For whom it may concern

Why do we do the things we do?

For ourselves? For vanity? For someone else? Or without thought?

Do we dress/act to keep up appearances, to keep to another’s standard?

What is that standard? What is your standard? Does it change?

Do we present ourselves to society and the world as our true selves? Do we even know who we really are? Are we merely a reflection of whom society chooses for us? If we see a photograph of ourselves who do we see? What do we observe about ourselves within the photograph? When we look into a mirror who do we see? What version of ourselves do we see or allow ourselves to see? Is it our true self? The one in the photograph, the one in the mirror, the one who lives in our bodies?

Do we change who we are depending on the audience in front of us? A wife, a daughter, a mother, a boss, an employee, a customer, a friend, a complainant, an advisor, a protector, a child?

Becoming sober let’s one choose to question with a clearer mind. The answers may not be any clearer but at least you remember the next day what you thought about the day before.

The discovery of self is a life long quest and some days feel like a leaden plod, and others a hop, skip and a pirouette. That being said I would still rather be my true self on a rotten day than an imposter with a painted on smile and crying on the inside. I would rather I cried real tears and really felt them without embarrassment or shame. Being human has a range of emotions. We have to let them in, to experience them, in order for them to pass through and out the other side. This nothingness or flatness I feel today I have embraced it reluctantly. A stiff hug for sure but hopefully it’ll be gone tomorrow.

10 months sober

For those of you wondering about my maths ability, yes, I jumped the gun earlier, and said I was 9 months sober when in actuality I was only 8 months sober. Today I am absolutely sure that I am 10 months sober.

A year ago today did I think I would be sober? Absolutely not.

A lot has changed.

Being sober seems to be the easy part. The ‘What Next?’ Step is the hardest. What I mean is facing myself and who I am is the challenge. I have spent all my life moulding myself to fit in, blend in or please that I don’t really know who I am. Don’t get me wrong I am not always entirely agreeable. I can be downright stubborn a lot of the time.

Am I being my true self or am I being an image I liked on Pinterest? Is it really me or is it an image of what I think I should be like? Today I have no idea. Today I cannot be bothered to do anything. I think I am afraid that I am nothing more than a couch potato.

My vegetable garden looks an overgrown mess. It is not tended well. Did I plant the garden because I like gardening? Do I want to grow my own vegetables? Because I saw it on YouTube and thought it looked fun, it’s on trend? Why did I bother?

Why did I start my vegetable garden?
I started it because I wanted to have more vegetables on my plate.
I want to eat healthier.
I wanted to have control over what food I ate, as in how it’s grown, spray free, etc,…
I like the idea of going outside to pick something fresh for the table.
The price of salad ingredients is ridiculous and so I wanted to grow my own for a fraction of the price. I wanted to save money.
Having a lawn doing nothing seems like a waste to me and so I wanted to create a garden that produces food for the table, an edible garden of what I like to eat.
The mulch from the hedge clippings goes into the garden and makes great soil. It all stays in the garden. Full circle.
I used the Hulgelkultur method so I could use rotten logs and branches and mulch and tidy up the place.
I measured the distance between the beds so I could easily fit a wheelbarrow between them. It was planned.

Marvellous answers to the question “Why” but do I really like gardening? Is it me? Or am I and will I always be a supermarket shopper? Today I find it hard to answer that. No doesn’t seem right. Yes doesn’t seem right either. I really don’t know. The fact that I have a broken leg and I can’t get about may have something to do with that. The garden doesn’t excite me today. Nothing does. Placing this in the too hard basket and will bring up the question to myself on another day.

Laziness and Freedom

Laziness is idleness.

Freedom is the power or right to act, speak, or think as one wants.

I choose idleness. I have the freedom to choose to be lazy. Laziness is a type of freedom. To be freely idle is a skill. To be idle without guilt, shame, regret or perfectionism is rare, is it not?

Rest is a form of idleness. Stay with me. So rest is laziness? Rest is as important as exercise. Why is there a negative stigma surrounding laziness. Why must one appear to be busy or active or expressive at all times. That is exhausting. Rest, idleness or laziness is as important as not being those things. Social media would have us think otherwise. It’s okay to rest, to be idle, to be lazy. Resting bitchy face is okay.

Meanwhile the dust and cat hairs mount on the carpet. They have banded together into piles and are visible now to the naked eye. I observe. I do not remove the dust nor the cat hairs. I remain idle.

For one to remain idle. I prefer the word idle over laziness. For one to remain idle one must either ignore the chaos surrounding oneself or do something about it. One can create habits to clear the chaos or set up systems where others deal with the chaos. The world is one system. Your country is another system. Your city, another. Your neighbourhood, another. Your home, another. Your family, another. You are another. How do you deal with your systems? Do you have freedom in all your systems? How do you navigate the chaos? How do you not let the chaos of the systems invade your freedom? How do you choose freedom in your world/systems? If you don’t have freedom within a system how do you navigate the chaos?

Take for example cat hairs? Technically they are fur strands.
Solution:
Acquire a hairless cat. Too late.
Remove the cat. They are family. No
Remove the fur? No absolutely not. I don’t even shave my armpits.
Remove the shed fur/hairs? Okay? How?
Vacuum regularly so there is no build up. Possible.
Hire someone to vacuum regularly so there is no build up. Possible.

Problems and solutions. There are as many solutions as problems, more really. We can choose to act on something or not. We can look for a solution. Whether we act on it is up to the individual. Sometimes we stumble upon a solution by chance, other times we analyse and spend countless hours mulling over the problem. Sometimes we don’t notice there is a problem. We are blind to the problem. If we are blind to the problem then how can we find a solution? We cannot. We must first acknowledge the problem before we can do something about it. Sometimes there is no solution. Or one that we can think of for now. It is beyond us for now.

Today I choose sober. Today I choose idleness. Today I choose avoidance.

Ah. That last one. Avoidance. Do I really choose avoidance? By choice? By not choosing does that automatically mean avoidance? I’m afraid so. It is my system’s way of protecting myself. Self care.

Discounted marshmallows

Sweet tooth did the supermarket run today. She bought 10 bags of Christmas marshmallows. They were NZ$1.40 down from $NZ$2.00. I knew they would be there. I had a feeling they’d be discounted. I restrained myself to limiting myself to ten bags.

Wow. The self-control she must have, you might be thinking? Hardly. As soon as I parked the car at home, I placed nine bags into the locker and shut the door. As I write this I can report that the contents of one bag is already missing. I won’t be filing a report. It’s the casualties of life.

The logic behind storing the marshmallows in the garage is laziness. Sure there is a sweet tooth that lives inside of me but she is lazy. There is no way she would bother to go down to the garage and get another bag. The marshmallows are safe where they are. For now at least.

The plan is to ration the sweet tooth to one bag a week. Realistically speaking, it means sweet tooth wolfs down one bag in one sitting but writing as one bag a week makes her sounds like she has her sweet tooth under control.

Day 32 Sober. Reading Allen Carr’s “The Easy Way for Women to Stop Drinking.” It has put the spotlight on my sweet addiction. Substitution is not the answer. Half way through and finding it very helpful.

Happy New Year! Here’s to a wonderful sober 2019!