The lone sheep and the heavenly blue

22:59 This morning I did a bunch of stuff that felt important at the time but turned out to be more likely meaningless verging on ridiculous. Then I got my act together, made lunch for the fam — salad plus leftovers from the curry Monsieur had made last night, plus the remainder of the red-current pie I’d made yesterday with fresh berries. (Yes, I am feeling pie-ous.)

Then I painted the main wall of the kitchen, while Monsieur poured more concrete. The man’s in love with concrete… he’s also a workhorse. I admire that about him. I used to be as well. Or maybe I still am but in different ways. But today, I was more like him. Which felt productive.

For Sunday family movie night we watched Back To The Future part 2. Last week had been part 1. I noticed two things: 1) that Biff was basically a precursor to the current US president (complete with blond comb-over) and 2) ALL THE BAD GUYS DRANK. This is a good family movie in my books.

The kitchen wall is a pale heaven blue and I can’t stop admiring it. I’ve been wanting to do this for ages but I’ve been too indecisive and hopeless (“what’s the point?”) and lacking energy. So I believe my having done it today is an indication that well-being may be on the upswing. It helped to announce to anyone who happened to be “listening” that I would do this, TODAY, in the comments of “Sam I Am”‘s blog. Thanks Sam. Sam has been busy flying high and seeking peace. I feel amazed by Sam.

I must admit that unlike Sam, I have few instances where people are enticing me to drink. I also do know from experience that if you say no often enough and decisively enough, the requests will stop. Which is both a blessing and a curse at first… due to the feeling of intense aloneness. But as Sam herself said, “This Too Shall Pass.” Heaven wasn’t built in a day and all that.

I don’t work outside the home (except at a volunteer place once in a while), and I have avoided social events that might be booze focused till very recently.

Besides the early subtle pressure from my husband, which I’ve blogged about here several times, and which has now all but disappeared, lunch with fellow-crazy-lady has been the main exception.

During said lunch, in spite of my ordering alcohol-free beer (miracle that they had it on the menu! very unusual) crazy lady said “we must have a wine night.” She seemed so surprised when I said I didn’t plan on drinking any wine. I thought she knew all that.

Still, I can understand her not “getting” it because I’m careful this time around not to make sweeping statements about my intentions. I don’t want to push my own self-sabotage buttons. So what *did* I say? I wish I’d journaled about it right afterwards… but basically I think I just said wine had been once again causing me too much anxiety (which was true) and I just prefer not to drink it anymore. That I felt much happier in general without it. (Also true. Though I had to secretly admit that in that particular *moment,* I did *not* feel happier without it… the lunch out with my favourite “party” friend was just not the same without wine.)

I remember Dwight saying, in a comment on one of my posts, something to the effect that things begin to look different with continuous sobriety. Not all of those things look as pleasant as they once did. And that that’s not always a bad thing. It’s hard to come to terms with some of them, but this is actually progress, no matter how much it feels like descent (because it causes suffering).

I love the four noble truths, in Buddhism:

  1. there is suffering
  2. there is a course of action that leads to suffering
  3. there is cessation of suffering (happiness)
  4. there is a course of action (a path) that leads to the cessation of suffering (happiness)

I first began to absorb them last year when I read a book by Thich Nhat Hanh called “No Mud, No Lotus.” I had also just seen the amazing glowing beings that are lotuses, at the monastery in the Dordogne. They do in fact grow straight out of mud and swamp water. Possibly the most beautiful flowers I have ever laid eyes on…

***

Last night was really hard for me, hearing my neighbours’ party, to which I had once again not been invited; I felt very alone. And I was very much noticing myself following the old thought train that “hedonism is more fun.” But I was remembering all the “good times” only. Funny, it’s so easy to remember the “good things” about drinking and completely forget the suffering it caused.

I stopped for a reason, or rather multiple reasons. I stopped *multiple times over* for multiple reasons. Each time, it was because my life had literally become unmanageable, even if no one could see that; even if only because of my state of mind.

I don’t want to lose my footing now.

I’m standing on that mountainside, like one lone sheep in the wind, and letting the feelings wash through me.

***

I want to express gratitude for my husband today. I vented about last night and the sheep and the party I could hear going on without me and he framed it perfectly, though at the time it annoyed me: “You mean you don’t like it because it feels like high school all over again.” (He’s not much a fan of social stuff. It’s no skin at all off his back, if we’re not invited to those parties.)

I was annoyed because I wanted a little coddling and commiseration, but that’s not really his strength. On the plus side he’d really nailed it. My life right now, with my friend in town and a very similar repeat of the events of last year taking place, it does feel like high school or Real Housewives or any other situation in which those who *do* play honestly, fairly and reasonably *don’t* get rewarded. That’s really how it feels in that moment of suffering.

But it’s not true. We who play fair, and as best as we know how, certainly will be rewarded in the end, in the matters that count at least. It just requires vision and faith to know this.

 

***

23:57 so tired. wish we could get the kids to bed earlier. it’s a struggle every night. but grateful they are sleeping now.

pexels-photo-sheep-by-Lukas-Hartmann-Pexelsp-1557650-sobrietytree.com

sobrietytree.home.blog/sobrietytree.com – Day/night 102

Photo by Lukas Hartmann on Pexels.com

 

 

 

 

 

15 thoughts on “The lone sheep and the heavenly blue

  1. I remember reading a book when I was trying to get sober one of my times, where the woman said, it’s not better, it’s different.
    I didn’t like hearing that at the time.
    Now, my life is much better without drinking, arguments, drunk driving, etc.
    It is also different.
    There is a loss, and I had to learn how to incorporate that loss into my life.
    I’m like you in regards to parties, and my hubs is like yours!
    Like other losses in my life, it might never go away, but I have learned to see it in as a change, and move on!
    xo
    Wendy

    Liked by 2 people

    1. It’s definitely different, and not all better… but what is better for me is the lack of confusion over whether some of my anxiety (mostly post-social) is caused by wine or not. And the removal of that question makes it easier to go deeper into resolving root issues… I loved hearing your insights, Wendy. Funny about the hubsters… in some ways it makes for a better pairing, I believe; in others not. But I married him because he is the way he is… a bit more introversion is a nice balance. xoxo stl

      Liked by 2 people

  2. I was invited to a family/friend large get together this past weekend. I caved and drank. I did not drink very much however I felt just yuck the entire next day. I was not productive, no spunk and like you I love being productive. So, now I am back to square 1. Ugh. Frustrated with myself however I am excited to be getting on with racking the days up again! Your strength is admirable!! 😊

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Jackie this comment is such a gift to me, thank you. It’s been a bit of a mind-struggle these past couple of days, and your honest sharing of the “day after” (especially/even after only moderate drinking) helps me more than I can say… it’s crazy to me how easy it is to forget, no matter how many times I experienced it (and even journalled/wrote about it!!!). Again, thank you so much. 🙏❤️

      Liked by 2 people

      1. I have to agree with sobrietytree, Jackie. You’re honesty is amazing. And you know what, you have one more day than someone else and are spreading hope that they too can work thru this!! 💖💖💖

        Liked by 1 person

        1. thanks so much for taking the time to write your comment to me! It was hard to write that I didn’t stay strong but tomorrow is day 3 and I felt so good today I even went for a run after work. I like this! Thank you again!❤️

          Liked by 2 people

          1. Heck yes!! Before I was able to put these few days together, I had was a chronic relapser for a year then finally whatever push I needed came to me. Idk how or why, but it did and every day hasn’t been easy. So far in sobriety I’ve been fired, broken up with a moved twice, but somehow things keep working out the way they should. Don’t give up hope. And just think, even tho you fell off the wagon this last time, you still were able to be sober for a bit, so you know you can. You just have to find your “why”. That’s what I call it anyway. “Why do I want to be sober today?”
            🥰🥰🥰

            Liked by 2 people

            1. I love this Monica… as you illustrate, persistence is key, as is purpose… though so f*%$-ing hard to remember at times!!! Ergo hope and faith… Thanks for being here, much appreciated. 🤩💖😘🙏

              Liked by 2 people

          2. You are absolutely wonderful, Jackie, and I’m sorry I was not more empathic… I’ve been mentally askew, super happy Monica is here to pick up the slack. 💖💕You are definitely spreading hope, and it takes so much bravery and love to comment as you do, thanks again for each and every time. You’ve been a huge support to me. Can’t say it enough.

            Like

            1. Oh no problem at all! When I read your blog about the party I could so relate and I had to share! Like you mentioned it is so easy to forget that day after! I thought it was meant to be that I read your post and had just had been in a similar situation but didn’t stay strong. That blog was the perfect blog for me to read, right when I did and I’m so happy I could help you too! 😃❤

              Liked by 1 person

  3. “We who play fair, and as best as we know how, certainly will be rewarded in the end, in the matters that count at least. It just requires vision and faith to know this.”
    So very perfectly worded! 🥰🥰🥰 I love that you ended this on such an amazing high note! The best is yet to come! 💖💖💖

    Liked by 1 person

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