Life is good (in general)

It’s day 41 here – I had to find my phone to check on that. I was going to post for 5 weeks but I’ve been so busy getting into my creative work I didn’t get round to it.

Not everything is great, such is life. The company I work for has announced another large round of job cuts. My shift has survived this time but my job is definitely looking less secure each day. I’ve resolved not to worry about it. I have savings so losing my job would suck but it wouldn’t be an immediate emergency. If/when it happens I’ll worry about it then. I’ve spent far too much of my life worrying about stuff I can’t control – it never prevents anything and just wastes my time and energy.

I’m currently reading a book that is worth a mention here. I can’t remember how I stumbled upon it; maybe it was mentioned in a podcast or web article. It’s called Blessed Are The Weird by Jacob Nordby. I thought it sounded like my kind of book so I bought the kindle version and got stuck in. I’m only halfway through but I can already tell it’s one of those rare and precious gems that has the power to utterly transform a life.

Fairly close to the beginning this passage was the first of many to reach deep into my soul:

Where it all begins, I cannot say, this sense of being a stranger in a world full of people who seem to belong in it. All I know is that some of us are not like the others – something in us doesn’t fit.

Well hellloooo! The gems just keep coming:

The problem is the numbing.

The problem is that we have forgotten how to make our own lives works of art and we cannot seem to find enough ways to gorge ourselves to fill the aching sense of emptiness this leaves behind. Because we don’t know how to fill up the space of our lives with ourselves, we turn that job over to others and then wonder why we are never satisfied.

Does that sound familiar at all?

There is also a beautiful quote from the poet Mia Hollow:

Every now and again, you will feel a dull ache in your soul. A gentle humming around your heart. A longing for something without a name. If I ever told you to obey anything, this would be it. Listen to the call of your authentic self; that part of you that lives just outside your own skin. Let it have its way with you. I have died a hundred times trying to ignore it.

And I have drunk a hundred times (and the rest) trying to ignore the dull ache, and shoehorn myself into the socially agreed version of an acceptable life, career, drinking habits etc…

The book addresses many of the recurring issues that I struggle with myself and regularly read among other sober bloggers. A feeling of never quite finding our place in the world, social awkwardness, the tendency to isolate or that feeling of having missed the point somehow. I’ve always had a feeling of there being ‘something more’. On the very rare occasions I have voiced this I’ve often been made to feel ungrateful because although my life has had its fair share of ups and downs it has (in general) not been so bad. It’s not been bad enough to ‘justify’ developing a drinking problem, according to some.

I was tucked up in bed last night, reading in utter amazement as the book basically spelled out the story of my life. I realised that the lack of connection to my deeper creative soul is a big part of what I’ve been trying to drink away. Over time I became so disconnected that I couldn’t even remember what it was I was missing but I kept drinking anyway.

I was thinking about that illusory first drink and its misleading buzz that we chase over and over. It’s just a poor photocopy of the magic that we have forgotten can be found within – a photocopy degraded a thousand times. The magic is never going to be found in the drink, it’s all within ourselves and we all have it in our own ways. It’s the magic that we saw everywhere in the world as children but lost as we grew up. The hard part is remembering and reconnecting 😦

So, as you can probably tell, I’m quite excited about it all. I’d go as far as to say I think this book is going to do more to cement in some core foundations of sobriety than the many books I have read about quitting drinking.

I’m still running with the poetry that keeps popping into my mind. I’m going to combine it with the visuals that are forming too. It looks like illustrated poetry is going to be my ‘thing’. I’d never have predicted it but the more I focus on it the more I can feel the magic creeping back into life and the joy and excitement growing. I’ve been so busy and uplifted by turning towards these wonderful new things that I’ve gone long stretches of time forgetting that I’ve turned away from drinking. This definitely feels like a breakthrough in the right direction.

The sun is shining here even though it’s still cold. I love those first few times of feeling sunshine on my face after a long, dark winter. Gratitude for the small things feels good πŸ™‚

I hope you’re having a good week so far. Hugs to anybody struggling, keep going and keep writing – it doesn’t matter whether you’re on one year or one day, your sharing will be helping somebody out there x

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31 thoughts on “Life is good (in general)

  1. mikeykjr March 9, 2017 / 2:49 pm

    Putting it on my “Wish List – To Read” on Goodreads.com!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. habitdone March 9, 2017 / 3:01 pm

    I loved your post! I am at the opposite end of the spectrum, conformist to a fault perhaps. I’ve always looked at folks who dare to be different and wondered “why?” I liked what you wrote about as I know people who feel as you do. My best friend growing up was always wearing wild clothes, doing whatever she wanted. As a younger child I was embarrassed sometimes but then I realized she was just really brave and I may not be. I admire you for understanding and accepting your authentic self. I have no creative bone whatsoever. I love that you can do illustrations AND poetry. Wow. My 5 year old nephew just drew better art than I could ever aspire to. Lol. It seems like the more creative someone is, the more somewhat disconnected they can feel. Probably because the rest of us are trying to box everyone in. 😦 Sorry on behalf of all of “my” types! It takes ALL of us to make the world go around! Hugs and great job on day 41!!

    Liked by 2 people

    • tiredoftreadingwater March 9, 2017 / 6:54 pm

      Thank you! I guess there’s definitely no single personality type that struggles with alcohol. I’ve never felt like I’ve dared to be different or made a choice to be, I just have been by default. I’ve finally managed in my 40s to create the impression of being fairly normal, as long as I keep my mouth shut I don’t give myself away too often in the wrong situation :D.

      I bet you do have some creativity in you, it’s not always in the most obvious ways. Maybe it’s in the way you cook, or take photos, or arrange your house or any number of other ways. Drawing is a teachable skill too. Some people are naturally that way inclined but I also believe anybody can learn to draw if they want to – it’s a matter of training your right brain to see in certain ways.

      Thank you for your feedback and support, I appreciate it πŸ™‚

      Like

  3. Elizabeth March 9, 2017 / 4:29 pm

    Sounds like a must read for this weirdo. Thanks for the fantastic post, always being there for me with encouragement and spreading the “magic”! You hit it with this: “It’s the magic that we saw everywhere in the world as children but lost as we grew up. The hard part is remembering and reconnecting” ❀

    Liked by 3 people

  4. daisy4leafclover March 9, 2017 / 4:51 pm

    Great post, I am going to find this book now x

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Hurrahforcoffee March 9, 2017 / 6:59 pm

    Sounds like a really good book, I’m putting it on the list. I’ve had these glimpses lately when I’m doing something I love (designing, drawing etc) that I just feel ‘right’ It’s like my soul has slotted into a special groove. Did that even make sense? Whatever hope you sort of know what I mean ;)x

    Liked by 3 people

    • tiredoftreadingwater March 9, 2017 / 7:18 pm

      Yes, I think I know what you mean – sort of like a flow state with a bit of extra ‘something’ thrown in for good measure πŸ™‚ Those kinds of experiences are so much harder to connect with if we are dulled down by booze, the magic seems more likely to reappear when we get ‘clean’.

      What sort of stuff do you design and draw?

      I hope you enjoy the book x

      Liked by 1 person

      • Hurrahforcoffee March 9, 2017 / 10:38 pm

        Glad you got that from my gobbledegook πŸ˜‰
        All sorts, although I really want to start drawing something every day:) xx

        Liked by 1 person

  6. Untipsyteacher March 10, 2017 / 4:12 am

    Dear TOTW,
    I love the quotes from this book!
    My yoga teacher told me, when I was feeling different and wanting to be like someone else, that there was a “feast inside me”.
    But this book sounds perfect for me!
    Thank you!
    xo
    Wendy

    Liked by 1 person

    • tiredoftreadingwater March 10, 2017 / 5:03 am

      A ‘feast inside me’ sounds good, I’ve never heard anything like that before. Enjoy the book, I’m just glad I stumbled upon it by chance, I love it! Thank you for your lovely comment πŸ™‚ x

      Liked by 1 person

  7. tiredoftreadingwater March 10, 2017 / 5:09 am

    I just had an odd comment glitch here. The comment from soberisland that I’d already liked and replied to suddenly switched to waiting for approval and a lovely comment from sparkly sober I was in the process of replying to completely disappeared. No idea what happened there 😦 sparkly sober I did see your comment and thank you! sorry it vanished…

    Like

    • tiredoftreadingwater March 11, 2017 / 11:02 am

      Although I’m not doing 12 step in a structured sense myself, I can see exactly what you mean. There’s definitely something working through me when I’m doing my best creative work – it’s bigger than me.

      Like

      • Lamar Washington March 11, 2017 / 11:04 am

        Indeed. I have received much benefit from structured work with another alcoholic. I would recommend it to anyone.

        Liked by 2 people

  8. Paul S March 11, 2017 / 9:54 pm

    Yup! The first illusionary drink which leads to the second and third etc…all in the race to catch that elusive and ever-shrinking window of “I’m fine”. It’s the oasis which offers very little comfort the longer we did it. You are right about having lost our connection to ourselves (creative, spiritual, whatnot) and booze was a was of trying to fill it. And yes, social anxiety and all that shows itself, but the longer I stay at this, the more that stuff fades. I will never be a gregarious, outgoing guy, but I am not cowering in the corner, frozen to the floor like I used to be.

    Thanks for the book recommendation!

    Liked by 1 person

    • tiredoftreadingwater March 12, 2017 / 8:43 am

      I don’t really know where I’m at with the socialising, I indulge my ‘stay home and chill’ introvert side far more than my get out there and mix side. I’ll have to see how it goes over time. It sounds like you’ve made good progress there though.

      Enjoy the book! He has a podcast too πŸ˜€

      Liked by 1 person

  9. onthemend12 March 14, 2017 / 12:07 am

    That Mia Hollow quote though .. so needed to read that today. ❀ Thank you for your lovely words.

    Liked by 1 person

    • tiredoftreadingwater March 16, 2017 / 7:53 am

      Hi, and thank you very much. I’m happy that the right words found the right person at the right time πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

  10. shehidbehindtheglass March 14, 2017 / 6:33 pm

    Hadn’t even finished reading the quotes from the book before I had opened up a new tab with Amazon, found the book and added it to my cart. Thank you for the recommendation, it sounds PERFECT!
    ❀

    Liked by 1 person

    • tiredoftreadingwater March 16, 2017 / 7:55 am

      You’re very welcome, I’m glad to share the joy that this book has brought. The quick jump to amazon is exactly the sort of thing I would do too πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

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