Nope…no “sober high” here.
I feel a rush of endorphins on occasion when I’m trail running, or when I’m riding a sketchy trail on my mountain bike. I feel high on life when I get a flood of those same “fight or flight” brain chemicals on a rock climbing wall, or even sometimes after a public speaking engagement.
I would never begin to describe this process of sobriety as a high…it has never felt even remotely pleasant. It has been difficult, it has been at times painful, both physically and emotionally and it has truly been unenjoyable. In fact, the only joy I have received from the process itself, has been the ability to make it through a day without arguing with my wife. Wait, actually there is more. I haven’t been verbally abusive toward my wife…I haven’t wreaked of alcohol when I put my kids to bed…I haven’t made an absolute ass out of myself in front of all my neighbors…I haven’t passed out drunk…I haven’t blacked out and not remembered what an ass I made of myself…I haven’t called in sick and inconvenienced my coworkers who had to pick up my slack…I haven’t woke up with a hangover…I haven’t yelled at my kids…I haven’t regretted my actions the night before.
I HAVE on the other hand…spent more time with my kids…given my children and wife my undivided attention…been pleasant to be around…been more level headed…allowed myself to come to terms with emotional and mental trauma I was burying for years…gone to therapy to address post traumatic stress…forgiven myself for things that were outside my control…seen the world through eyes in a head, unclouded by a drunken or hungover perspective.
I have experienced absolutely no “sober high”, but I am an improved version of myself and able to fully enjoy all of those things that bring me joy in a healthy fulfilling life.
Something else I have been able to experience is being part of this forum…meeting some wonderful, messed up people just like me…who understand the difficulty of this life we seek, and who are more than willing to offer a ton of advice based on their unique and collective experiences with addiction and sobriety.