Day 264 Alcohol Free

Hi sober friends. I’m here! On day 264 of my sobriety. 3/4 of the way through my first year. woohoo.

I want to say thank you to all who showed me support on my last post. I was in a vulnerable emotional state that had been following me around for a while. Something having to do with my relationship issues, school stress, feeling lonely, blah blah blah. I’ve started doing some research on low-cost/affordable mental health clinics in the area, where I might be able to find a therapist who works within my graduate school budget. Even if I can get just one session in every other week, I think I’d be majorly helped in the long run.

I think I’m feeling better, though. For the most part I’m doing OK. I’ve been trying to gather my wits and prepare myself mentally for the next 30 days or so, since I’ve got a wild and crazy month ahead of me in April: I’ll be traveling the first, second, fourth and fifth weekends of the month, with the last trip being an extended, 10-day-long stay out on the East Coast for school training. In addition to all this, I’ve got five separate school papers to write before my last trip, 20 separate forum postings to make, a Doctor’s appointment, two concerts and a bridal shower. Not to mention, my full-time job and my 5-hour-per-week freelance gig.

No wonder I feel like I’m going crazy. No wonder I feel a little desperate sometimes. I enjoy having a busy-enough schedule, but when it gets to be like this, I get really antsy and anxious and demotivated to take action. Add into the mix a friend who needs me as a rock in her life as she goes through family stress and a boyfriend who, in his own words, “sucks at emotional support,” you’ve got a recipe for some sort of disaster.

Sober folks, I can’t stress it enough, even though I’m crap at heeding my own advice: TAKE TIME FOR YOURSELF. Recharge. Have an afternoon off. Hire a babysitter, tell the S.O. you need some me-time, drink some fancy tea or a smoothie, lay on a blanket in the grass or watch you favorite movie. Whatever it is that brings you some peace, make time to do it. Don’t be like me. Don’t over-extend yourself and barely live through it, only to make the same mistake later.

I keep telling myself that all I need to do is make it through ’till the 28th of April. I just need to keep my focus, maintain my cool, and do the work that needs to get done so I can glide into my 10-day trip to New Hampshire without pulling my hair out, or rage-quitting my job (which would be horrible – I actually like where I work!) I keep prepping myself mentally for what this kind of busyness means for me and my mental health. I keep reminding myself that this isn’t forever, and that the pain I feel now will be for the betterment of myself and others down the road.

But damn, if it isn’t hard. It would be easier if I was one of those people who took pride in always being busy and unavailable. But I don’t. I take pride in putting in hard work and seeing results, but if it comes at the expense of my sanity, I know that eventually I have to take a step back and see where I can trim some of the “busyness” fat.

It’s all a big learning process. Getting to know my own limits through sobriety has been quite the gift, even when it comes with stumbling and grumbling and midnight-oil-burning sessions that leave my brain fried and my heart tender. I am starting to really, really understand that I can’t be everything to everyone. I can’t be the straight-A student while being the top performer at work, the most attentive girlfriend, and the perfect roommate. Something’s gotta give. The big problem I keep running into is this: WHICH part do I allow to slip? How can I make such a decision? I guess that’s all part of the continued learning process behind getting sober, knowing thyself and understanding where it’s appropriate to draw your boundary lines, especially for yourself.

All in all, things are OK. They’re fine. I’m not super happy, but I’m OK with that for now, and I’m OK with getting through my commitments for the month, so I can finally start looking forward to summer. Of course summer will have its own set of problems and commitments, but we’re just…not going to think about that for now.

Again, thank you to everyone who extended their kindness to me in response to my last post. It was lovely to have such support from my lovely cohort of sober internet “friends.”

❤ Em. Day 264.

5 thoughts on “Day 264 Alcohol Free

  1. mikeykjr says:

    Your post is like looking in a mirror for me years ago when I was doing exactly the same thing: going to school full-time, working graveyard full-time, staying active in AA as much as I can and helping others more than myself. You’re absolutely right, “TAKE TIME FOR YOURSELF!” I have this sneaking suspicion you probably don’t like you should, right? How can I? I have all these responsibilities? Many of us went through the same thing, so you’re not alone. I still struggle with this today. It’s just my personality, like yours, to constantly be busy. But my sobriety always came first because without it, I wouldn’t be here today. What do you trim? The graduate school and work are essentials; work through those two the best you can. Do you really need to strive for that A? It’s the end result – graduating that matters, not the grade. So you get a B or a C, does that really matter at the end of the day? If your like me, it does but when its put on the resume, does someone really care about the GPA? I have two suggestions: 1) Take the day by day approach, as hard as that may be. It’ll all get done before you know it. 2.) I was/am co-dependent (a relationship addiction). This kicks my arse every time. You have to help yourself before you help others. The only way the other person is going to learn from the relationship is making her own decisions, falling (if it happens) and getting back up. If we keep getting involved, they become dependent on us for solutions to their own problems. It only causes problems for both of us. Just step back a little or a lot depending on your involvement. 3.) Take at least one FULL day to do nothing but something you enjoy. On your day off work, a day/night you’re free from school – do something for you! Call up friends and go to dinner or a movie. I’ll disconnect the keyboard and zip the mouth now – LOL. Keep it simple, one day at a time. 🙂 I hope that helps.

    Liked by 2 people

    • okayishness blog says:

      Hah, you’re very right, it’s not often that I take a day 100% for myself. I rarely feel like I can. It seems like everything else going on in my life – all the school work, the work days, the boyfriend, the socializing – all of those things that are happening in my life take precedence over ME, the one having to juggle and put up with it all.

      It does help to know that I’m not the only one who struggles with prioritizing myself over the “things” in my life. One of these days I’ll get it right… 😉

      Liked by 1 person

      • mikeykjr says:

        A friend of mine, who’s been battling Stage 4 Pancreatic Cancer for years now, does one thing a week, by herself, for herself. She goes to get a manicure/pedicure for an hour. Everytime she posts it on FB, it inspires me to do the same. But, like you, when, where, how, is it that important? The answer is YES 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

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