02 December 2018

ADDICTION: Crawling with a Crutch

Damn, damn, damn, damn.
Denial does not allow the seeing of its own insanity - what addiction is. Denial becomes you - so much so that sticking up for yourself is sticking up for addiction. Unbeknownst to you, at first, of course. For me, a sad, pathetic lament long after the ability to choose had been lost. Me, you, whatever the shell of a being is, is lost. 
Identity crisis. 
Where has the person beneath addiction gone? 
What a sad state of affairs this denial is. Is has become has-been. A shame that is also so excruciatingly real. Self seems irretrievable in this denial field and I and you and we, at some point become ghosts of ourselves, barely distinguishable by others and ourselves.
Drinking is so embedded in our culture. Happy Hours have a certain social sanction. A drink will cure what ails you and so is allowed. Big humps in the road become little bumps, we are taught, if and when a drink somehow jumps in to lighten the load.
But damn. 
That little crutch I used too much became much bigger than the load it was supposed to lighten. Alcohol, a little crutch that grew until it was all I knew and then, there I was, crawling with a crutch that no longer did as it was deemed to do and I could and would and did no longer heal. 
Crawling with a crutch. Crawling with a crutch.
Perhaps already I've said too much.
How I got to work so many times I could not count (in the thousands, at least). I had no clue. 
This is a functioning alcoholic? 
I tried to make it look like I could do it (as I over the years slowly lost my grip, lost jobs, relationships, my identity or a place to call my own). But I failed. You see, a job eventually became a punishment whose only reward was drink. A few more scotches would chase all of my sadnesses away. If not those first few, then the many more to follow, most surely would. 
"Do you want a chaser with that?" some bartender might ask when I could still afford a seat in a public bar.
"Do I want a chaser? No. No chaser. Just another scotch. Make it a double."
I was both the chaser and the chased until alcohol erased all such subtle distinctions. 
Me walking into a barroom was crawling with a crutch. 
I was filled with anxiety from the time I woke up until I brought that first drink of the day to my lips. A drink would fix my shakes in the most jury-rigged sort of way. 
My Leaning Tower was of swizzle sticks.
"So much of my perceived pleasure in drinking, smoking and doing other addictive substances was the anxiety preceding picking up and the relief of getting my fix. Give me my drug and my anxiety and stress were reduced. I called this 'pleasure.' This must be pleasure, mustn't it? Unknowingly living to satisfy my level of addiction. Is this how and why and what I lived for?...."
No scotch. No chaser. 
Recovery is the only road for me now. 
I thirst for life, not what took that thirst away. 
Drinking. Addiction. Crawling with a crutch. There is no purpose in that for me now. It achieved nothing, when truth be told, after 50,000 drinks were bought and sold. My greatest pleasure now is the absence of the crutch with which I crawled for way too long.
This new life, sane and sober, is a good fit for me. Responsible and free. Crawling with a crutch is done.
Responsible, sober and free.
This sober life is good.

"Nothing matters more than that we remain sober because when we remain sober everything matters more."
#Alcoholism #Addiction #Recovery
The passage in quotes is excerpted from ALL DRINKING ASIDE: The Destruction, Deconstruction and Reconstruction of An Alcoholic Animal: http://amzn.to/1bX6JyO
4,000+++ Recovery Tweets: http://twitter.com/JimAnders4
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