Unexpected Hunger

This song – Elliot Moss, ‘Slip’ – is my new discovery and obsession of the week. I found it randomly in my Facebook newsfeed and fell for it. Hard. It’s one of those songs that has a hook that immediately makes the world stop because it unexpectedly made me feel. It spoke directly to my emptiness; pressed the button that activates the loneliness within. And you know what was weird? I enjoyed the feeling. Quiet loneliness is as familiar as my skin, and much like my skin, it sometimes filled me with bitter rage….this is what I expected to happen……..

But, now that I am evolving (well, I’m at least trying to evolve) and using my voice more than I used to, I feel strangely and peacefully nostalgic about feeling lonely (but I only sometimes feel this about my skin…work in progress, that). I don’t feel like it will tear me apart, as it once did. I’m not sitting here wondering when someone will magically appear to fill up the dark corners of my life with their light to make it (and me) better. I’m not bemoaning my present circumstances and feeling fucking sorry for myself because I don’t have what a lot of my peers have – you know, relationships, houses, kids etc. – The Whole Sha-Bang.

Sometimes I wonder if that’s what I even want anymore. I used to tell myself that I wanted the picket fence. That’s what I’m supposed to want, right? That’s what I’m supposed to design my life around, right? I mean, yes, I do want to find that sweet, that nasty, that gushy stuff with a worthy partner. I definitely do. That hasn’t changed. I just think I was looking and searching in the wrong ways. I used to want someone to know immediately how they could fix me and in the same breath I wanted them to let me fix them. I expected way too much and knew far too little before I started running around proclaiming my undying love for men who, I’m sorry to say, were deeply, utterly, unworthy of me.

God, I have spent a long, long time trying and striving to find that ‘thing’ with someone so that I can finally become the person I’m supposed to want to be. I’ve spent way too long seeking a cure for what’s wrong with me. Whatever happened to simply being myself, for me? Where did self-acceptance go? Oh right, I never learned how to do that. I was too fucked up about being adopted, losing my brother, being in abusive relationships, losing my dad….and the list continues….to truly slow down with myself and listen to my heart. I’ve never achieved that in all my years of trying, stumbling and falling. I’ve gotten so low over the last few years. God, so low.

Being low never stopped me though. I’ve gotten stuck, sure, but I’ve always found the strength to stand up, brush myself off and keep going.

And that’s what the surviving, almost thriving, Good Girl Addict in me really recognized when that song started playing….. I’m still here, despite the pain, the loneliness, the rage, the frustration, the loss, the core shattering self-hatred. Still. Here. And still hungry.

 

 

 

Urgent Frustration

Urgent Frustration. That’s the name of the game tonight. I couldn’t get my laptop turned on and logged in fast enough. My fingers are moving at a twitchy, irritating, pulsing pace. My back fucking ACHES. My shoulders feel tight as fuck. My throat is closing because of the lump of unexpressed emotion I am holding back. Frustration.

Ok, fine. If that’s the flavor of the evening; let’s explore it. Frustration traditionally means: the feeling of being upset or annoyed, especially because of inability to change or achieve something. Well, isn’t that the fucking shock of the millennium? Annie has been unable to change. Such a surprise.

I am still drinking. Yes. I am.

I am not drinking the shocking amounts I was before I started writing here. I stopped for a handful of days after I began this Blog O’Mine, while on vacation from work. During that time I was able to slow down. I focused solely on myself. I tended the fragile soil of my soul and it was excellent. Then I went back to work, my attention shifted. I started putting focus into the people I take care of 42 hours a week. And wouldn’t you know, before long my habit slowly, inevitably started to creep back onto the stage of my life. So far, it’s merely skulking in the corner – downstage left – but it’s beginning to inch its’ way forward. I think. Blech.

I feel so desperate right now. So deeply unsatisfied. I feel disappointed in myself and tired. Pull my hair out tired.

I want to write more. I want to go fucking OFF right now. But I’m not going to feed the beast of Urgent Frustration because I know this feeling is temporary. As uncomfortable….wait, Fuck that….as unbearable as it feels right now, I know it will pass.

This ability to know that I won’t feel pain or anger or discomfort on my own forever is infinitely comforting.

Whooooooo boy. Did I just have myself a moment or what?

This woman needs some sleep. That always helps to lift the veil of ‘This feels bigger than me and it will never end. EVER.’

Thanks for reading my bullshit – whoever y’all are!

 

 

Good Girl Addict vs. This Place

I just had a three hour conversation with a friend of mine who I have known since we were 3 years old. She has always been an uplifting, positive and guiding force in my life. We talk about anything and everything. We ‘go deep’ to the places not everyone can stomach or hear and we expand each others’ views on ourselves, choices and lives.

I want authenticity. I want organic evolution. I want my life to have meaning and depth above anything else. And I really think it does. For better or for worse, my life will always have meaning because of where I have been, how I have soldiered through and how fiercely I want to be better. I don’t want to stay lost in those dark woods I talked about a few weeks ago. The woods themselves don’t carry enough badness to make me want to give up, but the ‘lost’ part almost did. Feeling helpless to find my way was crippling. It was taxing. It was thoroughly draining. Somehow, I have managed to find an outlet to guide me. This Blog O’Mine.

Writing has become a necessity. Feeling my way through all of this is actually healing me. It’s making me more powerful. I feel that power in a very, very visceral way. I feel my face form a knowing and even slightly seductive smile because I am getting though this and when I’m done getting through I am going to be a force to be reckoned with. I don’t know if that sounds arrogant or narcissistic, but it feels true. It feels right. It feels like my life has been moving and bending and shifting and falling apart and fucking me up to specifically get me to this place.

This place. Kind of interesting that I phrased it like that. The opening paragraphs of my memoir mention ‘this place’ too. At the time I first wrote those words I was about 4 months into knowing my birth parents. I was floating on the pink cloud of euphoria. I was overwhelmed 24/7 and blindly hopeful for the future. A future I hoped consisted of a sustained relationship with them. Back then I was consumed with the fucking drug of learning my biological beginnings. It took me 34 years to be able to find them. I didn’t really think about what might happen when/if I did actually find them.

When it happened, when I made contact, I thought I had finally, finally reached a ‘place’ of unending joy and brilliant clarity. Then reality inevitably took control and all the hope and happiness I had started to cling to slipped through my fingers and was gone. It was just…..gone. The first few weeks and months were giddy and excited and full of smiles, laughter and hope. Meals and secrets shared and love expressed. Hugs and tears and repressed memories. All of us were reeling. All of us were swooning. Understandably so. Then. It shifted. They rekindled something between each other that I couldn’t be a part of. I said things I shouldn’t have. And they….chose each other over me and walked away from me.

‘This place’ became a wasteland. Three weeks later my mother was diagnosed with multiple myeloma – a blood and bone marrow cancer that is incurable. She is my only remaining nuclear family member. My birth parents had literally just abandoned me for the second time and now I had to face down cancer for my mother. ‘This place’ was fucking bullshit back then. Seriously.

But now. Blessedly, now…..’this place’ is………………………………………….mine.

It’s not about a man who is broken or trying to save my dead brother. It’s not about a pair of 50 something’s who never evolved past their teens because they had a lust-filled relationship in high school which resulted in a baby neither of them could care for. It also is not about trying to save my sweet, needy, special and sick mother who has never been on her own; who wants nothing but to see her daughter happy and stable with a ‘nice man to take care of her’ (those are her words, not mine).

The place I have surreptitiously arrived at is….fucking exactly where I need to be. I work really hard everyday to be content – at least partially, but more and more it’s completely – with my life and more importantly, myself. I have spent way too much time looking for something outside of myself to be the cure. I’m invested in not doing that anymore and my old friend told me today that she could hear the power of the inner strength I have been cultivating.

I fucking needed to hear that. And I’m so thankful I did. Today was a good day….I’m still drinking (for those who are wondering) but it has entirely less control over me than it used to. I’m the one who calls the shots nowadays. And that, to me, is a revelation.

 

Accountable Shma-ccountable.

I wrote the following italicized paragraphs on Friday night while I was drunk. *sigh* I didn’t have the balls to actually post the post while drunk though. I was venting my frustration at myself by typing furiously on my keyboard. I had every intention of hitting ‘Publish’ but I just….couldn’t. I felt too raw. Too exposed. But now that’s it is Monday – Labor Day, say thankya – I feel like I can handle letting this one go live.

Truth telling time….I’m drunk. In this moment of writing, I am drunk. And I feel incredibly shitty, false and low because I am drunk. Do I feel this way because I have gotten drunk while alone? Do I feel this way because I am drunk after many days of not being drunk? Do I feel this way because I think I have fallen off the wagon? Do I feel this way because there was really, utterly, definitively no real reason for me to drink enough wine to make it hard for me to type coherently? What am I compensating for? What makes it so tough for me to sit in my own company sober?

I’m searching for a catalyst and there just isn’t one to be found. I guess I’m just an addict. And I think I like the drinking and drunk feeling too much to give it up completely. Does that mean I have to give it up? DO I have to go stone cold turkey? Do I? Really?

A program made of 12 steps and a power greater than myself that has a penis attached to it says I do. I’m not saying it is wrong or completely misogynistic – even  though it kind of is – I’m just wondering why it has to be set up within a litany of extremes. Why do I have to give up my control to a power that I know nothing about? Why does this power have to be male? Why can’t I just handle this shit, as I handle the rest of my shit, my-fucking-self? Why do I need to ask for help? Why am I not enough?

I suppose that’s the core of my issues and addictions. I’ve never felt like I’ve been enough for anything – be it a man’s affection or attention, being free of the bonds of not understanding my abandonment into adoption or some other form of ‘not enough’ that I have programmed into my psyche.

That’s as far as I got because I was getting fucking angry before I crumpled to the floor to stare at the ceiling for a while. I do that sometimes. I do it drunk and I do it sober. Sometimes I just need a different perspective and lying down, flat on my back, legs and arms akimbo gives me that. It centers me a little and helps me remember to breathe. I forget to breathe a lot. I forget that I will make mistakes and I freak out when I realize I have started dancing with the Dark Side again.

And, (more truth telling time) for the record, I don’t know if I actually think that getting drunk on Friday night was a mistake. Was it? Really? Maybe it’s more a stutter step. A slight stumbling point on my road to Annie’s version of Recovery – whatever that may look like.

These past weeks I have been drinking. Not daily. Not heavily. Small amounts, usually with dinner when I get home from work and not much more than that. I don’t want to not have wine in the house. I want it to be available still. Which, as shown above is a slippery slope because I can easily get carried away. But I still need a binkie, my own version of a Recovery Security Blanket. I don’t want to be 100% booze-less.

Ugh. Do you ever just get plain old sick and fucking tired of listening to your own thoughts? That’s me right now. Maybe I’ll lie on the floor and breathe and try to convince myself not to have a glass of red with dinner tonight….I know I’ll cave. I’m making steak tips. Nothing better than deep red wine with succulent, buttery red meat. Am I right?

And if I do have wine tonight, so what? So fucking what? Is the Recovery Police going to come banging on my door and rip the wine glass from my hands and take me to Recovery Jail? I often wonder if that’s what I actually think will happen because lately, I feel guilty when I sip wine. Guilty as Fuck! I think it’s because of this blog. If I drink, no matter how much, I feel an inner obligation to report it here since my intentions in the beginning were to remain honest and accountable. I’m taking responsibility right now and the teenager who likes to let her hair down and forget hates when I make her do that. But the wise been-through-the-trenches-of-life-and-wants-to-be-free-of-this-crutch part of me needs to let this out.

So, now it’s out. And I feel better. Thanks Blog O’Mine. I love your face.

 

Happiness is Crap

As I was reflecting on the post I just wrote (pulling apart and analyzing would be more accurate) and taking a moment to downshift my brain (check my Facebook page) this link crossed my feed:

http://theoatmeal.com/comics/unhappy

Please, for the love of Pete, click on it and read this. It is silly, whimsical, wise and fucking full of truth.

I was chatting with one of my best friends the other day about life and I had a moment of clarity. It hit me that I have entered into a place of quiet acceptance and balance. I’m not super happy and exploding with rainbows and manic joy. But I’m also not drinking myself blind, angry at the world and crying myself to sleep on a daily basis either. I’m somewhere in the middle where I’m not completely satisfied or completely dissatisfied with my life. But I’m not ‘happy’. I’ve clawed my way to some middle ground. The above link makes so much sense and supports the idea I just two days ago tried to articulate to my friend.

 

Good Girl Addict vs. Being Awake

Ever since I started this blog I have felt more awake to myself. That is to say, I’ve felt capable of listening to what the voices closest to my heart and best interest have to say. I’m really not sure if I’ve ever been able to. I walked through the last 18 years of my life in a specific mindset designed to protect, shield and keep afloat my basic needs: food, sex, job, paying bills, making it to the end of another day, etc. It’s been textbook survival mode. In many, many ways I’ve been asleep all these years. I didn’t realize the full scope of this until I sat down to start this blog and publically share my ‘stuff’.

I am finding this ability to reveal myself and put it all out there is maybe not as common as I think? When I let others who don’t know me all that well read what I have to say about my life, self and experience, they are usually amazed at how ‘brave’ they think I am. Someone once said something like, ‘you don’t hide in your writing’. When I think of it that way, I’d have to agree. Writing has swiftly become the one place where I don’t filter. I don’t retreat. I stand up and face down what is haunting me. It’s a place where I can let it all hang out and you (the reader) can take it or leave it. I drop my need to people please and be a Good Girl when I’m writing here and that is liberating as Fuck.

So, I’m waking up to my life, to my true self, to who I am. I am becoming aware to how deadened and numb I have been feeling, acting (drinking daily or sleeping with random, uninterested and undeserving men) and becoming. This shift from sleep to waking has been slow, but major. My life hasn’t belonged to me in quite a while and I can feel it coming back to me in fits and starts. I want to cry and throw a tantrum when I think about how unintentionally hard I have allowed my life to become. I lost my way in the damn dark woods. My default is to be angry with my lack of motivation or be really hard on myself for not seeing the truth sooner or for wasting so much time in the dark. I should have done this or should have realized that right away. The hectoring voice of my Addictions wants to take over……but this new awareness is too potent, too acute to allow that to happen anymore.

It’s still evolving and I am very sure that it will remain that way for a long, long time. I used to think that whatever work I did would be enough to stop the ‘problem’ in its’ tracks. I was completely sure that whatever effort I put in to getting through a traumatic life event would make pain down the road non-existent. Haaaa! What a joke. I never once put energy or thought toward the fact that I will always be learning. I will always be changing and growing. It will never stop and that’s a good thing. A state of perpetual education is something that people who live full, meaningful, delicious lives cultivate.

Now, that. That. Is something I want — A life brimming with depth and creativity and joy. A life where I see the light and fun as much as I can. A life where I check out the dark corners from time to time because I still believe that all emotion is valid and cries out for acknowledgment. But I don’t want feel the need to sit in the sadness and hurt. And honestly, I feel that need less and less. It almost doesn’t make sense to do that now. It seems silly to waste my energy on thoughts and feelings that do nothing other than hurt my already tired heart. What the fuck was I thinking all the long and lonely days I sat in my pain? Good Lord.

I’m starting to be able to recognize almost immediately when I slip back into an old thought pattern of habitual self-pity. Instead of bowing to it and succumbing like a glutton for punishment, I take a deep breath, square my shoulders and tell myself that I’m worthy of letting that shit go. I tell myself that I don’t have to torture myself. I tell myself that I deserve to be free of the beliefs and emotions that don’t serve me. And holy shit, that is actually working! I actually believe the strong, positive and loving voice that has been speaking from my heart more and more. I fucking believe her. Who would have thunk, huh?

I feel the need to reiterate: this is a process. I know this is an evolution of my self. I know I will slip back into the dark woods from time to time. I know it will happen because nothing is guaranteed in this life, not even my new sense of well-being. I know that old habits die hard. Really hard. And that’s totally ok. I can go with the pain or grief or anger or frustration or boredom or whatever I feel that threatens to deliver me back to my cave of addiction and pain. I can go with it, I can bend with it for a minute or two and then I can walk away. That’s at the core of the transition I’m going through – I can walk away. Remembering that I do not completely lack some form of control is key.

I can walk away from the pain whenever I want to. It doesn’t own me. It doesn’t control me. It doesn’t define me. I am my own imperfect person. I am the one who decides what I want my life to consist of. I am the one who lives fully, deeply and deliciously. I deserve it.