A few weeks ago, I wrote what most deemed to be a pretty dark post.
It wasn’t meant to be dark. It wasn’t a cry for help. At least, I don’t think it was…
But several of my blog readers reached out to make sure I wasn’t crying into my beer with a shotgun in my mouth.
And I wasn’t, I swear.
All I wanted to say was that things felt yucky and, therefore, I felt yucky. Feelings have a way of overriding our better logic, and I’m probably the worst offender in that regard.
My life is run on emotions.
I used to congratulate myself mightily for being so in touch with them.
With a bit of time and hard-won experience, however, I see now that you can be attuned to your feelings without giving them carte blanche to take you wherever the hell they want.
Especially when there’s alcohol involved.
I’ve done quite a bit of blogging lately on my tumultuous relationship with liquid courage.
Mostly, it’s an abusive relationship: I drink, then I beat myself up for drinking. Afterward, my body beats me up for drinking.
Still, I can’t help myself. Despite the number of times I’ve tried to cut it out of my life entirely, it always seems to find a foothold again.
The great philosopher Russell Brand (haha) talks about how ridiculous it is that us humans are one of the only species imbued with the gift of logic and critical thinking, and yet we persist in letting our emotions rule the day.
We have the distinct privilege of knowing what’s good for us and doing the opposite anyway.
Because we fucking feel like it.
So, I wrote that post, which (I thought) dealt with all of the crazy ways we try to assuage our discomfort, anxiety, fear and self-loathing with things that we KNOW will hurt us in the end.
Like I said, the message wasn’t received as I’d hoped.
Almost immediately after hitting “publish,” my phone was abuzz with calls from my very concerned, very tearful mother wanting to know if I needed serious help.
I was flummoxed. Say what? Lady, you missed the point!
In a fit of irritation and rage (and probably a little but of residual alcohol) I vowed to shutter my blog completely.
I needed to find an audience who “got” me. Who wouldn’t take everything I said and misconstrue it (and then force me to explain myself when, I believed, I’d already done an adequate job of that).
With time comes perspective, and in the following week or two, I realized some things:
- Having people in my life who cared enough to call when they felt concern was a GOOD thing
- If my message was ill received, it was no one’s fault but my own
See, as a writer intent on sharing my viewpoints with the world, it’s up to ME to make sure my intended message comes across. That is, by definition, the job of a writer – to express an idea, concept or thought in such a way that folks will get it.
Of course, we can do our very best to translate what’s inside to the outside world and STILL fuck it up. And once a piece of writing is “out there,” it’s open to the interpretation of whomever chooses to take it in.
So, in an effort to “write” my wrong (ha… ha…) here is what I was trying to say, but didn’t get across very clearly:
We all feel shitty sometimes. We all go to our own respective “dark” places. Sometimes, it gets so uncomfortable sitting in our mess that we will try anything to feel better: alcohol, pills, drugs.
Let’s just be real about it, mmmk? And maybe try to establish better habits.
Y’know. If you feel like it.