Do you ever have one of those moments when you end up at a stop light and think, “How the hell did I get here already? Did I already pass____________?” And you aren’t drunk, high, texting, or otherwise disengaged in the driving process. I know scientists have a name for this, but it eludes me at the moment.
That happened to me earlier in the week, and it got me thinking. How much of my life has been a blur? How many times have I ended up in a situation, a feeling, a moment without really understanding how I got there?
Well, when I was drinking, that was a common occurrence. I would end up at a bar, in a hotel, my own bed, even a conversation- not recalling how I managed to get there. While those reflections do not represent the proudest moments of my life, they are still a part of my life. Worthwhile? Sure, because there are many lessons there I need not repeat.
But what about the times when I have simply flaked out? Nose in my ipad, zoning out in front of the tv, walking aimlessly around a mall? Most of those times were the morning after drinking so they include a hangover, fatigue, and the whole bucket of emotions that go with drinking.
Even still there are times when I have been simply unplugged. Those are the times that concern me. (Please do not read this as I am in denial and am not recognizing my alcoholic ways. I get that, but I cannot change or continue to reflect on the way I was under the influence; I will save those for the steps when I make my amends.) What I want to know is am I unplugging because the feelings are tough? Or is it a situation that has a simple fix but I am too damn stubborn to look for the solution? Forever checking my motivations; this is a new pattern for me- sometimes too little too late, but eventually the checking happens.
Sometimes, I feel like it’s the lady at the border patrol saying, “What is the reason for your visit?” And I look up and say, “Personal.”
How did I get to be my age and not know some basic things? It’s called growing up in an alcoholic home and not being allowed to feel, to think , to grow. Then, couple that with moving into adulthood masking feelings with alcohol. It’s no wonder I freak out at Starbucks. I am inundated with choices which I am not accustomed to doing. This is an unfamiliar road for me.
But, today, the road is not too bad. I have the ability to look at where I am personally, professionally, spiritually and assess where I’d like to be. The greatest moments are when I feel good just being where I am. I like knowing that some days I can just be.
So, how in the hell did I get here? Well, journaling, AA, my lovely sponsor, my sober friends, blogging, therapy and not drinking. I have had to It’s refreshing to have a clearer idea of where I am today. And while I may not always know how in the hell I got where I did, I do relish the notion that at the very least, today, I have the ability through the grace of God to question without shame, regret or embarrassment.