No One Is Fine

Regarding sobriety: it sucks. I cannot believe that people voluntarily feel uncomfortable feelings. It’s the worst.

Avoiding and numbing is the bomb. Now that the 12-step program tells me I can’t continue doing what I normally do in order to avoid feeling my feelings, I’ve just been lying around the house eating chocolate syrup directly from the bottle.

My mother is dying of cancer and I haven’t allowed myself to feel feelings because I have three little kids to care for and I don’t have time to be sad, as ludicrous as that sounds. I haven’t allowed myself to feel feelings about much of anything, really, for almost 9 years. But I’ve been running from my feelings for over 18 years, doing everything under the sun to avoid them.

You know what I’d advise against? Doing that.

Knowing that women have the tendency to put themselves last, I have always prided myself on my ability to make self-care a priority. I shower, I take time away from my house and my kids, I do things that make me feel whole as a human being. Except for one thing: I do not, have not, given myself permission to feel much of anything.

Here are some things (excuses) I’ve been known to say out loud:

I don’t have time to be sad! I have kids to take care of!

I don’t have time to be depressed!

I don’t have time to grieve!Ā 

I’m fine. I can just power through this.

I don’t have time to be sick!

I don’t have time to take a nap!

I don’t have time to process my emotions right now. I’ll just deal with them later.

I’m fine.

I’ll be fine.

Everything’s fine.

These are lies, all lies. No one is fine. I am not fine. I need a thousand naps and several dozen boxes of Kleenex and hours upon hours of therapy. I need jellybeans but I don’t need jellybeans.

I need to feel things because I’m a person and people have emotions that require processing. Motherhood is not an excuse to avoid this process.Ā  Somehow, I’m going to have to learn how to give myself permission to feel shit that I don’t want to feel, while at the same time functioning as a mother and member of society. Women stuff shit down and stuff shit down and then, BAM! We’re alcoholics or bulimics or shopaholics.

Today, I don’t want to stop self-medicating. I miss it. I mean, I really, REALLY miss it. But you know what? It’s been almost 3 weeks, and I’m too stubborn to backslide. I’m going to sit with these feelings that are weighing me down like lead and I’m going to allow myself the time to work through them. And I’m probably going to hate every minute of it.

breathing-into-paper-bag

I would source this image if I had a clue where it came from.

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9 thoughts on “No One Is Fine

  1. It helps me if I kind of give myself a specific place and time to feel it. It keeps me from trying to outrun it, but it also helps with the fear that if I go down this path, I’m going to fall into a pit. I can only fall into that pit for so long, then I get to go back to normal life and be mom and be okay again. I know that sounds crazy. But I don’t like feelings because I don’t like relinquishing control, and that helps me feel the bad stuff and still feel in control.

    Peace and much love to you. You’re doing something really really hard.

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  2. I feel you. My mom just passed away last month from lung cancer. My four year old has been diagnosed autism. It is overwhelming!! You want to rely on unhealthy coping mechanisms. I am dealing with some of the same things. Props to you. Keep at it! Fake it until you make it, right?

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  3. When I read you were going sober, I was so proud for you. It is so not easy. Then I read you lost readers because you proclaimed your addiction and are working hard to get through it. I was shocked! I am not an alcoholic even though my blog is titled Midlife Margaritas, but I could never leave a wonderful, real, funny mom blogger because she’s getting sober and documenting it for all to see! You are the bravest even if you don’t feel you are. You are going through shit no one wants to go through. I’m sorry about your mom and your shitty days you are having. But I support you! šŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

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