I don’t think I’m alone in being an alcoholic with a generally addictive personality.
When my mind gets fixed on something, it’s all over.
Cigarettes. Pot. Slot machines. Diet. Exercise. Even reading can become an obsessive compulsion. If I start a book series, like I did with, “The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo” trilogy, “The Hunger Games” trilogy, fuck, I’ll admit it, even the “Twilight” saga, once I start I just can’t stop. Even though I have a long reading list of books (and good ones!) that have been in my personal queue for what seems like forever, once I start a series, there’s no reading anything else until it’s completed. I was sent the complete “Game of Thrones” series, and I have not started it for this very reason. I know how I operate.
I am an addict, and, with addiction comes a very rigid schedule.
And sure, being obsessed with books is hardly going to punish your liver, lungs, or wallet. But, you see where I’m going with this…
I’ve found when you take one addiction away, another runs rampant. At a certain point it’s not even what you’re addicted to, it’s just the addiction that you need to keep feeding.
I’ve been very aware of this since getting off the sauce. Trying to notice when my addict brain starts to turn its gnarly cogs. My hope is, in being aware, that I can cut off this type of obsessive behavior at the pass. Try to establish healthier habits and routines. But, I’ve also had to cut myself some slack. Drinking was my biggest vice. I think about and crave liquor all the time. There hasn’t been one day in sobriety that I have not actively imagined myself sitting at my local pub, with a tall Stoli and soda, limes, and a black straw in front of me. Not one day where I haven’t imagined what it would feel like to be drunk again. And, I’m going to be facing that reality everyday from here on out.
But, when all is said and done, I’m sober. I have to give myself some credit where credit is due. So, if I feel like chain smoking so that I feel better about not having a drink, well, I’m going to fucking chain smoke. I’ll worry about my lungs later.
Fighting addiction is about patience. Forgiving yourself the small thing for the sake of the big thing. Like anything else that’s worth shit in life, at some point you have to compromise. This for that. Tit for tat. Just to make things work.
So, maybe quitting smoking is on the horizon. We’ll just have to see.
One page at a time. One organ at a time. One day at a time.