Life has been slogging along and I've been mainly just writing in my physical journal and forgetting to blog. I don't think it matters too much but also I feel compelled to keep up with this practice.
Also yay to 100+ days.
I will say. I have been having nightmares about getting drunk and then having [redacted] tell me how much of a fuck up I am. I think it's less about the specific person and more about needing to tap into my own sense of radical forgiveness. I work hard toward self acceptance but I know that I have a lot of internal work to do.
I took on a new project at the women's center that I volunteer with. I'm going to set up their new library, which was the personal collection of their very inspiring founder. Hopefully once I'm done, we will have a reliable system for folks to check out books and a special collections library of high-value works that will stay in the center. I love books, so this is a very fun, low-key project for me that will hopefully benefit a lot of young women.
Revisiting my goals for the year, hoping to find some truth in that.
My roommate's boyfriend had a beer or two tonight and I really wanted one. IPAs were my favorite. Blah.
Instead I made kale chips and PB energy balls.
The last two days have been a frenzy because my dog has been sick and also had to get routine shots. Two trips to the vet in two days. Also behind at work. 🙁
Positives - went to a fun reading w friends, good therapy session today, the medicine is working and my dog seems to be improving !!!
So, I had a really fucked up dream last night. About getting really really wasted, pretending I wasn't wasted, and having sex with someone in a not very discreet place. And then I had to reckon with all the people who saw me having sex (including family members) and then I had to reckon with my sobriety and AA community about breaking sobriety. And the whole time I was lying to myself and everyone around me about how much I had to drink.
Which is kind of like a gross drawn out metaphor for the past... five years or something? I have a lot of shame tied up in my drinking, my sexuality, my ability to give consent, my relationship with my family. So, there's a lot of that at play in my subconscious, I guess.
There's a lot I'm afraid of. I'm afraid of getting drunk and fucking things up. I'm afraid of not being able to find love again. I'm afraid that the new friendships I'm so excited about will end up being disappointing over time. I'm afraid that once people get to know me, like really get to know me, they won't like me. I'm afraid of being abandoned. I'm afraid of all the things I can't control – including the state of our country, divisiveness, police brutality, systemic racism, the prison system. I'm afraid of being super fucking financially unstable. I'm afraid of what will happen when the people I love die.
That being said. Everyone is afraid of stuff. Probably all that stuff and then, like, a huge list of way more significant and legitimate things. I want to pick myself up and actually gain momentum so I can help other people who desperately need resources. I'm committed to doing my best. To showing up every day. To trying my fucking hardest to be present and to actually live and experience things. And to be better. And to help when I can and in the ways I'm able.
I choose to let fear go. But I have to keep choosing. It doesn't come naturally.
Actually showing up is the best way I know how to be like "yo fuck you" to my subconscious and my fear-brain. Like. Nah, I got this. I exist because of you and in spite of you. I am doing just fine. I am fucking trying, and you are not being nice to me. So I'm not going to talk to you anymore! That's me talking to my fear-brain.
I've been feeling extremely happy! I need to think a little more on a few topics before I write about them. For now, here are some pictures of the sky. I took a nice walk today.
Overarching sobriety thoughts. I can't believe I'm here at 3 months. This feels huge! Here's what I wrote on Instagram on the day: "Oh man. I hoped that I had it within me but honestly I'm still surprised and delighted by each little landmark. I feel so clear and grateful and capable! I feel like I'm forming genuine friendships and really experiencing things, rather than focusing on just one more drink. And okay, just ONE more. And okay. Let's just stop for one more. Still healing and growing and trying to deal with all my shit, but I feel like myself again and I feel like I'm a person who is worthwhile and deserving of love and good things. Which definitely wasn't the case a year ago, or even three months ago. Moving forward: I want to focus on finding ways to pour this love and clarity into outlets that allow me to help others and elevate other women who are struggling with addiction and mental health issues."
I do feel like myself again, in a big way. I am excited about learning. I am excited about other humans. I am excited about my own capacity to love and grow and experience things. I know for a FACT that my drinking was excessive and was co-mingling with my depression in a way that made me... not want to live / not care about myself or anyone else. It's scary to think that I had been drinking to excess (not every day or even every week but relatively often) for, like, 9 years. And I'm only 24. A big part of AA is acknowledging that you're addicted to alcohol and your life has become unmanageable. I don't think I saw it that way when I was drinking a lot, but I had lost my grasp on my life. My life HAD become unmanageable. It's only now with a clear mind that I see how fucked up my relationship with myself had become.
Sobriety has allowed me to build myself back up and examine what was there in the first place. That being said, I'm not "fixed." I am still incredibly flawed. I am still 100% human. With capacity for great things, yes. But also capacity to fall flat on my face and have to reckon with the realities of personhood.
Taking things one day at a time. I know that I won't drink today and I just have to wake up tomorrow and set my intention for the day and just continue on doing that again and again. Reminder to look back on this post and this landmark and remember how good I felt and how inspired I felt, if I decide to think about drinking again and to think I'm not an alcoholic anymore bc I'm "fixed."
Here are some little excerpts from my daily planner.
Day 87. Soul prompt: I feel close to life when... I make time for things that are rejuvenating.
Day 88. Soul prompt: My creativity... feels alive when I am talking to others about holistic remedies and mental health.
Day 89. Soul prompt: What in your life are you forcing?... I am trying to heal fast and all at once.
Hi! This weekend was pretty okay! Thankfully my fever/aches/chills/blah didn't go beyond Friday. Saturday: I slept in, took a two-ish mile walk with my dog around the lake, got a massage, watched Trolls with my mom and sisters. Honestly Trolls was so heartwarming. I loved all the power of positivity stuff. My mom was like, "uhhhhh this is a little happy for my taste." The massage absolutely kicked my ass. I was in a sleepy, relaxed daze for, like, 2 hours afterward. I couldn't even drive all the way home. I stopped at a coffee shop on the way home and just sat and chilled for a bit. I ran into some friends and barely remember what we talked about. Being that relaxed is actually kind of scary! Lol.
TODAY! I was on a productivity bender. I went to yoga, filed my taxes, categorized all my 2017 spending in my banking app, caught up on some work stuff that I missed while I was sick on Friday, made cookies, cleaned my bathtub, did the dishes, and watched an episode of Black Mirror (the new American season produced by Netflix). SO OKAY. I am not trying to hustle for my worthiness. But considering that some days I can't even get out of bed. This was kind of a huge day for me. I'm starting to come up for air after a particularly long depression spiral..... and it feels huge. I know that I'm still a worthwhile human when I'm not super productive, but damn! It feels so good to get things done every so often. I am grateful for the highs and lows.
Pretty isolated weekend, besides seeing my family briefly. But you know. That's okay. I needed some alone time to recharge and GSD (get shit doneeeeee).
Stayed home sick today. Which kinda sucks because I'm gonna have to work a bit this weekend. I was feverish, dizzy, achey, terrible sore throat. The works.
Definitely ate too much food today while trying to comfort myself. Also watched a lot of television and lived in like a half-nap daze. I don't get super sick very often, so crossing my fingers that I'll wake up feeling like a million bucks tomorrow.
Tomorrow I have plans to: go to yoga, get a massage and babysit. Should be a wild day! Lololol. Full grandma mode: activate.
Other goals for this weekend:
Go for a few long walks
Start my new book
Get the fuck off my phone
Start doing my taxes
Wish me luck!
I had a dinner party! It was quite nice! I made butternut squash soup, and whipped up some kale chips & little crostinis to garnish the soup. And I designed a little charcuterie board with two hard cheeses, a soft cheese, mustard, spicy jelly, spicy green beans, two types of cured meat, apples & pears. I think it was a success. I will put less brown sugar in the soup, next time. It was a sweet and spicy soup.
I find such joy in cooking and I like talking about ingredients and cooking methods. It is very interesting and exciting to me, and I notice a big difference in my ability to adapt in the kitchen as I gain more and more practice.
When I was drinking, I had my friends over for soup and we all had drinks over dinner. My friends left and I just kept drinking by myself. I often fixate on men when I've had too much to drink and I don't remember exactly how that night went but I'm pretty confident that I either invited someone over or stayed up late, softly crying and either texting or just stalking on my phone. Like, those were the two best options for me after a night of drinking by myself, long after the party ended. It just sounds so lame, in hindsight.
So tonight... after my sober dinner party, I finished up an episode of Great British Bake Off and headed to bed shortly after, feeling full of gratitude for my lovely ass friends. AND hung out with my dog. Like. Why does 'drinking me' not consider that option? The watch-a-half-hour-of-television-and-go-to-bed option? I think drinking just exacerbates my codependence.
When I'm sober, I sometimes feel that strong jolt of like. Wow. I'm lonely and I really want to kiss and/or hold someone and/or just have someone care about my day/me/etc. But the difference is that in sobriety I can support myself with a clear mind. I can let myself know that it's okay to want companionship or physical affection or whatever and that being open will allow those situations to arise again. And that it's okay if it doesn't happen, too. I love myself and I am enough, without any external validation. I'm definitely rambling but there is just something that's so different about processing loneliness in sobriety vs. in my old whiskey-soaked past. Joy feels deeper and pain feels more manageable, and those two things alone are pretty much enough to keep me sober.
Pretty uneventful day. Although, International Women's Day! Felt particularly inspired by a poetic quote by Rupi Kuar: "What's the greatest lesson a woman should learn? That since day one, she's already had everything she needs within herself. It's the world that convinced her she did not." I really want to take that to heart. Like, deeply. I am enough. I am enough. I am enough. I am whole. I am pure. I sort of think that the more I reinforce that sort of positive language, the more true it becomes to me on a fundamental level. And she states it in such a delicate and lovely way. It's truly beautiful.
I am coming down with some sort of cold so the day just kind of dragged on. I volunteered at the women's center after work (I do childcare once a week, usually in the infant room) and I was, like, a lump. I just wanted to melt into the couch. I also felt kind of guilty for still going in even though I didn't feel great. In hindsight, it's not very smart to go be around babies when you're feeling a cold coming on.
Then came home and watched a show with my roommate. We've been into that Big Little Lies show on HBO - it's kind of like, intriguing mom drama in the prep-school-but-for-elementary-aged-children realm. We are pretty much hooked, at this point.