Thoughts of You, Thoughts so True:
The song, “I Remember” by artist Whitley on the album, The Submarine, is a beautifully written song. I had chills for a solid two minutes and forty seven seconds while I was listening. It got me thinking about Katie again—thoughts that not even Cherry’s bizarre antics can push to the side. Why, after almost a full year, can’t I stop thinking about her? Why is it that every attempt to fill the void created after Katie left has proven to be completely aimless? No one compares –no matter how beautiful, smart, ambitious, etc. It’s just that simple…no one compares. To me, she was the most beautiful, the smartest and, like stated before, simply made sense to a complex man like myself. At times, when I think of her, I still feel a bit sad—it’s like a 300/lb person standing on my chest—it becomes difficult to breathe.
I get frustrated by how much I miss Katie—but have to also appreciate the clarity that ensued after her departure. I wish I could share it with her—but I can’t. And, that which we can’t control shouldn’t dominate our thought process. Each person we meet in life, not just any type of person, but the ones that we remember—each of them have an impact…some more so than others. I feel that, if a god does exist, he/she placed Katie in my path, and I hers—she saved my life. I just hope that in some way—I had an equally important impact on her life. I’m pretty sure, deep down, I wasn’t the one who had an impact on her—but I know Lila did. It would be self centered to think that I made some sort of positive impact on Katie’s life—if anything, I taught her what to avoid in a man, how to recognize the red flags of emotional instability and to not fall victim to an insecure man. In life, it’s just as important to figure out, through trials, what it is that you don’t want and need—it makes you hold on tighter, and appreciate more what it is you do want and need.
Almost a Year:
Anyways, as I sit at my work station eating green grapes, listening to music and writing a blog entry—I feel overwhelmingly appreciative that my daughter is healthy, I am in decent shape, employed and sober. I am currently getting paid as I write my thoughts—so does that technically make me a writer? Absolutely! I’m getting paid and writing simultaneously.
I am just a bit over a month away from one year sober. Three hundred and sixty five days without one drop of alcohol coursing through my mind, body and soul. One full year free from the constraints of alcoholism—a full year of healing both physically and mentally. A cleansing so to speak—but not some lame kale and spinach liquid smoothie cleanse—an actual, long-lasting life and behavioral cleanse.
An alcoholics’ life is chaotic, it’s comparable to a 100,000 piece puzzle scattered on a large dining room table. Alcoholics walk by the puzzle day in and day out—delaying the inevitable, and when feeling overwhelmed by the inevitable, we just drink and push it aside. And in the process, we push aside every important aspect of our life until we are alone, sitting on a bar stool or couch, watching tears drop into our cup. Sometimes, our cup fills with so much sorrow we just give up—and somehow convince ourselves that we deserve a life of sadness. It’s not our fault that we are alone—it’s everyone else, not us (the gloomy sarcasm of an alcoholic thought process). The sad part is that many of us had all of the elements, or puzzle pieces if you will, of an excellent life: wife or husband, children, supportive parents/siblings, jobs, etc., but we flipped the table over and watched the pieces scatter around the room.
Maybe, our puzzle at some point, was even assembled—and we let it slowly deconstruct into the hectic depths of alcoholism. In one of my blog posts I used the analogy of being in a deep hole with the dirt starting to fall in—I was burying myself in my addiction. A little hand pulled me from that hole–sat me down at the dining room table, and helped me start to put the puzzle together. I have learned that you can’t put the puzzle together without a strategy—it’s too stressful. And, you have to understand from the beginning that it’s a process—the puzzle isn’t going to be assembled over-night. You should invite friends, families and other support systems, if feasible, to sit at the table with you…help you connect pieces that you are struggling to fit together.
I am working from the bottom up—building a foundation. My puzzle, once completed, will consist of a family picture—my parents, my sisters, my daughter and grand children…all standing together with our arms around one another. Smiling, laughing with the waves crashing behind us on some beautiful beach. Dark skies will be in the distance— representing the darkness that existed before the light that now shines down on us all.
As I near one year sober—I reflect on the progress, the pieces I have been able to fit together. And I look forward to seeing where I’m at another year from now. If you have ever felt like I described in this post—just know that things get better, become more clear as long as you don’t get up from the table…don’t once again leave those that you love sitting alone trying to put the pieces together for you.