I can’t believe it’s day 14 already. I’ve been busy at work as we’re short staffed due to sickness. Then I got a mysterious pain in my side. It wasn’t quite bad enough to be called severe but it did have me on painkillers and scrunched up on the sofa feeling sorry for myself for a couple of days. It has now (thankfully) mysteriously disappeared again. If I’d still been drinking I’d have been paranoid about my liver.
I’m still processing the shifts that have started happening since that dark/light day 2 weeks ago. I’ve been thinking a lot about surrender and the times in my life I’ve found peace through it. It’s brought up a lot of interesting, and funny memories. More about those later.
The feeling I have now reminds me a lot of the feeling I had when I finally let myself move on from my old career. I had the degree, the years of experience, the important sounding job titles, the fat pay, the excessive after-work socialising blah blah etc. My ego ran a mile with it all and told me that my life was good. Friends, family and colleagues all agreed. From the outside it looked that way and ticked the boxes that society told me I was supposed to tick. On the inside I was empty, lonely, unfulfilled, feeling like I’d hugely missed the point somewhere. I was drinking heavily and daily to not to have to feel or face any of it.
I ended up backing myself into a corner where I’d drifted away from from the career but not let go of the associated beliefs and baggage that had become my false identity. I wasn’t working and just subsisted in confusion for ages. I couldn’t go back but I had so many confused beliefs about myself that were getting in the way of me moving on and applying for jobs that were ‘beneath’ me. People told me I was crazy, deluded and ungrateful to even consider dropping out.
Eventually I found the sense and strength to listen to myself. I was also broke. I have a vivid memory of the day I first applied for a retail job. I’d dropped the application form off in person and was driving home. It was a sunny autumn day and whilst waiting at a red light I gazed at a bright blue sky through a blazing display of leaves. I suddenly had a huge rush of euphoric relief and a manic grin. I could almost hear the ‘thunk’ of heavy baggage hitting the road as I drove away and left it behind. It was one of those moments that imprints like a flash photo on your brain.
Although I haven’t had any euphoric rushes this time I do feel that familiar sense of lightness. Maybe I managed to drop off the first few bits of booze baggage? I know the dangers of getting overconfident though and can see the huge suitcases still waiting to be unpacked – one step at a time.
At the moment I have no desire to drink at all. Over the last couple of weeks I have had occasional moments of my red flag restlessness. What has been interesting and encouraging is that my mind hasn’t retreated towards thoughts of drinking during these moments. It has instead stepped up to look for more constructive ‘what can I do about this’ solutions. I think that’s progress 🙂
When I’m not working I’m alternating between lazy indulgent sofa sessions of reading, gaming or snoozing and more constructive stuff. I’m currently doing a couple of free online courses. One is in photography and one is in philosophy and critical thinking. My mood is subtly shifting toward lightness, hope, brightness, gratitude and a gentle excitement about what the future could bring. Bring it on! 😀
I hope everybody has had a good sober week and is looking forward to the weekend. Hugs to anybody struggling at the moment x