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All Encompassing Addiction...

I know this will perhaps come as a surprise to some of you...and to others you are going to be like, “um, duh!”  But it just hit me this morning that doing something, is the same as taking something.

I have known for a long time that I tend to do everything alcoholically.  I shop alcoholically, I date alcoholically, I eat alcoholically, I drank booze alcoholically, I did drugs alcoholically, I smoked get the idea.  And I have known this forever, in fact, the only reason I never had a serious drug problem was because I knew that if I even tried one thing, that I was a goner...and to some degree, I have known this fact forever and was able to deploy it even at the height of my most dysfunctional addiction...

And I suppose I have known all along that I do things to change the way I feel as much as I took things to change the way I felt.  But I don’t know why, it is hitting me differently, and landing very differently in me today.  It is the difference between “isn’t that interesting, now let me get right back to doing what I just realized I did but do not really care or think any change should be made...”  And, “oh, my fucking God, I have been DOING things like I TOOK things and this just can’t be how I go on with my life for the rest of my days!”

Huge difference...

Yesterday here was my thought process:

I really want to move away - I am going to buy a house in Mendocino.  Fuck Ojai.

Wait, I can’t do that so I will buy another house in Ojai.

Wait, I don’t want to move, that is a lot of work, I will remodel this house and make it nicer and make some changes.

I don’t have the money to remodel right now, so I guess I will just perhaps get some new plants for outside, spruce things up a bit.  It is really shitty weather so I am going to wait for a nicer day to do that.

Maybe there is a pet I can rescue, like maybe I will get a new cat.  I mean what is one more?  Well, it is one more and you made a promise that you would not get any more pets without discussing it with someone who is currently unavailable first.

I should probably get new sheets and a new duvet cover...the one I have the dogs have ripped and it is getting super threadbare.  

I actually looked for new sheets at Target but they didn’t have any so I dodged that bullet.

And then I wanted to buy a whole host of things...make up, a new hair straightener even though I don’t ever wear my hair straight, new curtains, a rug, fuck you name it and I wanted to buy it.

In short, it was a hard day in my head.  I just went from one thing to was not a lot of fun.

I knew I was acting out yesterday but it always kind of happens in isolation from the other things...I mean, I can see what my head is doing but the events are disconnected to some degree, like I am so mired in them that I do not see that as soon as I shoot one idea down, another one pops up and becomes lodged in my present thinking and new plans.

But this morning, I saw it all.  That doing something, is the very same thing as taking something.  And I have been doing things forever.  And so it hits me kind of wonky this morning that I have 29 years of sobriety, 29 years of practicing NOT taking something, but I also now have 29 years of practicing doing a lot of other shit because I am not doing the other stuff.





Yep, as much as I would love this not to be true, it is.

This is hard. Sometimes being me is just very hard.  Like I don’t know if I can or will be able to live without addictive action.  Like even though I get a reprieve from the insanity of active alcohol and drug addiction, I am still plagued.  I am still enslaved to the idea that something outside me can and should make me feel better.  And I will tell you since I haven’t been shopping, life feels pretty flat and uninteresting.  Like when I don’t have a package on the way, like life has less meaning.

I know I am hitting a new bottom and it is welcome really.  I have known that I needed to hit this particular bottom for years.  I just wasn’t ready I guess and now that it is here, it sucks.

I am not sure I am ever going to get over thinking that a feeling is something that is meant to be changed.  I mean, I know that feelings change all the time.  And they do so of their own accord...but I believe to my core, that it is my job to help them along, so when I have one that I do not like, I can and should change it immediately.

What if nothing is wrong?  What if no emotion I am having is supposed to be changed?  What if I am sad, and I am just supposed to be sad?  What if I am upset and I am just supposed to be upset?  What if I am depressed, and I am just supposed to be depressed?  What if, whatever it is I am feeling isn’t supposed to be changed?  What if it is here to teach me something I need to know?  And for all these years, I have been taking something or doing something and denying myself the ability to see what is underneath all that pain?

What if the pain and anguish and depression is the gift?

Fuck me!

What if I just didn’t do anything but sit with whatever it is that I think?  What if I don’t do the action that feels like if I don’t do it, I will perish?  What if I just sat still with whatever came up and allowed it to just stay as long as it was supposed to?

I will tell you that while I do have an amazing degree of acceptance right now for all of this, it does feel like life is pretty meaningless.  But I can also tell you that life has always felt like a great disappointment and now I can see that when you are an addict, life is always going to feel this way.  Because life is not meant to be lived on the edges of things.  And addicts are not capable of living anywhere else.  We need the edges to feel alive and when we move away from the edge, life feels dull, drab and boring.  And I will tell you, honestly, that life has always felt like it should have been more.  I am not sure exactly of what, but I generally feel like my life should have been all the ways, all the time.

What I am learning, in new and fascinating ways, is that what goes up, must eventually come down.  And that is like some law of physics or something.  And all this time, all this life I have been privileged to have, has been in some misguided attempt to defy this law.  That I can go up and just keep going and never, ever come down.  And I can’t.

So I guess I am in the come down now.  The idea that I can just keep doing things to take me up has finally popped and now I am just here trying to grapple with life being once again less than what I thought it should be.  And that I was in charge of augmenting it with anything and everything I could pull into my orbit. And now I am somewhat free falling back into my own atmosphere.

So I am hitting bottom, again.  And it feels absolutely fucking awful.  Like life just doesn’t mean a great deal to me right now.  And while I am not overtly suicidal, I just don’t know how to live without doing something to change the way I feel.  And at any given point in my day I want to do all of the following:

Take a trip


Run away

Buy something

Eat something

Do something

Quit working

Work more



And I know, I absolutely know that none of the above are going to fix me.  They are only temporary detours that actually get me more stuck.  And I can see this now, like really, really see it.  And so I am at a loss.  I mean these are the things I have done that completely occupy my what the fuck am I supposed to do?

I really do not know.  I just know that I can’t do all of that anymore...and so for now, I will sit with it and do my best to just watch what comes up, what my mind throws at me in attempt to suck me back in again.  Yesterday was exhausting but I am happy to report that I didn’t buy a new house, go buy more clothes that I do not need, I did eat more than I should have, but I also took a long walk with the dogs so I kind of feel like there was some balance there.

It is a new day with an emerging knowledge of how much recovery I have and how much I do not...and for the life of me, I really don’t know what to do with that...except nothing, to just sit here with it and DO nothing, TAKE nothing.  Not again, still, but perhaps for the first time in a very long time...something new is emerging.

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