I’m well into new territory now as this is the longest I’ve gone without alcohol since I was a teenager. 9 whole weeks! I partly feel like it’s been ages and partly feel like it’s flown by.
I’m feeling strong and positive today. I got up early and went for a 45 minute fast walk to get sweaty, get my blood pumping and start the day. The weather looks pretty promising and I have the rest of the week off so that’s all good. I’ve got plenty of ideas and plans for my artwork, decluttering and fermenting for the next few days and I’m definitely appreciating having what feels like a lot of sober, productive time at the moment.
My sauerkraut experiment is now on day 5 and it’s starting to smell like proper sauerkraut and not just like somebody farted while attempting to do the cabbage soup diet. I have an organic cucumber and some carrots hanging about in the kitchen so I might have a go at combining those into some sort of fermentable creation later today. I can feel a new hobby coming on 😀
I did a lot of thinking during my walk, mainly about sobriety and spirituality. I’m feeling different somehow at the moment and I’m not quite sure how to explain it. I’m reconnecting to a feeling I remember having as a child. Whenever unpleasant shit would happen in my life (such as bullying, parental illness, family financial problems etc) I would feel small, scared, sad or whatever negative expression came about but there was always a small light tucked away deep inside me that would feel, or know, or have faith that in the bigger picture everything would somehow be alright in the end. I’ve carried the memory of that feeling with me my whole life but now I think I’m actually experiencing the feeling again which is huge.
I’m not religious and neither was my upbringing although I’ve always had some sense of there being something ‘higher’ but no clear concept of what it is exactly. As it’s not something I’ve ever really talked about I’ve never felt the need to define it. There is much talk about a higher power in 12 step information and I like the concept that the individual can choose what form it takes. I’ve meditated for over 20 years using a set of phrases that give praise, gratitude and love to a ‘higher’ concept of the individual’s choosing. I’ve also had some pretty powerful and inexplicable changes in consciousness, either spontaneously for unknown reasons, through drug taking or through meditation…
I have a vivid memory of slipping into a different state of consciousness when I was still a child young enough to be looking out through cot bars. I recognised this state as familiar when I experimented with hallucinogens as a teenager and once again recognised it during an extreme altered state that was brought about through meditation in my 30s. The common theme that binds all these moments was the experience of being able to really feel and even see energy. I saw everything as being composed of sparkling motes of energy. Woah! now I sound like I’ve been drinking the Kool Aid don’t I?! Or maybe it’s whatever is off-gassing from the sauerkraut?!
What I began to theorize during my walk is that alcohol has been drowning out the small fire deep inside me and also damping down my energy into a much lower state than a human is capable of. When I read all this back it sounds so Woo Woo and mystical but that’s not really where I’m coming from. I get pretty skeptical when I hear people getting excited about something like ‘the secret’ and use it to try to attract themselves a fat salary and a new sports car. I do however keep coming back to energy as some form of attracting/repelling/higher force as a key part of my thoughts today. Um, what am I trying to say here?… focus…
I believe that there are many ways we can move ourselves towards a positive, uplifted, courageous, open minded, open to change/challenge and dare I say it, higher energy state. The content of our thoughts, the ways we breathe and move – or don’t move, the people with which we surround ourselves, the quality of our food and drink! are just a few that come to mind. Alcohol is most definitely not a part of this list. That romanticised moment of glistening glass in the sparkly sunshine will whisper that it is a route to a higher state until we play the film to the end when we’re laid low and bottomed out and we’ve given away our potential energy to the wine witch and spend the next day begging to have some of it back.
By the time I’d finished my walk I’d come up with a new thought/life experiment for myself. I’m offering up my life and sobriety to my concept of a higher power. This isn’t a blind faith, washing my hands of all responsiblity, sit back and let the world give me what I think I deserve kind of thing – far from it. I’ve vowed to be mindful of my thoughts as much as possible, to express gratitude daily, to eat well, exercise, be creative and always look ahead for the next right thing to do and be prepared to work hard for it. When I disappear into future fear or negative thinking I’ll come back to the present and reconnect with that part of me that knows that whatever heaven or hell life throws my way there will always just be the next right thing to do and any worrying I do about the future now is pointless as the next right thing is always now and not then. Oh yeah, and I won’t drink.
Well, now I’m a bit scared of publishing this in case you all think I’m a total weirdo 😀 Maybe I need to also make a vow to stop worrying so much about what people think of me. Have a lovely sober day everybody and if anybody is low on energy today I’ll send you some of mine, I seem to have some to spare today. Hugs x