Margo Price Shares Her New Sobriety, Calls Decision to Quit Drinking ‘the Most Rebellious Thing I’ve Ever Done in My Life’
Margo Price is nearly three months sober. In a new essay for GQ magazine, the singer-songwriter explains her decision to quit drinking, and why she chose to do so during the stressful, tragic COVID-19 pandemic.
"I’ve been a witness to more loss than I should have seen in my early years. But I'm not afraid to die anymore. And I’m not afraid to live without the comfort of self-medicating," Price explains, calling her decision to quit drinking alcohol "the most rebellious thing I’ve ever done in my life."
Price had her last drink on Jan. 8, leaning into the words of Quit Like a Woman, a book by Holly Whitaker for support. "I started reading it with the thought that I would take a few months off drinking and clear my head. But as the book went on, I realized how wonderful it would be to just give it up forever," Price admits.
"For the first time in my life, I felt like I was being told the truth about alcohol — a narcotic that is made from ethanol. I’d always known drinking was bad for my health, but this was eye-opening on so many levels," she continues. "And after reading Holly’s book, it wasn’t even hard to quit. I find that I don’t miss alcohol at all."
Being off the road due to the pandemic — not to mention, she adds, "the election and the political climate and the cyber bullying and threats" — was causing her to drink more often. She was savoring the unexpected time at home with her family, "but I also missed my career and the way things used to be."
"My life was a balancing act," she admits, "and lots of days I fell very far off the tightrope."
Continues Price, "Canceled work and the thought of missing years in my prime turned regular days into one long, lost weekend. My drinking ebbed and flowed throughout quarantine, as it always has through my life ... I took many long breaks, as I’ve always done, sometimes even months at a time. I told myself I was in control, because many times I was. But as my 30s rolled on, I felt run down, and I knew my drinking was fueling my depression."
Price does not consider herself an alcoholic and isn't attending Alcoholics Anonymous meetings or using its 12-step program, she says. She does not regret her decisions pre-sobriety, either — "but," she admits, "I also believe that quitting drinking has made parenting and work easier."
"I can’t wait to return to traveling and playing shows, but in the meantime, I’m enjoying life like never before. I feel so healthy and full of energy. My mind is clear and my heart is full," she furthers, "And while it's no one’s business but my own, I am still smoking grass occasionally. I won’t apologize for that either."
Price released her most recent album, That's How Rumors Get Started, in 2020; she also released a live album, Perfectly Imperfect at the Ryman, culled from three May 2018 shows at the hallowed Nashville venue. To conclude the year, she dropped a cover of Joni Mitchell's "River."
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