I‘ve been extremely retrospective lately. Kind of, “How did I get here,” look at past events.
I was, in my opinion, a pretty popular Senior in HS with the younger folks. Queen of the marching band. Not hard to be when you are 1 of 2 Seniors in the Band. I went off to college ready to grow and become someone special.
In college for the first two years I was pretty popular in my set, music majors. I’m not saying I was queen bee because I wasn’t, but I never wanted for alcohol or places and people to have fun. Whenever I want to do something, many people wanted to come too. It was a pretty amazing feeling for a late bloomer who only had younger friends. All age ranges wanted to hang out with me!
I wasn’t sleeping around or your typical party girl like your imagining. It wasn’t like that. The people I hung with wanted to talk mostly, walk around the city and discuss the inner workings of the world. Alcohol was a vehicle for me to relax, loosen up, be less anxious, be more vivacious and fun-loving.
I was drunk most nights. I remember most times and never experienced blackouts and people took care of me if I had too much but I never physically became ill. I was the life of the party and I thrived! It was great but the universe needed me to change. You can’t keep going like that without some sort of consequence.
I mean, yes a huge part of me changing was losing a good portion of my vision. No, it’s not related to that drinking. However getting sick and then losing your sight in places forever and realizing you may not finish your major because you can’t see to do it – changes a person. Yeah it wasn’t that bad, and yeah it’s barely a deal now but at 19 and 20… it’s like “Woah, slow your butt down!”
I realized drinking wasn’t helping me graduate. I decided I would rather spend time with Ry over many people. Which I suppose was another problem. I was that girl. The one that gets the guy and says, “Bye Y’all!” Some of it was people disliking him, sure but most tried to like him (makes him seem awful huh?!). Those three things my health, fear of not finishing school, and the new love I was experiencing, those things became the focus.
So naturally, it things changed. People stopped calling as I stopped drinking heavily. I stopped going out to bars and getting super drunk. I took a semester off to raise money for school and worked my butt off. I started to get into wine and some more interesting wine loving friends.
Now why this all matters is, lately I have been ruminating about how I ruined everything. Well maybe not ruined but how did I get here? I think alcohol presented a fictional view of who I was. I wasn’t always that person. I grew up and changed and became someone I think people maybe couldn’t relate to anymore. I became way more interested in saving my world instead of the world. In doing that, I really narrowed my view. I also had some people who cared no matter what but I narrowed my view so much I lost sight of a lot of them.
I was no longer drunkenly social. Which changed relationships and dynamics and just – everything.
I DO NOT judge anyone for leaving during my hard liquor days, or the wine days and Ry days. I was… different and I just wasn’t someone you needed for a life long friendship.
But I find, I don’t actually interact well without the liquor. Seriously. Maybe I’m just not fun. Maybe I’m not relatable. Maybe my anxiety and paranoia are too overwhelming when sober.
It’s been YEARS since I’ve been drunk and more than a year since my last drink (I am NOT saying I’m an alcoholic, I just drank socially, obviously). I worry about social interactions now, I worry I am too self-centered when I talk with friends, I’m afraid of offending people, I worry if past events will affect the current interactions or I have an overwhelming need to admit things or bring up stuff I shouldn’t. And that’s…
recently, I went to a girl’s night with this mother and her daughters. The daughter’s ages were from mid twenties to 11. We watched Moana and did face masks, foot scrubs (to our selves), manis and pedis and ate pizza. It was ABSOLUTELY the most fun I have had since the last visit I had at M & D’s house. (Which is beautiful btw) when I related this story to someone else, they thought I was joking. Who does things like that over the age of 14?
At the end of the night the mom and girls all agreed they wanted to keep me and the night was a success. I had loads of fun too. Yeah Ry was all grumble mumble your son missed you, but he knew I needed it.
And I do. I need to practice socializing. It’s not like I was a vagabond on the brink of losing it all, it’s just I have been so narrowly focused on health, school (now as an educator), and family (then Ry now Ry and CDubs) that my ass looked up and every damn body is gone. Just as I was warned, come to think of it by M! (I just texted him he’s probably like wtf is this crazy person talking about?! Poor M, I can be so confusing.)
Oh yes, yes it is sad. And yes I am sure tomorrow I will be like man, why didn’t I listen to him?! But think. What if I never realized? I just blamed everyone for everything and did not look at myself? Sure, sure some people left for reason less to do with me and more to do with life, let’s not overstate my importance in everyone’s life. There are totally people who haven’t given me one thought in the last 5 years. I don’t mean them, I mean all sorts of important relationships, or potential important relationships that I let go in favor of my own narrow view.
I’m sure opinions would vary on which ones and only God himself could say which ones I played a direct hand in. I’ll find out the specific details in the hereafter, possibly in surround sound?
Levity aside, I have to stress I do love my husband, my son is the most amazing little guy, and on a basic level I have a good job that fits me (everyone has parts of their job that they may not be good at or like as much as others, my disclaimer). I annoy hungry, I have little fun things in my life, and I look forward to things. I just look back now and say “wow…. ” and I’m lonely, it true but we can all honestly say adulthood changes the amount and frequency that we do interact with others.
I just think I can let go some of the bitterness I was holding onto. I can let go resentment. I can be wiser with the folks I have left and when I meet new folks try to be more involved at a level we can both enjoy. Lastly I can learn how to interact without booze. It’s important not only to my faith but my development as a person.
It’s just been a thought that’s been running around in my head lately. Luckily I am on vacation and these thoughts can run around and become fully developed instead of frustrating meanderings that end nowhere. Ah vacation has been good.