Eat, Pray, Love… ..and Work?

I remembered this morning, and dutifully knelt by the bed and prayed for a sober day, and last night I remembered to do the same to say thanks for the one I had. As before, despite feeling a little silly, I’m taking this very seriously and put all my emotions into really believing in, or at least trusting, the Higher Power I was praying to. Perhaps one day it’ll just click and I’ll know what my Higher Power is given I’m not sure it’s “God” or any of the Amen stuff.

I want to talk about the day job…. When you spend the majority of days hungover, even the simplest tasks can seem insurmountable. This would be hard to explain to a non-drunk. Hangovers that are almost at a chronic level, where your body and mind are so ravaged by alcohol that even making a phone call is complicated. Coherent thoughts require enormous effort, like two threads floating around in water, you need the ends to meet but the connection doesn’t happen in the waves so the two are incomplete trains of thought and you will always remain a little lost so long as the two don’t connect. Hm, not sure that made any sense whatsoever. But perhaps that’s the best illustration of all.

My job is not complicated and even with a severe hangover (not that I seem to ever have non-severe hangovers – certainly not over the past decade anyway) there’s nothing that challenges or stretches me. It just takes a lot longer and keeps me busy due to my mushy alkie-brain trying to connect the dots. Actually! Did you know there’s such a thing as “wet brain”? It’s booze related. And it makes perfect sense. Not that I need any scientific evidence to have me realise my lack of brain power was down to drinking, I didn’t need anyone to tell me that but thought the “wet brain” thing was quite interesting as well as scary. More on it here: HAMS: What is wet brain?

So anyway, I thought now that I’m sober I’d perk up and do a really great job. Not so much. Turns out I’m now completely bored. When I’ve done in a couple of hours what hungover me would have needed two days for, there’s more stuff to do of course, but none of it is difficult and I swear the most complicated thing I’ve done in the past couple of weeks is trying to work out what was said on the tape I happened to be transcribing.

It was only ever meant to be a back-up and an income stream whilst I pursued my creative passions, so it’s not as if I got it because I thought it’d push me in any way. Of course it turned out it was the perfect job for an alcoholic, so time I could have spent writing or on other creative pursuits I spent drinking. It was never the intention, but then for this alcoholic it never IS the intention. Just like it’s never my intention to have more than a couple of drinks. When you’re an alcoholic intention means shit. It’s a choice that isn’t yours, yet we all seem to think despite never succeeding that THIS time it’ll work out that way.

But I digress. Back to the job.

The eternal optimist in me does see all the good things about this gig: I work for wonderful people, it’s at the right end of town meaning I can either drive for 15 minutes to get there or take a lovely walk along the river THE WHOLE WAY (come on – how many people can boast such an amazing commute?!), I never have to dread going in because it’s lovely to be there and it brings in enough cash to wear the jeans I want and stock up on silver, gold and stones to turn into jewellery. And most of all the time to write. So why complain? I’m trying not to, but it’s just not for me. I do have a little stash of ready-to-wear metal and glitter, so now’s the time to get going. That’s my medium term plan. Create a side stream and when that approaches my current salary that’s when I pack this in and pursue the things that fulfil me and those things ONLY. That’s something sobriety has already brought my way, only two weeks in: my drive, passion and motivation to grab life with both hands and go for it. Isn’t that amazing? For me it really is, because the drinking has meant I’ve had the get-up-and-go of a slug on morphine for all these years, and now I’m finally starting to be… …….me!

Just the feeling itself, this joy and excitement bubbling in me that feels like something is about to explode (in a GOOD way!), is nothing short of mind blowing. You know, I sat there in the first few meetings and listened to people say how all these amazing things had come their way with sobriety – it’s true! It’s just like that! Nothing can stop me now, there’s nothing holding me back! Already the universe is delivering.

As long as I don’t pick up a drink, this is the life I will now have and it’s so full of possibilities. That’s why today, I will not have a drink.

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