Sunday, 30 July 2017

Maynard from Tool knew .. It's a Herd Mentality

Just like Finding a Sober Miracle I am reblogging this wonderful post:

https://brittanybare.wordpress.com/2017/07/11/cautionary-tales/

This is an amazing post and thanks so much for sharing it :)
It is like this giant "unspoken" in many rooms - why the hell should we be ashamed by:
1. getting conned into thinking drinking is cool (and a sensible, normal stress reliever)
2.  naturally getting addicted - because it is addictive!
3.  going it alone trying to get off the stuff - looked at by others as a fuckup because, as you say, we can't drink "normally"
This has now made me super fucking furious!
More so, how many others are going to follow this amazing artist Nelsan Ellis' footsteps?  So many, ... too many.
Michelle xx

PS I can't mention being sober to my mum and dad anymore as they now think the whole thing was really just a silly mistake that I made.  Eventually I will get over it and get on with "normal" drinking again.


PPS  Some of my friends that I have told that I drank too much and have now given up, if I ever mention it again in passing like "I took drinking far and have stopped" they almost hurry me through the sentence, lots of nodding "mmm mmmm yes".  Like I am some kind of either sober advocate, or that the whole situation is yucky and they have boxed it in the embarrassing carton. Or maybe they think I am some Martyr but either way they are visibly uncomfortable.


PPPS Sometimes if I am out and get offered a drink and say I no longer drink as I found it addictive people actually look like they have stepped in dog poo :)  I walk away feeling humiliated and vow never to mention it to anyone again.

How dare people make you feel like you should be ashamed or that you don't have the ability to "drink normally" so you are a "them" and not an "us"?  They dare because of the conditioning that alcohol is a normal part of a human beings diet.  Just like vegetables.  We are sheep to the lies of alcohol propaganda.


This ignorance and total con just proves Maynard from Tool's sheep noises to the audience in one of my cd's with Sober on it (the Opiate EP?).  Was he perhaps referring to this issue.....


M xx

Sunday, 23 July 2017

Total Fucking Rubbish - The One-Sided Alcohol Stories

Anything that makes Heather Locklear look bad can't be good
I really wanted to write this because so many of the lovely bloggers out there that talk about the media and normalising, romanticising etc alcohol use.  How it is terrible, how it is annoying, how grating and frustrating hearing about "drinking will solve problems and add to your fun in life"

I didn't really get it at 3 months sober.  I secretly wondered why sober people would be annoyed by it if they were SOOO happy not to be drinking.  How could it irritate unless they secretly wanted to drink - ha! that was it they deep down love drinking and miss it so are being petty about media.

How wrong could I have been!!!  Now 260 odd days in I really get it.  Ellen D, who I love, swigging wine and tequila on her show, Facebook, TV, radio, stores ....

The impact it has on us is enormous.  The lies and deception is dangerous and makes us feel like we are isolated and a staunch group of sober weirdos.

I wrote this comment today to Lia on an earlier (1 month in) post :

https://givingupdrugsandalcohol.blogspot.co.nz/2016/12/about-how-long-does-this-last.html

"I just re-read this, I was so angry and annoyed - thought what is the point if I can't have 'fun".
Well it definitely gets so much better and in so many ways.  

It is difficult when society normalises drinking and you feel like you are out of the club.  I woke up to the radio this morning before getting the kids off to school and they were talking about their weekend.  Heaps of drinking and drinking and more drinking & how much fun they had.  That is only half of the story though, what about what likely happened: massive fight with wife/husband, slept on couch, or left at pub because had a fight with best friend.  Spent all day Sunday throwing up convincing myself it was worth it. More angry family.  Looked at my phone and realised what I have arranged for the next week which will have to be cancelled and I will look like a flake etc etc

This isn't shared.  This isn't romantic.  This isn't comedy. This isn't good radio.
One-sided alcohol stories is all over the media, facebook in the supermarket.
Total rubbish"

What if the other side was immortalised instead - it would go a bit like this:

"Had my period so felt a bit sore and gross but didn't want to miss out.  Some of me didn't want to go as I get self-conscious so drank half a bottle of old wine from the fridge because that was all that was left.  Drove to the bar, was a bit worried because hadn't eaten but it was early so should be sweet.  Got there and everyone was having drinks and felt a bit ugly so ordered shots for everyone (even though i know I am saving) and felt much better.

'Ange' was drunk and her lipstick was up the side of her mouth, had some wine on her shirt but at the end of "dinner" everyone looked really lovely - including me.  I better drink more so I can stay longer without getting bored.  Two of my friends got into a important argument about whether you should or shouldn't read a Steven King book and ending up calling each other names - everyone laughed.  Damn now i definitely need a taxi but their aren't any so will go and stay at someone's house I don't know too well.

Woke up at 7 am felt dry, guilty for not being home with the kids.  I have to find my car and get home somehow but everyone is asleep.  Called for someone to get me, embarrassed because I look horrible.  Got home and threw up, grumpy and my partner hates me because I rang drunk about not coming home then hung up on him but HEY it was SO much FUN last night!!!!"

But that would be like posting an ugly selfie, like telling the truth when someone asks how you are.  It doesn't make a good story.  So nobody publicly advertises this story, the other one is better.

I never want to do that again.  I miss out on nothing by staying in or going out and not drinking.  I gain everything.

Michelle xx

Tuesday, 18 July 2017

Well I Turned 50... and It Wasn't Like This.

All I can say is I am utterly thankful.  Thankful that I turned 50 sober, that I made up my mind back in November last year that I didn't want to turn 50 like this and I didn't.

I have been in a bit of a hole since about 26th June, I was waiting for a few days to pass and it would lift.  It didn't and I got really worried.  I caught a cold and yesterday it lifted, just like that.  The day after my birthday - it was probably just a simple cold incubating and affecting my mood.

My kids made my birthday so amazing, they were super excited (even though I was minus 1,000 not) - they made me the most beautiful presents - my daughter made a pack of cards with 26 things she loves about me, each one printed and such thoughtful real-life examples of things I do.  I am so lucky I can't believe it, even though the day felt like I had lead gumboots on, it turned out just wonderful.  One of the things she wrote at 12 was "I love how mummy gave up alcohol to make our lives and hers better"    Wow :)

My son and daughter putting her in the sink
Anyway, what do you do when you are at home school holidays and turning 50?  You google how to fix your sick chicken and they say "they love water" so...

In the sink she goes.


She loves it













Then of you google what to do next - ....
I know but she liked it
They need to be completely dried, with a blow dryer.

Happy Chicken!
So there, what to do on your birthday, give your chicken a make-over.

Michelle xxx


Saturday, 8 July 2017

Getting High

Lets face it - that's the truth, we just want to get high.

A massive fuss is made over humans taking drugs - but not alcohol.  The law states that in most countries drugs are illegal - but not alcohol.

When you take opioids you become euphoric and happy, when you smoke weed you chill out and reinvent the world, on hallucinogens you explore far corners of the mind.  On alcohol there there is a mixture of weed and opiate things going on.  but irrespective of the exact state of mind these drugs pass onto us humans, the bottom line is we do it to get high.  Call it relaxed, but it is a forced unconscious transaction between drug and human - the substance forces the human mind to artificially change.

It blows my mind how there is such a differentiation between drugs and alcohol in society that people actually believe there to be a difference.

That's marketing for you.

Tuesday, 4 July 2017

Lonely

It is very difficult to write about this one.

I have had many lessons since giving up alcohol, it is only now that I feel perhaps I understand this one.  I think it is Lesson # 5 but can't remember without looking back over my blog.

I know I started drinking because I was lonely.  It was a combination of boredom and the mundane - but the key element was loneliness.  My marriage of 15 years didn't work and we separated and then divorced.  The got back together and re-married.  That didn't work and now we have been seperated for 4 years though he won't sign the divorce papers and it doesn't really matter anyway.  I no longer feel like a failure about my marriage but I wish I made better decisions like I did with my money and my kids so my future was romantically secure.

L and I are as good a friends as can be, he is a celebrity and sweeps in and out to see the kids.  It's never overnight and just a few hours here and there - he loves them, and I just work things out around when he is available.  He calls all the time.

I have a couple of girlfriends and we walk along the beach, or take the dogs out.  My kids have some good friends and they come over.  I work with people and have two good jobs.  I spend too much money but do not struggle.  Am close with my parents who ring or I call most days.  My oldest daughter away at uni and we are very close - we speak if not each day then every other day.

Why don't I just feel lucky all of the time?  Well I guess because that isn't natural, I am learning that it is ok to feel not wonderful ALL of the time (thanks Wendy xx) but I do wish the periods of yuck didn't take this familiar pattern:

1.  start to feel a bit "not so good"
2.  after about 3 days, despair that it is going on too long
3.  start to google other people's lives and compare my life (ridiculous and then I know my spiral is starting)
4.  try to stop the downward spiral and get anxious and depressed
5.  EVERYTHING feels like shit (this is about day 10)  I feel alone. why don't I have a husband who loves me, I am 49 (50 next week in this case, next year in previous cases, next month... it doesn't matter) but the rest of my life is looking like a desolate wasteland of spinsterhood and no cuddles

I hate this cycle.  I try to occupy the first three steps by distraction, walking, mindfulness, cognitive behavioural crap.. but inevitably I sink into a state where I don't want to go to work, I don't want to walk the dog who is hanging around my ankles as I write, outside I can hear my chickens calling me to let them into their day run and the rabbit will be hungry.  The kids have gone off to school - last night I started to snap at the poor dears. God.

It is the kids and the pets which force me to keep going - but it feels like a weight is attached to my waist and everything is hard.

Finally the fleeting thoughts of drinking pop in and I think - that will solve the immediate problem.  It won't, it doesn't, it makes it so much worse.  So I am having to face this sober.

The difference between when I was drinking and now is that instead of it feeling like one big moulded disaster, I can see a definition in days, patterns and behavioural side of this.  I do know that to be a good thing, but it isn't really helping today.

Michelle xx

Saturday, 1 July 2017

The Good, The Bad and The Ugly...

I know that I get much pleasure from the small things, especially looking at the fire or feeling the texture of our wallpaper at home that I chose and put up (OK I don't walk around feeling it, just touch it if I am looking out the window or something - I can't dress this up can I? it just sounds bonkers). Buying bits of furniture and fixing them up, polishing my brass animal collection and many other mundane things.

Just as a side note and before you think someone will find me eaten by my own dogs :)  I can be practical: I built this house with my ex-husband but he left half-way through so I learned to frame, put in nogs, plaster board, put down undertile heating, put in old floor boards and so much stuff I really could have easily gone my whole life happily never doing.  I know how to use every power tool on the market and was scared of the Skill-saw (Circular Saw) for about 3 years but have been forced to add that to the list of tools I have mastered.  Angle grinders cut tiles as well as roofing iron, the router is a shit to get right, I have no table saw so learned to use a level and clamps to get a perfect straight edge.

There are still many things that need finishing, but the best thing about all of this is I can choose which area of the "house decorating" or "house building" I want to do next.  Having a couple of projects on the go at once lets me decide if I don't feel like sanding the dumb deck.  It also stops me from getting overwhelmed - lots of lists with many things on it so the smallest of stuff gets crossed off.

What I am trying to say is:  1.  all of us can do absolutely anything in life if we want, have to, need to, etc.  I get so many people say to me they could never do it - but they absolutely could.    and 2. It may make me sound slight less crazy about the next bit :)
All Alone

There are many silly things I collect (it's not junk if it looks nice) some of which are downright ugly.  I love china ducks but I am telling you I have looked for years in NZ for a set and this guy is the best I can find.  I really want three so bad!


Warning:
For everyone who has a beautiful beige, black or white
interior home with lots of glass - you will hate this :)

Plates - 

The Good
Hiding in the pantry shelf

The Bad
The Ugly
So you must be DYING to know how to hang them! right? No way am I hanging the wombat......well, maybe one day.

Paperclip + Hot Glue

The Result!
PS I put the shelves in using Mahogany decking and the cupboard is on old smashed cabinet which I sawed in half with the circular saw as the cupboard on the end was still intact - then hung it on the wall.

M xx