A thing happens when you tell people you are sober. Well meaning people will tell you things that will make you furious. As if you asked. As if it was an invitation to talk about their alcoholic insecurities. They will tell you they have “cut back” on their drinking. Here’s what: I do not give a fuck. It literally means nothing to me. Cutting back is not anywhere near quitting entirely and I will tell you why I know – because I, too, have “cut back” in the past until I didn’t. Couldn’t. Honestly I don’t even know why I couldn’t moderate (and pro tip: neither do you so please just don’t). But I will tell you this: I have no escape door do you understand what that feels like? Nah. You want out you can slip right on out. I don’t care. I don’t even know if you are telling me the truth. I suspect not. Maybe you think it’s true but it won’t be for long. Moderation is not sobriety and it’s always headed in the opposite direction no matter what you tell yourself. Sorry not sorry. Fuck all the way off. I have a massive head cold this morning so I’m probably being an asshole and I get that actually. Perhaps tomorrow I will wake up with what I am told in sober circles is a ‘vulnerability hangover’ which right at this moment sounds truly silly and idiotic. I am trying not to be a dick which is only making me more so. Thanks for stopping by I have nothing to offer you except this rant which in the past I would never have allowed myself to feel at all let alone write out in public. I’m done. I’m spent. I am rage-filled and exhausted. Everything is about me right now and I literally do not give a fuck. I am saying all of this because when I “look back” as so many have told me I will, I want to remember also that this is the hardest most excruciatingly difficult thing I have ever done in my entire life. I hate that I feel this way. Every fiber of my being is livid that I could feel this mean, this dismissive, this ugly. And no one gets it. No one. Polite and mild and fawning go out the proverbial window sometimes and honestly it feels more real than anyone including me may like to admit. It is not all epiphanies and pink clouds, folks. It’s not romantic. It’s not pretty. It isn’t nice or cute or ‘good for you!’ It is an absolute shit show. Feeling everything, please remember, means every single goddamn thing. Here is another thing. I don’t write so anyone can save or comfort or fix or explain to me. I’m an alcoholic not an imbecile. When you get sober you get clear – you don’t become angelicly, divinely immune to your own humanity. You become gruesomely aware. Hideous. Angry. Selfish. You come face to face with the nasty shit you need to “work on.” And people will not like it because they either want you to join in on getting stupid drunk or to smile and offer to drive them home. We don’t like real people. As much as we say we do. As much as ‘authenticity’ is a lovely thing we pretend to applaud. It’s all bullshit. You want to be the main character? The center of your own attention? Be my guest. Quit drinking. See what you are actually like when you can’t leave. When you have to stay inside yourself when everything inside wants out.
Author’s note: After writing this post I will breathe very deeply, drink a very large glass of water, and go to the beach to stare at the ocean with my husband, who by the grace of something holy which is beyond my understanding, continues to love me through all this fuckery. And he is one of the annoying people who ‘moderates.’ I love him anyway. Sometimes people are so complicated you simply cannot make sense of them. Still, we continue to exist all around one another. I share this rant because I respect myself enough now to be real even in the unpolished, unedited state I’m in. If this is not your jam that is not my problem.