My mom and I were talking today (2/6/19) and we were discussing the death of a soap opera actor that she really liked. It’s been suspected that it was due to alcohol and I told her that I had once been close to, if not, actually had alcohol poisoning.
“Why didn’t you tell me it was that bad?”
I didn’t really have an answer.
I had to think for a minute.
“I don’t know. I already had a lot going on. I was so messed up for a while and I didn’t want you to worry more.”
It’s called shame, y’all. It’s a big topic in recovery.
My mom hit me with that “don’t bullshit me” look that I’ve gotten about a thousand times in my life.
“No, seriously, Wrae. You can come to me with things like that.” She actually looked hurt. My mom’s not much for feelings so that must have really bothered her.
The Sunken Place
When you’re in the deep, dark place that is alcoholism, or even binge drinking, there is not space for telling many people how bad things are. This might even include your mom.
There is mainly room for drinking. The feelings you have go away, at least for a while. The alcohol clears out the pain and if you’re lucky, maybe you won’t remember the dumb things you did.
The emotions you’re trying to drown out are usually big. They feel too big to manage, and sometimes the usual coping skills just don’t work. I drank well before my life took a huge left turn, but Jake’s death destroyed me. The grief was too much to take.
There isn’t much talking. You don’t want to talk about why you drink- but telling someone about a wild night of drinking might be fun. It’s so hard to face up to the damage you are doing to yourself and potentially others. That day does come, however. My day came and went two years ago. You can read that story in Two Years of Sobriety
Since that day, I’ve finished therapy and started going to a Yoga 12 Step for Recovery class on Sundays. It’s one of the best things I do all week. I struggle with reaching out for help when I need to talk.
Writing helps a lot and I am able to get my thoughts that way, but I know talking is better sometimes. Honestly, it gets exhausting. When I get done talking about how I feel, I’m drained. I need a nap. I used to leave therapy tired as hell, especially if I had been crying.
All The Feels
I’m still a work in progress. I know I have a lot of people that I can talk to. It’s just a matter of speaking. Doing so requires lots of feelings- shame for even having this to deal with, guilt for having to unload on people who have dealt with my problems for over so many years, and just having to process whatever might be under the surface.
Can you tell this is not my favorite thing to do?
Quote courtesy of Pinterest