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Beyond the Boredom and Shame
So Effing Boring…
2526.260 That’s how many days I’ve been sober. What will stay with me are the memories of the shame and boredom of early recovery.
It’s a long time, but not long enough, because it is my aim never to take a drink again. I really never should say never, but with some of the shit that’s gone down in my life since that day in October 2013 when I took my last drink, and I have no idea of how long I’m going to live, I reckon that my chances of success are better than fair and a damn sight better than middling.
And if I can do it, I reckon anyone who has a mind to can.
My thoughts about alcohol have changed a good deal over the years. My thoughts on how to tackle addiction have changed over the years, but what will stay with me until they put my ashes in a pod with a seedling, is the shame and the boredom.
I’ll start with the B word: boredom
Once I detoxed and got marginally happy, I had to face the prospect of socialising again. I’d made my life quite comfy, work, HSM, Netflix and crochet, but I knew that at some point I’d have to face the world.
The problem was, that although I was busy, I was bored, bored. It took me a few years to figure out that the excruciating boredom was a symptom of drama having left my building
To my surprise that isn’t the way it all went down.
The more sober I got, the more zen I got. The more zen I got, the more I appreciated the very simple things in life. I was amazed how thrilling washing up and general cleaning had become. This uncharacteristic behaviour led me to think that I was losing my marbles. The truth was that I had found my marbles.
Eventually, I decided that I couldn’t hide in ‘Recovery Cottage’ forever; that I would have to resurrect my social life. This bothered me as I had a bit of a reputation as a hard-drinking, fag-smoking party girl. How would I maintain my reputation sipping lemonade and lime and fake margaritas whilst puffing on a vape?
It took me six months to work up the courage. I was scared to death that one sniff of prosecco and I’d be a goner, but my greatest fear didn’t happen. In fact the opposite was the case. I had a ball, I was present, I listened, I spoke instead of slurred, I burnt up the dance floor without spilling a single drop of my mug of tea. I discovered to my amazement that drunks are boring: seriously, bloody BORING.
Social life restored as I found that I was missing out on nothing, I had to face and conquer as addict’s second bete noir: shame
Shame is a tricky little bugger, shame is hard and it takes a lot of getting over. Shame is deeply ingrained deep in the soul and stems from further back than we would like to think.
Shame makes you feel like a fraud. Shame makes you feel unworthy, shame is the dark fetid pool at the bottom of your low self esteem. To live well, shame has to be faced, cast off and consigned to the hell from which it came. Shame is a bastard, shame is a bitch. Shame is what ties you to your past and bars you from your present.
So, quite simply it’s not just about the boredom, the hardest part of becoming sober and staying sober, is kicking shame out of your life and burying it in the deepest pit that you can dig.
Once you’ve done that, you can live your best life.
And for sure you can fuck up sober. For sure people will try to bring their drama to you, but with a life on the other side of the twin peaks of boredom and shame you can simply say:
Thank you so much for your kind invitation to join in your fun and games, but respectfully, I decline.
For those of you who are new to the sober path: courage, believe in yourself and not the bullshit in your head.
To those of you who’ve been travelling for some time……………………… fill in the blanks yourself, you know what means the most to you and why you’re where you are now.
Love and many blessings
Mrs P, author of The Fuckit Bucket and other great articles starts her 8th alcohol-free year in October.
More from our Boozemusings Blog :
Will the fun be over if you stop drinking alcohol?
Ditching the Shame When You Go Sober
From Sober Curious to Sober Courageous
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