When I was a heavy drinker, I lacked real feelings and moods. When I was drunk, I was relaxed and happy. When I was hungover, I was depressed and anxious. And when I was neither, I was exhausted. Nothing in between.
As I am getting further away from the booze, I am slowly getting back to myself. It is confusing. And exciting. And sometimes terrifying. I have a brain that never shuts the fuck up. In fact, more often than not, that is why I drank. My body constantly flowed nervous energy and my mind moved so quickly. It was exhausting trying to keep up. Booze slowed me down. It shut my mind up. It was a break from myself.
Then when that wore off, it was like my mind was mad that I had shut it down. My thoughts came back full force. And they often brought anxiety and sad thoughts with them. I would feel like shit about myself every time. Over years, I learned how to ignore those thoughts, but that didn’t make them go away.
There it is, I have a brain that demands attention and it sometimes drives me crazy. I have a hard time relaxing. I have a hard time living in the moment and being happy. Self medicating is a temporary answer. Whether you choose booze, food or drugs, it will not last or cure you.
So I write. I have small thoughts and I let them form into bigger thoughts. Then I write it all down. I let my thoughts organize themselves and I get them out of my fucking head. Then they make sense. It is my therapy. It is amazing how relaxed I feel after writing.
I exercise. When you drink as much as I did, your body stops making endorphin’s. Endorphin’s are the chemical in your brain that tell you that your happy. I have read studies that say that people who are prone to drug and alcohol abuse lacked the ability to produce endorphin’s long before their addiction. Other studies say that the using made our brains forget how to make them. For me it really doesn’t matter what caused what, I just know that I have to make them. And the best sober way to make them, is to get my ass moving.
And the most difficult, rewarding and scary part of this whole tprocess is listening to myself and actually feeling my emotions. When I’m happy, my instinct is to be worried that everything will go bad. When I’m having a bad day, My instinct tells me that this may be as good as it gets. The biggest challenge of getting sober is letting yourself have feelings that you have been running from for years. That’s why my mind never shuts ups. I have been ignoring it for so long, it will not tolerate not being heard. Fear will motivate me. Loneliness will let me listen to myself. Each thought and feeling is teaching me how to live again. Every step forward is a positive one, I am finally making peace with myself.