I was washing the crock pot at the sink the other day. As usual I was hurried, frustrated that it was taking so long. All of the sudden I realized what I was doing: washing a crock pot. On my day off. With nothing to do all day. Why in the heck was I all bent out of shape? Then I realized that wait....this is my default setting. I am always anxious to get on to the next thing. Always doing a mental work up of a situation or event.
It came as a total shock to me that I am so anxious all the time. I had no idea. But as soon as I recognized it my whole self was like BUSTED!!!! And I had a good laugh at myself and adjusted the water temperature, added a dab more soap to make bubbles and took my time scrubbing up that pot.
I think it comes from living a childhood where my parents fought all the time. They started fighting when I was in mid fourth grade (when we moved to a place my mom quickly grew to hate from a place we all loved) until we moved away from that hated place the summer before my senior year of high school. I always wanted to be able to fix it, so I was always on edge- on the lookout for the solution that would make everyone happy and please not fight anymore. This is still me today- tensely watching for any sign of disruption or disturbance so I can prevent it from happening. But I didn't know that until the other day when the crock pot showed me the light.
This makes it hard for me to get absorbed in things, or even lose track of time. It makes it hard to enjoy things because what if I start having fun and someone else isn't and then they get upset and wreck it for everyone but if I was just watching I could have stopped it? It doesn't make sense but these things often don't. I can only start to make sense of them when they come out from under the bed and into the light. "Oh, here" say my brains. "Did you know that you do this?" "Oh" says me. "I didn't but damn. That kind of explains a lot."
So much of my "stuff" is from when I was a kid. It's like I have all these loose ends that never got tied up. Slowly but surely I'm catching ends and wrapping things up. One thing I could never do when I was drinking was learn a lesson and then move on.
I don't think much about sobriety anymore. It's just something that I am. But without it these revelations wouldn't happen. Because I'm sober I can now see that one of the reasons I drank was to sedate my anxiety. If I was wasted I couldn't care less about what was going on, I didn't have to worry if anyone was upset, or fighting, or not having fun. I really didn't know if I was even having fun. I like the way these things pop up- unpredictable, any time, any where- and I learn something that is really totally true about me.
Friday, October 3, 2014
I'm at the beginning of a three day weekend!
I cannot begin to express how much I need this weekend- since school started I've been like a rubber band- boing-ing and boing-ing from here to there. I proclaimed a hiatus weekend. Meaning no plans fun or otherwise!
I need this. I know I need this. I need it most of the time because I am mostly an introvert and a homebody which means I need to be mostly at home and mostly not with anybody. BUT. Then I make coffee plans and dinner plans and volunteer for things and school has meetings and work has meetings and those are all in the same month as my husband and my youngest's birthdays and holy shit. It shows. It shows in what I'm eating and reading and doing with my time.
I do it all the time- say yes when I really mean no. Or no when I really mean yes! I wish I could cut out the part of me, whatever its' name is, that is responsible for all of my poor decision making. That part that squelches the idea that getting up early for a walk is a good idea, the part that says I can quit drinking coffee another day, the part that has me face first in my phone while the kids bounce around me wanting attention. Snip snip snip random part- be gone from me!
I am one of a huge group of people who knows what's best for me and totally ignores it! I do this all the time. I can list the things I need to make me content easily: enough sleep, exercise, connection, creativity, good food. (good food meaning not eating five chocolate chip cookies and two pieces of birthday cake in one day or another helping of the delicious polenta just because it's delicious but I'm already full) It's like when I was drinking and I knew one hundred fifty million percent that I needed to quit and then I drank anyway. It's like when I knew I had to stop having caffeine to fuel my days but I was still chugging coffee. It's making excuses around what I need so other people can be happy while I lie to myself that it's all OK. Why do I do that?
Oh, right. I'm human. :)
BUT! Here's the good part: I know it! I know that I need to take a little minute and get my self together because otherwise I will eat all the Raspberry Beret snack mix in the whole world and compensate for my exhaustion by drinking six cups of coffee a day. Here's the best part: not only do I know it I'm actually doing something about it.
Practice. It takes such practice! I am reminded time and time again that I don't really know how to do the simplest stuff- like decision making. Being sober means learning how to do all this basic stuff all over again. Knowing the right answers. Yes to one cookie. No to five of them. I feel like I'm in sober first grade. And I'm grateful to have made it through kindergarten. :)