Dude. I’m taking a break from the opening ceremonies of the Olympics, thinking a few things: one, damn, that Voldemort was huge; two, Kenneth Branagh…again?; and, three, the last opening ceremonies I watched was Beijing 2008 at a bar in [cold east coast city] with an ex-friend, mainly “ex” due to a combination of her ruthlessness when it comes to using people and my drinking problem. Think much?
So, I’ve taken some time off work/”real life” recently (well, for the past 7 months now — doh!) to, I’m realizing, get sober and rediscover myself. Recently I applied to a month-long retreat program at an ashram (think yoga, meditation, and ashram-y things like chanting) on the east coast. I thought I’d be a shoo-in, but I included on my app that I was 6 weeks sober and really wanted to use the program as a step toward healing and, dare I say, inner peace. Well, I finally heard back from them today, and the scoop is that yes, I’d be a great candidate cuz their integral yoga program is all about finding inner peace and the tools to maintain and flourish in that peace in the “outside” world; but no, I can’t come cuz they’re not a “facility” and their policy is at least 6 months sober and/or clean.
Bummer. I guess I had been wondering how I would manage, if my cravings somehow came back and/or if my mood fluctuated and I started to feel trapped, which seems to happen a lot these days.
However, I had a great chat with the “sister” who helps run the place. AND, I thought it very cool that she was 25 years clean, she told me. She offered me her two cents after I told her that my cravings were still quite strong: find a larger purpose outside yourself, in addition to a regular yoga practice; AND, don’t give in/stay sober. It’s a beautiful thing (sobriety), she said, adding that she wouldn’t even think twice about giving in and drinking now. I believed her, for some reason; maybe it was her honesty and earnestness, over the phone, to a stranger.
In any case, it made me think about AA again, and what a 12-step program could offer now that I’m well into resisting the desire to drink. Maybe a sense of community is really, actually, what I need? I never believed that AA could be psychologically beneficial in the long run; to me, it’s just an excuse for lonely people to come together and practice a pretend religion. Or to whine about how hard it was for them to quit spending MONEY THAT THEY ACTUALLY HAVE TO SPEND on BOOZE THAT IS ACTUALLY WIDELY AVAILABLE TO BUY (I’m thinking Haiti here, where there is no money, little booze (and infrastructure to move it around) and therefore, no drinking…unless you do cheap beer, strong rum, or moonshine, which I won’t even get into)! Irritating! Now, well, I guess I can see otherwise. It was just nice to talk to someone who’s been there; I actually thought about believing her when she said, You should resist your cravings because there is a lot of beauty awaiting you.
One more reason to stay sober…for good. Gulp. It’s real. It’s official. I’m a drunk, and now I’m sober. And sticking to it…for the long run. Yikes/Ugh. 😦
Funny, I had a hard time calling myself an alcoholic when she asked me about drinking and my newfound weeks of sobriety. I think I mumbled something about drinking wine a lot, it hurting my professional and personal lives and relationships… BUT, I wasn’t a “raging alcoholic,” you see… I sounded like the drunk-in-denial cliche. Worse, it made me feel confused: am I a drunk, or am I just putting myself through this sobriety nonsense cuz I’m melodramatizing a part of my life so that I feel like I have a goal, or a reason to live, or something higher than myself that happens to be nothing at all, really? Ugh.
Anyway, I SO HEART the Olympics! Such festivities! Such athletes! I wonder how awesome it must be to cover the Games as a sports journalist? Not to mention, how cool would it be to somehow be involved in them?