It feels really good to be sober.
Lately I’ve been navigating through an ocean of hurt feelings and resentment, and drinking has made it impossible to manage it or see it clearly.
The emotions have all been real, but being drunk amplifies them and at the same time doesn’t expose the truth of them. They’re loud, but unintelligible.
I guess when the captain of the ship is wasted, you just sail around in circles.
This year, I lost someone who I considered both my best friend and my sister. She’s not dead, she’s just not here. I wanted to not care, or hate her even, but I can’t. That’s all I’m going to say about her right now. It’s a melancholy tale for another time.
Some background so that this story makes a little more sense – I’ve just quit my job, so I’m in between jobs for the second time this year. Unemployed, no hobbies that really consume me enough to distract me, a very sparse social life due to the typical mid-20’s phenomenon called “growing apart” (AKA having kids, lol jk, but not really), and an irrational fear of befriending new people. Obviously, I’m a catch, and doing awesome in life.
I’ve been in one of those annoying on-and-off relationships for about two years. He’d lie or piss me off somehow, I’d dump him, he’d get tired of the responsibilities of attachment, he’d dump me. It was hard then, but at least for me, it wasn’t the end of the world, in part because we’d always get back together. I also had friends and school and just in general other things to think about that were more important.
Suddenly, the on and off again became brutally, unbearably hard. Every time the off switch was flipped, I lost my mind and felt completely crushed. I drank like a fish, I did crazy things to get his attention, I broke and smashed things, I even threatened suicide. I’ve been in a really bad place. Every time I would act like that, I felt worse afterward. It was a never-ending shit show, and I’ve never been so exhausted and ashamed for such an extended period of time in my entire life.
It took me until now, after yet another who-knows-how-many-times-it’s-been break up, but this time, enduring it sober, to realize what I had done. I replaced her with him. It became so much harder because he isn’t just my boyfriend anymore, he’s been my closest friend and I’ve relied on him in the same way I used to rely on her. Unlike my relationship with her though, my relationship with him has been riddled with trust issues and miscommunication for a long time, and on top of that, he wasn’t relying on me for friendship in the same way. I changed my expectations, but the relationship was still the same as it had always been, I just added a little more pressure. Talk about a recipe for disaster.
What’s weird is, when it happened, I cried, and felt just as devastated as usual (although with more inhibition), and then I looked up at the sky, in a way I rarely do, and asked for “God.” I put the word God in quotes because I’ve never been sure if there is a God, so it’s not meant to be disrespectful. I still capitalized it.
Anyway, there’s this raw vulnerability and intense desperation when someone who doesn’t consider themselves religious in any way whatsoever says “God, please help me,” and means it.
After I said that, instead of the lately-typical lashing out, threatening him, or trying to make him feel guilty for abandoning me, I explained to him that I wasn’t angry. I explained how I was just sad to keep losing my best friend, over and over again. The words were just coming out in the clearest and most sincere way I’ve ever texted (lol), but seriously. I felt honest and vulnerable, but there was this profound strength in it. I didn’t care if it made me seem like the “weaker” person to admit that I’m sad to lose him, because he’s someone I’ve considered a friend, and he’s been the closest friend to me for a while now, and it fucking hurts. There was something powerful about choosing not to be hateful, and just accepting how I felt without turning into a drunk mess over it.
I’m still sad, and that’s okay. Even if I’m crying, it felt so good to speak my truth, and finally say what I had been trying to say all along. There’s something about what I did, even if it seems insignificant, that changed and clarified my perspective in the best possible way. Depending on your philosophy of choice, I had help from above, or I found the inner strength to connect to my higher self. Whether talking to “God” is really communicating to a higher being, or if it’s just asking the “God” within yourself to find comfort and solace amidst all the messes and miseries of life, it doesn’t really matter.
I refuse to boil all of this down to some watered down “it works if you work it” bullshit, so I’ll just say… let go and let “God.”