I’m trying to remember that alcohol causes brain damage and that my brain is damaged.
I think I’ve always been a bit of a miserable person, kind of unhappy, sort of strict and generally reserved. I thought it was a personality thing, but the memories that have been slowly surfacing since I moved here (and since I’ve been cutting back and haven’t engaged in a night of binge drinking since that bottle of wine right before my period) are indicating to me that I was happy once before this. Maybe many times.
It can take up to seven months for the brain to recover from alcoholic brain damage if the damage isn’t permanent already. Even one beer one night will follow my thoughts into the next day. I can tell when alcohol is still in my system just based on the tilt of my thoughts towards negative paranoia and low self-esteem.
Whenever I get a glimpse of the surface I want to pull back and have a beer as though I’ve accomplished something just to sabotage it. This pattern was very alive in my life once…build it, make it, create it, sabotage! And move on. An unconscious pattern clearly mimicking my leaning towards alcoholism or against.
I was determined the underlying issues of my alcoholism would be discovered and I could deal with those instead of quitting drinking, but it turns out my self-esteem cannot thrive under the influence. When I think back to six months ago and how I was drinking a couple beers a day thinking it wasn’t a problem and how could it have that much effect…let’s just say I’m not even the same person I was six months ago. She was insane.
Alcohol puts my body immediately in an intuitive, fight-or-flight head space and it doesn’t relax me as much as another version of me is convinced it does. In fact, part of the reason I have a hard time relaxing, if I’m honest, is that I don’t know what relaxing is.
As the alcohol goes away, relaxation reveals herself in this sensuous, wholly normal desire to take my time reading. Writing was something I used to rush through and I’m starting to stop in the middle of sentences, think, ponder, take my time.
This is the biggest thing alcohol, or really any addiction, takes from us—time.
How do you spend your time? What do you think about? Are they happy thoughts? Is it time we’ll-spent?