It’s Cool To Be an Alcoholic

When did it become a normal thing to fetishize drinking tons of alcohol?

I noticed a while ago that a lot of shirts for sale have sayings on them like, “Rosé all day” “Coffee and wine, feelin’ fine” “Relationship Status: Wine”

I saw a girl wearing a wine sloganed sweater at the gym...
image from Target.com

I counted 11 different wine sloganed shirts on Target’s website alone.
I used to love wine. I still like it. I’m drinking a glass right now. But most of these shirts are probably being bought by underage teens. Kids who will grow up thinking day drinking is normal. And again, there’s nothing wrong with day drinking on its own, but when it becomes the norm, then how do you even know what a day without alcohol is like? How do you drive?

I’ve had far more fun sober days than non-sober days. Maybe I’m just getting old. Because I’m not that conservative. I’m just over people who know nothing about wine fetishizing it. Because I’m almost positive that the people who buy these shirts probably spend $25 on five bottles of cheap wine rather than on one bottle of good wine.

Maybe I’m just annoyed. I just don’t think it’s that cool to be an alcoholic.

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Staying Put

(I seem to write a lot of blogs in airports)

I just spent a week in California.  I flew into Reno last Monday and got to spend one day in Mammoth, my home, before venturing onward to Crescent City to be a part of an old friend’s wedding.  Back in Alabama, I was so excited for this trip, and everyone kept telling me to enjoy my vacation.  But I knew it wasn’t a vacation.  I don’t remember how to vacation.  I’ve forgotten how to rest.

My day in Mammoth I tried to run around and see people, but instead was monopolized by someone who cannot have my heart.  I had dinner with my parents.  It’s too hard when your minutes are too few.
My best friend and I drove to her parents’ house near San Jose on Wednesday, and onward to Crescent City, up at the top of the state, on Thursday.  We went to straight into Bachelorette party mode.  We drank and it was loud and I was tired.  Already drained, before anything had even begun.  My heart had been left behind me.
Friday we ran around picking flowers and finding teapots and books for bouquets and center pieces.  It never occurred to me that all of this wouldn’t be done before the day before the wedding.  My heart wasn’t there, I had left it behind me.  I was drained.  But weddings will never be about the bridesmaids, and it was so important that I do everything I can to make the day and all the preparations go smoothly.  I think I had forgotten what I was getting myself into.
The wedding day my dress was too long.  There were bugs and heat, and then sudden coldness, so I wore a sweater to the reception.  The bride was beautiful.  She is so in love, and there is no doubt that Josh is the one for her.  She has wanted this for so long.  But I simultaneously drank too much and not enough.  My heart was not there.  I lost it somewhere.
Yesterday my best friend and I drove 10 hours to be back to Mammoth so I could go to Lighthouse and see the people I hadn’t gotten to see yet.  However, after the whole day, the whole week, I didn’t want to see anyone.  I’m out of money and I haven’t eaten and all I wanted was to sleep, but there were things to be done.
I saw who I could, but left before any real conversations were had.  I got picked up for dinner by the one who has my heart, but was too tired to function.  Waking up with my memory erased.

I don’t regret this trip, but I regret this trip.  I regret coming home too soon.  I need to find my heart and drag it to Alabama with me.  I think it’s time that I stay put.  God keeps saying, “Stay put.”
I want to plan more trips, but I’m never going to be happy and rested in my travels if I keep trying to do everything all the time.  I want my life to be an adventure, but it’s time to learn to adventure where I live first.  Start small.  Embrace your reality.

So I told the one who has my hear to give it back.  I won’t be visiting anymore.  Not until I have someone to visit with.  Not until I’m healthy enough to be who I was, versus who I am.

Because I don’t have a drinking problem, but when I drink, I drink a lot.
I don’t have a drug problem, but if someone’s offering, I’ll accept.
I don’t have a guy problem, but my heart latches onto anyone who will let it.
I don’t have a money problem, but I forgot that moving to a different culture means adjusting to a different budget.
I don’t have an eating disorder, but it’s really hard to eat when your heart beats for someone else.

I keep finding all the ways that I am broken.  But in reality, I am one whole person.  We all have a story.  Maybe someday I’ll be able to share all of mine.  Maybe someday I’ll be able to be completely honest about why my heart is still broken, rather than broken again.  But until then, here’s one piece.  Just one more piece.

I’m breaking up with California.  I’m ready to be freed.

Road Trip With Me: SoCo with Lime

If you’ve ever gone out with me, you know that I hate taking shots.  I can’t just throw something down my throat, I have to have it sit in my mouth.  Thus, shots are horrifying.  My last Sunday in Mammoth, the boy and I went to see my friend DJ at a local bar/night life place.  We both had a drink and then the boy asked if I would do a shot with him.  He already knew the answer was no, but he begged me to try soco with lime.  I had no idea what it was.  But it was awesome.
In case you’re wondering,  it’s Southern Comfort with a lime added to it.

Sometimes you just need a little southern comfort.

When I was about fifteen, I made a friend on the internet *gasp.*  It started on a Christian Myspace alternative, then went to Myspace, and then to Facebook.  Over the years we’ve gotten to know each other, watched each other grow in life and in our relationship with God.  I’ve seen his life with his wife and now two little boys.  He’s seen me graduate, first from high school, and then from college.  He’s watched me struggle and flourish.  We’ve prayed for each other.  We’ve heard each other’s stories.  All with never actually meeting.  Well on Monday, we met.  See, he lives about 2 hours south of Florence.  So I drove down and we went on a hike and had dinner with his wife and friends and little ones.  And it was as if it was just normal.  As if it wasn’t the first time.  SoCo with lime.  I’ve always considered Ryan to be one of my good friends, but now I might consider his family my family.  My Alabamily.

Yesterday I went to a job interview for a job I really wanted and was offered the job while I was there.  They’re just waiting for my background check to come back so that I can process in.  And I signed a lease.  The first time I’ve lived truly on my own.  I feel insane.
So I’m sitting in my new apartment, utterly alone.  And it’s so empty, because I moved across the country with no furniture.  I obviously need things, but right now I just need to keep telling myself that I am content.  Because I will be okay.  I know that I am taken care of.  I know that I’ve made the right decision.  Now I just need my heart to settle.

Fully Compromised

Blue and red shimmers
Empire state building weddings
East coast overheard
Drunken conversations

This is not me
Though maybe it’s more myself
Than I have ever been
Tipping the scales of my broken heart
Never go home alone

No one wants to be on their own
Not tonight
Searching for something
That hearts can hold onto
As they break all over again

I can’t hear you anymore
And I feel as though I have nothing to say
I want to feel you
As I am carried through this
Kicking and screaming
Who will I be on the other side?

The heart wants what it wants
As the soul bends under the pressure
Tainted and stained
Can you still find me?
I just want to be wanted

Somewhere back there
The path disappeared
Following a rabbit trail
That leads to only the wrong places
Can you feel the love?

Wondering how far a person can go
Before they’re changed forever
Am I changed forever?
Do you even recognize me?

As though a rescuing needs to happen
Already saved
Maybe secure
With nothing left to hold onto

I think I used to be holding onto you
Until I let someone else hold me
Impure
Wash me clean

Inside of lies
Wondering where the truth is
As I fall on my knees
Sucked dry of everything
Begging for stillness
Except asking for nothing

Not even sure what I want anymore
Trapped inside a mess of confusion
No one can get me out
Only myself
Only I won’t

Refusing to remember who I was
Was I even happy then?
Fully compromised

The Thing About Life

I don’t think life ever turns out the way we expect it to.  Where I am right now, what I’m doing right now, is not what I would have in a million years would have dreamed for myself.  But somehow, maybe it’s better?

I remember being in elementary and middle school (I went to private school), looking forward to going to a public high school.  I thought it would be like it was on tv, and that cute boys would ask me on dates all the time, and that I would feel totally comfortable rejecting them.  I thought they would get shaky asking for my number, and that I would laugh and the whole situation would be adorable.  But high school wasn’t like that.  I had a lot of “boyfriends” in high school, but I can only remember going on one actual date.  Maybe it’s just me, but small town kids here don’t seem to be old fashioned enough to date.  Or maybe I’ve just never dated a dater.  But I digress (I tend to do that).
I thought that I would write songs, and that there would talent shows, and I would maybe become some famous singer.  I’ve always loved music, but as I kid I was much more ambitious about it.  As I grew, I realized that whatever talent I might have musically, it’s not good enough to live off of.  And I’ve always been okay with that.  Dreams were just dreams back then.

Finishing up middle school, I thought I might be a lawyer, but then I realized how many people hate lawyers (even though some of them do a lot of good).  I was hitting that point when I was kinda over school anyway, so I didn’t want to go to years of college to be hated.

Starting high school, I wanted to be an actress.  I tried out for plays, but I thought I was much better than the parts I was offered.  I loved theatre and musicals and singing and being someone who I wasn’t.  And as much as I loved it, I knew how many people thought it was lame.  They loved me, but loving them pulled me away from that life.
Looking back at that time though, as much as I loved theatre, as much as I still do, I don’t feel the same way about getting up in front of people and playing a part.  Now it just feels silly to me.  It’s hard enough for me to simply be myself.

As a fifteen year old I turned my life around and decided I was going to go into ministry (of all things).  I wanted to be a speaker and I wanted to help change teenagers lives.  Really, maybe I just wanted my life changed over and over again.  This is the dream I held onto the longest.  I fell in love with teaching others what I knew about life, and God, and love.  And then I went to college.
When I moved out of my little town and the world opened up around me, I realized it is much too big for someone like me.  How could I pretend to help others with their lives, when I couldn’t even figure my own life out?  I couldn’t hold myself together.  And my passion died.  It still hasn’t come back.

When I decided I was done with life and everything else, I began writing again.  And I fell in love.  I’m still in love.  But maybe my relationship with writing is kind of like a marriage.  I have to choose to love it sometimes, because I don’t spend enough time doing it these days.  I wanted to move to Portland and finish my book and publish it, or maybe go on a spoken word tour, or maybe just fall in love.  But none of these things happened.  I am almost back in my little town, somewhere I never wanted to be.  I am living in a house at a camp, working at a hotel, and feeling myself drift.
I am not becoming the successful person I thought I might be, but I like who I am.  I don’t really care that my life isn’t turning out BIG right now, because I’ve always been small.  It’s the small things we remember anyway.
So maybe I will finish my book someday.  Maybe I will be a successful writer in someone else’s eyes.  But right now, this is what I’m writing, and no matter how many people read it, love it, share it, or are impacted by it, I still see it as a success.  I’m still breathing.  I’m still writing.  And I’m still changing.

Right now I’m experiencing all the things that I’ve pushed away for the last few years.  I’m enjoying hanging out with new people, and drinking too much with friends, and laughing too hard at the things people say.  I’m enjoying making people smile, and flirting with foreigners who are just passing through, and actually making memories that are more than just hanging out with the same three people.  I’m enjoying going on dates, and figuring out feelings, and not knowing what tomorrow holds.  I’m enjoying feeling free, for the first time in a long time.

And it’s not what I expected.