109 Days Alcohol Free: Mini Check-In

Many of you wrote in with such nice comments about my last post On Depression and Writing, all so kind. It’s lovely, the support on here. You people are divine. Thank you so very much.

I feel thankful and immense gratitude, despite having yet another downer day. I’ve completed a fair of amount of my school work with ease and am excitedly looking forward to a trip to Chicago this weekend. And lucky for me, my work week is already halfway over; with having this Friday off, I will be able to go to the gym (so desperately needed), finish my homework, meet my friend Jay to go dog-walking, and then hit up the local Recovery Yoga/Recovery Meditation Group downtown.

As for the creative writing group I started this weekend, there are already 51 (!!) members who have shown interest in attending groups, and my first two meetups toward the middle of November have nearly filled up. I am so excited. There will probably be some who decide not to come, or who no-show for some reason or another, but if even three or four people show up to each group I will consider it a wild success – success beyond what I though was possible even last week.

The group is a “free association” writing group. That is, the one main rule of writing is that there are no rules. The idea is to write whatever comes to mind for 30 minutes at a time, stream-of-consciousness style, and to avoid the impulse to self-censor or edit as you go. The hope is that the experience will produce a sort of freedom for catharsis, as you let your mind wander in whatever direction it chooses. I’m really excited to be cultivating that kind of writing space in my city and can’t wait to see what it turns into. Even if it’s a small collection of folks getting together every few weeks, that will be enough to keep my creativity tank full.

I feel a little sad, though, because when I told my boyfriend about how I created a meetup group, he neither asked me to talk more about it or expressed any general interest in my new creative pursuits. Normally, I’d expect a response like, “oh cool! that’s great!” or “wow, fun, what will you guys do?” But, I got nothing. Sometimes I wonder if I’m actually expecting too much, or if there is some greater thing missing that I’m not yet aware of. Either way, I’m kind of hurt.

I do still wish that there was a greater emotional connection between the boyfriend and I. We have plenty of fun, but a lot of what we do is merely a skate along the surface of what could be. And I’m tired of waiting for what could, should, or might be. As much as I hate to say it out loud (or, in this case, write it down), I feel like much of my current loneliness stems from feeling lonely in my relationship with him. More than that, I’m starting to wonder if we’re ever going to reach the level of emotional connection and deep intimacy through shared stories and words that I want. That level of depth doesn’t seem to be important to him. It doesn’t make him a bad person; it might just mean our communication & intimacy styles are mismatched. That there’s still more thinking to be done. And I’m afraid of what it could mean eventually, if something doesn’t change. But, I don’t want to think about that right now.

I don’t want to let that disappointment deter me. I’m determined to start making my place here, and I’m determined to find myself a community and sense of purposefulness that isn’t tied to my relationship, or to drinking. It’s not easy to put yourself out there when you get sober and start all over again, but over the past several months, every opportunity I’ve had to make myself vulnerable has, for the most part, yielded wonderful results – here, with friends, in AA groups, even with my boyfriend a little bit, as I’ve found the confidence. Finding my creative community will hopefully give me a greater sense of my bearings; as far as I’m concerned, the group is just as much for me as it is for the members.

I’ve needed this for a very, very long time.

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5 thoughts on “109 Days Alcohol Free: Mini Check-In

  1. sobersuitsme says:

    I have the same type of relationship. I am very lonely within my relationship. I am certain that that loneliness egged on my drinking. A lame attempt to fill me up with something. I, too, am not focusing on my relationship right now. I am focusing on me. Taking up painting, taking care of myself, stopping drinking, writing here. Filling up the loneliness with fullness and richness. Thank you again for sharing. I so appreciate knowing that I am not alone in the loneliness. Lonely and alone are two different things. Keep doing what you are doing.

    Like

  2. Anna says:

    I’m so glad that you’re determined to do the things that will bring YOU joy and help you explore your interests. Since I got sober, relationship stuff has been difficult. It’s easy to run from those emotions when you’re drinking, but when you’re sober you have to sit in all the muck to try and figure it out. Highly uncomfortable! But, I truly believe that the happier you are in your skin, the happier you’ll be with another person. xoxo ❤

    Liked by 1 person

  3. shehidbehindtheglass says:

    The worst feeling of loneliness is when you’re in a relationship. Try to keep focusing on you and doing the things that make you happy. The creative writing group sounds awesome and holy crow – 51 members already?!! That’s fantastic!! I hope you have an amazing time in Chicago. It’s such a beautiful city and so many things to see. Is it your first time going? The river boat tour is pretty fun and very informative if you like that sort of thing – the history of Chicago is amazing!

    Liked by 1 person

    • okayishness blog says:

      Thanks so much! I think the loneliness stems from us having two very different styles of communication, which is something we’ll have to figure out as we go.

      I’m hoping to have a great time in Chicago – I’ve been there several times before, just for short visits. The Cubs will be playing all weekend for the World Series, so I’m sure the city will be buzzing. Great time get some authentic deep-dish pizza and hang out for all the fun!

      Liked by 1 person

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