The thing that keeps coming up for me... is how much easier it is to handle bad news or shitty situations. I got my feelings hurt really badly tonight and it was fine.
I'm trying to keep same mentality in mind for work. I feel super inadequate a lot. I'm going to start applying for grad school this winter, which is a huge step and I'm really looking forward to. Sometimes it's okay to just remember that where you're at is temporary. I can and will and am doing great things. I am enough. But also, I am abundant and ambitious and capable and ready to make great changes and move in new directions. I think it's good to be both enough and ready for more.
Noooot sure if I gave myself food poisoning or if I got a stomach bug. But I was miserable allllll day. Woke up in the middle of the night and puked for over an hour. So terrible. It's weird to not puke because of alcohol poisoning. It really felt like there were a bunch of dudes sword-fighting in my belly though.
I finished Olive Kitteridge and watched the full third season of Grace and Frankie. Olive Kitteridge is an HBO mini series based on a book. It's based on a woman who lives in Maine who battles with a history of depression and you get to see a lot of stages of death and mental illness within. France MacDormand stars and she's phenomenal. It is a little glib about suicide and death, so I would just keep that in mind before watching – if that's something that would trigger you. But I thought it was beautifully shot and pretty much all around superb. Grace and Frankie is delightful too – it's about two ladies in their 70s who become best friends after their husbands leave them for each other. This season they are becoming vibrator entrepreneurs. They made a special vibrator for ladies who have arthritis and it's seriously so funny and smart. Loved all three seasons.
I decided to stay in and start an HBO mini-series called Olive Kitteridge tonight. We were going to have book club but the ladies have been super busy lately. It was no big deal.
Work has been kinda hard. I feel like I can't keep up with the workload and it's hard to stay engaged. So, I think I need to guide a little energy there.
My dog is resting on my legs, and I'm slouchin' on the couch. I have noticed that I get reaaaaal depressed after 11pm-ish. My mind gets lonely! This is the time I creep my ex. But I have to do it in an incognito tab because he blocked me. Maybe admitting it here will give me the strength to stop and realize how absurd I'm being. But I do often try to think about it with the same "one day at a time mentality." Like, just don't look or don't think about it or don't reach out, just for today. I think it's helping... weening off emotional dependence, in the same way I am trying to ween off of dependence on substances. I also bought a book about codependence that my therapist recommended to me. We'll see if that helps.
The most fucked up thing is that I can *feeeeeel* the emotional pang and desire to reach out and I *knoooooow* that Drunk Zoey would call. Like, I feel the moment where a less stable me would be thrown totally off-kilter. Would cry. Would call again. Would call seven times. Would leave voicemails, with slurred speech and indulgent pleas and obnoxious apologies. Just like, so very little self esteem. So ya know. I need to give myself credit for the areas I've grown. Four months ago - I was not coping in a healthy way. I was exacerbating the wounds. I was being very disrespectful of boundaries. I have a lot of room for improvement but I do want to acknowledge that some strides have been made.
I did have a very good night though. I volunteered at the women's center and then went to a house show. I saw my friend perform and she has new songs that I really connected with. Her project is called Squirrel Flower... and especially the song "Not Your Prey" is just gorgeous. Here is a Spotify link. She describes the songs on the album as being "about vulnerability, independence/dependence, having a female body, and overcoming different sorts of physical and abstract fear." So it makes sense that I feel them in my bones. I feel humbled by these songs. Also, we got to lay on the floor for the show and one of the artists made cookies. The second band/project had a beautiful projection on the ceiling and a lot of the lyrics were about loving yourself on bad days and knowing you're worthy of love. The universe had my back on that one.
I had a few moments of intense joy where I squeezed my whole self in tight and squealed a little. My emotions were all over the place tonight. At least I was clear/present to feel them all.
Beyond obsessing over my ex, I also have anxiety about this other person. Pretty much I assume if someone sleeps with me - they sort of hate me and don't respect me. I really need to do an inventory of what's going on in my brain and lead with love and honesty. And live with intention. I don't want to discount myself and I don't want to continue these fucked up emotional patterns in sobriety. That's why I'm doing this - to radically change my experiences + to have joy. I feel like because I've had such bad experiences with men in the past, I automatically think that anyone who is sweet to me is lying or really thinks I'm bad. Agh, I want to go into more details but it's just too personal. Let's get coffee and I can just spill my guts even more.
Also - I went to this stand up comedy thing a few weeks ago and the comedian made a joke about how people only make blogs when no one in real life will listen to them. lollllllll. But seriously, sometimes it feels so odd to just throw out all my thoughts onto the internet and it has meant so much when friends/strangers have reached out to me and started a dialogue about whatever spoke to them. Please feel free to comment or email me or whatever.
I'm gonna go to bed now. Try to level out this up-n-down brain space. Xo
I recently looked back on old photos where I was drunk or drinking. My eyes were pretty much always half-closed and I was pretty much always making a half-scowl. I'm attaching a side by side photo thing below. I'm not scowling in the drunk picture but I'm definitely lacking some life in the eyes. I don't necessarily think that it's bad for people to let loose or do what they want, but for me - letting loose and doing what I wanted was p much just numbing all my feelings. I had no self-esteem. Like, even a little bit. I like the sober selfie though. I was particularly happy that day. I have some sad eye sober selfies now but not the same vacancy.
I feel a lot more whole, even though I'm dealing with a lot of the same issues I was then. I just feel more like... a person... again. It's really hard to explain in a way that's succinct and makes sense. I will try to articulate better in future posts. I know it's not a super drastic before/after but the girl on the left got wasted and said mean things to her boyfriend over the phone and the girl on the right when to a hip hop show and made meaningful memories and connections with dear friends. It's just a whole different state of being. And a deeper ability to be present / engage / feel sad, too, if that's what's up. Looking at some drunk Zoey pics did help a lil bit, cuz I've been feeling insecure a little in my sobriety the past week or so. Little reminders keep us on the path.
How strange things have been lately. Feeling strong but also scared and vulnerable and tender and angry. There's been a lot to process. I am scared for 365 days to come and go and to see where I am. I'm anxious for the future to happen. I'm determined to be present and listen to my body. I have so much work to do, on many levels. Feeling overwhelmed. I want to feel overwhelmed with gratitude vs bursting w anxiety and barely keeping it all together. But again, it's a process.
A guy I am sort of interested in asked me about my sobriety last night and I found it harder than normal to point to reasons *why* ... especially the farther I get from my original decision to be sober. I think I told him something about how my depression got super bad and drinking was fucking up my psych meds. But I also said... it's just cuz I wanna. Which is also true. But I think it would be easier to date or like, instigate events without inhibitions. I think this is me trying to flee from having real feelings. Like, why can't I do things romantically with a clear mind? Am I just super duper not ready? I think I just know that if I were drinking - I'd probably already have propelled myself into dating or a hook up or something and it's weird to see how shy and reserved and cautious I can be without that catalyst. I think it's a good thing but I can definitely feel every ounce of my being trying to revert to old habits.
Four months came and went! I went to a movie last night and tonight (gifted and fate of the furious) and also last night my dog peed in my bed. Eventful!
Coming up on another month. Starting to settle back into day-to-day life. Mission Creek (the festival I went to) kind of knocked me off kilter, a bit. I need to set some goals for the week and try to stay present. I have a LOT of reading and studying I want to do. Gonna need to cut down on screen time to make that happen.
And, my journal has been untouched for two weeks. Although I did find time last Sunday to write some songs and the week before to write some short essay / poem type things. So! That has been really great and cathartic. Gonna pick back up with my daily bullet journal – it always feels good when I commit to it
Today I did laundry, cleaned a bit, got some household items at the store, hung out with family, napped, ate soup. I feel a little bad because I was kind of outwardly stressed/irritated with my family today and I was a little bit more of a diva than I meant to be. I am less scared to be vocal when something upsets me lately, which I think is good. I don't necessarily think I was a jerk, but... I don't know. I have guilt issue things. I want to be vocal about my feelings without being The Worst. I was able to bounce back but I got very overwhelmed for a minute. A similar thing happened on Saturday AM when my family didn't pick me up on time. It made me very upset when I felt like I wasn't kept in the loop / being communicated with. I'm glad I can feel feelings but I guess I want to let things go more easily and be more okay going with the flow. It's all a process.
Tomorrow is four months. I feel really proud.
Invalidated by men in my family twice today, was challenged re: my education and my sobriety. I am a strong ass woman and a smart ass woman. Not today Satan.
Almost four months sober. Heard someone say that there is a spiritual defense against the first drink but no defense against the second. I'm pretty committed to keeping my hands clean and the lights on bright.
Lots is happening in my family and personal life but I feel able to take it day by day and find ways to manage it all.
It's been pretty odd - I can feel the physical urge to drink really strongly at times, especially after a bout of stress or anxiety. It's just a deep sense of wanting to ..... flee. I wanna escape and leave my body. It's been so hard and strange to stay firmly in my body and to fully experience it all.
Last week in AA someone mentioned that they drank to turn the lights off and now they like to keep the lights pretty bright. And I relate to that deeply. I want to be clear and to be fully present. The hardest part of sobriety is just feeling like a bag of trash for not coming to it sooner. And I guess I'm still afraid of relapsing and fucking up again. That would be the second hardest part, for me. Right now.
I feel so grateful and so scared all at once. Sobriety feels fragile, like it could all go to shit pretty quickly. So. Wish me luck! Lololololol