Day 8

I have been immersing myself within meetings and I actually like them. I even — wait for it — am enjoying women’s meetings. Who the fuck am I?

A few topics have been brought up in meetings which have made me think “Holy fuck I am right where I am supposed to be” or “Jesus Christ are they reading my fucking mind?” I so badly wish I didn’t have such a potty mouth but I am not fucking perfect.

Anyways, the three topics on the top of my mind are:

1. Service

Now I just recently saw 50 Shades of Grey and so when the topic of being of service was brought up, my mind — which is always in the gutter — immediately went to that movie and being of service in the bedroom… I’ll stop now. Anyways, once I got my mind out of the gutter (briefly) I thought about service or being of service and what that means. Now, two things 1. I am really great at delegating tasks and 2. I am really great at having people be of service to me. Basically I am not great at being of service to others. However, that’s not the point. The point they were trying to make is that in being of service or helping others to maintain and/or achieve sobriety you are inadvertently helping yourself to be your best self. Your best sober self. My fellow alcoholics it’s as simple as ask not what your country (or fellow peers) can do for you, ask what you can do for your country (or fellow peers).

2. Honesty

This one definitely struck a cord. I recently had to get brutally honest with myself. In order to be honest with others you have to first and foremost be honest with yourself. No matter how shitty humbling it is. I was finally ready to be honest with myself and that is the most important thing so far for me in sobriety because it led me to finally admit that I had problem. Something I was seemingly avoiding or denying previously.

3. Fellowship

I think what I was missing so much in my previous stint with recovery was some sense of community. I would go to meetings sure but I didn’t really befriend anyone. I didn’t become part of a sober community and I definitely feel as though I had my guard up. Now I am taking a different stance and starting to do things with other sobers. Surrounding myself not only in the rooms but in my life with people who are so much like me has made me happier. And also not alone. I started to feel so alone and to isolate myself so much and it was hard for me to get my ass off the couch but now that I have I am grateful. I’m not going to like everyone (mainly because I’m still an asshole) but at least I am trying to be a part of something rather than to attempt to do it alone.

till we meet again….

stay sober my friends.

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215 Days

I have been a little off the grid lately in the blogosphere and its large due in part to the fact that I have been extremely lazy busy. I’ll open my computer to write but the TV or wall just looks so much more appealing to stare at.

I have been kind of isolating. Isolating away from people and isolating away from my own sobriety in a sense. Not that I have taken a drink but I just have not been actively involved in any sort of sober community — blog or otherwise. I have, however, been fully involved in watching movies and binge watching Scandal, House of Cards and The Walking Dead. Clearly I always have some sort of addiction. I will not, however, seek help for my binge watching.

But anyways, I also don’t have any sober friends to talk to — other than my animals who are great listeners but really shitty at giving advice — seeing as they don’t talk and all.

While I have attended and gone to AA meetings (and actually found that I really liked them) I stopped for a couple months. I don’t really know why other than the fact that I am again extremely lazy busy.

I have found myself struggling with sobriety as of late whatever the reason may be. Was I getting depressed or down? I don’t know, maybe. Was it because I wasn’t going to meetings? I don’t know.

During a beautiful day (mind you nearly everyday is beautiful here) I found my mouth watering as we passed a beach bar thinking about what I drank last when I was there (before I blacked out after the Del Mar races of course). An ice cold Ketel Soda sounded so damn good. The fuck? There was a time in my life where I only drank Ketel/Soda (I know I’m so cool) but for years beer has been my favorite so why the fuck does a Ketel sound good? Instead of continuing to debate as to why I’m craving one over the other I decided to surround myself with other sober people.

Now, you don’t typically find sober people out at bars and I didn’t feel like asking random people walking down the street if they are sober so the only place I could think to find other sober people is AA.

However, this time around instead of just going for a good laugh, some ‘a ha’ moments and to just be surrounded by like minded individuals my intent shifted to finding a sponsor and actually getting involved with the program and the steps. Maybe this way sobriety would be easier and I could make more friends and have more of a support system. I don’t know.

I have been doing this on my own and I haven’t wanted to drink but its been difficult regardless. It’s so easy to be in my own head and isolate and get irritable or annoyed for no apparent reason. AA to me has been like group therapy. Make a long story short — I met an amazing woman who is now my sponsor (and who works in my same building and goes to the same yoga studio as me). Fate? Fucking weird.

I am still not sold on whether or not AA is for me. I now have a sponsor and am starting to go through the steps but I just don’t know. The verdict is still out. On one hand I can identify a lot with some aspects of the book and alcoholism and alcoholic nature/personality but not all. I don’t know how sold I am on it. I do agree, yes, being surrounded by other alcoholics is nice (unless they are drinking then its probably a bad idea) because you have a common desire to stop drinking. But, honestly after reading some of the book I became even more skeptical about it. It could be because I’m an asshole and like to argue everything and get so heavily involved in the semantics and literal sense of things. It could also be that I am fighting it. (For example the fact that they call it an allergy I had trouble with. But if I say I am allergic to alcohol I wake up in Mexico then I can make the point that yes I have an allergy to it.)

But, regardless of how much of an asshole I am — I can honestly say that I am going into it with an open heart and gonna go through all 12 steps. Once done, I will reassess and see if this is the path I want to take. For now, Step 1 done (I am powerless over alcohol and the affect it has on me) and 11 more to go. Go me go!

stay sober my friends.

What are your thoughts on AA? What has worked for you?

Sober Super Bowl (and also 199 days and counting).

Twas the night before Super Bowl and all through the house not a creature was stirring not even a – just kidding I have three animals and they are all fucking insane and drive me crazy and are always stirring and running around and staring at me. But anyways, (that escalated quickly and I have no idea why I started off like that) … moving on — it was my first Super Bowl without alcohol (not counting the first twelve Super Bowls I ever watched which happen to be within the first 12 years of my life). So let’s just say it was my first Super Bowl that I can remember without alcohol.

And actually Good Lord lo and behold I made it through the entire football season sans alcohol. Awful Chargers football, innumerable beer commercials, living across the street from a liquor store, Chargers football – I mean I must have some really bad karma.

Anyways I did it.

Cue the fat lady because the football season is over, I’m still sober and she can fucking sing.

But back to the Sober Super Bowl. The Super Bowl in which I was sober. My sober Super Bowl. Just saying it different ways makes me proud.

Now if you are like my girlfriend and don’t like sports (mainly anything with balls – she is a lesbian after all) I guess think of the Super Bowl as a celebration in which there are lots of friends and food and drinks… Or, if you are from a different region in which football isn’t important equate it to soccer (in terms of alcohol consumption not importance). Well needless to say it was slightly difficult for me. Throw in the fact that we went over to her friend’s house and watched the game. It was all her friends (who I adore and not just cause they might read this) and me. Now just being in that situation in which I am outnumbered friend wise (and all friends of hers who don’t necessarily really enjoy watching sports but were watching the Super Bowl mainly for the commercials) provoked a little anxiety. It wasn’t them, again I truly do adore them, it’s just that sometimes I have a hard time relaxing and alcohol has always been my relaxant in situations in which I found myself not super comfortable or in my element. And I was a little out of my comfort zone.

So I did that which comes as second nature to me – I ate until I couldn’t have one more bite without needing to be rolled down the stairs and home. One cupcake turned into two. One piece of pizza. Four chocolate chip cookies. Two ginger ale sodas. About 50 chips smothered in five layer dip. (My mouth is watering just reminiscing about the food). I need to get better about not overeating in the absence of alcohol and I keep telling myself and readers that but I still am having some self-control issues. It could be an oral fixation.

But anyways, rather be fat than a drunk so I ate too much but I didn’t drink. The end.

Side note: If I was drinking I would have been quickly sobered up by the horrific thing that was the Nationwide commercial – good marketing in the sense that everyone can’t stop talking about it — but Jesus Christ after being hit in the face with that sob story of a commercial I felt like I needed a drink more than ever. The fucking kid died? Seriously. I don’t even have kids so I can’t imagine but wait he died? Did that just happen? I am never short on words (just ask anyone who knows me) but I couldn’t muster anything other than a gasp. Now you’re going to tell me Santa isn’t real. Wait what? And the Easter Bunny? COME ON! I did not see that one coming and it was awful.

Actually now that I think about it I’m so glad I wasn’t drinking during the Super Bowl because about half of the commercials were depressing. Death, obesity, dads not seeing their kids grow up cause they’re gone all the time – dear lord I need a cupcake now more than ever.

Thank god for Katy Perry’s boobs and the dancing sharks to lighten the mood. Shit, I didn’t need to drink I felt like I dropped acid by simply watching that halftime performance.

stay sober my friends.

grandma and me

Oh! Also my beautiful grandma turned 7o and we celebrated over the weekend. 70 never looked so damn good if you ask me!

One order of Christmas — hold the whiskey and beer. (164 days).

They say the holidays are the hardest times to be sober (Please note: I don’t know who ‘they’ are but ‘they’ are god damned right). It’s fucking hard.

But…

Drum roll please…

I did it.

I survived Christmas (and Christmas Eve) sans alcohol. I mean that alone deserves a drink in itself, right?

I don’t know why ‘they’ say it is one of the hardest times but if I can theorize what makes it hard it is the plethora of Christmas parties and celebrations that typically revolve around alcohol, the stress of presents, traveling, being surrounded by family and the pressure of it all. For some the holiday’s are a cause of depression and loneliness and the thought of being around family is anxiety provoking. Fortunately I actually like both sides of my family and (maybe not fortunately) both sides have recovering alcoholics to whom I flocked to when I was in their presence.

If I am looking back on the ghosts of my Christmas’ past they have been filled with fireball, family, food, fireball (did I say that already) and (damn it I can’t find another word beginning with F) beer. Looking back I can’t remember a Christmas Eve in which I have not drank. Or a Christmas Eve for that matter. Isn’t that what the holidays are all about? Friends, family and fireball? No? Whoops. Well the holidays to me were about staying warm with some whiskey and beer, drinking into the nights with friends and family and then doing it all over again the next day.

This year instead of drinking I filled my mouth with any and every sweet I could get a hold of. I do not recommend this method but fortunately it worked for me. (Unfortunate for my girlfriend who has to hear me complain about losing my bikini model body and by bikini model body I mean not bikini model at all. Let’s just say I am feeling a little soft around the edges).

Surprisingly I had a lovely Christmas without alcohol. Wait, what did I just say? Sometimes I can’t even believe the shit that comes out of my mouth. Who am I? I don’t even know anymore.

It was relatively hard for me personally as I do still crave an iced cold beer to keep me warm on those baby-its-cold-outside-nights and to be honest to keep my anxiety to a manageable level. But I survived with no booze or freak outs. I should get a mother fucking medal of alcoholic honor.

But anyways, my eight-year-old brother still believes in Santa Claus and we think this may be the last year he believes in Santa (sorry if I just ruined Christmas for you but I feel as though if you are reading a blog about sobriety you should have figured that shit out by now but, if not, let me be the first to tell you that Santa isn’t real and neither is the Easter Bunny. Sorry).  But anyways my point in ruining your life or rather telling you about my brothers belief in Santa is that I tried to surround myself with him most of the time. To see how happy he was about this seasons greetings put me in the Christmas spirit (well his enthusiasm and all the candy, cookies and food I consumed).

I am (or ‘was’ depending on when you read this) fortunate enough to have 16 days off (all for the price of 3) and so the week leading up to Christmas I got to take some time to relax and spend with both my brother and sister doing Christmas crafts (I was more excited than they were) and watching Christmas movies in pajamas and drinking hot cocoa. I felt like Buddy the Elf I was like CHRISTMAS!! This is awesome.

Christmas Eve we had a big slumber party consisting of 10 people, 4 dogs and a cat at my cousins ranch in Jamul. It is legitimately like a compound with three stories, a pool, a tennis court, a sauna and probably a bunch of other cool shit all on over an acre of land. It was lovely. PJs, warm fire (despite it being in the 70s outside), warm house, warm beverages and great food followed by way too many cookies and sweets. Heaven.

The next morning we woke up at the reasonable hour of 5:30 AM. Hell. Luckily for my brother there were no death threats as on Christmas morning and only Christmas morning this is acceptable behavior. Also since I wasn’t nursing a hang over I was already in a better mood. Kate refused to get out of bed and may or may not have mumbled a few fucks and flipped me off all before declaring she would not get up if coffee wasn’t already started. She also told Michael that Santa could hear everything and he should go back to sleep. Despite her relentlessness in trying to go back to bed and make the kid fear that Santa wouldn’t leave him any presents if he didn’t go back to bed — we got coffee started and started opening presents. After just one sip of coffee the Grinch — I mean that beautiful woman I love — was in better spirits.

Again, the best part of the morning was watching Michael open presents and to see the excitement on his face.

Once the presents were opened we all took naps and once we awoke and (still in my Pajamas) Kate and I departed on a little road trip to the bustling and beautiful town of Yuma, Arizona to see my dad and other family. With the two fur animals in tow as well.

We ended up spending Thurs night – Sunday day there and despite an awful display of Chargers “football” I didn’t drink. (Again, it’s pretty easy since my dad is 14 years sober). I had a great time hanging out with my pops and taking the dogs to the desert, reading, shopping, eating (duh), relaxing and drinking coffee. We hiked with my step mom and pops and had a lovely time altogether. I think I only put on real clothes like once and it was only for a short time.

Next up New Years. Bring it. Who wants to be hungover on the first day of the New Year anyway? Not me!

164 days and counting…

stay sober my friends.

sibling sandwich.

sibling sandwich.

family photo. minus the cat.

family christmas photo. minus the cat. (after kate had coffee)

the dogs in the desert.

the dogs in the desert.

hikin in arizona with the family.

hikin in arizona with the family.

step mom, kate, gunner, me and pops.

step mom, kate, gunner, me and pops.