Sometimes I feel better when I’m able to sit there and feel the pain, trusting it will pass, than I do when I try to force myself to be happy.
When people find out I don’t drink, for the most part, they are cool about it or don’t care. But, certain personalities ask questions about it. I don’t mind at all because it gives me an opportunity to talk about myself and that’s always fun. The one question that pops up a lot, usually from someone who drinks and can’t imagine not drinking, is, “Don’t you get bored?” I want to tell them, “Yes! It’s horrible. All I do is sit at home crying wishing I could drink. I stare at the inside of my wrists wondering which vein to slice open so I can drink the blood that pours out in hopes of feeling the same affect as a few shots of tequila.” I think saying something like that would make people more comfortable than saying, “How can I be bored when THANKS TO SOBRIETY my life is nothing but a magical experience here on Earth? Now that I’m SOBER all of my dreams have come true and I have never been happier.” People would HATE ME! Especially if I yelled the THANKS TO SOBRIETY part.
I think we’re all a little bit addicted to hearing the dark side of situations, that’s why the news only reports horrible shit. We love it! Do you wanna watch happy people talk about how happy they are, or do you wanna watch a True Crimeseries about a lady who takes a sledgehammer to her husband’s head? SLEDGE-HAMMER SLEDGE-HAMMER! Alright alright, calm down.
But to answer the original question: is sobriety boring? Yes. Sometimes. I have spent many nights bored out of my fucking skull. They say only boring people are boring, and to whoever they are I say, “Hello! You must be talking about me! Nice to meet you! What’s that? Do I want to go to a party? Fuck no! Okay, then have a lovely time.”
One thing I realized when I got sober was the amount of time I had to fill. I used to spend about five nights a week out at bars, staying out drinking for at least six hours a night (8 p.m. to 2 a.m.—this is a modest guess). So, I’d spend approximately 30 hours a week drinking. And my hangovers would last at least one day, sometimes two. So I’d spend about 168 hours being hungover. My schedule was booked!
I no longer spend most of my time managing the super high highs and the super low lows. There was something about being wasted and hungover that made me not bored. I was either drunk, feeling on top of the world believing the choices I made were the best choices, or I was hungover freaking out about those very same choices, baffled at the fact that they made sense to me just hours before. I’d wake up thinking I should check myself into a mental institution but first I had to get drunk again. My point is, I was busy! I wasn’t sitting around, I was managing the unmanageability! That took time and effort, there was no time to be bored.
In sobriety, there is much more time to do things and sometimes I just sit there. Especially at night, I have no idea what to do. I think, “Maybe I should have a baby, they scream and eat a lot and that would keep me busy.” Then I think, “A baby will probably make me want to drink. Ummm, maybe I’ll read a book instead of getting pregnant.” Then I’ll read a psychological murder mystery or watch a documentary about a serial killer or the Holocaust—anything to do with sick and fucked up shit—or if I’m in a better state of mind I might call a friend or go to a 12-step meeting. But, ya know what? Sometimes I’ll just sit there, bored. I might even feel sorry for myself. It feels comfortable to me sometimes. I’ll just really dig in and feel bad without making an effort to feel better. Read more “the fix”…