Hi Alcohol. I came to get down. Wait. Not that kind of down.

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I came to alcohol to jump around, to unleash the spazmodic, creative, wilding energy that is my birthright. But also to quell my fear about jumping.

Jump Around Lyrics by House of Pain VIDEO HERE

Pack it up, pack it in, let me begin
I came to win, battle me that’s a sin
I won’t ever slack up, punk you better back up
Try and play the role and yo the whole crew’ll act up
Get up, stand up (c’mon!) see’mon throw your hands up
If you’ve got the feeling, jump across the ceiling
Muggs lifts a funk flow, someone’s talking junk
Yo I bust him in the eye, and then I’ll take the punk’s ho
Feelin’, funkin’, amps in the trunk and I got more rhymes
Than there’s cops at a Dunkin’ Donuts shop
Sho’ nuff, I got props
From the kids on the hill plus my mom and my pops
I came to get down, I came to get down
So get out your seat and jump around!Jump around!
Jump around!
Jump around!
Jump up, jump up and get down!
Jump! Jump! Jump! Jump! (Everybody jump)
Jump! Jump! Jump!…

Source: LyricFind

So jumping and quelling :

So great that alcohol does both ! It calms me down enough to anesthetize the worry that jumping may or may not be the appropriate thing to do . It makes it Ok to jump, to be a jumper. To wear a jumper. To romp and wear a romper for that matter.

Alcohol told me I was a leader. No, that’s a lie. My brain told me I was a leader and alcohol let me believe it. Which was not entirely bad.

Im learning alot in this recent and literal Alcohol experiment. Courtesy of Annie Grace .

My Alcohol Dialogue number 43

ALCOHOL – Hey, thanks for drinking me. You look all glowy! I’m now in your body, did you eat?

ME: No , why would I do that?

ALCOHOL: I know, riggggght? Ok so in about 27 minutes , your going to feel me leaving , which will feel like a gradual buzz kill because it IS. That means you’ll need to make a decision .So just choose A or B and let me know when your ready. ASAP Preferably. Sorry, Im in a hurry.

ME: Of course, I wont leave you hanging.

ALCOHOL: Right you’ll only do that to yourself.

ME: What?

ALCOHOL: I love this song.

ME: I cant hear it.

ALCOHOL: So back to the choices below, Here they are .

A) Continue feeling good again from the brains homeostasis chemicals. Your sugar rise doesn’t get messed with (yet) Which means most likely: continued warmth, inner glow, euphoria. Simply continue this until you pass out or see 2 Judy Garlands when you’re watching her later on youtube. In the future, we will touch hangovers and arrested development that will come from this behavior along with less sexy and more scientific consequences.

ME: Sorry I spaced at “2 Judy Garlands”.

ALCOHOL (continues)

or B) Start to feel sad and bad. Feel the come down physically and then Brain will just look around for things to be wrong so that wrongness can match the come down and make sense.

ME: If I were leaning towards A, what are next steps?

ALCOHOL: Just have another drink before and half hour passes ( if your stomach is empty) Maybe 55 minutes if you ate . Or maybe order 2 to begin with. More Pro.

ME: and for B?

ALCOHOL; Yeah totally super cool. For B, Just like don’t have another “drink” drink. Maybe have a seltzer water I think they call it or plain water? Then go through witnessing your brain and body aching to drink, and also face some of the enhanced feelings you’ve ignored for 20-30 years. Along with the regular feelings of ” This bar is really loud and irritating”, “Im old”, “Oh wait, I’m not in a bar because of the Pandemic , so I guess I’m really loud, irritating ,old and so is the calico tabby.

ME: A. Final answer

10 Versions of my Higher Power. Starting with Tilda Swinton

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When I need connection with GOD or Grand. Open. Discussion.

I find the list below . Feel free to share your joie de vivre.

header image from article n The Guardian – A Bigger Splash: exclusive clip featuring Ralph Fiennes and Tilda Swinton

1) Tilda Swinton

photo credit @davidehrlich article on INDIEWIRE

2) This Poem by ee cummings

what if a much of a which of a wind
gives the truth to summer’s lie;
bloodies with dizzying leaves the sun
and yanks immortal stars awry?
Blow king to beggar and queen to seem
(blow friend to fiend: blow space to time)
— when skies are hanged and oceans drowned,
the single secret will still be man

what if a keen of a lean wind flays
screaming hills with sleet and snow:
strangles valleys by ropes of thing
and stifles forests in white ago?
Blow hope to terror; blow seeing to blind
(blow pity to envy and soul to mind)
— whose hearts are mountains, roots are trees,
it’s they shall cry hello to the spring

what if a dawn of a doom of a dream
bites this universe in two,
peels forever out of his grave
and sprinkles nowhere with me and you?
Blow soon to never and never to twice
(blow life to isn’t; blow death to was)
— all nothing’s only our hugest home;
the most who die, the more we live

3) Conan’s Star Studded Charity Song Famous Helping People Video

Famous Helping People - "Late Night With Conan O'Brien" - YouTube

4) Kate Bush

5) Gigi Hadids Childhood Home

Photography by Coldwell Banker in Architectural Digest

6) This Lavender Field

no copyright infringement intended

7) The color of the sky in “Land is the only thing that matters” scene in “Gone with the Wind”

Full video here

no copyright infringement intended

8) Nina Simone’s Cover of “Isn’t It a Pity”

AUDIO

9) The Idea (not reality) of the Stevie Nicks and Lindsay Buckingham relationship

Image Wikipedia Album Cover

10) Xanadu

ELO, rollerskates, Gene Kelly, Olivia, The Fashion, The Muses The Tone!

IM ALIVE VIDEO click here

Minus- The script and relationship

no copyright infringement intended
no copyright infringement intended
no copyright infringement intended

It’s Official. Drunk or Sober, I’m not Chill.

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This is not a post about The Pandemic or #BlM. Its also not a post about how to appropriately behave at societal rituals and obey decorum. I know how to and have done that. Yawn.

I have been foregoing alcohol for the past 55 days I had years of intermittent alcohol free ness before this. I just joined Annie Grace’s The Alcohol Experiment and It’s eye opening and Non absolutist. Relief.

As I move through more experiences drinking or not : I am in curiosity , discovery and dare I say whimsy about my preferences. My likes and dislikes : what charms me, what alarms me, and what school marms me.

Stillness -Love it. Chillness, No thanks. There are so many other people that do chill better than me. ( or pretend to).

I am an extrovert , I like people but preferably around an event or theme. (large or small) . I’m just not interested in sitting around and ONLY talking. I prefer there to be a game we’re playing, or movie we just saw, or project we’re working on, a book club talk? If we go to a concert I don’t want to sit down. Gross. Conversation or ONLY TALKING will arise organically around these activities and thats when it’s the best and most luminous!

When I was heavy drinking ,I needed to change things up after a couple of drinks. To stop the Chill before it gets frozen. During an alcoholic run/ binge, there would be maybe 1 drink or 1.5 drinks worth of chatter and then I would insist that it was time to dance now , whether in my living room, your living room , or at Oil Can Harrys. That drunk had it right! She suggested activities and drunk people followed. She shook it up. Then some people had kids and stopped following.

This is not a 20 something thing .This still is the case today, 32 years later. I mean, after a while the time for just talking is OVER. Now we have to play a game, sing karaoke, choreograph a dance, go swimming, or pierce someones’ ear.

What if this isn’t neurosis but VITALITY?

Not Infantile but Inspired ?

Before I thought, “oh you just get hyper when you drink and you must be very insecure to have to switch things up/control the situation. But what if I’m a curator of a better time. VARIETY people! People hire event planners to keep things moving. Mock dancers to break dance floor ice. I don’t know if its socially acceptable to continue to curate without the excuse of tipsy-ness ? I mean I guess as long as you’re inebriated, you may be more open to try my switch ups.

Aha! I don’t need to be drinking but I really need you to be drinking.

Whatever this fever is , Im going to follow it and try not to drink so I can be ok with it. More will be revealed.

When your 11-14 year old self fears rule your life. Again.

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This pandemic flavored sobriety has its perks. I can hunker down and withdrawal/taper, go on crying and laughing jags without a major audience.

But oh Boy, the Junior High fears that fire up are debilitating. Tapering of Benzos combined with being in quarantine has been heightening recall of Junior High survival skills. But then again maybe Junior High survival skills are especially being echoed right now with the wolves of divisiveness constantly nipping at our screen doors.

It was 1982 and I was the new kid in school. In Michigan . I was tan (just having moved from San Diego where I was a winner of several Disco dance contests) Before major boobs, Before fear of the Male Gaze.

When incest just meant romance in a V.C. Andrews book.

Fear is Fear is Fear , like I’ve mentioned in the post “Stop Grading your Problems”– your adrenal glands, cortisol levels, limbic system are all talking to each other the same way whether you are in danger of falling off a cliff or you’re 11 years old being terrorized by the girls in your new 6th grade class. It shock/hurts. It feels like poison.

Of course I had lied before. But conforma/lying really escalated for me during this time. The type of lies that ensured my safety and ascent on the Junior High Popularity scale. This scale is now called Facebook /social media platforms.

Back to Ms. Kinzers class in 1982 in pasty Michigan. First day. New Girl – Tan – Only the nerd girls are nice to me.

After class 2 boys approach me. One is a total fox , one his sidekick (unfox).

Hubba Hubba

The Fox: “What kind of music do you like ?”

Tan me: “The Village People”

The UNFOX: “Wrong ! ( makes sound of buzzer) You are so moded right now.”

What is moded? I guess Im not in Disco San Diego any more.

The UNFOX: “Disco is Dead “

FU&K ME! I have ruined my chances for favor with anyone ever again. Hello 12, Hello 13, Hello shame.

Tan trembling me: “What kind of music do you listen too?”

The Fox: “The Knack, Billy Squire”

Tan Trembling: ” Oh yeah, I know them.”

The Fox: “Yeah?”

Beat

I don’t think the Fox is totally done with me yet.

But they left me. Maybe the word “spaz” was uttered. Their exit is blurry due to my Caucasian flush.

Lesson learned. Do not lead with what you believe. I could get you shunned.

No doy.

10 snarky, shallow reasons to stay sober at your next bar outing.

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Lions and Tigers and BARS (reopening) Oh SH!T. You know who needs this list? I do.

Trigger warning – I am trying to refrain from Alcohol only. A little Cocaine is ok. Kidding only because I don’t care for cocaine but not kidding about the Alcohol free goal.

There are so many whip-smart people who write thoughtful books and analysis on alcohol abuse. They can lovingly awaken you to the Grace and Freedom of refraining. I will list them at the bottom of the post. But for now, let’s flip it!

10 snarky, shallow reasons to stay sober at your next Bar outing.

  1. Sonja Morgan* -just watch RHONY and see what the progressive effects are on Lovely Sonja. I relate to almost all her needs and desperation except the Famous and Rich part. And yes I’m picking Sonya not Leah. Because thru our societal lens, mess looks worse on her and me then it does on the younger and more nubile.
  2. I just got fillers and botox- I don’t want to fuck this up because I’m enjoying my filled face and it ain’t cheap.
  3. Smarter than you-My command of the Kings English recedes when I drink . I need my sober, silver tongue. Especially when I call you out succinctly on your passive aggressive behavior.
  4. Hypocrite snark- For All the people that said to me “I think you’ve had enough” , “Are you ok?” or ” I can hear you” :I can’t wait to 1) arrive 1.75 hours later then the outing starts and 2) confirm your buzzed demeanor and zing you with a comment perhaps in a different language. Or trip you in your heels. Easily.
  5. More noble than you- I will interview you if I don’t know you. I’ll develop 4 questions to ask you that are pointed and not about your work and remember your answers. Obviously I do this anyway sober or not but rarely remember 100% of answers.
  6. Mock not Cock- I get to try my first or 3 Mocktails
  7. Discern Boring Commoners- I will know for a fact if you talk mostly about yourself or if your mother taught you to ask questions of others as well.
  8. Do I care ? When drinking, I cared that you thought I was ok because I couldn’t sense if I’d read the room correctly or said anything untoward. I wanted your approval stamp in the aftermath proving I behaved. Now I can be untoward with full faculty. I can decide for me what is appropriate. I can change my mind 14 times too. I can do it wrong. I can sit with the fact that I only wanted your approval not necessarily your friendship.
  9. Sleeker than you – I’l most likely be at a dance class tomorrow and it doesn’t have to be early or late.
  10. More me then you – I glide into the establishment and have an intention for myself. This is for me. Not for you. Although I just cant fathom how you wont benefit.

As promised :Books on Varieties of Sobriety :

Blackout

Sobercurious

The Recovering

Hit so Hard

This Naked Mind

Alcohol is Sh!t

** Sonya Morgan may be as gorgeous and flirtatious and unburdened by alcohol as ever by the time you read this.

**** Of course I’ll do another 10 reasons after a couple of outings with less meow. Im sure 2 people will look forward to that.

When Gratitude isn’t Just a step to the left. Saditude b4 Gratitude

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Some days are “tra lala lala” effortless. Some are “Are you fu@king kidding Me!?”

When dealing with the latter, I don’t fall victim to immediately gratitude journaling. I need a bridge and a guide to Kumbaya. OR a river, a creek , a balloon, whatever. I need help with the transport feeling to get me to gratitude. I can’t Time Warp or Wrinkle in time there. This bridge step is un-skippable when Im ultra agitated or sad. I cant be all like, “Presto! Silken Scarves of gratitude surround me now!”

If you are glaring at an Instagram picture of your friend holding a yoga pose and you think “I believe in Peace Bitch”. Know that :

1) Tori Amos says that same sentence in The Waitress and 2) I’m with you.

So I grant ye permission not to be grateful for 20 minutes or 20 days. You will most likely slide into home plate of grateful much more easily without the pressure. Take however long it takes to do what you need to do to move in the direction of true North/Namaste.

This bridge could be bitching , writing , feeling, scream-singing, punching, crying, cleaning, smooshing, chopping, swaying, hanging, breathing, dangling or kicking , gerund, gerund, gerund.*
It could be none of those. Who says you have to end up at a journal unless that works for you. Some call this acceptance, but to me it seems a titch more dynamic than that word.

Finally you may arrive back where it is “just a jump to the left and then a step to the right.”

*Oh!, and sleeping

Too bad you’re late. You just missed my Virtue Signal.

Virtue signalling statements are used to enhance ones standing within a social group, often without a practical application of the opinion held.

Becky Pemberton
8 Mar 2017, 22:53
Updated: 8 Mar 2017, 22:58

vir·tue sig·nal·ingnoun

  1. the action or practice of publicly expressing opinions or sentiments intended to demonstrate one’s good character or the moral correctness of one’s position on a particular issue.”it’s noticeable how often virtue signaling consists of saying you hate things”

Now doubt this phrase begins to be bandied about again. Especially the day after the black square Black out Tuesday went mostly wrong. But there are people far more educated than me about the movement and Ill leave it to them to hash it out and provide commentary.

I reflected on the number of times I or others may have used a “type” of sobriety as virtue signaling.

“Well she’s not really sober because she had THC cactus nectar” OR ” He doesnt have a sponsor so…” ” She took a bite of of a rum cordial and had to reset her date”

It is my aim in this journey that sobriety or coming back from “relapse” not become a virtue signal.

Its taken several years to fall and get up and experiment. Before , My first concern was gathering virtue validation from others and THAT being the priority. That is finally receding a now. Hence the site “Define Sober” Today I have 30 days of planned sobriety-meaning I haven’t had any alcohol. I allowed myself to drink but chose not to. I could also smoke pot If I wanted to but have not had a craving. This Sobercurious time is giving my life a sheen of curiosity in all areas. How thirst quenching this has been so far! I’m wildly curious about what strength lurks beneath these lies Ive told myself and I enjoy not having a clue about what Life will look like since so many enchanting and daunting possibilities are bubbling up.

Whether you are sober , sobercurious , Curious, Curious George , or a Cat that has been killed and then revived by Curiosity; I look forward to all of us creating a new non virtuous, trickster signal so we can recognize each other.

That Creep in your Zoom meeting #4 Day25

Are you new or trying Sober and getting creeped out by Older White guys? You are not alone. If you’re a newcomer and identify as female and experience anything like this, here are some comments, and tips on how to navigate or unf*ck the experience and stay on path.

The meeting I go to are 85% white hence “creepy WHITE guy ” So this is only my experience. Pick your poison and your predator according to yours.

I went to CO ED AA zoom meeting and and identified as a newcomer. I received a private chat message from a regular in this group that said “I love you xxxxx” I have never spoken to this man When I received the chat message, I looked and saw who sent it. Ewwww. I did not reply and let the secretary know. It’s gross. Im older and have been around. What if I was new new?

WOULD THIS HAPPEN AT A MEETING IRL? NO

Stick with the women unless they drive you more crazy and don’t have what you want.

Try other 12 step meetings- PINK CLOUD is a great tool to find them and you can filter by Women only OR the focus of the meeting

use an alias /change your name if it makes you feel more comfortable

Try alternatives to AA if the guy and/OR the 12 steps are not a match for you- there are plenty of other programs and alternatives . Its all part of Life’s Rich pageant to find the one that works for you. Who cares how you get sober. I welcome you if you are trying or have tried.

Belle Roberston has a totally anonymous program

Kevin Griffin weaves the 12 steps and Buddhism Together and is an older white guy who is NOT gross or Predatory at all.

WFS is another Women centered resource

Other alternatives to 12 steps.

I need to remind myself that the good guys are plentiful in meetings too. I’ve met a lot of male folk who have helped me along the way over the years and who are NOT creeps. There are also women creeps. Sometimes Ive been a creep ( althought not in a sexual predatory way -more in a snarky gossipy way) than they have been. This doesn’t excuse or negate White male creepery, which is rampant , but paints the fuller picture.

Day 25 for me. Lots of zoom meetings involving ACA and AA and Alanon. It helps me. I also listen to Belle Robertson and Recovery Elevator, and Kevin Griffin. I Find more resources every day. I give 50% airtime to what I disagree with and 50% to what I espouse in these meetings, podcasts, blogs. Thats all I can hope for. I feel better after a meeting/listen and maybe I can help someone. So the pros far outweigh the cons in this Pandemic climate. When they don’t, I’ll know and I’ll keep discovering , ideally while remaining alcohol free.

#3 Benzo Enchantment Day 24

I am titrating off Ativan under a Doctors plan. I took 2mg at night for sleep.

And when I say for sleep , since I don’t mix it with alcohol now, it is ostensibly for sleep . I do long for the days of the effortless, elegant Ba-Bye at 2 mg. I started out years ago (maybe 10) with a .5 mg “when needed” and have become dependent on a larger dose. Its hard to say goodbye to the wafting hush. Yes, I know there are way worse cases. I remember Janice Dickinson on “Celebrity Rehab” But this is my case. Sharing this to help with accountability.

I have titrated down from 2mg to 1.5 mg. And now, the headaches and trouble falling asleep. The spin in the head that is great for writing for not for trying to reach alpha and eventually delta brainwaves.

On this sobriety experiment (day 24) , I have not been a daily or weekly drinker so I know it’s not the alcohol withdrawal. I have no clue whether this a high or low dose of opiate. I sense myself looking for permission to have withdrawals since i have it “pretty good”

I took a Tylenol last night to eradicate the headache. Is this even worse ? The lesser of several evils?

I had been going to sleep at 9:30PM and now am not falling to sleep until 1 AM or 2 AM. I am astonished at what a difference the absence of .5 mg makes .

I will now scour the other Benzo related blogs and compare my experience, dosage, and results.

On the flip: I am meditating twice a day, exercising (dance) 2-3 times a week and am losing my sweet tooth a little.

#2 Stop Grading your problems . Day 23 -“You mean all this time we could have been Friends?”

The last time I drank alcohol was not spectacular or worth a short film. On March 19th when The mayor issued the order that non essential workers in my city go home, I was not unhappy. The part time job was a necessary drudge that I showed up for the best I could. Let me also say I have known of no one in my small circle who has died or been catastrophically affected physically by COVID 19.

Loss. Grief. Fear. Whose is greater? Whose wins? Stop grading and take care of your own first. It counts. If you’re in your 50s and you’re trying to reconcile crepe-ing arms OR you are 40 and going through a loss of a parent OR you are 15 and getting bullied or you’re 55 and getting bullied OR your Public identity is OVER because of COVID 19, the body isn’t making note of the specifics. Do you think your adrenal glands, cortisol levels, limbic system are all talking to each other going , “Actually, lets just fire at a level 2 Fear because she should be over this shit”. No. The monster under the bed is REAL to your body. Whatever age or whatever longitude and latitude coordinates you occupy. #Compareanddespairanddonothing.

When the Pandemic order was issued , I hadn’t had a drink for 20 something days. I could just take it or leave it. My desire for alcohol was further lifted and I continued not giving a shit about it (meaning booze) UNTIL the beginning of May. Then I thought, I’ll have 3 beers. This was not a secret plan it was a declaration. An experiment. I was not “supposed” to be sober. Nobody but me was judging/not judging . I walked and bought a 6 pack of Racer 5 IPA from the liquor store. I still have the receipt.

Ensconced at home, couched with my partner, I took a sip. This doesn’t taste good. My body doesn’t like it. SIP. Its like too bubbly? But I really want this to work. SIP. Sort of tastes toxic. SIP. Its not that bad. SIP. It will be fun to host virtual game night with my friends tonight. REST-no sips. Game Night began, the sipping tripled. I was chasing the dream.

Later at 11:20pm after 4-5 beers and an Ativan , I laid on my carpet and drooled. Alone. My boyfriend was snug as a bug in bed. There had been no judgement or altercation. I imagined myself floating away and wanting to sink into the carpet ala “Trainspotting” This isn’t me. This is a sort of death but I’m not ready. I knew what I had to do. Purge and Primp.

I went to the bathroom and induced regurgitation. ACID extravaganza. The next day was lost to physical pain but I didn’t really experience the second arrow of shame which was UNUSUAL.

I’ve gone 5 years and 9 months and 2 months and 6 months without drinking in in AA but the large percentage of that time just felt like I was holding my breath and waiting for a reward from GOD.

On May 2nd, There was a monster under the bed that I skated over and I drank. I’m psychologically astute enough to know I don’t just drink because …whatever. I have no external problems compared to some and maybe a lot compared to the other “some”. As a human (most likely), I have the ability to face fear/loss and the requisite emotions that tap my on the shoulder and then throw bricks if I don’t pay attention.. If I stop grading and comparing my fear, “problems” then I can see them or it. CLARITY. Ohhhh!!! Fiona Fear how are you? Come to Tea this afternoon ( Buddhist reference I know) and I can say “FIRE, walk with me!” (David Lynch credit) Let’s be partners. If not friends then fellows ? fiends? In my experience , this lessens the burden and I incrementally lose the desire to drink , or to (insert buffering behavior)one friendly fear fire at a time. This is ACCEPTANCE and ACTION.

Now here I am with choice. Day 23 goal 30 virtual meetings in 30 days . MY preference is to be alcohol free NOT sentenced by shame to be alcohol free. Will I stay the course? I don’t know. I don’t have to know. I’m not throwing AA out but I’m adding Kevin Griffin and Belle Robertson and Recovery Elevator and this blog. I’m tracking Fiona Fear on an excel spread sheet.