I’m a hypochondriac. Plain and simple.
To me, headaches are actually brain tumors forming and a cyst is some rare form of cancer. A pain in my calf muscle is a blood clot traveling to my heart—and that sinus pressure is an imminent and fast acting brain aneurysm.
I send my doctor photos and emails every other month convinced I have 3-6 months to live. He won’t say it, but inside he’s like: “this fucking guy needs to stop Googling shit.”
I’ve taken several measures to ensure that I am living a healthier life-style than say…3 years ago when alcohol was my liquid of choice. Who needs water, right?
I quit drinking. I quit smoking. I lost 25 pounds, and if anything, my resting heart rate and blood pressure are lower than ever. As I type this, I ask myself: is my blood pressure too low? If so, can I die from that? If yes, when do I die?
I wasn’t always like this. No, no, no.
I started thinking of mortality when I found out I was going to be a father. I remember the first time I got on an airplane after learning Lila was going to be born—I was in constant fear that, before and during the flight, the plane would crash…that I would never have the opportunity to hold my daughter, or be a father. I don’t fear much in life—but the one thing that scares the shit out of me is that I will somehow die and Lila will grow up without me. Or, that something will happen to her, and I won’t be able to overcome the pain of losing a child.
I literally had no real purpose in life before Lila. She is my reason for existing, and without her, there is nothing. I know that sounds dramatic, but it’s true.
I tell myself that my thought process is irrational. Even if I do get diagnosed with some terminal illness, I shouldn’t be spending my time worrying—I should live happily and anxiety free.
In the past, I drank my emotions away. When I felt anxious, I drank—when I felt sad, I drank—when life got overwhelming, I drank. I drank to feel nothing.
Now, sober, I feel everything—and it can be intense. I appreciate the intensity in which I feel and process emotions—and I pray for strength to always do what is right for my family. More than anything, I feel a pure and absolute love for my daughter, Lila—and my one true wish is that she knows how much her daddy loves her.
As we approach Christmas (or whatever Holiday you celebrate), I am one grateful mother fucker. Lila will turn 8 on Christmas Eve, and Ly and I will celebrate 9 months living together. Ly has been such a strong, positive influence on Lila and me. And, she just got a great job at Facebook—we are truly blessed.
I see people drinking and eating to celebrate the holiday—and you better believe I crave beers, shots of whiskey and/or bottles (yes, multiple whole bottles) of wine—but I resist. I resist because, when sober, I am happier, healthier, wiser and able to hold myself accountable. If you are putting down the bottle for the first time, just know that you can do it—and if you do it, you will become amazed by your true potential.
In 2017, I want to worry less and focus on living more.
Happy Holidays mother fuckers!