The only solution I knew was “to drink,” I hear it in meetings all the time, I drank when I was happy, sad and whenever anything came up that I couldn’t handle. My “go to” was a cold Rolling Rock or later on it could have been a warm one. And even more later on, beer didn’t smooth over the edges like it used to, so I turned to vodka. Crafting the perfect buzz became an artform.
Sobriety hasn’t been a walk in the park. Life has happened. Old timers say, “Life of Life’s Terms.” I really never knew what it meant until I realized what life really was. What life really meant.
I have mentioned in this blog that my father died. I have mentioned that we had a strained relationship, but in the end, I was still “Daddy’s girl.” He was a dying dry drunk and I was a little over a year in the program. When he was dying, I didn’t drink. Sometimes it was difficult because it really hurt. I finally realized that it has been feelings that have made me choose drinking as my coping mechanism.
Happy, Sad, Angry, Glad
Sure I laugh, I cry just like everyone else but it was the nuances of feelings that I never “sat” through, never understood what they were or how they felt, truly. I always acted like I felt them, but I didn’t really know them. When I stopped drinking !P!O!W! there they were, waiting to be dealt with and when I first stopped drinking they were more intense than ever. If it wasn’t for meetings, the fellowship, and my sponsor I more than likely would have drank before I figured this out. It was meditation and the pain of sitting in a room full of people that caused me to SIT there and feel them. There was lots of crying afterward. I still meditate but hardly ever cry.
Coming Clean and Feeling
My counselor offered up the idea that I am empathetic and often take on other people’s feelings without even knowing it. I often absorb things just because someone else is feeling it and I can sense it. I think many alcoholics and addicts are like this, we take on feelings that other people are experiencing and don’t know what to do with them. Not long ago I sucked them all in, got overwhelmed and drank to ease everyone’s pain because I didn’t know what else to do.
Without the anesthesia of alcohol and with the help of my support system, I can see the feelings from afar. I can acknowledge which feelings are mine and which ones are not.
I can better help others if I don’t choose to drown myself in their feelings or alcohol ~funny how that works.