A Fear-based Response: to drink or not to drink?

I have an upcoming surgery called Chiari Decompression. It involves tapping into my skull so spinal fluid will flow and a cyst in my spine will decompress (I guess that’s the word).  The symptoms I currently experience will diminish or at least any potential progression will stop. According to the neurosurgeon, the two options to this surgery are death or have another neurosurgeon perform it.

Surgery is scheduled for May 9.

For a second though, I thought, well, if I said forget the surgery and face the rest of my life or whatever is left of it, I think I would indulge in every exotic cocktail with a devil may care attitude. Ok, a second turned to minutes, and I thought about that even more than once since the consultation with Dr. S on April 17th.

I have a pretty good attitude about it overall. By that I mean I haven’t had any anxiety attacks and I am trying to focus on what I think and staying positive. I am also focussing on how best to help the people who are going to be helping me (us), at home post-op.

As for sobriety, today is Day #229. I googled it. I really haven’t tracked it much, except a few times when I was grabbing coffee or powdered creamer in our grocery store. The coffee aisle is also the liquor aisle. How weird.

Sometimes, it’s just another day. Others, a fruity sangria sounds good. Most recently, I was looking for best cold remedies and a hot toddy came up on one website, and I thought about that as part of my arsenal.

I doubt I’ll go to a AA meeting. The few I hit in my area weren’t very newcomer friendly and that’s ok. I’m not into AA. I want to live a conscious, evolving life and self-medicating or getting that buzz kinda gets in the way. Self-medicating is a doorway, or can be, but it should not be a revolving door or both an entrance and the exit.

Just for today, right now, I am aware and I am ok.

My Body is a Miracle. Healing is a miracle. Life, IS a miracle.


GG

Desire.

Lot of different things can set off the desire to drink. Lot of possibilities and as many combinations of triggers as there are for fine cocktails.

When I noticed that I was starting to “have a little problem”, i.e  when “just one or two” wasn’t enough, I was already drinking to help ease the physical pain of the various physical problems I currently experience, and at times, endure.

The pain is tolerable today. That means I am in pain but I don’t have to take anything for it, right now at this time. But, there is a sort of pain on a soul level, or maybe mental is what I mean. I never use to drink because I was mad or sad, but right now at this very moment, I understand why some people do choose to drown out there emotional pain.

“What ifs” can be powerfully debilitating, especially as the anxiety grows to the point that fight or flight kicks in and the better choice was avoided.

If I had a ride to the store, there’s a very good chance I would buy a fifth of rum or baileys and enjoy every bit until the last drop. I don’t feel like mixing cocktails, so it would be simple: mojitos or on the rocks.

As it is, I do not have a ride to the store. There is a bottle of bourbon up in the cabinet though. But yuk, and so, no. Yep – I’m a picky drinker.

Think I’ll crawl in bed for a while.

 

Addiction(s) and Avoidance.

“As Pagans, most of us live in this world where light comes from bulbs and heat comes a stove or furnace. We understand that these changes and gains have not come without their losses. Pagans, whatever their specific practice, seek to be part of the natural rhythms. Addictions hold our awareness of these rhythms away from our consciousness. We use the addiction to stand between ourselves and the reality of change, life and death.” (The Recovery Spiral by Cynthia Jane Collins, M.Div.; Introduction, page 4-5)

Using addictions as a way to avoid thoughts, emotions, situations, memories, or whatever else we need to be aware of, seems obvious to me, now.

When I want to reach for that addiction of choice, the above quote now becomes a reminder to ask myself, “What am I trying to avoid? What do I need to be made aware of?” It might even be as simple as remembering and wanting to relive a pleasant time, like a warm summer sipping a the-recovery-spiral-a-pagan-path-to-healingcocktail in the garden. But then it is the perfect time to remember that the next day felt like shit because stopping at one or two is like stopping a moving locomotive, on a dime.

With the winter holidays upon us, memories of casual cocktails are nil because I don’t think I was ever a casual drinker, at least not without some anxiety attached to “will there be more to drink after I leave this celebration/party/gathering?”

Addictions suck because they are unmanageable. Addictions handle US. Well to that I say fuck you, addiction. I am not drinking today.

 

 

 

 

Binary Disease.

Good read and relevant 2016’s Election Day After.

“I believe in part we’ve forgotten the healing power of kindness. If there’s one thing I think we’re missing not so much among herbalists, perhaps, but with humanity in general, it’s the ability to be kind to one another, and to listen deeply. Then we might be able to move forward in a better way.” –Rosemary Gladstar

Binary Disease: Herbalist Rancor, Election Madness, Kindness Protocol

 

 

Contemplation.

Election 2016.

I was in a state of shock last night. I did not know how to react, though my first response was utter disbelief and also fear because I had seen the violence, blatant racism, and hatred, some of the rallies produced.

As I begin this new day, I have decided not to react, turning off all news media while I contemplate, rather than react. There is no call to action, other than to honor this time as an opportunity to go within and discover, perhaps, what this event means to our collective selves on our paths of spiritual growth and evolution.

I know one thing for sure:  I will be proactive in my hope for humanity, as a whole.