"Every living creature on earth dies alone." - From "Donnie Darko"
What has bothered me in the past has actually been the fear of being a living creature on earth living alone. Being alone.
Moments of uncomfortable silence surrounding me. That silence encouraging me more and more to get up and get my ass down to the bar. It may not be the main reason I drank all the time, but it was certainly an influence.
I've stayed in relationships too long because, when it came down to it, the thought of being alone was too scary. Then I reinforced that with the fear of not wanting to hurt someone else.
(That's really something, by the way. Not being honest about your feelings because you're afraid to hurt the other person, so you pretend and hide them...until it all comes to a head and you really, really hurt them. That's another issue...better dive into that one later.)
A few years ago, being alone meant isolating myself "in a basement room...with a needle and a spoon...and another 'girl' to take my pain away."
I mentioned in a past blog on fear that I've been trying to face my fears as they rear their ugly ass heads. Well, thanks to Travis County, my 6-months "away" put me in a position where I was never by myself. Ever. Shower and bathroom breaks, semi-alone. If you were around people you really like in closed quarters, you'd probably feel like throttling them after a month. I was not around many people I really liked. It was maddening.
I wanted to skate. Take a walk. Sit in silence under a tree. I wanted to have 10 minutes pass by where I didn't see another person.
It's been 90 days now since I've been out. Wow, 3 months. And right now "being alone" no longer means isolation. It's solace. My schedule of working until late evening and then staying up to blow into a breathalizer at 5am has turned into a huge positive. I am the ghost that haunts the sober house. 4 in the morning is great, by the way. Step outside and no sounds of traffic, clear sky full of stars...nothing but the sound of my zippo and the gears in my head turning as I try to write some shit.
I now have two favorite moments of my day...skating to work and writing in the dead of night.
As for that scary anxiety-filled thought that sneaks up on me and says "hurry up and fix yourself so we don't die alone over here"...I don't know. All I could do is continue to be honest with myself and with others...continue to confront fear and anxiety and fight them tooth and nail every day. I said to a dear friend of mine, "Being acutely aware of your issues is irritating." I almost prefer to be ignorant and self-centered. "Hey, this is just who I am. Deal with it" vs "My codependency issues have joined forces with my intimacy issues and I'm being a douche right now. Shit."
Work in progress.
Well, housemates are waking up. I am no longer by myself. Bedtime.