Saturday, November 6, 2010

Addicted To Cycles

Why not live a comfortable life?  I'm serious.  Why is it that we, as addicts, let's say, seem to prefer drama?  Is it simply that we're trying to splay out our emotions on the canvas of relationships we've developed to see what the picture will look like when it comes back at us?  Do we need to have a side for every point of view, an angle that postulates, espouses, flies off the handle or hook with every utterance?  What's the difference?  Are we addicted to the chemicals that we ingest as well as the emotional situations they create because it provides a sense of purpose, and because that sense provides us something stable and knowable and pursuable, in short, something to react against?

I think it might be the case that sobriety presents a biochemical challenge as well as an emotional one: to reassign one's reactions to the backseat of the car, to silence their yelps when they cry out for control of the wheel.  To try to think and be calm and responsible and respectful even when you think you know just what is needed in a particular situation, even when you're absolutely sure of what is right.  Just stop for a minute.  What's the story you're telling yourself?  What are the reasons you provide for your actions?  Let's work hard to make the implicit explicit.  Just for the sake of being better informed about what's going on, even when it is ugly.  Even when we prefer an emotional rollarcoaster, let's stick to observing the traffic for a few minutes, here on this bench, just see what rolls on by before we get up to join the fray.    I guarantee that natural curiosity will surface.  


Anonymous said...

How sure are you that most alcoholics, or even a sizeable percentage of them, drink because they prefer drama? Most problem drinkers I know drink in order to cope with what they perceive as too much anxiety by numbing their minds a little. Alcohol is, after all, a depressant.

Like I said, I don't know what motivations are most prevalent on the whole, just making an observation based on a completely unrepresentative sample.

Off said...

That's a good point. I think you're mostly right, though I'd note that there might be a subtle and concrete way in which increasing drama might decrease anxiety. Not on a whole, mind you, but because perhaps that drama is known and recognizable and provides a sense of the familiar.