Humming along…is the party over?

25 Sep

1:04 am

Nothing huge going on here. Which, in a sense, is good. Day 4, people.

I’m finally over my hangover (took at least two days; Jesus). I worked a little, and got into it (a little) with my editor (which makes me nervous, mainly because I don’t have that much alternate income at the moment). I checked out some new glasses frames (to recover the ones I broke; I do things like, buy the same version of what I lost, broke, or demolished while blacked out to make me feel like it didn’t happen — am I alone in this neurotic behavior?). I went to my final contact lens fitting. I sank into a mini-depression the past 24 hours but pulled myself out. I activated my superpowers. I managed to offload/sell a lot of my remaining SHIT today, including some kitchenware to a nice Jordanian woman and to a shy French boy; now, it’s just the bed (I’ve got a potential buyer tomorrow, after which, I’ll run to REI and get another sleeping mat). I talked with both my mom and dad and made plans to visit each en route to the [beautiful island where I now live] next month. I oven-baked some pretty awesome potatoes. As I was talking to my dad, I overheard the football game in the background and was like, OK, that’s enough football for me for the season. ๐Ÿ˜‰

I’m ready to move, but I’m also feeling…many things that cause me anxiety. (I would usually drink at this point, for sure.) What, pray tell?

1. The [cold west coast city sex street fair]. While it was refreshing to see everyone celebrating sex so openly, that event stirs up some of my past here and makes me feel quite empty. But, more than that, everyone was fucked up. FUCKED UP. Booze, “G,” “E,” you name it. I was like, I can’t even be here, I’m so sober. I want to be cool with this, but I can’t. I felt so uncomfortable, so square. It was all in my head, and had more to do with the fact that I was there alone — again — but…yeah. Minor, but enough to cause me to overthink, and then, want to drink. I didn’t, though. Seeing people stumbling around in their underwear (literally), in the freezing cold 55-degree weather, barely conscious made me go, Hmm, now THAT does not resemble fun, and I’m really glad I’m not you.

2. I think I often feel judged and unaccomplished by my family. Why aren’t you with man/with child yet? Why have you never brought a guy home to us? Why have you never invited us over and/or cooked for us? (Well, I have, but in the larger sense: why are you not settled down beyond having roommates and dating the wrong guys/no guys?) These are much more likely questions I ask myself, and when they make me feel too scared or nervous, I drink. Drank.

2. The whole brother’s girlfriend thing, which makes me think of both my brothers. Are they happy? Moreover, should I be helping the one (more financially well off) more with banking away some money for my mom? She is on Social Security now, but up until a few weeks ago, she was working. At 66, she’s that uncomfortable with her retirement nest egg (none) that she still HAS (not wants) to work! She has arthritis in her hip and pretty severe osteoporosis, so it’s highly likely we’ll all have to chip in and buy her a home one day soon. Is my “taking some time off for me” a selfish thing to do, when I am 38 and in the prime of my professional earning capacity? It is. And, it bothers me.

The problem is, I TRIED working a “big bucks” job in “the Valley” AGAIN, and I hated it, AGAIN. And, it caused me so much grief to be doing something so passionless that I drank. All the time. Even at work. Doh.

And, now that I’ve gotten away from that life, and tasted something more relaxed…I can barely stomach a return to the grind, even one that’s “fun.” I worry, fret, worry, fret. Am I too old to go back to [cold east coast city] and work in the publishing industry? Do I want to? Can I fake it if I don’t want to? Can I handle it and the stress sans wine? Plus, I don’t want to sit on my ass all day, every day anymore.

I wish it was easy for me to have faith that I can earn a living doing what I’m passionate about. To that end, I can dream. And so, I’ve proactively come up with a few alternate careers to dream about: professional dog walker, cake baker, rare gem collector, field anthropologist, acupuncturist? ๐Ÿ˜‰

I’m excited about moving (and moving on), and I don’t have to think about being productive, financially and professionally — not yet. I DON’T HAVE TO — right now. But, I will, in December or January or February, or whenever the money starts running out and I look at my grad school student loan debt and think, Oh, FUCKING HELLO. Or, I turn around and there it is again, the need to earn savings for myself, my future, my mother’s future…

It’s SO MUCH EASIER to avoid this fretting and worrying with wine. It makes me sad, in a very vague way. Life isn’t happy-go-lucky. The party IS over.

Or, is it?

2 Responses to “Humming along…is the party over?”

  1. Al K Hall September 25, 2012 at 11:44 am #

    Man, i so get your issues! i myself worked a lot in the State of Denial, capital of the Procrasti-Nation and booze just made it that much easier. i kept hitting Pause on everything… finances, personal relationships, fatherhood, work and my drinking. i drank to forget i had a drinking problem and whenever that problem reared its ugly head, i drank that much more. What helped when i got sober was to write a list of all my problems (kind of like you’ve done here), prioritize them and, beginning with the most pressing, write a step by step list of things to do to eliminate them. Watching that list shrink (after an initial expansion as i kept remembering additional problems!) was one of the main pleasures in early recovery. Keep up the good work!

  2. Lisa Neumann September 25, 2012 at 1:34 pm #

    Related to it all, starting with the “break-and-replace” … All of us (not just addicts) are on autopilot to the tune of 80% of the day (that’s a stat btw, I didn’t just make this sh*t up). The way of recovery for me is to change the autopilot programming. Party is definitely NOT over … just very, very different.. In case no one has mentioned it, you’re an excellent writer. Thanks for letting me follow.

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