Floundering Inc

Which way is up?
Why are my eyes leaking?
This sigh!

I cannot smile for myself. How can I smile for anyone else?

Doing nothing can be the best way to sit out a funk. Or in this case a sit in. I hope it doesn’t last long. I cannot see an out. I know in my logical part of my brain that it won’t last forever. I know that. But. The loudest part of me cannot see that. It cannot fathom that. It despairs. It doesn’t see why I should bother trying. Why bother? What’s the point? Lie down. Give up. Stay down. You’re not worth it. You’re down right ugly. To the core.

I just want to hug myself and grip tightly and stay like that until the tears stop rolling own my cheek. Saying nothing. There are no words that comfort me. I just need to feel constricted and warm, cocooned. I don’t need unnecessary sounds of ‘there, there’ that’s just condescending. Shut up already.

Scratch that. I want to hug, not be hugged. I want to feel comfort, not be comforted. On my terms.

I cannot see myself clearly. I cannot see myself honestly. I am lying to myself. I am hard on myself. I am downright cruel. I would not treat an enemy as I do myself.

Fear grips me too. Fear to move forward. Fear of success. Fear of failure. Fear of being laughed at, ridiculed. Fear of being vulnerable. Fear of being me. Fear to try. Fear. Simple. Fear.

I can’t deal with fear today. That’s too hard.

What’s the worst that could happen?

It will never be as bad as you imagine and it won’t be as good as you imagine. It’s usually somewhere in between.

I can talk myself out of trying. Easily.

Being sober. I am clinging to that. It is my life raft. I don’t have a desire to drink.

I drank to give myself moments of peace from the negative voices in my head. I drank to take a holiday from myself. It was my way of coping with being me.

I am living with fear. This fear I want to shake off. It is crusted and mouldy, there are layers upon layers of fear. Peeling layers replaced with glossy new ones. It is suffocating me.

Trying to open a window for my soul to breathe. But the window frame is painted shut. There are nails that need to be pried out. There are cobwebs. It is filthy.

I want to have a long soak in a bathtub. I cannot do that at the moment. I have a cast on my lower leg. A bath is out of the question. God I miss having a bath.

I have plugged the leaks of my eyes. In its place a headache has surfaced. Rest.

Rest.

I am so sick of resting. The simple act of taking a walk. I would love to do that. I am going stir-crazy from a month of rest. Damn this broken foot. That is the truth of it. This will pass.

Avoidance

Drinking was an avoidance. An avoidance of what exactly? Life? Facing myself? Facing today? The present?

I have been supremely adept at avoidance. Pushing something away. Not facing something actually is far more exhausting and requires more energy than facing it. The avoidance thingy is draining and I am tired. Enough is enough is enough.

Excuses:
I’ll get round to it.
I’ll do it tomorrow.
All right.
I can’t think about it now.
I’m too tired.
It’s too late.
It’s too much.
Not now. Later.

Habits are easy. Once an excuse is spoken or thought it becomes easier the second, third and fourth time. It rolls off the tongue, it glides through. It appears easier not to. On approach it is waved away. Like a small child interrupting adults talking. Soon it knows it’s not welcome. It lingers but behind closed doors. Lurking. There but not really truly present. More of an essence. A residue.

In limbo now. I am no longer drinking. I have no desire to go back to drinking again. A small white lie. I had a thought yesterday. Of what if? The thought was there. How big or small it was is irrelevant. It was there. And now it is no longer there.

I am aware of this avoidance that I have veiled over myself. The cape is see-through. It has slipped down to my shoulders. It pins me still.

Drinking is behind me. The present is in front of me, it is around me, it is here, but I still feel frozen with fear. Fear of what exactly? I have no idea. The fear of stupidity? Of failure? Of success? Of boredom? Of nothingness? Of repetition? Of feeling? Of letting go? Of control? Lack of control? The unknown?

Ah.

Control. A fear of a lack of control? Is that it?

Does that boil down to ego?

I have no ambition. Never had. I used to think that was a minus. Now I see it as a plus. I had no self confidence. No self esteem. Now I have some. I used to feel guilt, paranoia and perfection. I have managed to shake them off. Anxiety lets itself in still. It comes hand in hand with depression sometimes. They are a pair who have a key. I asked for it back but it fell on deaf ears. I changed to locks. But we are in a heatwave and I need to let in fresh air. Sometimes they creep in an open window. Tonight they are bothering someone else. I am alone with my fear.

The present is now. I am here. I am showing up. I am present. Now what?

Day 51

Being sober is the easy part. The decision to become sober was difficult. Finding what to do next and how to do it is the struggle. More the “how” really.

I am sober but the habits that surrounded the alcohol are still with me. Tidying and cleaning, basically housework in general is not something I excel at. Our home looks lived in. It is not a show home. It has books and comfortable couches and day beds. It has things scattered on the floor. It is not ready for visitors or guests. That’s okay for now.

I used to strive for perfection. Then I realised that it was ridiculous. I still try but not to the extent I used to do. I overdo things and need a gentle nudge to stop trying to do everything at once. I am finding more peace with dropping perfection, guilt, paranoia and regret. These things I dropped before becoming sober. Anxiety is still with me but in a much weaker form. Depression is with me too but I recognise it, accept it and have learnt to live with it better. Fear is still with me. Fear is holding me back. I know this. I recognise this. I aim to challenge myself and make the fear smaller or contained. First though comes care. I need better care before I can face fear.

The past two years I chose to face things. Facing something is scary. It is easier to postpone, to look elsewhere. It is difficult to face something but once faced it removes a brick in the wall that surrounds yourself. It allows you to find lightness, makes it easier to breathe.

Facing something allows you to move on.

Insomnia is taking a hint and edging towards her packed bags at the door. I am managing to get to sleep by about 2am. Huge improvements for me. I took a bath with Epsom salts, 2 cups worth and soaked while reading a book with tea and a nice candle. It was relaxing. I had forgotten the magnesium in Epsom salts. Magnesium sulphate, of course. One source of increasing my magnesium.

Accidentally kicked my Epsom salts glass jar in the bathroom a few weeks ago. Sober. Glass and salt everywhere. Yikes. That stopped my habit dead. I want a replacement jar for it but something unbreakable. Zip lock bag will have to suffice for now. The jar was in the corner out of the way I thought but my foot found it regardless. Clumsiness is still with me.

I made it to the gym once this week. I did mini habits twice. I am eating better. I am enjoying homemade toasted muesli and adding more fruit and vegetables to my life. My weight is going down. The scales are showing me numbers that I haven’t seen in months. A healthier me is beginning to show.

Reading is my rock. Non fiction, fiction, doesn’t really matter. My list of books to read is getting longer and my tangents are dividing as I explore further. Learning and leisure is for everyone.

Progress made. Half way through this week I got lost but I found my way back again. Onwards.