Day Seven

…and I have to say that I nearly leapt out of bed this morning, I felt so good. And this even after I stayed up well past the witching hour jonesing on that 4 p.m. coffee and reading Russell Brand’s Recovery — Freedom From our Addictions. I’ve been just snarfing down the quit-lit this month — this will be book number six in two weeks.

Did I mention I’m an addict?

I was still feeling a little uneasy about that initial meeting with my counselor after the first group meeting last night, and these lines from the book jostled-about something like three dozen little brass bells just under my scalp:

The positive aspects of my character were becoming redundant, it didn’t matter that I was bright, or kind or talented, these traits were being diluted to the point of irrelevance by the seeping negativity of my addiction. The unmanageability though has a disturbing and, in my case, demonstrable clause: when I yield control to that part of myself when I drink or use or say ‘fuck it’ around any destructive behavior, I don’t know when I’ll get my life back or what state it will be in when I do. The unmanageability at its heart means that there is a beast in me. It is in me still. I live in negotiation with a shadow side that has to be respected. There is a wound. (26)

It’s like the thoughtful older brother to that Raymond Chandler quote I’ve always loved, “I’m an occasional drinker, the kind of guy who goes out for a beer and wakes up in Singapore with a full beard.” This, I thought, this is why I drink, and this is why it’s time to quit. (Got a little twinge at the heart, writing that. Alcohol still feels like my best friend, and Quitting too big an undertaking to worry too much about.)

Isn’t it funny how we all (addicts) have such similar stories when every one of us, while in the thick of it, thinks he’s introduced some fresh new hell into the world?

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