’t need to drink a lot before bed. Number 2 objective- I now get like 9 hours of sleep- yeah I know that’s a luxurious amount. If I have less than that it’s problematic. I chalk it up to growing a human. But that being said this is why I feel like I’m hungover all the time. It’s hard to get that 9 hours. Lastly, I try not to overdo the sugar. It’s very easy to do if you are not being 100% active in keeping it down. Added sugars are in everything, and then if you are allowing for a treat most days, it can add up and really negate all of those positive benefits from skipping the booze!
If you are shedding for the wedding, added sugars are out and probably won’t need quite as much sleep. So hopefully, if you drink enough water, you should feel “hangover”-free, energized, and fabulous!
Overall, I think I may be choosing to skip the booze even after baby arrives! What do you think? Are you sober curious? Let me know if you are tempted to take a drinking hiatus or if you have any questions on the drink-free life! -AHS