Time…to reconnect

3 Jan

January 3, 2016, 11:52 am

Hi, all.  Welp, it’s been a rough re-entry into the new year.  I flew 15 hours (well, about 9 hours flight time) on the 1st, and wow, that’s ONE way to spend the first day of the year, I suppose.  I’m still, um, getting things moving again (I feel like both body and brain have sort of stopped working).

I have no words for the year, besides, keep going.  I would love to be less hard on myself, and to allow myself to forget (or at least, value less) my “fabulously interesting” thoughts and feelings; I would love to expect less and fret less and feel less freakishly depressed by my lack-of-placeness and my inevitable march toward what I see as “sexy-less” old age–God, I would love to not know.  I would love to not know.

But, my heart aches, and it breathes, and I cannot deny that.  I do know, somehow, all that I should and will.  I can no longer deny that I have been in tears since day one of this new year, barely hanging onto the scaffolding that I believe (maybe erroneously) holds my world together.  That scaffolding is sobriety, and without it, I would not be able to think clearly on any level.  As it is, I have begun to use caffeine again, and while it’s not as bad as wine–and actually helps move the cells up there, like a temporary reassembly; like packed dirt being roused into a cloud of dust–I don’t like it.  It tires me out, and I am (of course, I am) afraid that I won’t be able to write without my coffee crutch.

So, here I am, knowing that last night I did stare once again at the bottles of Pinot on the shelves, sad-eyed and groggy-brained, wondering, what if?  What if it still worked?  What if it still helped?  I got to thinking about this podcast I listened to, about this dude who “just like that” found himself at a bar, drinking five beers.  And, it angered me.  How dare you, you fucking asshole?  Like THIS shit is so easy to do–fall off the wagon, drink JUST BECAUSE.  And it made me think, there are so many of us–many who are women, and many of these women whose stories are not told, buried, yet ignored–who drink BECAUSE IT SAVES US.  Because the mental and emotional pain, the anguish, whatever it is that society deems silly or worthless to reveal and express, becomes unbearable.

There is nothing else that will fix this, is what I was thinking in my car last afternoon, as I looked, shocked, in the rear view mirror to see a very fraught, wrinkled, greying ME staring into the back seat.

There is nothing else that will fix this pain.  I let myself think it, freely.  So that I could wonder, is this true?  Do I believe this to be true?  I know that the answer is NO, to both questions; but…a part of me remains baffled as to what WILL fix it.  And equally baffled as to, what the fuck IS this pain?  Is it in me?  Is it made up of the hundred million things around me, that make up my world, that don’t feel right?  That leave me feeling tired, and empty, that eat away at the fullness of my soul?  Is it without, embodied by ISIS, and Trump, and climate change–things that I have no control over but that make up my reality, reality in general, even so?  I think part of my role, one that I have to fulfill, if even just for my sanity, is figuring this out; it’s tiring, but I’ve found over the past several months that ignoring it is not going to help me (or help my friends, or help the world–if there is a world that needs my help).  I just can’t turn off the radio yet; maybe Tyreese can, but I can’t (haha–a reference to my fave show, “The Waking Dead”).

I chose to not drink last night, not because of my lofty morals, but because I know it doesn’t work.  And I am afraid of hangovers, because they do not go away the same way they did when I was actively downing two bottles of wine a night.  And, well, I know that it would leave me feeling MORE depressed, and that I would not be able to assuage that sadness by getting up and out and going to the gym this day or the next.  I know that being under the control of a hangover, and wasting my day, would serve to catapult me even deeper into helplessness and hopelessness.

I am not helpless, and I am not hopeless.  I think I’m just sad, feeling stateless, and on the brink of having to make a major life decision.  And, I don’t feel empowered by what I’m doing at the moment, and I don’t feel settled where I’m living, and frankly, I feel like I’m aging here and I do not like it.  No, I do not like it.

I can see so clearly that I do not belong back there, in the tunnel; but, I miss the tunnel.  It’s ridiculous, right?  Only from the end outside of the fucking tunnel can I say, I miss being stuck there.  Because I was younger, and I was naive; and the fretting is part of the addiction.

I think, for me anyway, growing old gracefully is about letting go of the struggles of the past; these struggles are not what makes a life interesting, and sexy, and fun.  These struggles are supposed to end, and you are supposed to move forward, and do new things, and be a new woman.  I cannot go “home” again to being a girl; and, with that, I know that “home” was an illusion that I created.  And, I can only know this because I am, sort of bemusedly smiling as I look, staring back at that girl, clucking my tongue, thinking, My, my, my, you are cute, aren’t you.

I do not like moving from girl to woman.  I can embrace it, and accept it, but I’m not about liking it right now.  And that is truth.

So, I come back to you, friends, my pink cloud having utterly dissipated.

Happy New Year!

(2016, while off to a rocky start, is still ENABLED by sobriety.  Anything and everything that I do this day, this weekend, this year, is going to be made possible by being sober.  Once I get past this…next month, I guess; I think things will start to bloom.  I have been doing a lot of planting, and building; and this year will be no exception.  I think it’s going to be about continuing to build, but also, pulling the cord and making some choices.  About making some ideas and dreams into reality.  About embracing the hard work of making dreams happen.  Maybe that’s why I feel saddened–overwhelmed by the deep joy of living sober, of the work that is here, to be done.)

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24 Responses to “Time…to reconnect”

  1. dpallee January 3, 2016 at 3:16 pm #

    Keep on keeping on girl…..we enjoy hearing your voice in our heads, reading your words and can only hope that our recognition of you helps give you a bit of vice to get you through another day.

    • Drunky Drunk Girl January 3, 2016 at 3:17 pm #

      Thank you! It means much to have the support of this circle of very real friends…

  2. Maggie January 3, 2016 at 3:27 pm #

    Happy New Year! You so eloguently expressed how I am thinking and feeling to a tee. The holidays are always a difficult time for me. I am struggling in my marriage as well which clouds my thinking and threatens my sobriety. I have important life decisions to make, and I am scared as hell. Thank you for sharing your deepest thoughts with others. It truly helps me to know that I am not alone.

    • Drunky Drunk Girl January 3, 2016 at 3:49 pm #

      So glad you are reading, and connecting with it–helps me to feel I am not alone either!

  3. A Rewarding Life January 3, 2016 at 3:36 pm #

    Exactly! That is what my brain is saying and I want to go back. But, like Midnight in Paris – looking back is romantic but living through it was awful. So where does that leave me? At feeling awful with no drinking. That is my goal this year. Not looking back and finding a replacement escape. Sadly, it may have to be exercise instead of ice cream. Wonderful post!! Lori

    • Drunky Drunk Girl January 3, 2016 at 3:52 pm #

      Thank you for sharing…and yes, romanticizing the awful is about right!

  4. Seattle Lady Lush January 3, 2016 at 3:37 pm #

    Thank you for this post. You just gave me a boost. I despise the reality of what I am about to say. Yet another fucking self help book, when really all that keeps my shit barely together is sobriety. Going out on a limb to share about Veronica Valli and her book Why You Drink and How to Stop. She’s a Brit and a decent writer too. She gowes behind the scenes into that primal place where all our crap and pain come from to talk about how we are wired by all the crap that gets heaped on us (nope, no victim bullshit either) and how we get sort of programmed along our path toward alcohol abuse. If nothing else, it’s a quick good read. From one aging beauty to another, and I’m 50, you’re absolutely right. The booze won’t kill the pain, ever. But, like that Alanis Morissette song, “…whatever I resist persists…” feeling through all that toxic shit is crucial in order to release it all back to the peeps that heaped it on to begin with. That, and you’re right, we aren’t supposed to hold onto any of the garbage. Often easier said than done for a drunk like me. I tend to wallow. So here’s to chasing the light, and being outside the tunnel. I miss it too. Seattle Lady Lush.

    • Drunky Drunk Girl January 3, 2016 at 3:52 pm #

      So glad to hear I am not alone…and happy that this post gave you a boost. Your advice is much appreciated…

  5. losedabooze January 3, 2016 at 3:59 pm #

    Very deep post and yet I think it’s what many of us go through or feel when we are in a state of ‘what’s next’?! I think the no going back is key and that we must continue to move forward. Your sobriety strength gives me strength. 2015 was tough for me on the alcohol front with only 65 days sober. I’m looking to change those stats this year – while I’m not looking to be completely without, I definitely don’t want it to be the crutch and escape or excuse it has been in 2015.

  6. mishedup January 3, 2016 at 4:07 pm #

    oh honey…
    I am so sorry for all this shit you’re going through…know that we see you, we do.
    You are so right, there are a bunch of people out there drinking as medicine, and that can look god because , at least I, remember a time when it DID work.
    But then it didn’t, not for a very long time, and that’s what i hold onto. That horrible, soul sucking place of no-fix nothingness
    there are ways out, you will find them. They are as individual as all of us, but they are there.
    I do yoga, meditate, help others…a myriad of things that keep me from thinking too much about my problems, both large, vert large, and mundane.
    i believe you will find something to work for you because you are still sober, and intend of drinking you posted on a VERY long quiet blog.
    You got this.
    You gotta walk through the pain tho. it’s the only way.
    and you know that because that’s what you are doing.
    hang in there. You have support

  7. Unconfirmed Bachelorette January 3, 2016 at 4:29 pm #

    I hear you. And I, too, am connecting. Being out of the fog is hard work. And I agree–it makes everything possible.

  8. Amy January 3, 2016 at 7:16 pm #

    I always love reading your blog because I get the “me too’s” all over the place. I’ve been feeling caught in the middle- on the verge, so totally sad this fall I wanted to just quit everything and retreat to a cave. Sometimes it takes so much just to do a regular day. I’m grooving on the coffee too even though I know, green tea and coffee makes me edgy and off I still want it because- well, because I’m being bratty about it.

    Have you read “Rising Strong” by Brene Brown? I’m at the part where she talks about there being three steps thru things and how the second step is the longest and most boring but maybe the most important one.

    Mostly I’m sending you a hug and some sunshine. This inbetween place isn’t easy, but it can be ok. Keep writing! I like having you around. 🙂 xo amy

  9. ainsobriety January 3, 2016 at 8:08 pm #

    Hugs. The waiting period after planting is always tough. That’s where you need faith the seed will sprout and some day blossom. It’s not easy when all you can see is dirt.

    You have lots of friends here.

    Anne

  10. furtheron January 4, 2016 at 4:25 am #

    This sobriety crap ain’t easy. Keep on trying. I like that you accept your life without necessarily liking it – I think that is a majorly good advance in the mental process.
    Good luck

  11. cb January 4, 2016 at 7:10 pm #

    So…if you get this post twice I am so sorry. I couldn’t log in and blah blah blah.

    Anyway, I love hearing from you. To me you are reality. So many bloggers decide to get sober, never drink again and live happily ever after. That is so not the case.

    For me, it took me YEARS but I got right around 290 days. Then I fell off. I’m just now deciding to stop drinking again. And, I do not know where to start. Do I tell everyone? Do I just quietly rest my counter? Do I tell my guy? Me drinking is a deal breaker.

    BUT, here’s the thing: I NEEDED TO DRINK. I need to remember the awful lies and tricks. I needed to remember what it was like to have plans and change them just so I could drink. I needed to remember that when I start drinking again the thirst is always there.

    Honestly, I do not like counting days. I just like not drinking. Are there bumps in that road? Yup, but for the most part I do not drink. What if only drink once or twice a year? Is that NOT a victory?

  12. emma January 6, 2016 at 6:15 pm #

    However frustrated and stuck you feel know that you are making a difference to people like me by so truthfully and eloquently sharing your thoughts and experiences. I’m a 43 yr old single journalist living on a not so paradisical or tropical tiny island, 9:wks sober, and your blog resonates more strongly withwme, and causes me to reflect more, than any other I’ve read. Thank you ddg! X

  13. holly January 17, 2016 at 4:59 am #

    I was on day 4. But i was done with work, my son was gone to work also and i was home AGAIN watching SVU , and was bored and lonely and i went and bought a bottle. Vodka, Diet Tonic, and lime. I DRANK THE WHOLE fifth…. not uncommon for me. im on my last little bit now. I want to post this because. I want others to feel loved. I grew up poor but didnt know it. I was molested early by a cousin, but didnt know it. I was left for days with strangers and family but didnt know it. By the time i got to High School, i was a cheerleader, prom queen and one of the most popular girls in school. I dropped out my 11th year, I never did any drugs, but i would drink, but i didnt even like the taste so i would fake it alot. A few sips here and there. No big deal. That was 30 years ago. Im a full blown alcoholic now. Im afraid to go out, because i always seems to embarrass myself or my friends. My son is graduating College in a few weeks, Im single, Im 46, never married. Broken, Beautiful and Tragic. I will try again soon. good luck everyone!

  14. Ramona January 20, 2016 at 3:27 pm #

    What a wonderfully honest post. I just came back after relapsing again and again in a foreign country and finally returning after almost taking my eye out during a drunken fall. It’s harder getting back on the wagon than it is falling off so, I’m glad despite the s^%$, you are still hanging on. Keep keeping on. Your courage is inspiring!

    • Drunky Drunk Girl January 20, 2016 at 11:37 pm #

      Good for you, Ramona! I know you can do it. I don’t know if I’m courageous, but I do know that drinking just doesn’t work for me anymore (literally and figuratively)…

  15. paul January 22, 2016 at 12:08 am #

    Great insight, I am struggling with alcoholism by developing new coping strategies. Doing things the old way did not prove effective so a new approach may help. I attended a rehab and devote a great deal of time to finding out about new coping strategies and testing these out.

  16. miriam apisdorf February 7, 2016 at 2:35 pm #

    Hi Drunky Drunk girl – I love your honest writing. As a woman who has suffered from depression since childhood and self- medicated since a teenager. (pills, cocaine and alcohol) I can relate to your inner pain.
    Recently I tried TMS – Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation
    . It is used for depression, bi-polar, ADDICTION, and other things. Google it.
    There are a lot of testimonials. It is usually covered by insurance.
    It really helped me.
    I am now on day 15 of not drinking (wine).
    I think the TMS is helping me not drink because my pain has lessened.
    You can check out Martha Rhodes – she has a website and book called ‘3000 Pulses Later”.

    Miriam

  17. Marie February 15, 2016 at 4:52 pm #

    I have staying sober due to lifelong depression. Do you think you might have clinical depression? I feel like I need to address my depression, but pharmeucutical medications come with side effects I cannot deal with. So for me I feel like I’m screwed when I’m sober and screwed when I’m not sober. It’s a miserable existence either way and I don’t know what to do.

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