Sometimes I have really random thoughts. As I filled up the little tank for my vape stick, I wondered what I’ll do when I get old. Old, as in when popping to the shop might be a mission because I’m frail or what have you. The vape liquid I like (menthol, melon and sorbet – yum) is slightly tricky to get hold of so I order it online, but what if I can’t do that. Would it just be easier to smoke again? Would I go back to smoking when I’ve lived so long it doesn’t matter so much anymore? The thought of Marlboro Lights Menthol crossed my mind and I imagined Old Me lighting one up whilst I sit on a porch and look out at the sea. I don’t know if my imagination placed me in my husband’s native New Zealand but that was the sort of image my brain had conjured up. Quite Waihi Beach-esque. Also, I was alone. And very, very old. Anyway, there I am smoking a cigarette. And I found myself wondering, would I pour a glass of wine too? If I get to, say, approaching 90 years old, would I pour a glass of wine? Would I then feel, heck, I’ve lasted this long, let’s live a little?
Nah. See, to my mind the two are different. This is stupid, I know, because both are ridiculous filthy habits. OK, so vaping is less harmful than smoking given vapour doesn’t contain all those toxic fumes or carcinogens, but still a bad thing to do. However, I enjoy it. And the idea of having a drink seems pointless. Why, if I’m 90 years old, would I spoil my day by fogging it up, numbing and dumbing it down, and poisoning myself in the process – and especially so if I no longer have lots of life ahead of me? Nope, I’ll smoke that cigarette if vape liquid for whatever reason isn’t available, but I want to enjoy sitting on my porch all clear and present.
This reminds me of a conversation I had with Work-Hubby once. He asked me if I would drink again if I knew I only had two weeks to live. No fucking way! Imagine that! If I had just two weeks left of this amazing life, would I want to spend those last few days on earth by being in black-out one half and feeling shit the other? Hell no. If anything, I’d consider it an even more solid case to NOT drink. But I can see where he was coming from. I think if we think of staying sober as something we have to try hard to do and our devious brains still have us believing drinking would be a reward in some way, then with just days left to live we might just go “oh, fuck it”. It’s not how I see it though. For me – and this did take hold almost straight away when I got sober – it’s a case of THANK GOD I DON’T HAVE TO DRINK ANYMORE.
Sobriety isn’t something I have to fight to maintain. Being sober and in recovery is blessed relief. It’s hard to explain and I realise I will sound like a complete hypocrite now, but it’s also the hardest thing I’ve had to do. But hear me out – it’s not the not-drinking that’s hard, it’s dealing with everything with anaesthesia that’s bloody difficult sometimes. Being me and feeling everything strongly is hard work, and when old wounds still throb and bleed, it’s sometimes unbearable. But since I realised alcohol and what I thought it gave me was a big, fat lie, the idea of drinking sort of died too.
To be clear, as always – I know I always have to remain vigilant. The Beast is in its cage, but as I’ve pointed out many times before, that cage has no lock and the Beast will only stay in it as long as I keep a watchful eye. I’m an addict. My brain is still the same one I always had. I can’t afford to forget that. Ever.
How do you see it? I suppose the question can be asked in a number of different ways but in essence: if there was no consequence, would you use/drink? I mean, like a “normie”?
I wouldn’t. We’ve talked about this before, particularly around the Naltextrone discussion, but this really fascinates me.
Today I’m not going to drink.