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spud (profile) wrote,
on 7-11-2014 at 12:41am
Subject: fear leads to anger, anger leads to hate, hate leads to suffering...
so, the program continues. i am currently working on step 4 - moral inventory. i wasn't really sure what i was supposed to do at first, but i went ahead and did my best with it anyway. now that i've kinda done it, i'm realizing it wasn't nearly as big as i thought. just focus on what's weighing on you the most, be honest, don't omit anything. that's the hardest part. make a list of what you're angry about. make a list of what you're afraid of (not necessarily phobias, but more day to day life stuff). sex history (i think i remembered all of their names ... maybe.) you really need a sponsor for this step. and you need to write it down. you can't do it in your head. the whole point is ultimately to get rid of it. you can't get rid of it if you're keeping it in your head.

MORE ON THE GOD THING:
sorry guys, but there's no skirting this issue. there just isn't. i like to think i'm a pretty smart guy. i grew up with church every week, and the bearded guy in the clouds, winged angels in heaven, blah, blah, blah. then i became a teenager and went, "wait a minute, what the fuck? why am i buying this wholesale, without even questioning it?" i questioned it. is god real? is god fake? have they been lying to me this whole time? what about jesus? what about buddha? this is madness, and i want no part of it. it made me feel the same way i've always felt about politics. i hate politics. two parties arguing about shit that doesn't matter while they don't seem to notice the world crashing around their ears. ignorant followers that are strongly opinionated on issues that they haven't even really investigated just parroting someone elses beliefs. and does the leader really even believe that, or are they just using it to distract the lemmings from their secret agenda, which invariably revolves around making money. after all, politicians are businessmen and women, at the end of the day. so fuck it. i'm not going to waste my time listening to their bullshit. christianity made me feel like that. "i'm gonna go to heaven because jesus died on a cross, and his father is the one god (nevermind that whole holy spirit conundrum). if you don't believe this you're wrong, and i need to make you believe it, even if i can't legitimately articulate why i believe it. them heathen muslim towelhead camel jockeys murderin' and rapin' all the time ... send 'em all straight to hell, bur bur bur, 'murica." why all the fighting? can't you idiots see that you're all talking about the same damn thing? why do we get so hung up on what to call it, and whose name is right or wrong? the important part is that we are acknowledging a common human experience that should bring us closer together, rather than farther apart. at this point, i could at least concede that there was something out there. i'd felt and seen it at work enough in my own life to admit that it was there. there were too many things that fit too perfectly together to be mere coincidence. i also cite the prevalence of at least some form of diety/religion in almost every culture around the globe throughout human history, even in geographically isolated regions, as fairly compelling evidence. but i still didn't want to enter the discussion. i didn't want to argue with someone about god, allah, the creator, the spirit of the universe, or bob the great sheep in the sky. that wasn't the point. i needed something that was real. that had an impact on and pragmatic use in my life. i think i'm finally finding that. starting to.

delirium tremens is no fun. if you've experienced it, you know. if you haven't, then take me on my word that it is not a place you want to go. i have never felt so scared and helpless in my life. and i couldn't make it stop. i was stuck in the vicious cycle; though self-imposed in a way, it seemed interminable. and even if i did get clean long enough for the shaking to stop (i caught a bug that was going around last fall and didn't come out of my room for 48 hours straight, but to go to the bathroom to puke/shit/try and drink a little water, when i could manage to walk. my roommates didn't even know i was home. i probably came closer to death than i would really care to consider.) it wouldn't be long before a drink sounded good, 'just to settle my stomach,' or whatever the justification was at the time. and once i started, i physically couldn't stop. my body demanded more. it craved that which was destroying it. so for me, this really is life or death business. a normal person may not be able to comprehend the seriousness of the problem, but i must never forget what that was like. i never want to go back to there. and if i drink anything, it won't be long before i pick up right where i left off. at first, yeah, i could probably have a beer or two at a party. and then a beer or two after work (a reward which i have earned well through my labor, right?!). but really, what's the point of just having a couple? if you're gonna drink, might as well have fun with it and get fucked up. remember, i earned this! it's not long before we're back to a half pint of vodka in the morning just to settle my nerves enough to go about my day.

it is very real. the wolf is always at the door. i live a quarter mile from a liquor store. nobody's gonna stop me, especially if i have half a mind to do it. so it's vitally important to remember why i don't want to. and the miracle of this 'god business' is that i really don't want to anymore. i don't need to. i hardly think about it any more. even at parties, i'm not really tempted to. i've proven beyond the shadow of a doubt that it ultimately doesn't make anything better. in fact, it makes life much much worse for me, and everybody around me. why wouldn't i want to take the path of improvement? of contentedness?

so, needless to say, i was at a point of desperation. i couldn't stop drinking - didn't even enjoy it anymore. i was dying. i was willing to do anything, so long as it promised to 'get me off this crazy thing.' so i start my day with a couple cocktails (this being a pint glass with 4 fingers of bottom shelf vodka, topped off with tap water), go to work for my 8am-2pm shift, the end of which is always a horrible horrible experience, pull the pint of vodka from my backpack as soon as i'm off the clock, make a 50/50 with warm water from the bathroom sink in one of the cups from the cafeteria, because it has a lid and a straw so i don't spill it all over while i'm shaking, trying to drink it. once that's drained the shaking stops. i'm waiting for the bus, it's an hour ride to the nearest AA club, which is in a different state. bought a half gallon at the store (since i was already in town, you know?), just to stock up for the weekend. by the time the bus ride was done, i was tuned up enough to walk normally again, and approaching brave enough to even speak up at the meeting and ask for help. i did. guy at the meeting volunteered to drive me home. we talked. grabbed a sando. sat on my deck and ate while my shakes came back. he takes off. i make another drink. i go for a hike with a friend through the woods, work up a good sweat. i brought a flask, just in case, but didn't need it. made gradually weaker and weaker drinks that night, until i was basically drinking water. that was march 20. march 21, i didn't consume any alcohol. i wound up giving that half gallon away to a friend. i woke up in the morning, shaking like a motherfucker, but managed to have some toast and a glass of water without spilling all over myself or the kitchen. it took about a month for the shaking to subside completely. i'm sure there's still at least some residual permanent damage to my nervous system, but i feel better than i've felt in years. and that is a miracle. a miracle that god worked in me. that's the only way i can explain it. as much as you might argue that it was just me not taking a drink, it's simply not true. left to my own devices, i get drunk. it's what i do. i'm good at it, if that's what your objective is. i know all the tricks. it was not me that did that. i just asked the universe to help me stop, and it did. and i still do that every single morning. and i thank the universe for keeping me sober at the end of every day.

i had a spiritual awakening of sorts earlier this week. i've been praying and talking about - god i guess, for lack of a better term - a lot in the past 2 months, honestly giving up all self to the whim of the universe. how may i best serve others and help do the good of the world today? grant me serenity, courage, wisdom. tell me what the fuck to do, because i don't know. help me place others before myself. i'm yours to command, since life was a shitshow when i was calling the shots, so you're in charge now. take it, i don't want it. every morning i do this.

notice, i'm not talking about jesus. i'm not reading the bible more. i'm not going to church more. but i am praying... to whatever the hell it is. i am talking with others about this thing and how they perceive it; what their experiences have been.

so, i'm driving home after work tuesday, thinking about work stuff. i'm getting all riled up about stuff that's going on there (trust me, it's frustrating as shit. all jobs have their pain in the ass parts to them, but this is like the worst horrorshow of an abortion i've every been party to as far as employment goes. it ruffles my feathers. but i'm viewing it as a sort of test - an opportunity to practice - handling these emotions, and seeking the best course of action. trying out this newfangled god thing everyone in the meetings is saying they use. i view this as pragmatism.) so, i sense the noise in my brain starting to rev up, the negative thoughts floating around in there are building up steam. suddenly i hit 'pause'. boom. stop. where's god? what's he up to right now? so - words really can't describe the actual experience, but i will do my best - i go to this room in my mind, which i have never been in, and god is there just chilling. there is no big booming voice. there is no real peace washing over me - at least, not the way i imagined it - but i am suddenly at ease. i'm all like "hey god, what's up?" and he's all like "nmh, just chilling". suddenly it was all okay. all of my anxiety over shit at work was gone. i just realized that god wasn't freaking out about this stuff, and if god really is in charge of the show, then why am i freaking out? there's nothing to worry about. it's taken care of. i need not concern myself with it. just suit up and show up. play my part, and be of optimum service. be ready when the time for my usefulness comes into play, waiting patiently.

and in that moment, there wasn't a sense of god saying "finally, you decide to check in, where the fuck have you been? your mother was worried sick!" i was just totally welcome. "please stop back anytime. it's encouraged. maybe even stick around awhile, if you'd like." i would like. i would like very much. but i'm prone to wandering, so at the moment i am going to content myself with trying to check in more often. maybe i can at least handle that. i mean, five seconds after this happened, i was all pissed at the person in front of me for driving wrong, so. you know. baby steps.

and that's the beautiful part. it's always there. it's always been there. all i have to do is reach out and touch it. i don't have to achieve some level of sanctity or whatever in order to be granted access to it. it's there all the time, should i have the presence of mind to use it. even some fucked up basket case like me is always welcome. that's so cool. i've been riding this pink cloud all week. it's awesome. i'm giddy happy and annoyingly excited about life in a way i haven't been, maybe ever. and it was not the clouds parting and a bearded man with a big booming voice and lightning bolts. it was a chill ass hippie dude in an empty room in my head, on my way to the gas station after work.
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liz

07-13-14 7:45pm

I like the way you articulate your faith. I have felt the same way about it for a long time. That history provides too much evidence across too many plains for there to not be something out there. Due to my upbringing I most easily relate to Christianity but when asked I simply call it my faith. My belief in something greater. Your analogy of the room in your head and the chilled out feeling from your deity is so spot on. Im really glad to see that youve found comfort in something higher.
As to your sobriety. Awesome job man. I cant speak to the struggle your going through but in only two blog posts youve described a level of addiction that sounds like a real bitch. Good for you. Youre a strong person and youve got this.

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tabletop

07-16-14 1:52am

hey, I don't have anything to say really but words of support and that I read this. Keep up with what works for you, and I'm glad you're in a better spot

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