Friday, August 21, 2009

Day 5, Meeting 5: Stinky-winky

Something stinks. There is this gnarly odor in the air of San Francisco reminiscent of when this large developer bought this cute little family farm by my parent's house in Massachusetts where I grew up. Not knowing a damn thing about farming, he fertilized the 180 acres in chicken shit. Straight, unprocessed chicken shit. Not the best way to make friends. And we lived in the next town over and it reeked for weeks! I won't mention that this same developer eventually won the contract for the "The Big Dig" and just recently filed for bankruptcy. That same developer was a restauranteur I believe before he bought a construction company as an investment. And you may have heard about the accident that happened when the tunnel opened. Karma's a bitch but that seems a bit extreme for just layering chicken shit on a massive field in the middle of a Boston suburb. I'm not sure why I thought to write all that....

I'm on my fifth meeting in 5 days and I have to say, I feel pretty good. Five is the most meetings consecutively I've ever gone to. It's working it's magic.

I went to my usual Friday meeting tonight which I had missed last week because I had been in LA. I hadn't missed that meeting since I started going a few months ago and it felt weird to skip a week. I like this meeting because one of my favorite times to go out and drink and party was right after work on a Friday. So I kinda feel like I'm going out even though I'm not at all but it gives me a feeling of being social before I go home. It's a women's meeting. Of course, I go home around 8:30pm which I think is always a little sad and feels like a letdown. The last few weeks of this meeting, however, I've left feeling a bit unsettled. I've tried sharing, I've tried not sharing, I've wanted to share and not been called on. I've introduced myself when I was new and I re-introduced myself when I was not so new asking for people to reach out again. But there is something a bit unsettling, raw that bums me out some nights on my way home on Friday. And I felt that again tonight.

When I first got sober last year, I went through this period where I was crying every Saturday night. Weekends were hard for me. Excruciatingly long. I'd feel so unsettled, bored and discontent that I would just break down by Saturday. I had spent hours numb and hungover all weekend when I drank! Having time was a brutal feeling. My work life was not at it's best and perhaps I was decompressing but my work life had been shitty for a little while so I attributed this to my sobriety. At first, I just felt crazy and weird and like a freak when I first got sober. Then I felt lonely, empty and bored. My therapist had kept urging me to go to meetings but the line between feeling crazy and being lonely enough had to be crossed for me to get in the rooms.

Recently, after these Friday meetings, I've been feeling remnants of those same feelings only on Fridays and not Saturdays. I also thought it might be because it's a women's meeting. In the last 10 years, I have had to make a concerted effort to befriend women. I was raised by a fairly independent feminist mother and a father who considered himself a jock and treated me sometimes like the son he never had so I ended up an idealistic athletic tomboy or something. I played with dolls and barbies (much to my mother's chagrin, the barbies I mean) but I also skateboarded, played 4 sports a year (no I'm not going to have an Uncle Rico moment right now but I was a pretty good athlete). I grew up in Maryland on a street with mostly boys so from 3 years old to 15 years old, those were my playmates. But I also hung out with a lot of guys because of sports and well, my desire to learn more about gender barriers that I could bust through. I landscaped for 5 consecutive summers leading crews of mostly men in their 30s from ages 16-20. And I also had a fairly overactive sex drive to boot. Often times over the last 15 years my friends were my lovers and then my friends again. I slept with men sometimes in a stereotypically "guy" way, especially when I was using. Using men for sex and at my worst moments leading up to sobriety, drugs. Ew. Not expecting anything in return and definitely not expecting to be called again. Those were some low times. Apparently, not my lowest because I kept doing coke and drinking even after some questionable hook-ups. I also had consistent boyfriends off and on with varying degrees of loyalty which could probably be attributed to my use, my sense of entitlement, my need to date someone that treated me like shit so I had an excuse to act the way I did even though I probably would do that to anyone because I was an alcoholic and drug addict (that is still so hard for me to write). Blech.

I gotta say, I have a pretty bad memory and recounting just now some of the things I've done is a bit intense. I have been so entrenched in my denial these last few months trudging through my first step. And what I just wrote, oooo boy (pardon the pun) brought up some stuff just now. I can't wait to keep going with this program.

The breakfast went wonderfully today and I managed to get to work by 5:30AM, bright and bushy-tailed. The warehouse guys loved breakfast and I think it was pretty good. Some took seconds so that was a good sign. I was happy that my coworkers had bonded despite it being a tough week work-wise. I made peace with little tif with one of the warehouse managers and was proud of my follow through in showing my appreciation for the warehouse. Those guys are good guys and I've grown close to them in the years I've worked there. Some days, they are the ones that get me out of bed in the morning and who I go to work for.

I came home early, sacked out for 3 hours, called my dad who I hadn't talked to in a while and went to my meeting. A former coworker now works at the agency that hosts this Friday meeting. After hearing the speaker share her story, I felt pulled to go see my friend in her office. I cut out and missed about 15 minutes of the meeting. My sponsor called me because she thought something had happened. This former coworker is a good friend of mine and she left on good terms and has always done well at looking out for number one. I've envied her ability to do that, fly under the radar while the rest of us flail in plain sight. I have learned a lot from her professionally and she has been a mentor and an inspiration in some ways. She's also not a big drinker and very supportive of my recovery. It was good to see her. I went back to the meeting and was there for closing. It was rude of me to leave since I hadn't wanted to share and I was feeling cocky and self-assured. I won't do that again.

Tomorrow, I'm working in the morning. I feel a bit more rested right now and less rushed. I'm taking Monday off since I'm working next Saturday too. Good job making boundaries. Looking forward to meeting with my sponsor on Sunday. Thinking of going dancing with my man in Golden Gate Park during the day. That sounds fun. I've been before and it's nice because there are DJs outside in the sun and you can dance and you aren't in a bar that smells like barf, pee and liquor:) Stinky-winky.

I just went downstairs to clean my cat's litter box and as I was taking the yuckiness out to the garbage, I saw a shooting the city. So cool. Good night.

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