Lately life, with every up and down, kindles in me the desire for a drink.
It’s not as cut and dry as just alcoholism.
It’s not just wanting a drink for the rum’s sake, not just the liberation of carefree numb.
It’s wanting to be normal.
It’s a longing for escape, but not the expected kind involving a hangover; it’s longing for an escape from being different from the rest, from standing out.
It’s not addiction; it’s alienation.
It’s not that I want a drink, it’s that I want to fit in.
Alcohol is everywhere. It is everywhere. It’s not just in store coolers and bar room windows. It’s not just in television commercials. It is in nearly every conversation, in almost every invite. It is in most great stories and in many anticipations. Alcohol is everywhere. It’s out making new friends, buying new clothes, and planning exotic vacations while Alcoholism, well, isn’t.
I remember a different me. It’s possible the me I remember isn’t actually who I was, but I remember a bright crowd of laughing friends, seemingly endless adventures, and anticipation for things to come. I remember, of course, that there were days long hangovers and heart wrenching dramas; near misses and close calls. I remember all of the reasons that I can’t go back there, but I also remember that it wasn’t always a terrible place to be.
I thought the farther away I got from the scene I left behind, the farther removed I’d be from the lifestyles of alcohol. I thought that it was just me that looked intently forward to a drink at the end of the work day. I thought I was the only one who believed life was better with a drink or two, or, at the very least, that I was. I was wrong; it’s not just me, it’s everywhere.
Instead of feeling comforted by this realization, I feel isolated.
It feels like everyone has a comfort food but me.
Where’s my apple pie?
Let me be clear: I don’t want to have a drink, I want to have a substitute.
Well, that’s not entirely true. I do want to have a drink, I don’t want to have a relapse.
While others are making new friends in the comfort of nerves-softening beer, unwinding at the end of a hard day with a warming red wine, or marking celebrations with a risen glass, I… well, I’m at home playing mommy… and remembering who I used to be.
- A few words from a non-practicing alcoholic (risingwoman.wordpress.com)