I had a rough week, feeling generally disconnected from friends, from family, from motivation, from life. My drinking gremlin has been asking, again, why I’m doing this. I call her Alexis. She hangs out in dive bars during the day, wears too much perfume, has shoulder pads and a voice that sounds like gravel. “Do you really want to do this forever? It wasn’t even that bad! Drinking is sexy!”
I’ve heard that relapse (Relapse!? I’m still resisting with these words.) begins way before the first drink. It can begin with lack of self-care and lead to questioning the decision. So I’m trying to dive more deeply into my “program”, but then I don’t know what my program is. I didn’t go into this planning to take it this seriously, I was just ‘taking a break’! But it’s become important to me and I want it to remain that way. I realize I need tools and a support system in order to stay focused. I do my reading and prayers and journal daily. I reach out to my sponsor. With work, school, and two teenaged daughters I find it hard to fit in more than 1-2 meetings a week. But this morning rather than just reciting my prayers, I went through them slowly and felt them. I asked for help from deep inside my heart, asked my higher power to remove my doubts and questioning. To give me signs. I said, “I really do want this, my life is better now and I’d like to keep it that way, please help me out here!”
Then I drove my daughter and her boyfriend to the aquarium for their joint birthday outing. I was going to sit in my car and read. I didn’t want to be the third wheel and I didn’t want to wander around the aquarium alone – I don’t have much practice doing things by myself. I resist leaving my house, and when I’m out, my car. I drove around a bit looking for a place to park with a view of the ocean. It was such a beautiful day I decided to get out of my car to find a place outside to read. I didn’t feel the awkwardness I usually feel when I’m alone in public. I didn’t feel alone. Something told me to just keep walking. I found a trail, and it led to a tiny little cove. I put my feet in the water and let my pants get wet. When I laid down I couldn’t see any sign of civilization; not one person walked by me or climbed on the rocks above me. It was exactly as it’s been for thousands of years. I watched 2 otters body surfing and breathed deeply. Time stood still for nearly two hours, with just the waves and my breath.
I can’t fully explain the connection between these paragraphs, except to say that where I ended up is called Lovers Point. I felt sad at first going there, without a lover. But now I see that it was appropriate, and in the end entirely untrue.