Thursday, September 23, 2010

Almost Three Months Sober: Quarterly Report

So, how hard has it been to stay sober? Luckily, I have a lot to accomplish. I don't always want to do it, but I'm not always faced with excruciating amounts of time to wade through. I'd definitely be drinking if that were the case.  Drinking is a short cut toward immediate satisfaction, or a precursor to establishing something creative, or a reason to talk to someone, or fantasy.  It allowed me to live in a bit of distance from myself while pontificating about how much I knew about myself.  I'm not yet "free" to have a drink, in this self-imposed prohibition state, but I will be one day, and if I had chosen three months instead of a year, that day would be Sunday.  At any rate, it is easier to stay sober if you feel like you will have a drink one day, and it is harder to stay sober if you think about the rest of your life, which might just as well be infinity in that it is hard to grasp and even harder to conceptualize, making the ideal of complete and timeless sobriety a fantasy in itself.

I won't delude myself about that fact.  I like to romanticize ideas and then bask in them as if that's all that's necessary to become part of the idea and have it take me away into a netherworld of perfect balance--and that when I get to that world, it will be exciting.  Turns out that life isn't exciting, not all the time.  Are the exciting moments more exciting than they would be if I didn't have boring moments?  That's not a question I'm prepared to ask because I can't compare my own excitement to excitement in the past.  It is different, and I'm working on different goals now.  The less I think about drinking as a goal, though, and the less I think about accomplishment and pressure toward something that is known and identifiable and concrete, as much stability as those thoughts might provide, the more relaxed I feel.  I won't feel relaxed everywhere I go, or at the beginning of a social outing, but I will get there, and not much slower than alcohol induced getting there would have propelled me.  The ideal is to be at a state wherein drinking isn't something to think about and the product of my not thinking is moderate in scope--i.e. I don't drink more than a few drinks every few days.  Dangerous, I know, and I'm not going to try it yet, of course, as I have another three quarters to go at least, and I'll only know when I get there because of the lack of major disruption.. etc.  There's a risk, as always, and I don't even mean to write this much about the state I'll get to after I continue to not drink, if that makes sense, but it is perhaps an outgrowth of the current reality that finds me stretched between immediate anxiety and long term growth.   Maybe I should really be asking this question: So, how easy is it to drink?  

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