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Walking

I’m on day 54 of the 100 day challenge!  Woot!!

To celebrate day 50 I went for a nature hike.  I explored two areas that I have not visited before.  Since I have only lived in this part of the country for two years there are plenty of things to check out that are close by.  I’ll post some pictures from the hike at the end of this post.

Nothing very exciting to report.  Day 50 was just like any other day.  Once I hit day 100 I don’t think that I will pay much attention to the accumulating sober days.  Temptation has been few and far between.  Whenever I get a little urge to drink it is usually easy to suppress.  I find that the urge comes fast, and tends to leave just about as fast.  It never seems to be a prolonged fight.

The other night.  Right around day 50 in fact, I had a crazy dream.  In the dream I was drinking and it horrified me!  When I woke up I was tremendously relieved that I indeed had not drank.  I guess I’ve done a good job of mentally conditioning myself to despise alcohol hehe.  The thought of drinking no longer is associated with warm fuzzy feelings or good times.  It’s just pure revulsion.

It’s the weekend so I am back at the lake.  Grandma went in for a routine doctor appointment yesterday and they decided to send her to the hospital.  Looks like she is going to be there for at least a few days.  Being 92 this is not unusual.  The good thing is that not all of the hospital trips are a big deal.  Some of her ailments tend to be mysterious.  The doctors just can’t figure it out.

Being here alone has led to a very nice relaxing Saturday.  I miss having Grandma around but it’s also nice to enjoy the beautiful weather by the lake and just chill.

Everything else is going well.  My diet has continued to move in a more healthier direction.  The binging on sweets is over.  I knew I would get sick of that 🙂  I’m starting to incorporate more fruit now and I am back to my normal weight.  I would like to build some muscle but I’ve never been very good at adhering to an exercise routine.

My positive attitude and good mood are also sticking around.  That’s nice!  I’m still not using my personal time to do all the things I want, but that is ok.  At least I am not drinking.  When it comes to being more responsible and motivated I am willing to give that some time.

Here of some hiking pics.  Enjoy!

– BST

Yesterday I had a good day.  It was nice to have a good day because over the past few weeks they had been few and far between.  Finally, yesterday it changed.  I started the day with a nice walk outside and then took care of some errands before I went to work.

Work was fine, it usually is.  It’s my personal time that is always the issue.  That is when I struggle with motivation.  The simple fact that I took care of some of the errands made a big difference.  I also think that the beginning of the day walk is a very good thing.  I might have to try and do that more.

I get done with work late in the evening and I’ve been starting to hang out at the bar across the street  more often.  I live in a small town and it’s really the only place I can socialize.  Being in the bar does not seem to be an issue in terms of temptation so it’s been ok.  I just drink my Ginger Ale.

What I have been doing is beginning to experiment and practice normal socializing skills.  I realize now that when I was drinking I actually did not socialize very much.  I knew who most of the other locals were who hung out there every night, but I never sat down and talked with them face to face.  Now I am purposely forcing myself to talk with everyone there.

This is different for me.  I’ve never been outgoing.  I can tell that it is already working.  Instead of just being a lump sitting on a stool I am now an integral part of the “regulars”.  People don’t just know my name now.  They really know who I am.  It’s been fun!  And then when a stranger comes into the bar I enjoy going over, introducing myself, and getting to know them.  That is soooo not like the old me 🙂

So, a lot of things are going well.  I’m not drinking.  I’ve been interacting more socially instead of hiding, and I feel good about what I’m doing.

The only area I need to keep working hard on is achieving my personal goals.  This is where motivation and using my spare time come into play.  This area is still difficult.  I have dreams of all these tasks I wish to work on during my non work time and I rarely seem to dig into them.  I’m going to start easy and just try to work on something small each day to get me into the groove.  Just like yesterday when I took care of a few simple tasks and my whole day was better.

Time to wrap up this post.  I’m going to go out for a walk.  Later I will head back down to the lake for the weekend.  Most likely I will be staying at the lake almost every weekend now.  It’s close to my job so I save a couple trips back into town.

– BST

I don’t know what to really think about this week so far.  I was going through a depressing patch the past couple of weeks and now things have been better.  But of course life is not a bowl of cherries and there has been some up and down.

I felt just downright weird when I got up today.  That led to feeling down again.  The usual stuff.  I’m accomplishing nothing.  I’ve wasted my life.  My brain is broken and will never work the way I want again etc etc.

When this happens I have a surefire way to make things better.  Just stop everything I’m doing, go outside, and walk.  The fresh air, the sun and the exercise.  It really helps.  After a walk, and taking care of a few errands I was feeling ok again.

I’ve been very lucky that when my mood turns sour I don’t feel the urge to drink.  In fact, when I’m at my worst and feel that my mind is beyond recovery, drinking is the last thing I want to do because I just want to hold onto the last shred of sanity I have.  Drinking just sounds like a good way to go fucking crazy rather than a helpful relief.

I do not need to devote much time to struggling with drinking.  Staying sober just seems to happen.  Whenever the evil alcohol pops into my head with ideas of drinking It’s usually easy to think up a perfectly rational excuse not to drink.  I must have finally disgusted myself to the point where alcohol is just anathema.

The struggle seems to be somewhere else.  A friend of mine had issues with depression her whole life and she always told me that she was defective.  That is exactly how I feel.  A defective part.  The older I get the more hopeless it seems.  I’m not “normal”.  I can’t do the things “normal” people do.  As I age I become ever more far removed from the societal norms. I’m a fucking freak show.

It’s getting to the point where I’m not even sure that I can work in job environments with other people.  I make it through my job each day, but I feel as though I’m expending a tremendous effort in order to do the routine tasks and “fit in” with the others.

I think my ideal job would be locked up in some crazy mad scientist lab or some shit.  I’m probably a perfect candidate for some bizarre NSA super secret research project.

So what am I to do?  My resume is starting to look something like this.

  • Can work well with others, but really wishes I didn’t have to.
  • Full of crazy thoughts and ideas that very few seem to comprehend.
  • Interested in meticulous analysis of everything around me.
  • I enjoy staring into space and doing absolutely nothing.
  • If I could be paid to read books all day.  I would.
  • I’m a futurist.  I design, plan and pontificate on future technology and society.  (Someone needs to pay me to day dream, seriously)

I could go on but I better stop 🙂

You ever see that documentary of the guy who lived up in Alaska all alone most of his life?  He built his cabin and all the things he needed to survive.  It’s a fascinating show.  Sometimes I think that would be my ideal life.  Society does not seem to want, or need me.  Maybe I’m better off alone in the woods where all my work and decisions have real life and death consequences.  I seriously think I would be perfectly fine with that life.

Well, I don’t think that is gonna happen so I’ll just keep struggling along and hope that someday I get lucky and stumble upon something that works for me.

Ideally I should really start my own business.  That has been the obvious choice for decades now.  Being sober seems like a great opportunity to finally act on this.  Now I see the bigger problem.  I’m not drinking, and yet I still cannot motivate myself to achieve my goals.  Whats up with that!!!

The hope that I cling on to now is that as I am sober for a longer period of time my mind will continue to heal and maybe that motivation will finally come.  Sobriety is not the cure for laziness it seems.  FUCK!  ;-p  Gotta keep searching for that one hehe.

Lets end on a happy note.  Here is the sunset from last night.

– BST

After work tonight I hit the festival.  Once again I passed on buying a wrist band for the beer garden.  I sat on a wall for a bit watching the band over the fence and quickly determined that they were a pretty shitty cover band.

Did a few more laps walking around the festival and the carnival area, then stopped into the bar.  I had a really good time tonight.  With the festival going on the bar was busier, and very lively.  I met some new people, and chatted with a lot of my old friends.

I rolled with ginger ale again tonight.  I get the feeling that I’m going to turn into a ginger ale aficionado.  That and tea hehe.

The festival was a good test.  This event is completely designed around alcohol consumption.  I saw a shitload of hammered people, and I’m sure I’ll see more the rest of the weekend.  The temptation was there.  It was not a sharp temptation.  It was in the background, kinda dull.  It was also fleeting.  Within moments it would go away.

As the night went on I got stronger and felt better.  At the end of the night I relaxed on the bench outside in front of my apartment.  There were drunk people stumbling up and down main street and a few that could no longer walk being dragged by their friends.  Watching this at the end of the night always gives me a sense of strength.  It reminds me of what I don’t want to be.  Yes, it is always rewarding at the end.

Well, I managed to stay up VERY late tonight hehe.  It’s 4am.  *yawns*.  Oh btw that means I have officially passed the 1 month mark!!

– BST

This is it.  The biggest festival of the year hits town.  It’s a beautiful sunny Friday afternoon and the crowds are already out.

Last night after work I walked around for awhile and then hung out at my favorite bar.  It was overall pretty quite, and I did not hang around long.  Tonight after work should be different.  I expect the town will be packed to the rafters.  Usually on the festival weekend the bars are so full you can hardly move.  Should be some interesting people watching.

I’m sure I will run into a lot of people I know.  I ran into a few peeps last night, and had some good conversation.  Of course, I also had to deal with a few random drunken conversations.  When I was drunk I must have been oblivious to these weird drunken talks.  Drunk people seem so much more drunk now LOL!!!  Slurring, drooling, unintelligible gurgling hehe.  Frankly, it shocks me a bit.

Is there a story here about the life of average Americans?  Or, a story about humans in general?  Is this really where we are?

When I was young I wished that I lived in the far future.  Present day society always seemed so primitive 🙂  I’m not gonna lie.  Going sober can reveal some stark truths about life.  During the days of drinking my brain was weakened and more susceptible to the placating media, and soothing control structures that keep you working like the little cog in the machine that is wanted.

Even under those conditions I was the cog that never fit.  Always causing problems for the machine.  Never “fitting in” just right.  After a month of sobriety my eyes are open again, and the brain is recovering.  The shocking truth is now in my face everywhere I go.  I can’t just put my mind on cruise control and slide by.

That’s ok.  I would rather be aware and freaked out, then oblivious and content.

Time to go and enjoy this wonderful day.  I can smell the festival food wafting through my window.  I better get out there in the sun.

– BST

Day 26.  I’m past the quarter mark for the 100 day challenge!

Still going strong!  Temptations to drink have not been a problem.  The only thing I have really noticed within the last week or so is that I do feel different.  Like I’m a different person.  Now I have to take some time to get to know that person 🙂

I don’t always feel good.  I didn’t turn into a sobriety super hero by any means.  I just feel different.  I find my self doing things I usually would not have done in the past.

I have not been to the bar since that first visit a couple weeks ago.  It was fine.  I just find that I’m not hanging at the bar as much right now LOL 🙂  Last night after work I was thinking that I would stop in again.  I got home from work and chilled for a bit, and then went out for a late night walk.  I did a loop around one part of town, and then came back around towards the bar.  I saw some drunk people around main street.  I could hear unruly sounding drunk people from the bar as I approached.  This was right around midnight and things in town were hoppin.

I stopped.  Thought about things a little bit.  Stared up at the moon a little bit.  Aaaaaaand, just kept on walking hehe 🙂  The bar sounded annoying as hell!!!  I just didn’t want to deal with it.  I took a longer loop walk around the other side of town instead.  It was a beautiful night out.

Randomly walking around in the middle of the night is something I would have done when I was 18.  It felt funny doing it.  I saw the town from a different perspective.  Then I rolled up on the canning plant.  This place is huge.  During the summer it runs 24/7.  I looked up at a giant conveyer belt that was dumping green beans.  Like some weirdo I just stood there on the curb after midnight staring at green beans falling through the air.  After a few minutes of this I had attracted the attention of a few workers inside so I decided to move on 🙂

I felt kinda good when I went to bed last night.  I guess walking was more relaxing than the bar idea 🙂

We’ll see what Saturday night brings!

– BST

Here is a not very good picture of the bean plant.  This is just one building.  The whole place is huge.

The weather decided to cooperate and I got out for a great walk today.  Took tons of pics.  I’ll post a gallery at the end of this post.

I went to a park along the river, and then walked up into downtown.  Stopped for some excellent coffee while downtown.  Now that I live in the country it’s fun to sit on a busy corner sipping coffee and watching the hustle and bustle of the city go by.  Ended up being a fairly long walk.  I think I got my exercise in today 🙂

Went back home for dinner, and then decided to go see a movie at the mall.  I went with “Pacific Rim”.  I expected giant robots beating the shit out of huge monsters.  I got exactly what I expected 🙂  Walked around the mall a little bit.  Things look good.  Far fewer empty stores compared to just a few years ago.

Tomorrow I head back home.  As much as I love the city, I just know that it will be nice when I get back out into the country.  When you leave the city behind, and cross into those wide open spaces, it seems like your heart rate goes down a few notches.  Then, when I round the corner into my small town I always get that “I’m Home” feeling.  But, I’m happy that the city is close for those times I do want it hehe 🙂

I’ll put up a gallery of the pictures from the walk in this post.  Then I’ll put up another post with a gallery of some mall pics.

– BST

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