Another Drinking Song

Almost every day as I get ready for work,  I stand in the shower and make a simple promise to myself.

“I am not going to drink tonight.”

As I drive to my job, I repeat my promise in my head and come up with all kinds of reasons why I should keep it.

“It’s Monday, there’s no need to drink on a Monday.  Plus, these jeans are digging into your gut and you look like a trussed up sausage in all of the new, smaller clothes you got for Christmas that looked so good on you.  You’re not getting any younger and you need to take care of your health for your sake, your girlfriend’s sake and your family’s sake.  Also, there is no need to drink on a Monday.”

Eight hours later as I leave work, the interior monologue has changed.

“Well, You can have a beer when you get home, but that’s it.  Just one to help you unwind after dinner.  Or wait til you’re gaming with your buddies and have it then.”

Three drinks later, I feel the same guilt and remorse as I do every day when I drink for no reason.  Sometimes I tell myself it’s justified after a hard day at work.  Other times it’s to help a gaming session be even more fun.  Then there are the standby excuses “it’s Thursday/Friday night,” or “you need it to help you sleep.”  After several months of my daily morning lie and evening capitulation, it finally the point where I stop and asked myself “is this a problem?”

Drinking has always been a part of what I do, for better or worse.  I get immense enjoyment out of finely crafted beer, wine and whiskey.  I hate getting drunk, but that happy two beer buzz sure helps cover over a lot of the doubt, fear, anxiety, sadness and self-loathing I feel on a regular basis.  Even when those feelings aren’t there, denying the urge to have a bourbon or IPA often leaves me wiggling in my seat.  It’s not the same full-body, my skin is on fire and I’m going to murder feeling that used to course through me when I was quitting cigarettes, but there’s a definite discomfort if I’m alone and there is no bottle in front of me.

I’m a little frightened by it.  I talked to my therapist about it and he is of the opinion that I can’t just come home from work, nap and then find an excuse to crack a beer.  I have to do more that feeds my soul and gives me the same happy tinglies as a sip of Jim Beam.  So here I am, writing and feeling the buzz of being creative.  I’m hoping that if I can find enough ways to give myself that same happy buzz, be it creative or physical exertion, my daily morning promise will stop being a lie.

I am not going to drink tonight.

~ by schlippo on June 29, 2015.

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