Sobriety. I could feel every nerve ending in my entire body. “How am I going to do this?” I felt so afraid and so alone. My kids were gone. My boyfriend was gone. My cats were even gone. No job, no God, no savings, no license, no health insurance, no hope and not much desire to deal with any of it.
I couldn’t think. I couldn’t listen to music. I couldn’t watch TV. I couldn’t read. I couldn’t hold a conversation. Everything either made me angry or sad. Everything SUCKED. My pity party had no adult beverages! Or guests.
When Rich first passed away, I wished I could fast forward to the end of my life. I was willing to skip everything, say goodbye, then find him on the other side and be happy again. Alcohol would get me closer and closer to that. Days would pass in a blink and I would be that much closer to him. I became dependent on. I needed it. It had a hold on me and I pushed everything and everyone else aside. The thought of not having it, ever again, was overwhelming. I thought, “Who could possibly do that? Why would anyone want to do that?!?!” It was my go to. It did exactly what I wanted it to do. It worked until it didn't. It was winning.
I thought about a dream I had shortly after Ethan was born. I was standing in my garage holding the baby. I saw Rich at the end of the driveway walking toward us. I was relieved. I was delighted to realize he was home. He came back to me, to us. I handed him Ethan. He held him and looked so lovingly at him. He brought their cheeks together and breathed him in. He smiled at me and touched my face. He handed the baby back to me and said, “You can do this.” He turned to leave and I was confused. He said, “I love you, Den, but God has given me a gift. I wouldn’t come back if I could.”
(Rich and I were not the sort to speak about God. We mocked organized religion, too. In fact, we were blasphemers. That was a visit, I’m sure of it. I spent many years hating God.)
I wanted Madi and Ethan home so I picked up the phone. I asked someone who lived near me to go to a recovery meeting with me. I knew I had to stay away from the city and build some supports in the North Hills. I knew I needed to take their suggestions. I needed to find out how to live in a world that offered me only pain, a world I felt wronged me, without being altered. It's called life on life's terms. Ugh…