I AM AN ADDICT
*I take a breath* Boy, that was vulnerable and there is a ton of shame and blame that goes with that statement, even now.
I have always known I have an addictive personality. I obsess over the smallest thing, for example: right now, I have TWO pkgs of cayenne pepper open in my cupboard, TWO!! I only need ONE, how much cayenne do we think we need? why would someone open a new package when there is already one open? and I am trying to decipher a way to combine them without wasting and without cluttering up the spice cabinets… I do not like clutter. I call it house talk. Sometimes, its too loud and I will clean off all the surfaces in our house – my family comes home and thinks we look poor, but I, I can finally breathe again. But, what am I going to do with the spice cabinet!?!?!! (are you noticing the O.C.D?)
I do this with my sock and underwear drawers, all my drawers really – I have stopped organizing my family’s things though: I contain myself to the common areas and MY personal things. I de-cluttered my daughters string collection- in 2010 – that almost got me emancipated from my youngest.
This (albeit obsessive) behavior has helped me in my life, I have been a dog with a bone when it came to my family’s health and well being, I have stuck to my guns creating a business and a life that I love, I am relentless in my pursuit of success as I define it. It helped me while I was competing to have tunnel vision, obsessing over the workouts and what to eat – make no mistake it is addiction. Something happened when I started using things, activities, and substance to disconnect from how I felt, from what was REAL around me.
Here is the blame part – I blamed circumstance, – I just had a bad day, the amount of wine just got away from me, Mike was pouring, I had a great day – lets celebrate, I had a bad day I need a glass and just want to veg out… the list could go on.
I stopped doing what was important to me, the things that fill my cup… the only way Mike could get me to be a shadow of myself is if I had a glass of wine or two. I stopped talking to him – except when I had wine.
Here I sit, still with the blame. We were in a shitastrophy of a season in our marriage and I felt like I DESERVED a glass of wine. THEN I made a goal to compete again and I quickly sabotaged it because I tried to work in the wine. This sounds crazy to me now, I wanted wine more than I wanted my goals, and I would rather drink my calories than eat them.
As it turns out, every time I had a glass of wine to numb a feeling- I have had to go back to that feeling and ACTUALLY deal with it. I have had so many gremlins talking in my head and rather than addressing them I numbed them. I threw them in a cage and put a blanket over them and shoved them in the dark corner of the basement inside me.
So, on a fateful night in February I sat having a tough conversation with some family. Every moment that was too hard for me to look at, I took another shot. I probably don’t have to tell you that my body rebelled and I did not keep it all down, and the following day was the worst… not only did I feel my age (plus+ years for bad behavior) I was shamed by my daughters reaction. She had some things to say to me about my behavior that were so true it made me mad. Knowing what I know about anger, I know it is just an emotion that has not yet been identified. I began to do the work of identifying all the things and I put the time and energy into releasing a lot. I got really real and went to a “meeting” with a close friend of mine.
Long story cut short and 4 months on the other side of it, I can say: We all numb in some way at some time. We use a multitude of tools beyond drugs and alcohol. Just to name a few: Social media, TV, Video games, Sports, Books, Religion, Pornography, Alcohol, Exercise, Running, Chocolate cake, Potato Chips, Kids, Meditation, … Do I need to go on or do you get the point? Addiction is simply the numbing to the extreme. Anything that takes us out this Emotional Moment– we are numbing to the NOW! Anything that effects your quality of life and has impact on those around you. Anything that you obsess over and want at the expense of something valuable could be classified as addiction.
Did you know if you numb one emotion you numb them ALL. We are not able to numb specific emotions or moments. In my decision to live wholeheartedly it is a choice to stay present, fully in the moment, which means that I live clean, this extends past alcohol and into my lifestyle of food and surroundings. Living wholeheartedly requires that we be present for all of it. For me to be present I know that food and alcohol greatly affects me. I choose to stay present in my relationships and I am grateful for my Tribe that has seen me through this season.
I recognize how my addiction has manifested itself in this day – and today its not a glass of wine it is the cayenne pepper in the cupboard. 😉
What do you need to be present with?
How do you numb the difficult moments?
What is blocking you from being present?
Is there any help you need to live wholeheartedly?
These are just my thoughts from here <3