I have been sneak attacked!
This morning my life seemed rosy and beautiful and happy. Everything has been snapping into place and I have been feeling more confident than ever in where my life is going. Why then have I been fighting off the urge to cry like a middle schooler who just got dumped all week? Seriously. It's all working out. My job is fabulous. My family is supportive. My money situation is looking up. I'm making friends and meaningful connections. It even appears that I have a place to live this coming summer. Yet I more often than not have been finding myself lying on my floor, legs and arms splayed out dramatically, eyes clenched shut, just needing to cry or, at times, needing to break something. Ooo! Breaking something... Yes. That sounds pretty damn good.
These moments sneak up and freak me out every time. Nothing seems to have happened before to make me think, "Okay. Now would be a great time to go throw a fit on the floor." Nope. I actually end up on the floor before I even realize I'm upset! What the hell? I am just really confused. I don't know where these emotions are coming from or why they flood me without warning.
I have been sober for two months now and feel great about it. I feel more present and patient with my family. I feel like I am finally coming into myself again. I'm just really freaked out by all of these intense and, at times, paralyzing, emotions.
Should I be calling someone when they creep up? Should I allow myself to break down, even if that means I would have to explain my bizarre display to my family? Should I be worried that this is happening? Is it normal? If it is normal, how long does it last? I just feel so clueless and confused.
Thanks and love,
I guess what a good friend told me yesterday is true. He said," You know you're human, right?" Damnit. However difficult that was for me to admit to myself, I am extremely grateful for being able to find the strength to ask for help. It's okay to need it. Another lesson learned.
Strength and Love,
To my dismay it was a rambling sob fest of a notice that my pay is going to be cut hourly by 8%. 8 PERCENT. That's nearly a dollar an hour less! Shit. Shit shit shit shit shit. I really started to second guess quitting my other job. Once the self-doubt started, it snowballed into a conversation with myself that included such choice words as: "Stupid", "Naive", and, "Man you really fucked yourself now!" Not only that, but they gave us this news in a brightly colored, glossy paged "memo" of deception and didn't even include coupons! They tell us that and couldn't find the decency to include a coupon for a free Blizzard at DQ?! I mean come on! What the fuck?! Talk about pouring salt in a wound.
As I just reminded you, I quit my job at the school. In turn, I was feeling pretty "on top of the world"-y about life. I should have known something like a pay cut was lurking around the corner, right? I mean isn't this type of situation the whole reason why I started this blog in the first place? That octopus was all cuddly and snug and was napping for quite awhile there! I should have been bracing myself for an arm or two to come around. So here they are! Those muscular, gleaming, sloppy arms that, today, are labeled "MONEY" and, naturally, "ALCOHOLISM".
Upon opening the memo and having my mild (okay, alright, maybe not-so-mild) freakout that was accompanied by the aforementioned hunger pangs and an anxiety ridden itch to drink, I reached out. Fortunately, I have people in my life who understand, and whom I feel comfortable to go to for support and advice and love. I texted a friend and let her know I was in a state of borderline melt down. What she said was simple yet rang so true:
"Things will work out. Trust your instincts, not your fears."
(Cue cleansing sigh of relief) How right she is. I quit at the school for many reasons. I trust those reasons and I trust the feelings of relief and happiness I experienced after I handed in my letter of resignation. How could I let a pay cut that I have absolutely no control over(Serenity Prayer anyone?) throw me into a tizzy?
"Trust your instincts, not your fears" is now on a post-it on my desk. I believe this simple saying would do us all some good if made our mantra. After pondering it for awhile I became painfully aware of how often I second guess myself. I would say that 95% of those second guesses come from fear. "Trust your instincts, not your fears", indeed!
Laughs and love,
Most seriously though, I have been losing my temper with my students. To understand exactly how alarming this is, you must know that I have been told a LOT how much people admire how patient I am with them. I pride myself on how patient and, well, not to toot my own horn but, "Toot!", almost goddamn saintly I am when it comes to my endless patience. (It is a virtue after all.) For me to be getting angry so quickly is awful. Luckily, this not so great change has lead into one of my good ones! (See? Didn't I tell you I wouldn't dwell?)
I quit my job at the school. I handed in my letter of resignation yesterday without hesitation. Not having alcohol to go to as a release, as a pain and sadness numbing tool, I realized I had to try my damndest to get happy fast if I had any hope of remaining sober. Quitting my job will allow me to focus more on my habilitation and respite clients. I will also have much more time to write, read, be with myself, and find myself again.
While drinking, I forgot who I was, who I am, and who I want to be. I love to write! I love to read! I love hanging out with my true self! I love not being afraid to find the humor in shitty situations! Without those parts of my life I was miserable (not to mention I was starting to get the personality of a kitchen sponge; and I'm not talkin' the squarepants kind either).
Alcohol dulled the unhappiness, yes. At times it even seemed to make it disappear. When I did away with it I meditated, I prayed, I talked openly and honestly with people (something that is still extremely hard for me). Through that I am sitting at my computer and writing. I am buying book after book and reading like mad. I quit my job and am looking forward to the quality time that will give me with myself. I am starting to crack jokes even if some might find them tasteless because you know what? If you don't think I'm as hilarious as I think I am, then I don't want to hang out with you anyway.
Quitting drinking is helping me get ME back.
I understand that I am only a month and some odd days into this scary, daunting process. I understand that it's good today but may not be tomorrow, a week from now, a month from now. I do. What I am doing is simply celebrating today. Today is good. I am here. I am present. And if tomorrow happens to be complete dog shit? Well, I will be there and present, too. And for that I am grateful.
Love and Light,